Probiotics are live bacteria that can be taken as dietary supplements or consumed as food. The goal of taking probiotics is to increase the number of beneficial bacteria, also described as “good” or “friendly” bacteria, in order to bring the overall microbial population of the gut into a healthier balance. Restoring this balance may benefit people whose gut flora has become compromised by antibiotics, disease, surgery, or other factors.
What does it involve?
Always consult your doctor before starting a new supplement to make sure it is safe for you.
Probiotics are sold as supplements in the form of pills, capsules and powders. Many fermented foods naturally contain live probiotic cultures, including yogurt, sauerkraut, miso, soft cheeses, sourdough bread, and tempeh. Drinks such as kefir, Acidophilus milk, and kombucha also contain live cultures.
The results of several scientific studies have indicated that probiotics may benefit some people with IBS.
Probiotics do not usually cause any side effects. However, in some people, they may cause mild gas or bloating.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates probiotic products differently than it regulates drugs, and some products may make false claims.
It is not yet known which strains of probiotic bacteria are beneficial in which conditions. It is likely that each person has a unique optimal balance of each strain of bacteria, and probiotics that benefit one person may prove useless in another.
Some probiotic products may be expensive.
For more details about this treatment, visit:
Probiotics and Antibiotics – About IBS
Probiotic Therapy for Irritable Bowel Syndrome – Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
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