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October 04, 2022 4 min read

Let me guess, you’ve heard of probiotics or have been told to take them but not really sure what they are, how they work or what benefits you can expect by taking them. We are going to break it all down for you today allowing you to better understand what they are and how you can benefit from them!


What are probiotics?


Probiotics are the live friendly gut bacteria and yeast found in your gastrointestinal tract which play many roles in your overall health, however their main role is to aid in digestion. Our bodies are filled with helpful and harmful bacteria, probiotics are seen as the helpful bacteria as they keep your gut healthy. There are many different species of probiotic bacteria, how the two most important strains are:


Lactobacillus:This beneficial bacteria is found in the human gut, mouth and vagina. We can find this strain in dairy products like kefir or yogurt but can also be taken through a supplement. This bacteria aids in digestion, kills off harmful bacteria and helps the gut absorb nutrients from the foods we eat.


Bifidobacterium: These bacteria help the gut in many ways, however the main role is to take up space in the gut. This is important because as bifidobacteria take up space, it leaves less room for harmful bacteria to set up camp in your gut. This can help you fight off infections as this bacteria essentially crowds them out.



Why do we need probiotics?


From the moment we are born and for the rest of our lives, we are host to bacteria all around and inside our body. Though this might sound unsettling, we have been co-existing with these bacteria for centuries and they help us as much as we help them. However, we can start to develop issues when dealing with an imbalance in our gut microbiome, which is where probiotics come in and why we need them. 


Our gut health impacts our overall health, meaning if you want to live a healthy and balanced life, you need probiotics to come in and work their magic. Not only do we need them for proper digestion but they impact our immune system, hormone production, brain function, sleep quality, mental health and so much more. 


There is still much more research to be done on these little gut bugs, however evidence shows that those with an unbalanced gut microbiome (lack of probiotic bacteria) tend to deal with more health issues than those with abundant probiotic bacteria present. Some of these issues include:


  • Weak immune system
  • Stomach issues (bloating, constipation, discomfort, etc)
  • IBS
  • Anxiety, depression
  • Skin conditions (acne, rashes, eczema, etc)
  • Fatigue, insomnia
  • Etc.

 

How do we get probiotics?


Though our bodies need sufficient probiotics to function optimally, they don’t know how to produce them naturally, meaning we need to supplement them through our diet.


There is a range of probiotic rich foods that you can incorporate into your diet to help with your probiotic intake, these include:


  • Kefir
  • Kimchi
  • Yogurt
  • Fermented sauerkraut
  • Miso
  • Kombucha

Though these options are great, the average person isn’t eating enough probiotic rich foods in a day to hit the daily minimum recommended dose which is 10 billion CFU’s (colony forming units). This is why it is highly recommended to supplement our daily probiotic intake through capsules. In doing so, you can ensure you are hitting your daily dose, repopulating your gut with helpful bacteria and killing off any overgrowth of harmful bacteria that has been taking up space in your gut. Anyone can benefit from taking a daily probiotic, but it is especially recommended for those dealing with stomach issues caused by poor digestion. 


If you are looking to heal your gut with the aid of probiotics, it’s important to choose a high quality probiotic supplement, meaning a multi-strain, high CFU count supplement. But what does this mean?


A multi-strain probiotic is important because we have thousands of species of probiotic bacteria living in our guts and they all offer different health benefits. On top of balancing our gut microbiome, it’s important to increase microbial diversity to reap all these benefits. By taking a single strain probiotic supplement you are missing out on the opportunity to do so as you are only adding one new species to the gut. 


A high CFU count, which stands for the amount of colony forming units found in each capsule is important because these bacteria mainly settle down in the large intestine (the colon) meaning they need to bypass the stomach to get there. This involves surviving the stomach acid and digestive process which usually kills off a good chunk of these bacteria. Taking a daily probiotic supplement with at least 10 billion CFU’s will help to ensure a large portion of them make it to the intestines allowing them to settle down and get to work.


We kept all this in mind when creating our Flora probiotic which is our 9 strain supplement guaranteeing 10 billion CFU’s per dose until expiry date. Out of the 9 strains that Flora offers, lactobacillus and bifidobacterium are included, which are two of the most important strains for optimal gut health. You can find them by clicking here or heading over to our products page under “Flora”.


The world of probiotics is rapidly growing and new research is surfacing daily. Though we don’t fully understand the depth of their impact on us, the evidence we have so far is pretty incredible. Check out our other blogs to learn more about this impact and how probiotics can help you.





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