Taking probiotic supplements is a common way to maintain good intestinal bacteria and therefore health. Good probiotics are necessary because the intestines’ own friendly bacteria are not resistant to a Western lifestyle. Fequent use of antibiotics, coffee, alcohol, sugar, certain food additives and preservatives among other things reduce the viability of our intestinal bacteria.
How do good gut bacteria replenish?
Replenishing the benign gut bacteria can be done with food supplements or by eating fermented foods. Sauerkraut and kimchi are examples of fermented vegetables. Using both supplements and fermented foods gives the best results, although supplements alone can go a long way. Just remember, it is important that they are of high quality and meet the conditions mentioned below.
Conditions for supplements
First of all, your supplement must be formulated to contain bacterial strains which can survive your stomach acid. One of the things stomach acid does is to kill bacteria that we ingest, and unfortunately that may also apply to the good bacteria in your supplement. So make sure it contains stomach acid resistant strains of probiotics. Preferably, take them in gastric acid resistant capsules, which do not open until they reach the intestine.
If your supplement has a wide variety of bacterial strains and the right capsule to protect them, it’s probably a good product.
Variety of bacteria strains
Quality probiotic supplements add plenty of viable bacteria to the strains already living in the gut. Different varieties of bacteria have different properties. For example, there are strains that help with specific aspects of digestion, others with defence against pathogenic bacteria and viruses. Still others restore the intestinal wall. That’s why it is important that a probiotic supplement should contain several different strains.
Advantages of probiotics
The use of probiotics will contribute to a good digestion, the repair of your intestinal wall and the improvement of your immune system.
Improving the immune system goes beyond what many people realize. Currently, indications are emerging in medical science that good gut bacteria can improve your resistance to conditions such as influenza, sinusitis, asthma, lung infections and COPD.
Taking probiotics with multiple strains can have a much broader effect on your health than just improving your intestinal function.