Digestive problems are very common, particularly after festive occasions that include eating and drinking. Taking probiotics can help to alleviate gas, bloating and discomfort and can even assist in more serious digestive conditions.
Most people struggle with digestive problems at some stage of their lives– even if it’s only indigestion and
bloating from eating way too much on special occasions. Others suffer more constant discomfort and pain, for example, those
with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, heartburn, ulcers and diverticulosis.
The microbes in our body that play a primary role in our digestive processes are called probiotics, a form of bacteria. The average human body has up to 100 trillion of these organisms at any one time, that reside mainly in the gastrointestinal tract. They aid digestion in a variety of ways by:.
Dissolving complex proteins and mid-chain fatty acids from complex fats,.
Breaking down bile acids,.
Transforming polyphenols from plant materials to be digested– numerous antioxidants are polyphenols,.
Helping soluble fiber fermentation which yields digestible fatty acids and sugars. These bind cholesterol to.
reduce blood levels of LDL.
Probiotics also help produce vitamins A, B and K and especially B12, which helps to explain their mood-enhancing effects, as they regulate the ‘feel good’ chemicals of the brain– serotonin and tryptophan. They also help with the production of elemental serum calcium, which helps maintain healthy bones and secrete different sorts of acidic substances which, among other roles, help to facilitate the absorption of iron and minerals through the intestinal walls.
So it stands to reason that if your levels of probiotics are short of optimal you may experience digestive problems, as your food is not being digested as efficiently as it should be. This may generate problems such as gas, bloating, indigestion, constipation and general stomach discomfort.
How do you know if your levels are inadequate? Even if you’re fit and healthy and not suffering from any of the above symptoms your levels may not be the very best. Although probiotics are durable little creatures,they’re vulnerable to a multitude of dangers. These include: foods lacking in fiber, antibiotics, pain relievers, oral contraceptives, corticosteroids, refined sugar, trans-fatty acids, chemical pharmaceuticals, antacids, food colorings, surplus animal proteins, acid blockers, preservatives, irregular body rhythms, low oxygen levels, lack of sleep, aging, anxiety, and the list goes on.
There are few of us in modern society who wouldn’t be affected by at least a few of those factors. Lack of adequate sleep, a very commonplace issue these days with our busy lifestyle, is especially damaging to probiotics as it’s when you’re asleep that they do their finest work. A lack of sleep can decimate vital probiotics, which will render the remaining ones less effective.
This is where supplements come into play. They not only top up your levels of natural probiotics but they also assist them to boost more colonies, as the supplemented probiotics only stay in your system for a few weeks. That’s why you gain the most benefit from taking them consistently over the long term, although there are lots of instances when a short course of probiotics is effective, for example, recuperation from illness.