What is the microbiome?
It’s you! Each person consists of trillions of microbes, or bacteria, most of which reside in the small and large intestines. These bacteria in your GI tract possess multiple jobs, including a role in food digestion, the immune system, and vitamin production. Malfunction of the bacterial components of the microbiome correlates with autoimmune disorders like diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis1. One may take probiotics to help maintain a healthy microbiome.
What are probiotics?
Probiotics are microorganisms, or good bacteria, that may contribute to the microbiome by aiding the pre-existing bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract as they digest food, remove toxins, and facilitate immunity. Probiotic supplements most frequently contain Saccharomyces boulardii yeast or Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which are lactic acid bacteria2. One can also consume probiotics through fermented foods, like kimchi and sauerkraut, and yogurt3.
The role of probiotics
Multiple clinical trials have demonstrated that probiotics may aid GI disorders4. Probiotics could supplement the functions of the bacteria that organically exist in the gut. These bacteria produce vitamin K, folate, and various forms of vitamin B, which work to support the immune system. Additionally, bacterial fermentation contributes 10% of the energy supply used daily by the body5. It is the role of probiotics to supplement these bacteria to ensure sufficient performance of said duties. Probiotics might also increase the presence of lactic acid bacteria in the GI system which works to stabilize common yeast levels and breaks down viruses6.
Why people choose to take probiotics
Most commonly, people experiencing gastrointestinal problems and disorders take probiotics. Many people believe that probiotics may ease the symptoms and complications of irritable bowel syndrome and diarrhea induced by infection or antibiotics. Probiotics may also reduce gas, bloating, constipation, and improve insufficient nutrient absorption caused by bacteria imbalances6.
Products to consider
This probiotic supports healthy immune function of the gastrointestinal tract. It blends various probiotics, including Lactobacillus with the intention of promoting the function of the lymphoid tissue associated with the gut and create a healthy barrier.
Solaray – Multidophilus 12 Strain Probiotic
This probiotic blend introduces healthy, beneficial bacteria into the gastrointestinal tract to maintain microbiome balance. The bacteria may support the normal absorption of nutrients by the digestive system.
- Hair, M., & Sharpe, J. (2014, January). Fast Facts About the Human Microbiome. The Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health.
- Williams, N. T. (2010). Probiotics. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 67(6), 449–458. https://doi.org/10.2146/ajhp090168
- Silvermann, R. (2018, October 21). What to Eat for Brain Health. Westchester Integrative Health. http://drrobertsilverman.com/what-to-eat-for-brain-health/.
- Kelesidis, T., & Pothoulakis, C. (2012). Efficacy and safety of the probiotic Saccharomyces boulardii for the prevention and therapy of gastrointestinal disorders. Therapeutic advances in gastroenterology, 5(2), 111–125. https://doi.org/10.1177/1756283X11428502
- Ciorba M. A. (2012). A gastroenterologist’s guide to probiotics. Clinical gastroenterology and hepatology: The official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association, 10(9), 960–968. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cgh.2012.03.024
- GI Health With Probiotics: White Paper. DaVinci Laboratories. (n.d.). https://info.davincilabs.com/probiotics-white-paper-new.
* The Food and Drug Administration has not evaluated any statements on this website. Dietary supplement products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.