(And How Probiotics Can Help)
Many of us are on a perpetual quest for a satisfying balance between work, family and fun.
The same goes for the healthy bacteria that live in our bodies and require a delicate balance to function optimally.
Although bacteria can cause nasty infections and illness, the truth is that our bodies are full of good bacteria that help support nearly every bodily function. But problems can arise, both big and small, when too much bad bacteria outweigh the good.
In addition to bacteria, our digestive tract also houses healthy yeast, viruses, and protozoa. Collectively, these are called microbes, and they make up our gut microbiome.*
When your microbiome is in balance, everything runs smoothly from top to bottom. But an imbalance in this microbiome, which occurs for nearly everyone on occasion and for some of us with annoying frequency, disrupting our immune system and our gut health.
Why is our gut so vulnerable? Because it contains over 100 trillion microbes! And when this massive yet delicate system gets thrown out of whack, you feel “off” and often experience digestive discomfort as a result.*
When there is an imbalance, providing your body with additional healthy microbes can help restore the status quo. And probiotics are a great way to do this. So, today I’m sharing what probiotics are and the wide range of health benefits they can provide.
Probiotics and Digestive Health
The bacteria and other microbes found in your gut microbiome are needed to help break down the foods you eat. Microbes also help protect your gut from the bad bacteria that may be found in those foods.
If there is an imbalance caused by bad bacteria, antibiotic use, or a poor diet, this can lead to digestive issues including constipation, diarrhea, stomach discomfort and indigestion.
Studies have shown that probiotic use can reduce stomach upset including diarrhea related to antibiotic use. Probiotics are also used to reduce diarrhea and gut issues related to various bacterial infections as a way to combat the bad bacteria in the gut.*
Probiotics not only reduce diarrhea but can also improve constipation. Several studies have highlighted the benefits of taking probiotics for those struggling with irregular bowel movements.*
When it comes to the upper digestive tract, probiotics are also beneficial. Multiple clinical studies have shown that probiotics can improve upper digestive tract issues including symptoms of nausea, belching, indigestion, and acid-related discomfort.*
By restoring and maintaining a healthy gut microbiome balance, probiotics support healthy gut function and overall digestive comfort by addressing the root cause of gut dysfunction and resolving the issue rather than just masking it.*
Digestive Health Improves Your Overall Health
Healthy gut microbes support immune function in and outside your digestive tract. Your immune system is made of several different types of cells that perform functions such as identifying invading organisms, eliminating infected cells, and cleaning up after an infection.*
Neutrophils, natural killer cells, and antigen cells are examples of these highly important immune system workers. Multiple studies have shown that the health of the gut microbiome influences and can even regulate these cells in your body.*
By supporting immune balance, the microbes in your gut can help reduce the risk of your body attacking itself and help reduce the risk of autoimmune disorders in and outside your gut.*
In addition to immune function, your gut can impact your heart health. The link between the gut microbiome and a healthier cardiovascular system is thought to be attributed to impaired bowel wall stability which can be weakened from an improperly supported microbiome.*
Impairment in bowel wall stability can allow bacteria and toxins to easily enter the bloodstream. When this happens, a heightened inflammatory state can occur which has been shown to contribute to significant cardiovascular issues.*
And although you probably don’t think of your lungs when you think of gut health, many of the fungi responsible for respiratory issues are also found in the gut. If there is an imbalance in these fungi, there could potentially be cross-over inflammation and the delicate balance in your lungs can be compromised.*
The Gut is Your Second Brain
And here is one more important reason you need to support your microbiome.
Your gut and your brain health have a lot more in common than you may realize. The cells in your brain that communicate with each other are called neurons and the lining of your gut has millions of them.*
Neurons in your gut create a lesser-known second nervous system called the enteric nervous system. Your gut creates several types of neurotransmitters including nearly all of your serotonin (the ‘happy’ neurotransmitter).*
The brain and gut communicate along the vagal nerve, this may be why you get ‘butterflies’ in your stomach when you’re nervous or excited. Research shows that the communication is a two-way street – with many cognitive dysfunctions and brain health issues potentially originating from imbalances or inflammation within the gut.*
And, gut microbes can help influence mood and calmness by signaling the brain to release neurotransmitters like GABA when you need it. This is why a healthy gut microbiome is a great way to support brain health.*
So whether you suffer from common digestive issues or just want to do everything you can to support your brain, heart and immune system, I strongly urge you to add a high-quality probiotic, such as my Activated ProbioticTM, to your daily health regimen.
To learn more about Activated ProbioticTM, click here.