Advice on choosing a probiotic

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There are so many choices that you can consider when you look at probiotics and choosing a probiotic is very difficult. There are criteria you should look for when you choose a probiotic.

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Advice on choosing a probiotic

  1. 1. By Probiotics Expert: Dr. Raga
  2. 2. What are probiotics?  Probiotics are live microogranisms which are known to cause health benefits to its host by promoting intestinal balance.  Normally, the human digestive tract has about 400 types of probiotic bacteria which are capable of decreasing/inhibiting harmful bacterial growth and promoting a healthy, balanced digestive system.  Nowadays, probiotics are consumed as a part of fermented foods which are added with live active cultures such as yogurts, or in the form of dietary supplements.
  3. 3. How to choose a probiotic? 1. Determine health needs.  There are lots of probiotic strains that are available and intended for certain uses.  Take note of health needs. What specific conditions are being experienced? Is it simple constipation or a more severe form of health problem.  If the person is suffering from a common problem such constipation, a probiotic- containing yogurt should be considered.  However, if the person has a more severe condition such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), supplements are more appropriate.
  4. 4. How to choose a probiotic? 2. Assess lifestyle.  The packaging should be appropriate with the lifestyle of the person who will take probiotics.  For example, if a person is frequently travelling, a probiotic supplement or product with many storage rules is definitely not recommended.  Thus, one must check for the storage rules of the probiotic product. The probiotic products with no need for refrigeration is actually suitable for travelers who need supplementation of probiotics, such as those who have traveller’s diarrhea.
  5. 5. How to choose a probiotic? 3. Search for a probiotic that can survive the digestive system environment.  The Digestive system is a harsh environment for different substances. This is due to the breaking down of foods and other substances that goes in the digestive tract. In this process, it is the stomach acid which is responsible.  In considering which probiotic to use, look for the mechanism in which it is delivered to the intestines. It is recommended to choose a probiotic that is able to survive the acidic environment and able to reach the intestines.
  6. 6. How to choose a probiotic? 4. Amount of bacteria per capsule  In selecting the right probiotic, the amount of probiotic bacteria per capsule should also be considered.  Ideally, a capsule should contain 1 billion to 100 billion per capsule. Generally, it is believed that the more probiotic bacteria the better, but the strain is perhaps more important.  Though that’s the case, it is suggested that those just starting to take it, should begin by taking low doses. This is to prevent the “die-off” reaction. You must accustom your body to it as well as the prepare for the possibility of “die-off” symptoms.
  7. 7. How to choose a probiotic? 5. Number of probiotic bacterial strains  There are varying types of probiotics which use different strains of bacteria for probiotics.  There are some which use only one strain while others incorporate up to 15 strains.  Naturopaths do think that the more strains contained in a probiotic product the better.  Some strains are more important, B. Subtilis, acidophilus, s. Boulardi, b. Bifidum, are some of the more desired strains.
  8. 8. How to choose a probiotic? 6. Types of bacterial strains contained Here are some strains of bacteria which should be noted when choosing a probiotic:  Lactobacillus acidophillus: This is known as the most popular strain used in probiotics. Research studies have shown its effectiveness in enhancing the immune system and fighting off the candida infection.  Bifidobacterium bifidum: Another well-known strain commonly found in probiotic products. This strain is proven to aid digestion, improve immune system, and promote the synthesis of B vitamins.  Bacillus Subtilis: Spore based probiotic that can survive in harsh conditions as well as pass through your stomach acids.
  9. 9. How to choose a probiotic? 7. Focus on the effectiveness and safety of the probiotic.  Put extra attention to the label and packaging of the probiotic. Details such as the names & numbers of strains, other contents, storage rules, and expiration date. This is essential to ensure safety and effectiveness of the probiotic. Is the effectiveness guaranteed?  Also, prior to consuming any probiotic product, consult your doctor. You want to make sure they approve of you taking any supplement.
  10. 10. How to choose a probiotic? 8. Search for scientific research.  Look for scientific data that can prove how the probiotic works inside the body. This is essential to be informed if the product’s claims are true.  It is beneficial to check if the probiotic is safe and effective enough for use.  To understand the scientific research better, the doctors can also aid in explaining its use, effects, and side effects to the person who will take it.
  11. 11. How to choose a probiotic? 11. Read online reviews.  Searching and reading online reviews are beneficial because people who have used probiotics before, can give a picture of what happens with the use of a certain probiotic. In reviews, people can know more about a probiotic product if it is safe, effective, has no side effects, and affordable.
  12. 12. How to choose a probiotic? 12. Do Your Own Research  Really do your own research and see what kind of probiotics are in the supplement, what country it is made, what manufacturing practices they follow, and really the only way to truly know if it works is to try it out for yourself. Test it and see. Not all probiotics are for everybody, but that does not mean it’s a bad probiotic, it just isn’t suitable for your body.
  13. 13. My Favorite Probiotic  Probacto is the best probiotic that I have ever run into. They use multiple strains and they are spore forming so they can last while not refrigerated. They do not use cheap bacteria, but expensive ones such as B. Subtilis.  Probacto also contains prebiotics to help stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria in your gut.  Probacto contains digestive enzymes to assist in your digestion.  Probacto is enteric coated and made to be slow release so it will release in your gut gradually.
  14. 14. Conclusion  Probiotics have become very popular nowadays probably because of the health food craze. Many people now incorporate it to their daily diet . Also, more and more doctors have been open to recommending it to their patients. Some people even think that it is a medication instead of a supplement. Additionally, there have been many companies which release probiotic products. To ensure effectiveness and quality of such products, it is essential for consumers to be guided in which probiotics should be chosen.

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