The role of probiotics in maintaining health

It is rather humbling to acknowledge that it’s impossible for a human being to survive in isolation without relying on other organisms to sustain his/her life. Not only do we need to depend on plants and animals to fulfill our nutritional needs but we are also dependent on “helpful” microorganisms residing in our gut to maintain our health. These microorganisms are known as gut flora. As the metabolic activity of the colony of microorganisms residing in our gut resembles that of an organ, it is also often referred to as the “forgotten organ”.
Gut flora consists mainly of bacteria but also of certain yeasts and viruses. Most of these microorganisms are located in the large intestine. The right balance of these microorganisms helps confer several health benefits to the host including the maintenance of digestive health, protection of the gut from pathogens and prevention of several diseases such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, colorectal cancer and Alzheimer’s.
When the balance of the beneficial bacteria that inhabit our gut vis-à-vis the ‘bad bacteria’ falls out of proportion, we tend to become more vulnerable to health problems and diseases. This balance may be disturbed by the consumption of antibiotics, through exposure to environmental toxins or because of an unhealthy diet. To help maintain the delicate balance of our gut flora, it becomes imperative to consume a healthy diet rich in fermented foods, fibers as well as probiotic supplements.
Probiotic supplements
Probiotic supplements help supply the beneficial bacteria required by our gut. These bacteria are the same as or similar to the ones that colonize the large intestine naturally. When consumed to supplement a healthy lifestyle, probiotics can work towards enhancing the functioning of your digestive system, apart from conferring several other health benefits.
The probiotic bacteria groups most commonly used in probiotic supplements include Lactobaccilus and Bifidobacterium. Probiotic supplements that incorporate multiple species of bacteria are known as broad-spectrum probiotics or multi-probiotics.
Probiotics and digestive health
One of the most extensively studied and proven health benefits of probiotic supplements is their beneficial effect on the digestive health of a person. Probiotic supplements can help eradicate the following digestion-related problems:
Antibiotic-associated diarrhea
Consuming antibiotics tends to lead to an eradication of a considerable amount of natural bacteria living in the gut. This can lead to an upheaval in the digestive system causing diarrhea. Probiotics restore the natural balance of beneficial bacteria in the gut and help alleviate antibiotic-associated diarrhea.
Irritable bowel syndrome
Probiotic supplements can alleviate the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome such as gas, bloating, constipation and diarrhea.
Inflammatory bowel diseases
Probiotics can treat inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
Helicobacter pylori infections
Consuming probiotic supplements can also safeguard you against Helicobacter pylori infections that are said to be the major cause behind ulcers and stomach cancer.
Buying good quality probiotics can add a whole new dimension to your health regime. A manufacturer of natural supplements called Quality Nature is known to produce high-quality probiotic supplements that contain seven strains of bacteria with their distinctive health benefits. To know more about Quality Nature’s probiotic supplements, you can visit:http://www.qualitynature.com/probiotic-advantage/

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