Which Is The Best Probiotic To Take?
Good bacteria in humans have beneficial effects on basically every system in the body. They regulate our immune system, mood, and may even protect us against certain cancers. Bacteria account for a large proportion of the biomass that we have. These bacteria are made up of good and bad, and they play a significant role in the hosts body. Unfortunately, overuse of antibiotics is shifting the balance and causing poor health and disease. Taking probiotics after antibiotics is important to keep a healthy balance and to prevent common side effects while using them.
Gut bacteria can change depending on many different factors, such as weight gain or loss, stress, antibiotics, illness, and even simply having a bad diet can change the balance as well. Maintaining good gut health will provide you with many benefits, but these beneficial bacteria can easily be wiped out by overuse of antibiotics. Beneficial bacteria for humans are crucial for proper immune system function.
Many of the foods people consume today are loaded with sugar and devoid of any nutrition. Good vs bad bacteria is a fight that is constantly ongoing inside the body, and it’s your job to provide the best nutrition and environment for the good bacteria to flourish and colonise, so that the bad bacteria don’t get out of control and cause disease.
What Are the Beneficial Bacteria For Humans?
The are many different strains of bacteria which are beneficial for human health, and these include: Bifidobacterium longum, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacilus brevis, Lactobacillus plantarum, and Lactobacillus DDS-1. There are others which play a role in human health, but these are some of the strain which have a lot of good evidence behind their beneficial effects in the body. Probiotics help restore the balance in improve gut health and thus overall health.
CR and Improved Microbiome
When I began eating healthily, one of the first effects of the diet was on my digestive system. At first weird things were happening, and I could tell things were changing. All my life I had suffered from a condition known as irritable bowel syndrome, and doctors never really suggested anything useful. They never informed me that my diet could be the cause of this problem.
Fast forward a few months after beginning the diet and my gut health was the best it had ever been. I no longer was suffering from any stomach problems, and a host of other issue cleared up as well, including my severe hay fever allergy which I had for years. It wasn’t a coincidence, it was my diet.
Calorie restriction has been found to improve gut bacteria in mice and dogs, whilst studies looking at obesity in humans have shown a negative effect on gut health. A shift towards a better balance of good bacteria is thought to be just one of the reasons calorie restriction extends lifespan. People who live to 100 have very good microbiome ecosystems. Simply put, they have better gut health.
Gut bacteria plays a huge role in our health
- Supplying essential nutrients
- Aiding digestion and gut health
- Keeping the immune system healthy
- Mental health
- Skin Health
I’ve taken too many antibiotics!
I’ve mentioned before that I have been prone to UTI infections when I was younger, and that once a person gets one, it is 50/50 whether or not you will get another one. I don’t suffer from them anymore, but I did have to take low dose antibiotics for years because of repeated bladder infections, most likely from prostatitis. At times, especially on high doses of doxycycline, during an active infection, I felt increased anxiety, which seemed to be alleviated by taking probiotics.
It’s not always easy to restore the balance in the gut, but it is possible if you stick to a clean diet and boost the good bacteria with things like kefir or a good probiotic supplement.
These side effects from antibiotics seemed to be prevented once I introduced probiotics into my supplement reigmen. And also, the best way to boost immune system after antibiotics is to take probiotics to put friendly bacteria back into the body.
What is the best probiotic to take after using antibiotics?
I’ve tried out many different probiotics with varying levels of success. The one that I felt made the biggest difference was the probiotic made by Healthy Origins. However, I have come across another probiotic that I like since I originally wrote this article.
How to choose a good probiotic to take?
When choosing a probiotic, you have to make sure that you find one with a decent number of colonies. You typically want numbers in the billions, probably 30 billion and above. Next, you want to make sure that the strains are acid resistant or if they’re not, then they are coated to resist degradation by stomach acid. Stomach acid will kill all of the good bacteria you swallow, and you won’t get any benefit from taking them! Which would be a waste of money.
Below are two good probiotics that I recommend. However, I’ve only had limited experience with Captain Biotics. Whereas with the Healthy Origins, I’ve had years of good results. Healthy Origins contains less variety of good bacteria than Captain Biotics does, but they are good good quality supplements. So take your pick! 🙂
Healthy Origins 30 Billion CFU
Healthy Origins is a good brand with excellent quality supplements. It contains many different types of good bacteria, ensuring that you get a diverse range of flora, to help improve overall health.
See Reviews for Healthy Origins, Probiotic supplement (US)
Captain Biotics 50 BILLION CFU
A wide range of strains in this probiotic, more than the healthy origins probiotic.
This product is also free from any artificial ingredients and preservatives. It is suitable for vegetarians and vegans as well.
Symptoms Of An Unhealthy Gut
If you’re unsure whether or not you have an unhealthy gut, here are some of the signs and symptoms that you might have which could indicate that there is a problem.
- Frequent infections
- Poor skin
- Fungus / candida infections
- Acid Reflux
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Anxiety or depression
- Autoimmune issues and allergies
If you’ve have used antibiotics in the past and you think they might have affected your health in a negative way, then it’s certainly worth trying a probiotic supplement to see if any problems you have improve once you introduce more healthy bacteria into the microbiome
To help make the probiotics more effective, make sure to include plenty of foods which are prebiotic such as garlic, leeks, onions, almonds. Foods like kimchi, kefir, and yogurts are also great sources of good bacteria aside from probiotic supplements.
In this BBC Article it was reported that ‘Older people have 1000 times less friendly bacteria in their gut’ – and researchers have since found that probiotics improves immune function in elderly persons.
1. Structural modulation of gut microbiota in life-long calorie-restricted mice
2. Dogs Lived 1.8 Years Longer On Low Calorie Diet: Gut Flora May Explain It
3 Changes seen in gut bacteria content and distribution with obesity: causation or association?
4. Review on microbiota and effectiveness of probiotics use in older persons