Do you spend very little time thinking about your gut?
If so, you are not unlike millions of other people who tend not to think about what they cannot see.
However, inside your gut is a real living colony of bacteria. Some of these bacteria are good and some are downright bad.
Each day is a battle between the good and the bad in your gut. A lot of times, unfortunately, the bad claim victory, your immune system is compromised and your health suffers.
When your gut microbiome is out of balance many disturbing things can happen.
You may have depleted energy, poor skin, frequent colds and flu, foggy thinking, stunted metabolism and a host of other conditions. Some scientists even say that an unhealthy gut can eventually lead to heart disease, obesity, asthma and even cancer.
If you have a war happening in your gut, it is bound to result in compromised health, both physical and mental.
Don’t despair, there are many things you can do to restore your microbiome balance. Of course, eating a clean diet loaded with plenty of fresh fruits, veggies, healthy fat and protein is a great place to start. Managing stress, getting plenty of sleep and being active are other ways that you can keep your gut healthy.
However, even when we do all things right, we may still need help in restoring the balance. This is where probiotics come into play. Probiotics are live bacteria and yeast that can help restore a thriving colony of good bacteria in your digestive system. They help keep your gut healthy so your immune system can fight off intruders and you can enjoy wellbeing.
7 Signs You Need More Probiotics
#1. You are taking, or have taken, an antibiotic in the last five years
Sure antibiotics can help us feel better when we are suffering from an infection, but did you also know that antibiotics destroy all your good gut bacteria while killing the bad bugs that are making you sick?
This leaves your digestive system out of whack . Other drugs that also rob your gut of good bacteria include birth control pills, pain medication, and anti-inflammatories.
#2. You have had food poisoning
If you have had to suffer through the misery of food poisoning you won’t soon forget it. Neither will your gut. Food poisoning destroys your healthy bacteria while the bad bacteria moves in and sets up camp. If you have never repopulated your good bacteria after food poisoning, chances are your health will suffer.
#3. You have an unhappy digestive system
Perhaps your gut is always angry, you might suffer from stomach pain, constipation, diarrhea or food intolerance. Any of these things can be a sign that you don’t have enough healthy bacteria in your stomach and you need a probiotic.
#4.You suffer from a skin condition
Chronic dry skin, eczema, or even just dull and listless skin can be a true sign that you do not have enough healthy bacteria in your gut.
#5. You get sick often
Does it seem like you go from one cold to another, and can never seem to stay well? This is a good indication that your immune system is compromised and your gut is not healthy.
#6. You have yeast overgrowth
Any kind of issue with yeast is a sign that you do not have enough good bacteria in your digestive track.
#7. You are depressed
Ninety-five percent of serotonin ( the happy hormone) is made in your gut. If your gut is unhappy and full of bad bacteria, you won’t have enough serotonin. Once you get your gut back where it needs to be, you will find your mood improving and your outlook change.
How To Get More Probiotics
The top food sources of probiotics include:
- Unpasteurized cheese
- Fermented cod liver oil
- Natural pickles
- Apple cider vinegar
You can read more about these foods and learn more about how to get more probiotics into your diet here: Top 12 Probiotic Foods For Better Gut Health
Alternatively, here are some probiotic drink recipes you can make at home: 19 Powerful Probiotic Drink Recipes To Heal Your Gut
The Best Probiotic Supplements
Many of the foods mentioned in the list above are “acquired” tastes so if you can’t get enough probiotics from your diet, then you should consider taking a probiotic supplement.
Probiotic Quality Matters
When you go shopping for a quality probiotic you have to be extremely careful. Many probiotics are nothing but fillers and dead bacteria – no good at all to your gut. The best probiotic supplement is the one that includes the most varied number of strains of bacteria.
Different strains of probiotic bacteria have different functions and are concentrated in a variety of locations in the digestive tract. When a probiotic supplement contains multiple strains they are generally much more effective than those that only contain a couple of strains.
Nutrition Essentials Probiotic: This probiotic formula has the highest number of CFUS per serving (over 200% more than other brands). The proprietary blend of 10 strains of probiotic Bacteria include Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus salivarious, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus paracasei, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Bifidobacterium breve, Bifidobacterium longum, and Streptococcus thermophilus.
Dr. Mercola Complete Probiotics: This popular probiotic contains 70 billion CFUS. It has an 18-month shelf life and can be kept stable at room temperature. This blend also includes Contains the highly effective beneficial strain of bacteria called Lactobacillus Acidophilus DDS-1.
Pro-15: This once-a-day probiotic delivers a powerful punch and will keep your gut bacteria healthy all day long. The carefully selected formula contains 15 strains including Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Streptococcus. The capsules are easy to swallow and do not require refrigeration, making them great for travel.