How To Be Sure Your Probiotic Is Getting To Your Gut
Photo credit: Dr. Perlmutter
Are you spending time browsing the vitamin aisle, trying to figure out which Probiotic will work best for your personal health and wellness needs? There are dozens of choices, and while all of them promise to support healthy digestion, clear skin and more energy, how do you know that your probiotic is working? And what actually happens to a probiotic after you ingest it?
Bacteria is commonly thought of as negative. There are plenty of harmful bacteria that can lead to a number of risks when it comes to the bacteria inside of your body. But with harmful bacteria comes beneficial bacteria called Probiotics. Research suggests that choosing a quality probiotic will help with digestion and help you maintain a healthy gut.
Probiotics are friendly bacteria that make up the microbiome in your gut or digestive tract and are the key to good health, especially to good digestion and regularity. Bacteria, though naturally present in the body, accounts for two pounds of bio-mass in your intestines, which need a balance of beneficial bacteria to promote good health.
Levels of probiotics decrease with age and can also be affected by other factors, including a poor diet and obesity. As the levels of probiotics decrease, problematic bacteria in the gut thrive, which can lead to digestive problems like bloating and gas.
A Probiotics Journey.
It’s important to remember that probiotics are live organisms; they need to survive the manufacturing process but also the journey from your mouth all the way to your lower gut, where it flourishes and repopulates.
Right after you ingest a probiotic, digestive enzymes in your saliva are already beginning to break it down. In your stomach, this beneficial bacteria comes into direct contact with strong stomach acids that are necessary to break down and digest food, which is bad news for the probiotic – most bacteria do not survive this acidic environment. The strains that do make it move into the small intestines, which is less acidic than the stomach, where it flourishes and repopulates the good bacteria in your gut. Whew!
Making sure your Probiotic can make the journey.
In order to make sure your probiotic can withstand digestive enzymes and acidic environments, turn to one that is offered in an enteric-coated capsule. This kind of capsule helps to protect probiotics from the stomach’s acidity.
A superior probiotic will not only be made of enteric-coasted capsules, but will also offer non-GMO bacterial strains, be offered in a vegetarian formula (free of milk, soy and wheat), and contain five species of CFUs. CFUs, or colony-forming units, can further ensure the survival and colonization of this beneficial bacteria in your gut.