Research has shown that your digestive tract—commonly referred to as “the gut”— can affect everything from your ability to absorb nutrients from food to seasonal allergies to your mood.
Bacteria in the gut helps keep your digestion healthy and in check, but when something’s off in the gut, such as a bacterial imbalance or a leaky gut, it can contribute to chronic inflammation in other parts of the body causing fatigue, mood swings, autoimmune issues, and digestive distress amongst a host of other possible symptoms.
But how do you support the healing process in an area of the body you can’t even see? Eating a whole food diet is one way and supplementation, when done properly, can be an effective tool in the healing process.
Now let’s be honest here. The supplement aisle at the health food or grocery store can be an overwhelming place! It can be difficult to know which products will be most effective, which is why I recommend doing your homework beforehand. There are many varieties of helpful supplements, but today I want to focus on the power of probiotics.
In a nutshell, probiotics are beneficial bacteria—living microorganisms that keep the gut functioning properly. We now realize our overuse of antibiotics, antimicrobial soaps, and certain aspects of our modern lifestyles have wiped out a huge percentage of the bacterial diversity in our guts, causing us to be sicker and less resilient.
Thankfully, we are learning more about this amazing bacterial world every day and there are several probiotic strains that have been shown to help support digestive function by replenishing our guts with beneficial bacterial and protecting the gut lining from further destruction. Research confirms the effectiveness of probiotics on healing the gut, but there are many types of probiotic supplements.
Probiotics come in the form of capsules and powders and even through fermented foods like yogurt and sauerkraut. When you shop for probiotic supplements, you will often see a potentially confusing mix of numbers and names. The first number listed is usually the amount of "probiotic" in each capsule. It is measured in what's called - Colony forming units - CFU's - simply put, how much of the good stuff is in there. You will see numbers like 5 million all the way up to 300 billion on the label indicating what is in each capsule. They are priced according to the "more is better" method but that isn't the whole story. The strains (types) of bacteria that are inside matter as well.
Probiotics have been shown to help mend leaky gut by conditioning the gut coating and potentially replenishing your natural stores of good bacteria. Since probiotics play such an essential role in digestive function, you may even notice physical changes when you start supplementing with them. It isn't uncommon to see improved bowel motion, increased energy and less gas and bloat once you find the probiotic strains that work well for you.
But probiotics aren’t only beneficial for digestive health. Research studies show that they can help with heart health, eczema, weight loss and mental health!
I have a few "go to" brands but the simplest recommendation for those of you dealing with diarrhea are to look for a fairly diverse (7-15 strains) probiotic that includes the Bifido and Lacto families with at least 50 billion CFU's per capsule to start with daily. Eventually you may not need this many or at all! Your individual health history, lifestyle, food choices and more all contribute what and how much is ideal for you.
To learn more about probiotic supplements and my “go to” brands, be sure to grab my free Digestive Health Supplements guide, which you can get here.
Remember, these are only general recommendations. Please check with your healthcare provider before taking any new medications or supplements and remember that personalized care is the best approach for success as it can take time to find the right combination of supplements!
If you have questions or would like my help in creating your custom roadmap to end your diarrhea and bathroom urgency, just reach out to me at: email@example.com
Or schedule your own free Meet & Greet Consultation here.
Dr. Troy Willis“The Unfortunate Expert”