4 Reasons You Need Probiotics In Your Life

By Unite Fitness Retreat, Brooke Bouwhuis, RDN

Probiotics are a bit of a buzz word these days and with good reason. What are they and do these microscopic critters really deserve our attention?

Beneficial bacteria – probiotics – are the foundation to having healthy digestion. Having healthy digestion is a big deal because how well our body digests what we eat directly affects how we feel. Energy levels, aches and pains, skin issues and even struggling to lose weight can all be linked to digestion.

Many things can cause a disruption in the good and bad bacteria in our gut:

  • Antibiotics– We have all been on them and it’s no secret that good bacteria and bad bacteria are killed when taking an antibiotic.
  • Artificially sweetened beverages (or anything artificially sweetened for that matter) damage gut bacteria.
  • SAD –This one brings me to tear up every time. SAD is an acronym for the Standard American Diet. Yes, our diets filled with fast food, heavily processed food, sugar filled everything, lack of produce and when most of the things we eat come in a crinkly wrapper – well, when we eat SAD, it damages our gut.
  • Stress– Negative emotions can decrease nutrient absorption by changing the amount of blood flow and oxygen your intestines receive.

How do I add probiotics? Probiotics can come from the food you eat or you can take them as a supplement.  Increasing the probiotics you consume add tremendous value to your body.

4 Reasons Why Adding Probiotics is a good idea:

  1. They help you digest better– improving nutrient absorption, who doesn’t need that?!?
  2. Boosts your immune system– increasing the number of good bacteria in your gut helps crowd out the bad bacteria, keeping them in check so it can’t wreak havoc on your body
  3. Keeps your sewer system from backing up. It’s designed to move along for a reason. Probiotics help move things along in a good way.
  4. Heals leaky gut– inflammation in our body is kept at bay (nasty critters can’t translocate across the intestinal wall into our blood stream) when the level of good bacteria in our gut is high.

What should you eat to add probiotic rich foods to your life? It’s easier than you think.

Think kombucha, kefir, sauerkraut, yogurt, kimchi, miso, tempeh– these fermented live foods are packed with probiotics and taste amazing too!  When taking a supplement look for 25-50 billion CFU’s per capsule. Also choose one with at least 5 different strains of probiotic- Diversity is always a good thing.  Probiotics do degrade very rapidly you do get what you pay for, do some research on quality products and you won’t be disappointed with the results.