Are Probiotics The Secret to Good Health?
'Gut health' is the wellness industry's buzzword of choice right now. With millennials turning to probiotics more than prior generations and UK sales of digestive remedies set to reach £333 million by 2021, it appears that the future of wellness lie in the gut.
Our gut naturally contains trillions of bacteria, which is equivalent to 1kg or a bag of potatoes. This bacteria can play a key role in keeping us healthy and we've begun to understand the different health benefits that these bacteria actually provide us with.
Brand new PRESS Pink Probiotic Water+ will be available exclusively at Darwin and Wallace sites from 27th March. Tickets are now available to the launch party at No 29 Power Station West on 4th April, where there will be a talk from Lily Soutter, a complimentary cocktail and a floristry workshop!
Our gut bacteria can become compromised due to taking antibiotics, ageing, stress, sterile environments, food poisoning, low fibre diets and even gut conditions including IBS. Whilst it’s not possible to define with confidence what exactly a healthy profile of gut bacteria looks like, broad patterns are in fact emerging. More diversity is likely to be better because a diverse ecosystem is generally more resilient. Therefore supplementing with probiotics may help to increase this diversity, however, there are a few caveats to consider before purchasing a probiotic.
THE BENEFITS OF PROBIOTICS
Probiotics are an extremely complex topic and seem to work in a very strain-specific manner. And whilst we don’t all need to take probiotics, there have been some conditions where they have been researched to have beneficial effects:
Interesting review studies have shown that taking probiotics can make colds last for shorter lengths of time 2. Bacillus coagulans is the strain we include within our Pink Probiotic Water + which has has immune stimulating properties. Research suggests that this strain may enhance our immune system’s ability to fight against respiratory tract infections 3.
Research suggests that when probiotics are taken by breastfeeding mothers and/or their young children, there was a reduction in risk of eczema in children 4.
MOOD & MENTAL HEALTH
Did you know that 90% of serotonin is located within the gut and research suggests that our gut bacteria may influence production? Whilst this is an exciting area, more research is needed to determine probiotics’ efficacy for managing depressive symptoms.
Probiotics may help with those who are lactose intolerant. Some studies have shown that certain strains my help to increase tolerance 5.
Between 3-25% of the population complain of IBS symptoms and probiotics are currently under study with promising results. Interesting research suggests that Bacillus coagulans found in our Pink Probiotic Water + may improve IBS symptoms such as abdominal pain and bloating in those suffering with IBS 6.
Interestingly the use of probiotics in the prevention and treatment of diarrhoea has a good science-base for some probiotic strains. The strains S. boulardii and L.rhamnosus GG have been shown to cut the risk of antibiotic associated-diarrhea by more than half.
Studies are limited when it comes to constipation, however evidence suggest that supplementing with L. casei rhamnosus Lcr35 and L. casei Shirota seems promising, so it’s worth encouraging sufferers to try products containing these probiotics strains.
WHAT SHOULD WE LOOK FOR WHEN CHOOSING A PROBIOTIC?
In order to be effective, probiotics need to influence the balance of our gut bacteria. This means that bacteria must be able to survive their passage through the acidic stomach, and survival rates can vary between strains. Look out for probiotics on the market, which emphasise their effective delivery methods and those that guarantee the amount present in each pill up until the expiration date. It is also important to think about taking probiotics regularly and in a sufficient dose to allow the probiotic to exert a health effect.
At PRESS our Pink Probiotic Water + includes a hardly strain called Bacillus Coagulans which is heat and acid resistant. This mean that the probiotic bacteria within our water reaches the gut intact to exert its beneficial effect 1.
*The information within this article is not a substitute for medical advice. If you are concerned about your health or have any symptoms you should see your GP/healthcare provider.