Probiotics are good bacteria that help keep your gut healthy and protected, and they have a ton of benefits. If you are struggling with constipation, taking probiotics may help heal your gut microbiome and allow you to feel better. Here is a quick look at what probiotics are, how they work, and how they can help your gut health.
What are Probiotics?
Probiotics are healthy, beneficial bacteria that live in and on your body. While most conversations surrounding probiotics center around gut health, these good bacteria can also be found in the mouth, urinary tract, lungs, and skin. Probiotics occur naturally in the human body, and they play an essential role in keeping us healthy. When there is an imbalance of good and bad bacteria, this can cause issues like constipation.
Where Do Probiotics Come From?
Made up of various types of bacteria and yeast, the body has naturally occurring probiotics. Your unique combination of probiotics is known as your microbiome. Some people with certain medical conditions may want to take probiotic supplements to restore balance to their gut microbiomes, but eating certain foods can also increase the good bacteria in your gut. Yogurt and fermented foods are high in probiotics and are known to improve gut health.
Foods Containing Probiotics
Yogurt is one of the most common foods we are told to eat when we are experiencing gut issues, but there is a large selection of probiotic-rich foods you can choose from. Pickles, cottage cheese, kefir, miso, kimchi, sauerkraut, and sourdough bread are just a few things you can add to your diet to ease constipation and increase the number of good bacteria in your gut.
What Role Do Probiotics Play in the Body?
Probiotics are good bacteria that help your immune system fight infection and inflammation. In your gut, they help break down food, manage bad bacteria levels, absorb medications, and create vitamins. Without probiotics, your gut can not do its job, and you may experience illnesses and diseases as a result. There is a growing body of research that suggests probiotics may help ease medical conditions that originate in the gut.
Does Taking Probiotics Ease Constipation?
When you increase your intake of probiotics through food or supplements, you can restore the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut. This can ease constipation and related conditions like diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, and lactose intolerance. If you are constipated, you can eat foods containing live and active cultures. These foods are probiotic-dense and may help ease constipation.
Benefits of Probiotics for Your Gut
If you feel like your body needs an extra boost, there are several benefits you can enjoy when you increase your good bacteria through food and supplements. The most important thing to understand is that your gut health affects your entire body. Gut-related issues like constipation are just one indicator that your intestinal health needs attention. When you take probiotics to heal your gut health, you may also notice improvements in other areas like allergies, mental health, and weight.
By keeping your immune system healthy, probiotics can help prevent diseases that cause constipation. They may also prevent constipation as a side effect of certain medications. If you ate something that didn't agree with you, probiotics will work to prevent upset stomach, cramps, diarrhea, and constipation. When you have a healthy gut with the right probiotics, it's a lot harder to get sick and experience unpleasant symptoms like constipation.
Are Probiotics Safe?
Probiotics occur naturally in the body, and they can be found in a number of common grocery store items. Probiotic supplements are not considered a drug by the FDA, and they are generally considered safe. If you are experiencing constipation, you should talk to your doctor before adding a probiotic supplement to your diet.