Taking probiotics, a.k.a ‘live yeast and bacteria’,  is becoming increasingly popular for the health conscious consumer, due to its long list of health and beauty benefits.

The idea behind probiotics is to boost the ‘good bacteria’ – or flora –  in your gut and crowd out the bad. This not only helps with digestion, but also skin and immune health. This means that you don’t need to be suffering from digestion disorders like Crohn’s disease, colitis, or I.B.S to reap the benefits of probiotics.

I’m not saying that you cannot survive without probiotics. However, when the gut is taken over by bad bacteria, you may fall victim to a host of other issues, like acne, digestive problems, leaky gut, candida, bloating, hormonal imbalance, and constant infections.

Causes of weak gut flora

Common causes of a bad bacteria overload in the gut include, taking too many antibiotics (which zap the good bacteria in the gut), or having a diet dominated by refined sugar, beer,  gluten-containing foods, cow’s milk, or artificially processed foods and  flavours.

Many people also suffer from candida overgrowth in the gut, which can be hard for doctors to detect. Symptoms include exhaustion, cravings for sweets, bad breath, white coat on tongue, brain fog, joint pain, loss of stamina, chronic sinus and allergy issues, digestive problems (gas and bloating), a weak immune system and bladder infections.

By eliminating the culprits of this disorder – gluten, wheat, refined sugar and processed foods  -for a month, and adding a probiotic to your diet, you could significantly improve your gut health and get rid of these symptoms.

Some other benefits of including a probiotic in your health regime:

  • Helps prevent allergies
  • Reduces gut inflammation
  • Rebalances the immune system
  • Improves metabolic function
  • Less bloating
  • Increases absorption and helps assimilate nutrients better from whole food nutrition
  • Less cold and infections

Including probiotic rich foods into your diet will also maximise the benefits of taking probiotics.

Probiotic-rich foods include:

  • 100% natural Greek yogurt
  • Sauerkraut
  • Miso soup
  • Kefir
  • Kombucha
  • Sour pickles
  • Microaglae (superfood ocean-based plants such as spirulina, chorella, and blue-green algae)
  • Tempeh
  • Kimchi

I have been taking probiotics for over 10 years now and having  tried and tested many over the years, I recommend looking for premium brands like Primal Defence or Solgar. It is best to take probiotics as directed, first thing in the morning with food.

Here is a quick and easy gut boosting recipe rich in probiotics that is great as a breakfast or a simple snack.