My Journey to Discovering the Healing Power of Probiotics

What would you do if I told you there was an easy, and safe, way to supercharge your immune system, prevent and treat UTIs, improve optimal digestive function, and protect your body against food-borne illnesses?

Something quick and painless as taking a probiotic capsule with your daily multivitamin, or adding a cup of yogurt with active cultures to your breakfast, can get you functioning at a level you never knew possible.

Probiotics have a history too

Probiotics have been steadily growing in popularity since the 1990s and have really taken off within the last few years. I remember first hearing Jamie Lee Curtis mention the term in a yogurt commercial a few years ago, but honestly did not think about them any further. Until recently, that is.

Eating bacteria is not as bad as people believe

Probiotics are live bacteria that are quite beneficial to a healthy body and immune system. I know you are thinking, “You want me to eat bacteria?” But don’t be alarmed! Our bodies are full of safe bacteria that are essential to our survival.

Probiotics are frequently referred to as “helpful bacteria” since they help to keep your internal ecosystem balanced and digestive system operating at its best. Think of probiotics as a great staff in an office: the business will function at its best when you have all of the positions filled – and filled well.

Read also – 6 Healthiest and Tastiest Yogurt Alternatives

Long battle with a food allergy

I was by no means a picky eater growing up and never had an issue with a single food I consumed. It wasn’t until early adulthood that that started to change. Over a span of a few years, I developed an allergy to avocados, ripe bananas, cantaloupe, pineapple and lactose, the sugar in milk.

If you have never had to deal with a food allergy, you are lucky. The process it took to figure out the root of my violent reactions was long and, several times, misdiagnosed.

The doctor I had seen since childhood was baffled and threw everything at me from Pepto-Bismol to Nexium. Nothing worked. I missed out on so much during my first year of college and even ran into trouble with attendance.

Not only was difficult to explain I missed class again because a nameless ailment kept me from getting too far from a restroom, it was embarrassing. It got to the point where I stopped trying to explain and even dropped a few classes.

Probiotics help to restore internal bacteria

With the series of medications I was trying, I would often get a “sour stomach.” A queasy unease churned in my stomach and I felt zapped of energy the entire time I was awake. This went on for just over a year before I switched to my first “adult” doctor.

She was the first person to tell me that antibiotics and prescriptions can completely wreck your internal bacteria. She recommended I look into a probiotic supplement and, hey, I am glad I did.

A miracle happened

I must admit it, I went a little overboard in the beginning. I added yogurt with active cultures to just about every meal and started taking an over-the-counter probiotic I found at the pharmacy near my house. Within a day or two, I noticed the churning sour stomach and general “blah” feeling subsiding, and my energy returning. I felt like a new person.

I had gone for so long thinking that I was destined to feel terrible all the time. I did not believe I could ever feel so good again. As time progressed, I found it was difficult to find time for yogurt every day, but I have kept with the once a day supplement.

Types of probiotics

Overall, there are two major types of probiotics: Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Both of which can be found together in most over-the-counter capsules. Lactobacillus, the most common probiotic, is the kind you will find in yogurt and a number of fermented foods.

Different strains of this bacteria have been known to create powerful antioxidants that help offset toxic products made in your body during digestion. Other strains have been known to fight against foodborne pathogens and improve liver function by lowering the pH levels of urine.

Bifidobacterium can also be found in dairy products, and has been known to relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other gastrointestinal conditions. This probiotic has been known to aid in the prevention of the growth of harmful bacteria and yeasts in the large and small intestines.

In addition to helping promote bacterial balance, Bifidobacterium also helps in the breakdown of intricate carbohydrates, fats and proteins during digestion. It also creates enzymes that break down larger molecules into smaller components that can then be easily absorbed into the body for nutrition or burned for energy.

Read also – 8 Natural Ways to Heal Your Digestion

Now, you must be aware that not all foods or supplements contain the same amounts or strains of probiotics. As with all medications and dietary supplements, it is vital to closely follow the instructions printed on the package.

Through a little diligence and label reading on your part, you can easily find the right foods and supplements for you and your needs. And remember to talk to your doctor.