7 Reasons You Need Probiotics

Do you suffer from a weakened immune system? Rheumatoid arthritis? GI issues, or Skin conditions? 

 We often hear the term “probiotic,” especially when it comes to yogurt and its impact on digestive health, and science is continually finding new health benefits of probiotics. To help you sort through the facts, here are 7 proven benefits of probiotics, and how to get more of them in our diets.

What are probiotics, and how are they helpful? Also referred to as “good bacteria,” probiotics are live microorganisms that exist naturally in the gut. Probiotics alter the permeability of the intestinal wall, and help to keep pro-inflammatory compounds from entering the bloodstream. As a result, they help prevent a wide range of chronic conditions, and have been shown to help improve:

 

 1.) Weight loss/weight control: Probiotics can improve blood sugar control, affect leptin sensitivity (a hormone that helps regulate appetite). Women seem particularly sensitive to the effects of probiotics.

2.) Boost mood, fight depression: Taking probiotics is linked with lower levels of anxiety & depression, and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

3.) Rheumatoid arthritis: Probiotics appear to help reduce several markers of inflammation in the body.

4.)Boost immune system: Studies have shown that taking a probiotic may result in fewer (about 40% fewer) colds.

 5.) Gastrointestinal & digestive health: Probiotics help with digestive issues including bloating, gas, and diarrhea, as well as chronic conditions like irritable bowel syndrome. Probiotics may also help maintain remission/prevent relapse of ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

6.) Urinary tract infections & yeast infections:Probiotic treatment can restore the balance of microflora that may be altered by a variety of factors, including birth control pills and antibiotics.

7.) Skin conditions: Probiotics help with skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, and rosacea.

When choosing a Probiotic supplement you want to make sure it contains enough CFU’s or colony forming units. Products with 25 – 35 billion CFU’s are most affective at treating the chronic conditions listed about. 

 


 

Weekly Abstracts:

Lower Intake of Omega-3 Fatty Acids Linked to Increase Frequency of Migraine Attacks

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Migraine is a primary headache disorder that affects the neurovascular system. Recent studies have shown that consumption of some fatty acids such as omega-3 fatty acids improves migraine symptoms. The aim of the present study is to assess the association between usual intake of fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and saturated fatty acids (SFA) with the frequency of migraine attacks.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: 105 migraine patients with age ranging from 15 to 50 years participated in this cross-sectional study. Usual dietary consumption was assessed by using a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). Moreover, frequency of migraine attacks during 1 month period was determined in all participants. Data had been analyzed using independent sample t-test and linear regression test with adjustment of confounding variables.

RESULTS: In this study, we found that lower intake of EPA (? = -335.07, P = 0.006) and DHA (? = -142.51, P = 0.001) was associated with higher frequency of migraine attacks. In addition, we observed similar relationship either in men or women. No significant association was found between dietary intake of SFA and the frequency of migraine attacks (? = -0.032, P = 0.85).

CONCLUSIONS: Frequency of migraine attacks was negatively associated with dietary intake of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. No significant relationship was found between SFA intake and migraine frequency. Further studies are required to shed light on our findings.

 

Protective effect of probiotics in the treatment of infantile eczema.

Abstract

The aim of the present study was to provide evidence for the application of probiotics in the prevention and treatment of infantile eczema by exploring changes in the intestinal Bifidobacteria levels and the Scoring Atopic Dermatitis (SCORAD) index prior and subsequent to treatment with probiotics in infants with eczema. A total of 40 infants with eczema were randomly divided into treatment and control groups. Prior and subsequent to the treatment, the SCORAD index was evaluated and the content of Bifidobacterium bifidum in the stool of each infant in the two groups was quantified using 16S rRNA/DNA quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis. After four weeks of treatment with B. bifidum triple viable capsules, the levels of B. bifidum increased sharply (P<0.05) and the SCORAD index was notably reduced (P<0.05) as compared with the values prior to treatment. By contrast, neither the content of B. bifidum nor the SCORAD index changed significantly in the control group after four weeks (P>0.05). Following treatment, the levels of B. bifidum in the stools of the treatment group were significantly higher than those in the stools of the control group (P<0.05), and the SCORAD index was significantly lower than that of the control group (P<0.05). In conclusion, probiotic supplementation has a positive effect on the prevention and treatment of infantile eczema.

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