Bloating and Probiotics
Bloating happens! For some, it happens on occasion and for others, it becomes part of their daily life. Sure we know that eventually the bloating will subside, but only to return again. For those who don’t take probiotics as part of their everyday wellness plan, the above can sound like a very familiar story. But if you are taking probiotics, bloating has the potential to be a thing of the past.
Bloating can have many causes, here are the main common reasons(1):
- Stomach Infection
- Food Intolerance
- SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth)
But here’s how to tell if an unhealthy gut is what’s causing your bloating.
- Upset stomach: Stomach disturbances like gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and heartburn can all be signs of an unhealthy gut. A balanced gut will have less difficulty processing food and eliminating waste(2).
- A high-sugar diet: sugars and processed foods can decrease the number of good bacteria in your gut(2).
- Unintentional weight changes: Weight changes that occur without trying can be a sign of an unhealthy gut. An imbalanced gut can impair your body’s ability to absorb nutrients, regulate blood sugar, and store fat(2).
- Sleep disturbances or constant fatigue: An unhealthy gut may be the reason for a not so good night’s sleep! The majority of the body’s serotonin, a hormone that affects mood and sleep, is produced in the gut(2)
- Skin irritations: Inflammation in the gut caused by an unbalanced diet or food allergies may cause an increase of certain proteins to travel out into the body from the gut, which can, in turn, irritate your skin(2).
- Autoimmune conditions: If you have an unhealthy gut, studies have shown that this may increase systemic inflammation and disrupt the proper functioning of your immune system(2).
- Food intolerances: If you have food intolerances, it may be because you have a large amount of poor bacteria in your gut! This can lead to difficulty digesting the trigger foods and unpleasant symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and nausea(2).
How can probiotics help with bloating?
Not having the right bacteria in your gut can affect how you digest your foods and overall how your digestive system works. But when you introduce good bacteria into your gut this can help with digestion and promote intestinal function.
What is a probiotic?
Probiotics are strains of beneficial bacteria. Once ingested they will make their way into the gut where they disburse and start to colonize. Colonization allows the good bacteria to continue multiplying and dispersing its effects on the host.
Probiotic Pro Tips:
- Use a probiotic that has an acid-resistant capsule. An acid-resistant capsule allows the probiotic to make it to the but where its benefits are received.
- Look for probiotics that have at least 30 billion CFU (Colony Forming Units). The amount of CFU’s your probiotic has is important! You need billions of CFU’s to have a colony of good bacteria form in your gut.
- Find a probiotic that is refrigerated. If your probiotic is not refrigerated that means all the bacteria inside is dead. This does you no good as they won’t form a colony.
- Pair a Prebiotic with a Probiotic. A prebiotic will help nourish the probiotic and aid in the growth of a healthy colony of bacteria.
Bloating is manageable if you have the right tool! Discuss with your doctor about bloating today to see if a probiotic is right for you.
- Villines, Z. (2020, January 14). Abdominal bloating: Causes, symptoms and remedies. Retrieved April 9, 2020, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321869#causes
- Dix, M. (2020, March 26). 7 Signs of an Unhealthy Gut and 7 Ways to Improve Gut Health. Retrieved April 9, 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/gut-health#signs-and-symptoms