Probiotics are live organisms, specifically bacteria and yeast that allow for appropriate digestion, immune function and gut protection. When antibiotics are prescribed and taken all of the useful organisms are wiped out along with the ones we are trying to get rid of. It can take up to 18 months to fully repopulate the gut with good organisms after a 10 day round of antibiotics.
Not all probiotics are created equal! These are live bacteria, so the culture, shipping, storing and testing processes are very important. I highly recommend buying your probiotics from a local practitioner who knows they have been shipped on ice, assayed by a third-party company and kept stored in the refrigerator. Otherwise, you may be buying dead organisms that will do very little. Yogurt and other cultured foods have some probiotics, but typically not enough to be therapeutic.
Reason 1: You are going to take antibiotics. I have found the best probiotic to use while taking an antibiotic is actually the yeast Saccharomyces boulardii. This yeast helps protect your own bacteria from being damaged. After the antibiotics are done you should switch to a high quality L. acidophilus, Bifidobacterium combo for 1-2 months.
Reason 2: You or your children are in school. The Journal of Pediatrics conducted a study showing a significant decrease in cold/flu symptom occurrence and duration with regular probiotic use. This is because probiotics are part of your immune defenses.
Reason 3: You have diarrhea, gas, bloating and/or IBS. Probiotics line the entire intestinal tract especially the colon, so bolstering their numbers promotes more effective digestion.
Reason 4: You or your child has Excema. I have seen many skin conditions, including eczema, improve with probiotics as part of the treatment plan. This is especially true for those that have had recent or chronic antibiotic use.
Reason 5: You have a current and/or recurrent vaginal yeast infections. This is true for yeast infections caused by antibiotic use, hormonal imbalance, and pH imbalance.
If you are interest in obtaining high quality probiotics for any of these reasons, don’t hesitate to contact my office.
Bend Naturopathic Clinic