Probiotics have gained a bit of press coverage over the last few years, and press worthy they are! If you don’t know what Probiotics are, they are the good bacteria and yeasts (or micro-organisms) that live within our body that help us function at our best in so many areas of our health!
Having adequate good micro-organisms such as good bacteria within our body helps our digestive function, our mental health, our immune system, and they even help keep our oral health, skin health and reproductive systems healthy!
The word probiotic comes from two Latin words put together – The words ‘Pro’ and ‘Biota’. When they are put together they mean ‘For Life’.
There are many things in our lives that can put our balance of good bacteria out of balance.
We live in a very busy and fast-paced world that is obsessed with being clean and ‘germ-free’. Our water systems have chemicals such as chlorine (sometimes necessary to make our water safer for drinking), which is put in there to kill harmful bacteria and other micro-organisms that may cause harm to our health.
The chlorine also will kill the good guys too and we are often drinking this water unfiltered, therefore it can cause some damaged to our good bacteria in our body too.
We often use things like bacterial hand washes on our skin. This can slowly have some effect on our body’s good bacteria levels.
Our cleaning products commercially, and in the home, are very high in harmful chemicals designed to ‘kill bacteria’, which can also affect the good bacteria living in our body.
There are many other things that can change the balance of the good micro-organisms in our body, such as stress (how often do you take time out from your busy life?
And what is your work environment like?), our diet, medications like antibiotics and hormonal medications like the pill will also change the types and levels of good micro-organisms in our body.
Antibiotics are designed (and often vital!) to kill harmful bacteria that has infected our body, but unfortunately, the antibiotic medications do not always leave the good bacteria alone and kill them too.
Including probiotics in your diet can help to replenish the good bacteria into your body and prevent an overgrowth of harmful bacteria or yeast.
They will help your digestive system to digest and process food effectively, helping to reduce bloating and make bowel movements regular and normal.
If you have had to take antibiotics it is advisable to take probiotics during and for a few months afterwards to get your body’s balance of good bacteria back to optimum.
There are many ways to include probiotics in our diet and lifestyle.
For many, simply taking probiotic supplements may the easiest, but there are many foods that also provide probiotics too.
Some of these include yoghurt (look for live cultures, pot set, and the least processed yoghurts in the fridge, and ones with the longest best before dates), sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, kefir, pickles, tempeh and miso.
Most of these foods are very easy to include in our diet!
They go well with other fresh foods and can often be tailored to individual’s dietary tastes. There are times when supplementation makes including adequate probiotics in our diet easier.
Did you know that you can even get cleaning products that include probiotics? So instead of killing ‘99% of the germs’, we can increase the good guys on the surfaces instead who will work their magic and bring balance, making sure the bad ones are not the ones that grow back.
Ever noticed how the toilet is cleaned with bleach-containing cleaners gets a bad smell back after a day or so? Why not try a probiotic cleaner next time?
You might find after a while your bathroom smells sweeter for longer!
If you need some guidance or need to chat about probiotics and how to include more in your diet or are wondering if you might need some supplementation, or how to include some more natural and effective cleaning methods in your home, come and chat with us in store!
We love to help you with honest and friendly suggestions!
What is the deal with Pre Biotics?
Most of us have heard of probiotics, but many of us may not have heard of prebiotics.
Prebiotics are in fact just as important as Probiotics for our gut and the effective function of all those good guys, Probiotics. Prebiotics actually keep the Probiotics alive.
Put simply, Prebiotics feed the little good micro-organisms that are living and helping our health in so many ways, we are still finding out about!