Probiotics Past And Present
The idea of the probiotics is one that was presented in the early 1900s by Nobel laureate Elie Metchnikoff proposed the concept of health improvement through the consumption of microorganisms. Deemed the “father or probiotics”, Metchnikoff paved the way for the study of the probiotics that we’ve come to know today. He believed that microorganisms, in certain strains and doses, could positively influence the body’s ability to fight certain diseases as well as help support the most important bodily functions as a whole.
Today, doctors and scientists are still working to learn more about all the ways in which probiotics can positively impact the general well-being and overall good health of the human body. With improvements in science and medicine, we’ve gotten closer to learning about each and every way that probiotics can seriously benefit the human body.
What Is A Probiotic?
Probiotics are certain groups of good bacteria or yeast that live inside each of us – in particular, our digestive system. Though it’s easy to hear about bacteria and jump to the conclusion that they’re something bad, it’s actually a pretty common misconception that all bacteria is harmful and will cause disease.
In fact, according to WebMD, that’s just simply not always the case. In fact, several kinds of bacteria – including probiotics – are actually very good for you and can provide support to several of your body’s systems.
Additionally, it should be noted that your body is absolutely teeming with bacteria. In fact, it’s thought that there are actually more bacteria in your intestines than there are cells in your body.
The human body is complete with tons of diverse types of bacteria strains, both good and bad. Probiotics are certainly the former; because of their unique ability to maintain the health of the gut and digestive system, as well as bodily functions such as the cardiovascular and immune system, probiotic supplements are something that many people are considering adding to their diet.
Probiotics can be found and introduced into the diet in several ways. There are certain types of fermented foods that are probiotic-laden, such as yogurt, specific kinds of cheeses, and kimchi.
Of course, others prefer to get their probiotics via a supplement or as part of their daily vitamin and mineral intake. This particular bacteria is often recommended for those who face digestive troubles or are looking for a general health boost.
Why Take Probiotics?
If you’re considering adding a probiotic supplement to your every day diet, you’ll probably want to think about where your body – and your digestive health – needs the most support. If you’re looking simply to help promote your digestive and gut health, a probiotic can be a good way not only to bring good bacteria to your system, but to help prevent the growth of bad bacteria within your digestive tract and overall bodily microbiome.
If you’re someone who has suffered or is suffering from digestive related issues, you might want to think about the benefits a probiotic can have on your overall health and well-being. It’s very important to talk about these kinds of questions with a trusted medical professional, as they will be able to help you identify the ways in which you can add probiotics in to your diet so that they will be the most useful for you.
It’s important to note, of course, that not all probiotics work the same or will have the same affect on you as they do someone else. That’s why it’s important to consider your personal health when thinking about adding a probiotic to your diet. There are many strains of probiotic that may affect your gut differently depending on your overall health or any pre-existing conditions.
Take the time to think about your current diet when considering which type of probiotic you want to add to your diet. Are there certain foods that you can’t eat due to dietary restrictions? Do you have any allergies? Are you bulking up for athletic purposes? Each of these questions – and more – are very important to think about when trying to find the probiotic that is right for you.
Types of Probiotics
Though you might think of probiotics as a single type of bacteria, there are actually dozens of probiotic bacteria ‘groups’ that might benefit the human digestive system.
As noted by MayoClinic, the two most common groups of bacteria include Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. From there each group has several different strains of probiotic that may affect the gut in different ways.
The most common of the two aforementioned groups is Lactobacillus, which can be found in yogurt and other fermented foods. Certain strains of this bacteria may help those with diarrhea or lactose intolerance.
Bifidobacterium is the bacteria group that is most found in dairy products, such as certain types of cheeses. This group is thought to help ease the symptoms of such diseases as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
How Long Does It Take For Probiotics To Work?
If you’ve already discovered the right probiotic for you and are looking to add it into your diet, it’s important to understand how to get the most out of your supplement.
It’s thought that the best time to take probiotics is right before or right after a meal. However, once you’ve taken your supplement and are taking them regularly, how long will it take for you to see results?
As noted by Gutspace, this all depends on both transporting the bacteria to the gut and the generation time, or time it takes for the bacteria to double. Both Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium have relatively short generation times, with strains doubling their numbers within just three hours. This means that they can start working right away, given the probiotic is taken with food.
Probiotics provide some seriously useful benefits for the human body. With their ability to help promote good gut bacteria and prevent the growth of bad bacteria, probiotics are thought to be able to help promote and support the overall health of the human body and some of its most important systems.
When considering how long it will take for your probiotics to work, it all comes down to how and when you take your supplement. If given the right environment (ie: with the right amount of food, water and warmth), your probiotics can start working immediately to help bring good bacteria to your gut.
Josh is a qualified personal trainer based in Sydney Australia. He is passionate about helping people reach their health and fitness goals through proper nutrition choices. Josh also holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Juris Doctor from The University of Melbourne.