Most of us have heard the term “probiotics” before. But what are probiotics actually? “Wasn’t that something to do with yogurt?” is often the abstract idea that many people have about this term. There are now countless probiotic supplements on the open market and yet many consumers still don't know exactly what they should pay attention to when buying and taking probiotic supplements. Because quality and origin are of essential importance here.
In this article we would like to explain in more detail what probiotics really are and why they are so healthy and important for our body, and especially our intestinal health.
What are probiotics or probiotics?
Probiotics are live microorganisms that we can usually take in the form of dietary supplements or fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir or sauerkraut. There are countless different types of probiotics, although it was impossible to decide on an exact number because there are a variety of strains and types of probiotics. Bacteria, yeast and other microorganisms can be used as probiotics.
The most common types of probiotics include Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. It is important to note that each probiotic can have different effects on the body depending on the type, dosage, formulation, and other factors. It is therefore important to pay attention to the quality, i.e. the origin and processing of the product. Another quality feature is the high bioavailability, i.e. absorption, of the product. It is advisable to use a reliable provider such as BE THE CHANGE.
Consequently, we would like to list some of the most common types of probiotics:
- Lactobacillus acidophilus
- Bifidobacterium bifidum
- Streptococcus thermophilus
- Lactobacillus plantarum
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus
- Saccharomyces boulardii
- Bifidobacterium lactis
- Lactobacillus reuteri
- Lactobacillus casei
- Lactobacillus fermentum
These microorganisms, such as B. the lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria are known to have positive effects on our intestinal health by supporting the balance of the intestinal flora.
Healthy intestinal flora is important for digestion, nutrient absorption, our immune system and many other aspects of our general health. There is also now evidence that probiotics may help treat certain diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis and allergic rhinitis.
Basically, it is important to note that probiotics should be taken in combination with a healthy diet and lifestyle to achieve maximum benefits for our body.
In order to understand the effect of probiotics a little better, we now want to take a closer look at the human intestinal flora.
How does the human intestinal flora work?
The human intestinal flora consists of a complex community of bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microorganisms that live in our intestines. Together, these organisms form what is known as the intestinal microbiome. You can imagine the intestinal microbiome (very simplified) as being similar to our skin. If we don't cleanse our skin or wash it excessively, we destroy the natural skin flora in the long term and lead to rashes, inflammation and illnesses. Just as we care for our skin, we also need to protect and care for our intestinal flora.
The gut microbiome plays an important role in digesting food and absorbing nutrients. The bacteria in the intestinal microbiome help to eliminate harmful substances and pathogens from the body by forming a protective barrier and strengthening our immune system. Healthy intestinal flora is also important for regulating our metabolism, producing hormones and neurotransmitters, and maintaining a healthy intestinal wall. Keeping the intestinal flora healthy is vital for humans.
Impaired intestinal flora can lead to digestive problems, inflammation, allergies, autoimmune diseases and many other health problems. The human intestinal flora can be negatively influenced by various factors, such as: E.g. an unbalanced diet, taking antibiotics, stress, environmental toxins and individual genetics. On the other hand, a healthy diet rich in fiber and probiotic foods can help support the intestinal flora and keep it healthy.
What can damage or disrupt our intestinal flora?
It is not for nothing that the intestine has the reputation of being one of the most important organs in our body, because it represents, so to speak, the intersection between the outside world and our body. Our intestines process the food we eat and it reacts to external influences, such as Pathogens, fungi, viruses and bacteria.
One of the most serious factors that can negatively affect the intestinal flora is taking antibiotics. Antibiotics are very effective at treating infections, but they can also kill beneficial bacteria in the gut, which can lead to “dysbiosis.” The so-called dysbiosis refers to an imbalance in the intestinal flora in which harmful bacteria predominate and healthy bacteria are reduced. This can lead to indigestion, diarrhea, bloating, and other health problems.
An unbalanced diet can also affect the intestinal flora. A diet high in sugar, fat, and processed foods can inhibit the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. This can also lead to dysbiosis and increase the risk of intestinal diseases.
Stress is another factor that can disrupt the intestinal flora. Stress can disrupt the balance of intestinal flora by weakening the immune system and slowing intestinal movements. This can increase susceptibility to infections and the risk of inflammation in the intestines.
Other factors that can affect intestinal flora include alcohol consumption, smoking, environmental toxins and certain medications such as NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).
It is therefore important to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle to keep the natural intestinal flora healthy and reduce the risk of digestive problems and other health problems.
Maintaining healthy intestinal flora and nourishing and strengthening it with high-quality probiotics is therefore essential - especially for our immune system.
What benefits do probiotics have for our immune system?
Probiotics can have a positive effect on our immune system by supporting the balance of intestinal flora and reducing inflammation in the body. A healthy intestinal flora is important for the function of the immune system, as the intestine represents the largest contact surface between our body and the outside world and is therefore an important place for the defense against pathogens.
Several research findings suggest that probiotics may support the immune system in various ways. You can do something like:
- Reduce inflammation in the body: Disturbed intestinal flora can lead to chronic inflammation in the body, which can put a strain on the immune system and contribute to various diseases. Probiotics can help reduce inflammation in the gut and therefore throughout the body. This can help reduce the risk of inflammatory diseases such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.
- Strengthen the barrier function of the intestinal mucosa: Healthy intestinal flora can help strengthen the barrier function of the intestinal mucosa and thus prevent pathogens from entering the body.
- Promote production of antibodies: Probiotics can promote the production of antibodies in the body, which help fight off pathogens and fight infections.
- Improved mental health: There is evidence that probiotics may help improve mental health, particularly in those with anxiety disorders, depression and stress.
- Better BMI: Probiotics can help reduce body weight and body fat percentage and promote muscle growth, especially in people who are physically active.
How can I take probiotics?
There are various natural sources of probiotics that can be incorporated into your diet. Some of the best sources of probiotic foods are:
- Yogurt: Yogurt is a good source of probiotics, primarily Lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidobacteria. However, make sure that the yogurt does not contain high amounts of sugar or artificial additives.
- Sauerkraut: Sauerkraut is made from fermented cabbage. It provides a good source of probiotic bacteria. Sauerkraut contains Lactobacillus bacteria, and it also helps digest carbohydrates.
- Kimchi: Kimchi is a Korean side dish made from fermented vegetables and also contains Lactobacillus bacteria. It is often served as a side dish with meals and can also be used in soups or stews.
- Kombucha: Kombucha is a fermented tea drink rich in probiotic bacteria and yeast. It is often used as an alternative to soft drinks or alcoholic beverages.
- Colostrum: Colostrum is the first milk of every mammal. This milk contains a high concentration of antibodies, proteins and nutrients that the newborn needs to grow and develop a strong immune system. Colostrum naturally contains a variety of beneficial bacteria that can promote digestive health, including Lactobacillus acidophilus, bifidobacteria and other probiotic strains. Our in-house colostrum contains e.g. B. at least 60% antibodies (IgG).
- Tempeh : Tempeh is a fermented soy product and contains a variety of probiotic bacteria. It is also a good source of plant protein and fiber.
You probably don't eat all of these foods regularly or sometimes you just don't have the time to cook them in such a balanced and varied way. Therefore, taking high-quality probiotic supplements definitely makes sense. Particular care must be taken to ensure that the ingredients of these dietary supplements are bioavailable, come from organic farming and come from a reputable supplier.
An excellent example of a high-quality probiotic supplement is: B. our Colostrum & Probiotics capsules.
Swiss Immune® Colostrum & Probiotics
Our Swiss Immune® Colostrum & Probiotics capsules effectively and naturally build up the immune system and strengthen the natural intestinal flora. The high-quality ingredients in the capsules care for the gastrointestinal tract, nourish the intestinal microbiome and counteract digestive irritations.
The colostrum in our capsules is rich in antibodies* and has been supplemented with high-quality probiotic cultures. Our probiotics promote the regeneration of the entire body and offer the organism the best support for general well-being.
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