List of Benefits of Probiotics

by Jody Braverman

About Jody Braverman

Jody Braverman is a health and fitness professional and writer in Seattle. She has been a personal trainer and yoga instructor for almost a decade and is passionate about movement and helping people lead active, healthy lives.

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Overview

The human body, specifically the large intestine, contains its own good bacteria that help fight infections and disease in the body. Probiotics are dietary supplements that contain beneficial bacteria that can supplement the good bacteria already found in the body. This can increase its effectiveness, providing a range of benefits.

Improve Intestinal Problems

According to the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide, studies have found that Lactobacillus GG, a specific probiotic strain, improves cases of infectious diarrhea in children and infants. Probiotics help normalize bowel function and can help relieve constipation. They help cleanse the intestinal tract by dislodging accumulated matter and helping to flush it from the system. Probiotics are also helpful in the treatment of intestinal disorders such as Crohn's disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Better Immune Response

The good bacteria in probiotics acts as antigens that are made available to the immune system and help fight a range of diseases and conditions. When they attach to the intestinal walls, probiotics make the environment mildly acidic, which helps retard the growth of disease-causing bacteria. This enables the immune system to do less work in the intestines so that it can focus on fighting disease in other areas of the body. Probiotics also stimulate antibody production, providing protection and defense against infection.

Improved Urogenital Health

The use of antibiotics, spermicides and birth control pills can disrupt the normally acidic environment of the vagina, making it a target for the growth of harmful microorganisms. Probiotics can help restore the natural balance of the environment, reducing your risk of bacterial vaginosis, yeast infection and urinary tract infection.

Improved General Health

A study conducted in Sweden in 2005 treated a group of employees with Lactobacillus reuteri and another group with a placebo. Their findings revealed that the group treated with Lactobacillus reuteri missed work less frequently because of respiratory or gastrointestinal illness than the control group.

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This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.