This week, my kids both needed antibiotics. I didn't make the decision to give them without some serious questions, and it was absolutely necessary this time. (But that's a whole other conversation for another day.) Two separate doctors said they wanted to make sure that the girls were "eating yogurt" or taking a "good probiotic" during their courses of treatment to help keep things balanced.
Have you heard similar advice from a practitioner when you were prescribed antibiotics? Probably. And it's not totally wrong.
And now we're seeing many of the mainstream brands adding probiotics to their everyday products.
I've seen it in the obvious places: yogurt, other dairy products, and even in some cereals and pastas. There is an entire line of "probiotic skincare" and now some of the big name cosmetic companies are jumping on the popularity of this buzz word! But I have some unfortunate news:
Taking a probiotic - or slathering it on your skin - could be a total waste of time and money.
Here's the thing: If you’re taking “a good probiotic,” you are clearly taking a proactive approach to your health, probably understand the benefits of a healthy gut, and are looking for benefits. It's a great step in the process.
But if you are not also supporting the system that these microscopic powerhouses require to flourish,
💩 you are literally flushing money down the toilet. 💩
Probiotics are microscopic organisms that make up what we call the microbiome. They have specific environmental requirements to thrive just like every other living thing. For these microbes to do their job, and offer the greatest benefit to the human gut, they need a few things in their habitat to stay alive and thrive:
Pre-biotic compounds: Plant fiber: think of this as the fertilizer for the soil)
Protective Polyphenols: Plant micronutrients that feed and protect the organisms themselves
Post-biotic compounds: Protective compounds created by beneficial microorganisms when they are functioning properly.
A HEALTHY GUT:
🔅 Absorbs nutrients properly
😴 Influences healthy sleep cycles
🤩 Produces happy and calming hormones
😌 Helps manage and eliminate stress hormones
🔄 Detoxifies the body efficiently
🔄 Digests food and eliminates waste in a timely, comfortable manner.
What if you could help mood, motivation, metabolism, mental clarity, focus and calm, just by giving these little organisms exactly what they need? If you are only taking a probiotic, it's simply not enough. You will take the probiotic, and flush it down the toilet 4-12 hours later (and if it's longer than that, we REALLY NEED TO TALK!) with little to no benefit.
The recommendation for a healthy gut is to consume at least 5 servings of vegetables, AND 3 servings of fruit per day, consistently.
Do you eat enough plants every day to get all the benefits of a diverse and healthy gut ecology?
I know I don’t.
It’s almost impossible with my busy lifestyle, and it's part of my job!! So how do we get the benefits of the helpful microorganisms that create a healthy gut ecology?
Most people supplement.
If you're already doing it by buying a probiotic or purchasing products with added probiotics, that's a start. I choose a protocol that includes all the appropriate components in one product so I can take it and go about my day.
If you're looking for more info about gut health and supplement protocols, check out this article, or send me an email!
If you think you are ready for changes that will stick, schedule an exploration call to see how we could work together!