...By Pelumi Emmanuel for TDPel Media.
We all know that probiotics are nature’s little guys–but you may need to learn that they offer various benefits for women specifically.
Our gut microbiome is our first line of defense against many health challenges and imbalances, from GI distress, skin conditions, hormonal issues, weight gain, and more. But it can be challenging to keep that little ecosystem in a happy place.
Probiotics can help your body digest and absorb nutrients better. They also help maintain a healthy ratio of bacteria in your digestive tract and may reduce the number of yeast infections you get.
In addition, probiotics can help you prevent constipation, especially if the flora imbalance in your gut causes it. Cleveland Clinic says they can help you balance hormones and boost your immune system.
If you need more probiotics in your diet, take a supplement daily. Look for one that contains various strains and ensure it’s high-quality.
It would help if you also looked for probiotics that our bodies need, like a probiotic with human bacterial strains, which can colonize your body and stay there longer than non-human bacterial cultures. Choose a probiotic free of dairy and other animal proteins, soy, gluten, yeast or fillers to ensure you get a clean product.
In addition to helping your digestive health, probiotics can improve your mental health and even help you get pregnant. They’re accommodating for women with mood disorders like depression or anxiety, says Fasig.
Prevent Bacterial Vaginosis
Bacterial vaginosis is one of the most common vaginal infections in women. BV can cause itching, discharge and pain. Diet, medication, hormones and sexual activity often trigger it.
However, antibiotics are not always the best way to cure BV as they can cause symptoms to worsen and may lead to recurrence. 80% of women with BV will get a recurrence after antibiotic treatment.
A bacterial imbalance in the vaginal microbiome can trigger BV. Specific probiotic strains can help keep this imbalance in check by supporting the vaginal microbiome and helping to maintain a healthy pH level.
In a study, women who received an oral probiotic formula and a 7-day course for BV had a higher success rate than those who just got the antibiotics alone. They also had fewer recurrences than those who took antibiotics only.
Research shows that consuming probiotics can help with preventing BV, but not only that, they can be used to improve your vaginal health and fertility as well. They are a safe and effective way to treat BV, but taking them alongside a good diet and other lifestyle changes is essential.
Help With Acne
Probiotics can calm inflammation and help with acne by reducing the production of an overactive bacteria called propionibacterium that triggers breakouts. They also reduce oxidative stress, which is an essential factor in flights.
When choosing the right probiotics, it’s best to look for a clinically proven blend that’s been tested and shown to improve your gut-skin axis. Ideally, you’ll get a combination of Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus strains backed by science (but feel free to go for a specific Lacto-Bifido blend if you can afford it).
Oral supplements also improve your skin’s barrier function and reduce water loss, which can cause dryness. This can make your complexion more resilient and less prone to breakouts.
Help With Weight Loss
Probiotics are live bacteria that help the body maintain balance naturally. They’re a healthy addition to any diet and are often found in yogurt and kefir.
They can improve several health issues, including weight loss and fertility. They can also help reduce inflammation and promote a better gut microbiome.
A good probiotic can help you lose weight and keep it off by reducing fat absorption, boosting metabolism, and suppressing appetite. This is partly because certain probiotics reduce leptin levels, a hormone that suppresses appetite and promotes fat storage.
The key is to find a supplement that contains suitable strains of bacteria for your body. Some effective probiotics include Lactobacillus fermentum, Lactobacillus amylovorus, and Pediococcus pentosaceus LP28.
Research suggests that women with a low bacterial diversity in their guts are more likely to become obese than those with a high microbial diversity. Probiotics can rebalance the gut microbiome, making it more conducive to weight loss.
Help With Fertility
Women have a unique microbiome that is vital to their reproductive health. Dysbiosis, which can happen when your gut community is imbalanced or overrun with harmful bacteria, can disrupt a woman’s hormone levels and negatively impact her fertility.
However, probiotics can help improve a woman’s fertility. They can help manage pathogenic bacterial infections during pregnancy and prevent complications during birthing.
Besides preventing bacterial infections, probiotics can also help to improve a woman’s overall fertility by balancing the vaginal and gastrointestinal microflora. They can boost folate production and support a woman’s general immunity, both critical factors in conceiving a baby.
To optimize your fertility and support a healthy birthing experience, make sure you’re taking probiotics specifically designed for women’s health and containing diverse strains. You can also incorporate meditation into your regimen, which can help regulate your hormone levels and reduce stress, which affects a woman’s ability to conceive.