Want to get healthier in the new year? Add more probiotics to your diet. To convince you on the myriad benefits of upping your intake of probiotic-rich food or taking probiotic supplements, we have put together a handy guide on all-things probiotics, including three surprising facts you should know. 


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Fact #1: Probiotics are a supplement containing live strains of good bacteria

Every time you drink Kombucha, munch on some kimchi or down some delicious sauerkraut, you’re eating live beneficial bacteria – yes, really.

This bacteria is actually very good for you to consume. We have roughly two kilograms of bacteria in our gastrointestinal tract all the time – called our gut microbiome – and this is made up of thousands of strains of both good and bad bacterial flora.

Probiotic supplements top up and support the good bacteria in your gut microbiome, in case eating fermented and gut-friendly foods (such as pickles and tempeh) and drinks (like kombucha and kefir) in your daily diet doesn’t appeal to you.

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Photo: 123RF

Taking probiotic supplements can provide your gut with strains of good bacteria; with each strain assisting in different roles of our daily bodily processes and functions. These health benefits can include digestive and immune support, metabolic balance and healthy weight management, balanced cholesterol and blood sugar levels and support for healthy mood, along with many other benefits. Which brings me to my next point.

Fact #2: Probiotics can help support a number of issues – not just your gut

If you thought probiotics only assist with gut health issues, you’d be mistaken. Naturopath Annaliese Jones explained it best when she said: “good health starts in the gut”.

Why’d she say this? Many health concerns have been linked to an unhealthy gut.

Our gut health affects the majority of our body’s functions, and has been linked to everything from metabolism to mood (serotonin, a neurotransmitter that contributes to feelings of happiness, is made in the gut), skin issues (there is evidence to show skin issues can stem from an unhealthy gut) and the immune system (80 per cent of our immune system is in our gut).

Given our gut bacteria’s influence on these key areas of our health, it’s safe to say maintaining good gut health is important!

Photo: 123RF

Fact #3: Many people can benefit from some kind of good quality probiotic supplement

Whether you’re experiencing stress at work, having tummy troubles or trying to fight off the office cold that’s going around, chances are at some point you may benefit from upping your probiotic intake.

While everyone can benefit from restoring the balance of good bacteria in the gut, some people may benefit from taking a probiotic supplement more than others, such as Brands InnerShine Pre+Probiotics available online, or Himalaya FlorAvani capsules available on iHerb. 

Probiotics may benefit:

• Those who experience poor digestive or bowel health
• Those experiencing bloating or wind
• Travellers that have experienced upset digestion
• People with intolerances or sensitivities
• Those with poor immunity

Note: Do consult your doctor before consuming any probiotic supplements, especially if you’re pregnant or have underlying health issues. 

Watch this video to find out the best probiotic-rich foods to add to your diet:


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Text: www.bauersyndication.com.au