Probiotics and gastro-intestinal issues including inflammation

Probiotics and IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is common, affecting more women than men, and between 8% and 13% of all women at some point.
IBS symptoms are a mixture of abdominal discomfort or pain, bloating and trouble with bowel habits. Although it is different from, and doesn’t develop into, the much more serious Inflammatory Bowel Disease, IBS can be a long-lasting problem that interferes with your lifestyle.

There is no test for IBS, but increasingly, taking an active 'friendly bacteria' supplement – a probiotic – is a recommended therapy – see references in the full report. The evidence from a dozen or more studies and reviewed in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology is that:

“Probiotics will likely have an emerging adjunctive therapeutic role in treating IBS”.

Since IBS and Leaky Gut Syndrome appear closely related and probiotics are recommended for the latter, it is definitely worth trying a probiotic supplement for an 8-week trial period.

Probiotics and Leaky Gut Syndrome

The lining of your intestines needs to allow nutrients to be absorbed into the blood stream.

But sometimes there is a problem. This gut lining becomes permeable or ‘leaky’, allowing bacteria, toxins and some undigested nutrients into the bloodstream and then to circulate throughout the blood. It’s like opening a gateway that should have remained closed.

Once in the bloodstream, these undigested nutrients and/or toxins stimulate the immune system which reacts to their presence as they do to any foreign protein or perceived threat.

This can create an inflammatory reaction that may lead to antibody production and the development of auto-immune diseases, including irritable bowel syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis and Crohn's disease.

In sensitive people, gluten can cause the gut cells to release a protein called zonulin that can break apart the tight junctions in the intestinal lining.

There is even some research to indicate that conditions like severe mood swings, food sensitivities, asthma and eczema could be linked to leaky gut syndrome. Nutritional deficiencies can also result from leaky gut including vitamin B12, magnesium and some key enzymes that help digest food.

Triggers for Leaky Gut Syndrome can include gluten sensitivity as mentioned, excess yeast, antibiotics, excess alcohol, pathogenic bacteria, lactose intolerance, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs – and even simply ageing.

Signs of the condition can include gas, bloating and chronic fatigue.

Nutritional advice on dealing with Leaky Gut Syndrome includes additional vitamin D and zinc and a probiotic supplement. Following a coeliac diet can also help.

More articles on the BENEFITS OF PROBIOTICS here → MicroBiotics Articles & Posts

More situations where probiotics can help …