If you live with your girl, you’ve probably heard her talking about probiotics. (Or you caught Jamie Lee Curtis talking about her intestinal health in those commercials that ran during Ellen.) But what are probiotics, what do they do, and most importantly, do guys even need them?
Basically, probiotics are the bacteria that exist in everyone’s intestinal tract. It lives in your gut 24/7, and is actually necessary for a fully functioning, healthy body. (Fun Fact: the average adult male has nearly 3,000 probiotics in his gut.)
Unlike some bacteria, probiotics aren’t dangerous. It’s actually the opposite. Probiotics are very good for you. They protect you from pathogens that cause viruses and from harmful bacteria. They’re basically your internal SEAL Team, annihilating bad stuff intruding on your gut.
But that’s not all probiotics do. Here are six more things you need to know about probiotics to keep your whole body healthy.
1. Probiotics Support Optimal Digestion and Immune System Functioning
Probiotics balance out your gut and help your entire digestive process. They also aid your body in its ability to breakdown food, and eliminate waste efficiently. (Hey, if Jamie Lee can talk about waste elimination, so can I.) They’re easy to get, too. If you have digestive health problems, a simple probiotic supplement such PhysIQ Probio may help improve the issue.
2. Some Probiotics Can Help You Hit Your Weight Loss Goals
Not all, but some probiotics have the added benefit of helping you lose weight. Lifevantage PhysIQ for example, does this with fat burners. Why would this matter? Having a healthy digestive system is an essential component to dieting. The communication between your brain and gut will be improved, so signals that you’re full are more readily accepted.
3. Probiotics Can Improve Your Overall Mental Well-Being
Probiotics are now being prescribed in place of drugs that contain psychoactive ingredients (probiotics have no psychoactive ingredients) to treat clinical depression and other disorders. Many clinicians and patients believe there is healing power in “healing the gut,” as discussed in this informative Prevention.com article.
4. Probiotics May Cure Your Lactose Intolerance Side-Effects
Probiotics are used to treat diarrhea in adults and children, as well as treat—and sometimes even cure—lactose intolerance. In 2012 clinical trials of the effects of probiotics on lactose intolerant people, they found probiotics may assist with the consumption of dairy products containing lactose. Anecdotally, many people have come forward and claimed that probiotics actually cured their lactose intolerance, so it’s definitely worth a try if you’re lactose intolerant and miss chowing down on some cheese.
5. Probiotics Can Stop or Lessen an Infection
This may not seem that important to us as guys, but probiotics can also help ward off chronic yeast issues, such as reproductive yeast infections or a vaginal bacterial infection. Prevention lists it as a “highly effective solution.” So why do we care? Men don’t get yeast infections, right? Wrong. We can. Especially if we have unprotected sex with a woman who is suffering from an active yeast infection. It’s called balanitis, and while it’s not serious, it is nasty.
6. Probiotics Balance Bacteria and Improves the Appearance of Skin
Live Science reports on research showing probiotics can improve skin conditions, including acne and rosacea. Researchers, including Dr. Whitney Bowe (clinical assistant professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York) are studying how conditions and inflammation of the gut trigger certain skin conditions, and how probiotics play a role in clearing your skin and get it back to date shape.