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PROBIOTICS…DO YOU REALLY NEED THEM?

Have you been told that you need a probiotic to clear up your gut issues?
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if so, it is understandable as the whole topic of GUT HEALTH is on the top of most people’s tongues nowadays.
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I get it, you want a solution to an issue that is currently experiencing and it seems to be so easy to take a pill to solve it!
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But let’s take a step back for a minute.
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This post is not aimed at anyone with severe GI issues but for self-diagnosed parts of the general population who suffer from bloating, constipation and so on.
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Perhaps you could be suffering these symptoms due to a poor digestion system and a highly stressed body. I’m not a doctor but I do critically think about these things instead of popping a pill to solve the issue. Dig deeper!
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According to Boland (2016), the process of digestion starts in the brain firstly (be mindful of the meal you are about to consume) where saliva will be produced in the mouth. Then from there, the main part takes part in the mouth by where you should be chewing your food to facilitate the breakdown of the food. A good ballpark here would be to aim for 15-40 chews per piece of food.
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Now already you might be thinking that I do not do any of this. Well if this is the case you are missing a beat and also giving your stomach a lot of work to breakdown the food when it arrives. Instead of going deep in the rest of the digestion process I just want to highlight the fact you could be missing a few key steps which may lead to a gut issue.
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From here then you could be running around highly stressed, distracted by your phone while you are eating, you jump up immediately after the meal and rush off about your day.
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When you look deeper, lots of red flags can arise and this is where it is important to address the issues.
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So maybe be a bit more mindful about your food, chew your food, take your time eating the meal and put away your phone!
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Now from here if you have all of these on lockdown and you want to maybe help aid your gut health even further then a probiotic could be a good option.
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The area of gut health is relatively new and is developing as we speak. Lee et al. (2018) noted that probiotics can have a range of positive effects to help aid the gut microbiome and healthy bacteria in the gut. This, in turn, can possibly have favourable effects on GI issues such as SIBO, dysbiosis and “leaky gut”.
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So the take-home point would be from this article would be that if are experiencing GI issues and you are missing a few steps of digestion maybe start addressing them. From there then have a look at how stressed you are and maybe add in a probiotic to help aid your gut health.
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But do not just take a pill in the hope that it will solve everything for you!
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On a side note, it may be beneficial to take a probiotic after a course of antibiotics to treat a sickness as all “good and bad” bacteria will be eliminated during this time. According to the NHS (2018) can help restore a healthy gut bacteria balance after an illness or sickness. Hence the reason behind why I am currently running a course of Udos Super 8 to help the rebuild of good bacteria in my gut!
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*Disclaimer: This article is only for information purposes only and please seek medical advice if you are experiencing any of these issues. As always before you take any supplement you should always contact a physician.

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