Three More Reasons To Take A Daily Probiotic
Last time, we looked at some of the common reasons for taking a daily probiotic. A diet rich in fiber and fermented foods is associated with better bacterial balance in the gut, so people who don’t consume enough are likely to benefit from a daily probiotic. And evidence clearly shows that that antibiotics can kill good bacteria along with the bad. To replenish the friendly bacteria, a probiotic may be needed.
There are three more factors that can affect your body’s gut flora:
#1 Your Water Supply
Drinking water is one of the healthiest habits you can cultivate. Unfortunately, though, water is routinely treated with two chemicals that can affect your body’s bacterial balance. Chlorine is added to the water supply to kill harmful microbes. But just as antibiotics destroy the good bacteria along with the bad, so does chlorine.
Fluoride may also be a problem. Many municipalities add fluoride to water because some evidence shows it prevents tooth decay. But many experts believe that fluoride acts on your body’s bacteria in a similar way as chlorine.
Your best bet is to install a filter in your home that strips both chlorine and fluoride out of the drinking water supply. If that’s not possible, ensure a supply of good bacteria with a daily probiotic.
#2 Your Environment
Do you spend time regularly outdoors? Do you go barefoot? Do you garden or walk in the woods and not worry about getting your hands dirty? Do you have pets or care for other animals?
Hopefully you said yes to some of these questions. Each of these activities delivers a wide range of bacterial strains that can contribute to a healthy, balanced microbiome and overall wellbeing.
#3 Heritage Bacteria
Did your mother pass along her good bacteria to you? If you were born by c-section, you didn’t have the opportunity to collect your mother’s microflora as you came through the birth canal. This early bacterial exposure helps to colonize a baby’s gut flora, and c-section babies miss out on this opportunity.
Were you breast fed for at least a few months? Mom’s breast milk contains both probiotics (good bacteria) and prebiotics, which nourish the probiotics.[viii] Babies who are exclusively formula fed don’t get this good bacteria and it can set them up for a bacterial imbalance.
Life in the 21st century is a good life. But as we began to enjoy the many benefits of modern progress, we left behind some of the habits that helped to keep our ancestors healthy. Incorporate as many of these bacteria-building habits as you can. It can be hard, though, to change habits quickly. A daily probiotic can be helpful as an added measure of protection.