Has anyone tried the new “good for digestion” foods?

I’ve heard a lot of hype about probiotics, but I don’t know if I believe it. I know of Dannon Activia, and Breakstone has LiveActive cottage cheese, but do they work and are they worth buying?

Our digestive systems need a balance of good bacteria and fungi for proper health. Usually, we start to get these microorgaisms at birth (from the birth canal, so babies born by Caesarian miss out a bit). We also get them from certain fermented products such as yoghurt (natural yoghurt that is), sauerkraut, miso.

The reason they are important is that the microorganisms are responsible for producing some of our vitamins (eg vitamin K), and for a small part of our digestion. They also keep other (pathogenic) microorganisms in check, and play a role in healthy elimination (often people low on healthy microorganisms are constipated or have diarrhoea).

Stress and poor diet can kill the healthy bowel flora (microorganisms), and cause an imbalance. The healthy bowel flora like a diet high in fibre - fruit, veg, nuts and good cereal (not breakfast cereal - rice, barley, millet, wheat, psyllium)

If you are healthy, and live a relatively healthy lifestyle, with a good diet, you should not need to take probiotics. You will need them if you have taken antibiotics, which are a bit indiscriminate and kill the good bugs too.

I agree there is a lot of hype about probiotics, but they do have their place. There is also a lot of hype about the amount you need. Good quality yoghurt will be sufficient in many cases. After all, provided you are eating healthy food to feed the good bugs, the smallish amount that makes it to your intestines will grow there.

One of the most important things for digestive health is to make sure your stomach is working well. If it is then the rest of the digestive system tends to work better too. For stomach health, eat bitter foods before meals (grapefruit, rocket, endive), don't drink with meals, and don't eat if not hungry. Relax when eating - don't eat on the run.

Sorry if this is a bit verbose - but digestive health is so important to overall health. If you want more details, feel free to email me.

I hope this helps, and wish you all the best.

The medicine and health information post by website user , Health2009.com not guarantee correctness , is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions.

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