I Took a Probiotic Supplement for a Month and these Five Things Happened

I Took a Probiotic Supplement for a Month

It’s the small things that make a huge difference

After all the research and pieces I have written about the benefits of a probiotic, I wondered why I haven’t even bothered to try it myself! What kind of a health hacker am I if unwilling to experiment on myself? I’d be silly not to since probiotics are beneficial when it comes to all the things I find a challenge right now, including;

  • Improving your gut health
  • Controlling diarrhoea
  • Improves your mental health
  • Helps aid digestion
  • It helps you lose weight
  • Boost your immune system
  • Help ease allergies

Whilst I didn’t experience any earth-shattering life differences, I did improve many things plaguing me. Without further rambling, here’s what I’ve experienced.

One: I didn’t react to stress badly or experience overwhelm

This was surprising because I’m a stress-head, which is no surprise. Having a demanding job, a family, paying bills, and uni take my toll. There have been moments of frustration that have shown up on my face, like a pimple or two!

Despite the chaos in my life, I am calm and generally in a good mood. My memory hasn’t been too bad, and how much information I retain is surprising— which has benefitted all my uni assignments. A human study found that supplementing with Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus for about 1–2 months can improve anxiety, depression, autism, obsessive-compulsive disorder and memory. A similar study was undertaken on 40 patients with depression.

Again, they took a probiotic supplement for eight weeks. Compared to those who did not take a probiotic, they decreased their C-reactive protein levels, a marker of inflammation and hormones such as insulin. My overall theory is that if probiotics can help those who suffer from mental health issues, it will profoundly affect those who do not yet react more sensitively to their environment. If you are under vast amounts of stress and find it difficult to gain clarity or inner calm and peace, why not add some probiotics daily (as well as better quality nutrition) to help?

Two: My abdomen feels leaner and less bloated

I don’t know about experiencing weight loss because I don’t weigh myself — although my stomach became flatter, I felt less bloated overall. Plus, I started to see more of the muscles on my abdomen — which may indicate some body fat loss (without intentionally trying).

Probiotics are said to prevent the absorption of dietary fat in the intestine, which is then excreted through your poo rather than stored as body fat. A study conducted amongst 210 people found that those who took low doses of Lactobacillus gasseri for 12 weeks had an 8.5% reduction in belly fat. One word of warning — studies show that these particular probiotics can increase weight. Be wary of Lactobacillus acidophilus, found in many yogurts in the supermarket.

There: My digestion is more settled.

My digestion is terrible. So one or several foods can set me off and a stressful episode. Mix those two, and I have a recipe for a digestive disaster. It can get very uncomfortable, leaving me hungry and dehydrated because of how upset my midsection becomes. Many people in the community suffer from conditions known as Crohn’s disease and colitis, which is a terrible inflammatory bowel disease. But those with mild ulcerative colitis benefit from taking Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus. Unfortunately, probiotics do not affect the symptoms of Crohn’s disease. But suppose you do have bowel disturbances or perhaps IBS. In that case, it’s probably an excellent idea to start taking probiotics to reduce your symptoms’ severity.

Four: Everyone on my team contracted Covid apart from me (knock on wood)

I kid you not when I say that my whole team succumbed to Covid, and we all will inevitably fall victim at one time or another.

But, given that we are in an enclosed office, all travelling from different suburbs, I have been lucky not to have contracted COVID or any other cold and flu virus floating around.

Probiotics have been shown to promote the production of natural antibodies in the body. They also help boost the immune system; giving those natural killer cells provides a kick towards keeping germs from taking over. Probiotics don’t only help increase your resistance to germs; they may also help women reduce their risk of urinary tract infections — and this is by about 50% (which is enormous!).

Five: It’s helped stop the severity of my diarrhoea

No one wants to talk about their bathroom trips — some have difficulty with that necessary aspect of our life.

Hormones, foods, sensitivities, and a very reactive gut can send you to the bathroom for all the wrong reasons. I suffer from both sides of the spectrum, which can come on quite rapidly.

So that means I’m increasing my stress and anxiety, knowing there is potential for a trigger when I cannot use the bathroom. Whilst taking my probiotics, I won’t lie; I still had bouts of diarrhoea- but nowhere near as bad as when I didn’t take anything. This form of diarrhoea isn’t directly related to antibiotics, but taking those does set my gut alight in the worst possible way. Probiotics can help reduce the severity of diarrhoea from a reaction to probiotics and when it’s not associated with it.

Key take away

My experience with probiotics has been positive — despite the small changes. I believe that taking them for a much longer duration is necessary, and I have also put my teenager to the test. I wanted to see if probiotics helped ease her stress and anxiety while boosting her immune system.

I might swap and change the variety, but I prefer to add as many greens into my diet to alter the diverse good bacteria. Sauerkraut is one of my favourite meals, which also benefits the gut. If you suffer from gut challenges or perhaps want to lose weight and find that stress is a significant contributor to your lifestyle, why not give probiotics a chance and start making small internal changes one by one?

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