The human gut is a fickle creature. It is one of the most important areas of the body and dictates how we feel and how well every other process in the body is carried out.
Yet, it is prone to distress, illness, and problems more than other bodily functions, sometimes with good reason and, for the unfortunate few, sometimes for no reason whatsoever.
Honestly, it feels like we are sometimes taking care of a gigantic baby. We feed it and feed it, then it throws a tantrum and all you can do is try to soothe while figuring out what is going on.
The problem is when the gut, and the organs therein, are also some of the most crippling to humans when they stop working properly, very much like the spine.
There are many medicines that can be taken to soothe your gut, but they only work in reaction to any problems you might have.
To prevent issues with your belly, you are going to have to look at what you eat and try to eat something that will aid your gut digestion.
These can be many things, from a slight change in diet to a complete cutting out of some foods. One thing that does help is probiotics, but when do you really need to take probiotics?
Is it only during sore stomach situations? Or is there more to them? In this article, we will look at some signs you may need a probiotic.
What Are Probiotics?
Before we begin, we will have a look at probiotics and what they do. In terms of the human body and microbiology, there is a quite widely held view that all bacteria are bad for us or just evil beings in general.
This is not quite the case. Bacteria are neither good nor bad in terms of morality, they simply exist where there are resources for them to use and have developed exploiting those resources.
For some, this has meant that evolutionarily they have become reliant on other creatures and infect these creatures before killing them, bacteria like Yersinia Pestis, which causes the Black Death.
However, others are useful and eat dead material, wood, or other bacteria, while others still live symbiotically with another creature.
The first group is very important for our world’s ecosystem and without them, we would have major problems and the second one affects us directly.
In fact, your body is made up of mostly bacteria that work in harmony with us, and that includes bacteria that live in your gut. Probiotics are live bacterial microorganisms that are the same as the ones in your gut.
When they are consumed, they enter your digestive tract and begin aiding the bacteria already there, thus improving gut health.
Probiotics can be found in a lot of fermented foods, like yogurt or miso, and they have been turned into a very lucrative food-based industry, because of everyone’s need for a healthy gut, especially in the modern day when unhealthy foods are everywhere.
Signs That You Need Probiotics
Your gut is basically the power station of your body. Without it, we can’t do anything. It processes foods and water to create physical and mental energy.
Therefore, it needs to be kept in top working order. If you are experiencing problems in another part of your body, then it may well be in the gut that the problem starts.
As such, here are some issues that you could have because you are not taking care of your gut, or you are not taking any probiotics:
The gut and the brain communicate directly with one another through the vagus nerve and most of that communication is from the gut to the brain, telling it either problems or passing information about hormones.
Tryptophan is an amino acid that the bacteria in your gut creates. This amino acid is important in the conversion of serotonin to melatonin, the hormone which helps you sleep.
The bacteria in your gut is responsible for up to 90% of the manufacture of serotonin in the body.
With that being the case, if the microbiome of your gut is having problems, tryptophan production suffers which then affects serotonin and melatonin, and as such you suffer from a lack of sleep.
Mental Health Suffers
Most hormones are actually produced in the gut to some extent, and this includes the hormones that regulate mood and make you feel good. Two of the most essential for this are serotonin and dopamine.
These two hormones are the ones responsible for you feeling joy, excitement, happiness, and contentment in what you are doing.
People who are having problems with production of these two hormones are not having a good time and often have mental health problems, like depression or anxiety.
It is essential to maintain a healthy gut so the production of these two hormones isn’t impacted.
Eating unhealthily constantly can lead to an emotional downward spiral, due to a lack of manufacture of these hormones.
If you are getting ill more frequently than your friends or co-workers, it might be time to look at your gut health.
The digestion in your gut is one of the primary reasons that you have a strong immune system, as if you eat healthily, then it can produce all the hormones it needs to keep your body in tip-top shape.
It is also the most common invasion area for illness and disease into the body. This is due to food being put into our body regularly and harmful microorganisms hitching a ride on that food.
Probiotics have a strong need to keep you healthy, and so will often tackle invaders themselves to keep them out.
This means that a healthy gut biome will have a better defense against attacking germs, but an unhealthy gut biome will be weaker and more susceptible to their attack.
Not really a surprising one here. If you are having problems with your bowels or digestive tract, it may be time to take some probiotics.
The bacteria in your gut are working for you to keep your gut working normally and healthily.
If your gut doesn’t feel healthy, and you are having diarrhea, cramps, or constipation, it is because something is going wrong down there and that may be because your gut’s bacteria are suffering.
Try a probiotic and eat healthily for the next few days.
Probiotics can also be good for chronic bowel problems, like IBS or IBD. The causes of these conditions are not very well understood, but there is a link between anxiety and stress with them.
Since having a healthy gut can lessen the symptoms of anxiety and stress, it is a good idea to try and maintain gut health.
Probiotics are a good thing to have in your diet, and it's not like they are a major change for most people.
Most probiotics can be found in common foods and there are even those that come in a small drinkable bottle, about the height of a little finger.
If you are experiencing gut issues and can’t find the cause, maybe try a probiotic. It may help you more than you know.
If you are continuing to experience gut issues after this, speak to a doctor or professional health care provider. Even if a probiotic doesn’t stop your suffering, it may still ease it, which is a step in the right direction.