What are Probiotics? And What are the Health Benefits of Probiotics

Probiotics are the "friendly" bacteria that live in your gut, and they help break down food and produce vitamins for your body to use, like Vitamin K and B12. Probiotics have been shown to help with various ailments, including IBS, diarrhea, constipation, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), depression and anxiety.


The idea behind probiotic therapy is that it will help your body fight off infections by reintroducing useful bacteria into the digestive tract after antibiotic treatment has killed off the bad bacteria. In this article, we will discuss the benefits of probiotics.


Let's get started.

What Are Probiotics?


The term probiotics refers to non-digestible food ingredients that beneficially affect the host by selectively stimulating the growth or activity of a limited number of bacteria in the colon. In other words, prebiotics can be considered "good" dietary fibre whose purpose is to help improve gut health. Prebiotics might also reduce cholesterol levels and inflammation markers within our body's tissues, making them a good ally against many chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, etc.


Moreover, pre & probiotic supplements usually include specific bacterial strains with proven scientific effectiveness on digestive function. Prebiotics is very common; probiotics can be perceived as "strange" dietary supplements.

What Are Good Bacteria?


Good bacteria are very important for our gut health, and they are immunity boosters that help us in digestion and protect us against harmful microorganisms. To keep these good bacteria alive, we should eat prebiotic foods like vegetables or pre-and probiotics supplements that contain prebiotic ingredients (fructooligosaccharides). If you fear your microbiome activity is insufficient because of the bad diet, stress or antibiotic use, it might be smart to take pre/probiotics dietary supplement capsules.


All these pills usually contain acidophilus, which helps with digestion problems by producing enzymes in the small intestine, allowing other digestive enzymes produced by stomach acids to work better. It also stimulates healthy intestinal movements, so if you’re struggling with constipation, probiotics might be the right solution for you.

What Happens When the Body Lacks Probiotics?


The digestive system is composed of the intestines, stomach and liver. When these organs get damaged due to various reasons such as overuse of antibiotics or other medications, the balance of good bacteria gets destroyed, leading to a condition called dysbiosis, which can lead to the leaky gut syndrome. Dysbiosis has been linked with several chronic diseases like cardiovascular disease and diabetes.


Probiotics are living microorganisms that promote health in our body when introduced into it through fermented foods or supplements containing beneficial bacterial strains. In the absence of prebiotics, probiotics can't grow and survive. Prebiotics are the foods that pre-digest themselves to feed probiotic bacteria, producing byproducts such as short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) that nourish the cells lining our gut.

Effects of Probiotics on Body


Mentioned below are some of the major benefits of probiotics:

1.     Improves mental health issue

A pre and probiotic capsule can help improve mental health issues. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that line the gut. A healthy gut helps support a strong immune system, regulates digestion, and manufactures vitamins and other nutrients. The good bacteria in probiotics crowd out bad bacteria to keep your gut healthy. When your gut is healthy, it sends signals to your brain that affect mood and emotions.


Host Defense capsules include 14 strains of freeze-dried mycelium, providing a high potency prebiotic blend that supports digestive probiotics. This supplement also helps maintain the balance of intestinal flora for optimal probiotics for gut health. It’s an easy way to get the benefits of both pre and probiotics in the capsule.

2.     Supports healthy immune system

A healthy immune system is a key to fighting off diseases such as cancer. Promoting a healthy microbiome also needs additional support from prebiotics – Fructooligosaccharides (FOS), Mannitol, Xylitol or Sucrose Polycanate. Research has confirmed that supplementation of prebiotics enhances both short term and long term benefits of taking daily probiotics: doubled survival rate after radiation treatment for breast cancer patients; the improved response of prebiotic fibre supplementation among elderly adults with the compromised immune system.

3.     Provides prebiotic effects

Both pre and probiotics have a symbiotic relationship. Prebiotics help the growth of beneficial bacteria in the human body, while probiotics feed on probiotics to increase their number. This helps provide a healthy gut environment for good bacteria (R). Prebiotics are carbohydrates found in dietary fiber, such as garlic, onion, whole wheat flour etc., that cannot be digested by humans but can be consumed by digestive microorganisms.


They promote the colonic fermentation of fibres, which stimulates microbial populations, including Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species(R). These organisms produce short-chain fatty acids like acetate propionate and lactate, which help reduce digestive diseases and gut disorders.

4.     Increases Vitamins

Probiotics perform this function by enhancing the gut defence system, controlling intestinal microbiota composition and initiating immune responses (R). These organisms produce short-chain fatty acids like acetate propionate and lactate, which help reduce digestive diseases and gut disorders. They also synthesize certain B-complex vitamins such as pyridoxine, folic acid, riboflavin etc., that are essential for human growth(R).


As a result of their high demand in our body, probiotics perform functions of vitamin synthesis to some extent. (R) For example, Lactobacillus reuteri can produce bioactive amines from amino acids precursors, such as histidine and tryptophan (R).

5.     Controls cholesterol

The bioactive substances produced by probiotics help control the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine. They also reduce the formation of bile acids responsible for increased hepatic synthesis of cholesterol. In addition, they increase the excretion of fecal bile acids through their prebiotic effects (R). Various probiotic strains have been shown to inhibit enzymes like pancreatic lipase and gastric lipase that hydrolyze dietary triglycerides into free fatty acids and monoglycerides(R). This inhibits the uptake of lipid particles by enterocytes and reduces serum levels of total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and triacylglycerols (R).

6.     Maintains gastrointestinal health

Maintaining digestive health is extremely important for overall wellness. The gastrointestinal tract contains trillions of bacteria vital for mental and physical health. The prebiotics contained in probiotic capsules helps to maintain the balance of these healthy gut microbes, which promotes good intestinal flora while inhibiting the growth of harmful microorganisms.


In addition, probiotics have been shown to help with various gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, constipation, and Crohn’s disease. Probiotics can help reduce or even eliminate these symptoms by restoring balance to the gut flora.

7.     Improve gut health

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health, especially your gut. Probiotics can be found in some foods, such as yogurt, or you can take them as a supplement. Some people believe that probiotics can help with diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and Crohn's disease. There is also evidence that probiotics may help prevent urinary tract infections (UTIs) and colds.


There are different types of probiotics, and each one has a slightly different effect on your gut health. Some probiotics help break down food so that you can digest it better. Others keep the bad bacteria in your intestines under control. And still, others produce vitamins and minerals that your body needs for good health.

8.     Supports good bacteria

The prebiotics found in supplements can increase the good bacteria's ability to reproduce, which benefits your entire digestive system. Your beneficial gut bacteria are naturally equipped to fight off invaders that might be harmful.


However, they need to support themselves from prebiotics so they don't get overrun by disease-causing microorganisms or other bad bugs like yeast infections (candida overgrowth) that overpopulate the intestinal tract when the natural balance of good and bad bacteria is disturbed.

9.     Provides nourishment to cells

Prebiotics are available in pre-and probiotic capsules, or they can be found naturally in foods like chicory root, Jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes), raw dandelion greens, onions, leeks, garlic. Prebiotics also help keep your gut lining healthy by nourishing the cells that form its innermost layer; this helps prevent permeability of the intestine.


When prebiotics pass through an empty colon (after you've been on a course of antibiotics), there's nothing left alive down there to ferment them, so they don't cause gas and bloating when consumed.

10.Prevent & Treat Diarrhea

Prebiotics are often called "non-digestible fibre prebiotics" because they provide food for the probiotics and good bacteria in your gut. When prebiotic foods travel through our digestive system, they pull water out of the colon, making it easier to have a bowel movement. They also help control inflammation by feeding or growing healthy microbes that keep harmful ones from surviving on their surface.

The Bottom Line

Probiotics are live microorganisms that confer a health benefit on the host when consumed in adequate amounts. The most common probiotic strains are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Probiotics can be found in fermented foods like yogurt and kombucha and pre-and probiotic supplements.


The gut microbiota is essential for human health, and disturbances to the gut microbiota can lead to various diseases. Probiotics have been shown to beneficially modulate the gut microbiota, which may account for their various health benefits.