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There are various ways to take good care of your health. Taking probiotics is one of them to maintain a healthy gut and to ease your overall digestion. You probably have heard of probiotics and the amazing health benefits. But you may not know when is the best time to take probiotics. If you have wondered should you take probiotic with food, don’t worry, we have explained all about how and when to take probiotics so you can stop scratching your head trying to figure it out yourself!
Why do we need to take probiotics?
In simpler terms, probiotics is basically good bacteria which our body naturally produce in the intestine. When it comes to our intestines, there are billions of bacteria (good or bad) that aids in absorbing nutrients, digesting food, getting rid of toxins, and so on.
The main purpose of probiotics would be to increase the amount of good bacteria in your gut. Bad bacteria can be more than good bacteria which causes an imbalance, thus making your gut unhealthy. Generally, when you have a bad diet or on a constant state of stress, you will have lack of good bacteria.
Hence, when you consume a high-quality probiotic supplement, you are able to maintain a healthy gut, and in return, a healthy body too.
How long do we have to consistently take probiotics?
You should be taking it on a daily basis. Why? Because probiotics don’t stay in your body for a long period of time as you poop them out almost immediately. In other words, once it passes through your body, it is long gone. Hence why to ensure you’re getting the most out of the probiotics, you should take it every day consistently.
What is a good probiotic to take?
For those who plan to take probiotics on a daily basis, it is recommended to consume the ones which have multi-strains or multi-species of bacteria because they offer better health benefits. Besides, women and men are made differently, so if you’re the former, it’s better to look out for the best probiotics for women instead of a general one.
Other than that, probiotics have specific functions. Below are some of the common ones:
For Mental Health
Yes, probiotics works for mental health too as the gut and brain is connected through the nervous system. Probiotics are said to help improve mood and combat neurotransmitter conditions.
The bacteria called Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium generally works great to reduce symptoms of depression, OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) and anxiety while offering a signifcant boost for memory too.
If you have trouble going to the toilet, probiotics, as you know, promotes overall gut health by improving the bowel movement as food passes through.
The bacteria called Bifidobacterium lactis is said to increase the overall bowel movement effectively.
For Overall Gut Health
Our gut tend to experience inflammation or negative immune reactions overtime as the gut will get damaged.
Though antibiotics are said to work great for gut health by but it kills off the good and bad bacteria, thus causing several side effects such as diarrhea. Probiotics generally do not have any side effects and it works just as efficient as antibiotics.
The bacteria called Saccharomyces boulardii tend to be the best option to promote gut health as well as tackle the diarrhea problems that occurs while taking antibiotics.
What is the best time to take probiotics?
If you’re wondering when to take probiotics, the best time would be the time that is convenient for you. This is because how consistent you take it makes a difference as to how effective it would be.
When To Take Probiotics: Before Meals
Despite that, it is recommended to take probiotics before a meal – roughly 30 minutes or just before breakfast. The reason being your stomach would be less acidic, so the probiotics will digest into your small interesting easily.
When you consume probiotics in the evening or during dinner, the meals will take much longer to digest and produce more acid (which aids in digestion) as the food moves towards the small intestine.
When To Take Probiotics: Mornings
So, when is the best time to take probiotics? In the morning! Those who have taken probiotics in the morning before their breakfast find that it works better.
When To Take Probiotics: Nights
Alternatively, you can also take probiotics just before bed, provided you’re the type which eats dinner quite early. It will take about up to 3 hours for your meals to digest, so if you don’t feel like taking it in the morning, at night before you sleep would be the better choice.
Taking them at night is also a great time because it has been said your gut is considered inactive at night, meaning you don’t really perform certain activities such as poop during the night. Simple put – your bowels aren’t moving while you’re asleep throughout the night.
One factor to bear in mind when you take probiotics at night before bed is still related to how empty your stomach is. To make sure your dinner is completely digested, we recommended to wait for more than 3 hours.
What are the side effects when taking probiotics at a different time?
As mentioned above, it doesn’t really matter when to take probiotics, but rather how consistent you are in taking them. Even if you were to start taking at different times every week, it wouldn’t cause any side effects.
But despite that, you may experience the usual side effects of probiotics such as frequent trips to the bathroom and bloating. You shouldn’t worry too much about this as the side effects would go over as your body adjusts to the probiotics.
If you notice the side effects has been occuring for more than 2 weeks, then you should visit a doctor and seek professional advice as side effects should only last atleast 1 week or so. It might be an indicator that you are taking the wrong probiotic supplement.
Should you take a probiotic with food?
Depending on the type of protiobic, some recommend you to consume on an empty stomach or together with your food. However, ideally, it wouldn’t make a difference as compared to how often you consume it.
However, the best way to take probiotic with food if you prefer that way is to consume a small snack or a meal which digests easily. You will be able to digest the probiotics much faster that way as it will not come into contact with too much stomach acid (produced when food is moving through the stomach all the way to the small intestine).
Large meals will produce even more stomach acid and digesting enzymes, making it longer for the probiotics to move from the stomach to the small intestine.
Ideally, the best time to take probiotics would be as instructed on the instructions label at the back of the probiotic supplements. This is because it is always better to follow the given instructions rather than making your own assumptions.
Nonetheless, the answer to the common question for when to take probiotics is still before your meals or on an empty stomach. Other than that, taking probiotics consistently is also the key to make sure it works well. Therefore, make sure to make it as part of your daily routine so that you will never miss consuming it while you’re going about your day.