Who among us hasn’t suffered the unpleasantness of constipation, gas, and bloating at one time or another? Virtually everyone deals with these problems and those who suffer from chronic GI problems know them all too well. So, can probiotics help with gas? Do probiotics work for constipation? Are probiotics good for bloating? Let’s explore these questions and discuss how those who suffer from these annoying symptoms might find some relief.
While digestion was once thought to be one of the simpler systems of the body, we now see and appreciate its complexities more clearly. The digestive system is home to a myriad of microorganisms including bacteria, archaea, fungi, and viruses. These microbes, often referred to collectively as the gut microbiome, serve an important purpose for the digestive system and your overall health. They help digest food and they have important effects on the metabolism, the immune system, the central nervous system, and the brain.
A normal microbiome contains about 100 trillion microorganisms representing over 500 million species of bacteria, fungi, and viruses. A healthy gut contains a balance of these various organisms and species. But certain factors (diet, medications, stress, sleep, smoking) can cause the balance within the microbiome to be disturbed. An imbalance within the gut microbiome is known as dysbiosis. The result of dysbiosis can be unpleasant symptoms including diarrhea, cramping, constipation, gas, and bloating.
Fortunately, microbiome dysbiosis can be corrected. The first step is to address the conditions that created the dysbiosis. Be sure to get enough sleep, limit stress, stop smoking, and eat a diet that includes plenty of whole foods, especially fresh fruits and vegetables. Another positive step towards restoring gut health is to consider a probiotic supplement. Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotic supplements contain 12 distinct probiotic strains along with prebiotics and postbiotics from pure spring water, fruits, wild vegetables, mushrooms, and seaweed.
Constipation (difficulty passing stool) is a common problem that many people experience from time to time. Common causes of constipation are insufficient fluid intake, a low-fiber diet, and certain medications, so lifestyle modifications are a good first step. As referenced above, these common causes of constipation are all also linked to gut dysbiosis.
So, will probiotics help with constipation? Studies have shown certain strains of bacteria to be helpful for easing constipation, particularly Bifidobacterium and to a lesser extent, Lactobacillus.
These studies showed probiotics softened stool and increased the frequency of weekly bowel movements. This may be because these two strains of bacteria produce short-chain fatty acids which are thought to improve bowel motility by stimulating neural receptors in the gut wall. So it seems probiotics and constipation relief do have a relationship.
Perhaps the most common reason people first learn of the gut microbiome is when they turn to probiotics for digestion and gas. It’s said that up to 30 percent of Americans (or 100 million people) are troubled by gas and bloating. What causes this and will probiotics help with gas?
People whose gut microbiome is unbalanced and can’t properly do its job may suffer from these annoying symptoms. Dysbiosis often results in gas, bloating, and other types of gastrointestinal discomfort. But, gas is produced by the breakdown of foods that we eat during the digestive process, so some flatulence is normal. Beneficial microorganisms in the gut ferment the parts of our food we can’t digest (fibers). This is why those who eat a diet high in fiber often find they have more gas than they would like.
A 2019 research study found that those who ate a high fiber diet and also added fermented milk containing probiotics had less bloating and abdominal discomfort. The conclusion is that adding the beneficial microbiota to the gut helped the patients tolerate the high fiber diet with less discomfort.
Adding helpful microorganisms to the gut can be achieved through a diet rich in prebiotic and probiotic foods. Prebiotic foods are high fiber foods such as chicory root, dandelion greens, Jerusalem artichoke, garlic, onions, leeks, asparagus, barley, oats, konjac root, flax seeds, and seaweed. Probiotic foods include yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, and other fermented items. Be sure the probiotic foods you eat contain the right probiotic strains, that they contain live cultures, and that they are properly handled and stored so as to protect the live cultures.
It may be a challenge to eat enough prebiotic and probiotic foods to restore and maintain a balanced gut microbiome, but it is worth it. A simpler option may be to take a supplement that contains prebiotics and postbiotics for stomach bloating and gas. With a supplement such as Dr. Ohhira’s postbiotics, you don’t have to worry about storage methods and live cultures. Dr. Ohhira’s are the only 3-Year fermented food supplement with prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics in one pill. Discover the Dr. Ohhira’s advantage for yourself!
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Many people ask “can probiotics cause bloating or gas?” When you first begin taking probiotics, gas or bloating may increase temporarily while your body adjusts to them. These temporary side effects won’t last and should resolve in a week or two.
Any time you add a new supplement to your regimen, give it several weeks to work. Be sure to drink plenty of water with your probiotics and constipation should ease or lessen after a week or two.
There really is no best time to take probiotics. We recommend taking probiotics at the same time every day to get into a routine. You may want to take them on an empty stomach, either first thing in the morning or just before bed. Some people find supplements are better taken with a small snack to prevent stomach upset.
Many people find Dr. Ohhira’s probiotics offer rapid relief of occasional heartburn, bloating, and gas. Others find they must take it every day for a week or two before seeing consistent improvement. Your results will vary.