Probiotic for Constipation – Does it Work?
Will probiotic for constipation problems work? Let’s have a look.
No one really wants to talk about constipation but so many people suffer from it daily. This type of bowel restriction is caused by many different factors ranging from certain medications, poor diet, pregnancy, hormones, stress and also certain diseases like diabetes. This all results in less peristaltic movements occurring in the colon and so stool moves too slowly and starts to harden.
It can be incredibly embarrassing as well as painful but if you know how to treat it properly, you could offer yourself some well deserved relief.
Although there are different reasons that people suffer from constipation there is one thing that so many people overlook that could help them immensely, and that is probiotics.
Probiotics for Constipation – Is it The Solution?
So what exactly are probiotics? Basically they are a form of good bacteria that we need in our digestive tract to keep it healthy and illness free. When we take medication like antibiotics, they can often destroy not only the bad bacteria, but some of the good bacteria as well causing an imbalance in our gut and so often you will find that your doctor will prescribe one of these good bacteria at the same time as he does an antibiotic to prevent that from happening.
That’s all good and well, but how can taking a one of these help with a obstruction problem? As mentioned previously, our digestive system is full of bacteria and when there is an imbalance in the different levels of bacteria for one or more reasons, digestive problems such as being unable to pass a stool and irritable bowel syndrome can occur.
The probiotics that are the most effective are ones with strains of Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus as these are the two bacteria that are most common in the large intestine. These good bacteria also convert bound bile salts into free bile salts. What these do is increase mucous secretion as well as cause more water to be absorbed by the colon, helping soften stool and ultimately eliminate it more easily. Another probiotic that is wonderful and can help to relieve blockage is ones that produce both lactic acid as well as short-chain fatty acids. What these do is lower the pH in the large intestine and colon causing muscle contractions and in turn, encouraging peristalsis to occur. Peristalsis is the act of your intestinal muscles contracting in order to eliminate waste.
Probiotic for Constipation Studies
Studies have shown that when these two different variants are taken together, that’s when you will get the best results.
Let’s take a closer look at the different types of probiotics that are available over and above these. Bear in mind that everyone’s body is different so what works for one person may not work for another. It is also recommended that you only take probiotics that clinically trialled and have proven to have health benefits.
Otherwise known as BB-12 this probiotic is very well researched and has been proven again and again at relieving constipation. It has also been shown to help those that suffer with IBS (irritable bowl syndrome) as well as elderly that suffer from poor bowel movements.
Another strain of BB-12 that has shown to help constipation is B.lactis DN-173 010. A study was done on 267 patients that all suffered from the type of IBS that causes severe constipation. After six weeks, majority of the patients noticed that they were passing stool more frequently and more easily.
It is important to note that even though the positive results were received for adults, this strain of probiotic was not found to be particularly effective in children.
Lactobacillus Casei Rhamnosus GG:
Also known as LGG. The results of this probiotic were mixed; an initial study showed that it helped to increase bowel movements and in turn offer some relief, but a later study showed that it did not help children who had already been given a prescribed remedy for constipation.
A trial was done on 250 men and 386 women that all suffered from IBS and poor peristaltic movements and were also taking prebiotics. The trial showed that Bifidobacterium longum increased the stool frequency and consistency in men but did not have as much success in women.
L.plantarum is the most popular and most effective helpful bacteria for relieving not only constipation, but IBS as well even though only some of its strains have been clinically trialled. In addition, it also helps with bloating as well as improving liver function in some adults.
This is one of the main bacteria that help to keep infants bowels healthy and is incredibly important in the early years of childhood. A study was conducted in Whorwell that proved that when children suffering from not being able to pass stool were given this probiotic, they had more frequent bowel movements. Constipation is often not recognized in children and so it is important to make yourself familiar with the different causes of it as well as the sump
Lactobacillus Casei Shirota:
You are probably already familiar with this bacterium as it is the one that is in yogurt drinks that one purchases from the supermarket. In a trial, 70 patients that suffer from chronic constipation were either given a yogurt drink or a placebo. Those who were given the yogurt drink had much less constipation after two weeks compared to those who were given the placebo.
As much as probiotics help constipation, you may want to consider taking a prebiotic as well. They act a source of food for probiotics and can also help to stimulate bacteria in the colon that is beneficial. They have also been said to have a laxative effect.
Of course, the easiest way to make sure that you have enough probiotics in your body is by taking one in a capsule form daily. However, if you want to increase your dosage even further, you may consider adding foods like natural live yogurt, sauerkraut and kimchi into your diet.
If you suffer from constipation, or even irritable bowel syndrome, it is quite evident from this article that introducing probiotic for constipation could be incredibly beneficial to your health. Make sure to consult your doctor so that you can ensure that you will be using the right strain for your needs.