By now, many of us know that probiotics improve intestinal health. But did you also know that those “good bacteria” may have benefits that extend beyond the gut? It’s true. Research has shown that probiotics can also help fend off seasonal viruses and bacteria. If you are looking for an effective way to keep the “bad bugs” at bay, probiotics will help boost your immune system, and they could drastically reduce your risks of colds and flu.
What are probiotics?
Just like the “good” or “friendly” bacteria found naturally in the body’s digestive system, probiotics are beneficial microorganisms that can provide several health benefits, like preventing the over-growth of harmful microorganisms that can cause disease, as well as providing proper development of the immune system.
Probiotics also plays an important role in helping the body improve digestion and nutrient absorption, produce vitamins, eliminate toxins, and prevent allergies.
Why are probiotics important for the immune system?
Remember, your number one defense in fighting ALL disease, is a strong immune system. To keep your immune system in tip-top shape, you need a healthy balance of good bacteria in the gut.
But things like excess sugar, stress, and taking antibiotics can cause pathogens to outnumber the beneficial bacteria in your intestinal tract, creating an imbalance that can leave the body vulnerable to a host of infections, diseases, and viruses, including colds and flu. If you have a healthy amount of probiotic bacteria in your gut, however, it’s more difficult for the pathogenic bacteria to weaken the immune system.
How can probiotics defend against colds and flu?
Probiotics can help prevent and/or treat your cold or flu. Good bacteria form a protective barrier along your intestinal lining, neutralizing the virus, and stopping it from entering your bloodstream. If the virus does manage to pass through, the beneficial bacteria will help the body increase the production and release of immune cells, allowing the immune system to fight off pathogens before they have a chance to take hold. Supplementing with probiotics is one of the most effective ways to boost your good bacteria and maintain a robust immune system all season long.
There’s no doubt about it, probiotics can be a huge boost to a flagging immune system. But it is not going to happen overnight. It takes time to build up the numbers of good bacteria in your digestive track. So, you want to start taking probiotics as soon as possible before the cold and flu season gets into full swing.