Probiotics: How Much is Too Much?
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria and are often recommended for those who have digestion issues like diarrhea, constipation, gas, and bloating. Many health-conscious individuals often take them every day for general health and overall wellness. Some take them to help them manage their weight, treat and prevent health issues like allergy, skin problems, and digestive disorders like IBS and IBD.
Probiotics are naturally found in fermented foods like kefir, yogurt, dairy products, miso, and kimchi. You can also get them through supplements, which is a lot easier to add good bacteria to the gut than simply eating fermented foods. Or you could choose to do both.
How to know if you need to take probiotics?
Having a healthy gut is key to overall health. One way to help keep your gut healthy is to feed the good bacteria inside with prebiotics from fruits and vegetables. Another way to keep it healthy is to add more beneficial bacteria from fermented foods and probiotic supplements.
Probiotics can do a lot to your body, but how do you know you need them? How can you tell that the probiotics in your gut have been depleted? Below are signs that you need probiotics:
- You often experience digestive disturbances such as diarrhea, constipation, gas, and bloating.
- You have recently been on antibiotic treatment.
- You get sick more often, probably of a weakened immune system
- You’re suffering from recurrent vaginal infections.
- You’re suffering from allergies and asthma more often.
- Your daily life is riddled with anxiety, stress, depression, and irritability.
- You have skin conditions like eczema and acne more often.
Can you take too many probiotics or should I double up the dose?
Taking multiple strains and forms of probiotics at the same time is generally safe. However, it’s best to take them according to your needs. Assess your condition, and why you need to take them, so you can decide how many and what forms to take. As much as possible, take probiotic supplements with different or multiple strains as they can target various needs within your gut at the same time.
It’s also possible to consume probiotic-rich foods along with taking your probiotic supplements, but if you decide on doing both, do not do it at the same time. I’d rather take the supplements first thing in the morning on an empty stomach and then eat fermented foods during the day. This way, you get both the benefits from probiotic foods and supplements. You will also receive the nutritional value of eating something with other minerals and vitamins.
What is the potential risk of taking too many probiotics?
Probiotic supplements are “all-natural” thereby, are generally safe and won’t cause adverse side effects. There are no potential risks
when you take too much but’s it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor about this. In some cases, there is a chance that you will experience GI issues such as gas and bloating during the first few weeks before you could notice improvements.