Why Probiotics are Important As You Age
Probiotics and Aging
Aging is inevitable. As we pass through life's many chapters and phases, we all get older. While we focus on our outward appearance when aging, the truth is, the aging process starts from within-in our gut. And when we talk about our gut, we refer to the trillions of microbes inside that make up the gut microbiome.
What happens as you age?
With aging comes:
- Increased susceptibility to infectious disease
- Decreased GI function and structure
- Increased antibiotic use can lead to diarrhea and other intestinal problems
- Decreased cellular immunity
- A much lower number of friendly bacteria in the gut
- Increased GI problems
As we continue to age, the diversity of our microbiome remains relatively stable. By the time we reach 50, the microbiome shifts back towards those of our first couple of years of life, abundant in anti-aging Bifidobacteria. However, our microbiome becomes depleted because of many lifestyle factors that can wipe out the good microbes in the gut, such as:
- Processed foods
- Excessive hygiene habits
- Environmental toxins and chemical
By the time we reach 60 years old, bad bacteria have gained a foothold, speeding up the aging process and leaving us feeling tired and worn out above our years.
Are probiotics anti-aging?
The health benefits of probiotics are well-established. The use of probiotics throughout the world has been noted for generations. And it turns out that probiotics are even more important in the aging group. By adopting a gut-healthy lifestyle, nourishing and supporting it with probiotics, you can maintain your youthful feeling and vitality for all the years to come.
Studies have shown that probiotics are beneficial, especially to aged adults who suffer from a suppressed immune system because of the effects of aging and increased use of antibiotics.
Anti-aging benefits of probiotics
Here’s a little more on how the good bacteria can help keep you feeling young:
- Help maintain your cognitive and memory function. As we age, our memory and cognitive function decline. However, probiotics supplements can enhance your memory function as you age. In a recent study, those who took probiotic supplements for a month scored higher on memory tests than those who did not take supplements.
- It acts as an antioxidant. Aging is a direct result of uncontrolled free radicals in the body. The good news is, certain probiotic strains have antioxidant properties that help reduces oxidative stress.
- Probiotics help support brain cell health. Probiotics can do more than just supporting gut health. They indirectly enhance the brain. The brain and gut are connected and the gut bacteria produce substances that can influence the brain. Nourishing the gut can therefore support the health of brain cells.
- Supports cellular immunity. 70% of your body’s immune system resides in the gut, and you all know that as one age, the immune function decreases all because the diversity of your gut flora also decreases. By taking probiotic supplements, you are giving your immune system a boost. Also, probiotics help promote the production of natural antibodies that suppress the growth of harmful bacteria.
- Increased energy. Probiotics help support digestion and nutrient absorption to give you the energy to stay active and healthy. Certain probiotic strains can even digest lactose your body can’t digest as you get old.