What Is the Meaning of Probiotic?

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    Function

    • As Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist Michael Picco, M.D. notes, probiotics are not required for good health. They can provide some of the same benefits, though, as the bacteria that naturally exists in your gut.

    Effects

    • Dr. Picco says that probiotics aid digestion and counter detrimental bacteria.

    Uses

    • Picco claims there is "encouraging evidence" to support probiotic use to treat diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and yeast infections. Probiotics may also play a role in preventing bladder cancer recurrence and eczema in children.

    Foods

    • Yogurt, fermented and unfermented milk, miso, tempeh and some juice and soy beverages contain probiotics, according to NCCAM. Sometimes the bacteria occur naturally or are added during processing.

    Types

    • NCCAM notes that the two most common types of probiotics are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.

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