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Probiotics: They do the body good, especially if you have been on antibiotics lately

I'm sure you have been told on more than one occasion to take probiotics. But do you know why? Or exactly which ones you should be taking?

Probiotics 101

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts—the good kind of bacteria. The kind that help with digestion and gut health. Probiotics are found in your body, and also in food—from yogurt to chocolate.

So if we make them ourselves and we can get them from food, why and when should we supplement with them?

One of the most crucial times to take probiotics is after being on antiobiotics. While antibiotics kill the "bad" bacteria, they also kill the good ones. This can lead to a poor immune system. Taking probiotics will help rebuild your good bacteria and help restore your immune system. Not only that, they have also been linked to helping with irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease and diarrhea. Finally, they're believed to be linked to better oral, urinary and vaginal health, and they even help improve skin conditions, such as eczema.

Two important things to note:

1. The higher the CFU count, the better!

CFU count?

CFU stands for “colony forming units” and is used to quantify how many bacteria in probiotics are capable of dividing and forming colonies.

For our purposes, all you need to know is higher is better.

I recently just finished two-weeks of probiotics recommended by Dr. Alana "Show Pony" Shaw from BodaHealth. These were the ones she gave me. They have a CFU count of 100 billion! (For the record, I was on heavy heavy antibiotics after my foot was runover in November and have...knock on wood...avoided the nasty flu that's going around).

2. Follow the directions on the bottle or box. Many need to be kept refrigerated.

Stay healthy!