Do Probiotics Cause Gas?

Reviewed by Onikepe Adegbola, MD PhD, Dipl. IBLM.

Introduction


Millions of people take probiotics every day to improve their gut health, but a recent study has shown that they can also cause gas and other digestive problems. While the benefits of probiotics far outweigh the minor side effects, it's important to be aware of them before taking them. So if you're considering adding probiotics to your daily routine, here's what you need to know.



What are probiotics?


Probiotics are beneficial bacteria found in certain foods and supplements. They work to improve the balance of bacteria in your gut, which can lead to many positive health effects. Probiotics have been shown to boost the immune system, improve digestion, and protect against infection.

But probiotics don't just help your gut-they can also improve your overall health. Probiotics have been linked to lower blood pressure, reduced cholesterol, and improved mental health.



The benefits of probiotics



The benefits of probiotics are vast and far-reaching. Here are just a few of the many reasons you should consider adding probiotics to your daily routine:

1. Probiotics improve gut health.

2. Probiotics boost the immune system.

3. Probiotics improve digestion.

4. Probiotics can help you lose weight.

5. Probiotics can help improve your mood.

6. Probiotics can help reduce inflammation.

7. Probiotics can help fight infection.

8. Probiotics can improve skin health.

9. Probiotics can help prevent and treat cancer.

As you can see, probiotics offer many health benefits that everyone can benefit from. So even if you experience minor side effects like gas and bloating, the benefits of probiotics may still outweigh them.



How to take probiotics


When it comes to taking probiotics, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Here are some tips on how to take them safely and effectively:

1. Start slowly. If you've never taken probiotics before, start by taking them slowly. Add one or two capsules per day and increase the dose gradually over time.

2. Look for a high-quality product. To choose a high quality probiotic supplement, purchase a professional brand from a company that complies with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) standards and procedures.

3. Take them with food. Probiotics are best taken with food to be properly absorbed by your body.

4. Store them properly. Probiotics should be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

5. Drink plenty of water. Taking probiotics can sometimes lead to constipation. To prevent this, drink plenty of water and eat plenty of high-fiber foods.



Probiotics and gas - the side effects


While the benefits of probiotics far outweigh the minor side effects, it's important to be aware of them before you start taking them. So if you're considering adding probiotics to your daily routine, here's what you need to know about the potential side effects:

Probiotics can cause gas and bloating. This is because they work to improve the balance of bacteria in your gut. When this happens, you may experience more gas and bloating than usual.

Probiotics can also cause diarrhea. This is usually a temporary side effect that goes away after a few days. However, if you experience severe diarrhea, it's important to stop taking probiotics and see a doctor.

Probiotics can cause constipation. This is usually caused by taking too high of a dose. If you experience constipation, it's important to drink plenty of water and eat plenty of high-fiber foods.

In rare cases, probiotics can also cause infections. This is usually only a concern for people who have weakened immune systems. If you experience any signs of infection while taking probiotics, it's important to stop taking them and see a doctor.

As you can see, the potential side effects of probiotics are minor and usually go away after a few days. But before you start taking them, it's important to be aware of them so you can be prepared.



How to deal with the side effects


If you're experiencing any of the minor side effects of probiotics, you can do a few things to help relieve them. Here are some tips on how to deal with the side effects of probiotics:

1. Drinking plenty of water can help relieve constipation.

2. Eating plenty of high-fiber foods can also help relieve constipation.

3. If you're experiencing diarrhea, cut back on the amount of probiotics you're taking until it goes away.

4. If you experience any signs of infection, stop taking probiotics and see a doctor.



The bottom line



Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that line your gut and help keep you healthy. While the benefits of probiotics far outweigh the minor side effects, it's important to be aware of them before you start taking them. So if you're considering adding probiotics to your daily routine, here's what you need to know about the potential side effects: Probiotics can cause gas and bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and in rare cases, infections. However, these side effects are usually minor and temporary. If you're considering taking probiotics, start slowly and look for a high-quality product. And if you experience any of the side effects, you can do a few things, outlined above, to help relieve them. So go ahead and give probiotics a try- the benefits are definitely worth it!

Do you want to learn more? Visit our blog for more articles about probiotics and gut health.

 

References

 

Gage, Joycelyn. “Understanding the Role of Probiotics in Supporting Digestive Comfort.” Nursing Standard, vol. 24, no. 4, June 2016, pp. 47–55, doi:10.7748/NS2009.09.24.4.47.C7297.

Dai, Cong. “Probiotics and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.” World Journal of Gastroenterology, vol. 19, no. 36, June 2016, pp. 5973–80, doi:10.3748/WJG.V19.I36.5973.

Marteau, Philippe. “Tolerance of Probiotics and Prebiotics.” Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, vol. 38, no. 6, June 2016, pp. 67–69, doi:10.1097/01.MCG.0000128929.37156.A7.

Barbara, Giovanni. “Probiotics in Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Where Are We?” Neurogastroenterology and Motility, vol. 30, no. 12, Nov. 2018, doi:10.1111/NMO.13513.

Whorwell, Peter J. “Do Probiotics Improve Symptoms in Patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome.” Therapeutic Advances in Gastroenterology, vol. 2, no. 4, June 2016, pp. 37–44, doi:10.1177/1756283X09335637.

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