Recent data suggests that the average American is bombarded with up to 5,000 varying media messages on a daily basis, which can make it tricky to discern fact from fiction. When it comes to your health, there should be absolutely no doubt that the products you select are effectively working to produce the desired results. This is especially true when it comes to the use of probiotics with antibiotics, because some forms are less effective when combined with antibiotics.
"Probiotics are made up of strains of bacteria or yeast that each interacts with the body differently," said Kerry Neville , a registered dietitian in Seattle. "That's why it's important to make an informed decision about the probiotic supplement you select. Different probiotic strains feature varying benefits for the body, and some bacteria-based supplements may not contain consistent strains. Also, there is a common myth that probiotics can't be used with antibiotics. In fact, there are different probiotic options available that can be beneficial before, during, and after antibiotic use, like Florastor®."
Facts and Myths: Probiotic Supplements and Antibiotic Use
The gut contains 70-80% of the body's immune cells, as well as hundreds of natural bacteria that work to fight infection and promote overall health. A probiotic supplement works to complement the efforts of these beneficial bacteria to put more muscle behind digestive health and the overall harmony of the body. While it is commonly agreed that probiotic supplements can be a beneficial addition to the daily diet, contradictory messages may leave consumers confused about how to incorporate a probiotic into their routine. This is particularly true for those looking to support an immune system that has been weakened by illness or antibiotic use.
Myth: Probiotics cannot be used with antibiotics.
The benefits of probiotic supplements come from live microorganisms that support the good organisms in your intestine. It is true that the effectiveness of bacteria-based probiotics, which are commonly found in supplements or in foods like yogurt, can often be compromised by the use of an antibiotic. Antibiotics are used to rid the body of invasive bacteria that can cause illness and disease, but an antibiotic cannot differentiate the good bacteria from the bad. This means that although the bacterial probiotic may be beneficial for your body, the antibiotic only recognizes it as a bacterial organism and destroys it. A yeast-based probiotic, like Florastor®, contains no bacteria and therefore is not compromised by antibiotics.
Fact: Use of a yeast-based probiotic can benefit the body during and after antibiotic use.
Because antibiotics attack all bacteria, they often upset the balance of the body by depleting the body's naturally existing good bacteria in addition to any invasive bacteria. This can leave the body more vulnerable to infection. The incorporation of a yeast-based probiotic, which isn't compromised by antibiotics, used in conjunction with antibiotic treatment can help to maintain healthy levels of good bacteria, stabilizing the internal balance of the gut and leaving the antibiotic to fight off invasive bacteria. Maintaining digestive health can support a healthy immune system before, during and after antibiotic use.
"While there may be concerns surrounding using a bacteria-based probiotic and simultaneous use of antibiotics, because yeast-based probiotics are not compromised, they can continue to support digestive health even when it is weakened from antibiotics," said Neville. "I recommend a reliable yeast-based probiotic like Florastor® to maintain digestive harmony and to support overall health. Incorporation of a yeast-based probiotic consistently supports your body before, during, and after illness and antibiotic use."