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Do Probiotics Cause Stomach Discomfort

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The Benefits Of Probiotics

Natural Remedies for Stomach Bloating: Probiotics

There is a lot of research happening in the world of probiotics, but even so, researchers dont fully understand all of the health benefits of having healthy gut flora. The body and the symbiotic relationship that it has with the microorganisms that call it home are complicated, but there is evidence that probiotics may help alleviate or prevent several health conditions as well as boost our overall health.

So Do Probiotics Cause Gas And Bloating

The short answer is that yes, some people do experience an increased amount of gas/bloating after taking probiotics. Gas is the bi-product of rapidly changing gut microbiota . This is a temporary, but normal, side-effect and should clear up soon after beginning your new regimen.

When you take probiotics, youre altering your gut flora. Anytime you make changes to this system , it can lead to things like gas, bloating, and flatulence. Gas is a bi-product of changing gut bacteria.

Even though probiotics are good for you, you may have to endure a bit of discomfort in the beginning. Kind of like when you were a kid and your parents had to convince you to eat your vegetables or take your medicine. It may be uncomfortable at first, but youre better off for it in the long run.

Some people dont experience gas, bloating or any side effects at all from taking probiotics. Your experience may be different, and thats OK.There are a wide range of reactions to probiotics that are completely normal.The good thing is that for those who do experience side effects from probiotics, they usually go away after taking them consistently for a few weeks.

Do Probiotics Cause Gas And What You Can Do About It

Probiotics are live bacteria that are good for your health, but theyre best known for their ability to help maintain a healthy digestive system. While they do have widely-studied health benefits, theyre also associated with a lot of things, including gas.

If youve ever experienced an upset stomach or flatulence after taking a probiotic, you might be wondering whether its really that healthy. For this article, we took a look at whether this relatively common side effect is normal or if it should be cause for concern.

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Probiotics Can Be Dangerous For Some People

People at higher risk for adverse effects, like infection, of taking too many probiotics are those with serious illnesses or weakened immune systems, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.

If you fall into either of those categories, it’s important to consult your doctor before taking probiotics.

Can Probiotics Cause Constipation

Kids Probiotic Gummies

Probiotics do not typically cause constipation. In fact, those who have sluggish bowels may find that a probiotic can help improve their bowel regularity. However, there are also probiotic strains that may slow down stool transit time if taken in higher doses such as Saccharomyces boulardi which those prone to constipation may choose to avoid. In this case, there would be other strains of live cultures which would be more appropriate for their needs such as Bifidobacterium lactis BB-12® which has been shown in clinical trials to promote bowel regularity in those with low stool frequency compared with a placebo2.

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Probiotics Causing Stomach Ache


We try so hard to be well. Have had a struggle with sinus, headaches, ears and stomach for about a year now and it was supposedly under control and geting better, then I took a large dose of biotics to replace the good bacteria as I had been under the weather and taking three weeks of anti biotics. Next thing I knew my stomach felt awful and has done ever since – nearly a week now. The pp2 and the ibs tablets do not help. Anyone else had any similar experiences?

0 likes, 31 replies

  • 7 years ago

    Hi Carmel,

    We seem to be chatting a lot on here! I can’t take probiotics either, they make averything worse. a simple explanantion could be that it’s not the right probiotics as there are many to choose from each offering a different mix of healthy bacteria, so if you choose the wrong one you get too much and it makes you sick.

  • Posted 7 years ago

    Morning Kerry. I am in the UK and it is 11.51 now. Am in agony with my stomach it is worse than before. I think it is about getting the right balance and you can have too much of the good bacterias just as you can have too much of the bad? Does that make sense to you? I had been on antibiotics for three weeks before and thought I needed to boost the good but took 60 billion and it must have been too much for it. Why it is worse five days later goodness knows. Am eating some blue cheese because it contains penicillin which is sort of the opposite thing.

  • Digestive Advantage Daily Probiotics

    Image courtesy Schiff

    Digestive Advantage’s formula is a daily supplement that contains 14 probiotics and prebiotics ingredients. It increases your bodys ability to absorb vital nutrients while destroying bad bacteria in the gut.

    It reduces bloating, diarrhea, cramping, and gas caused by digestive issues like IBS and food allergies.

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    Probiotics For Upset Stomachs

    Whether youre experiencing stomach discomfort at home, due to food poisoning or a viral infection, or in a hostel in Mumbai, due to travellers diarrhoea you are now aware that certain strains of probiotics may help to ease associated symptoms.

    As well as helping to manage the symptoms of these types of stomach upsets, probiotics can also offer a level of protection against developing them. Maintaining a healthy microbiome through regular use of a high-quality, daily probiotic supplement adds another layer of support for the gut, and may reduce the severity or duration of symptoms from any of the above types of stomach upset.

    The NHS8 has even reported on this topic on their website, examining a review which looked at a number of clinical studies on probiotics and stomach upsets, and concluding that they reduced the duration of diarrhoea by about 25 hours compared with no treatment.

    Mistake #: Youre Not Taking The Right Dose

    Do Probiotics Really Need to Survive the Stomach Acid?

    Like mentioned previously, the dose must be proven effective to make a claim on package in Canada. A dose is measured in colony-forming units . Look for a product with at least 10 billion CFU, because that appears to be a minimum dosage across the scientific literature, and take as directed, says Nielsen.

    The best way to ensure youre getting the most out of your probiotics, experts say, is to follow a balanced high-fibre food plan, understand the type of probiotic youre taking, review its clinical research, take the appropriate dose and store them according to the package directions. And if you have any concerns talk to your health care provider. Then youll have no worries that your probiotics are failing you.

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    How Do Probiotics Help Bloating

    Probiotics are live bacteria supplements that are available in the form of capsules or powders. You can find them in the health food aisle at your local pharmacy, pharmacy, or supermarket.

    Probiotics are found naturally in our bodies, but when taken as a supplement they help to improve digestion by breaking down food and getting rid of excess gas. Studies have shown that taking probiotics can improve digestive symptoms like bloating, flatulence, and abdominal pain.

    Meanwhile, prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates that act as the food source for probiotics. They nourish good bacteria in your gut to help them thrive. Prebiotics can improve digestion by feeding friendly bacteria like Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Streptococcus. They can also reduce digestive symptoms like bloating, stomach pain and discomfort, and flatulence.

    Common Side Effects Of Probiotics In Dogs

    Want to talk to an online vet? to connect with one quickly and easily!

    Probiotics are live bacteria presented in capsule or liquid form that provide numerous benefits to a dogs overall health. Bacteria species found in most canine probiotics include Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and S. thermophilus, all gram-positive bacteria that colonize within a dogs gastrointestinal system, eliminate harmful bacteria and restore optimal levels of good gut microbiota.

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    Taking Probiotics Can Cause Some Very Unpleasant Side Effects

    Next time, just have a yogurt. Romariolen/Shutterstock

    Your gut microbiome the large community of microorganisms that make their home in your colon can have all sorts of impacts on your body, both physical and mental. Many people take probiotic supplements to increase the amount of friendly or good bacteria in their guts. But theres a catch a new study has found that taking probiotic supplements can cause some pretty unpleasant side effects.

    The new research published in Clinical and Translational Gastroenterology found that those who take probiotics can suffer side effects like stomach pains, bloating, gas, and even mental fogginess. This is all because the good bacteria expand their territory and colonize the small intestine and stomach, not just the colon.

    Lead author Dr Satish Rao was inspired to carry out the research by a patient who, within just a minute of eating, would be affected by severe bloating and brain fogginess.

    It happened right in front of our eyes, Rao said in a statement.

    After conducting some tests, Rao found she had very high levels of D-lactic acid in her blood and urine, and that she regularly took probiotics and ate lots of yogurt.

    D-lactic acid is temporarily toxic to the cells in our brains, and can affect our ability to think properly. How is it produced? Probiotic bacteria release it as a product of fermentation when theyre breaking down sugar in our guts.

    Use Probiotics To Your Benefit

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    By now you should be more aware of the potential side effects of overdosing on probiotics and how to eliminate or minimize those side effects. If you continue to have discomfort while taking probiotics, I recommend you stop taking that particular brand.

    Because of the differences in dose, diversity, and delivery mechanisms, not all probiotics are created equal. One probiotic will not have the same benefits or side effects as another.

    For example, a probiotic using one strain of Lactobacillus acidophilus may help your digestive health, but another using a different Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain may not have the same effect. It may take some experimenting to determine the right brand for you.

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    Can Probiotics Be Harmful

    • Probiotics have an extensive history of apparently safe use, particularly in healthy people. However, few studies have looked at the safety of probiotics in detail, so thereâs a lack of solid information on the frequency and severity of side effects.
    • The risk of harmful effects from probiotics is greater in people with severe illnesses or compromised immune systems. When probiotics are being considered for high-risk individuals, such as premature infants or seriously ill hospital patients, the potential risks of probiotics should be carefully weighed against their benefits.
    • Possible harmful effects of probiotics include infections, production of harmful substances by the probiotic microorganisms, and transfer of antibiotic resistance genes from probiotic microorganisms to other microorganisms in the digestive tract.
    • Some probiotic products have been reported to contain microorganisms other than those listed on the label. In some instances, these contaminants may pose serious health risks.

    How Long Do Side Effects From Probiotics Last

    How you feelâand how long you feel that wayâreally comes down to the current state of your gut health and how your body processes the different probiotic strains. According to Shah, everyone metabolizes probiotics differently, so there’s really no definitive time frame for everyone.

    As a general rule, initial unpleasant side effects typically go away within the first two weeks, when your gut microbiome starts to reach its new state of balance. Many people start experiencing gut support benefits as soon as two days after taking probiotics, but it really depends on how imbalanced your gut is to start and which strains you’re taking.*

    If you don’t see unpleasant side effects start to diminish in the first couple of weeks, it’s a good idea to check in with your doctor and make sure there isn’t something else going on underneath the surface. For example, if you have small intestinal bacterial overgrowth or irritable bowel syndrome , the side effects may be more intense and long-lasting.

    As for the fringe benefitsâlike less bloating and more regular eliminationâthose should stick around for the long haul.*

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    Could Your Probiotic Be Making You Sicker

    A spread of colorful pills.

    Mindy D. had suffered from constipation for years when her gastroenterologist advised her, at 38, to take a popular over-the-counter probiotic. Over the next two years, she experimented with different dosages, sometimes taking it three times a day. But she kept getting sickersometimes so ill she couldnt work.

    We shouldnt just presume probiotics are safe.

    Her symptoms improved only after she traveled from Long Island to Georgia to see Satish S. C. Rao, a gastroenterologist at Augusta University. The key thing was taking her off probiotics and treating her with antibiotics, he says.

    That solution sounds bizarre, if, like many, you believe that antibiotics are bad and probiotics good. Millions of Americans take probioticslive bacteria deemed usefulassuming there can be only positive effects. The truth is that you really dont know how any probiotic will affect you. To quote the American Gastroenterological Association Center for Gut Microbiome Research and Education, It remains unclear what strains of bacteria at what dose by what route of administration are safe and effective for which patients.

    Its fineunless it isnt. Probiotics are capable of altering the microbiome in unpredictable ways, explains Leo Galland, an internist in New York who specializes in difficult digestions. Ive had patients who got gas and bloating, constipation or diarrhea from probiotics.

    Your Microbiome Is Unique

    How Probiotics Might Be Bad For You

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    Because these good bacteria already exist in the body, theyâre considered safe for most people. But there are some things to consider.

    They can trigger an allergic reaction. They might cause mild stomach problems, especially the first few days you start taking them. You might have stomach upset, gas, diarrhea, or bloating. Those symptoms usually go away after your body gets used to them.

    If you have an immune system problem or another serious health condition, you may have a greater chance of issues. Some reports have linked probiotics to serious infections and other side effects. The people most likely to have trouble are those with immune system problems, people who’ve had surgery, and others who are critically ill. Don’t take probiotics if you have any of those issues.

    Always talk to your pediatrician before giving probiotic supplements to your child. If you’re pregnant or nursing, you should also talk to your doctor before you try one.

    Most probiotics in the U.S. are sold as dietary supplements. That means the companies that make them don’t have to test their products and show that they work or that they are safe. More research is needed to confirm that probiotics are safe and effective.

    Ask your doctor which probiotics are the right ones for you. Be sure to stop taking them if you have any problems.

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    There Is No Way To Know What Dose You Are Taking

    The probiotic supplement market is relatively unregulated, so its hard to know how many CFUs we actually are consuming when we take probiotics in pill form. Moreover, its difficult to know if the organisms in those probiotics are even still alive and capable of doing their job, or if theyre dead and useless. Even if the bacteria are alive, theres a question about whether they can survive once inside your gut.

    If you are getting your probiotics from foods like store-bought yogurt, there are also very few ways to be sure that you are consuming a significant dose of good bacteria. The conditions that the yogurt is stored in down the supply-chain, the temperature of your refrigerator, and the strain of probiotic that the yogurt contains all have a significant effect on the dosage of CFU. Many of the beneficial microbes could have perished before you consume the yogurt.

    Culturelle Digestive Daily Probiotic

    Image courtesy Culturelle

    Culturelle’s Digestive Probiotic is a daily supplement that contains 3 highly active probiotics to improve digestion and reduce gas, bloating, cramping, and abdominal pain caused by IBS.

    Culturelle is a well-researched brand that has been clinically improved to help with bloating, gas, and IBS symptoms.

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    Do Probiotics Cause Stinky Gas

    Yes we have to address it, okay? Maybe this is TMI but you deserve to know: If youre taking a yeast-based probiotic, you may find the gas is a little smelly. Why? Well, because its gas but also because yeast is a live active agent, with very busy and sometimes volatile bacteria. Its why we put it into bread, as it rapidly expands and has quicker chemical reactions. Fortunately, none of Jetsons probiotics are yeast-based, so you can check your concern at the door.

    Many people are conscious of the fact that taking probiotics cause bloating and gas, but theyre also worried it might not be wise to take them before work .

    This is an easy fix: take probiotics that are not solely yeast-based. Although Saccharomyces boulardii is a common probiotic bacteria that is known to cause gas build-up, taking a probiotic blend of yeast and spore based probiotics can help to eliminate these uncomfortable side effects.

    Keep in mind that limiting complex carbs and moderating the fiber in your diet will also help limit gas, especially when youre adjusting to probiotics.

    What about eating probiotic foods like whole grains? Well, not only can they cause gas, but they also dont normally change the gut flora in your intestines . Whole grains do, however, play a role in moderating your blood sugar levels, so everything in moderation.

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