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Probiotics for Bariatric Patients – Bariatric Edition

Hands up if you take probiotics … Hands up if you know that you should be taking a probiotic but you don’t understand why they are so important … 
This is my chance to explain all about probiotics and the benefits of eating foods rich in probiotics as well as using a supplement to improve your gut bacteria. I think that after reading all the benefits, it will make total sense as to why probiotics are so popular today. 
Did you know that the bacteria in your body outnumber your body’s cells 10 to 1? Most of that bacteria … well, it lives in your GUT. “Bacteria” sounds scary but most of these bugs are actually harmless. They are “good bugs”. 
We want these good bacteria in our guts because it is linked to so many health benefits. Some of these important benefits include improved digestion, weight loss, enhanced immune function, healthier skin, and a reduced risk of many diseases. 
For today’s article, let’s focus on the benefits listed above because the list goes on and on and on. 
These probiotics, I call them “happy bugs”, provide you with so many benefits when you eat them or take them in a supplement form. They get right to work and set up camp in your gut. You want that good bacteria in your gut. They help to devour the food that you eat and help your body digest, absorb, and assimilate your nutrients.
Probiotics are alive. They are living microorganisms. Most of the time they are a form of bacteria but they can also be specific kinds of yeasts. In your gut, lives a big community of very complex microorganisms. Another way to call it is your “microbiota” or your “gut flora”. In your gut lives up to as many as 1000 different microorganisms. That’s a pretty big community of helpers in your gut! This community does so many functions and they mostly live in your colon and large intestine. This is the very final part of your digestive system.
Your gut does more than just digest food. It also is a producer of many vitamins some of which include vitamin K and B vitamins. It also converts fiber into workable material like short-chain fats. These fats are important because they are going to also stimulate the immune system and make your gut wall stronger. If your gut wall is stronger, it is going to prevent unwanted things from getting into your body and initiating an immune response.
But – not everything in the gut is your friend. Your good gut bacteria is super sensitive to the diet that you are consuming. When this bacteria is not balanced, it is linked to many diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, certain types of cancers, Alzheimer’s, and depression (just to name a few of them). 
We are focusing today on probiotics and improved digestion, weight loss, enhanced immune function, healthier skin, and a reduced risk of many diseases BUT it is certainly worth mentioning that they can help to COMBAT irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. 
If you are struggling with certain digestive disorders that won’t get better, you may want to consider taking a probiotic supplement. They are considered safe and are a natural way to build up your healthy bacteria in your gut. Once starting your probiotics, your digestion should begin to improve. 
Improved digestion!! Why yes and you know what that means = less acid reflux. If we have better digestion, and less acid reflux, we will be better able to digest, absorb, and assimilate the foods that we eat post-bariatric surgery. In turn, this means fewer chances of experiencing nutrient deficiencies. 
Supplementation with probiotics is a great way to consume some “good for you” bacteria but another way is through the use of real, whole, live, natural, good quality FOOD. 
So what kinds of foods can we be eating to add to the good bacteria in our guts? Some of my favorite probiotic packed foods include high-quality yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso kombucha, and pickles. You can purchase these foods or make them in your kitchen. I make pickles, sauerkraut, kombucha, and kimchi at home and when I buy them, I make sure to read the labels to ensure that they are containing high-quality ingredients and not just vinegar. 
I think that the best route is to include some of the foods listed above in our daily diets but also to take a supplement to be sure we are getting everything we need.
Remember, we are what we eat. Going one step further, we are what we DIGEST. If we do not digest our foods well, we are missing out and so is our body. Eating a beautiful, nutrient-packed salad is great but what if you cannot digest that salad? We need to have our gut bacteria in balance to help do the job. 
Here is a link to purchase HIGH-QUALITY BARIATRIC EXPERT PROBIOTICS. They are great-tasting and well priced. Reach out if you want more information about probiotics and how to protect your gut bacteria.
Here’s to you and your healthy bugs!
Healthy Hugs xoxo

About the Author: Sheri Burke is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Bariatric Surgery Coordinator at International Patient Facilitators in Tijuana and Cancun, Mexico. She has worked with bariatric surgery clients for over 10 years and especially enjoys providing nutritional guidance to pre and post bariatric clients.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two teens and cooking up a nutritional storm in the kitchen.

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