When bodies are young it may be easy to take for granted that everything functions well and feels generally strong and healthy. As you get older it becomes more difficult to ignore that good health is truly one of the most valuable aspects of enjoying a high quality of life. When neglected it may be apparent that not everything in your body looks or feels how you wish it would.
Everyone has trillions of bacteria living in their intestines, predominately in their large intestines. This helps with the immune system, digestion and other bodily functions. Some of the bacteria helps and fights disease and ailments while others cause it. That is why it is essential to have a balance of good and bad bacteria. Adding a daily probiotic is integral to this balance and to promoting robust overall health. Probiotics can assist seniors in fighting off unfavorable bacteria such as Clostridia and Bacteroides which are more frequent with age. They also help to replenish good bacteria such as bifidobacteria and lactobacilli which decrease with age. Scientists concluded that 60 to 70 percent of a child’s gut was bifidobacteria and that by the time a person is elderly it is only a mere 5 percent. This could be a contributing factor as to why disease is more prevalent as you age.
As you get older the diversity and amount of bacterial species in the gut lessens. This decrease affects how well the body can perform certain functions and my lead to your body having trouble functioning as it had in your younger years. Various studies have discovered links between changes in the gut microbiome and illnesses including dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s and Type 2 Diabetes.
Not having a balanced gut can cause many unpleasant digestive conditions including diarrhea, constipation, bloating and even irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). For elderly people taking a probiotic to help balance the good and bad bacteria can help limit how often they suffer from diarrhea and how long the bouts are when they do occur. As a senior you may be on medications that cause constipation as a side effect or you may find yourself less regular due to a diet low in fibre or a decrease in physical activity. Probiotics can assist those suffering with constipation greatly by rebalancing the gut flora, increasing mucus production in the intestines and improving how often you have a bowel movement as well as the consistency. While these digestive issues are often very unwanted it is important to be aware that they are more than just nuisances at the time. They can also be early indicators of more serious issues if the balance in the gut is not restored. A fragile immune system, difficulty focusing, mood swings and allergies can all result.
Many people notice that as you get older foods you could once indulge in with abandon now are more difficult for your systems to handle. If you are finding that you are more lactose intolerant and can no longer easily digest sugar in dairy products probiotics may help. Likewise, they can be beneficial in relieving various food and skin allergies.
No one wants their breath to smell bad. Sometimes, no amount of brushing or mouthwash seems to help. This is because a lot of bad breath comes from the gut. By caring for your gut with a daily probiotic you may be able to improve the smell of your breath.
Keeping your brain sharp is important as your age. Probiotics have been shown to improve cognition and mood. When your gut becomes inflamed due to an imbalance of bacteria and is left unresolved for an extended period of time bad bacteria and other substances can leak into your bloodstream and eventually get to your brain. This causes inflammation called neuroinflammation or inflammation in the brain. Increased findings are showing a link between inflammation in the gut, inflammation in the brain and cognitive diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Elderly people often have weakened immune systems allowing them to be more susceptible to illnesses which they will in turn have more trouble fighting and often experience worse symptoms then their younger counterparts. Probiotics can be a crucial factor to strengthen immunity.
Your senior years are a time to relax and enjoy the life you built. A daily probiotic can help to ensure that you feel your best and your body performs well while also helping to prevent debilitating and often life threatening diseases.