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What do probiotics do?

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Probiotics help move food through your gut. Researchers are still trying to figure out which are best for certain health problems. Some common conditions they treat are:

There is also some research to show they help with problems in other parts of your body. For example, some people say they have helped with:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Infectious diarrhea (caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites)
  • Antibiotic-related diarrhea
  • Skin conditions, like eczema
  • Urinary and vaginal health
  • Preventing allergies and colds
  • Oral health

From: What Are Probiotics? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

Medline Plus: " Saccharomyces boulardii."

American Gastroenterological Association: "Probiotics: What They Are and What They Can Do for You."

Ciorba, M.  , 2012. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Cleveland Clinic: "Probiotics."

Floch, M.  , Sept. 24, 2014. Pharmaceuticals

Heller, K.  , 2001. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: "Oral Probiotics."

Neal-McKinney, J.  , Sept. 4, 2012. PlosOne

The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide: "Health benefits of taking probiotics."

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on June 25, 2018

SOURCES:

Medline Plus: " Saccharomyces boulardii."

American Gastroenterological Association: "Probiotics: What They Are and What They Can Do for You."

Ciorba, M.  , 2012. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology

Cleveland Clinic: "Probiotics."

Floch, M.  , Sept. 24, 2014. Pharmaceuticals

Heller, K.  , 2001. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: "Oral Probiotics."

Neal-McKinney, J.  , Sept. 4, 2012. PlosOne

The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide: "Health benefits of taking probiotics."

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on June 25, 2018

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How can you use probiotics safely?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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