If you’re like most folks, the thought of bacteria probably sends a chill down your spine. And to be honest, we don’t blame you — especially seeing as the coronavirus is on the rise. But despite what you may think, bacteria is not the enemy.
In fact, your body is chock-full of bacteria — both good and bad — with as many strains and microbes as there are human cells. (We know, *mind blown*)
That said, the beneficial living bacteria that call your digestive system home are known as probiotics. These helpful gut bugs play a number of essential roles, such as aiding digestion, boosting immunity, and regulating hormones (aka — they help to keep your mood in check).
Needless to say, supporting a healthy gut is pretty important. But thanks to high-stress levels and the not-so-great American diet, maintaining good gut health is often easier said than done. So, what’s a gal to do?
With promises of supporting digestive health to mental health and just about everything in between, it’s really no surprise that the global prebiotics market is on track to reach a whopping $8 billion by 2026 — but what exactly are prebiotics, and how long do they take to work? We’ll tell you.
In this article, we’re exploring the fascinating world of gut health to uncover all there is to know about prebiotics. So if you’ve ever wondered if a prebiotic supplement is right for you or how to take one for maximum benefits — keep reading. Here’s our complete guide on prebiotics.
What Is Gut Health?
Before we dive into prebiotics, let’s chat a bit about gut health.
When you hear someone mention “gut health,” more often than not, they’re referring to an optimally functioning gastrointestinal (GI) tract.
Also known as the “gut” and digestive system, your GI tract is imperative to your overall health and wellness — it transports food from your mouth to your stomach and converts it into absorbable nutrients and stored energy. In addition, the gut is responsible for shuttling waste out of the body via your derriere.
When the gut is unhealthy, these essential processes don’t work as they should, which can lead to a whole slew of uncomfortable symptoms, such as:
- Weight gain
- Digestive problems like bloating, gas, or constipation
- Sugar cravings
- Increased stress
- Sleep problems
- Skin irritation
- Bad breath
When the harmful bacteria overrun the good bacteria and your delicate gut flora is disrupted, another common symptom that you may experience is a yeast infection. Not to worry, though; boric acid suppositories like The Killer can help.
Made with a single, fast-working ingredient (just boric acid), The Killer works to balance pH while maintaining healthy yeast levels so you can feel comfortable and fresh wherever you go.*
Get vaginal infections on the reg? After using The Killer, you may want to consider adding a prebiotic to your daily supplement lineup.
What Are Prebiotic Supplements?
Simply put, a prebiotic supplement is a formula made of specialized plant fibers and other ingredients that flourish and fuel up (or “feed”) the good bugs (aka probiotics) that live in the digestive system. In other words, prebiotics act as food for the beneficial probiotic bacteria in your gut.
Although a prebiotic supplement is a great way to give your friendly gut bugs the nutrients they need to thrive, you can also find prebiotics in many different foods — especially those that contain complex carbs, such as fiber and resistant starch.
These carbohydrates aren’t digestible by the body, so they pass through the gastrointestinal tract, where they then become a tasty snack for the bacteria and other microbes.
Some of the best prebiotic-rich foods include:
- Chicory root
- Jerusalem artichoke
As mentioned earlier, the bacteria in the gut influence a number of different processes within the body. To keep them strong, happy, and healthy, prebiotics are key.
Do Prebiotics Work Better When Combined With Probiotics?
Prebiotic foods feed, fuel, and strengthen healthy bacteria. And when your friendly gut microorganisms are in tip-top shape, they are better equipped to keep the unfriendly gut bacteria in check and harmful pathogens at bay.
In other words, probiotics and prebiotics are the ultimate health combination! When taken together, they work in perfect synergy to boost the population of good bacteria, reduce the colonies of bad bacteria, and banish inflammation.
How Long Does It Take for a Prebiotic Supplement To Work?
Pro- and prebiotics work differently for everyone because it depends on many various factors such as an individual’s age, existing bacteria, lifestyle, environment, and diet.
Generally speaking, though, most people start to experience significant benefits after taking a probiotic supplement consistently for two to three weeks. Why? Because it can take time for the probiotic bacteria to increase the population of good bacteria in your gut.
Just like how a gut doesn’t become unhealthy overnight, a gut can’t magically become healthy either. Overthrowing the bad guys that are already in power is a process — and it takes time. But by routinely taking a pre- and probiotic supplement like Gut Feelings Probiotics on a daily basis, your good bacteria will surely rule again — you just need to be consistent!
Whether you’re searching for advice on maintaining good gut health or wondering how to take your prebiotic supplement for the best benefits, you can always count on Love Wellness to have you covered. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you support a healthy and happy digestive system:
Tip #1: Take Pre- and Probiotics on an Empty Stomach
To reap the most benefits offered by a probiotic, it’s important to take your supplement on an empty stomach when acid levels are lower.
This will help the beneficial bacteria pass right through the acidic environment in your stomach so that they can reach the intestines, which is where they work their magic to strengthen digestion, boost immunity, and assist in many other critical functions.
Tip #2: Look for a Supplement That Contains a Wide Array of Bacteria
According to research, a diverse array of microbes in the gut makes the microbiome more capable and resilient. So when looking for a probiotic supplement, opt for one that contains many bacterial strains — like Good Girl Probiotics.
A vaginal probiotic that balances vaginal pH, our shelf-stable formula is made with eight healthy strains of good bacteria to support reproductive health organs, the gut, and the immune system.*
Tip #3: Stay Hydrated
In addition to taking prebiotics and probiotics, be sure to drink plenty of H2O to keep your body adequately hydrated. Water can help to regulate your bowel movements, prevent constipation, and break down foods, stomach acids, and enzymes.
So, how long do prebiotics take to work, you ask?
The short answer: it depends.
No two gut microbiomes are exactly the same, meaning the length of time it takes for prebiotics to work for your bestie can be different from your own experience. When prebiotics are taken consistently, most people typically start to feel the benefits after two to three weeks when they’ve boosted the population of good bacteria in their gut.
Thinking about taking a prebiotic? We recommend our Probiotics Kit — a healthy dose of all the “biotics” your body needs to support the health of your skin, gut, and vagina.*
Diversity, stability and resilience of the human gut microbiota | PMC
Prebiotics, probiotics and your health | Mayo Clinic
Global Prebiotics Market to Reach $8 Billion by 2026 | PRNEWSWIRE
‘Gut health’: a new objective in medicine? | PMC