Probiotics: Yay or Nay?
Definitely yay! Probiotics have been part of our everyday routine for years, and it’s just as important as brushing our teeth when we wake up in the morning. Probiotics are commonly known as friendly, good, and healthy bacteria that live in the human gut.
The gut flora has received considerable attention in recent years and scientists are constantly trying to learn more about the connection between gut bacteria and both mental and physical health. A couple of days ago, we found this very interesting study carried out by researchers from the University of Gothenburg and Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Sweden. The study, recently published by the Journal of Internal Medicine, found that dietary supplements with friendly gut bacteria may affect the human skeleton and help to maintain healthy bone density among older women. Amazing!
The study involved 90 elderly women, and they were randomised to receive either a probiotic supplement or an identical-looking placebo every day for a whole year. After a year, researchers measured the women’s bone loss in their lower legs and compared it with measurements from when the study began. The women who received the probiotic powder had lost only half as much bone compared to those who received inactive powders. Yes, you heard it right. The use of probiotic supplements resulted in a 50% reduction in bone loss.
Brittleness of the bones, or osteoporosis, is a bone disease that occurs when the bones become porous and weak, which can lead to increased risk of fracture. It’s the most common reason for a broken bone among the elderly, especially among elderly women. Unfortunately, a majority of women over 80 years of age have the disease. Osteoporosis is often first diagnosed after the first fracture occurs, and since the risk of fracture increases after the first break, preventative treatment is needed. Amazingly, this study opens the door to a new way to prevent fractures among older women. What a great discovery!
And you know what? The treatment was well tolerated by the patients! The women who received the probiotic powder did not produce more side effects than those experienced by the women who received the placebo. This is such great news! Probiotics for president!