Achieving good balance in your body is the benefit to taking probiotics, say fans.
So what are probiotics? Think of them as good bacteria to ward off bad bacteria. In many cases Probiotics are living microorganisms that are similar to beneficial microorganism found in the human gut.
Doctors say probiotics help treat ailments such as irritable bowel syndrome and urinary tract infections.
Where do you get them? Most grocery stores, pharmacies and health food stores sell them as a dietary supplements and foods. Not only are they in tablets and powders, but in yogurt, unfermented milk, sauerkraut and soy beverages.
There’s even a new flavored water, PHD coming on the market soon. “Because we wanted to keep the probiotics alive, we used a different delivery system. We keep the probiotics separate from the product in a special bottle cap and that allows us to go into almost any format. We could do teas, we could do waters, we could do juices,” said Dave Tabaczynski of Mass Probiotics.
So are they safe? “I would say that most people could benefit from them if they have a bit of GI symptoms and that generally they’re safe," says Dr. John Birk of the UConn Health Center.
It is important to point out probiotics are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.