Probiotics are beloved by many health-conscious folks. They fit that sweet spot between natural (always good, right?) and medical (must have health benefits). I get legit hate mail if I write anything less-than-glowing about probiotics. One charming gentleman called me “fake news” and suggested I get my head out of my…
Drugstores are full of things that won’t necessarily heal us—vitamin C, homeopathic drops, probiotics—but we shrug and buy them anyway because, hey, they can’t hurt. But now we have some concrete evidence that probiotics can hurt, if they’re not exactly the right ones for the health condition you’re trying to treat.
Even at our cleanest, we are covered in germs and we are full of germs. It’s okay! That’s totally normal. These microorganisms are essential to our health. You probably don’t need to mess with them, but if you’d like to try, the terms to know are prebiotics and probiotics.
Our bodies rely on good bacteria to stay healthy, but ingesting that bacteria—whether in pills or in foods like yogurt—isn’t always clearly linked to better health. A new online tool uses published research to link brands to health conditions where they have been shown to be effective.
Probiotics—or so-called “good” bacteria—have garnered some Kardashian-level celebrity status in the health world for their benefits on your digestion and links to overall health. Then there are prebiotics. Wait, they’re the same thing right? Not at all. Let’s clear the confusion.
The “live active cultures” in yogurt may sound like a good source of probiotics, but there’s no guarantee they contain enough of those good bacteria to benefit your health.
Kefir—a fermented dairy beverage with a taste similar to drinkable yogurt—is packed with probiotics, but its tangy flavor and creamy body make it perfect for dips and dressings.
Chalk this up to childhood memories best forgotten: When I was in elementary school, my classmates dubbed me Yogurt Girl. This (hopefully affectionate) title was earned thanks to my propensity for eating a fruit-on-the-bottom yogurt single every day—not just during lunch, but also during snack. Twice-a-day yogurt…