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Why should you take probiotics?

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Quick Answer

Probiotics may benefit those with digestive problems, and they can also enhance the health of the immune system, notes WebMD. Probiotics come in capsule and powder form and are also available in foods, including supplemented snack bars, yogurts, infant formulas and dairy drinks.

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Full Answer

Probiotics contain microorganisms known as "good bacteria" that can protect the body from harmful bacteria, notes Mayo Clinic. Evidence is available that suggests that probiotics can help treat a variety of conditions, including vaginal yeast infections, irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea and certain intestinal infections. Probiotics may also help to reduce the severity of a cold or flu.

Medical professionals believe that certain digestive disorders develop when the amount of "good" bacteria in the intestines gets disturbed, notes WebMD. This imbalance can occur due to an infection or after taking antibiotic medication, and probiotics have the ability to help correct the imbalance and improve intestinal function. Probiotics can also help individuals to maintain a healthy immune system.

Probiotics gather inside of the small intestine and crowd out harmful bacteria in order to restore the balance of the intestinal flora, notes Healthline. Probiotics compete with harmful microorganisms for nutrients, and they also produce substances that prevent harmful bacteria from invading the intestines.

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