Probiotics and Fatigue: The Truth Behind the Connection
Many modern professionals live in fast-paced environments that require them to spend most of their free time reaching goals. While the need to complete tasks for professional and personal reasons is important, we retain the need to rest and sleep. When we fail to give our bodies the time they need to rest, it is common to experience symptoms of fatigue. Fatigue can make committing to other goals and activities difficult, especially when your obligations promote increased exhaustion.
Fatigue is a growing issue in modern society, with more people developing symptoms annually. Overcoming fatigue is becoming increasingly challenging since we do not always have the time to recover. This has led people to consider finding supplements that can reduce the severity of fatigue.
There has been a surge in popularity surrounding probiotic supplements due to their range of health benefits. While not everyone is ready to accept probiotics as a health tool due to the stigma associated with holistic alternatives, probiotics are seeing more use.
While probiotics have a growing number of users, there are still concerns about whether they can help certain health issues. Among the people who have turned to probiotic support for their health is a demographic claiming their supplements mitigate symptoms of fatigue. This has been met with doubt by individuals with more interest in modern medicine, but there might be more to these claims than you realize.
What is Fatigue?
The term "fatigue" is often disregarded since it is closely related to tiredness, leading some people to view fatigue as laziness. Unfortunately, fatigue is a serious issue in modern society with legitimate medical standing. Fatigue is associated with lifestyle issues that prevent us from resting, as our bodies need after a long day. Despite many cases of fatigue resulting from irresponsible behavior (i.e., staying up all night watching television), the effects of fatigue cannot be disregarded.
Fatigue can make it impossible to function and even cause us to collapse in the middle of the day because our body can no longer tolerate the strain. This issue is serious enough that fatigue qualifies as a serious health risk to people working in high-impact environments. Understanding the factors that can cause fatigue is essential to determining whether you are at risk of a fatigue-induced collapse.
The main contributors to fatigue are lifestyle factors in which someone fails to consider their physical needs. Poor diet and sleep habits radically increase your chances of experiencing fatigue in the middle of the day. Unfortunately, lifestyle-induced fatigue is the easiest to overcome since changes to your daily routine can eliminate the issue.
Dedicating yourself to a balanced diet and getting the 7 to 8 hours of sleep recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) can eliminate fatigue risk. You might experience fatigue from a career requiring extensive physical activity like construction or professional sports. Dedicating too much time to physical activity can elevate the risk of fatigue throughout the day. That said, other factors that contribute to fatigue are outside our control.
Certain diseases and disorders cause fatigue as a symptom, which is not surprising since illnesses can sap our strength. While many conditions are temporary or can be resolved by altering our lifestyle (i.e., losing weight to counter obesity-induced fatigue), others result from chronic conditions with no cure. Experiencing fatigue due to immutable factors or during a transition to a healthier lifestyle can make it difficult to accomplish certain tasks and meet your responsibilities. This is why people have begun using certain health-boosting tools to overcome their fatigue in the short term. The question is whether probiotics are a viable tool for this purpose or whether they are unrelated to fatigue.
Are Probiotics Connected to Fatigue?
Probiotics are an interesting bacterial phenomenon discovered in 1905 thanks to Stamen Grigorov and cemented in 1907 thanks to Ilya Mechnikov. In the 118 years since Grigorov's discovery, probiotics have become a major product in countless stores worldwide. Many foods are advertised as probiotics because they have naturally occurring probiotic organisms.
The most common probiotic products on the market are dairy products like yogurt since dairy is highly conducive to certain genii of probiotics. Some of the most effective probiotics are those from the genus Lactobacillus, which implies dairy due to the "lacto-" prefix. While not all probiotics are dairy-based, they are extremely common since lactic acid ferments the food into a sustainable biome for the organisms.
This is to say that probiotics are fascinating organisms linked to several health benefits. The main benefit of probiotic consumption involves improving gastrointestinal health. This makes it seem unlikely that probiotics could have any impact on fatigue, which is primarily associated with physical exertion. However, several chronic health issues induce fatigue (as mentioned earlier).
These chronic conditions can occasionally be connected to gastrointestinal and digestive health issues. Specifically, there has been a connection between irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and fatigue. Additionally, general discomfort and pain in the gastrointestinal tract can cause severe abdominal pain, depending on the circumstances.
While it might seem like a trite concept, abdominal pain and gastrointestinal distress can cause physical strain on the rest of the body. This means we are burning more energy when we are in pain and exhausting ourselves despite being unable to stop the pain. The longer the symptoms last, the more energy we burn and the more exhausted we become. This means treating the effects of gastrointestinal distress can go a long way to treating fatigue since we are reducing the strain causing our fatigue.
This is where probiotics come into play since many probiotic products are marketed specifically as a treatment for gastrointestinal issues. The problem is that there is still a significant disconnect between people's perceptions of probiotics and what they can do. Therefore, before experimenting with probiotic supplements, it is best to determine what they do and how they improve gastrointestinal health.
What Do Probiotics Do For Gut Health?
Gastrointestinal distress is common for millions of people, especially those who subsist on an unbalanced diet or frequently consume fast food. The number of chronic conditions that impact the gastrointestinal tract is high, and many lack effective cures. Most chronic health issues can only be treated through medicine and lifestyle changes. While these are the most effective techniques for effecting lasting changes to your gastrointestinal health, there are other tools you can use to enhance the results.
One of the more surprising sources of gastrointestinal health improvement is probiotics, which release beneficial bacteria into our gastrointestinal tract. These bacteria naturally cooperate with the bacteria native to our stomachs, meaning they can synergize and work together to improve the environment. This is especially useful when our natural gut bacteria are experiencing a diminished population. The support from probiotic organisms gives the natural gut bacteria time to replenish their numbers while the probiotics improve our health.
Consuming probiotics has been scientifically linked to restoring gastrointestinal balance. Considering there are more species of harmful bacteria than beneficial ones, the ability to reinforce our natural gut bacteria with probiotic organisms can be a game changer. A bacterial imbalance in the gastrointestinal system can lead to serious distress contributing to fatigue. Other aspects of gastrointestinal health contribute to fatigue by causing physical strain.
One of the biggest sources of gastrointestinal distress is IBS, which makes an essential function an extremely painful experience. Fortunately, probiotic organisms have been linked to treating IBS in a limited capacity, which could minimize fatigue symptoms. While more research is needed, early studies reveal that probiotic organisms can reduce IBS symptoms and make the condition more manageable.
Additionally, probiotics from the Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus genii have been connected to reduced symptoms of ulcerative colitis. Ulcerative colitis, like IBS, has been known to cause fatigue due to the physical strain associated with the symptoms. Taking probiotic supplements using organisms from those genii could reduce the symptoms and minimize the associated fatigue. This makes probiotics a highly effective tool for improving gastrointestinal health and reducing their effect on your energy.
That said, gut health is not the only thing that can induce fatigue and cost us energy. Other problems can arise, making it difficult for our bodies and minds to function. Oddly enough, some of these issues can be addressed with probiotics, though to a somewhat lesser extent than their effect on gastrointestinal health. Addressing the other potential sources of fatigue is essential to overcoming the issues fatigue induces. The trick is figuring out how probiotics interact with these causes of fatigue.
Other Ways Probiotics Mitigate Fatigue
While fatigue is commonly associated with physical strain, either due to exercise, lack of sleep, or illness, other sources exist. Another source of fatigue is significantly more nefarious than physical fatigue. Our minds are remarkably advanced and capable of amazing things when properly educated. Unfortunately, our mental process is directly connected to our health since stress and mental health issues can cause a physical response.
When we are mentally taxed due to mental illness or stress, we commonly experience fatigue as the strain on our minds drains our bodies. Additionally, certain aspects of physical health can trigger psychological responses that exacerbate the physical consequences. Gastrointestinal distress can be a source of physical discomfort that induces fatigue, among other symptoms.
Consuming probiotics can reduce gastrointestinal distress, but it has also been connected to moderate improvements in mental health. Several animal and human studies have connected probiotic use to reduced symptoms of mental health disorders.
One review of 13 human studies discovered that probiotics from Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus strains had beneficial effects on subjects with anxiety, depression, autism, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). These mental health issues can cause our bodies to experience symptoms of fatigue due to mental strain. The tests discovered that the benefits of probiotics on these conditions took 1 to 2 months to manifest but ultimately yielded favorable results.
While probiotic consumption can help mitigate certain factors of these mental health issues, it is important to remember they are not a substitute for professional care. The best way to handle OCD, depression, anxiety, etc., is to seek qualified care from a mental health professional. Probiotics will only help you minimize the symptoms of fatigue they might cause.
Aside from mental health, probiotic consumption has been connected to improvements in the human immune system. Considering our immune system is responsible for fending off infections and diseases, it greatly protects us from fatigue. Certain illnesses and diseases can cause fatigue as a symptom, even if the illness is temporary. Consuming probiotics can reinforce the immune system and give it a little extra firepower when fending off these health threats. In this way, probiotics offer indirect protection against fatigue.
Probiotics are fairly versatile and can offer several benefits that improve physical and mental health. Unfortunately, the biggest challenge is finding a reliable probiotic source that focuses on the most effective strains.
Finding the Right Blend
Fatigue is an increasingly common issue in modern society since people are given less time to recover from strenuous professions. Combined with the increase in health issues over the last decade, people commonly experience fatigue in their lifetime. While altering your lifestyle can fend off fatigue in most circumstances, other causes can take our choice away.
Probiotics have become a venerable tool for improving health, especially in communities that want to minimize their use of pharmaceutical-grade supplements. Fortunately, many of the issues probiotics treat have an effect on fatigue symptoms, making them more valuable than we initially realized. The problem is finding a probiotic supplement that is completely natural and comes from a reputable vendor.
We at Teami believe in offering natural solutions for health and beauty issues, including fatigue. That is why we have cultivated a catalog of products made from several healthy, natural substances. Among our products is our Gut Love Probiotic + Prebiotic Powder, which can provide the necessary dose of probiotics needed to improve your resistance to fatigue. We encourage you to visit our website and assess our products personally so you can choose the one that suits your needs.
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