Prebiotics, Probiotics, and Skin Health
Probiotics and Prebiotics
Probiotics are live microorganisms (bacteria or yeasts) that have beneficial health effects. They are often referred to as ‘friendly’ bacteria, as they help keep the gut healthy. They occur naturally in the body but can also be taken in foods and supplements. They work in two key ways; firstly they can help restore the natural balance of the gut flora after it has been disrupted – after antibiotics for example. Secondly they help to balance the good and bad bacteria in the gut, by literally pushing the bad ones out.
Prebiotics are carbohydrates or fibres that reach the gut relatively unchanged, as the body cannot digest them. Here they provide a food source for the friendly bacteria, so that more of them can grow and thrive and their numbers therefore increase to outnumber the bad guys.
Prebiotic Effects of Beauty & Go
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Beauty & Go drinks contain a special type of fibre, extracted from fruits and vegetables called MACRO-antioxidants® or non-extractable polyphenol dietary fibre. MACRO-antioxidants® combine both antioxidant properties and the benefits of dietary fibre, in one substance. It passes into the large intestine undigested where it has a prebiotic effect, feeding and encouraging the good bacteria. In addition, the antioxidants attached to the fibre do their magic here as well, helping to keep the environment of the gut even healthier. Regular, daily intake of Beauty & Go drinks, over time can therefore contribute to maintaining a healthy gut environment and a favourable balance of gut bacteria.
Probiotics and Skin Health
Studies dating back as far as the 1960’s have shown benefits of probiotics for acne sufferers. This is believed to be due to their anti-inflammatory effects, which can also benefit conditions such as eczema and other allergic skin conditions.
Potential benefits of probiotics for skin health in general have been reported in various more recent studies. For example, a Korean study found that 12 weeks supplementation with a particular strain of lactobacillus, lead to improvements in skin hydration, reduced wrinkle depth, improved elasticity and facial gloss. The researchers concluded that supplementing with the probiotic would be a useful anti-ageing nutricosmetic agent.
6 Steps to Increase Your Gut Flora
So how do we ensure that we have a healthy gut flora? Although genes and other factors are believed to play a role, the composition and activity of the gut bacteria is very much influenced by our diet and we can actively improve it by making certain changes to our diet. Here at Beauty & Go, we strongly believe that feeding your skin from the inside is the best way to achieve deeper and longer lasting results, and this also applies to those ‘friendly’ bacteria.
- Eat plenty of fibre – include plenty of plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, lentils, nuts and seeds
- Include probiotic foods – fermented foods such as live yoghurt (dairy or non-dairy), sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha (fermented tea), tempeh, miso, pickles and natto
- Include prebiotic foods – chicory, Jerusalem artichokes , asparagus, onions, leeks, garlic
- Limit sugar, refined carbohydrates, processed foods, cow’s milk, red meat and alcohol, which can encourage the growth of bad bacteria
- Reduce stress – stress affects the balance of gut bacteria, so take steps to minimise it, such as meditation
- Give your levels a boost or top up, with probiotic and prebiotic supplements