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The #1 Best Supplement For Gut Health, Says Dietitian

Treating your digestive issues and giving your immune system a boost is easy with this one supplement.
FACT CHECKED BY Olivia Tarantino

Whether you find yourself dealing with digestive problems or find yourself struggling with immune health issues, your gut health can affect practically the wellbeing of practically every part of your body. That's why it's so essential that you keep your gut healthy with the right mix of foods that support the growth of beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract.

However, whether you're exposed to a virus or have a round of antibiotics mess up your gut flora, even the healthiest eaters can find themselves dealing with digestive issues from time to time. Fortunately, even if you don't have time to do a full gastrointestinal reset with your diet, the right supplement can get your gut feeling happier and healthier in a hurry.

However, with so many supplements on the market—with many making dubious claims about their efficacy—it's not always easy to choose the right one. That said, according to dietitians, there's a clear winner when it comes to the best supplement for gut health: probiotics.

probiotics
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"Probiotics are the best possible choice," says Trista Best, MPH, RD, LD, a registered dietitian with Balance One Supplements, who explains that these living bacteria are naturally found in the gut and can be replenished through the consumption of certain foods, although supplementation is often an easier means of adding probiotics to your daily routine.

"Probiotics are beneficial for gut health by preventing gut dysbiosis: an imbalance in good and bad gut bacteria," Best explains. "When bad bacteria overrun the gut, the individual is more susceptible to gastrointestinal issues, chronic inflammation, brain fog, fatigue, aches, and poor health in general, considering that the immune system is housed in the gut. Taking a probiotic supplement daily is the best line of defense in keeping your gut healthy and providing support for overall wellness."

RELATED: The #1 Best Supplement to Reduce Inflammation, Say Dietitians

So, just how effective are probiotics when it comes to improving the balance of bacteria in your gut and giving your immune system a much-needed boost?

A 2018 study published in Synthetic and Systems Biotechnology found that, among a group of adult study subjects from 25 to 45 years of age given either a probiotic drink or a placebo over a 12-week study period, those provided the probiotic supplementation had significantly lower rates of upper respiratory tract infections and flu-like symptoms with high fevers than those provided the placebo.

Furthermore, a 2020 research article published in Medicine found that, among a group of 72 children with antibiotic-associated diarrhea, probiotic supplementation reduced their abdominal pain and the overall duration of their symptoms.

So, whether your gut's feeling off from a new medication or you just want to give your immune system a leg up before heading back to the office this fall, probiotics might just give you the boost you need to feel your best.

For more great ways to improve your microbiome, check out the 20 Best Foods for Gut Health, and for the latest healthy living news delivered to your inbox, sign up for our newsletter!

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more