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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SJSU chapter.

Why is it beneficial to take probiotics daily? To start, probiotics is a live microorganism that is found in natural food sources such as yogurt but is also available in supplements. Many studies have shown that it helps with balance of gut bacteria and has several health benefits. These benefits range from improving digestive health, immune system, reducing eczema flare ups and it can even help with weight loss. Probiotics can help people who experience digestive issues which can result in stomach cramps and diarrhea.

An important thing to note is that those who take antibiotics can experience a sensitive stomach due to the medication which can result from the antibiotics killing the good bacteria in your digestive tract. So, it is recommended to take probiotics because it can restore the good bacteria and decrease side effects from taking strong antibiotics. Probiotics can also help your heart and cardiovascular system by lowering your cholesterol levels and reduce blood pressure. But what most people don’t know is that these microorganisms are also found in yogurt, so having yogurt can be beneficial.

One common problem that people can experience are a lack of regular bowel movements. Being constipated and not being able to go to the restroom for two or more days can cause extreme discomfort and is usually a result of a poor diet or from taking medications. Taking probiotics can increase the bowel movements, soften stool and improve symptoms with constipation. Probiotics do take some time to work but they eventually help with mitigating digestive problems especially people who have hard stools, bloating or even can’t simply go.

Taking a laxative will not help long term and it will only treat the symptom on a short term basis rather than fix the issue overall. Laxatives such as teas or powders are not really a safe thing to do on a long-term basis so looking to natural alternatives for improving digestive health is a much better approach.

Probiotic supplements can be ingested in the form of powder, chewable pills and even in drink form. Some of these supplements provide varying amounts of probiotic cultures as low as 3 billion up to 50 plus billion. It all depends on what your doctor recommends as those supplements with higher cultures can aggravate your stomach so ask your doctor what is right for you.

If you are against taking supplements then you can always choose to simply add a serving of yogurt into your daily breakfast routine.  

Shellise West is the current campus correspondent at San Jose State University. Majoring in journalism with a minor in radio, television and film she plans to not fall short of fulfilling her dream as a sports reporter. A Bay Area native her hobbies include singing, dancing and listening to music. Follow Shellise on Twitter @SoulfulPenned.