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Probiotics and Teenagers

by Alison LaFortune, studioD

Probiotics are a type of good bacteria that teenagers can consume via yogurt or specialty supplements. Children and adults already have these good bacteria in their system, but probiotics are an added measure against problems that may arise in the digestive tract. Strong evidence exists showing that probiotics can help with many issues in the body, according to Julie Chen, M.D., in an article for Huffington Post.

Avoid Yeast Infections and UTIs

Probiotics can be useful in trying to prevent yeast infections or urinary tract infections. It is an all-natural step that a teenager can take to help her body heal itself. After taking probiotics, the urinary system can become more balanced, which is helpful for patients struggling with frequent UTIs.

Healthy Intestines

Supplements or yogurt with probiotics can also be linked to a better working digestive system. The bacteria found in probiotics is also found naturally in the intestines, and with the addition of supplements, children can help their digestive system to operate more smoothly. Probiotics have been associated with the successful treatment of irritable bowel syndrome and intestinal infections.

Support Immune System

There is encouraging evidence to suggest that probiotics can prevent or reduce the severity of a cold, maintains Dr. Chen. By eating yogurt with probiotics, a teenager can give his immune system a boost. Teenagers often have schedules packed with tests, sports and preparations for their future careers. If they can keep a cold at bay with probiotics, it would be a step in the right direction for their health.

Prebiotics and Probiotics are a Team

In addition to probiotics, teens can also take prebiotics to get the full health benefits. Prebiotics are considered food for probiotics. According to nutritionist Katherine Zeratsky, prebiotics are "non-digestible carbohydrates" that are found in whole grains, bananas, onions, garlic, honey and artichokes. Eating these items with yogurt or a probiotic supplement helps the good bacteria to do its job.

About the Author

Alison LaFortune specializes in articles on education and parenting. She has a Bachelor of Science in elementary education, and taught seventh grade science and language arts for five years.

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