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Do Probiotics Help Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Before understanding how probiotics help irritable bowel syndrome we need to understand about gut flora and how does it work.

What is Gut Flora?

Digestive track of human being comprise of almost trillions different types of bacteria. Bacteria are small size organisms commonly known as microbes. In fact, there are almost one thousand different types of bacteria are found in the gut of liver only. Majority of bacteria are present in the large intestine and these bacteria play very significant role in life:

  • Protects individual from infection caused by harmful bacteria
  • It facilitates to boast the immune system of gut
  • Combination of all normal bacteria are commonly referred as gut flora
  • Such bacteria produce many vital substances like vitamins that are rich in nutritional value.

Studies have revealed that composition of bacteria drastically affects that different aspects of have important human health. There are a number of factors that benefits the healthy relationship between the flora and the related host i.e., human body. On the contrary, there are some bacteria that also cause infection, such bacteria are known as pathogens.

Do Probiotics Help Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Do Probiotics Help Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Evidences have proven the fact that there are some probiotics help irritable bowel syndrome symptoms. Probiotics are micro-organisms that if present in adequate numbers promotes good health. Some people get confused between probiotics and other bacteria, probiotics are completely different from the other bacteria that can lead to illness.

Probiotics helps in regulating normal functioning of bowel movement, which includes sensation, immune function and motility in irritable bowel syndrome. These are readily available in the market in varying forms such as pills, liquid or in combination of the two. For some patients exchanging gut bacteria with probiotics can actually help in minimizing or eliminating the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.

Studies have revealed that Bifidobacterium infantis which is a type of probiotics is very helpful to improve the painful symptom of irritable bowel syndrome. Reviews shared by majority of patients clearly state that Bifidobacterium infantis is one of the most effective probiotics for getting relief from irritable bowel syndrome. Gas and bloating are the two very common symptoms that have shown constant improvement with intake of probiotic.

Medical practitioner always suggests keeping an eye on the irritable bowel syndrome symptoms and maintaining and progressing log of the same. This will help the patient to understand that the probiotic they are taking are working out for them or not.

Probiotics for Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Probiotics are found in various food items but yogurt is considered to be one of the best sources. It helps in keeping an adequate balance of bacteria in the gut, which in turn helps in strengthening the immune system of an individual by suppressing the irritable bowel syndrome symptoms.

Probiotic Strains in Yogurt

Yogurt is rich in bifidobacteria and lactobacillus. Lactobacillus helps patients who have problem of indigestion, including infection in colon and bifidobacteria helps in preventing and treating diarrhea. Researchers also explain that both these probiotics as highly effective for treating irritable bowel syndrome symptoms.

Safety Considerations

Although probiotics are safe but in some cases it may lead to causing some of the irritable bowel syndrome symptoms like gas, stomach infection, bloating and so on. Further, bacteria and lactobacillus can lead to weakening of immune system that may lead to other health issues.


There are many researchers who have conducted studies on probiotics on different patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome and that results obtained were mixed. This is no unusual because probiotics are like drugs that can have different impact on different patients. Further, there are numerous causes that can lead to IBS. Doctors also perform trial with different drugs to observe which drug has maximum impact on the patient.


  1. World Gastroenterology Organisation – Probiotics and Prebiotics: https://www.worldgastroenterology.org/guidelines/global-guidelines/probiotics-and-prebiotics/probiotics-and-prebiotics-english
  2. Mayo Clinic – Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/irritable-bowel-syndrome/symptoms-causes/syc-20360016
  3. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) – Probiotics: https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/probiotics-what-you-need-to-know

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 8, 2023

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