2018-03-01 14:35:33 UTC

Probiotics 104: Safety of Probiotics

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Most probiotics are thought to be safe, even for people without a diagnosed digestive health issue. Though probiotics seem to be safe for most people, talk to your doctor before starting to take them. 

  • It is not known if probiotics are safe for people with weak immune systems. 
  • They might not be the right thing for some seniors. 
  • Some may interfere with, or interact with, medicines. 
  • Your doctor will be able to help you decide if probiotics are right for you.

 Kids and probiotics

  • Research about the use of probiotics in children has grown in recent years. 
  • Studies have shown that probiotics may help to treat infectious diarrhea in babies and small children.
  • Researchers are still not sure if probiotics can help kids with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). 
  • Ask your child’s doctor about probiotics before giving them to your child.

The future of probiotics

Overall, more research is needed about the safety of probiotics in general. Future studies will show whether probiotics can be used to treat diseases, are safe to use for a long time, and if they are harmful in larger amounts. These studies will also provide guidance on which probiotics to use for different health issues. 

©AGA, July 2016

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