Your gastrointestinal tract is not only central to the digestion and absorption of the foods you eat but also is tied heavily to your overall health.
Throughout its length, the gastrointestinal tract is increasingly colonized by microorganisms, collectively termed the gut microbiota, which plays a role in gut function, nutrient absorption, and even fat distribution (1). The gut and its resident microbes are also connected to your immune system, as over 70% of immune cells are in the gastrointestinal tract (2). Therefore, keeping your gut healthy can play a big role in keeping your body healthy.
Increasingly, scientists agree that the more diverse your gut microbes are, the more able your microbiota is to respond and adapt to changes in the environment. This can contribute to health benefits like improved digestion, a stronger immune system, and potentially a leaner body weight (3, 4).
In terms of diversity in the gut microbiota, one of the largest influencing factors is an unvaried Western-style diet, comprised mainly of processed foods. Such a diet has been consistently shown to lead to a lack of microbial diversity, resulting in digestion problems and increased risk for weight gain (3-5). Diets that contain lots of different types of plant foods have been linked to greater gut bacteria diversity, and intervention trials have demonstrated that fruits and vegetables, nuts, and grains can differentially impact the gut microbiota and promote gut health (6).
Beyond a nutrient-rich diet, probiotics and digestive enzymes can both support digestive health, each providing benefits in a different way. When used together regularly, it is possible to experience both short- and long-term digestive, immune, and overall health benefits.
Probiotics are not new, nor is the research that has been conducted on them. For instance, Nobel laurate Ilya Metchnikoff reported the unusually long lives of rural Bulgarians who consumed fermented dairy products back to the early 1900s. He speculated that the health benefits were related to intestinal bacteria (7). Probiotics are defined as “live microorganisms that when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit to the host” (8). Regular support via daily probiotic supplementation may keep the digestive tract in balance and promote microbiome diversity for better overall health (9).
In addition, enzymes play a critical role in the digestion of food and in overall health (10). They help break down the foods we eat into nutrients that can be absorbed by the body. Because most key nutritional components are too complex for immediate absorption, they must be broken down by enzymes (11). Supplementation with the right enzymes can help promote the availability of nutrients from those foods as well as limit the occasional bloating and gas that can occur when eating foods such as cruciferous vegetables and legumes or products containing lactose (12).
General recommendations are to take one capsule of Conventional Diet or Vegetarian Diet IsaBiome™ Probiotics each morning for a guaranteed 25 billion colony-forming units (CFU). One capsule of IsaBiome Enzymes can be taken at mealtimes to improve digestion and support the breakdown of foods. For different diets, there is the option of choosing conventional diet enzymes for mixed meals containing animal and plant-based foods or vegetarian diet enzymes if meals are comprised of mostly plant-based foods.
The guaranteed-potency IsaBiome Probiotics supply a diverse amount of probiotic strains daily, while IsaBiome Digestive Enzymes supports proper breakdown of foods. Together, the IsaBiome Daily Digestive Health System can encourage a more diverse and resilient gut microbiota. The more biodiversity your gut has, the better your digestion and overall health.
- Shreiner AB, Kao JY, Young VB. The gut microbiome in health and in disease. Curr Opin Gastroenterol. 2015 Jan;31(1):69-75.
- Lebeer S, Vanderleyden J, De Keersmaecker SC. Host interactions of probiotic bacterial surface molecules: comparison with commensals and pathogens. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2010 Mar;8(3):171-84.
- Heiman ML, Greenway FL. A healthy gastrointestinal microbiome is dependent on dietary diversity. Mol Metab. 2016 Mar 5;5(5):317-320.
- Vangay P, Johnson AJ, Ward TL, et al. US Immigration Westernizes the Human Gut Microbiome. Cell. 2018 Nov 1;175(4):962-972.e10.
- Conlon MA, Bird AR. The impact of diet and lifestyle on gut microbiota and human health. Nutrients. 2014 Dec 24;7(1):17-44.
- Holscher HD. Diet Affects the Gastrointestinal Microbiota and Health. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2020 Apr;120(4):495-499.
- Gasbarrini G, Bonvicini F, Gramenzi A. Probiotics History. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2016;50:S116-S119.
- Hill C, Guarner F, Reid G, et al. Expert consensus document: The international Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics consensus statement on the scope and appropriate use of the term probiotic. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2014;11(8):506-514.
- Kechagia M, Basoulis D, Konstantopoulou S, et al. Health benefits of probiotics: a review. ISRN Nutr. 2013 Jan 2;2013:481651.
- Ianiro G, Pecere S, Giorgio V, et al. Digestive enzyme supplementation in gastrointestinal diseases. Curr Drug Metab. 2016 Feb;17(2):187-93.
- Janiak MC. Digestive enzymes of human and nonhuman primates. Evol Anthropol. 2016 Sep; 25(5): 253-66.
- Deng Y, Misselwitz B, Dai N, et al. Lactose intolerance in adults: biological mechanism and dietary management. Nutrients. 2015 Sep;7(9): 8020-35.