Try these free teen weight loss programs

In today’s times, the number of teens suffering from obesity is startling. In such a scenario the emergence of free teen weight loss programs has come up as a much needed relief. Here is a look at two such programs:

 

 

Slim Kids

Slim Kids is a weight loss program that first educates teenagers about the things that have made them overweight and then teaches them the ways to get rid of the extra pounds. It offers a guide that tells teens about the food items that can help them to lose weight along with the requisite exercises that will help to speed up the process.

 

SparkTeens

SparkTeens is an extension of the very popular SparkPeople program for adults. It allows the teenagers to record their weight, their food intake details as well as the required amount of exercise. It is a community based program in which the teens encourage each other to reach an ideal weight.

 

These two programs have proved to be very successful and have often been suggested by the experts for healthy weight loss.

 

Image source: Getty

 

Tips for middle aged men to lose weight

They eat whatever they want whenever they want and remain a normal size- regardless of whether or not they bet on 15 cheeseburgers at a  time, or gulped down a pint of beer during a match- men in their 20s and 30s can lose weight by just eating a bit less and moving a bit more.

But when men reach middle age, their metabolism slows down, and if they practise a sedentary lifestyle, it becomes much more detrimental to their waistline and health. They may drink less or cut down on carbs, but the pounds wouldn’t drop away. Their magical ability to shift the pounds seems to have left them.

Staying fit, however, does not have to be an uphill struggle for middle aged men. A few small changes in your diet and exercise routine can help shed those unwanted pounds and lead to a healthier lifestyle.

weight loss tips for middle aged men

Harness stress fat

Much of the fat accumulated during the middle years is around the waist. It commonly is called stress fat since it is the main source that provides middle aged men energy to fight stressful situations. But, too much of stress fat is dangerous because it can give you a heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, stroke, diabetes, and cancer.

You might believe that proceeding with an extreme calorie restriction could help revive this calorie-burning metabolism. Don’t. Calorie restriction depresses the metabolism further.

You should aim for a healthy mind to achieve a healthy body. You honestly can’t lose 20 kgs for your daughter’s wedding; aim at looking ‘fit’ which feels better than ‘thin.’ 

Exercise seriously

Not too much but serious exercise cannot just improve your quality of life but, also extend it. A study done by researchers at Uppsala University in Sweden showed that individuals with high activity levels (three or more hours of physical activity like gardening, swimming laps or joining an intramural sports team) lived more than two years longer than people with a sedentary lifestyle. Which means- two more years of doting on your wife, two more years of nagging your son-in-law, two more years of discussing politics, two more years of travelling around the world, and two more years to do what you couldn’t do till now. Who wouldn’t like that?

weight loss tips for men

Eat mindfully

Your growing age makes your capacity to metabolise fat less efficient and which in turn makes it more difficult for you to maintain the same weight with the same level of effort. You must have understood the importance of making healthy diet choices to lose weight.

The first step is to break down your traditional three-large-meal eating routine into five or six smaller meals. This will make you feel satiated throughout the day and you will not tend to overeat at mealtimes. This practise also stabilizes the metabolism in middle aged men by turning their body into a calorie-burning furnace.

You should add more fruits and vegetables to your meal plan to ensure that your food choices are healthy and are helping you to lose weight. Research conducted at Northwestern University found that individuals can significantly cut their risk of obesity by eating more fruits and vegetables.

weight loss tips

Entering the middle age can limit your body in many ways. Therefore, it is important to consult a medical professional to evaluate your current level of health, before you implement any workout routine or diet plan.

By middle age, most individuals will have established a pattern of physical activity, and suddenly altering that can lead to health complications or injury. To prevent this, start your exercise plan slowly.

The same principle applies to your diet, so be sure not to make any drastic changes, or you may risk burning out and abandoning your diet and exercise plan altogether.

Image Source: Getty

How to Treat Clients with Adult Acne

With a 200-percent increase in the number of adults seeking acne treatment and close to 85 percent of adults experiencing some form of acne in their lifetime, it comes as no surprise that estheticians have their hands full. Since culprits run the gamut from hormonal fluctuations to stress to environmental factors, finding a solution can be as frustrating for the skin pro as it is for the client. Here’s what our experts have to say about effectively treating clients with adult acne.

Q What are the most effective in-spa treatment options to address adult acne?
A
While acne is a medical condition that has to be diagnosed by a medical professional, as estheticians we can perform professional facials that help improve the skin’s appearance. The Repêchage Hydra Medic Facial with Desincrustation Mask in-spa treatment, designed for oily problem skin, deep cleanses and helps control the appearance of oil while helping maintain moisture. This refining treatment leaves skin with a renewed appearance of freshness. To maintain optimum skin condition, this protocol should be performed monthly.
—Lydia Sarfati, Master Esthetician and Repêchage CEO and Founder

Q Are chemical peels too aggressive for the adult acne patient?
A
I choose gentle peels like the PCA Skin 4% Pure Retinol Peel. It helps increase cell turnover, brighten the complexion while fighting breakouts and also makes the epidermis more compact and organized. This leads to a clearer complexion that also will have fewer fine lines. Ultimately, the skin will look more rested and have a glow.
—Dr. David J. Goldberg, Director, Skin Laser & Surgery Specialists of NY and NJ, and PCA Skin Ambassador

Q What is new in adult acne treatment?
A
Traditional benzoyl peroxide (BPO) products can be very drying and irritating. There are good micronized, liquid BPO options that are more effective for adult acne. Additionally, products that contain BPO in combination with gluconolactone for soothing breakout control are an even better choice. My favorite is PCA Skin BPO 5% Cleanser.
—Goldberg

Q Any advice for estheticians treating adult acne patients?
A
Regardless of the form of acne, we know that sebum production or oil is the catalyst for the series of events that result in acne and blemishes. Excess sebum is often associated with enlarged pores, a tendency toward follicle congestion and an oily T-zone. With any form of acne, you have to deal with the three factors: sebum, bacteria and enclosure. Using skincare products that deep clean and help absorb excess oil while moisturizing the skin can be beneficial towards busting blemishes.
—Sarfati 

This story originally ran on AmericanSalon.

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How To: Nelly De Vuyst’s Biotense Cosmos Ecocert Facial

 

The world’s first Cosmos and Ecocert organic certified facial has made its way into the treatment room. The Nelly De Vuyst BioTense facial (50 minutes, starting at $160) uses ultra-hydrating and strong anti-aging ingredients to treat dry and sensitive skin. The active components for the facial include amino acids, moisturizing and regenerating properties, vitamin C, fragmented hyaluronic acid, and extracts from organic plants for a neuro-relaxing experience. Each of these key ingredients were hand-selected for the best health and well being for your client’s skin, but for the environment, too. The BioTense facial is completely hypoallergenic, gluten free, biodegradable, sulfate free, cruelty free, fair trade, GMO free, alcohol free, paraben free, and vegan.

Interested in trying it out? Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to perform this facial for your clients:

1) Start with a clean face: Like any other facial, removing any makeup or debris from the face is important so you’re not clogging your client’s pores. To do this, use the BioTense Cleansing Milk. This gentle, light-milk cleanser removes all traces of impurities in one swift motion using argan oil components. Following the cleansing milk, use the BioTense Foaming Gel to deeply clean your client’s skin. Once this gel comes in contact with water, it changes into a foam cleanser, eliminating all impurities that might have been missed by the cleansing milk. This gel is ideal for respecting your client’s physiological pH in their skin.

2) Extract dead skin cells: Apply the BioTense Gommage and gently massage away the dead skin cells. This exfoliant will refine the skin and restore a healthy, natural glow to your client’s face. After the extraction, apply the BioTense Serum. While doing this, use the pincements de Jacquet technique by lightly and quickly pinching the skin. It’s one of the best French beauty rituals to slim and de-age the skin, leaving your client’s face beautifully toned and firmed.

3) Lift and oxygenate: Using the BioTense Extract and BioTense Cream, massage the face, neck, and décolleté. Formulated specifically for mature, dehydrated, and devitalized skin, the plant-extract helps protect the nature of the hydrolipidic film through regenerating and moisturizing.

4) Even out the complexion: Apply the BioTense mask, filled with essential minerals and amino acids, to even out complexion. Made for all skin types, including those with sensitive skin, this mask is known for being ultra-moisturizing. While this mask sits on her face, the skin will absorb ultra-rich antioxidants and vitamins to moisturize and naturally rebalance complexion. Then, rinse off the mask so the skin is ready for the next step.

5) Tone and contour: Following the mask, apply the BioTense pH Toner. A lot of limestone can be found in tap water, so this will help restore your clients skin’s physiological pH level and revive their face overall. Afterward, use the BioTense Eye Contour Gel to decrease the appearance of puffiness, fine lines, and dark circles around the eyes. To finish the treatment, use a healthy amount of the BioTense cream. This formula exclusively incorporates a powerful synergy of fragmented hyaluronic and biopolymers for immediate results.

“This treatment offers the utmost in safety and security combined with remarkable hydrating, firming and three-dimensional lifting results,” says Brenda Lemco, manager at CurAge Spa.

For more information on Nelly De Vuyst products and the Biotense Facial, visit their website.

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Inside a Spa Director’s Beauty Bag: Shannon Mariani

 

Shannon Mariani, spa director at The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas, shares some of her personal faves.

Shannon Mariani

Wei of Chocolate Inspired Salt Dark Chocolate: “I like to keep a few of these in my bag for a mid-afternoon snack. It’s healthy dark chocolate and vegan. I love the concept behind the company and setting your intention while focusing on eating the chocolate.”

Ilia Tinted Lip Conditioner with SPF 15: “It goes on smooth, lasts, and moisturizes with a hint of color—perfect for a casual summer look.”

Whish Coconut Milk Self Tanner: “I love the glow this self tanner provides along with the shea and mango butter to keep my skin soft. Plus, it has firming ingredients to work on skin’s elasticity.”

Naturopathica Carrot Seed Soothing Facial Oil: Living in a dry climate, sometimes I need something extra on my face, and a little of this facial oil goes a long way.”

Freedom Deodorant: “This natural deodorant is aluminum-free and works. I met the founder of the company, and she challenged me to start to think about what I am using for deodorant. Silly, but I hadn’t thought about it before. When I started to do research, I changed over immediately and will never go back.”

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Four Fall Makeup Trends from Ashlee Glazer

 

Celebrity makeup artist Ashlee Glazer has 10 years of experience in the beauty industry. As Laura Gellar Beauty’s first ever global director, Glazer is qualified in many techniques and methods for creating a variety of great makeup looks. Here, she shares some of the top makeup trends of the season.

Green Eyes: Green is a must-have this season, as it is making appearances on the streets and runways. Whether it be an all-over hue or accent liner to enhance your

                          Ashlee Glazer

look, this trend is easily achievable and customizable to personal styles. Deep emerald all over the lid creates a fun, dramatic look that can be recreated using Laura Geller’s Foliage Fabulous 3-piece Collection.

Smokey Eyes: One of the hottest looks we will see this fall is the smoky eye trend. To create the perfect ‘cool girl’ smoky eye, use black with accents of grey, silver, and cool tones all over the lid. Try applying black eyeliner on the lid, and as close to the lash line as possible. Then gently blend it out for a diffused effect. Check out Glo Skin Beauty’s Shadow Palette in Mixed Metals which can be used to create a smoky eye, using its variety of matte and metallic shades.

‘90s Vibes: Monochromatic nudes are making a comeback in a big way this fall. To achieve this look, use a nude lipstick, matched with a mix of rose gold, pink, and cranberry colors from the Laura Geller Uptown Chic Eye Shadow Palette to sculpt and shape the eye.

Scarlet Lip: Another great look for fall is a deep burgundy lip. This super-rich, feminine look is perfect for the season. Create this look with Grande Cosmetic’s GrandeLips Plumping Liquid Lipstick in Rebel Raisin. Rub the color on with fingers for a stained, soft effect, or directly with the applicator for a more dramatic finish.

Want to share your makeup tips with American Spa? Let us know via Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

Beware of Hormonal Acne

The skin is the shield of a human body which takes all the dust, pollution and also the microbial attacks. The white blood cells are the fighting agents which work with the association of the skin cells to keep the bacteria’s secluded. During the times of hormonal changes the equation of the body changes and creates imbalance which leads to different sort of diseases and infections to overpower the white blood corpuscles. Mostly, due to dust, pollution and over production of sebum creates the acne by blocking the skin pores. An acne should to be treated at the earliest as prolonged acne elevates to cystic acne and it’s really painful and stressful.
 

Acne

The skin pores in our body carry the impurities and dead skin cells and tissues to the surface of the body through sweat. During the hormonal changes the sebum production spikes up and so is the skin cell production. The excessive sebum clogs the skin pores and the dust and anaerobic bacteria’s gets trapped inside too. The bacteria’s spread the infection and rip the skin cells and tissues and develops the pus inside the pores. An acne can be identified by locating a bump on the skin with the redness surrounding it. The skin surrounding the pores also turns inactive and the skin inflammation spreads to the surrounding surface on the skin. The acne can be seen over the lower portion of the face, the portion of the back, over the shoulders, arms and collar area.
 

Hormonal Acne

This type of acne is caused during the changes in the hormones in a body. This type of acne has mainly noticed in the people ageing between 13 to 35 years. The promotion in a bodily form, from a child to an adolescent teenager experience lots of hormonal changes, which is the major reason of hormonal acne to appear. During this period the sebum starts to form in huge amount and clogs the pores and the confined bacteria’s starts the process of infection. During the menstrual cycle and at the time of pregnancy one experience the same hormonal acne due to the changes in the equation of the body.

Sometimes, the climate plays a major role in the emergence of an acne over the skin surface. The sebum creates the comedones in the form of white heads and the black heads. The cysts and pustules are as similar to an acne. There are several self-care measures which can subsidize the emergence and it also works in the eradication medication process of an acne.
 

Treatment for Hormonal Acne

There are several measures available for the hormonal acne treatment, the medicines are available in the form of oral as well as an ointment or gels, bars, lotion, creams and many more forms. The use of Benzoyl Peroxide is one of the best and highly recommended by the dermatologists worldwide. The medicine works by targeting the root cause which is the formation and the multiplication of the bacteria’s, by killing them and restructuring the ruptured tissues and cells. The medicine pacifies the bump over the skin and discharge the inactive skin cells and strengthen the white corpuscles to shield the skin pores. The Benzoyl Peroxide pushes the infectious pus out of the pores and creates a protection so that the skin tissues wouldn’t be infected. The medicine is prescribed till the time the scars should go off the skin and the smooth skin is reacquainted. Some measures in the dietary menu can also help the hormonal acne to vanish quickly like, high glycemic foods, simple carbohydrates, which elevates the level of insulin and creates an imbalance in the hormones. Try to refrain the consumption of alcohol, which promotes dehydration and impairs liver. One can take lean proteins which keep the insulin level stable and give amino acid which is imperative for the liver functionality. This process stipulates the hormones under control and obstruct the accumulation of toxins.

The acne is the creator of distress and promotes the lack of confidence. It should be cured as soon as it appears without disturbing or picking the acne. The more disbursed the acne is the more painful would be the cysts and the longer will be the medication process. The proper use of medication and the self-care tips will keep the person free from the effects and spots of acne.

6 Things to Know About Eyelash Extensions

Eyelash extensions are part of one of the hottest female trends in past couple of years. You’ve seen them on your favorite Instagram models, on the hottest celebrities from the Kardashian sisters and the likes of Rihanna and Beyoncé. After seeing the thick, full lashes that grace the covers of fashion magazines, you’ll want something like that for yourself too. But getting that isn’t as easy as buying high-quality lash extensions from the store. If you’ve never worn eyelash extension, there’s a lot you may want to consider before getting eyelash extensions.

One Two Lash: A Girl’s Best Friend

Eyelash extensions are a great way to glam up your look and your style. The best part, nobody knows they’re fake. However, all false lashes aren’t made equal. If you’re looking for an eyelash extension that’ll give you your money’s worth, then One Two Lash is just what you need.

One Two Lash eliminates all the typical problems associated with applying, wearing, maintaining and removing conventional fake lashes. They are made using an exclusive micro-magnetic technology allowing you to put them on quickly, without any adhesives.

How to Apply One Two Lashes

On opening the box, you’ll find a top and a bottom lash (the bottom lash has a red dot on it). Remove the top lash and hold above the top lash line of your eye.

Align the corner edges of the top lash to that of your natural lashes and gently set it down.

While the top One Two Lash rests on your physical ones, take the bottom lash from the box.

Align the edge of the lower lash with your natural lash line. If aligned correctly, the micro magnets will come together, sandwiching your natural lashes between them.

You may need to blink a few times to help secure the position of your One Two Lashes.

How to Remove One Two Lashes

The removal process is even easier. All you have to do is gently slide the lashes away from each other using your index finger and thumbs, and that’s it.

Things to Note before Getting Eyelash Extensions

Different Types are Available

If this were a rule book, then rule number one would be “No two lashes are created equal.” Once upon a time, there was only one kind of fake eyelash kit. It was 100% synthetic, from the eyelash down to the added adhesive glue. Nowadays you can pick from three different eyelash extensions, there’s synthetic, mink and silk. They also come in varying lengths from 6mm to 17mm.

Diverse Range of Styles and Looks

Some ladies prefer a more natural look. If that’s what suits your tastes, then there are individual lashes you can apply to each section of your lash line to help “beef it up.” But for a bolder look, you can get full-length extensions. They attach at both corners of your eyelids and cover the entire area of your natural lashes. If you prefer something more dramatic, you can also get eyelash extensions in customized styles including winged, ultra-thick, accents, and glitter. So whatever your signature style is, there’s an eyelash extension for you.

Wearing Extensions takes Time

Eyelash extensions are not something you can just pick up last minute and put on. If you’re considering adding eyelash extensions to your look, then you better prepare at least 2hrs for you to apply the full set. Half sets, of course, take less time and are ideal for those looking for a less natural but more dramatic effect. If you want a touch-up, then you can count on you local lash salon to help you out say every two or three weeks, it’ll still take you about 2 hours of course.

It Can Be Irritating

Using the rule book analogy earlier stated, rule number 2 would go something like this “Be prepared for the irritation that follows the application process.” It’s a bit long and not particularly catchy, but the bottom line is this; no matter the type of eyelash extension you get, you’re going to get irritated by it all. Either the adhesives dripping into the delicate eye area, or your natural lashes getting pulled with the false ones. All of which is painful and can cause damage to your eyes.

Adjustments May Be Required

Getting your eyelash extension is just one-half of the journey. The other half involves regular changes that can range from the addition of lash enhancers for a bolder look or trim for a more realistic appearance.

Removing is Almost as Stressful

The removal process can also be as stressful, and if not done carefully, you can do damage to your natural eyelashes. The entire process may take up to 30 minutes, and if you’re not sure of what to do, it’ll be easier just to see a lash specialist and learn the proper removal techniques.

One Two Lash: The Magnetic Lash Invasion

Most women are determined to give false eyelashes a try at least once in their lives, and we usually seem to think this is a brilliant idea right before a big, important event. Your favorite beauty mag told you it was effortless, and let’s face it, false lashes make everyone look amazing.

Next thing you know, you’re running 30 minutes late for the party, you’ve glued all of your natural eyelashes together and you instead have a pair of “falsies” glued to your thumb. Where did it all go wrong? And how are mere mortals even capable of mastering false lashes?

Thankfully, one woman had an epiphany in the shower. That woman was Katy Stoka.

One Two Lash

Former real-estate developer Katy Stoka was one of the approximate 99% of females that find applying false eyelashes ridiculously hard and time consuming. But she loved having great lashes. Then one day, she imagined a pretty revolutionary idea. What if false lashes could harness the power of magnets? There would be no need for messy glues and it would make the process simple enough for anyone to do – no superhuman beauty skills necessary. Within seconds, anyone could have long, thick, stunning lashes.

In 2014, One Two Cosmetics was born with a clear mission statement: “effortless beauty,” and a product that no one had seen before, One Two Lash. Katy had not only designed the world’s first, and only, magnetic lashes, but she had also invented the incredible micro-magnetic technology behind them.

How Does One Two Lash Work?

One Two Lash is the perfect name for these wonder lashes as they are truly as simple as one, two, and done. You’ll find that each One Two Lash is actually two magnetic lash strips.

  1. First, hold the top One Two Lash (the one without the red dot) over your natural lashes. Line it up so the outside edge is in line with the edge of your own natural lash line.
  2. Leave the top lash where it is, and pick up the bottom lash (with the red dot). Place the bottom lash under your natural lashes, and in line with the top One Two Lash. When the magnet is aligned they will click together, sandwiching your natural lash between them.

Easy! You’re ready to go.

When it comes time to remove them, simply take your index finger and thumb and gently slide the two magnets away from each other. Though simple, do this slowly and carefully, as you will want to keep the shape and look of your One Two Lash product intact.

Like anything, practice makes perfect, so the more you use One Two Lash, the faster and more efficient you’ll become. You can also choose between One Two Lash’s Original, Bold, or Accent style of lashes.

One Two Lashes are reusable

If effortless application with no sticky glue seemed like an unmatchable feature of One Two Lash, here’s another. They’re completely reusable! That means that if you keep them in good condition, you’ve got an endless supply of lashes.

In contrast, the application of glue on even the best false lashes makes it nearly impossible to reuse them, and the only long term option is eyelash extensions – which can cost several hundred dollars. You’ll also need to have these lashes refilled every 2-3 weeks.

If you break it down, One Two Lash becomes basically free once you continue to reuse them.

What People Are Saying

The beauty world has been blown away by the magic of One Two Lash. Allure crowned One Two Lash a Best of Beauty 2016 Winner with a Breakthrough Innovative Beauty Product award. Teen Vogue has called them “a beauty game-changer,” and Cosmopolitan deemed One Two Lash as a case “…where money can actually buy time and happiness.” Meanwhile, Popsugar’s Assistant Editor of all things trending declared, “I’m hopelessly addicted to magnetic false lashes and never turning back.”

One Two More

Not one to rest on her laurels, Katy Stoka continues to push forward, continuing to use technology for effortless beauty. Coming soon you can expect One Two Eye, One Two Skin and One Two Lip to join the One Two Cosmetics team.

Katy is also passionate about giving back more than women’s beauty sanity. Through her One Two Give initiative, One Two Cosmetics donates 1.2 percent of all revenues to benefit community-based organizations.

Can Probiotics Help With Digestive Problems?

Probiotics have become incredibly popular in the last few years as people realize the benefits they can provide. One of the most well researched benefits of these products involves the digestive system – namely diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and constipation. Here’s some information on how probiotics can help with these problems.

 

Diarrhea

There are a lot of different types of diarrhea, and this problem can strike anyone at any time. While there are several causes, one of the most common is the use of antibiotics. These drugs not only kill harmful bacteria that cause a wide range of diseases, they also kill beneficial bacteria in the intestinal tract. Among the more common complications of antibiotic use are cramping, gas, and, yes, diarrhea. Probiotics are designed to replenish the supply of good bacteria so that they can perform their main function, which is to keep bad bacteria from thriving in the gut.

Probiotics have been proven to help reduce the symptoms resulting from antibiotic-associated diarrhea. The Lactobacillus strain of beneficial bacteria is particularly effective.1

Another common form of diarrhea is known as “Montezuma’s revenge,” or traveler’s diarrhea. It typically strikes people who go to another country and get sick after eating a local dish or drinking the local water. While research is somewhat mixed when it comes to how effective probiotics are at limiting the symptoms of traveler’s diarrhea, there are studies that indicate Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidum may help.2

In some instances, diarrhea can be so severe that it could actually be fatal. An extremely harmful bacterium known as C. difficile is typically to blame. Studies indicate that Lactobacillus bacteria can keep C. difficile from being able to enter the gastrointestinal tract and doing damage.3

But just because probiotics can help fight diarrhea, that doesn’t mean you can just pop a capsule and assume you’ll be automatically protected from complications. You still have to take the right precautions, such as drinking plenty of fluids to make sure you don’t become dehydrated due to a diarrhea attack.

 

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

IBS is a particularly nasty digestive issue that can make you have to rush to the bathroom – usually at the most embarrassing times, such as when you’re in a business meeting or having a meal with friends or family members. IBS not only leads to diarrhea, but also severe abdominal pain and bloating. These are a few of the beneficial bacteria that may help reduce symptoms.

 

  • Lactobacillus plantarum L. plantarum has been extensively researched specifically for its potential effect on IBS. In one study, over 200 patients suffering from IBS were divided into two groups. One group received L. plantarum for a month, while the other half received a placebo. The treatment group reported substantial reductions in bloating and abdominal pain, as well as frequency of bowel movements.4
  • Bifidobacterium bifidum – Italian researchers studied 120 IBS sufferers who participated in a month-long trial. Again, half of them received a probiotic supplement (in this case, B. bifidum) while the other half received a placebo. Nearly 60 percent of patients in the treatment group reported improvement of several symptoms, including feelings of urgency in having to go to the bathroom. A little more than 20 percent of those in the placebo group reported improvements.5
  • Bifidobacterium infantis – An Irish study focused on the effect that B. infantis may have on women suffering from IBS. Researchers gave different doses of the prebiotic to 362 study participants. Results varied, but doses containing 100,000,000 colony-forming units (CFUs) of B. infantis resulted in a substantial reduction in symptoms.6

 

Constipation

This is one of the most frustrating digestive problems, and it is very common. More than one in 10 adults in the U.S. alone experience this issue each year, and Americans spend about $750 million trying to treat it.7

British researchers set about studying whether or not probiotics can be effective in relieving the symptoms of constipation. They looked at 14 studies that involved clinical trials on people suffering from the condition that included probiotic supplements and placebos.8

The researchers found that probiotics not only helped increase the number of bowel movements, but also helped to soften stools so that they more easily passed through the intestines. It appeared, according to the results, that supplements containing Bifidobacterium bacteria were most effective.9

 

Taking Probiotics for Digestive Issues

It’s important to note that no one has definitively stated that probiotics can be used to treat any sort of digestive issue. The evidence only shows that they may be able to help with certain problems.

If you are thinking of taking probiotics, you need to speak with your doctor first. This is especially the case if you have any type of serious intestinal disease or an illness that has resulted in a compromised immune system. There have been some instances where people have experienced complications. However, if you are in generally good health, probiotics are considered to be safe. Probiotic use can sometimes result in minor side effects, such as a bit of gas or bloating.

Probiotics come in several forms of supplements, including drinks, powders, capsules, and chewable products. They are also found in several types of foods, such as sourdough bread, yogurt, sauerkraut, and others. If you choose to purchase a supplement, you need to make sure that the labeling says something to the effect of “viable until expiration date,” because that means the chances are good that the bacteria contained in each dose will be alive when you take it.

If, on the other hand, the label says, “viable at time of manufacture,” there’s no guarantee the microbes will be active. If they’re not, then you’ll only be wasting money because the bacteria will not be alive. Do a little research before you make your purchase, and the chances are good that you’ll be getting your money’s worth.

 

Sources:

1http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.904.1374&rep=rep1&type=pdf

2http://www.travelmedicinejournal.com/article/S1477-8939(05)00091-8/abstract

3https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23728658

4https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22912552

5http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2036.2011.04633.x/full

6https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16863564

7http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/probiotics-may-ease-constipation-201408217377

8 http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/probiotics-may-ease-constipation-201408217377

9http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2014/08/06/ajcn.114.089151.abstract