Microorganisms and bacteria help our bodies function. Can probiotics, or “good” bacteria, help reduce lupus symptoms?
Good bacteria may seem like an oxymoron. But, bacteria play a vital role in the human body, particularly in the intestines where they help digest folic acid and certain vitamins.
So, what are probiotics?
Probiotics are particular microorganisms that are believed to offer health benefits when eaten or taken in a supplement. This concept of ingesting living microorganisms, including bacteria, to improve health is attributed to Élie Metchnikoff in the early 1900s. Metchnikoff noticed that the Bulgarian peasants lived longer and believed it was because they ate yogurt.
Gut health is important in autoimmune conditions like lupus because a huge portion of the immune system is in your GI tract. And, common lupus medications like antibiotics are known to reduce the amount of “good” bacteria in the body.
While little is known on exactly how they interact and the particular mechanisms, a lot of research is being done on the role of bacteria in the gut.