GO WITH YOUR GUT: Probiotics and your immune system

Is your body feeling the weight of the world?
Is your immune system at an all-time low?
Do you feel so tired that your ‘tired’ is tired?

We have a gut feeling that your body is trying to tell you something… You could need some serious immune support. But before you reach for that generic multivitamin or effervescent, you may want to first check in with your gut. It knows a lot more about your body than you think it does, so it’s good to have a little conversation with it every now and then.

Did you know that your digestive system and your immune system are very closely connected? Keeping your gut happy is key to keeping your immune system happy. In fact, a number of common ailments and physical issues can be traced back to the gut, as this is where food breakdown and nutrient absorption happens to support many key bodily functions, including:
  • Energy production
  • Hormone regulation
  • Skin health
  • Mental health
  • Toxin and waste elimination, and more

Chances are a lot of the energy, hormone and digestive issues you may be having is linked to the state of your gut. It’s important to pause and listen to what it’s trying to tell you. If immune support starts with digestive support, then how exactly do you keep your gut happy?

The answer: probiotics.


What are probiotics and how do they work?

Not all bacteria is bad! Probiotics are live microorganisms that have excellent health benefits for the gut and body. They are friendly bacteria that support the delicate balance of bacteria (microbiome) in the digestive system and keep things working as they should. These live cultures help your gut break down foods and improve the way your immune system functions overall. In other words, you need them!

How do probiotics support the immune system?

Probiotics have been linked to immune support as they have been shown to regulate bacterial populations in the gut. Research has indicated that about 70% of our immune system is housed in the gut, and so probiotics help to create an optimal environment for our immune systems to function.
  • Probiotics help enhance cellular responses to simulated viral challenges and help modulate our immune responses
  • They have also been shown to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the gut
  • Certain probiotics have been shown to boost the production of natural antibodies in the body, like IgA-producing cells, T lymphocytes and natural killer cells
  • A recent study of 570+ children showed that the probiotic Lactobacillus GG reduced the number of respiratory infections and their severity by 17%
  • Another study indicated that the probiotic Lactobacillus crispatus has been linked to lowered risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in women by 50%

Natural sources of probiotics

There are a number of good probiotic supplements available on the shelves that are absolutely fine to take. However, if you prefer to get your probiotics from what you eat, there are many foods out there that are good sources of natural probiotics, including:
  • Buttermilk: traditionally made, not cultured - the leftover liquid from making butter
  • Kefir: a fermented probiotic milk drink
  • Kombucha: a popular fermented black or green tea drink
  • Kimchi: a fermented spicy Korean dish
  • Miso: a Japanese seasoning
  • Natto: a fermented soybean product
  • Pickles/gherkins: cucumbers fermented in salt and water
  • Sauerkraut: fermented cabbage
  • Tempeh: a fermented soybean product
  • Yoghurt: with live or active cultures added
  • Certain cheeses: Gouda, mozzarella, cheddar, cottage cheese

Montagu snacks with added probiotics

We know that it’s sometimes tricky to get kids (or grownups for that matter) to eat certain healthy foods, especially foods with more ‘interesting’ flavours. So we knew we had an opportunity to make healthy living a little easier - and tastier - for the whole family.

Introducing our special range of flavoured Mango Bites and Flavoured Peanuts and Raisins with added probiotic, BC30. BC30 Probiotics were developed specifically to be used on food products without damaging the probiotics or their health benefits. Added probiotics have often been limited to products like refrigerated yoghurt, so when BC30 was first added to our Mango Bites range, it was an exciting first for the South African food industry.

With our probiotic-enriched snack range, you’ll find it way easier to get your family to take in probiotics… because they won’t even know they’re taking them! Not only are these snacks healthy, but they come in a variety of delicious flavours.

Mango Bites range:
  • Berry Blaze
  • Coconut Butter
  • Atachar
  • Crème Brûlée

Flavoured Peanuts and Raisins range:
  • Spicy Coconut
  • Bobotie

Give your gut and your immune system a healthy boost this winter with Montagu probiotic-enriched Mango Bites and Flavoured Peanuts and Raisins. They make excellent snacks for lunchboxes, or when the family is on the go. Check out our yummy range and order your probiotic-enriched snacks today!

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