for Constipation - Do they work?
Dr. Lorn Allison D.N., L.M.T.
Board Certified and Licensed Naprapath
Yes, probiotics for constipation do work even for chronic constipation and the evidence constinues to grow.
Probiotics for constipation are the newest thing to
hit the marketing scene for constipation in a long time.
But the fact is, that many in the natural health
care community, have known for some time that probiotics can be of
tremendous help for relief from constipation.
If you are new to this thought on probiotics then
you may have had a friend, Doctor or even a television commercial for a
yogurt company state that probiotics can be helpful for constipation.
In some cultures, consuming fermented raw yogurt,
Kefir and other fermented food products that naturally contain probiotics is part
of the regular diet. Here in the west this is not so.
These foods can be a great source of beneficial
bacteria that have been removed from the normal western diet through
for constipation, new research proves effectiveness.
So far, the research points to certain strains of bacteria as
probiotics for constipation---keep in mind that many other probiotics
have been studied and show benefit for other conditions but not
It is inevitable that other probiotic strains will
come out in the future as showing very helpful for constipation and
other digestive problems.
The research on this is just getting started but
for now, the following probiotics show the most promise for
- Lactobacillus casei rhamnosus
- Lactobacillus Casei shirota
bifidum, B. infantis, B. longum, Lactobacilli, L. casei, L. plantarum
and L. rhamnosus in combination(7)
what some of the research says so far about these probiotics strains
being used for constipation...
There is a high level of evidence for positive
effects of some probiotics in the alleviation of lactose intolerance,
antibiotic-associated intestinal disorders and gastroenteritis.(1)
The probiotic strain 'Lactobacillus casei
rhamnosus' was effective in treating children with chronic
A probiotic nursing home residents study shows it
is possible to normalize bowel movements in frail nursing home
Some recent randomized, controlled studies attest
to the efficacy of some probiotics in alleviating individual IBS
symptoms, there is evidence for efficacy of probiotics in treating
individual symptoms such as diarrhea, constipation, and bloating.(4)
A beneficial effect of a fermented milk containing
B. lactis for constipated women was shown after 1 and 2 wk of
Study results indicate a beneficial effect of
Lactobacillus casei Shirota (LcS)on gastrointestinal symptoms of
patients with chronic constipation. The administration of probiotic
foodstuffs may be recommended as an adjunctive therapy of chronic
One pilot study shows that a mixture of
probiotics, has positive effects on symptoms of constipation.(7)
There will be many more studies coming out over
the next few years about probiotics for constipation because this is a
very hot alternative health care topic.
Remember that there many different probiotic
strains and not all of them may be beneficial as probiotics for constipation.
Some of these strains have other benefits such as
prevention of certain types of infections but not as beneficial for
Regardless, probiotics are here to stay and will
become a standard supplemental product for constipation in the years to
Please check out our other pages on probiotics...
for constipation and other tips that bring relief for constipation.
Probiotics for children
Probiotics for children - the best chewable supplement
Probiotics and IBS
1. Nutritional advantages of probiotics and prebiotics.
Br J Nutr. 2002 May;87 Suppl 2:S153-7.
2. Lactobacillus casei rhamnosus Lcr35 in children
with chronic constipation.
Pediatr Int. 2007 Aug;49(4):485-90.
3. Fermented cereal with specific bifidobacteria
normalizes bowel movements in elderly nursing home residents. A
randomized, controlled trial.
J Nutr Health Aging. 2007 Jul-Aug;11(4):305-11.
4. What is the evidence for the use of probiotics
in functional disorders?
Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2008 Aug;10(4):379-84.
5. Effect of a fermented milk containing
Bifidobacterium lactis DN-173010 on Chinese constipated women.
World J Gastroenterol. 2008 Oct 28;14(40):6237-43.
6. Probiotic beverage containing Lactobacillus
casei Shirota improves gastrointestinal symptoms in patients with
Can J Gastroenterol. 2003 Nov;17(11):655-9.
7. The role of a probiotics mixture in the treatment of childhood
constipation: a pilot study.Nutr J. 2007 Aug 4;6:17.
health varies greatly, and although research and scientific data can be
very promising, we believe you must always consult your physician
before changing, adopting or adding anything with respect to lifestyle
or diet that may affect your health.