In terms of whether or not probiotics can help reduce stretch marks, there is some beneficial evidence to suggest that they may.
Stretch marks are the bane of many a woman’s (and man’s) life. These are seemingly unpreventable, and just nature’s way of helping us realize that life isn’t fair!
On a serious note, stretch marks are something which most people have to some degree and they are certainly nothing to be concerned about in terms of health.
A stretch mark is exactly that, a mark where the skin has stretched. This can be due to weight gain and then weight loss, and pregnancy, as two of the main reasons.
Stretch marks are also mostly seen on the backs of the arms, the backs of the legs, on the stomach, and breasts.
Some women aren’t at all bothered about stretch marks and simply view them as their ‘battle scars’, e.g. winning a battle with weight management, or going through nine months of pregnancy.
Others, however, find them to be a huge problem. And when this is the case, stretch marks can severely damage self-esteem and body image.
There are many ways you can look to reduce stretch marks, however, we are yet to come across a magic cure which makes them disappear completely.
What you might not be aware of, however, is that probiotic supplements might be a good way to help reduce the effects of these silvery marks too.
They have also shown promising results for preventing stretch marks during pregnancy.
Yes, really. Probiotics are mostly known for their gut health improvement work, but there are many other benefits to be had besides that.
According to Staci Gulbin RD from Authority Health, probiotics have been shown to be very useful in helping boost the condition of the skin, reducing the number of vaginal yeast infections and UTIs in women, boosting the immune system, and may also assist with weight loss.
The jury is still out in terms of just how beneficial probiotics are, and more studies need to be done, but what we know so far is certainly pleasing.
How Can Probiotics Help With Stretch Marks?
This all comes down to a possible boost in the amount of collagen produced within the body.
Studies have shown that taking probiotic supplements on a regular basis, or by increasing the number of natural probiotics in your diet, could help to boost the amount of collagen your body produces within the skin.
This has an anti-aging effect helping to plump up the skin, rehydrate, and basically bring back a glow, but it also helps with stretch mark appearance too.
Collagen affects the elasticity of the skin, and stretch marks are produced as a result of a lack of elasticity, e.g. the skin needed to stretch due to weight or pregnancy.
Cellulite could also be benefited. But again, more research needs to be done into this.
Put simply, the better the elasticity of your skin, the fewer stretch marks you will have. And when used in conjunction with other treatment methods, e.g. moisturizers that are created specifically for stretch marks, you might find that this routine actually works really well for you in reducing the appearance.
Will you eradicate them completely? Very unlikely, but any reduction in the appearance could be enough to satisfy your mind and make you feel better about yourself.
Of course, if your stretch marks don’t bother you in the slightest, that’s great! We should all love our bodies for the battles they have been through, and any scars or marks too.
How To Take Probiotics
Here are the steps you should take to properly increase your probiotic intake and reduce stretch marks:
1. Consult With Your Doctor
Before you decide to take any type of supplement, probiotics or otherwise, you should have a chat with your doctor to find out whether you have any contraindications.
There isn’t a huge amount of evidence into those who can and can’t take probiotics, but there isn’t a lot of evidence to suggest that they’re suitable for all either.
By having a chat with your doctor, you can side-step any potential problems.
2. Increase Probiotic Intake
After that, you need to try and identify the best way to increase your probiotic intake. You can do that via your diet, or you can do it via a supplement.
Most people go for the supplement route, probably because it’s easier, but you can do the diet route too if you want to give it a try.
The foods high in probiotic content are super-healthy in many other ways too, and most of them have antioxidant content.
By chowing down on yogurts, sauerkraut, traditional buttermilk, miso soup, kimchi, and other well-known probiotic choices, you can increase your health overall, as well as target the probiotic increase you want.
3. Take Supplements
If the supplement route is for you, you need to do some research from this point. The supplement world doesn’t have rules and regulations, and it can be difficult to figure out what is sales talk and what is genuine benefit.
Reviews are a good starting point, as this is where you’ll find out the experiences of other people, rather than the sales talk on the website selling pages!
You also need to think about the types of strains and CFU. The CFU is basically how strong the probiotic is in some ways, but if the product has more than one strain, that might be something you prefer over the CFU amount.
You’ll learn more about this as you start to do your research, and as you see the various features that products boast about.
How to take them? Again, this varies.
Some supplements are powders which you mix into smoothies and other liquid drinks, whilst some are tables and capsules.
You might also be able to find probiotic in yogurt-style drinks, usually stocked in the supermarket for ease of purchasing.
Either way, it’s about choosing a type of supplement that will fit easily into your lifestyle and within your budget too.
Remember, you’re going to be taking this supplement for a long period of time, so it needs to be cost-effective, and not be a hassle to remember to take every day.
The best advice is to shop around, but in terms of whether or not probiotics can help with stretch marks, there is some beneficial evidence to suggest that they may.