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Probiotics For Bacterial Vaginosis: Time For More Detail

If the only probiotics for bacterial vaginosis (BV) you are taking are acidophilus pills and/or big brand yogurts, you are missing out on most of the benefits probiotics can give you to cure BV.

Different probiotic species confer different health advantages within the human body. In other words, not all probiotics are the same. While Lactobacillus acidophilus, often abbreviated on ingredient labels as L. acidophilus, is excellent at promoting good digestive health, it does not bestow a direct benefit to vaginal health. Indirectly, Lactobacillus acidophilus could potentially help a woman absorb nutrients like omega-3, folic acid, vitamin C, and vitamin E better and this could help her boost her immune system and encourage the growth friendly bacteria in her vagina. However, there are other probiotics that would more directly aid her in maintaining a healthy vaginal flora and retarding the establishment and growth of bacteria that cause bacterial vaginosis. The two that have been most studied are L. reuteri and L. rhamnosus, although there are many other Lactobacillus species that make up a healthy vaginal flora too.

Unfortunately, big name yogurt brands, like Dannon and Yoplait, only contain a few species of Lactobacillus and these are probiotics that are most beneficial to digestive health. You will notice on these big brand yogurts that the ingredient label says something like, “…with active yogurt cultures including L. acidophilus.”

Lessor known yogurts, usually made on a more regional or local scale, may contain a much wider range of probiotics, including some that are more directly beneficial for vaginal health. For example, there are yogurts that list Lactobacillus GG and Lactobacillus GR-1. Sometimes they will be listed simply as GG and GR-1. These are specific strains of Lactobacillus rhamnosus and both are directly beneficial to vaginal health. Sometimes they may be written like L. rhamnosus GG and L. rhamnosus GR-1 or Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG and Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1.

You can also get a more wider variety of probiotics that are directly beneficial to vaginal health by drinking raw milk and eating cheeses made with raw milk. By doing so, you get a very wide range of Lactobacillus species and different strains of each. You can broaden this even more by selecting raw milk cheeses that are made with raw milk from different sources.
Finally, to get an even broader range of probiotics for bacterial vaginosis, you can shop for fermented bean products and fermented vegetable products. While it is getting easier to find these at natural grocery stores, you will have even greater success shopping at international food markets.

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