Probiotics Supplements Side Effects – 5 Harmful Effects For Health

Probiotics Supplements Side Effects – 5 Harmful Effects For Health


Probiotics Supplements Side Effects – Probiotics are live bacteria and yeast that provide health benefits when consumed in large amounts.

They can be taken as supplements or consumed naturally through fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, and kombucha.

The health benefits of probiotic foods and supplements have been well documented, including a lower risk of infection, better digestion, and even a lower risk for some chronic diseases.

Although there are many health benefits associated with the use of probiotics, there are also side effects. Most are minor and only affect a small percentage of the population.

However, some people with serious illnesses or compromised immune systems may experience more serious complications.

This article looks at the most common probiotics supplements side effects and how to reduce them.

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1. They can cause unpleasant digestive symptoms

Although most people do not experience any side effects, the most common reaction to bacteria-based probiotic supplements is a temporary increase in gas and bloating. Those taking yeast-based probiotics can experience constipation and increased thirst.

It is not known exactly why some people experience these side effects, but they usually go away after a few weeks of continued use.

To reduce the possibility of side effects, start with a low dose of probiotics and slowly build up to the full dose over several weeks. This can help your body adjust to it.

If gas, bloating, or any other side effects persist for more than a few weeks, stop taking probiotics and seek the advice of a medical professional.


Some people experience increased gas, bloating, constipation, or thirst when they start taking probiotics. These side effects will go away within a few weeks.

2. Amines In Probiotic Foods Can Trigger Headaches

Some probiotic-rich foods, such as yogurt, sauerkraut, and kimchi, contain biogenic amines. Biogenic amines are substances formed when protein-containing foods are aged or fermented by bacteria.

The most common amines found in probiotic-rich foods include histamine, tyramine, tryptamine, and phenylethylamine.

Amines can stimulate the central nervous system, increase or decrease blood flow, and can trigger headaches in people who are sensitive to the substance.

One study found that a low-histamine diet reduced headaches in 75% of participants. However, a review of 10 controlled studies found no significant effect of dietary amines on headaches.

More research is needed to determine whether amines can be a direct trigger of headaches or migraines in some people.

Keeping a food diary of any headache symptoms you may be experiencing can help clarify whether fermented foods are problematic for you.

If probiotic-rich foods trigger your symptoms, a probiotic supplement may be a better option.


Fermented foods rich in probiotics naturally contain amines. Some people may experience headaches after eating these foods and should opt for a probiotic supplement.

3. Some Strains May Increase Histamine Levels

Some strains of bacteria used in probiotic supplements can produce histamine in the human digestive tract. Histamine is a molecule that your immune system normally produces when it detects a threat.

When histamine levels rise, blood vessels dilate to bring more blood to the affected area. Blood vessels also become more permeable so that immune cells can easily enter related tissues to fight any pathogen.

This process causes redness and swelling in the affected area and can also trigger allergy symptoms such as itching, watery eyes, runny nose, or difficulty breathing.

Normally, histamine produced in the digestive tract is naturally broken down by an enzyme called diamine oxidase (DAO). This enzyme prevents histamine levels from rising enough to cause symptoms.

However, some people with histamine intolerance have trouble properly breaking down histamine in the body because they don’t produce enough DAO.

The excess histamine is then absorbed through the lining of the gastrointestinal tract and enters the bloodstream, causing symptoms similar to an allergic reaction. People with histamine intolerance should avoid foods that contain excess histamine.

In theory, they might want to choose a probiotic supplement that is free of histamine-producing bacteria, but there is currently no research in this area.

Some probiotic strains that produce histamine include Lactobacillus buchneri, Lactobacillus helveticus, Lactobacillus hilgardii, and Streptococcus thermophilus.


Some probiotics can produce histamine in the gastrointestinal tract. People with histamine intolerance should avoid this strain of bacteria.

4. Some Ingredients May Cause Adverse Reactions

People with allergies or intolerances should carefully read the labels of probiotic supplements, as they may contain ingredients they may react to. For example, some supplements contain allergens such as dairy, eggs, or soy.

People with allergies should avoid these ingredients as they can cause allergic reactions. If necessary, read the label carefully to avoid these ingredients.

Similarly, people allergic to yeast should not take yeast-based probiotics. Instead, bacteria-based probiotics should be used. Milk sugar or lactose is also used in many probiotic supplements.

While studies show that most people with lactose intolerance can tolerate up to 400 mg of lactose in medications or supplements, there have been reports of side effects from probiotics.

Because a small number of people with lactose intolerance may experience unpleasant gas and bloating when taking probiotics that contain lactose, they may want to choose a lactose-free product.

In addition to powerful probiotics, some supplements also contain prebiotics. This is a plant fiber that cannot be digested by humans, but a bacterium that can be eaten as food. The most common types are lactulose, inulin, and various oligosaccharides.

When a supplement contains both probiotic microorganisms and prebiotic fibers, it is called synbiotic.

Some people experience gas and bloating when taking synbiotics. Those experiencing these side effects may want to choose a supplement without prebiotics.


Probiotic supplements may contain allergens, lactose or prebiotic fiber, which can cause adverse reactions in some people. These ingredients can be avoided by reading the label.

5. They May Increase Risk Of Infection For Some People

Probiotics are safe for most people, but not everyone. In rare cases, bacteria or yeast found in probiotics can enter the bloodstream and cause infections in susceptible people.

People at higher risk of exposure to probiotics include people with weakened immune systems, prolonged hospital stays, intravenous catheters, or those who have had recent surgery.

However, the risk of infection is very low, and no serious infections have been reported in clinical studies in the general population.

It is estimated that only one in a million people who take probiotics containing Lactobacilli bacteria will develop an infection. The risk is lower for yeast-based probiotics, with only one in 5.6 million users infected.

When infections do occur, they usually respond well to traditional antibiotics or antifungals. However, in rare cases, death has occurred.

Research also suggests that people with severe acute pancreatitis should not take probiotics, as they may increase the risk of death.


People with a weakened immune system, venous catheters, recent surgery, acute pancreatitis, or a long stay in the hospital should avoid the use of probiotics.

The Conclusion

Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide health benefits when consumed in large quantities. They can be taken as supplements, but they are also found naturally in fermented foods.

Probiotics are safe for most people, but side effects can occur. The most common side effects are a temporary increase in gas production, bloating, constipation and thirst.

Some people may also react badly to ingredients used in probiotic supplements or to natural amines in probiotic products. If this happens, stop using probiotics.

Rarely, people with a weakened immune system, a long hospital stay, or recent surgery may develop a probiotic bacterial infection. People with these conditions should weigh the risks and benefits before taking probiotics.

Overall, probiotics are a useful addition to a dietary regimen or supplement for most people with relatively few and unlikely side effects.

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