Do Probiotics Break a Fast

Do Probiotics Break a Fast? (taken while on intermittent fasting?)

Skipping meals during an intermittent fast is very common.

This reduces the volume of nutrients your intestines can absorb, which is why you need a supplement to aid the absorption of necessary nutrients. It is thus imperative to know if probiotics can break your fast.

Taking probiotics during a fast can not break it. Most probiotics are primarily zero-calorie supplements used to relieve different gastrointestinal problems.

But there’s more to this:

Key Highlights
  • Probiotics do not break a fast as they do not contain calories or serve as the main energy source for the body.
  • Probiotics can aid gastrointestinal disorders, maintain intestinal flora, and promote bowel movement during a fast.
  • Not all probiotics are calorie-free, so it’s important to check the product’s labeling before purchasing.
  • Probiotic-containing foods, such as yogurt and kefir, contain calories and should NOT be taken during a fast.
  • Probiotics that require food may be less effective when taken during a fast, while food-independent probiotics can be taken anytime.
  • Click here for the BEST PRICE of our recommend probiotics supplement.

This article will talk about how probiotics do not break a fast, the benefits of taking probiotics when fasting, and some of the foods containing probiotics.

Can You Use Probiotics While Fasting?

Probiotics work to maintain the proper functioning of the gastrointestinal system. They do not contain calories or serve as the main energy source for the body. Therefore probiotics do not affect your fast.

Probiotics are well known to aid gastrointestinal disorders, including cramping, bloating, and constipation. Taking a probiotic can help maintain your intestinal flora of good bacteria during a fast. Even when you don’t for many hours. 

However, not all probiotics are devoid of calorie-producing content. Taking a probiotic containing some calories means breaking your fast.

In addition, some probiotics have artificial sweeteners, flavors, and other calorie-containing ingredients. These types of probiotics are unsuitable to use during a fasting period.

For a  probiotic with no calories or artificial sweetener, check out, Biotics-8 or Yourbiology Gut Formula. Both were created with zero-calorie ingredients and other substances that can break your fast.

Do All Probiotics Contain Calories?

Not all probiotics contain calories. Probiotics are bacteria that line the gut and help digestion. Not all probiotics contain calories, but some do—usually in the form of lactose (from milk products) or maltose (from barley).

Some people are lactose intolerant and cannot digest milk sugar, which can cause problems like gas, bloating, and diarrhea. If you’re lactose intolerant, look for probiotics that don’t contain lactose.

For example – Yourbiology Gut+ probiotic supplement is soy-free, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

You can also ask your doctor or pharmacist if there are any probiotics without lactose that would be a good fit for you.

A lot of standard probiotics on the market do contain caloric ingredients. This is why you should always check the product’s labeling before purchasing.

Sometimes, it may be hard to understand the ingredients on a product’s label. This can make it hard to tell which probiotics contain calories. The best way to find out is by contacting the product’s customer care and asking them.

The Biotics-8 supplement is another good alternative – I discovered recently – that is calorie-free.

Aside from being calorie-free, this product will help regulate your serotonin levels and put you in an excellent mood, even during a fast.

Can Probiotic-Containing Foods Break a Fast?

Probiotics Containing food

Probiotics are often in the form of supplements, but some foods also contain many probiotic bacteria. Taking any of these probiotic foods will break your fast.

Probiotic foods contain calories, thus making them unsuitable replacements for probiotics during fasting. Some of these foods include yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and kombucha. Yogurt is synthesized from fermented milk by the action of probiotic bacteria such as Bifidobacteria.

Other probiotic foods include tempeh, pickles, miso, sourdough bread, cheese, and kimchi. Like those above, they can’t be taken during a fast because of their calorie content.

When To Take Probiotics During Fasting?

First of all, there are different types of fasts.

Some people avoid either breakfast or dinner to kick-start their weight loss regimen, known as intermittent fasting. In such a situation, you should take your probiotic very close to when you want to have your first meal of the day.

Some probiotics require that you eat before taking them, while others do not.

Probiotics that require food will be less effective and often be wasted by the gut if taken during a fast. Such probiotics are acid-sensitive, especially when they get to the stomach. 

Stomach acid can destroy about 80% of the entire content, thus making the probiotic less effective. If you are skipping breakfast, you should take the probiotic at least half an hour before dinner. This rule also applies when skipping dinner.

Probiotics that do not require food are best recommended during a fast. They survive the acidic condition of the stomach and progress to the intestines, where they carry out their functions. Importantly, they can be taken anytime.

Can You Take Probiotics On An Empty Stomach?

Often, it is recommended that you take a probiotic with food.

However, this is subject to the manufacturer’s instructions. Some probiotics can be taken on an empty stomach. 

Food-dependent probiotics are also known as acid-sensitive probiotics. Taking any acid-sensitive probiotic on an empty stomach will make it less effective. This is because the acidic environment is unsuitable for introducing probiotic bacteria. 

Extreme conditions like those in the stomach will damage the bacteria cells and render the probiotic almost useless before it gets to the gut.

The presence of food in the stomach helps to neutralize most of the stomach’s acidity. This helps the probiotic bacteria cells survive until they reach their destination in the large intestine.

As for food-independent probiotics, they can be used anytime on an empty stomach. These probiotics have been designed to evade or protect themselves from the harmful effects of the stomach’s acidity.

Benefits of Using Probiotics During a Fast

Probiotics are medically approved supplements capable of relieving several gastrointestinal problems at once. They were produced by different strains of good bacteria that are naturally found in our gastrointestinal system. 

The combination of four or more active bacteria strains, alongside some prebiotic fibers, helps the proper growth of our intestinal bacterial community.

Probiotics have been shown to help the body during a fast in various ways, detailed below:

  • Gut clearance

During a fast, your gut is technically devoid of any fresh food.

Over a very long period, there is usually some food debris left throughout the digestive system. Taking probiotics during a fast aids proper bowel movement for clearance of the gut.

Also, fasting for long hours has a significant effect on the bacterial microbiota inside the gut. Such effects include increased clearance of bacteria cells in the gut. This is also one of the reasons why fasting is recommended.

Taking a probiotic afterward will help balance the bacterial population once again. 

  • Easier bowel movements

Prebiotic fibers are one of the constituents of a good probiotic, and they are essential to the gut. These fibers function mainly to aid the growth of the flora by releasing components necessary for bacterial cell growth. 

Aside from that, they help to facilitate proper bowel movement. This contributes to the comfortable feeling you get after using probiotics during a fast.

  • Improved mental health

When fasting, insulin takes quite a while before it starts its action.

Throughout this period, probiotics help promote serotonin levels, which are very effective for maintaining a good mood. This improves mental health during a fast, thus helping you go on for a more extended period.

  • Management of Diabetes

Diabetic patients are generally characterized by increased blood glucose levels. For such patients, a type of food fast or scheduled intermittent fast might be recommended by their doctor. This helps them maintain their glucose levels. 

Research has shown that probiotics were taken during a fast increase in the presence of an antioxidant called glutathione. Glutathione is increasingly present because of the change in metabolism caused by both fasting and the probiotics present. 

These changes in metabolism, though small, are enough to reduce the hyperglycemic condition of a diabetic patient.

  • Weight loss 

Although there is little evidence, researchers have established a possible link between probiotics and weight loss.

According to NCBI, probiotic bacteria can lead to an increase in the oxidation of long-chain fatty acids. Increased formation of short-chain fatty acids means fewer body fats.

Probiotics speed up the rate of fat oxidation, enhancing the outcome of weight-loss fasting. This is also helpful for type-2 diabetic patients as it helps shed some fat. On a brighter note, taking probiotics during a fast can help reduce the potential risk of developing obesity-related or type-2 diabetes.

Other essential benefits of probiotics when fasting include the following:

  • Reduced risk of inflammation
  • Reduced-fat 
  • Improved sleeping habits
  • Gastrointestinal comfort before or after fast

Probiotics Recommended During Fasting

As mentioned earlier, not all probiotics lack caloric ingredients. However, probiotics like Biotics-8 are recommended because of their no-calorie makeup. Another probiotics similar to Biotics-8 is the Yourbiology Gut Formula. If you want to fast, you can use either of these two.

For people taking immunosuppressants or chemotherapy, please consult your doctor before use.

For people having an allergy, it is vital to check the product’s label to see if it contains your allergenic substance before purchasing the pack.

Final Thoughts

Some people can take a probiotic supplement without breaking their fast, while others may need to wait until after they break their fast to start taking them. 

It all depends on the person’s health history, current diet and lifestyle, and probiotic supplement brand.

People who are fasting for religious reasons should speak with their religious leader before taking any kind of probiotic supplement.

On the other hand, people who are fasting for medical reasons should make sure that the supplement they are taking contains zeroes for calories, fat, and protein. And will not interact with any of the medications they are taking.

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