6 reasons to add probiotic water to your workout routine
August 10, 2017
We all know the balance of good bacteria in our gut is important for our overall health, but some of us may not know that they serve a greater purpose in a workout as well.
The topic of gut health is certainly ‘so hot right now’ and while probiotics have gained huge popularity for long-term benefits such as immune health and treatment for gastrointestinal issues or inflammatory diseases, some of us may not know that they might serve a greater purpose in a workout as well.
You may have heard that probiotics are naturally present in things like yoghurt, fermented dairy shots and other bitter tasting products like kombucha or kimchi, but more recently they’ve become available in new game-changing formats, such as probiotic water.
The best thing about probiotic water such as PERKii, is that it uses a world-first ProGel technology which essentially is a coating formula to ensure probiotics are encapsulated and protected through gastric transit. PERKii is also low in calorie as it is 85% water, low in sugar and suitable for those requiring gluten-free and lactose-free diets.
Here are our top six reasons to reach for that bottle of probiotic water post-workout:
1. Reduce inflammation after intense workouts
In the event of an exercise induced muscle damage (i.e. from weight lifting, plyometric jumps or a long run), an athlete will experience a drop in their performance which can impact their training. However, a recent study demonstrates that probiotics may help reduce muscle inflammation post-exercise.
2. Increase nutrient absorption for faster recovery time
We may be eating the right foods to be healthy, but our stomach needs to do the hard work of breaking it down. Our body must complete the work of digestion and turn the foods into nutrients that can reach our cells. However, our digestive system often reduces absorption with age which may result in gastrointestinal symptoms (i.e. bloating). Having the right balance of probiotics in your intestinal system have been thought to improve digestion and increase absorption which essentially means that nutrients travel faster through the body hastening recovery and rehab. Plus, probiotic water is a great option for those with digestive issues requiring gluten-free and lactose-free diets.
3. Reduce exercise related gastro upsets
If you’re an endurance athlete or marathon runner you’ve probably heard of the term ‘runners trots’. When we exercise it causes the cells that line the intestinal wall to pull apart a little bit, allowing substances from the gastrointestinal tract to leak into the bloodstream, triggering various problems, including mid-workout bowel distress.
To make sure your "gut-busting workout" takes on a different meaning, it may be wise to pick up that bottle of probiotic water. Research suggests that probiotics can help correct this problem. Probiotics help keep gut cells together, which strengthens the intestinal wall (and keeps you out of the bathroom mid-workout).
4. Boost your immunity post-workout
Ever gone into a workout feeling slightly dusty and come out the other end with a full-blown flu? It has been thought that athletes undertaking prolonged intense workout may be more susceptible to illness from exercise-induced immunosuppression. As our body is sensitive to physiological stress after an intense workout, a probiotic water such as PERKii that contains the Lactobacillus Casei strain may be just what you need to avoid the dreaded lurgy.
Plus, the evidence is rather strong that probiotics reduce both the duration and severity of colds and the flu. In fact, the world’s largest clinical study on the immune effects of probiotics confirmed that the Lactobacillus Casei Lc431 strain in particular reduces the duration of symptoms from the common cold and flu.
5. Hydrate, hydrate, hyrdate
We all know that it is crucial to be drinking enough water as it flushes out toxins and maintains fluid balance in our body. Drinking water after exercise is particularly important because we need to replace the fluids lost from sweat. While we don’t recommend gulping two litres of probiotic water for the whole day, adding probiotic water to your list of liquids could help you reach your daily fluid quota. Plus, with only 26 calories per serve, probiotic water such as PERKii is a much wiser option than sugar rich (and bad bacteria loving) vitamin water or sports drinks.
6. Take your post-workout high to a new level
Think you already feel good post-workout? Well turns out a probiotic water could keep those good mood vibrations flowing even further! According to a recent study conducted in the Netherlands, probiotics may have a role in improving mood and may be useful in fighting anxiety and depression. While it is still early days to establish the role of probiotics in improving your emotional and mental outlook, it is well known that exercise can improve self-confidence which in turn can help boost in performance. So why not ride that post-workout wave and finish on a high with a bottle of PERKii?
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Anika Rouf APD
Anika Rouf is an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) and a PhD Candidate. Her area of research investigates the use of social media to improve eating habits of young adults. She is passionate about healthy home cooking and working towards small sustainable behaviour changes.
We're in the process of making the PERKii website a billion times better, including amazing information about the science behind our probiotics. In the mean time, we have this great pdf that will satisfy even the biggest science geek.