Trust your gut? Definitely. Research shows that your gut and all its good-for-you microbes (bacteria, fungi, etc.) play an essential role in your overall health, from digestion and metabolism to your central nervous system and brain function. That’s why nourishing it with the highest quality probiotics is key to a healthier, more vibrant you.
More good-for-you bacterial flora means less infections
Bacteria and yeast may get a bad rap, but both are critical (and beneficial!) to vaginal health. The two work in tandem to protect your reproductive system against potentially harmful pathogens and keep a healthy pH. When that intimate ecosystem gets out of whack, infections can arise (think candidal vulvovaginitis, a.k.a. yeast infections). In a nutshell, equilibrium is everything.
Lactobacillus bacteria in particular is key to achieving balance in the vaginal microbiome1. Routine combines Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001 and Lactobacillus acidophilus LA-14, two thoroughly studied probiotic strains that have been clinically proven to help maintain healthy vaginal pH, increase beneficial vaginal flora, and improve frustrating symptoms like itching and discharge2.
The research is robust. One clinical trial that tested the strains against four common pathogens found that L. rhamnosus HN001 and L. acidophilus LA-14 create a barrier against infection and actually inhibit the growth of specific pathogens responsible for both bacterial vaginosis (Gardenerella vaginalis and Atopobium vaginae) and aerobic vaginitis (Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli) . And unlike antibiotics, which can come with negative side effects and resistance in some, this strain combo offers similar results without adverse effects3.
Probiotics can help prevent future infections, too. A 2019 randomized clinical trial of women with recurring yeast infections concluded that those who took the two strains had improved symptoms and fewer recurring episodes4.
And much like your gut microbiome might need a little love after an infection or illness, the same goes for your vagina. L. rhamnosus HN001 and L. acidophilus LA-14 help with that. In a randomized controlled study, women took the two strains every day for 2 weeks and were swabbed weekly to analyze flora levels. The proof was right under the microscope—both strains encouraged the growth of new, good-for-you bacteria5.
1 Tachedjian G, Aldunate M, Bradshaw C, Cone R. The role of lactic acid production by probiotic Lactobacillus species in vaginal health. Res Microbiol. 2017;168(9-10):782-792. doi:10.1016/j.resmic.2017.04.001
2 Russo R, Edu A, De Seta F. Study on the effects of an oral lactobacilli and lactoferrin complex in women with intermediate vaginal microbiota. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2018;298(1):139-145. doi:10.1007/s00404-018-4771-z
3 Bertuccini L, Russo R, Iosi F, Superti F. Effects of Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Lactobacillus acidophilus on bacterial vaginal pathogens. Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol. 2017;30(2):163-167. doi:10.1177/0394632017697987
4 Russo R, Superti F, Karadja E, De Seta F. Randomised clinical trial in women with recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis: efficacy of probiotics and lactoferrin as maintenance treatment. Mycoses. 2019;62(4):328-335. doi:10.1111/myc.12883
5 De Alberti D, Russo R, Terruzzi F, Nobile V, Ouwehand A. Lactobacilli vaginal colonisation after oral consumption of Respecta® complex: a randomised controlled pilot study. Arch Gynecol Obstet. 2015;292(4):861-867. doi:10.1007/s00404-015-3711-4