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Probiotics for Food Poisoning

author image Diane Marks
Diane Marks started her writing career in 2010 and has been in health care administration for more than 30 years. She holds a registered nurse license from Citizens General Hospital School of Nursing, a Bachelor of Arts in health care education from California University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in health administration from the University of Pittsburgh.
Probiotics for Food Poisoning
Yogurt is a good source of probiotics. Photo Credit yaourts image by Ingrid from Fotolia.com

If you've been diagnosed with food poisoning, talk with your doctor about using probiotics to treat your nausea and diarrhea. Probiotics are sold in supplement form or you can obtain these healthy bacteria by eating yogurt. Probiotics are bacteria that live in your intestines that promote healthy digestion. During food poisoning, the lining of your intestines can become damaged and the amount of helpful bacteria in your colon may be reduced because of excessive diarrhea.

Food Poisoning

Food poisoning, also called food-borne illness, occurs when you consume food or drink that is contaminated with parasites, bacteria, viruses or toxins. Food can become contaminated at any point during the food manufacturing process. For example, vegetables can become contaminated during the growing and harvesting or meat can become contaminated if it's not defrosted properly. Food poisoning symptoms include vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, stomach pain and abdominal cramping. Most symptoms last for one to three days, but they can last as long as 10 days. Most cases of food poisoning are treated with a modified diet and rest.

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Probiotics and Immune Health

Probiotics have been reported to produce higher levels of immunity when taken consistently, according to AskDrSears.com. The healthy bacteria stimulate the production of white cells. White blood cells help fight off infectious organisms, such as the ones that cause food poisoning. Probiotics also help maintain a balance of helpful bacteria versus harmful bacteria in the large intestine, which can help boost overall health.

Digestive Health

Taking probiotics will help heal and restore damage caused by an intestinal infection. Some people can temporarily become lactose intolerant during food poisoning. Taking probiotics can help restore the production of lactase, the enzyme needed to digest lactose. Research reported by AskDrSears.com states that eating yogurt with live and active cultures can decrease the longevity and severity of diarrhea from an intestinal infection. If your doctor prescribes an antibiotic for food poisoning, the antibiotic will kill the good and bad bacteria in your gut, causing your diarrhea to worsen. Take a probiotic supplement or eat yogurt during antibiotic treatment.


Probiotic supplements are sold in various strengths and dosing recommendations. Follow the directions on the product's label and talk with your doctor. Take probiotics and modify your diet to see the best results. Eat a diet that is primarily bland foods. Bland foods that are easy on the digestive system and can help promote normal bowel movements are white rice, bananas, plain yogurt, toast and applesauce.

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