Can diabetics take probiotics?
No evidence exists to suggest that people with diabetes should not take probiotics.
Diabetes is an auto-immune disease that compromises the body's production of insulin. Type one diabetes (insulin-dependent diabetes) usually occurs in younger individuals, and makes up less than 15% of all cases of diabetes. Type two diabetes (insulin-resistant diabetes) is much more common, and tends to affect people over the age of 30.
Research into probiotics and their effects on patients with diabetes remains relatively sparse and there is very little research into Type 1 diabetes and probiotics, but no evidence exists to suggest that probiotics should not be taken.
Diabetics should be aware of any naturally-occurring or added sugars present in some probiotic supplements, and may need to factor this into their daily intake of carbohydrate, especially if taking multiple supplements each day. For example, fructose is sometimes present to ensure an even distribution of bacteria and prebiotic fibres.
If you are diabetic and are ever in any doubt about whether any natural food supplement is suitable for you to take, we would always advise you to speak to your doctor.
You can read more about diabetes and probiotics here:
Two new studies back probiotics for diabetes
This FAQ has been answered by Kerry Beeson, BSc (Nut.Med) Nutritional Therapist.