A new review of medical literature has suggested that probiotics -- foods or supplements containing microbes thought to exert a positive influence on our gut -- could help ease depression.
"So while this systematic review of the research literature supports the notion that pre and probiotics may be helpful for people with anxiety and depression, more research is needed.
The researchers from the University of Brighton and Croydon University Hospital in the United Kingdom looked at 71 studies published between 2003 and 2019 that looked at how probiotics, and prebiotics, compounds that help probiotics flourish, may help adults with depression and/or anxiety disorders.
"Although these published studies claim to show some benefits of probiotics on depression, we have no idea whether there were other studies which showed no effect which were not published," he told the SMC.
The studies in the review looked at 12 probiotic strains, primarily Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei and Bifidobacterium bifidum.