Health Plan Advises Seniors On What They Should Know Before Taking Probiotics

Probiotics are popular, but experts warn seniors to see their primary physicians first. Overall, probiotics and prebiotics are beneficial for most, but seniors with chronic illness or weakened immune systems may be at greater risk of infection or suffer problems with their digestive tracts.

Westminster, United States - April 20, 2021 /PressCable/

One leading health plan is recommending that seniors thinking of taking probiotics do their research first. Brand New Day, a Medicare Advantage prescription health plan available in 16 California counties, offers evidence from recent clinical trials conducted by the National Institutes of Health and other agencies that found that probiotics and prebiotics are often beneficial for seniors when it comes to battling malnutrition and constipation as well as boosting their immune systems. However, for those with severe illnesses or compromised immune systems, there is some risk.

“Overall, probiotics and prebiotics are beneficial for most people, but seniors with chronic illness or weakened immune systems may place themselves at greater risk of infection as well as problems with their digestive tracts,” says George Fields, M.D., Medical Director at Brand New Day, whose members are mostly seniors. “That’s why we recommend consulting with a primary physician before starting a probiotic regimen.”

Laura Davis Loschiavo, a clinical nutritionist with Brand New Day and author of Simply Healthy Eating, says that it’s important to understand how probiotics and prebiotics work.

“While probiotics are the good bacteria, prebiotics are the good bacteria promoters. They work in synergy with each other, so your gut needs both of them to keep your gastrointestinal tract healthy,” she explains. “Among the benefits of probiotics are keeping your digestive tract balanced, preventing diarrhea, keeping your heart healthy by lowering LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and blood pressure, easing the severity of allergies, reducing belly fat and even improving mental health by minimizing the symptoms of anxiety, depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder.”

Davis Loschiavo says that probiotics have an extensive history of apparently safe use, particularly in healthy people. However, few studies have looked at the safety of probiotics in detail, so there’s a lack of solid information on the frequency and severity of side effects.

“At Brand New Day, we suggest that seniors check with their primary care physicians before starting a probiotic regimen, particularly if they have a chronic illness or compromised immune system,” she says.

BACKGROUND: Brand New Day offers a number of specialty plans in addition to its standard Medicare plan. They include the Embrace Plan for members with heart disease, hypertension and/or diabetes; Bridges Plan for members with dementia and Alzheimer’s; SelectCare Plan for members residing in long-term care (nursing homes) facilities; and Harmony Plan for members with mental illness including major depression, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder and paranoid disorder.

For qualifying members, the plans cover transportation to and from medical appointments; vision, dental and hearing aids; 24-hour/day nurse and physician line; and health nurses and life coaches. In addition, members with chronic illnesses are not only treated medically, but in a variety of other ways including education about the member’s chronic or ongoing medical conditions and avoidable risks, nutrition, exercise, self-testing and monitoring, medication adherence to doctor orders, preventive care planning and linkage to community support programs.

Brand New Day offers comprehensive benefit programs designed for its members’ unique healthcare needs. In addition to its Medicare only, Medicare and Medi-Cal members, the plan offers specialized programs for those with ongoing medical conditions including Diabetes, Cardiovascular Disease, Dementia and Mental Illness. It also serves those who live in long-term care facilities. Brand New Day’s personalized approach is designed to keep its members healthy and independent and its team of caring healthcare professionals share one common goal — to improve the overall well-being of each member by offering members “healthcare you can feel good about.”

For more information about Brand New Day, visit BNDHMO.com or call (866) 255-4795.

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Contact Info:
Name: Frank Groff
Email: Send Email
Organization: Brand New Day
Address: 5455 Garden Grove Blvd, Suite 500, Westminster, CA 92683, United States
Phone: +1-562-225-9981
Website: https://BNDHMO.com

Source: PressCable

Release ID: 89006060

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