The use of probiotics has become increasingly popular in recent years, with more and more people taking them to help improve their overall health. While there is some evidence that they can help treat certain digestive disorders, many people are also interested in the potential effect of probiotics on birth control.

It is widely known that certain medications, such as antibiotics, can reduce the effectiveness of birth control pills. So it is logical to wonder if the same is true for probiotics. This article will discuss what is known about the possible interaction between probiotics and birth control and whether women should be concerned about taking them while on a contraceptive regimen.

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are living organisms found in many fermented products, such as yogurt, sauerkraut and kefir. These microscopic organisms are believed to promote digestive health, boost the immune system and possibly protect against infectious diseases. But do probiotics interfere with birth control?

The answer to this question depends on the types of probiotics being consumed, as well as the type of hormone-based birth control used. Probiotics can alter the absorption rate of certain hormones, including estrogen and progestin, which may make birth control less effective. It is best to talk to your doctor before you take a probiotic if you are using a hormone-based form of contraception.

In general, evidence suggests that healthy individuals who choose to take dietary supplements containing probiotics could benefit from doing so without fear that it will interfere with their contraception method considerably. However, further research needs be conducted in order to understand more about this potential interference between probiotics and contraceptive methods.

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How Do Probiotics Affect Birth Control?

Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts found in food, such as yogurt, that are responsible for maintaining the balance of healthy flora in the gut. While there is no definitive answer as to how taking probiotics may affect the effectiveness of birth control pills, it is believed that probiotics may reduce the body’s ability to absorb some contraceptive hormones.

When taking probiotics, which are known to alter gut bacteria and hormone levels, it is important for women to take extra precautions when using the pill as a form of birth control. This includes:

  • avoiding missing pill days
  • speaking with a healthcare provider prior to taking any new supplements or medications
  • using an additional form of contraception while taking probiotics

Additionally, women should be aware that if they have recently started or stopped using any form of antibiotic medication or switched brands of contraceptives in combination with a new regimen involving probiotic supplementations (particularly within two weeks), there could be an increase in hormonal fluctuations due to enzyme interactions which could impact the effectiveness of their birth control.

For those who want added protection when following a course of antibiotics or starting/stopping usage of birth control prescriptions should consider additional methods such as condoms or cervical caps for precautionary back up protection during this time period. It is recommended that individuals always speak with their health care provider before making any major changes concerning medications and supplements.

Potential Interactions

Recent studies suggest that probiotics, like those found in certain dietary supplements, can potentially interact with several medications, including birth control. Some studies indicate that probiotics may reduce levels of hormones found in certain types of birth control, thereby diminishing the effectiveness of the contraception.

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In this section, we will explore the possible interactions between probiotics and birth control to better understand the potential risks.

Effect of Antibiotics on Birth Control

In general, it is believed that taking antibiotics while also taking birth control can affect the effectiveness of the birth control. In most cases, antibiotics are not thought to directly interact with the hormones in birth control pills; however, some antibiotics can reduce the body’s ability to absorb and use these hormones effectively. Reduced hormone absorption and efficacy may result in an increased risk of pregnancy if using hormonal forms of contraception, such as combination birth control pills.

Generally, research suggests that low-dose estrogen combination pills remain effective even when combined with common antibiotics such as penicillin or amoxicillin. Antibiotics such as tetracycline and rifampin have been shown to have a more significant interaction with oral contraceptives, reducing their effectiveness on up to 13 percent of pill cycles in which they are taken together.

It is important to note that there have been very few scientific studies examining the potential interactions between probiotics and oral contraceptives, so no direct conclusions can be drawn at this time. Nevertheless, it is possible that some probiotic strains may interact with certain types of hormonal contraceptives due to their capacity for producing compounds similar to natural hormones or influencing hormones in other ways. Therefore, it may be wise for individuals taking internal probiotics (in foods or supplements) while using hormonal forms of contraception to use additional back-up protection (such as condoms) during treatment until more information is available on potential interactions between these two agents.

Effect of Probiotics on Antibiotics

When taking probiotics, it’s important to understand how they interact with other medications, particularly antibiotics. Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that may help with digestion and maintaining a healthy gut microbiome. Antibiotics also kill off the smaller amounts of healthy bacteria in the gut, which can alter the microbiome in an unbalanced way.

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Research has shown that there may be potential interactions between certain strains of probiotics and certain classes of antibiotics. Strains found in the Lactobacillus family have been associated with decreased absorption of antibiotics and delayed antibiotic degradation in animals. Additional studies have demonstrated similar interactions between Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain GG (LGG) and antibiotics such as tetracyclines, cephalosporins, levofloxacin and amoxicillin-clavulanic acid combinations.

It is therefore recommended to take probiotic supplements at least 2 hours before or after your antibiotic regimen to avoid any potential interference with bacterial levels in your digestive system.

Although evidence suggests there may be some interaction between probiotic supplements and antibiotics, it’s important to note that this is highly strain-specific. Talk to your doctor before taking any supplement while on an antibiotic regimen to better understand the risks or possible drug interactions associated with your specific medication plan.


At this time, there is not enough evidence to make a definite conclusion about the effect of probiotics on birth control. However, based on the available evidence, it is unlikely that taking probiotics will interfere with the effectiveness of hormonal birth control methods or reduce its level of protection.

Although further research is needed to fully understand how probiotics may affect hormone levels, it is important to note that probiotics are generally safe and are thought to have numerous health benefits. Therefore, if you are considering taking a probiotic while using hormonal birth control, it is recommended that you:

  • Discuss this with your healthcare provider in order to be informed about any potential risks or interactions.

By Reiki

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