It’s been gut science week at FiveThirtyEight, an exploration of what we know about the gut, what we put into it, and what comes out of it. Two of the articles this week focused on probiotics and psychobiotics, two types of bacteria that promise to change how healthy we feel. Probiotics are all the rage, showing up in commercials, on GNC shelves, and in fancy artisanal soft drinks at my local food coop. Psychobiotics are right behind them, a variant of probiotics that are supposed to make us feel better psychologically, rather than make our guts feel better physically.
But does the science suggest either is really having a significant effect?
On this week’s What’s The Point, I discussed just that with gut science week writers Christie Aschwanden and Katie Hobson.
One last note for What’s The Point diehards: Jody Avirgan was called for jury duty this week, so he wasn’t able to host. Hopefully he will be back next week!