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Great news! It’s possible to improve your digestive system health today by adding prebiotics to your elderly care routine.

The elderly are common sufferers of digestive disorders and related problems. Up to 20 percent of the 13 million people in the United Kingdom who suffer from digestive ailments are aged above 60.

The elderly are most prone to diseases of digestive tract because their immune systems tend to be weaker and their bodies seem to absorb less nutrients from food. Between a diminished immune response, and the lack of nutrients, their digestive system develops ailments which can grow worse as time passes.

The most common digestive disorders for the elderly include:

• - constipation or difficulty passing stools

• - excessive gas and bloating

• - diarrhea induced by antibiotics or other strong medication

• - upset stomach and abdominal cramps

• - Indigestion

• - Colon pain and abdominal distention

• - Polyps in the intestines

While most people consider these digestive conditions as part of getting old, they are nevertheless uncomfortable to deal with. They can impair a person’s regular function and can even result in embarrassing moments for them. One veteran described his gas and bloating as “a cacophony of sounds followed by a trip to the latrine”

Other than being uncomfortable, digestive disorders can lead to other more serious diseases. Studies have shown that polyps and ulcers, if left untreated, can lead to cancerous growths in the colon. Indigestion and constipation can also impair the ability of the intestiness to absorb nutrients. Because of these consequences, some doctors now pay a closer attention to these disorders brought about by old age.

Prebiotics and their functions

Most of these conditions in the elderly can be improved by including prebiotics in their diet. Prebiotics are compounds which strengthen the health of the digestive system by promoting the growth of good bacteria.

Bacteria play an important role in the well-being in the digestive system. They help the body digest and absorb food. They also help protect the intestines from damage from bad bacteria and toxins. The absence of good bacteria and an imbalance in the chemical composition of the digestive tract has been found to be a significant factor in the recurrence of diarrhea, stomach infections and ulcers.