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Research suggests probiotics may be useful for treating conditions ranging from diarrhea to urinary tract infections. Here are the most-studied uses of specific bacterial helpers:

Lactobacillus reuteri and L. rhamnosus: When combined, these bacteria can reduce bacterial vaginosis and prevent urinary tract infections.

Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG or Saccharomyces boulardii: These probiotics restore healthy bacteria to the intestines after a course of antibiotic treatment. When taken with Bifidobacteria strains, they can combat the development of atopic dermatitis and eczema, primarily in infants.

Bifidobacteria: Strains of these bacteria can help with irritable bowel syndrome, and researchers are now studying how they can help treat inflammatory bowel disease.