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Probiotics (Bacteria That Are Good For You)by Dave Foreman
Probiotics are the beneficial or good bacteria that inhabit the large and small intestines. Probiotic bacteria inhibit growth of harmful bacteria, promote good digestion, boost immune function, and increase resistance to infection. Research on probiotics proves they also improve respiratory and allergy-response, as well as counter negative effects of antibiotic use. Beneficial bacteria also produce vitamins and aid in absorption of nutrients. Considering that probiotics affect absorption of nutrients, it could be said that they have an impact on ALL health conditions. The following conditions are known to directly benefit from probiotics
There is a term, dysbiosis, which refers to an imbalance of good and bad bacteria in the intestinal tract. Dysbiosis can occur for any of the following reasons:
For these reasons and more I recommend everyone, for their overall health and wellness, use a probiotic supplement -- whether they are ninety-years or 9-months old. I think it should even be part of the Dietary Supplement Pyramid (I just haven't figured out where to place it). Most probiotic products are made up of multiple species of Lactobacilli or Bifidobacteria. Some of the Lactobacilli species are resident (live naturally in the digestive tract) and others are transient (pass through the digestive tract). Both resident and transient species are beneficial. Use a product that contains multiple resident strains (L. acidophilus, B. bifidum, B. longum or others), as well as specific, well-tested transient strains (L. casei, S. Lactis, S. thermophilus or others).
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A PROBIOTIC
Probiotics are succeptible to the same harmful effects as any other form of bacteria, such as stomach acid, heat, and moisture, etc.. Recently on my radio program (available on Sirius Satellite channel 114) I discussed Lime disease. Since then I have been flooded with questions about probiotics in foods like yogurt vs. the ones found in supplements. Fact is, I don't think you can get a truly medicinal health benefit from the probiotics found in your everyday diet. I also don't think the products in powders or most capsules will give you the desired effects.With the advent of newer technologies to help these beneficial bacteria remain healthy and stable at room temperature and deliver them to the small intestine (bypassing the acid of the stomach) there is no need to even try and get your probiotics from foods. My favorite new technology is BIO-tract®. BIO-tract® incorporates a patented technology called LiveBac®, which uses extended shelf-Life processing. This maximizes the survival-rate, delivering more beneficial bacteria to the small and large intestines. In my opinion this technology is better than enteric coatings and other technologies currently available.An example of this technology is found in Renew Life's Flora Smart.
Another technology that promotes shelf-stability and stomach-acid-avoidance is used by Pearls. This technology is a close second to BIO-tract®. Examples are found in Enzymatic Therapy's Acidophilus Pearls and Nature's Way's Primadophilus® Reuteri Pearls.
The amount of probiotics one needs varies depending on the many reasons listed earlier. I recommend at least two billion colony forming units (CFUs) per day. If you use one of the shelfstable products, you'll be assured of getting the right amount delivered intact to the small and large intestines.