Probiotics - Improve Healthy Digestion, Immune System
Function, and Nutrient Absorption by Adam Alpers
organisms help restore health and balance to the intestinal tract which are
1. protect against microorganisms that could cause disease
2. to aid in the digestion and absorption of food and nutrients
Creating and maintaining a healthy balance of beneficial bacteria can best be achieved
by using probiotics. Most often, the bacteria come from two groups, Lactobacillus or
Bifidobacterium. Within each group, there are different species (for example,
Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidus), and within each species,
different strains (or varieties). A few common probiotics, such as Saccharomyces
boulardii, are yeasts, which are different from bacteria.
Healthy Bacteria Can Help Strengthen Your Overall Health
The good bacteria live, colonize, thrive, and reproduce in your gastrointestinal tract,
beginning just below the stomach, and form a complex and enormously diverse
ecosystem. These resident bacteria synthesize the B-complex vitamins, crowd out
yeast and parasites, help regulate blood cholesterol levels, and produce antibiotic
Each person's mix of bacteria varies. Interactions between a person and the
microorganisms in his body, and among the microorganisms themselves, can be
crucial to the person's health and well-being. When the bacteria in your gut are
abundant and healthy, they promote good health, prevent illness, and protect your
well-being. Their health is literally your health. Maintaining a healthy intestinal tract is
essential because your GI tract contains 80% of the cells that make immune
The Bacterial Balancing Act
This bacterial "balancing act" can be thrown off in two major ways:
1. By antibiotics, when they kill friendly bacteria in the gut along with unfriendly
2."Unfriendly" microorganisms such as disease-causing bacteria, yeasts, fungi, and
parasites can also upset the balance.
When the delicate balance of healthy bacteria in your system is compromised,
undesirable bacteria is allowed to multiply, and unfriendly organisms such as
disease-causing bacteria, yeasts, and fungi set up shop in your digestive tract. When
the ratio of good bacteria to bad is lowered, problems begin to arise such as
excessive gas, bloating, constipation, intestinal toxicity, and poor absorption of
Probiotics: Where Are You?
Probiotics can be found in some foods like yogurt, olives, kim chee, sauerkraut,
buttermilk, aged cheeses, miso, tempeh, cultured dairy products, some juices, and
soy beverages. However, the most effective way to guarantee that you increase and
maintain the amount of healthy bacteria in your system is to take a high-quality
probiotic supplement. When searching for a probiotic product, it is essential to find
one that contains enough healthy bacteria, as well as a delivery system that enables
the good bacteria to survive harsh stomach acids and reach your gut alive, intact,
Some of the most important factors to consider are:
1. Guaranteeing the supplement contains the specific probiotic strains and species
that have a known pedigree and are backed by research.
In choosing a probiotic, claims of efficacy should be made only for products that have
been tested in studies and found to be efficacious. Therefore, consumers should look
for products that list a specific strain of proven bacteria clearly on the label.
The strains that seem to be considered in the most important category include the
Key ingredients: Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium Bifidum, Bifidobacterium
longum, and Bifidobacterium lactis.
2. Ensure the probiotics can be kept alive and viable until they are delivered to the
site of action.
For a probiotics supplement to be effective, it must be delivered alive to its site of
action. Most capsules, tablets, powders, liquids, foods, and pills, even if
enteric-coated, deliver little if any viable probiotics where they can colonize.
These delivery systems are unable to keep these bacteria alive and transport them
to the site of action where they can be utilized by the intestinal tract. What this
simply means is that even if your system receives the good bacteria, it's most often
dead and in a state that isn't beneficial or usable to your system.
Ultimately,you're taking a chance by using a probiotic that can't guarantee its delivery
system. In the long run, you may not be receiving the health benefits that you're
hoping and paying for.
Every day you make choices and are exposed to environmental stressors and that
compromise and diminish these good bacteria-junk foods, caffeine, artificial
sweeteners, trans fats, pesticides, antibiotics, chlorinated drinking water, and other
toxins. These factors, along with your own lifestyle choices including inadequate
nutrition, alcohol, and stress can all wreak havoc in the gastrointestinal tract by
destroying healthy bacteria in your gut. Consider taking supplementation of a quality
product containing effective, live, pedigree proven probiotics.
As always If you are thinking about using a probiotic product, consult your health
care provider first. No therapy should be used in place of conventional medical care
or to delay seeking that care.
About The Author
Dr. Adam L. Alpers, D.O. invites you to access and gain knowledge by visiting the
medical information portal .
This portal was developed to give patients and others quick and easy access to some
of the most needed information in the hearts and minds of our patients. Almost any
medical question you may have can be answered through the portal. There are free
downloads of some medical topics for you to listen to. To learn more, check it out
Copyright - Adam L. Alpers. All Rights Reserved Worldwide
What Are Probiotics?
One widely used definition, developed
by the World Health Organization and
the Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations, is that
probiotics are "live microorganisms,
which, when administered in
adequate amounts, confer a health
benefit on the host."
Your intestinal tract contains over
100 trillion bacteria-both good and
bad. The friendly or healthy bacteria
are vital to proper development of
the immune system. These tiny
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