Digestive health, probiotic constipation cure, and colon therapy
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PROBIOTICS

Beneficial bacteria that help balance the intestinal flora, boost the immune system and fight disease.
Helps treat diarrhea, constipation, IBS, vaginitis, colitis, yeast infection, low immune function, chronic candidiasis and indigestion.
Prevents and reverses infection by harmful bacteria.
Essential for optimum intestinal health and regeneration.


There are a variety of bacteria and other microorganism, known collectively as the intestinal microflora, that act to keep the digestive system running by digesting food and processing waste. These organisms exist throughout the digestive system from mouth to anus, but most of the bacteria live in intestinal tract. There are more than 400 species of intestinal flora but only a small number of them, 30 to 40, will account for 99% of the bacteria found in humans. Amazingly, the intestines can contain up to 100 trillion total bacteria at any one time weighing up to 4 pounds. Bacteria can be classified into 3 groups, good or beneficial bacteria, neutral bacteria and bad or pathogenic bacteria. Although the word "bacteria" usually has a negative association, the majority of bacteria are in fact beneficial and necessary to good health. They provide digestive help, fight against infection and help protect and regenerate the intestinal tract. Neutral microbes have neither a positive nor negative impact but pathogenic bacteria can produce harmful substances, irritate the lining of the intestines and create serious problems. The three types of bacteria are essentially competing with each other for space and nutrients and in a healthy intestinal tract a balance is achieved where the pathogenic bacteria are held in check and there are enough beneficial bacteria present to perform digestive and regenerative functions. A healthy balance of intestinal flora would include 80% or more good & neutral bacteria and 20% or less pathogenic bacteria. Serious problems can be created when factors like antibiotics, poor diet, and stress cause this balance to be disrupted.

A newborn baby has essentially no digestive bacteria but within a few hours bacteria and microbes begin to colonize in the digestive tract. Friendly bacteria are important from the moment of birth on. L. acidophilus in the vagina inoculates the newborn as he/she passes thorough the birth canal and provides protection from other bacteria as well as assisting with the baby’s digestion and production of vitamins. The bifidobacteria concentrates in breast milk and is passed onto the nursing newborn, greatly decreasing the possibility of serious infection during infancy. In this way, human beings usually start life with a relatively balanced and healthy intestinal tract.

As we age, however, lifestyle and environmental factors can greatly reduce the number of friendly bacteria allowing pathogenic bacteria to take hold and cause problems. Both friendly and pathogenic bacteria can and are affected by changes in the intestinal environment. Bacterial infections, stress, traveling, antibiotic treatment, alcohol, poor diet, aging and a number of other factors can and do disturb the delicate bacterial balance, often decreasing the number of beneficial bacteria while allowing an overgrowth in pathogenic bacteria. An overgrowth of bad bacteria such as e.coli, salmonella, Giardia, shigella or staphylococcus can create symptoms including flatulence, constipation and/or diarrhea. If the imbalance and symptoms are allowed to continue they can lead to chronic gastrointestinal inflammation and serious GI problems like IBS, ulcerative colitis and even colon cancer. Bacterial infections also pave the way for the release of toxins into the bloodstream contributing to eczema, nervous system disorders, arthritis and a variety of immune system disorders.

Beneficial Flora - Probiotics

The health promoting beneficial bacteria and supplements containing them are often referred to as “probiotics” from the Greek words “pro” or “for” and ‘biotics” meaning “life”. Probiotics are essential to proper digestive function and are beneficial and necessary to life. They support digestion by breaking foods down into their component parts for complete absorption into the body and act to crowd out pathogenic bacteria and prevent infection. Beneficial bacteria or probiotics are also required for the bacterial fermentation of dietary fiber and short-chain fatty acid production - vital for the production of new cells to regenerate the intestinal tract itself. In an imbalanced state, the intestinal walls cannot be rebuilt every 3 to 5 days as they normally would.

Since probiotics were first discovered in the mid 19th century and greatly accelerating in the last 25 years a great deal of research and numerous clinical trials have been undertaken to better understand probiotics and how they function. Recently, thanks to remarkable advances in microbiology and intestinal bacteriology, it is understood that certain bacterial strains, especially the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium genus have high mucus membrane chemical affinity and play important roles in human health. Probiotic supplements have now been widely embraced and accepted as agents that can bring significant health benefits including:

  1. Enhancement of the immune system.
  2. Antimicrobial effects inhibiting intestinal and food poisoning pathogens.
  3. Improvement of gut function by normalizing microflora balance, reducing constipation and improving intestinal mobility.
  4. Treatment of diarrhea including infantile, traveler's and antibiotic induced diarrhea.
  5. Nutraceutical effects including contributing to the reduction of serum cholesterol, management of diabetes and prevention of osteoporosis.
  6. Improved nutrition through the enhanced breakdown of vitamins, minerals and amino acids and their absorption through the intestinal walls.
  7. Cleansing of the bloodstream by making it freer of toxins.
  8. Prevention of infection by harmful bacteria.

Because of the essential nature of beneficial bacteria, the tendency to lose them as we age leaving us open to infection and disease regular and the benefits listed above probiotic supplementation is now widely recommended.

Probiotic Selection

There are many different probiotic formulations available today. Since effective probiotic supplementation is so important to intestinal health it is extremely important to carefully choose which probiotic is right for you. Here are some guidelines.

Classification
Probiotic strains are classified as either resident or transit. Resident strains are those commonly found in the human digestive tract and bacteria from supplements containing these strains are able to re-establish in the intestinal tract giving them a slight advantage. Resident strains also may be more likely to work together and be less antagonistic to other beneficial resident strains already in the intestinal tract. Transient strains pass through the system and do not re-establish themselves. Certain transient strains do have strong abilities to fight infection. For that reason multi-strain formulations with both resident and transient strains are often recommended. Resident strains include Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus salivarius, Bifidobacteria bifidum, Bifidobacteria infantis, Bifidobacteria longum, Steptococcus faecalis, Steptococcus faecium. Transient Strains include Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus bulgarius, Lactobacillus yoghurti, Lactobacillus brevis, Lactobacillus kefir, Lactobacillus delbrueckii, Lactobacillus plantarum, Streptococcus lactis, Streptococcus thermophillus.

Strains
The strains used in the formula first of all should be able to survive the stomach digestive acids and reach the intestines in sufficient quantities. Some Lactobacillus strains including the casei strain have shown to be very resistant to environmental factors. For resident strains ability to effectively compete for and strong adherence to the intestinal wall is important. For both resident and transient strains the capability of destroying significant numbers of pathogenic bacteria is essential. The Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria strains have been the most widely researched so far and are therefore found in many formulations. Most probiotic products consist of multiple species from either the Lactobacillus or Bifidobacteria family including both resident and transient strains. Since it’s often difficult to determine the specific intestinal area in most need, using a formula with multiple strains has another advantage in that it can target both the small and large intestine.

Dosage
Probiotics are usually measured in the numbers (in billions) of live organisms present in a daily dosage. To maintain healthy levels of intestinal flora, 2 or more billion live cells daily are recommended and can be taken indefinitely for maintenance purposes. To address existing imbalances 10 or more billion cultures may be needed.

Prebiotics
There is significant research that supports the use of prebiotics in promoting enhanced level of beneficial bacteria. A prebiotic is basically a food for the bacteria. It is a dietary ingredient that reaches the large intestine in an intact form and stimulates the growth and/or activity of beneficial bacteria. Selecting a formulation that contains multiple resident and transient strains with prebiotics such as Fructoologosaccharides (FOS) is desirable.

When should they be taken
While probiotics can be taken anytime there are various opinions on what is the best time. Many authorities suggest taking a probiotic two or three times a day after meals or with a large glass of water to dilute stomach acid.

Other things to look for
An expiration date on the label is helpful since many probiotic species are affected by time, heat and oxygen and its important that the live cell count at the time you use the probiotic are equal to what is stated on the package. For this reason a few manufacturers “overformulate”, that is, they include higher levels of live cells than they state using the stated levels as the minimum at time of consumption.

Click here for information on Pro-Biotics Plus™ Capsules
· Multi-strain probiotic supplement blend
· 5 resident and transient strains
· 2.4 billion live bacteria at time of use
· 5 immune system boosters
· Enzymes
· FOS

Click here for information on Pro-Biotics Plus™ Chewables
· Multi-strain probiotic supplement blend in chewable form
· 12 resident and transient strains
· 12 billion live bacteria at time of use
· 2 immune system boosters

 
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