The Question and Answer Self-help guide to Probiotic Supplements!


The following is a Q & A of the very most common questions about probiotics. They are some of the questions that I have been asked through the years. At the end I have provided a shorter list of the main points to understand probiotics as well as shopping points.

What exactly are Probitics exactly?

Probiotics are bacteria living in our bodies. Trillions of living cultures of actual bacteria. There are other of these bacteria living inside us than there are cells that make up our body. An estimated 500-600 trillion live cultures of probiotic bacteria live consumed by the human body (the body comprises of an estimated 100 trillion individual cells).

Shall we be held supposed to have bacteria residing in my body?..

Yes. The word Pro-biotic is a contraction of the Latin - for (pro), along with the Greek - life (bio), "for life." Probiotic means "for life." Probiotics are also referred to as friendly bacteria or intestinal flora.

Are these bacteria an element of my body?

No, probiotics live organisms separate from our bodies but living within us. They've been there since birth and they are supposed to be there. We actually need them.

Exactly why do we have them?

Probiotic bacteria form a symbiotic relationship living within us. The things they're doing for us is mainly two-fold.

Probiotics are a fundamental part of digestion where they perform the final breakdown and absorption of nutrients through the food we eat. The body cannot effectively get nutrition without these bacteria.

At the same time, probiotics are one of our body's main lines of defense against colds and sickness. They fight preventing infectious pathogens for example viruses and unwanted organisms.

How do probiotics fight a chilly?

Probiotics fight virus and bacteria using some ways.

One of the ways probiotic bacteria fight pathogens (infectious agents) is simply by crowding out the invader. Living organisms within the body must attach to living tissue to thrive. They cannot simply float around in your bodies and live. An adequate supply of probiotic bacteria inside the intestinal tract eliminates room for the pathogen to attach and also be.

Another way they fight virus and bacteria could it be is the nature of some pro-biotic strains to find, attack, and destroy invading viruses and bacteria.

A third is, research has shown that many strains of probiotic bacteria stimulate the production of IgA (immunoglobulan antibodies) a critical component of our body's immune system.

Essentially; the gut, stomach, big and small intestine make up the main section of our body's immunological organs. They contain 70 % of all the IgA producing immune cells, which are critical for immune function.

The bottomline is, the health of the colon determines our overall health.

Do I need to/when should I have a probiotic supplement?

Though bodies are being bombarded with viruses and bacteria everyday, probiotics and our defense mechanisms are at work constantly and successfully stop them from gaining a foothold and causing us to sick. There are times though if the probiotics in our body, and our immune system can be overwhelmed, either by too numerous or too powerful an attack. Taking a probiotic supplement at the first sign of a cool significantly enhances our natural abilities to guard against invading pathogens.

If the first signs of a cool come on, many in the nutrition field reach first for a probiotic and second to vitamin c, echinacea, and other anti-viral and cold fighting products.

Another time if it is very important to take probiotic supplements is after a round of antibiotics (looking back at question two, as to the the word "probiotic" means, provides an idea of what antibiotic means).

Antibiotics not just kill harmful bacteria but also kill the healthy friendly bacteria we need. This destruction can ruin digestion and the absorption of nutrition from food. It does not take reason people frequently get diarrhea when taking antibiotics. Since probiotic bacteria are a major component of our defense mechanisms, taking antibiotics also disrupts our natural ability to defend itself against sickness or infection. Even against items that we would normally have beaten with no noticeable symptoms.

These conditions will remain until our gut ecology is re-populated. Having a probiotic supplement can increase this process geometrically. It also helps stay away from the sluggishness often linked to taking antibiotics.

This sound great but why haven't I heard about probiotics before?

You have. However you may not have known what it was. The most well-known probiotic is lactobacillus acidophilus. Everybody is familiar with acidophilus to one the "beneficial" ingredients in yogurt. This is a strain of probiotic bacteria.

 on the supplement bottles "billions" of cultures, is that this too much?

Billions appears like a lot. But remember we've trillions in us right now. Depending on the need people will take anywhere from 1 billion to 100 billion cultures every day.

Can I overdose?

No. The body will get rid of what isn't used.

In extreme cases, or if mega-dosing, when numerous billions of probiotic cultures can be taken per day, gas and bloating can happen.

How do you take them?

It is typically best to take probiotics before eating any breakfast. These strains of bacteria might be delicate and easily affected, reduced in number, or even destroyed during digestion before they even can get to the intestines which is where they do their work. Take probiotics fifteen minutes before a meal (or even better a half an hour) or, no less than a 30 to 45 minutes after a meal (or even better One hour).

Some probiotic products are given a unique outer coating called an enteric coating. Jetski from the capsule from opening inside the stomach where the pH is acidic, or harmful, but opens easily in the small intestine the place that the pH is alkaline, or safe. In such cases taking it with food won't be a problem.

Does brand matter?

Not generally. Apparently all major, or well respected, brands in the nutritional-supplement industry all obtain raw material through the same few main suppliers of bacteria. Any reputable well-known brand carried at the health products retailer needs to be fine.

There's a great deal hype and advertising, just how do i decide which one?

Some manufacturer's have put together with probiotic researchers to learn exactly what the different bacteria requirements in the human body are at varying stages of human development. They've often tailored their items according to the needs of the specific age or condition. This can be excellent.

Other manufacturer's emphasize the volume of cultures in the billions in each capsule of their product, plus some the number of different strains. This really is good. But, something whose strains, and amounts, continues to be linked to a need or an age range is better still.

(At the time of writing this author likes best the "Ultimate Flora" line by Renew Life. It's an excellent blend of; -billions of cultures per capsule, -number if different strains, -which mixture of strains specifically, -overall product design, -targeting for the specific age or condition, -enteric coated vegetarian capsules.

Renew Life is was also the only manufacturer to make sure live cultures not just at the time of manufacture but until expiration date.)

Where should probiotics be stored?

Probiotics are freeze dried before being manufactured and put in capsules, and the bottles are vacuum sealed. This implies they are shelf stable prior to the seal on the bottle is broken.

However, probiotics must be refrigerated once the seal is opened. Without refrigeration the bacteria will "come alive" due to warmth and humidity within our homes. In the absence a source of food and proper environment they're going to die off, and naturally be of no benefit.

What are Pre-biotics?

Pre-biotics is a term used to indicate a fermentable fiber called Fructo-oligosaccharides or FOS. This carbohydrate is usually used as natural a sweetener which is a main source of food for probiotic bacteria. FOS's are often added to a probiotic supplement.

Inulin is a kind of pre-biotic, or FOS, found in many natural and refined food.

Are there any food options for probiotics?

Yes. Probiotics are created through the fermentation process. Generally any fermented food might be a source of probiotics.

Fermented foods include Yogurt and Kefir, Miso, Natto and Tempeh, Pickles and Sour kraut, Kimchi, Soy sauce, plus some Cheeses, usually aged cheese (not processed or baked).

Do specific strains help certain conditions?

Yes. Some strains of probiotic bacteria are particularly good for certain conditions. Lactobacillus Acidophilus for Candidiasis (candida albicans) and Lactobacillus Casei for Salmonella are a couple of examples. In many cases simply finding a product with a mixed mixture of bacteria strains will suffice.

(Expose analsys of which strains might be best suited to which conditions is after dark scope of this Q&A. An instant search on the internet will offer a great deal in this regard; and are perfect places to start.)

Probiotic Points to Ponder..

• Of the billions of bacteria in the world only a few hundred strains are called friendly to the body of a human.

• There are only 14 or 15 different strains employed in probiotic supplements.

• Eighty to 90 % of our probiotics live in the colon, most of the rest are in the sinuses.

• Colds and viruses come from the intestinal tract where linked with emotions . propagate and spread. Probiotics may stop them there.

• Creating a healthy gut ecology is principal to great health. Good health is proportional to the health of the gut ecology.

• Probiotics are really beneficial in fighting candidiasis.


• Probiotics are critical for gut stability and so are therefore extremely helpful for conditions for example Chron's and Colitis.

• After a round of antibiotics our gut ecology is devastated. The antibiotics destroy good and bad bacteria indiscriminately. For this reason we often wind up with diarrhea. Probiotics repopulate healthy bacteria inside the gut and stabilize our intestines.

• According to many nutritionists choosing a probiotic product should be the first distinct defense at the first indication of a cold or illness.

• CFU means Culture Forming Units.

• Probiotics are generally delicate and can be harmed by digestive acids. Therefore you ought to take probiotics on an empty stomach. Many manufacturer's provides enteric coating on their capsule to shield against digestive acids.

• There are far more bifido bacteria than lactobacilli in the body and nearly all stages of human development.

• Lactobacillus Acidophilus (and L. Casei) seems to be among the most robust of probiotic strains and may survive digestion unprotected much better than most other strains.

• Lactobacillus Sporogenes has it's own protective shell therefore also survives digestion well without other protection.

• When choosing a probotic supplement it is best to please take a product with a combination of bacteria strains also to take one that's been turned for an age or condition.

• Going for a product product just one strain of bacteria will nonetheless benefit you to stabilizing the gut ecology, digestion of nutrients, and fighting infection.

• Considering that the body has and requires trillions of cultures, products with 1 billion or fewer cultures per capsule are significantly muted when it comes to their ability to accomplish their job/s as described within this Q&A.

• Most of the probiotic products available at the drug store and supermarket are simply too low dose being of any noticable benefit or value to us.

Probiotic Shopping Points..

Within a probiotic supplement product try to find:

• High billions of cultures (10 billion or more 'CFU's' per capsule).

• Multiple strains of bacteria.

• Guarantee of live organisms printed around the label.

• Enteric coating is often a plus.

• The bacteria blend (and amount) from the product having been made for a specific condition or population is a big plus.

• An organic products industry recognized brand to ensure quality, label claim, and live bacteria guarantee.

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