Probiotics

Probiotics are live microorganisms found mainly in our intestinal tract (also called “friendly” or “good” bacteria) that can offer many health benefits. They can be useful in treating conditions such as gastrointestinal infections, certain bowel disorders, allergies, and urogenital infections, all of which afflict a large portion of the world’s population.

Probiotics are good health insurance. They can be taken preventatively to strengthen immunity. Studies have found that probiotics help to make the body more alkaline and improve mineral & nutrient absorption.

How do they help?

Probiotics:

Promote the growth of healthy bacteria in the colon to create a strong colon lining.

  • Maintain a regular and healthy bowel.
  • Work to reduce the conversion of bile into carcinogens.
  • Also help to flush out any pathogen cells by binding with them in the digestive tract.
  • Help synthetize some vitamins, such as B and K.
  • Contribute to the production of digestive enzymes and aid the absorption of calcium, magnesium and iron.

Did you know 80% of your immune system resides in your guts?

Probiotic are essential to support and stimulate the immune system.

When choosing a probiotic, you may want to consider a multi-strain, high potency which is often more effective. A majority of Lactobacillus strains help with small intestine related health issues and yeast infections. Bifidobacterium strains target mainly your colon (IBS, weak immune system).

Enteric Coating

Enteric coating ensures that probiotics resist the acidity of the stomach so that the capsule starts dissolving in the intestines. This would be an issue if the probiotic is taken on an empty stomach. But as stomach acidity is generally lower a couple of hours after a meal this would be the perfect time to take a non-enteric coated probiotic.

How to maintain a healthy intestinal bacteria balance

A diet rich in fresh vegetables and fermented food will provide prebiotics which will allow a healthy fermentation of probiotics in your gut. Note that a diet high in sugar, processed food and refined carbohydrates can increase the pathogen bacteria.

  • Antibiotics don’t discriminate between friendly and pathogenic bacteria, so can seriously compromise one’s healthy intestinal flora. Be sure to supplement with a probiotic during and after taking antibiotics.
  • Anti-acid pills can modify the pH in your gut and therefore contribute to an environment where harmful bacteria will thrive.
  • The composition and population of our intestinal flora in the colon can decrease with age. Taking a 50+ probiotic may be helpful to those who are older, and at higher risk for infections.

If you’re not sure about which probiotic to use, talk to your healthcare practitioner or come and ask the Wellness Staff about our probiotics.

 Julia’s Pick

Bio-K CL1285 liquid probiotic 50 billion.

Julia-staff-pick-2014-bioK_web

I found that even half a bottle is super-efficient and makes me feel better almost instantly!

Feeling under the weather, or having a weird tummy feeling, it brings me back to balance!

Its efficacy and safety was assessed in a study published in the Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology (a prestigious peer-reviewed medical journal). This double blind, randomized study suggested that Bio K was effective against C. difficile, a nasty pathogen that threatens hospitalized patients.

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