Published on February 28th, 2021 | by Dr. Doug Pucci0
Probiotics For A Healthy Intestinal Tract
Probiotics first rose to popularity in the 1990s, but have been recommended for good health as fermented foods since ancient times. While research into the modern concept of improving gut health with certain bacteria only began in 1907, it has led to the knowledge we currently have about probiotics and their impact on the gut microbiome. For researchers today, identifying every species in the microbiome is the current equivalent of mapping the human genome: an unexplored frontier.
We hear a lot about the importance of probiotics, but not how much is really known about which strains and how much. Like many other health-related topics, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. The health and balance of our intestinal microbiomes depend on diet, environmental toxin exposure and other factors. Because there are so many personal variables that range all the way back to infancy, the road to a healthy gut is different and ever-changing for everyone.
While many people think that eating yogurt is enough to give them all the probiotic support they need, even a high-quality organic plain yogurt with no added sugars or flavors is only a drop in the bucket of what’s needed to balance the gut ecosystem, which is comprised of trillions of species of good and bad bacteria. Acidophilus is typically the strain found in most yogurts, and while it’s important, a balanced microbiome is more about the collective whole than any one particular strain.
When it comes to probiotics and microbial health, the more diverse the microbiota, the better. This is why diet is so important; the more diversification in the vegetables and fruits being eaten, the more diverse the microbiome will be. These plants feed the healthy gut bacteria, providing them the fuel source they need to transform whole food into useful nutrients. Although there is an increasing array of probiotics that can be taken orally, they should be used in addition to eating a diverse selection of veggies and fruits, rather than replace them.
The beneficial bacteria in probiotics can help to correct many imbalances and aid in digestion by helping to maintain a proper balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut. There are three broad categories of probiotics.
Lactic acid species: These are mostly transient, and have been shown to boost the immune system, help to prevent infection and improve mood. They need to be continually replenished and are the simplest to attain
Soil-based or spore-forming species: these are harvested from soils or grown in a culture medium. In spore form (not having reached the bacteria stage yet), these can get past stomach acids and enzymes that make up the gut’s hostile environment.
Beneficial yeast species: These actually help to prevent yeast overgrowth that can cause yeast infections. One example, S. BoulardiI, protects the intestinal lining and can often survive antibiotic use.
The balance of our intestinal microbiome can shift and change relatively regularly, which is why a switch to healthy eating and lifestyle habits, along with supplemental probiotics, is a front-line strategy for many patients. There are no lab tests yet that can determine which type of probiotic a person needs, but there are specific urine and stool tests that can indicate inflammatory conditions and imbalances. Symptoms that are indicative of a problem include experiencing frequent or continual upset stomach for no apparent reason, diarrhea, constipation, halitosis, bloating, fatigue, depression, weight gain, brain fog and more.
To learn about Dr. Pucci’s Root Cause Solution to chronic health concerns, call 201-261-5430 or register at GetWell-Now.com/webinar.