Are Some Strains Better Than Others
Many probiotics contain mixtures of two or more individual strains of bacteria or yeasts. They may also contain prebiotics, which are compounds that the probiotics can feed on. If a formula contains both probiotics and prebiotics, it is called a synbiotic.
Products most often contain Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium species, although many other species exist. Different strains of the same species of probiotics can act in different ways, according to some research .
Some people take probiotics for maintaining everyday health. When using a probiotic for a specific health concern, people should speak to a healthcare professional about the best strategy. This is because show that different probiotics and dosages are effective for different conditions and situations.
Read on to learn more about the best probiotics for specific uses.
People can take probiotics in supplement form or in the form of foods and beverages such as yogurt and drinks that have live cultures added to them.
Fermented foods also naturally contain beneficial bacteria. Examples of fermented foods include:
Probiotic manufacturers measure amounts of bacteria in colony-forming units . Supplements can vary, with some commonly having a CFU of billions. Foods with added probiotics often contain lower numbers of bacteria. Generally, people might take higher-CFU products for specific conditions and a lower-CFU product for general health maintenance.
Why Do People Take Probiotics
Although research is ongoing, theres good evidence that some probiotics may be helpful in treating irritable bowel syndrome, some types of diarrhea, colitis , acne, and eczema in children. They may also be used with antibiotics to help prevent diarrhea that may come with taking antibiotics.
In addition, researchers are studying probiotics to determine if they may help certain types of stomach ulcers , infections , dental disease, allergies, and diseases of the liver. However, more research is needed to determine if probiotics are safe and effective for these conditions.
There are many types of probiotics. They include lactobacilli , bifidobacteria and some yeasts . Different probiotics have different effects. So while one may help treat diarrhea or a vaginal infection, another may have no effect. Before you start taking a probiotic supplement, talk to your health care provider to make sure that you get the treatment most likely to help.
Probiotics are different from prebiotics. Prebiotics are non-digestible ingredients in foods that are used to spur the growth of probiotic bacteria in the body by providing a suitable environment in which the probiotics themselves can flourish. Synbiotics are combinations of prebiotics with probiotics.
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How Can You Tell If Probiotics Are Alive And Active
Our gastrointestinal tract is home to trillions of microbes. A balanced microbiome helps keep us healthy, energetic, and in a good mood.
Probiotics contain a combination of live beneficial microorganisms that provide physiological benefits to our health. Primarily, these are good bacteria that are naturally occurring in fermented foods.
While probiotics are present in a variety of foods, they are also commonly consumed as a dietary supplement. If youve purchased a probioitic supplement, you might be wondering, How do I know if my probiotics are still alive and active?
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What Does The Research Say
Dr Lynne McFarland from the University of Seattle has authored over 150 peer-reviews, and has concluded from current data that adding more strains doesn’t always lead to better outcomes for all illnesses1. But, she also acknowledges that:
‘…the benefits of multi-strain mixtures may include broader range of effects and more mechanisms of action’
There are clearly pros and cons for both single and multi-strain probiotics the former being more stable, the latter having the potential to offer more benefits, dependent on the strains used and condition being targeted.Some of the most popular probiotic strains on the market only contain one strain. These are known as ‘single-strain probiotics’. Saccharomyces boulardii on its own, for example, can be a great option for supporting people with IBS-D, and research has indicated that sometimes single-strain probiotics have been associated with better results than multi-strain probiotics. When dealing with Helicobacter pylori, for example, using a single strain leads to a 0.66 day reduction in diarrhoea, whilst a two-strain mix leads to a 0.41 day reduction. In this instance, the single strain was more effective.
But, importantly, Dr. McFarland considers that “these are both significant reductions”.
Saccharomyces boulardii can be found in Optibac Probiotics S. boulardii.
What Is The Quality Of The Probiotic
Probiotics are currently not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, which means quality and purity testing are not required because probiotics are not intended to prevent, treat or cure disease. But there are other ways to measure quality. Look for reputable brands and probiotics that say they are third-party reviewed and tested. For example, the label may say that the probiotics are manufactured in cGMP certified facilities. A cGMP certification means that manufacturers evaluate their ingredientsâ identity, purity, strength and composition.
Some companies will also list where their ingredients are sourced. You will want to select something that says traceable or DNA identified. This means that the strains are verified and come from quality sources. Does the manufacturer do clinical tests on the strains or discuss using clinically tested strains? Different strains have different functions, so you will want to select a strain that is proven to be beneficial.
Last, check the expiration date. If the date has passed, the probiotic likely wont be as potent as the label claims. Bacteria only live for so long, so many probiotic companies only guarantee their products until the best if used by date.
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Take Back Your Gut Health
At Global Health Trax, we take pride in creating dependable, natural supplements that help our customers keep their wellbeing on track. Our mission is to deliver the best digestive nutritional products with progressive formulations for optimal wellness, longevity, and quality of life for people across the world.
What Happens When You Take A Probiotic Every Day
Many people have no idea what they are taking and how it affects their bodies. Probiotics are actually good bacteria that are usually found in the digestive tract.
When they are there, they help your digestion process and keep you regular. But sometimes they get lost in other bacteria that make up the digestive system.
When you take a probiotic every day, you will increase the number of good bacteria in your digestive tract.
Many of the antibiotics used to treat conditions like inflammatory bowel disease can have some serious side effects.
You could end up having diarrhea or other problems as a side effect. If you are taking antibiotics for a longer period of time, you could even be making your own bacteria disappear!
This is why many people who are taking antibiotics for other ailments, as well as pregnant women, cannot take probiotics. They undo all of the good work that the original antibiotics have done.
Probiotic bacteria need a steady supply of carbohydrates and protein to survive.
If you change your diet so that you are getting enough carbohydrates and protein, and you eat only raw or uncooked vegetables and fruits, you will start to see the benefits almost immediately.
You may find that you have more energy, feel better, and have more rest. If you are taking an antibiotic, you may experience a decrease in the size of the bacteria or an increase in the opposite type.
Probiotic Yoghurt For Kids
If you are looking for a probiotic yoghurt for kids, you may find that some yoghurt drinks contain Lactobacillus casei Shirota. This strain is present in the brand Yakult, one of the earliest commercial probiotics first sold. Fun fact, it was discovered around 1935!
In adults, this strain has been shown to improve constipation.
The opposite was found to be true in children. Shirota helped reduce the symptoms of diarrhoea in a childrens trial in India but only by 14%.
Other benefits of this strain include reduced frequency of colds in athletes and in smokers.
Similarly, yoghurt ranges like Activia also contain added probiotic strains, including Bifidobacterium lactis.
B. lactis BB-12 has been shown in adult clinical trials to be effective in relieving symptoms of constipation. Again, the opposite was true for infants. A clinical trial of 90 infants showed that this strain was effective in preventing diarrhoea.
Why Do Some Companies Offer 50 Or 100 Billion
Most professionals in the digestive health space will advise you to consume 10 billion CFUs daily to maintain digestive and immune health. If that is the case, why do some manufactures offer much larger CFU counts in their products?
There are three reasons:
- An inefficient delivery system requires many more cultures to deliver a minimum acceptable amount.
- From a marketing perspective, we humans often believe that more is better. The fact is that this isnt always true.
- We may require additional support, but only a higher amount for short periods.
What if you need additional support? If you have confidence in your delivery system, i.e., one that consistently delivers a vast majority of the noted CFUs into your gut, for more support many professionals advise around 20 Billion cultures a day. Gene Bruno, MS, MHS, Provost and Chief Academic Officer of the Huntington College of Health Sciences notes that higher doses may be indicated for shorter periods of time
For major health problems, consult your healthcare professional.
Until next time, Be Well and Stay Healthy!
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What Are The Benefits Of Taking Probiotics
Probiotic supplements have been shown to benefit health in a number of ways.
Yet, some of the purported benefits of probiotics arent supported by research, so its important to always consult a healthcare professional before taking a probiotic supplement, especially if youre hoping to improve symptoms related to a health condition.
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Which Has More Probiotics Sauerkraut And Kimchi
When compared to sauerkraut, kimchi includes a higher concentration of probiotics, resulting in more noticeable probiotic effects. Does it work to substitute sauerkraut for the Kimchi? Yes, kimchi has greater health advantages and a fuller flavor than sauerkraut, making it a far superior choice over the latter.
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Are Multiple Strains Better When Choosing A Probiotic
No, the number of strains does not determine if one probiotic is better than another.Some probiotic brands offer products with multiple strains of bacteria with the rationale that this may replicate the normal environment of the gut. However, research has shown that the “more is better” concept is not necessarily true. Multiple strains do not make one probiotic better than another. The specific strain in the probiotic and the research supporting the health benefits of the strain is important to consider when choosing what probiotic is best for you.
Whats In The Supplement
The type of bacteria in your probiotic supplement is important, but the exact strain used is more critical than you may think. Different probiotic strains can vary drastically in effectiveness and duration of your results.
The Culturelle® Probiotic Advantage:
Culturelle® probiotic supplements contain live, active cultures of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG ATCC 53103. The two doctors who discovered the strain in 1985 at Tufts University in Boston, MA, Sherwood L. Gorbach and Barry R. Goldin, found that it was the ultimate in probiotic power – strong enough and sticky enough to survive stomach acids and successfully set up shop in the intestines. The LGG® probiotic strain is naturally sourced, and proven to work in harmony with the human body.
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Box : Consensus Panel Recommendations For The Scope Of Probiotics
Retain the FAO/WHO definition for probiotics, with a minor grammatical correction as live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host inconsistences between the Expert Consultation and the FAO/WHO Guidelines were clarified
Include in the framework for definition of probiotics microbial species that have been shown in properly controlled studies to confer benefits to health
Any specific claim beyond contains probiotics must be further substantiated
Keep live cultures, traditionally associated with fermented foods and for which there is no evidence of a health benefit, outside the probiotic framework
Keep undefined, faecal microbiota transplants outside the probiotic framework
New commensals and consortia comprising defined strains from human samples, with adequate evidence of safety and efficacy, are âprobioticsâ
Abbreviation: FAO, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
What Are The Risks Of Ingesting Probiotics
- Side effects. Probiotics seem to have few side effects. Some may cause intestinal gas and bloating. However, this is likely to get better over time. If your probiotics are causing these side effects, try decreasing the dose or using it every other day.
- Interactions. If you have any medical problems or take any medicines regularly, talk to your health care provider before you start using probiotics. They could interact with medicines such as antibiotics or immunosuppressive drugs.
- Risks. If you have intestinal disease or damage, HIV, cancer, a weakened immune system, or excessive bacteria in your intestines, dont use probiotics without checking first with your health care provider.
Lactobacillus and bifidobacteria are two of the most common types of probiotics on the market.
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May Improve Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms
With irritable bowel syndrome , people often experience abdominal pain, bloating, gas and bouts of diarrhea and constipation. A review of 15 studies published in World Journal of Gastroenterology found consuming probiotics to be associated with a reduction in abdominal pain and other symptom severityDidari T, Mozaffari S, Nikfar S, Abdollahi M. Effectiveness of probiotics in irritable bowel syndrome: Updated systematic review with meta-analysis. World J Gastroenterol. 2015 21:30723084. . Specifically, a review in Gastroenterology and Hepatology found that, there is growing evidence that B. infantis is becoming the frontrunner for treatment of IBSAragon G, Graham DB, Borum M, Doman DB. Probiotic therapy for irritable bowel syndrome. Gastroenterol Hepatol . 2010 6:39-44. .
Signs You Are Taking Too Many Probiotics: 2 Gas
Gas and bloating often go hand in hand. The digestive process itself normally produces gas. The average person passes gas 13 to 21 times per day.
Gas in your GI tract comes from air that you swallow or by the break down of undigested foods by bacteria in your colon . Normally, as bacteria digest food in your gut, gas is released. Certain foods, particularly those high in fiber, cause more gas production than others.
Probiotic supplements essentially provide your gut with more of the good digestive bacteria. Overdosing on that bacteria can cause increased gas .
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Make Sure Theyre Safe For You
For most people in good health, experts say probiotics wonât cause any issues. If you do get side effects, theyâre usually very mild, like a little more gas than usual.
But use caution if you have a serious health condition or your immune system â your bodyâs defense against germs â is weak. In those cases, itâs best to check with your doctor first to see if theyâre safe.
Also talk to your doctor before giving probiotics to your infant, especially if theyâre sick.
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How To Determine Whether Probiotics Should Be Refrigerated
Generally, most supplement manufacturers say on the label whether probiotics are shelf stable or require refrigeration.
If there are no specific storage instructions listed on the label, your probiotic is likely shelf stable and doesnt need refrigerating.
Another way to determine whether you should refrigerate your probiotics is to consider how they were stored upon purchase.
For example, probiotics that require refrigeration are typically found in the refrigerated section of the store or pharmacy. Alternatively, if you buy a supplement online and its shipped in an ice pack or insulated thermal bag, its likely best to refrigerate it once it arrives.
Most probiotic supplements provide storage instructions on the label. Probiotics that are stored in the refrigerated section of the store or shipped with an ice pack may also require refrigeration.
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Identification Of The Bacterial Strains And Yeast
The genomic DNA sequences of the strains were queried with available gene sequences in the GenBank library database. Strains CP133 form rice straw silage and CP134 from Kimchi are 99% homologous to Lactobacillus paracasei and Lactobacillus plantarum , respectively. The 16S rRNA genomic DNA sequence of CP350 isolated from livestock slurry exhibited a maximum identity of 100% with Bacillus subtilis subsp subtilis . In addition, the internal transcribed spacer sequences of CP605 isolated from farm soil show 99% similarity with Saccharomyces cerevisiae . Furthermore, the phylogenic relationship between the bacterial strains was established based on maximum likelihood evolutionary distances of 16S rRNA sequences, as shown in Fig 1A. A similar evolutionary relationship for the yeast was determined based on its internal transcribed spacer gene sequence compared with type strains in GenBank .
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Make Sure Your Probiotics Don’t Go Bad
Always look for the manufacturing date or expiration date, after which the potency on the bottle can no longer be guaranteed. Most probiotics are good for two years from the manufacturing date, but ask the manufacturer if that information is not clear on their website.
Many high-quality shelf-stable probiotics exist. These do not require refrigeration. Other formulations do. The label should tell you specifically whether or not to refrigerate.
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