~ Food Has Power ~
Whole food probiotics are one of the MOST important foods for a healthy body, we are learning, especially in this age of multi-drug resistant bacteria.
Here are extensive references regarding the benefits of probiotics.
There are some 400-600 microbials which inhabit and reproduce in the
gut. Some are only there transiently and therefore, to have a "healthy"
gut (based upon our historical traditional cultures), we need to consume
beneficial microbials regularly. Whole food probiotics more effectively
remain viable until they reach the large intestine. Most bottled
probiotics are denatured during transportation (ie. trucked across the
country, shelf-life, heat damaged), and don't survive the stomach acid
to make it to the gut.
Also, the regular consumption of probiotics alters the ph in the gut,
which impacts which microbials can survive and reproduce there. By
consuming whole food probiotics (proper ph medium for surviving until
they reach the large intestine, more microbial balance, etc.), we create
an environment which is less hospitable for pathological bacteria. Btw,
antibiotics DAMAGE the gut microbial balance by killing off the
beneficial bacteria, which often leads to candida overgrowth and
disrupted gut ph, and thus fewer beneficial bacteria and more
pathological bacteria repopulating the gut.
Here is an informative article "Selection Criteria for Probiotics": http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0ISW/is_2003_Feb-March/ai_97...
Basically, most probiotics are not viable all the way to the gut, due
to heat destruction during transportation and storage, acidity in the
stomach, and low viability powders and capsules, and yogurts without
billions of "Active Live Cultures".
This link objectively discusses specific brands of different probiotics: http://www.usprobiotics.org/products.asp
Also, it is important to rotate probiotics otherwise "probiotic
resistance" could develop, I've read. Don't use single strain probiotics
exclusively; and DO rotate them every 4-7 days. The Probiotic Solution
champions the "pulsing and rotating probiotics". http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0ISW/is_252/ai_n6112818/
Sacchromyces boulardii is a "good" yeast which lives in the gut longer and displaces candida. It is in kombucha.
I prefer whole foods which are naturally cultured or fermented: kefir or
yogurt from cow, goat, coconut, almond, hemp seed milk, etc. And
fermented foods. Bubbies brand sauerkraut and dill pickles are easy to
add to the diet. Plus, kombucha, which actually displaces and replaces
candida albicans in the large intestines.
"Homemade yogurt that is fermented for 24 hours, will have an average
concentration of 3 billion cfu/mL of yogurt. If you were to eat a small
bowl (500 ml) of 24 hour fermented homemade yogurt, you would receive
1.5 trillion beneficial bacteria - 100 times more bacteria than a 15
Furthermore, freshly made kefir can have an average microbial count as
high as 10 billion cfu/ml. This includes a mixture of various bacteria
and yeast strains. This means that a 500 ml glass of homemade kefir
could contain as many as 5 trillion beneficial microorganisms or even
"Both kefir and yogurt are cultured milk products... ...but they contain
different types of beneficial bacteria. Yogurt contains transient
beneficial bacteria that keep the digestive system clean and provide
food for the friendly bacteria that reside there. But kefir can actually
colonize the intestinal tract, a feat that yogurt cannot match.
Kefir contains several major strains of friendly bacteria not commonly
found in yogurt, Lactobacillus Caucasus, Leuconostoc, Acetobacter
species, and Streptococcus species. Dom's Kefir in-site is the most
informed source about everything Kefir. http://users.chariot.net.au/~dna/kefirpage.html
Kefir also contains beneficial yeasts, such as Saccharomyces kefir and
Torula kefir, which dominate, control and eliminate destructive
pathogenic yeasts in the body. They do so by penetrating the mucosal
lining where unhealthy yeast and bacteria reside, forming a virtual SWAT
team that housecleans and strengthens the intestines. Hence, the body
becomes more efficient in resisting such pathogens as E. coli and
Kefir's active yeast and bacteria provide more nutritive value than
yogurt by helping digest the foods that you eat and by keeping the colon
environment clean and healthy.
Because the curd size of kefir is smaller than yogurt, it is also easier
to digest, which makes it a particularly excellent, nutritious food for
babies, invalids and the elderly, as well as a remedy for digestive
Oral administration of milk kefir and soymilk kefir for 28 days
significantly increased the fecal populations of bifidobacteria and
lactobacilli, while it significantly decreased those of Clostridium
Milk kefir and soymilk kefir also significantly decreased the serum
OVA-specific IgE and IgG1 levels for both groups, but not those of the
IgG2a analogues. Consumption of milk kefir and soymilk kefir suppressed
the IgE and IgG1 responses and altered the intestinal microflora in our
supplemented group, suggesting that milk kefir and soymilk kefir may be
considered among the more promising food components in terms of
preventing food allergy and enhancement of mucosal resistance to
gastrointestinal pathogen infection.
Research published by the Society of Chemical Industry reports kefir
contains bacteria which could help reduce allergic responses. The
research indicated that feeding babies kefir may help to protect against
some food allergies.
An Introduction to Probiotics
Keywords: microorganisms, bacteria, yogurt, bladder cancer, eczema, urinary tract infections
On this page:
• Key Points
• What Probiotics Are
• Uses for Health Purposes
• What the Science Says
• Side Effects and Risks
• Some Other Points To Consider
• NCCAM-Sponsored Research on Probiotics
• For More Information
Probiotics are live microorganisms (in most cases, bacteria) that are
similar to beneficial microorganisms found in the human gut. They are
also called "friendly bacteria" or "good bacteria." Probiotics are
available to consumers mainly in the form of dietary supplements and
foods. They can be used as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM)A
group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and
products that are not presently considered to be part of conventional
medicine. Complementary medicine is used together with conventional
medicine, and alternative medicine is used in place of conventional
medicine.. To find out more about topics and resources mentioned in this
fact sheet, see "For More Information."
• People use probiotic products as CAM to prevent and treat certain illnesses and support general wellness.
• There is limited evidence supporting some uses of probiotics. Much
more scientific knowledge is needed about probiotics, including about
their safety and appropriate use.
• Effects found from one species or strain of probiotics do not
necessarily hold true for others, or even for different preparations of
the same species or strain.
• Tell your health care providers about any CAM practices you use.
Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health. This will
help ensure coordinated and safe care. For tips for talking with your
health care providers about CAM, see NCCAM's Time to Talk campaign.
What Probiotics Are
Experts have debated how to define probiotics. One widely used
definition, developed by the World Health Organization and the Food and
Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, is that probiotics are
"live microorganisms, which, when administered in adequate amounts,
confer a health benefit on the host." (Microorganisms are tiny living
organisms—such as bacteria, viruses, and yeasts—that can be seen only
under a microscope.)
Probiotics are not the same thing as prebiotics—nondigestible food
ingredients that selectively stimulate the growth and/or activity of
beneficial microorganisms already in people's colons. When probiotics
and prebiotics are mixed together, they form a synbiotic.
Probiotics are available in foods and dietary supplements (for example,
capsules, tablets, and powders) and in some other forms as well.
Examples of foods containing probiotics are yogurt, fermented and
unfermented milk, miso, tempeh, and some juices and soy beverages. In
probiotic foods and supplements, the bacteria may have been present
originally or added during preparation.
Most probiotics are bacteria similar to those naturally found in
people's guts, especially in those of breastfed infants (who have
natural protection against many diseases). Most often, the bacteria come
from two groups, Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium. Within each group,
there are different species (for example, Lactobacillus acidophilus and
Bifidobacterium bifidus), and within each species, different strains (or
varieties). A few common probiotics, such as Saccharomyces boulardii,
are yeasts, which are different from bacteria.
Some probiotic foods date back to ancient times, such as fermented foods
and cultured milk products. Interest in probiotics in general has been
growing; Americans' spending on probiotic supplements, for example,
nearly tripled from 1994 to 2003.
Uses for Health Purposes
There are several reasons that people are interested in probiotics for health purposes.
First, the world is full of microorganisms (including bacteria), and so
are people's bodies—in and on the skin, in the gut, and in other
orifices. Friendly bacteria are vital to proper development of the
immune system, to protection against microorganisms that could cause
disease, and to the digestion and absorption of food and nutrients. Each
person's mix of bacteria varies. Interactions between a person and the
microorganisms in his body, and among the microorganisms themselves, can
be crucial to the person's health and well-being.
This bacterial "balancing act" can be thrown off in two major ways:
1. By antibiotics, when they kill friendly bacteria in the gut along
with unfriendly bacteria. Some people use probiotics to try to offset
side effects from antibiotics like gas, cramping, or diarrhea.
Similarly, some use them to ease symptoms of lactose intolerance—a
condition in which the gut lacks the enzyme needed to digest significant
amounts of the major sugar in milk, and which also causes
2. "Unfriendly" microorganisms such as disease-causing bacteria,
yeasts, fungi, and parasites can also upset the balance. Researchers are
exploring whether probiotics could halt these unfriendly agents in the
first place and/or suppress their growth and activity in conditions
o Infectious diarrhea
o Irritable bowel syndrome
o Inflammatory bowel disease (e.g., ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease)
o Infection with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), a bacterium that
causes most ulcers and many types of chronic stomach inflammation
o Tooth decay and periodontal disease
o Vaginal infections
o Stomach and respiratory infections that children acquire in daycare
o Skin infections
Another part of the interest in probiotics stems from the fact there are
cells in the digestive tract connected with the immune system. One
theory is that if you alter the microorganisms in a person's intestinal
tract (as by introducing probiotic bacteria), you can affect the immune
What the Science Says
Scientific understanding of probiotics and their potential for
preventing and treating health conditions is at an early stage, but
moving ahead. In November 2005, a conference that was cofunded by the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and
convened by the American Society for Microbiology explored this topic.
According to the conference report, some uses of probiotics for which
there is some encouraging evidence from the study of specific probiotic
formulations are as follows:
• To treat diarrhea (this is the strongest area of evidence, especially for diarrhea from rotavirus)
• To prevent and treat infections of the urinary tract or female genital tract
• To treat irritable bowel syndrome
• To reduce recurrence of bladder cancer
• To shorten how long an intestinal infection lasts that is caused by a bacterium called Clostridium difficile
• To prevent and treat pouchitis (a condition that can follow surgery to remove the colon)
• To prevent and manage atopic dermatitis (eczema) in children
The conference panel also noted that in studies of probiotics as cures,
any beneficial effect was usually low; a strong placebo effect often
occurs; and more research (especially in the form of large, carefully
designed clinical trials) is needed in order to draw firmer conclusions.
Some other areas of interest to researchers on probiotics are
• What is going on at the molecular level with the bacteria
themselves and how they may interact with the body (such as the gut and
its bacteria) to prevent and treat diseases. Advances in technology and
medicine are making it possible to study these areas much better than in
• Issues of quality. For example, what happens when probiotic
bacteria are treated or are added to foods—is their ability to survive,
grow, and have a therapeutic effect altered?
• The best ways to administer probiotics for therapeutic purposes, as well as the best doses and schedules.
• Probiotics' potential to help with the problem of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the gut.
• Whether they can prevent unfriendly bacteria from getting through
the skin or mucous membranes and traveling through the body (e.g., which
can happen with burns, shock, trauma, or suppressed immunity).
Side Effects and Risks
Some live microorganisms have a long history of use as probiotics
without causing illness in people. Probiotics' safety has not been
thoroughly studied scientifically, however. More information is
especially needed on how safe they are for young children, elderly
people, and people with compromised immune systems.
Probiotics' side effects, if they occur, tend to be mild and digestive
(such as gas or bloating). More serious effects have been seen in some
people. Probiotics might theoretically cause infections that need to be
treated with antibiotics, especially in people with underlying health
conditions. They could also cause unhealthy metabolic activities, too
much stimulation of the immune system, or gene transfer (insertion of
genetic material into a cell).
Probiotic products taken by mouth as a dietary supplementA product that
contains vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino acids,
enzymes, and/or other ingredients intended to supplement the diet. The
U.S. Food and Drug Administration has special labeling requirements for
dietary supplements. are manufactured and regulated as foods, not drugs.
Saccharomyces boulardi (large cells) found along with bacteria in fermented fruit juice.
Some Other Points To Consider
• If you are thinking about using a probiotic product as CAM, consult
your health care provider first. No CAM therapy should be used in place
of conventional medical care or to delay seeking that care.
• Effects from one species or strain of probiotics do not necessarily
hold true for others, or even for different preparations of the same
species or strain.
• If you use a probiotic product and experience an effect that concerns you, contact your health care provider.
• You can locate research reports in peer-reviewed journals on
probiotics' effectiveness and safety through the resources PubMed and
CAM on PubMed.
NCCAM-Sponsored Research on Probiotics
Among recent NCCAM-sponsored research are the following projects:
• Investigators at Tulane University School of Public Health and
Tropical Medicine are studying the effectiveness of selected probiotic
agents to treat diarrhea in undernourished children in a developing
• At the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, researchers have been
examining probiotics for possibly decreasing the levels of certain
substances in the urine that can cause problems such as kidney stones.
• A team at Tufts-New England Medical Center is studying probiotics
for treating an antibiotic-resistant type of bacteria that causes severe
infections in people who are hospitalized, live in nursing homes, or
have weakened immune systems.
Sources are primarily recent reviews on the general topic of probiotics
in the peer-reviewed medical and scientific literature in English in the
PubMed database, selected evidence-based databases, and Federal
• 1994–2004 U.S. specialty/other supplement sales. Nutrition Business Journal. 2005. Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Alvarez-Olmos MI, Oberhelman RA. Probiotic agents and infectious
diseases: a modern perspective on a traditional therapy. Clinical
Infectious Diseases. 2001;32(11):1567–1576.
• Bifidobacteria. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Web site. Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Bifidus. Thomson MICROMEDEX AltMedDex System. Web site Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Cabana MD, Shane AL, Chao C, et al. Probiotics in primary care pediatrics. Clinical Pediatrics. 2006;45(5):405–410.
• Doron S, Gorbach SL. Probiotics: their role in the treatment and
prevention of disease. Expert Review of Anti-Infective Therapy.
• Ezendam J, van Loveren H. Probiotics: immunomodulation and
evaluation of safety and efficacy. Nutrition Reviews. 2006;64(1):1–14.
• Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations and
World Health Organization (WHO). Guidelines for the Evaluation of
Probiotics in Food. Report of a Joint FAO/WHO Working Group on Drafting
Guidelines for the Evaluation of Probiotics in Food. Accessed on
December 7, 2006.
• Gill HS, Guarner F. Probiotics and human health: a clinical
perspective. Postgraduate Medical Journal. 2004;80(947):516–526.
• Hammerman C, Bin-Nun A, Kaplan M. Safety of probiotics: comparison of two popular strains. BMJ. 2006;333(7576):1006–1008.
• Huebner ES, Surawicz CM. Probiotics in the prevention and treatment
of gastrointestinal infections. Gastroenterology Clinics of North
• Lactobacillus. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Web site. Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Lactobacillus. Thomson MICROMEDEX AltMedDex System Web site. Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Probiotics: Bottom Line Monograph. Natural Standard Database Web site. Accessed on December 7, 2006.
• Reid G, Hammond JA. Probiotics: some evidence of their effectiveness. Canadian Family Physician. 2005;51:1487–1493.
• Salminen SJ, Gueimonde M, Isolauri E. Probiotics that modify disease risk. Journal of Nutrition. 2005;135(5):1294–1298.
• Vanderhoof JA, Young RJ. Current and potential uses of probiotics.
Annals of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology. 2004; 93(5 suppl
• Walker R, Buckley M. Probiotic Microbes: The Scientific Basis.
Report of an American Society for Microbiology colloquium; November 5–7,
2005; Baltimore, Maryland. American Society for Microbiology Web site.
Accessed on December 7, 2006.
The NCCAM Clearinghouse provides information on CAM and NCCAM, including
publications and searches of Federal databases of scientific and
medical literature. The Clearinghouse does not provide medical advice,
treatment recommendations, or referrals to practitioners.
Toll-free in the U.S.: 1-888-644-6226
TTY (for deaf and hard-of-hearing callers): 1-866-464-3615
Web site: nccam.nih.gov
E-mail: email@example.com Contact NCCAM
A service of the National Library of Medicine (NLM), PubMed contains
publication information and (in most cases) brief summaries of articles
from scientific and medical journals. CAM on PubMed, developed jointly
by NCCAM and NLM, is a subset of the PubMed system and focuses on the
topic of CAM.
Web site: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez
CAM on PubMed: nccam.nih.gov/research/camonpubmed/
NCCAM thanks the following people for their technical expertise and
review of this publication: Carol Wells, Ph.D., University of Minnesota
Medical School; Richard Oberhelman, M.D., Tulane University School of
Public Health and Tropical Medicine; Patricia Hibberd, M.D., Ph.D.,
Tufts-New England Medical Center; Richard Walker, Ph.D., U.S. Food and
Drug Administration; and Marguerite Klein, M.S., R.D., and Jonathan
(Josh) Berman, M.D., Ph.D., NCCAM.
This publication is not copyrighted and is in the public domain. Duplication is encouraged.
NCCAM has provided this material for your information. It is not
intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your
primary health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions
about treatment or care with your health care provider. The mention of
any product, service, or therapy is not an endorsement by NCCAM.
NCCAM Publication No. D345
Created January 2007
Updated August 2008
Probiotics are dietary supplements of live bacteria or yeasts thought to
be healthy for the host organism. According to the currently adopted
definition by FAO/WHO, probiotics are: ‘Live microorganisms which when
administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the
Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are the most common type of microbes used.
LAB have been used in the food industry for many years, because they are
able to convert sugars (including lactose) and other carbohydrates into
lactic acid. This not only provides the characteristic sour taste of
fermented dairy foods such as yogurt, but also, by lowering the pH, may
create fewer opportunities for spoilage organisms to grow, hence
creating possible health benefits by preventing gastrointestinal
infections. Strains of the genera Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium,
are the most widely used probiotic bacteria.
Probiotic bacterial cultures are intended to assist the body's naturally
occurring gut flora, an ecology of microbes, to re-establish
themselves. They are sometimes recommended by doctors, and, more
frequently, by nutritionists, after a course of antibiotics, or as part
of the treatment for gut related candidiasis. In these cases, the
bacteria that work well with our bodies (see symbiosis) may decrease in
number, an event which allows harmful competitors to thrive, to the
detriment of our health. Claims are made that probiotics strengthen the
immune system to combat allergies, excessive alcohol intake, stress,
exposure to toxic substances, and other diseases.
Maintenance of a healthy gut flora is, however, dependent on many factors, especially the quality of food intake.
Experiments into the benefits of probiotic therapies suggest a range of
potentially beneficial medicinal uses for probiotics. For many of the
potential benefits, research is limited and only preliminary results are
available. It should be noted that the effects described are not
general effects of probiotics. Recent research on the molecular biology
and genomics of Lactobacillus has focused on the interaction with the
immune system, anti-cancer potential, and potential as a biotherapeutic
agent in cases of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, travellers'
diarrhoea, pediatric diarrhoea, inflammatory bowel disease and irritable
All effects can only be attributed to the individual strain(s) tested.
Testing of a supplement does not indicate benefit from any other strain
of the same species, and testing does not indicate benefit from the
whole group of LAB (or other probiotics).
Managing lactose intolerance
As lactic acid bacteria actively convert lactose into lactic acid,
ingestion of certain active strains may help lactose intolerant
individuals tolerate more lactose than what they would have
otherwise. In practice probiotics are not specifically targeted for
this purpose, as most are relatively low in lactase activity as compared
to the normal yogurt bacteria.
Prevention of colon cancer
In laboratory investigations, some strains of LAB (Lactobacillus
bulgaricus) have demonstrated anti-mutagenic effects thought to be due
to their ability to bind with heterocyclic amines, which are
carcinogenic substances formed in cooked meat. Animal studies have
demonstrated that some LAB can protect against colon cancer in rodents,
though human data is limited and conflicting. Most human trials have
found that the strains tested may exert anti-carcinogenic effects by
decreasing the activity of an enzyme called β-glucuronidase (which
can generate carcinogens in the digestive system). Lower rates of colon
cancer among higher consumers of fermented dairy products have been
observed in some population studies.
Animal studies have demonstrated the efficacy of a range of LAB to be
able to lower serum cholesterol levels, presumably by breaking down bile
in the gut, thus inhibiting its reabsorption (which enters the blood as
cholesterol). Some, but not all human trials have shown that dairy
foods fermented with specific LAB can produce modest reductions in total
and LDL cholesterol levels in those with normal levels to begin with,
however trials in hyperlipidemic subjects are needed.
Lowering blood pressure
Several small clinical trials have shown that consumption of milk
fermented with various strains of LAB can result in modest reductions in
blood pressure. It is thought that this is due to the ACE
inhibitor-like peptides produced during fermentation.
Improving immune function and preventing infections
LAB are thought to have several presumably beneficial effects on immune
function. They may protect against pathogens by means of competitive
inhibition (i.e., by competing for growth) and there is evidence to
suggest that they may improve immune function by increasing the number
of IgA-producing plasma cells, increasing or improving phagocytosis as
well as increasing the proportion of T lymphocytes and Natural Killer
cells. Clinical trials have demonstrated that probiotics may
decrease the incidence of respiratory tract infections and dental
caries in children. LAB foods and supplements have been shown to be
effective in the treatment and prevention of acute diarrhea, and in
decreasing the severity and duration of rotavirus infections in children
and travelers' diarrhea in adults. Recently, clear immune
enhancing effect of probiotics is demonstrated in the gut of healthy
subjects. In a randomized, double blind, placebo controlled, crossover
study, healthy volunteers ingested either live probiotic cells
(Lactobacillus plantarum), inactivated cells of the same probiotic, or a
placebo. Gene expression analysis of biopsies from the duodenum has
shown clearly the effect of the live probiotic on cellular processes.
These processes activate the immune system enabling it to play its
protective role (the immune response). Research Top Institute Food and
LAB are also thought to aid in the treatment of Helicobacter pylori
infections (which cause peptic ulcers) in adults when used in
combination with standard medical treatments. However more studies are
required into this area.
A meta-analysis suggested probiotics may reduce antibiotic-associated
diarrhea. A subsequent randomized controlled trial also found
benefit in elderly patients.
In a randomized clinical trial, published in 2007, a University of
Montreal team of pharmacologists demonstrated that
lactobacilli-fermented solution can be effective in AAD prevention in
In 2009 Encap Drug Delivery announced that they had entered into a
collaboration with Probac AB to develop a novel probiotic capsule
product aimed at treating antibiotic associated diarrhoea.
LAB foods and supplements have been found to modulate inflammatory and
hypersensitivity responses, an observation thought to be at least in
part due to the regulation of cytokine function. Clinical studies
suggest that they can prevent reoccurrences of inflammatory bowel
disease in adults, as well as improve milk allergies. They are
not effective for treating eczema, a persistent skin inflammation.
Improving mineral absorption
It is hypothesized that probiotic lactobacilli may help correct
malabsorption of trace minerals, found particularly in those with diets
high in phytate content from whole grains, nuts, and legumes.
Prevents harmful bacterial growth under stress
In a study done to see the effects of stress on intestinal flora, rats
that were fed probiotics had little occurrence of harmful bacteria
latched onto their intestines compared to rats that were fed sterile
Irritable bowel syndrome and colitis
B. infantis 35624, sold as Align, was found to improve some symptoms of
irritable bowel syndrome in women in a recent study. Another
probiotic bacterium, Lactobacillus plantarum 299v, was also found to be
effective in reducing IBS symptoms. Additionally, a probiotic
formulation, VSL#3, was found to be safe in treating ulcerative colitis,
though efficacy in the study was uncertain. Bifidobacterium
animalis DN-173 010 may help.
As probiotics are mainly active in the small intestine and prebiotics
are only effective in the large intestine, the combination of the
two may give a synergistic effect. Appropriate combinations of pre- and
probiotics are synbiotics.
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69. ^ Probiotics, not so friendly after all?
70. ^ Probiotics, not so friendly after all?
Prebiotics are non-digestible food ingredients that stimulate the growth
or activity of bacteria in the digestive system which are beneficial to
the health of the body. They are considered a functional food.
Typically, prebiotics are carbohydrates (such as oligosaccharides), but
the definition does not preclude non-carbohydrates. The most prevalent
forms of prebiotics are nutritionally classed as soluble fiber. To some
extent, many forms of dietary fiber exhibit some level of prebiotic
Roberfroid offered a refined definition in the 2007 Journal of Nutrutrition (J. Ntr. 137:830S) stating:
"A prebiotic is a selectively fermented ingredient that allows specific
changes, both in the composition and/or activity in the gastrointestinal
microflora that confers benefits upon host well-being and health."
• International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics
• Probiotics: Considerations for Human Health
• Getting To Know "Friendly Bacteria"
• GutFlora.org: New developments and general information on probiotics
• Probiotics: Friendly Bacteria With a Host of Benefits
• International Food Information Council
• National Yogurt Association
Healing with Probiotics: http://www.healingdaily.com/detoxification-diet/probiotics.htm
Mayo Clinic, Probiotics: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/probiotics/AN00389
Beet Test (stomach acid?)