What supplement can not only improve digestion and elimination, but also boost the immune system and fight off infection? If you guessed probiotics you are right.
What are Probiotics
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live primarily in our digestive system. Many people are familiar with yogurt, a food that ideally contains these kind of beneficial microorganisms. Lactobacillus is just one of a number of species that are beneficial to our health. Probiotics also come in supplement form.
Here are some of the benefits of probiotics:
They help us digest and process food, promotes regularity and helps improve mineral absorption.
Probiotics support the small intestine to promote healthy immunity, inhibit yeasts and enhance digestion of milk products. They also benefit the large intestine as the first-choice, safe colon cleanse product that supports healthy liver function.
Why Are Probiotics Important
The health of the human digestive tract is a much more important determinant of vitality than most people realize. Though it runs deep through the center of the body, the digestive tract is actually exposed to the outer environment through the intake of food.
Not only that, but through its connection with the liver, whatever is happening in the gut influences the health of the blood and lymph. In addition, the lymphatic system interfaces with the gut; throughout the small intestine are lymphoid tissues called 'Peyer's Patches,' which connect with the lymphatic system. If the microorganisms in the small intestine are out of balance, that can affect the health of the whole body!
Sometimes we overlook the simplest ways to boost our vitality. I must admit that for years I didn't use probiotics. Why? Because I had given up on finding one that had any tangible benefits. Also, my diet includes plenty of raw dairy and other raw foods, and I figured I was getting all manner of beneficial microorganisms just through what I eat.
In 30 years of involvement with nutritional supplements, I have used many products that claimed to contain live, potent, beneficial bacteria. For the most part, I never noticed much benefit and usually discontinued them.
Just Say 'No' to Soil-Based Organisms
One well-known company sells probiotics made with 'soil-based organisms.' The products from that company actually made me feel worse! And it wasn't a 'die-off reaction' or 'detoxification.' I have a very close communication with my body, and lots of experience with 'die-off' and detox. It was very clear that this product was just plain no good.
Soil organisms (SO) are spore formers, so they make make good competitors for yeast, fungus and other pathogens. This is why so many people taking soil organisms will initially get good results. However the spores are extremely difficult to kill, surviving sterilants, disinfectants, acceleration forces, heat, pressure, radiation and many antibiotics.
Soil organisms can also adapt loose genetic material and incorporate it into their cellular structure - the ramifications of which are yet unknown. Various soil organisms can also produce harmful peptides, affecting hemoglobin in the blood. It's important to keep in mind that virtually all antibiotic drugs were were initially developed from soil organisms and as antibiotics become more potent, they cause more damage to the host, not just in the immediate gut environment, but systematically as well.
In Europe, the use of soil organisms in animal feed is being strictly controlled. There are too many questions and unknowns to justify the use of soil organisms for humans and one can certainly cannot qualify them as safe at this time.
Feeling is Believing
When you initially start taking a probiotic, you should notice something! If you don't feel any different, either you have an extremely healthy digestive tract, or the product is not potent. Commonly, most of the beneficial bacteria died before you got the product, or they were never alive in the first place. If they are not alive, they can't help you!
There are literally hundreds of strains of probiotics. Most are not genetically suited to do the toughest work. When selecting a probiotic, make sure that the product has been kept refrigerated from the time it was packaged to the time you receive it. The company should guarantee the potency of their product, and should comply with GMP (Good Manufacturing Standards).
If you aspire to optimal health, or wish to improve digestion, support immune function, and fight infections, it is wise to supplement with probiotics.
Copyright 2008 - Ellen Landauer. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.
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