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Where And What Sources Can I Get Probiotics From? Darrell Miller 10/11/11
When Should Probiotics Be Taken? Darrell Miller 10/4/11
Probiotic Darrell Miller 8/7/08
Selecting the Right Probiotic is the Key to proper digestion Darrell Miller 5/5/07
Probiotics - Our Friendly Bacteria Darrell Miller 6/16/05
Power Meals - Shakes, smoothies and bars help make getting good nutrition easy. Darrell Miller 6/14/05
Lose the Gluten - everyone who suffers from food allergies Darrell Miller 6/10/05



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Where And What Sources Can I Get Probiotics From?
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Date: October 11, 2011 12:37 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Where And What Sources Can I Get Probiotics From?

Where Can I Get Probiotics From?

Probiotics are not uncommon to the ear ordinary individuals. You may have heard this term on TV and radio or have read this on a newspaper or internet article. Probiotics are considered to be live microorganisms which pose many benefits to human health especially to the digestive system. According to the World Health Organization, Probiotics: "live microorganisms which when consummed in adequate amounts have a health benefit to the host." Probiotics is a general term. The widely used types of Probiotics include Lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria and their different species and strains.

Another good Probiotic is not a bacteria but yeast called Saccharomyces boulardii. Though it may be a different microorganism, but still it offers positive health effects. These beneficial microorganisms are commonly supplied to the body by eating fermented food items such as yogurt and soy yogurt. There are also some fermented products which are specially added with live active good bacteria to improve the health of the gastric environment.

Probiotics are found to be beneficial to the body because of its ability to significantly improve the intestinal microbial balance. It acts by inhibiting harmful microorganisms and toxin - producing bacteria inside the gastrointestinal system from causing harm to the body. These microorganisms also aid the good bacteria which are naturally found inside the gastrointestinal system of the human body.

Probiotics can be acquired from food or dietary supplements. The food items which are considered to be great sources of Probiotics are yogurt, fermented milk, miso, tempeh, soy and soy products as well as certain juices. Other great sources of Probiotics include Aged cheese, Cottage cheese, beer, kefir, pickled ginger, brine– cured pickles, Sauerkraut and certain kinds of wine. Dairy products aside from fermented milk which are rich in Probiotics include acidophilus milk and Buttermilk. These dairy products are also fermented and cultured with the potent Probiotics Lactobacillus acidophilus and Streptococcus lactis, respectively. Dietary supplements of Probiotics may come in the form of capsules, tablets or powders. The good bacteria may have been naturally present from the raw material used or added during the formulation of such probiotic dietary supplement.

Keep in mind that Probiotics are different from Prebiotics (Inulin). The latter are indigestible food ingredients which can relatively stimulate the growth and activity of the normal bacterial flora of the intestines. When these two are combined, they form a symbiotic effect by working hand in hand with each other.

Good Bacterial

Good bacteria are normally present inside our gut system. However, with the effect of certain health conditions and poor lifestyle, these friendly and beneficial microorganisms may be depleted and not reinforced with new healthy ones immediately. This normal bacterial flora of the digestive system is important for maintaining the health of the digestive system thereby improving the general health of the person. These good bacteria are also helpful in inhibiting and regulating the growth of harmful microorganisms found in the digestive system. Instances which can significantly decrease the number of good bacteria in the gut include antibiotic therapy, food poisoning, alcohol intake, stress and poor diet.

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=2496)


When Should Probiotics Be Taken?
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Date: October 04, 2011 02:00 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: When Should Probiotics Be Taken?

Probiotics are digestive bacteria which are naturally present in the gastric environment. This type of bacteria is necessary for the proper digestion of food as well as absorption of nutrients. Clinical studies have shown that the digestive tract must contain at least 10 to 15 % good bacteria to have a healthy digestion. In addition, trace amount of bad bacteria is also present inside the digestive tract. This is also important for digestion because these bacteria produce essential enzymes that aid digestion and absorption.

The most popular probiotics is called Lactobacillus acidophilus. This kind of bacteria produces lactic acid inside the stomach when they reproduce. Lactic acid increases the acidity of the gastric environment thus enhancing digestion. The acidity of the digestive tract also helps protect the stomach and intestines from overgrowth of harmful microorganisms such as yeasts, spores, molds and bacteria such as Escherichia coli and Salmonella.

The population of good bacteria in the digestive tract is depleted when the individual is on antibiotic therapy or under prolonged stress. Antibiotics are non – selective. This means that they do not only kill the harmful microorganisms but also the good ones. Good thing probiotics can be obtained from the diet such as yogurt, Buttermilk, kefir and other fermented products. In addition, probiotics can also be provided by supplements. Therefore, when the person is to have an antibiotic therapy, the physician usually prescribes probiotic supplement to replenish the digestive tract with the killed good bacteria.

Moreover, if probiotics are prescribed, another form of supplement may also be recommended to aid the activity of probiotic supplements. These are called prebiotics which are considered to be fibers, either soluble or insoluble. These prebiotics does not increase the number of good bacteria in the digestive tract. Prebiotics serve as food for good bacteria thus making them healthy and strong against bad bacteria. Sources of prebiotics include fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains.

Other health benefits of probiotics are that it can enhance the health of the immune system and boost the intestinal barrier function. Probiotics also lessen the development of allergies to food and drugs. For lactose – intolerant individuals, yogurts with live and active cultures of lactobacillus acidophilus are recommended to relieve its disturbing symptoms. In addition, probiotics also has an anti – diarrheal property and at the same time helps in the regulation of normal bowel movement.

A good probiotic supplement must have at least ten million live bacteria. Experts also stressed that the good bacteria contained in a supplement must be that of the Lactobacillus strains. This family of bacteria is the only considered group of good bacteria which is strong enough to reach the intestines, bypassing the acidic environment of the stomach. Another helpful tip on what a good probiotic supplement must be is that the product must be guaranteed organic. Organic probiotics ensure that the bacteria are in its natural and live state and have not been destroyed with heat and strong chemicals during processes. Experts also suggest that you must choose those probiotic supplements in which the source is from organic vegetables.

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Probiotic
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Date: August 07, 2008 06:03 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Probiotic

Probiotics are dietary supplements containing potentially beneficial bacteria for the small and large intestines. Probiotics, which means "for life", have been used for centuries as natural components in health-promoting foods. This beneficial bacterium is important in recolonizing the intestinal tract with good bacteria during and after antibiotic use as well as supporting overall health and wellness.

Probiotics are not the same thing as prebiotics which are non-digestible food ingredients that selectively stimulate the growth and/or activity of beneficial microorganisms already in the human colon. Probiotics are live microorganisms (in most cases, bacteria) that are similar to beneficial microorganisms found in the human gut. The use of good probiotics is important in healing many chronic gastrointestinal problems that are so often associated in those with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and IBS.

One study performed in a 4-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of 60 individuals with IBS, probiotics treatment with lactobacilli showed markedly beneficial to slowing down the bowels and reversing IBS. Two Scientific studies over the last 50 years show that probiotic organisms can improve the nutritional quality of foods, produce antibiotics, anti-carcinogens, and substances that break down and recycle toxins for their human host.

Historically, people used fermented foods like yogurt and sauerkraut both as food preservatives to limit spoilage, and to support their intestinal and overall health. Fermented foods such as sauerkraut also contain probiotics. Today probiotic bacteria such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are added by food manufacturers to fermented foodstuffs to improve their nutritional value.

There are, however, other foods that may contain added probiotics, such as sour cream, fruit juices and Buttermilk. Food ingredient suppliers are now making it easier to add probiotics and prebiotics to foods and beverages by offering blends of synbiotics with the right proportion of pro- and prebiotics to obtain the desired beneficial health effects, as well as improved survival of the live bacterium strains.

Beneficial bacteria thrive and work with your digestive tract and immune system, along with Essential Fatty Acids, to protect you against illness and disease. It is also important to have a healthy balance of beneficial microbes to avoid sickness and disease and to keep your body stay nutritionally sound. Probiotic beneficial bacteria are involved in every aspect of your health. Along with beneficial bacteria, we show how supplements such as Essential Fatty Acids and Green foods provide the foundation for good health and provide a nutritional base for probiotics to grow and flourish in the body.

The most common form for probiotics are dairy products and fortified foods. Probiotics are products aimed at delivering living bacterial cells to the gut ecosystem of humans and other animals, whereas prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates delivered in food to the large bowel to provide fermentable substrates for the friendly bacteria to grow and thrive.

Probiotics are available to consumers mainly in the form of dietary supplements and foods. Because candida infection is very common due to overuse of antibiotics, several studies suggest that probiotics may be effective at preventing candida overgrowth as well as reversing it; candida is a good target pathogen for future probiotic research.

Although they are thought to be essential for health, because they can sustain themselves in the body under normal circumstances, there is no recommended daily intake of probiotics. By consuming foods with probiotics, you can increase the number of healthy bacteria, boost your immunity, and promote a healthy digestive system.

If you can not eat the foods that contain friendly bacteria, there are always probiotic supplements available from your local health food store. As always, it is best to check with your doctor or health care provider before starting any new supplements with medications. Probiotic formulas are a safe and effective means to deliver friendly bacteria to where it is needed, the colon.



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Vitanet ®, LLC

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Selecting the Right Probiotic is the Key to proper digestion
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Date: May 05, 2007 01:16 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Selecting the Right Probiotic is the Key to proper digestion

Selecting the Right Probiotic is the Key

 

Do you ever think about what goes into your body each day? You should. One of the key to feeling good and being healthy s eating nutritious food and making sure our gastrointestinal (GI) tract has the tools it needs to optimally digest and absorb nutrients. The GI tract includes the stomach and intestines, which work to digest foods and eliminate waste.

A variety of “good” intestinal bacteria helps to keep the digestive system running. These “good” bacteria are called probiotic bacteria, or probiotics. Probiotics digest food, process waste, and keep the “bad” bacteria – which have the potential to cause disease and illness – in check.

This issue of Ask the Doctor will look at the probiotic bacteria that play an important role in maintaining our health and wellness: we need them, what they can do for us, and how to make sure we are getting enough. Also, we will talk about an exciting process that truly delivers probiotic bacteria taken in nutritional supplements. Encapsulated in a pearl-like sphere, they survive transport to the intestines, set up house, and exert their beneficial effects. As we will see, probiotic supplementation can help prevent and treat many different illnesses, unless the beneficial bacteria reach the intestines alive and active, the supplement is worthless.

 

Q. I thought bacteria were bad. How can bacteria be good for us?

A. Some kinds of bacteria do cause illnesses and disease in humans. “Strep” throat is an example of an illness caused by bacteria.

However, the majority of bacteria do not cause disease. In fact, there are types of bacteria that are actually beneficial. “Good” bacteria, known as probiotic bacteria, are used in the manufacturing of food and beverages. Some examples of foods that have probiotic food ingredients are Buttermilk, yogurt, cheese, sausage, and acidophilus milk.

These same kinds of probiotic bacteria are present in our intestines and help to keep the digestive system running by digesting food and processing waste.

 

Q. What are probiotics?

A. Probiotics are live bacteria that are non-toxic and do not cause disease (non-pathogenic).

Some of the best-understood probiotic bacteria include members of the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium groups. Because of the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium’s ability to break down lactose, these probiotic bacteria are also known as lactic acid bacteria. Both of these types of probiotic bacteria are well studied and are available in both food and dietary supplements.

 

Q. Is there a difference between the probiotic bacteria that is found in yogurt, and in nutritional supplements?

A. Actually, the bacteria that are in yogurt, our intestine, and most natural supplements are the same types of probiotic bacteria, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacteria longum. Because of this, these bacteria are referred in a generic sense as probiotics. So, the term probiotics may refer to the “good” bacteria that are present in food or that live in our intestine, or that are part of a natural supplement.

 

Q. Where do these probiotic bacteria come from?

A. As recently as the middle of the last century, bacteria found naturally in food ingredients were used to make a fermented food product. For example, the example, the lactic acid bacteria found naturally in milk were used to make cheese. This was known as wild fermentation.

Wild fermentations are no longer used. Today, the probiotic bacteria used in food and natural supplements are harvested via a highly controlled fermentation process. This process results in high numbers of bacteria and ensures quality and purity of the bacteria.

 

Q. Why are probiotic bacteria important for digestive health?

A. Normal microflora (the term commonly used for intestinal bacteria) is associated with good health. An imbalance in this natural microflora (when the beneficial probiotics are outnumbered by the harmful bacteria) is frequently associated with various disease states such as yeast infections and colon cancer.

Eating foods or taking a nutritional supplement containing probiotic bacteria can help support and modify the composition of the large intestine microflora. Microflora of the large intestine assist digestion through fermentation (by making the intestines more inhospitable to invading bacteria species), protection against disease-causing bacteria, and stimulation of the immune system.

The probiotics, Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria, occupy a central role in the intestinal and provide health benefits.

 

Q. How do probiotic bacteria help with digestion?

A. Lactose is an important sugar that is converted to lactic acid by lactic acid bacteria. Lactose intolerance results from an inability to digest lactose, due to the failure of small intestine mucosal cells to produce lactase, an enzyme needed to digest lactose. This often results because of genetics, gastrointestinal disease, or because of the decline in the amount of intestinal lactase levels associated with aging. Lactase deficient people accumulate non-absorbed lactose in the gastrointestinal tract, which draws water and electrolytes into the gut and speeds waste through the intestines, leading to bloating, cramping, and diarrhea.

Approximately 50 million people in the United States have partial to complete lactose intolerance. The following chart illustrates the racial break down of lactose intolerance in this country.

Prevalence of Lactose Intolerance in the U.S.

95% of Native Americans

90% of Asian Americans

70% of African Americans

60% of Jewish Americans

50% of Mexican Americans

Less than 25% of Caucasian Americans (non-Jewish, non-Hispanic)

Lactic acid bacteria have been shown to help the breakdown of lactose, specifically by enhancing the activity of lactase (beta galactosidase), which improves lactose digestion and tolerance. Furthermore, in a randomized, controlled clinical trial, Bifidobacteria longum was shown to assist in the breakdown of lactose and relieve the symptoms of lactose intolerance (flatulence) in people with lactose intolerance.

 

Q. What is the difference between digestive enzymes and probiotics? Can they be taken together?

A. Digestive enzymes, such as protease, amalyse, and lipase, act upon food, breaking it down into simpler components that can be used by the body for energy. Without enzymes, digestion could not take place. Therefore, the food that we eat could not be absorbed and utilized by our bodies.

Probiotics help the enzymes to digest food and process waste. In essence, probiotic bacteria and enzymes work together to ensure that the digestive tract is running smoothly. When taken together, enzymes assure greater levels of digestion absorption of your food, and probiotic bacteria aid the enzymes in digestion and keep problems in check.

 

Q. Is helping to ensure a healthy digestive system the only use for probiotics?

A. Absolutely not! Probiotic bacteria, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, have been found to help prevent vaginal yeast infections in women that suffer from these reoccurring infections.

Approximately 35% of vaginal infections are caused by the yeast. Candida albicans, Candida, is a fungus that is a component of the normal gastrointestinal microflora. However, Candida must not be allowed to increase in numbers. An overgrowth is associated with adverse health effects like vaginal infections, oral thrush, or even serious systematic yeast infections. Probiotics have been shown to keep levels of Candida in check.

Probiotic bacteria have also been demonstrated to have anti-cancer properties. In baa clinical study, colon cancer patients given Lactobacillus acidophilus fermented milk showed a significant increase in numbers of intestinal Lactobacilli and a decrease in risk factors associated with colon cancer.

Patients suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases, such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease can benefit from probiotic bacteria supplementation. Studies have shown that probiotic bacteria assist in maintaining remission in ulcerative colitis and preventing reoccurrence of Crohn’s disease. Manipulating the intestinal flora may prove to be more effective and better tolerated than the drugs that are conventionally given to treat these diseases. I one study, Lactobacillus acidophilus was found to improve the intestinal barrier and clinical status in children suffering from Crohn’s disease.

Probiotics supplementation can also improve and prevent skin disease, such as eczema. Studies have shown that probiotic bacteria can actually control inflammation associated with skin conditions. In one study, infants with eczema who were given probiotic-supplemented formulas showed a significant improvement in skin condition.

The chart below summarizes some of the diseases and conditions that probiotic bacteria can help prevent and/or improve.

Disease

Benefits of Probiotic Supplement

Vaginal yeast infections

Prevents vaginal yeast infections in women.

Colon Cancer

Decreases risk factors associated with colon cancer.

Crohn’s Disease

Found to improve the intestinal barrier in patients with Crohn’s disease.

Ulcerative Colitis

Helps to maintain disease remission in ulcerative colitis patients.

Eczema

Counteracts inflammatory responses outside the intestinal tract by preventing diseases such as eczema and dermatitis.

 

Q. How often should probiotics be taken to ensure optimal support of the digestion system?

A. Probiotic bacteria do not permanently colonize in the body. They need to be replenished by the consumption of foods containing probiotic bacteria or by taking a probiotic natural supplement. Whatever form you choose to replenish the intestinal probiotics, they need to be ingested daily for their health-promoting effects to continue.

 

Q. If I take a probiotic nutritional supplement, how many bacteria should a good quality supplement contain?

A. The critical factor is not how many bacteria that a supplement contains, but rather how many bacteria reach the intestines healthy, vigorous, and ready to work.

A good quality supplement will deliver at least 3 billion living, healthy probiotic bacteria per dose to your intestines. The bacteria in the probiotic natural supplement should be a mixture of both Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria.

Again, the critical key to a good quality probiotic supplement is that the bacteria must be alive to work. Only living probiotic bacteria can colonize in the intestines. A good quality probiotic nutritional supplement will have GUARANTEED levels of live bacteria at the point of consumption. Inferior brands will merely state levels of live bacteria at the point of manufacture.

Recently, a private laboratory tested various probiotic nutritional supplements in the marketplace, including one utilizing a new process that encapsulates the bacteria in a spherical, pearl-like coating. Each of these supplements were best-selling brands, two of them were enteric coated, and all had label guarantees about potency. The lab counted the levels claimed by each manufacturer.

 

Q. Then how do I know I am getting what I pay for?

A. First, look for a product that has a “use by” date or an “expiration” date clearly stated on the package.

It is also important to look for a probiotic supplement that does not require refrigeration. Probiotic supplements that require refrigeration often have been subjected to warm temperatures during shipment and storage that will inevitably kill off some or all of the bacteria.

It is also important that the product label guarantees live bacteria at the time of purchase, not at the time of shipment or manufacturing. However, from the laboratory test discussed, we see that sometimes these written guarantees are not worth the paper they are written on. There is one scientifically validated process that truly delivers live and vigorous bacteria to the intestine. This process suspends the probiotic bacteria in a moist paste and immediately seals the bacteria in a perfectly seamless, spherical, gelatin ball. This bacterial paste is completely protected from air and dryness so the bacteria are alive until the specialized gelatin dissolves – in the intestines.

 

Q. Why is it important to dissolve only in the intestine?

A. Lactic acid bacteria are not very resistant to the acids of the stomach. The harsh environment of the stomach destroys the majority of these bacteria.

This pearly-like coating technology protects bacteria from the stomach acid. The sphere is specially developed to only dissolve in the intestines. Enteric coating is not enough as it does nothing to protect the bacteria while they wait for purchase on the shelf.

 

Q. What does this proprietary coating technology mean to me?

A. This specialized process is an expensive processing step, but it has many advantages to you.

The pearl-shaped spheres actually “seal” the bacteria in the capsule, which protects them from air. Probiotic bacteria are anaerobic, meaning they do not require oxygen to live. In fact, the presence of oxygen can actually injure or kill probiotic bacteria. In addition, the special coating’s ability to seal the bacteria in the capsule stimulates the need for the nutritional supplement to be refrigerated – though they can be kept in the refrigerator, if desired.

By protecting the bacteria on the shelf and in the stomach, the probiotic bacteria successfully reach the intestine. As a result, there will be a greater number of healthy, intact bacteria that can colonize in the intestine.

 

Conclusion

Many health care practitioners believe all health issues are related in some way to the process of digestion. Probiotics play a crucial role in improving our digestive health, which, in turn, is interconnected to every single function in our bodies.

Taking a probiotic supplement is an excellent way to replenish the good bacteria in your intestinal microflora. A quality probiotic product contains two different types of bacteria from Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria species with at least one billion live bacteria per dose.

But how do you know the bacteria re still alive? Look at the package. If there is no fate stamp, put it down. If it says the company guarantees there was a certain number alive at the time of manufacture, put it down. Tat means that the company is not willing to claim the bacteria are alive when delivered to the target site, the intestine. If the product must be constantly refrigerated, put it down. How do you know it didn’t sit in a truck for two days, or was in a warehouse before it was shipped to the health food store?

Find a probiotic that says the bacteria are guaranteed to be alive in the numbers stated on the label until the printed on the package. Find a product using unique, cutting edge science to deliver the probiotic bacteria in a form that uses spherical, sealed, triple coating to protect the bacteria. That company has gone to extra time and expense to make sure you reap the benefits that probiotics can offer.

 



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Support Proper digestion with Probiotics at Vitanet

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Probiotics - Our Friendly Bacteria
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Date: June 16, 2005 10:51 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Probiotics - Our Friendly Bacteria

Probiotics Our Friendly Bacteria

An estimated 10 quadrillion bacteria make their home in the average digestive system. Fortunately, less than one percent of the 400 different species found in the intestine are potentially harmful. The majority of intestinal flora are friendly bacteria, otherwise known as probiotics. These probiotic bacteria support good health by limiting the growth of harmful bacteria, promoting good digestion and increasing resistance to infection.*1

Probiotic bacteria are completely non-toxic. In fact, friendly bacteria have been used safely and effectively for more than 8,000 years, proving their value to human health.*2  Most often, probiotics have been consumed as part of  cultured foods, such as acidophilus milk, yogurt, soy tempeh, and idli (cultured wheat). The friendly bacteria in these foods, specifically Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, and Bifidobacterium bifidum, multiply in the warm, moist environment of the human body by feeding on the carbohydrates and protein in the digestive tract, then establish colonies along the intestinal wall.

Beneficial Roles of Probiotics

Lactobacillus acidophilus and other friendly bacteria play many important roles in maintaining good health.* According to experts, regular consumption of probiotics is the best way to maintain healthy intestinal flora.*3, 4 Lactobacilli species do not survive very long in the colon, so bacteria colonies need to be routinely replenished.*

Healthy digestion:

In addition to producing numerous vitamins, probiotics support healthy digestion.*  Part of the reason fermented foods are healthful is that some of the proteins, fats and carbohydrates are partially digested by the bacteria, which increases overall digestibility and nutritional value of the food.*5, 6

Lactose intolerant individuals may gain even more benefits from probiotics. Lactobacilli bacteria ferment as much as half of the lactose in milk—the part of milk that results in the symptoms of bloating, cramps and gas in lactose intolerant individuals—by converting it to lactic acid. Consequently, people with lactose intolerance report fewer digestive problems with cultured dairy foods compared to fresh milk.*5, 7

The nutritional profile of foods is improved after being cultured with probiotics. Levels of several B vitamins, including vitamins B1, B2, B6 and B12, niacin, folic acid and pantothenic acid are higher in fermented foods, such as yogurt, cheese, kefir and Buttermilk.*5  Fermentation also boosts the digestibility of soy foods.*8

Inhibiting bacterial growth:

Probiotics act as natural antibiotics, slowing the growth of harmful bacteria.*5, 6 These friendly bacteria produce substances, including lactic acid, acetic acid, benzoic acid, hydrogen peroxide and natural antibiotics, which limit the reproduction of certain disease-causing bacteria.*9

Another way that probiotic bacteria maintain a healthy digestive tract is by competing with harmful bacteria in the intestine. When the intestine is full of large colonies of beneficial bacteria, disease-causing bacteria are simply not able to multiply into harmful numbers because there are no available attachment sites on the intestinal wall.* This is one of the ways L. acidophilus inhibits the growth of Candida albicans, coliform (e. coli) bacteria and salmonella.*3, 4, 10, 11

Diarrhea can have many causes, but it always has the same result for the bacteria living in the intestine—it flushes them out, leaving the body vulnerable to the growth of opportunistic bacteria. It is important to replenish the body with probiotics during and after a bout of diarrhea.* Probiotic bacteria can also help keep the colon healthy when traveling.*4

Lactobacilli are one of the primary bacteria found in normal vaginal flora, and their presence is believed to inhibit the overgrowth of harmful bacteria, such as Candida. Lactobacillus acidophilus cultures are a popular folk remedy for vaginal health.*4, 10

Recolonization After Antibiotic Use:

Antibiotics, given to treat bacterial infections, ironically can contribute to unhealthy bacteria growth. Antibiotics destroy bacteria, the good along with the bad, leaving the intestine without its normal, healthful flora. In this compromised state, disease-causing bacteria can multiply unchecked by friendly bacteria.*12 When ingested during and following antibiotic usage, L. acidophilus rapidly restores normal flora, shortening the time that undesirable organisms remain in the gut.*3, 12 Bifidobacterium bifidum can also help normalize the intestinal flora after using antibiotics.*10  

Producing the Best Probiotics

Fermenting foods with lactobacilli has been a time-honored method for both preserving and enhancing foods.  Before refrigeration, fermentation was a valuable way to preserve food safety, and it remains in common usage today.

Nature’s Life uses the same basic principles developed and perfected by prehistoric nomadic peoples to produce Lactobacillus acidophilus products; with the exception that we use modern, high-volume equipment. These improvements, along with trained personnel, scientific methods and quality assurance practices, ensures that every batch meets our high standards of quality.

Our lactobacilli are cultured on nutrient-dense food concentrates, such as soy protein, green peas or non-fat milk. We add natural apple juice, pasteurized clover honey, strawberries, carrot juice or maltodextrin for flavor and to provide carbohydrates for the micro-organisms, plus we use only pasteurized water.

Our growth medium has a broad range of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, amino acids, essential fatty acids, organic acids and naturally occurring plant phytonutrients such as flavonoids and carotenoids with beneficial antioxidant properties. The temperature and moisture are carefully controlled during the several days needed for the bacteria to multiply to peak potency.

At the peak of potency, Nature’s Life Liquid Acidophilus culture is poured directly into sanitized 16 oz. glass bottles and immediately refrigerated at 36°F to maintain peak potency. These liquid products are the most bioactive of all forms of acidophilus because they are dormant, rather than frozen.

For our freeze-dried powders and capsules, the warm liquid culture is immediately poured into containers, sealed and refrigerated. After cooling, the liquid is poured into trays and instantly freeze-dried. The frozen lactobacillus is then processed through a vacuum freezer to lower the moisture level to an absolute minimum. This freeze-dried product is packaged as either powder or capsules. When swallowed, the microorganisms will rehydrate and begin colonizing the gastrointestinal tract with friendly bacteria.

Nature’s Life acidophilus is not filtered, centrifuged or otherwise concentrated or separated from its growth medium to artificially obtain higher concentrations of bacteria per gram or capsule. Centrifuging may damage the lactobacillus by altering the natural clumping, chaining and branching of bacteria cells.*

Nature’s Life probiotic products retain all the benefits of the nutrient-rich growth medium. All the valuable by-products of the bacteria’s metabolism remain in the final product, including B-vitamins, enzymes, organic  acids, antibodies and even naturally occurring antibiotics. The conclusion of experts is that products which are centrifuged or filtered are incomplete.13 14

Quality You Can Trust

Nature’s Life invests significant resources in perfecting the production of high quality Lactobacillus acidophilus cultures. You benefit from our knowledge and experience every time you choose our supplements.

Nature’s Life lactobacillus cultures are manufactured with rigorous specifications using state-of-the-art equipment. All equipment and containers are sanitized to ensure that no contaminants or unfriendly pathogenic bacteria corrupt the quality of the L. acidophilus. The large capacity fermentation tanks and freeze dryers maintain consistency in each batch.

Nature’s Life Lactobacillus acidophilus meets or exceeds all standards developed by industry associations and government regulations. These standards, established to determine the quality of the finished product, are:

  • Identification of each species based on approved microbiology methods.

  • Confirmation of bacteria potency counts based on standardized testing methods.

  • The use of Good Manufacturing Practices to ensure each batch of product is consistently produced to standards.

  • Potency claims are made on the front panel and certified to be viable through a date printed on the side panel.

All of Nature’s Life Lactobacillus acidophilus products meet the acid test for effectiveness:

  • Enough bacteria survive the high acidity of the stomach and retain their viability and effectiveness.

  • The organisms multiply rapidly in the intestine providing all the benefits of these friendly bacteria.

  • The bacteria effectively inhibit the growth of undesirable bacteria.

 

Using Nature’s Life Probiotics

Nature’s Life probiotics, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. bulgaricus and Bifidobacterium bifidum, can survive in the stomach for at least an hour.*15 Nature’s Life recommends taking probiotics either on an empty stomach or with food, however the presence of food can help the organisms stay alive longer.16

 Liquid acidophilus should be treated as a perishable product, since it contains live, active organisms. Like yogurt or milk, acidophilus should be refrigerated and used within a short period of time. Contact Nature’s Life for a recipe on how to make your own soy-based, milk-free yogurt.

References:

  1. Roberfroid MB, Bornet F, Bouley C, et al: Colonic microflora: Nutrition and Health.

  2. Rosell, J.M, Can Med Assoc J, 1932; 26:341.

  3. Alm, L. The effect of Lactobacillus acidophilus administration upon the survival of Salmonella in randomly selected human carriers. Prog Food Nutr Sci, 1983; 7:13-17.

  4. Hilton, E., et al. Ingestion of yogurt containing Lactobacillus acidophilus as prophylaxis for candidal vaginitis. Ann Int Med 1992;116:353-7.

  5. Friend, B.A. et al. Nutritional and therapeutic aspects of Lactobacilli. J of Appl Nutr, 1984; 36(2):125-153.

  6. Fernandes, C.F., et al. Therapeutic role of dietary Lactobacilli and Lactobacillus fermented dairy products. Fed of Eur Microbiol Rev, 1987; 46:343-356.

  7. Gorbach SL: Lactic acid bacteria and human health. Ann Med 1990;22:37-41.

  8. Hutchins AM, Slavin JL, and Lampe JW: Urinary isoflavonoid phytoestrogen and lignan excretion after consumption of fermented and unfermented soy products. J Am Diet Assoc 1995;95:545-551.

  9. Shahani, K.M., et al. Natural antibiotic activity of Lactobacillus acidophilus and bulgaricus, Cult Dairy Prod J, 1976; 11(4):14-7.

  10. Elmer GW, Surawicz CM, and McFarland LV: Biotherapeutic agents. A neglected modality for the treatment and prevention of selected intestinal and vaginal infections. (review) JAMA 1996;275(11):870-876.

  11. Prajapati, J., et al. Nutritional and therapeutic benefits of a blended spray-dried acidophilus preparation. Cult Dairy Prod J, 1986; 21(2):16-21.

  12. Fernandes, C.F., Shanhani, K.M., Amer, M.A., Control of diarrhea by Lactobacilli, J Appl Nutr, 1988; 40(1):32-43.

  13. Hansen, R., New starter cultures with 100-200 billion cells, North European Dairy J, 1980; 3:62:9.

  14. Klaenhammer, T.R., Microbiological considerations in selection and preparation of Lactobacillus strains for use as dietary adjuncts, J Dairy Sci, 1982; 65:1339-49.

  15. Kurmann, J.A., Rasic, J.L., The health potential of products containing bifidobacteria. Chapter 6 in: Properties of Fermented Milks, Elsevier Science Publishers, Barking, Essex, England, 1991.

  16. Petterson, L., et al, Survival of Lactobacillus acidophilus NCDO 1748 in the human gastrointestinal tract. XV Symposium, Swedish Nutrition Foundation, 1983.

  17. Fuller, R. Probiotics in man and animal. J Appl Bact, 1989; 66:365-78.

  18. Gilliland, S.E., and Speck, M.L., Instability of Lactobacillus acidophilus in yogurt. J Dairy Sci, 1977; 60:1394-98.

  19. Alm, L., The...effects of various cultures - an overview, Chapter 3 in: Properties of Fermented Milks, Elsevier Science Publishers, Barking, Essex, England, 1991.



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Power Meals - Shakes, smoothies and bars help make getting good nutrition easy.
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Date: June 14, 2005 08:28 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Power Meals - Shakes, smoothies and bars help make getting good nutrition easy.

Power Meals

by Phyllis D. Light, RH Energy Times, March 12, 2004

Choices, choices, choices: For convenience, nutrition and either low-calorie or low-carb dieting, you now have an enviable range of choices. Shakes, smoothies and bars help make getting good nutrition easy.

Whatever your inclination, drinks and bars offer a shortcut to daily nutrition without cooking. And whether you use them as meal replacements, diet aids or healthy snacks, these power meals fill you up without filling you out.

That's the main reason these items have grown in popularity in natural food stores among the nutritionally knowledgeable searching for healthier alternatives to fast food.

No matter how hectic your day, you have no excuses anymore for missing your daily required antioxidants and minerals. Either select a bar suited to your taste, or put your blender or food processor to work in creating drinks that use fresh fruits and veggies, yogurt, low-fat milk or ice and protein powders for maximum nutritional output.

Quality note: always be sure to use organic foods for the best nutritional content, flavor and taste.

Powerful Nutrition

Prepared protein shake mixes and bars are ideal for losing weight, expanding personal energy or building muscle. Protein mixes are available in an assortment of flavors that are generally high in amino acids (protein building blocks) and low in carbohydrates. Of course if you are on a low-carb diet, forsake putting fruits and vegetables in your shakes; these items are too high in carbohydrates.

What's more, bars not only provide a wealth of different tastes, but different bars are also tailored to different needs-whether you're seeking to lose weight, gain muscle or replace a meal, there's a bar out there just for you.

If you use power shakes as meal replacements and you are on a low-carbohydrate diet, make sure the drink supplies plenty of protein and few carbohydrates. If you use either shakes or bars to replace one or more meals during the day, take a fiber supplement in addition. Fiber, which contains no calories, helps speed food through your digestive tract and may lower your risk of heart disease and cancer (Lancet 5/2/03).

And remember: powders and bars should also be low in sugars and saturated fats. The weight-loss benefit: If you drink high-protein shakes or eat bars that taste good and leave you feeling satisfied, you'll have a better chance of sticking to your diet long enough to lose a significant amount of weight.

Drink to Lose

Research into weight loss has established protein shakes and bars as reliable diet aids. A study of 100 dieters between the age of 35 and 65 found that people who drank a daily soy protein shake lost more than 14 pounds each in three months (Eur J Clin Nutr 2003; 57:514). And in a study reported in the Journal of American Dietetic Association (3/01), folks who had a protein shake in place of one daily meal lost almost twice as much weight over 12 weeks than those who ate their regular food with the same amount of calories.

Drinking your breakfast in the form of a protein shake can both increase your metabolism and help curb your appetite for the rest of the day.

Researchers at Harvard University found that metabolism rose faster after eating a high-protein breakfast and that blood-sugar levels stayed high for about six hours after the meal (AHA Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and and Prevention, 3/6/03). In comparison, when a sugary breakfast is consumed, blood-sugar levels rise quickly but fall rapidly, causing fatigue, tiredness and sleepiness.

Protein shakes are especially effective when you are on a weight-loss plateau, trying to lose those last few tenacious pounds. (But shakes, smoothies and bars should not be your only meals of the day. Eat at least one low-calorie meal daily to supply nutrients that may not be in your shakes or bars.)

Smoothie Operator

Made with fruits and vegetables, smoothies are a tasty way of getting extra amounts of nutrients and soluble fiber. Using low-fat milk, yogurt, Buttermilk or kefir, plus ice, creates a tempting and wholesome blend that lights up the taste buds. Powdered mixes can be used for added protein.

Fruits and vegetables in your smoothies not only fill you up on relatively few calories, but they boost your energy and supply plenty of bioflavonoids (healthy, natural chemicals from plants), antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.

The fiber in smoothies can help reduce cholesterol, relieve constipation and aid in the prevention of high blood pressure. For reduced calories and added heart health benefits, low-fat or no-fat milk products can be used in place of cream or regular milk in most recipes. For the best taste sensation, combine sour and sweet fruits together.

Adding raw fruits and vegetables to smoothies provides natural enzymes that help with digestion and act as catalysts in hundreds of chemical reactions throughout the body. (You can also take enzymes in supplemental form.) Enzymes are not present in cooked foods since the heat of cooking destroys them.

Nutrition for Kids

If you have trouble getting your children to eat their fruits and vegetables, try giving them smoothies. Children can't resist these naturally sweet and healthy creations.

According to Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions (New Trends Publishing), smoothies should be "high in quality, contain healthy fats, be naturally sweet, and contain fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables."

Fallon also believes children should consume what are called lacto-fermented foods, including yogurt and kefir, which are aged to contain the kinds of friendly bacteria that normally live within our digestive tracts. For kids, Fallon also encourages the use of cream or cultured milk to ensure adequate fat and calcium, so important for the development of growing bodies.

Smoothies are an interactive drink as far as children are concerned, since they love to help blend them. For extra nutrition power, add nutritional yeast, nut butters or ground flaxseeds. These supply additional vitamins and minerals, along with healthy fats. You can also add silken tofu to bump up the protein content. If your child is lactose intolerant, try mixing smoothies with rice milk, soy milk or juice.

Bars Designed With A Woman's Needs in Mind

The modern woman is a multitasking wonder, constantly juggling work and home responsibilities. So it's no wonder that bars aimed at women are among the most popular bars there are. Many women, in eyeing the bathroom scale, shortchange themselves of the nutrients they need. That's why a woman's bar needs to provide minerals like calcium, a bone-building necessity.

Women also need to ensure that a bar contains enough of the B vitamins, particularly folate. This is especially true if a woman is pregnant, or wants to be: Folate is crucial in helping to prevent neural tube birth defects.

Folate also teams up with two other B vitamins, B6 and B12, to control homocysteine. This protein metabolism byproduct, when present in excessive amounts, is associated with heart disease.

Another popular ingredient in women's bars is soy, which has been duly recognized for its heart benefits. Studies also indicate that soy may help keep bones strong. (Not to mention the fact that the moisture soy holds helps make a bar's texture that much more appealing!)

The Protein Game

If you are unsure about how much protein you need each day, you are not alone. Are you getting too much, not enough, or just enough? Most people need between 45 and 60 grams of protein daily, and most protein shakes contain about 14 and 20 grams of protein per serving (check your labels). No matter what your nutritional needs are, you may find an answer in a smoothie, shake or bar. When it comes to power nutrition, tasting is believing!



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Lose the Gluten - everyone who suffers from food allergies
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Date: June 10, 2005 10:20 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Lose the Gluten - everyone who suffers from food allergies

Lose the Gluten by Phyllis D. Light, RH Energy Times, October 14, 2004

Are you a glutton for gluten, the sticky protein found in bagels and many other breads? Unfortunately, not everyone can enjoy the taste of fresh-baked bread because it contains this natural substance that can cause allergic reaction or intolerance in susceptible folks.

And while not everyone who suffers from food allergies or intolerances has a problem with gluten, other foods that can cause distress include items like watermelon, fish or even the benign-seeming peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Still, with a little guidance, even if you have an allergy or two, you can enjoy meals and reduce food-related difficulties when you make food choices wisely.

According to the Food and Drug Administration, more than one in 50 adults and one in 12 children in the US suffer food allergies. But the problem may be even larger. Researchers believe even more of us have food allergies and don't know it: many food allergies and intolerances may be mistaken for irritable bowel syndrome or conditions like chronic fatigue syndrome.

Unhappy Digestion

The involvement of the immune system in an allergy represents the dividing line between intolerance and allergy. A food allergy strikes when the immune system attacks food ingredients as though they were threatening substances. Usually, proteins trigger these physiological alarms. The most common food allergens include wheat, soy, peanuts, shellfish, eggs, fish, tree nuts, milk and watermelon. Fortunately, many children who suffer allergies outgrow them as their bodies mature.

Signs of a food allergy may include a rash, hives, nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, itchy skin, shortness of breath, chest pain, swelling of the airways and a condition called anaphylactic shock, a serious occurrence that can cut off breathing and requires immediate medical help.

If you believe you have a food allergy, see your health practitioner. If you have reasons to suspect an allergy to a particular food, avoid it altogether.

Intolerance Versus Allergy

Food intolerances are more common than allergies. They happen when food irritates the digestive system or offers substances that the digestive tract cannot break down. A food intolerance, however, does not provoke the immune system into an attack. The most common foods that cause intolerance are wheat, rye and barley; they all contain gluten.

Figuring out an intolerance generally requires adding and eliminating foods to gauge your response. Signs can include nausea, stomach pain, gas, cramps, bloating, vomiting, heartburn, diarrhea, headaches and irritability or nervousness. If you suspect you have a food intolerance, keep a food diary-recording what you eat and how you feel afterwards.

In addition, an elimination diet, wherein you avoid certain foods and track your responses, can help determine food intolerances. After you have dropped certain foods from your diet, reintroduce them, one at a time, until you eat a food that causes a return of your problems. These foods should then be permanently avoided.

Inflamed Intestines

Celiac sprue is a particularly severe inflammatory response to wheat or other grains containing gluten. According to the National Science Foundation, one in every 200 Americans suffers from this often misdiagnosed condition. That's more than a million of us!

If left untreated, celiac sprue can cause anemia, contribute to osteoporosis by limiting calcium absorption and increase the risk for intestinal cancer. Signs include headaches, weight loss, nutritional deficiencies, fatigue and neurological symptoms. The only treatment is to avoid all grains that contain gluten.

According to researchers in England, celiac sprue is often mistaken for chronic fatigue syndrome, type 1 diabetes or irritable bowel syndrome and can result in infertility (Med J Austral 2004 May 17; 180(10):524-6). Because sprue can confuse health practitioners, many people spend years trying to find an answer to their discomforts before finding that a gluten-free diet relieves their pain.

According to the Celiac Sprue Association, if you have gluten intolerance you should avoid durum wheat, semolina wheat, rye, kamut, spelt, barley, triticale and often oats. Some people find they can tolerate spelt, a distant cousin to wheat that's high in fiber and contains more protein (talk to your practitioner). Oats are generally well-tolerated by most people with gluten intolerance, but because oats are often processed on the same machinery as wheat, they may have traces of gluten. If you are gluten intolerant, you can still eat rice, corn, soy, potatoes, beans, sorghum, quinoa, millet, buckwheat, arrowroot and amaranth.

Problem Foods

Other food ingredients can trouble digestion. They include:

  • • Lactose: Up to 20% of Americans are lactose intolerant (Har Health Lett 2003 Dec; 29:6-7), reacting badly to milk products because they lack the enzyme necessary for digesting lactose (milk sugar). For these people, milk, ice cream and cheese cause gas, bloating, abdominal pain and diarrhea.
  • • MSG (monosodium glutamate): A flavor enhancer, MSG can cause allergic responses in susceptible individuals.
  • • Sulfites: Food preservatives-often found in baked goods, wines, snack foods and condiments-have been found to cause hives, nausea, shortness of breath, diarrhea and, in some cases, anaphylactic shock.
  • • Food colorings: These items may cause allergic-type responses in some people.

    Fermented Foods

    If you have what seem to be allergies and intolerances, fermented foods that contain beneficial bacteria (probiotics) can aid the functioning of your digestive tract. Yogurt, kefir, Buttermilk and sauerkraut supply active bacterial cultures and are generally easy to tolerate because they are predigested. According to researchers at Tufts University, yogurt can improve your digestive health and soothe difficulties linked to allergies and intolerances (AJCN 2004 Aug; 80(2):245-56).

    In addition, yogurt and other probiotic foods have been found to reduce the recurrence of irritable bowel flare-ups and may help reduce the risk of colon cancer. Yogurt improves gut microflora, increases bowel transit time and enhances immune response. Probiotics are also available as supplements.

    Helpful Hints

    If you have problems with certain foods or additives, becoming an amateur food detective can make meals more pleasant. Before eating a packaged food, always read the label; if you are unsure of the ingredients, contact the food manufacturer. But, in any uncertain situation, if you are in doubt of a food's ingredients, do without. Better to avoid food problems than realize too late that you've eaten a food that has upset your digestion.

    Some people find their food intolerance comes and goes, often depending upon the amount eaten and how often a food is consumed. For example, some people with lactose intolerance find they can have a little milk in their coffee or on their breakfast cereal one day a week, but have problems if they drink milk on two consecutive days.

    While deciphering which foods in your diet cause you problems can be time consuming, the reward for eliminating these nutrients, better digestion, is great. Don't give up! Persevere and, eventually your digestion will thank you.



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