Probiotics: Why We Need Them

Increase the strength of your immune system

By Roni Deluz ND, RN, Ph. D

Restoring the Good Bacteria in Your Colon

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria, or yeasts, in the form of a dietary supplement.  Taking probiotics helps to replenish the natural gut flora (good intestinal bacteria) that thrives in your digestive system.  Doctors and nutritionists often recommend probiotics, particularly after you have had a course of antibiotics. Many health professionals believe that probiotics help to increase the strength of the immune system and help you combat allergies as well as assist your body in regulating the gut flora.

After colon hydrotherapy, most hydrotherapists will serve you acidophilus.  This common probiotic is often found in yogurts and other dairy foods.  As you get older, eat meat, travel, and use prescription drugs such as antibiotics and corticosteroids, the good gut flora that exists in our digestive tract begins to decline.  Much of this flora will typically help our immune systems and fight off disease, but as their numbers decline this protection declines as well.

In addition to helping our bodies stay disease free, this gut flora also helps us to digest our nutrients, vitamins and enzymes. Probiotics help us to supplement those floras and to replace those that have died off.  Daily intake of foods that contain probiotics helps with several digestive issues. They can also help to increase the amount of nutrients we absorb, reduce blood cholesterol and even help to protect against tumors and colon cancer.

 8 Favorite Foods that Contain Probiotics:

Coleslaw, Sauerkraut, Kefir, Yogurts, Pickles. (I grew up eating these!)
Kombucha, Tempeh, Miso. (Convenient to find in groceries store!)

The Most Common Strains of Probiotics Include:

Lactobacillus acidophilus
Lactobacillus casei
Bifidobacterium longum
Bifidobacterium bifidum
Saccharomyces boulardii

The lactobacillus strains are helpful to the small intestine, while the bifidobacteria is helpful to the large intestine, as they generally reside in these areas. If you are researching the best supplements, make sure you have a balance of both types for small intestine and large intestine.

Interestingly, vegetarians tend to have a healthy balance of “good” and “bad” bacteria, while people who eat meat tend to have larger amounts of “bad” bacteria, particularly Bacteroid.  Generally, probiotics have many health benefits besides improving your overall digestion.

Other Health Benefits of Probiotics:

Prevents gas
Prevents bloating
Prevents bad breath
Replenishes “good” bacteria after antibiotic use
Enhances the function of the immune system
Helps digest food
Prevents constipation
Helps prevent infections
Prevents severe reactions of allergies
Contributes to organ health

Probiotics not only have a positive effect on your colon, but also in other systems of your body including skin, respiratory and genital-urinary tracts.

Delicious Smoothie for Colon Health

1 cup of shredded cabbage
1 cup of frozen strawberries
2 kiwi fruit
1 cup of yogurt
¼ c of flaxseeds
¼ c of pumpkin seeds
1 cup of any tea below (cold) (use instead of water or milk)

Herbal teas to use:
fennel, chamomile, green tea

This juice repairs the mucosa of the stomach and is great for colon irritability and constipation. I drink this juice to stay healthy, keep weight down and stay cleansed.

Eating foods with probiotics is certainly healthy and beneficial in your overall health and weight. Research has it that taking extra supplements of probiotics can assure you that your body is getting enough to help with weight loss by increasing a hormone called GLP-. This hormone helps to burn fat and keep hunger down. Probiotics can also cause a release of a special protein called ANGPTL4. This protein that’s released can decrease fat storage.

We all want healthy levels of intestinal flora. Research continues to support the concept that to live a long, vibrant life depends on the strength and health of our colon. Support your colon by adding the foods above and try the delicious smoothie recipe!

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  1. This is a very good, informative article.

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