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Probiotics 101_Final

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>> Hi there. Are you familiar with probiotics? Chances are even if you haven't used them yourself, you've heard a lot of talk about them. Probiotics are all the rage today and for good reason. In this lecture, we'll go over what a probiotic is, where they come from, and what they can do for your clients. While probiotics may be the latest health craze, the concept that consuming bacteria can be beneficial to one's health has actually been around for a long time. In 1892, a cholera epidemic was sweeping France, and a man named √Člie Metchnikoff was struggling to understand why the disease struck some people and not others. To do so, he consumed a drink full of cholera, a coca cholera, if you will. Fortunately, he never got sick, so he let a volunteer drink some too. When that volunteer also failed to get sick, Metchnikoff offered to drink to a second test subject, and that man got cholera and nearly died. When Metchnikoff took his experiments into the Petri dish to find out what caused such a difference. He discovered that some microbes hindered the cholera growth while others stimulated it. He then proposed that the bacteria of the human intestinal flora played a part in disease prevention. And he reasoned, if swallowing a pathogenic bacterial culture sickened you, then swallowing a beneficial one would make you healthier. Therefore, he decided the proper alteration of the intestinal flora could help battle diseases that have plagued humans for centuries. He discovered that feeding the body lactic acid from fermented dairy products accomplishes the goal of manipulating gut bacteria. So then, what exactly is a probiotic? The word is thrown around a lot on food, drinks, and supplement labels. Here's an easy way to think of it. Antibiotic means anti-life, and probiotic means for pro-life. Antibiotics kill bacteria while probiotics are full of live bacteria. Probiotics are living organisms that are beneficial to health when administered in adequate amounts. Now almost 100 years after the discovery of probiotics, they're coming into favor again. Probiotics may have been forgotten for some time, but they have now found their place in mainstream conversations about gut health and general wellness. This is great news. So who are these live organisms? They're the same bacteria as the good guys we have in the gut. We all have them. But due to our modern lifestyles full of antibiotics, anti-bacterial products, and poor dietary choices, the average person has a reduced amount of these critters in their gut. Abundance is important though because by supporting the life of your gut bacteria, you're also supporting your health and vitality. It's no wonder that fermented foods and probiotics have been a part of many cultures. It's almost like we intuitively knew, almost as if we had a gut feeling. Probiotics are often referred to as one specific thing, but really, there are various types of probiotics. And the definition is starting to expand as more types of beneficial bacteria are being explored. The major probiotics available today include lactobacillus, bifidobacterium, soil based bacteria, and spore forming bacteria. Let's take a look at what each of these does. First, we'll look at lactobacillus and bifidobacterium together followed by soil based bacteria and spore forming bacteria since both of these duos have much in common. Lactobacillus and bifidobacterium both produce lactic acid by eating lactose, sugar, and carbohydrates. These are the bacteria that ferment foods, and we've already been consuming them for thousands of years. Lactobacillus are found mostly in the small intestine, in the upper GI tract. Bifidobacterium are present in larger amounts in children. Some foods, naturally, can be fermented with lactobacillus or bifidobacterium such as yogurt, milk, and cod liver oil. Bacteria that produce lactic acid inhibit the growth of pathogens because they lower pH. This is what creates that characteristic sour taste in fermented foods. Lactic acid bacteria feed and nourish the gut lining and stimulate the immune system. They can also inhibit candida growth. Lactobacillus and bifidobacterium are categorized as transient. This means that they move through the digestive system when consumed but don't colonize or make a home in the gut. Most of them don't survive the harsh conditions of the gut, but they make their presence known as they pass through. Traditionally, for a strain to be considered probiotic, it was thought it had to be able to survive the harsh conditions of the stomach and the small intestine, including the low pH, bile, and everything else that goes on in that harsh environment. However, this definition is in flux, as we now recognize the abilities and benefits of transient bacteria. Lactic acid bacteria, which are also known as LAB for short, promote regular bowel movements, produce antimicrobials that can ward off pathogenic bacteria, help the body absorb minerals and nutrients, support healthy levels of stomach acid, and encourage production of digestive enzymes. LABs also aid in the detoxification process by consuming toxins. What's really cool is that it appears they can do this even if they're not alive. One recent study showed that live lactobacillus in yogurt resulted in the same benefits as pasteurized yogurt. Soil based bacteria, also known as SBOs for short, are bacteria that are naturally found in the soil. They enrich the soil so that plants grow better. These bacteria should be on our food helping us to digest everything we eat. Many believe that a major reason our modern day food is so devoid of nutrients is due to the decline of these soil based micro-organisms in our food supply because of the pesticides and sanitizing process that most of our food goes through before it hits the shelves. Some SBOs live in our gut while other strains are transient, just passing through. Both types enhance the immune system. Here is an important distinction to remember. Some soil based bacteria are spore forming bacteria but not all spores are soil based. Spore forming bacteria are highly resistant, meaning they can survive in just about any environment and grow rapidly. They can even survive antibiotics. Bacillus subtilis is an example of soil based bacteria that are also spore forming and can be found in probiotics formulas. Spore formers have been around in nature for a long time. They're more likely to make a home in your digestive tract and they can remain dormant for a long time, reviving themselves when nutrients are present. When revived, they make it their duty to clean up the gut like a gardener weeding out the pesky bacteria. If taking probiotics that contain spore forming bacteria, it's recommended to take them with food. This is because the amino acids and carbohydrates in food move the spores from the dormant to active state in the GI tract. But even when SBOs and spore formers colonize in the gut, they don't stay forever. Studies are showing that they stay just long enough until it's advantageous to spread themselves around elsewhere in the environment. Remember, bacteria are smart and can communicate. You now have an understanding of the four major types of probiotics, lactobacillus and bifidobacterium, which eat lactic acid and are transient and soil based bacteria and spore forming bacteria, which live in the gut and help sweep out the bad bacteria. But there's one more honorable mention to discuss. Probiotics are by definition bacteria. However, there is one known strain of yeast that has been shown to be probiotic. This is Saccharomyces boulardii. This probiotic yeast has shown some success preventing recurrent clostridium difficile, which is a condition of chronic diarrhea. It's the only yeast considered a probiotic and is being researched as a potential immuno-biotic. Yeast also exists naturally in the gut in much smaller proportions. Yeast is often thought of as bad, but it's part of a healthy microbiome when it's in balance. Now that you know all about the different types of probiotics, here comes the fun part, let's debunk four of the most common probiotic myths. Myth number one, probiotics do not survive stomach acid. It is true that most probiotics have a hard time surviving the acidic pH of the stomach, but there are technologies that protect against this. Look for probiotics with encapsulation technology and strains that have been shown to survive the intestinal tract. Spore forming bacteria are dormant and able to survive high temperatures. The idea is that spore formers can easily colonize the colon, but another thing to consider is that transient bacteria have great benefits to offer too, even if they don't colonize the GI tract. Transient probiotics need to be taken regularly because of this. Myth number two, there are already so many bacteria in your stomach that adding a few more is pointless. If there are trillions of bacteria in your stomach, what good could another billion really do? This line of thinking makes sense. But remember, the end goal may not be for the strains to colonize, the overall goal is to support a healthy microbiome. Probiotics can swap genes with the existing bacteria through horizontal gene transfer, and they can stimulate the immune system. They can also influence inflammation. Probiotics can neutralize toxins that may be contributing to a leaky gut. Introducing new bacteria on a regular basis will support these functions even if they're just passing through for a visit. Myth number three, supplements aren't necessary. Why not just eat some yogurt? Most of our yogurt is commercialized, meaning pasteurized. So the bacteria are killed and the product is filled with sugar. Your gut doesn't need any extra sugar. You may still receive some probiotic effects, as mentioned earlier, but yogurt itself is not a probiotic. Natural and homemade yogurt is great. However, for probiotics to stimulate the immune system, they must be present in large amounts which cannot be provided by yogurt. Myth number four, fermented foods have more bacterial variety than probiotics making supplements inferior. Some people prefer to eat fermented foods to get the full range of bacteria that nature intended, but not all strains are created equal. At this time, there are only a few bacteria strains that are officially considered probiotic, meaning they've been shown through research to exhibit health benefits in the gut. Fermented foods are great, but they cannot deliver therapeutic doses of live bacteria. Many probiotics are based on particularly beneficial strains like lactobacillus that may be lacking in the gut. Adding in these particular strains can help the gut rebuild and attain balance. Having the knowledge to tackle these four common myths about probiotics will help you explain to your clients what probiotics really do and what the benefits are to taking them. As popular as probiotics have become, misinformation still exists and clients will often look to you to advise them. Probiotics have taken off in recent years as a health craze in an attempt to restore our health and nurture a healthy microbiome that has been damaged by our modern lifestyle. Now that we realize the importance of these microbes, we're starting to pay more attention to keeping our inner and outer ecosystems intact. You can educate your clients about probiotics and empower them to become savvy consumers without having to prescribe or step outside of your scope of practice. With advancements in genomics, we're able to look at strains in a way that we were not able to before and we're learning that not all strains are the same. More importantly, what a strain creates may be more important than the species itself. This is why many companies are investing in research around their own patented strains. Anyone can isolate lactobacillus, for example, from yogurt and start his or her own culture. But one person's lactobacillus may not be the same as their neighbors and it may not have the same actions or health benefits. Also, a strain's health benefits depend largely on the food it's given, just like us. We've been eating bacteria from our soil, on our plants, and in our food for a long time. Probiotics are actually everywhere because really bacteria are everywhere. It's only a recent phenomenon that we've become so clean. The idea that we need to add probiotics back in not only makes sense but maybe essential to reestablishing our healthy microbiomes. Take a look at your current lifestyle. Do you think you are deprived of bacteria and may benefit from probiotics? Think it over, and keep the conversation going in the Facebook group, until next time.

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Duration: 12 minutes and 49 seconds
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Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
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Views: 6
Posted by: ninaz on Mar 21, 2018

Probiotics 101_Final

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