How do probiotics work?
Probiotics work by helping to re-establish the body's naturally
occurring bacteria in the GI tract, also known as gut flora. This
task is accomplished by probiotics' ability to reverse imbalances
of the types of bacteria in the digestive system.
Are probiotics safe?
Yes. The safety of the bacteria used in the manufacture of probiotic
supplements has been confirmed through more than 100
years of scientific research and experience.
Can I consume probiotics naturally from foods?
Yes. When cultured milk-based products are supplemented with
probiotics, this ensures the growth of good bacteria in products
such as yogurt, cottage cheese, and buttermilk. Fermented vegetables
such as sauerkraut and soybeans (miso) are also natural
probiotics. Unleavened sourdough breads also create a favorable
environment for the development of healthy gut flora.
Do probiotics stimulate the immune system?
It appears so. Researchers are discovering that friendly bacteria
not only promote digestive health but may also stimulate a
healthy immune system by crowding out harmful bacteria as
well as by generating "friendly" signals to our immune system.
Why should I take probiotics?
Probiotics offer a safe and effective way for you to restore the
natural balance of your digestive system, especially if you suffer
from constipation, diarrhea, abdominal discomfort, urgency, gas
or bloating. Studies have demonstrated that probiotics can provide
relief for some sufferers from inflammatory bowel disease
(Crohn's and ulcerative colitis) and irritable bowel syndrome
(IBS). Probiotics are also recommended for anyone taking an
antibiotic drug in order to normalize and re-populate the gut
flora destroyed by the antibiotic. Probiotics are also suggested
for reducing the recurrence of vaginal yeast infections and for
normalizing high cholesterol levels.