Probiotics are foods with beneficial bacteria. According to the Food and Agricultural Organization, probiotics are live microorganisms which produce significant health benefits.
Antibiotics can decrease the body’s beneficial bacteria, compromising the immune system. Ultimately, the good bacterium becomes weak, leaving the body vulnerable. The infectious bacteria will spread quicker than the good bacteria, making it difficult for the body to effectively fight off infection.
Beneficial bacteria are not as opposing as infectious bacteria, which is when these bacteria begin to undergo mutation because the body no longer has as much of the good bacteria. Antibiotics have become a prominent cause of bacterial infections and as we take more and more antibiotics, the good bacteria become more resistant, which is why probiotics are so important.
Probiotics can be very beneficial, especially to the digestive system. Typically, the digestive tract has several types of probiotic bacteria which helps control the development of harmful bacteria. Once they begin to decrease, harmful bacteria can take over.
The scientific community has taken a recent interest in probiotics and are researching their effectiveness in treating or preventing illnesses such as;
– Inflammation following colon surgery
– Childhood eczema
– Irritable bowel syndrome
– Bladder cancer recurrence
– Diarrhea as a result of antibiotic treatments
– Intestinal infections
– Urinary tract infections
– Vaginal yeast infections
Yogurt is the best known source for probiotics. Yeast is another good source, or one can opt for probiotic supplements. Probiotics were popular in Europe and Asia for several years while Americans chose supplements instead.
In America, it is mandatory that yogurt be made up of live cultures including, Streptococcus Thermo-philus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus. Nevertheless, some contain more than others so read the label before purchasing yogurt and make sure it contains active cultures. Several brands don’t list the cultures added.
The probiotic trend is running alongside the new diet based on the Bible called, “The Jesus Diet,” due in part to Dr. Don Colbert’s book, “What Would Jesus Eat?” Another is “The Maker’s Diet” by Jordan S. Rubin.
Rubin said the Savior drank goat’s milk instead of cow’s milk, suggesting that goat’s milk yogurt is more rich in probiotics and very healthy, especially with raw honey and berries.
However, keep in mind that dietary supplements can cause side effects, especially in combination with prescription or over-the-counter medications. Consult a physician before deciding on taking probiotics, or any other kind of supplement.
Most any kind of yogurt contains live cultures. For the average person, one to two containers a week should supply an ample supply of probiotics.