Pro-biotic Good Gut Health Guide
We have 10x as many bacteria cells living symbiotically with us, as we have cells of our own. Bacteriaʼs cells are smaller than our own and most of them reside in our gut.
Our digestive system accounts for about 80% of our immune function and pro-biotic bacteria are a critical part of that defense.
Our mind and mood are hugely affected by the health of our gut. 90% of the sleep regulating hormone serotonin in our body, is found in our gut ʻbrainʼ – which is about the same size as the brain of a cat.
Probiotic – Beneﬁcial Bacteria are necessary for
- Digestion and absorption of certain carbohydrates.
- Absorption of minerals and elimination of toxins.
- Production of vitamins – vitamin K and B vitamins are produced by gut ﬂora.
- Keep bad bacteria under control.
- Controlling allergies – bacteria help the body recognise the difference between pathogens and non-harmful antigens.
- Good bacteria support your immune function.
Fermented/Cultured foods like – sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kombucha, apple cider vinegar are living foods, teeming with probiotic bacteria and yeasts. They are hugely beneﬁcial to health.
Your gut is like a garden. Sugar is a fertilizer to the bad bacteria.
Vegetables – especially onions, garlic and leafy green vegetables are prebiotic – food for the good bacteria.
Avoid unnecessary use of antibiotics, especially broadspectrum anti-biotics that kill bacteria indiscriminately. If you do have to take anti-biotics be sure to take a probiotic after the course has ﬁnished.
Avoid chlorinated water by ﬁltering tap water. Chlorine is in our water to kill microbes, and will do so inside us.
Avoid pesticide and herbicide in foods by eating organic. These chemicals kill good gut bacteria.
Avoid anti-bacterial products and soaps. Our healthy bacteria are there to keep the bad bacteria in check. Killing bacteria indiscriminately will put your health at more risk. Look after your little helpers by using natural products on your skin.
When taking a probiotic
- Take on an empty stomach (less acid and bile – which will kill the bacteria). Take around 20 minutes before a meal.
- Refrigeration will prolong the life of the product.
- Take at least 3 hours away from anti-biotics.
- If taking as a prophylactic when traveling take 2 a day for a week before you go and after you return. If you get ill take up to 6 a day, then 4 till you are better.
A guide to the most important pro-biotics
There are in fact hundreds of different strains of bacteria and yeasts in our digestive tracts. The ones considered important are often the best researched. Probiotics can have different applications. These are some of the top ones and why.
- Produces vitamin K.
- Produces anti-microbial substances keeping pathogens in check.
- It has been shown to be an effective treatment for allergies, asthma, atopic dermatitis, breast cancer, colitis, diarrhoea, H. pylori infection, high cholesterol, immune balancer, IBS, leaky gut, candida and vaginosis.
- Fights off pathogens.
- Ferments sugars (so good for candida).
- Should be one of the ﬁrst to establish in the infant gut. Babies fed on formula and suffering diarrhoea and allergies maybe lacking this.
- Good post anti-biotic treatment.
- Help in lactose intolerance.
- Improves conditions including gum bleeding, tooth decay, bad breath, thrush and canker sores.
- Produces B vitamins and enzymes that aid digestion • Strongly anti-microbial preventing growth of pathogenic organisms.
- Aids digestion.
- Reduces allergies.
- Prevents growth of some tumours.
- Supports healthy liver function, detoxiﬁcation, and healthy bowel action.
- Assists absorption of vitamins and minerals like calcium.
- Lowers pH of colon.
- Produces B vitamins.
- A yeast not a bacteria. Used in the tropics to treat cholera.
- Useful in other chronic diarrhoea conditions such as clostridium difﬁcile.
- Very helpful in the treatment of IBS, travelers diarrhoea, medication associated diarrhoea, salmonella and E. coli infections.
- Stimulates IgA immune response.
- Helps maintain and healthy intestinal lining.
- Useful in the treatment of IBS, Crohns, Colitis, Autism, ADD and ADHD.
- Can decrease blood pressure.
- Anti-microbial preventing the growth of pathogens.
- Helps reduce lactose intolerance.
- Reduces duration of diarrhoea.
- Inhibits growth of harmful bacteria.
- Maybe helpful in the treatment of anxiety through the stimulation of GABA receptors.
- Before the advent of antibiotics this was the No.1 treatment for dysentery and other digestive issues.
- One of the most beneﬁcial immune stimulants, activating IgA IgG and IgM antibodies – which ﬁghts viruses, pathogenic bacteria and fungi.
- Assists the development of other healthy bacterial colonies. Therefore keeping colon ﬂora balanced.
- Helpful for lactose intolerance.
- Improves digestion generally.
- Inhibits the growth of H. pylori.
Get healthy by looking after and replenishing your inner ecosystem!