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  • Writer's pictureJoe

Probiotics Pt.2

Updated: Apr 18, 2019

The live-in colony of microbes in the gut, which can weigh several pounds, consists of hundreds of individual species, many still being discovered !

They form a digestive powerhouse, breaking down food and turning it into nutritious components for us to utilise as well as our microbes..

Having the right bacteria is therefore vital for healthy digestion, keeping our immune system strong, and consequently, fighting infections. However, bear in mind that not all bacteria are good for us. There are harmful or pathogenic bacteria that can either cause infection directly or produce toxic substances that contribute to inflammation, or cancer, particularly of the digestive tract. The good bacteria, principally two families – Lactobicillus and Bifodobacteria, to a large extent keep the bad guys under control.

Benefits of Probiotics include:

  • Increase resistance to infections

  • Relieve symptoms of IBS

  • Boost immunity

  • Reduces the risk of certain cancers.

It is best to have Probiotics either in fermented foods such as yoghurt or via a daily supplement. Since the amount of colonic bacteria decreases with age, its more important in the over fifties.

In animal studies, Probiotics have been shown to help reduce the symptoms of stress when animals are transported – so if you are a stressed commuter, or have a stress filled job/home life they may help for that too.

Another way to boost the healthy bacteria is to eat foods that feed them. The best food for health promoting bacteria are called fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS), also known as Prebiotics. Bananas are especially rich in these, as are other fruit, barley, Jerusalem artichokes and onions.

Go grab that yoghurt and a banana – help boost your intestinal flora!

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