Good Bacteria, Friendly Bacteria: Probiotics
Probiotics are a class of "good" or "friendly" bacteria that are inhabitants of the intestinal tract, which helps in digestion. They aid in digestion by breaking down foods into their component parts for absorption into the body. "Bad" or "pathogenic" bacteria on the other hand, can cause intestinal microflora imbalances that lead to illness and diseases.
We start life with a relatively healthy intestinal tract, lifestyle and environmental factors can greatly reduce the number of friendly bacteria allowing pathogenic bacteria to dominate and cause problems.
Supplementing our diets with an effective probiotic re-populates the intestinal tract with friendly strains to reverse this trend, improve intestinal health and help guard against diseases. leading to a relatively healthy immune system that we once had.
There are almost 100 different species and 100 trillion of total bacteria in the human intestinal tract. Friendly and pathogenic bacteria form a delicate and constantly changing balance as they compete to take hold and remain. Both friendly and pathogenic bacteria are affected in the changes in the environment. Bacterial infections, stress, traveling, antibiotic treatment, alcohol, poor diet and a number of other factors can and do disturb the delicate balance in our intestinal tract, often decreasing the number of beneficial bacteria while allowing an increase in pathogenic bacteria. Some common symptoms can become chronic, as an Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and can compromise the immune system and lead to serious illness.
Lactobacillus (one of the many friendly species of intestinal microflora) is considered an especially beneficial bacteria in its ability to aid in the breakdown of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats in foods, and help absorption of necessary elements and nutrients, such as minerals, amino acids and vitamins required for humans and other animals to survive. Probiotic supplements contain the beneficial bacteria like Lactactobacillus help to adjust this balance. Prevention of illness by a well-maintained microflora balance is accomplished by a method referred to as "competitive exclusion". That is, the friendly bacteria take up positions known as enteric sites therefore preventing the pathogenic bacteria from establishing itself and proliferating to become the predominant bacteria.
Probiotics in the form of substances containing Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium and Acidophilus cultures have been used for centuries as food preservatives and natural sources to promote good human health without specific knowledge of their active ingredients or how they work. Lactobacillus was first identified by Pasteur (1845 - 1895) in France, the pioneer of modern microbiology. A real understanding of how probiotics function began when the Nobel Prize winning Russian physiologist, Metchnikoff (1845 - 1916), introduced his intoxication theory. He stated that the main cause of aging is "toxicants" formed by intestinal putrefaction and fermentation and suggested drinking beverages such as yogurt containing lactic acid bacteria would prevent aging. Lactobacilli suddenly attracted world attention.
Since Metchnikoff, a lot of research and clinical trials have been made but his "Eternal Youth Theory" has repeated a cycle of disappearing for a time and then returning again to public notice with the issue never really being resolved in either a scientific or practical sense.
Recently, thanks to remarkable advances in microbiology and intestinal bacteriology, it has been made clear that certain lactobacilli, especially a Lactobacillus genus and a Bifidobacterium genus, have high mucus membrane chemical affinity, and play important roles in human health. Metchnikoff's assumption has been substantiated and even become common knowledge in the health sciences.
Probiotic supplements have now been embraced and accepted as agents that can bring significant health benefits:
As our population ages, the importance of the prevention of disease has been recognized anew and our entire society has become health-oriented. Following that trend, product development based on beneficial bacteria including lactobacilli is now in full bloom. While there is a scientifically proven benefit to effective probiotics, there is also some confusion amid the wide range of supplements available and the claims made for them. There has also been some disappointment for some of these products not resulting in any noticeable change or decrease in symptoms of an intestinal problem. It is for this reason that we have developed KE-99 LACTO. Applying the same rigorous scientific research techniques, experts in microbiology and intestinal bacteriology have developed a lactobacillus strain with superior ability to adhere to the intestinal walls and displace pathogenic bacteria and to absorb harmful compounds. Finally, with KE-99, there is a probiotic that clearly demonstrates the promise of probiotic supplements.
For information on this exceptional product, read About KE-99.