Friday, December 16, 2016

Chapter 4 THE PROBIOTIC MIRACLE

Chapter 4

THE PROBIOTIC MIRACLE

An Army Of Billions

When you were born, your intestines were free of microorganisms, virtually sterile. Almost immediately, however, bacteria, both beneficial and harmful, fought for dominance.[1*]
 If you were breast fed, somewhere between days four and seven after you were born, the "good guys" won the battle and staked their claim to virtually every square inch of your digestive tract—from your mouth to your anus.[2**]
 (Researchers now realize that one of the chief reasons breast-fed babies get so many fewer infections than formula-fed babies is that mother's milk tends to promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, whereas store-bought formulas have
little such beneficial effect.) Anyway, the net result is that in a breast-fed baby, beneficial bacteria
(such as bifidobacteria) control over 90% of the intestinal tract. These microorganisms, in turn, produce a large amount of essential byproducts in the intestines, which act as a barrier to the growth of dangerous pathogenic microbes that can cause disease and infection.

[1*: It's a battle that's never totally won; the harmful bacteria are never completely eliminated. But in a healthy body, the bad guys never get a chance to gain a foothold—to colonize—to reproduce exponentially. One of the problems, of course, is that every second of every single day, we are constantly being exposed to billions and billions of potentially harmful microorganisms with every breath we take or bit of food that we swallow or swig of water that we drink.]

[2**: The same battle is fought in the vaginal tract, the nasal cavities, and in the mouth. Just as a note, there are some 40 different types of bacteria resident in a healthy mouth alone.]


   When you're healthy, over 100 trillion microorganisms from some 400 different species flourish in your intestinal tract, aiding in digestion, absorption, and the production of significant amounts of B vitamins and enzymes. But even more importantly, they cover virtually every square inch of available surface space from your mouth to your anus, thus crowding out all harmful bacteria—allowing them no place to gain a foothold.

  Unfortunately,the levels of beneficial bacteria decline dramatically as the human body ages. Some of the reasons for this decline include:

> Over time, the colonies of friendly bacteria just naturally age and lose their vitality.

> Disruptions and changes in the acid/alkaline balance of the bowels can play a major role in reducing the growth of beneficial bacteria. In addition, these changes tend to favor the growth of harmful viral and fungal organisms as well as putrefactive, disease-causing bacteria.

> Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) like Advil, Motrin, Midol, etc. are destructive to intestinal flora.

> Chlorine in the drinking water not only serves to kill bacteria in the water; it is equally devastating to the colonies of beneficial bacteria living in the intestines.

 > Radiation and chemotherapy are devastating to your inner bacterial environment.

> Virtually all meat, chicken, and dairy that you eat (other than organic) is loaded with antibiotics, which destroy all of the beneficial bacteria in your gastrointestinal tract.

 > A diet high in meats and fats, because they take so long to break down in the human body, promotes the growth of the harmful, putrefying bacteria.

 > Constipation, of course, allows harmful bacteria to hang around longer, which allows them to proliferate.

> Cigarettes, alcohol, and stress are also major culprits, as are some antibiotic herbs,
such as goldenseal (if taken in sufficient quantity).

> And if you've ever been subjected to a round of "medicinal" antibiotics, you can kiss your beneficial bacteria goodbye. The problem is that antibiotics indiscriminately destroy both bad and good bacteria, allowing virulent, mutant strains of harmful microorganisms to emerge and run rampant inside the body.[1*]

A properly functioning intestinal tract is one of your body's first lines of defense against invaders. In a healthy colon there are, on average, anywhere from 100 billion to 100 trillion beneficial bacteria per milliliter (about 1/5 of a teaspoon) that literally consume harmful bacteria and other invaders. In the typical American, because of poor diet and neglect of the colon, the beneficial bacteria count may be as low as four or five per milliliter. Just compare 100 trillion to four, and ...

[1* Antibiotics (both medicinal and in our food supply) are the #1 culprit in the overgrowth of harmful pathogens in the gastrointestinal tract (a condition called dysbiosis) that may be at the root of many autoimmune disorders and certain cancers.

...you'll have an understanding of the scope of the problem. Many researchers now believe that declining levels of friendly bacteria in the intestinal tract may actually mark the onset of chronic degenerative disease. The benefits of a probiotically optimized intestinal tract include:
>Lowered cholesterol;

>Inhibition of cancer;

>Protection against food poisoning;

>Protection against stomach ulcers;

>Protection against lactose intolerance and casein intolerance;

>Enhanced immunity;

>Protection against many harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungi;

>Protection against candida overgrowth and vaginal yeast infections;

>Prevention and correction of constipation and diarrhea, ileitis and colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and a whole range of other digestive tract dysfunctions;

>Improvement in the health and appearance of the skin;

>Better nutrition from improved absorption and the internal generation of B vitamins;

>Protection against vaginosis and yeast infections.

Summary

  There can be no true health or recovery from disease unless you have colonies of over 100 trillion beneficial microorganisms flourishing throughout your intestinal tract, aiding in digestion,
absorption, the production of significant amounts of vitamins and enzymes, and working to crowd out all harmful bacteria—allowing them no place to gain a foothold. Supplementation with a
good probiotic is mandatory to raise your baseline of health.

General Recommendations

  A good probiotic formula is absolutely essential for long-term intestinal health and long-term parasite control. When choosing a probiotic, look for the following characteristics:

  Not all strains of beneficial bacteria are created equal. For each type of bacteria, there are recognized super strains. Choose a formula that uses only recognized super strains of beneficial bacteria. They will be identified as such on the label or in the company literature. If the strains are not identified, don't buy it.

  Make sure the formula you choose was developed using full-culture processing so that the beneficial bacteria and its powerful supernatant are kept together. The supernatant, which is the medium the culture was grown in, contains a multitude
of beneficial byproducts of the growth process, including vitamins, enzymes, antioxidants, and immune stimulators. 

  Then there's the question of how many live microorganisms are left in your formula when you actually use it. Pick up any probiotic formula, look at the label, and you'll see something like: "Contains 13 billion live organisms per capsule at time of manufacture." And that's the problem: "at time of manufacture." The die-off rate can be astounding. Most formulas will experience a die-off approaching log-3 (or down to a paltry 13 million) within just 60 days of manufacture.[1*]
 Heat and moisture accelerate the process, which is why most manufacturers recommend that both you and the store in which you bought your formula keep your probiotic supply refrigerated.

  There are many beneficial bacteria that can be contained in a good probiotic, but two are preeminent. Look for a formula based on these two:
- L. acidophilus resides primarily in the small intestine [2*]
 and produces a number of powerful antimicrobial compounds in the gut (including acidolin, acidolphilin, lactocidin, and bacteriocin). These compounds can inhibit the growth and toxin producing capabilities of some 23 known disease-causing pathogens (including campylobacter, listeria, and staphylococci), as well as reduce tumor growth and effectively neutralize or inhibit carcinogenic substances. There are three recognized super strains of acidophilus: DDS, NAS, and BT1386. You will find DDS and NAS
in most of the better formulas, but my personal preference is for BT1386. It has an extremely high potential for attachment to the epithelial cells that line the intestine; it's a high producer of hydrogen peroxide, which kills pathogenic bacteria; and, of
the three strains, it's the only one capable of utilizing glycogen to survive and flourish, which means it can thrive in the urinary tract, where it produces lactic acid to inhibit the growth of pathogens. This is particularly important to women to help prevent a whole range of vaginal infections.

- Many researchers believe that declining levels of bifidobacteria in the large intestine actually mark the eventual onset of chronic degenerative disease. Bifidobacteria benefit the body in a number of ways. They (1) consume old fecal matter; (2) have the ability to remove cancer-forming elements, or the enzymes which lead to their formation; (3) protect against the formation of liver, colon, and mammary gland tumors. And in addition to all of that, (4) bifidobacteria are substantial producers of a range of important B vitamins.

  More is not always better. Too many beneficial bacteria in one formula may find the bacteria competing with each other before they can establish themselves in separate areas of the intestinal tract. On the other hand, there are several other bacteria that are extremely beneficial in any probiotic formula.

- L salivarius helps digest foods in the intestinal tract and makes vital nutrients more assimilable. It also works to eat away encrusted fecal matter throughout the entire colon; it helps repair the intestinal tract by providing needed enzymes and essential nutrients; and it adheres to the intestinal wall, thereby forming a living matrix that helps protect the mucosal lining.

[1* There is a new process called LiveBac®, which significantly retards the rate of die-off. Look for formulas that make use of this process.]

[2* It's also important to note that L. acidophilus is the primary beneficial bacteria in the vaginal tract. When the presence of the acidophilus is compromised, this allows the bad guys such as Gardnerella vaginalis or E. coli or Chlamydia to take over.

- L. rhamnosus is a powerful immune stimulator. It can increase the natural killing activity of spleen cells, which may help to prevent tumor formation. It boosts the ability of the body to destroy foreign invaders and other harmful matter by three times normal activity; and has been shown to increase circulating antibody levels by six to
eight times.

- L. plantarum has the ability to eliminate thousands of species of pathogenic bacteria. It also has extremely high adherence potential for epithelial tissue and seems to favor colonizing the same areas of the intestinal tract that E. coli prefers—in effect, serving to crowd E. coli out of the body. At one time, plantarum was a major part of our diets (found in sourdough bread, sauerkraut, etc.), but is now virtually nowhere to be found.

- Other important friendly bacteria you might find in a good formula include: Streptococcus thermophilus, L. bulgaricus, and L. casei.

- Much has been written about the properties of the soil-based bacteria such as: Bacillus subtilis, L. sporogenes, and B. laterosporus. For many people, they can produce a powerful boost to the immune system. But, in certain circumstances, they may become toxic. It's hard to argue with the great results that many people have had using formulations that contain these cultures. On the other hand, it's possible to get all of the same results using only the "safer" cultures that I've mentioned above.

- Note: a good probiotic formulation will usually contain fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS) which help promote the growth of beneficial bacteria.[1]

  - One final note: start slowly. When you first start using a probiotic supplement, there is a good chance that you will precipitate a die-off of bad bacteria in your intestinal tract. This can lead to excessive gas and stomach rumblings and cramping
for 10-21 days. Start with one capsule (or even half) for several days. Build up slowly to the recommended dosage for your particular supplement.

>Eating yogurt (unless you make your own) does not really help. First, the bacteria used to make most yogurt (L. bulgaricus and S. thermophilus) are not the key beneficial bacteria, although they are indeed helpful. (Some brands throw a small amount of acidophilus in after the fact—just so they can put it on the label). Even more important, though, much of the yogurt that you buy in the store is now pasteurized after it is made. Pasteurization before the yogurt culture is introduced is essential to the making of yogurt; but pasteurization after the culture has been allowed to grow is done merely to increase shelf life and totally destroys all the benefits inherent in the yogurt.

>A diet high in complex carbohydrates such as fruits, grains, and vegetables promotes the growth of bifidobacteria in the large intestine.

>And of course, drinking chlorinated water, or eating meats or dairy produced with antibiotics, totally defeats any program you're on.

[1 For some of these bacteria, such as the Bifidus, FOS can increase their effectiveness by a factor of 1,000 times or more!! ]

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