Take Charge of Your Gut & Immune Health with Probiotic 32 Billion
Author: Vanessa Gagliardi
Our digestive system was once considered a relatively simple and straightforward body system, essentially comprised of one long tube for food to pass through, get digested and absorbed, and then excreted. It was also once thought that the microorganisms that live in the gut were pathogenic and could cause systemic infections. Today, we know that the trillions of living organisms existing in our gut are actually mostly beneficial and are crucial for our overall health and wellbeing.
The human gut is a huge and complex ecosystem where microorganisms, nutrients and cells interact with each other to maintain gut health and function. This interaction also supports other body systems, including the immune system. The diverse number of different microorganisms that inhibit the gut are known as the intestinal microbiota, or microbiome.
Are you curious to know how probiotics can help you? We’ve answered some common questions about probiotics and their role on the body to help you understand their benefits.
What are probiotics?
Probiotics are defined as live microorganisms that confer a health benefit on the host. They are living, beneficial bacteria that colonise the intestines to support the growth of more beneficial bacteria.
Many people relate the term ‘probiotics’ to a supplement, however we actually ingest some probiotic strains through our diet. Fermented foods like yoghurt, sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha contain strains of probiotics that help to support digestive health, immune system and more.
Why should you take probiotics?
Probiotics offer several benefits on the body, particularly in supporting digestive health and function, and also supporting a healthy immune system. They modulate our microbiota, helping to colonise beneficial bacteria and they also exert against pathogenic bacteria to prevent or limit their colonisation. This is their primary use, restoring normal flora that is often eliminated due to a poor diet. Signs of bad bacterial overgrowth include thrush, poor immune function, bloating and digestive discomfort, bad breath and fungal skin infections.
Probiotics also help to improve the physiological barrier function of the gut. They signal pathways that lead to the increase of the protective mucous layer that lines the digestive tract and on the proteins of tight junctions (tight junctions are formed by intestinal cells that limit water and food particles from escaping the intestines and into intracellular space).
Taking probiotics also supports your immune system. More than 70% of your immune cells are located in your gut, especially in the small intestine. Good bacteria help to stimulate immune cells like immunoglobulins and cytokines that support healthy immune responses in the body.
Not all strains are the same – which ones should I look out for?
With so many different probiotic supplements on the market, it can be difficult to sift through all the long winded names to find the best one to suit you. Generally speaking, it is ideal to opt for a supplement containing multiple probiotic strains to help with microbiome diversity.
Our supplement Probiotic 32 Billion is a broad-spectrum formula that contains 6 different probiotic strains to support digestive health, to help restore and maintain friendly gut flora, relieve symptoms of medically diagnosed Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) such as diarrhoea, and to help improve immune system function.
The Lactobacillus strains in our probiotic formula promote overall good health. They inhibit the overgrowth of pathogenic bacteria by producing acids that reduce intestinal pH, hindering the growth of pathogenic bacterial strains. Lactobacillus strains, particularly Lactobacillus rhamnosus (GG), are used in cases of diarrhoea, particularly the diarrhoea caused by antibiotic use. GG also helps to reduce pain and discomfort associated with IBS in adults and children and supports the immune system by increasing natural killer cells (immune cells that destroy pathogens).
Most probiotic strains work in the intestines. Our formulation contains Lactobacillus reuterii, also known as Pylopass™ that helps support upper digestive function too. Lactobacillus reuterii has also been studied on its ability to support the immune system and overall digestive system function.
It is currently acknowledged that the gut microbiome interacts with human health and that its modulation by probiotics is an interesting way to support intestinal and immune health, as well as general wellbeing. If you’d like to reduce the symptoms of your medically diagnosed IBS, want to help your immune system or simply want to support your general health and wellbeing, Probiotic 32 Billion could be the product for you.
If you have concerns about the health of your digestive system, please seek advice from your healthcare professional. Probiotic supplements are not designed to treat or cure any disorders of the digestive tract.
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- Francavilla, R.; Miniello, V.; Magista, AM et al. 2010, “A randomized controlled trial of Lactobacillus GG in children with functional abdominal pain”, Peadiatrics, Vol. 126(6), pp. e1445-e1452
- Gruenwald, J. et al. PDR for Herbal Medicines 4th ed. Thomsons, Montvale. Pp 996 – 1001
- Mahan, L. & Escott-Stump, S. Krause’s Food, Nutrition, & Diet Therapy. 11th ed. Saunders, Elsevier, USA. Pp 303
- Sanchez, B. et al. (2017), Probiotics, gut microbiota, and their influence on host health and disease, Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, 61(1)
- Turner et al., (2017) ‘Effect of probiotic on innate inflammatory response and viral shedding in experimental rhinovirus infection – a randomised controlled trial’ Beneficial Microbes, 8(2): 207-215
|Written by Vanessa Gagliardi|
Vanessa (BHSc Naturopathy) is a qualified naturopath with a passion for good food. She uses nutrition and herbal medicine to help people feel their best, from the inside out.
Vanessa enjoys nature walks and Pilates, and loves a good almond mocha.