Probiotics in Everyday Items

You wouldn’t believe the places probiotics are showing up these days! As consumers catch on to the exciting health benefits these little guys give us, manufacturers are rising up to the new demand.

From suppositories and enemas to facial cleansers (such as Clinique’s Probiotic Cleanser) and pet products, beneficial probiotics are cropping up in all kinds of everyday goods you’re already using. Even sun block lotions and drinking straws are made with probiotics these days.

In 2003, a Swedish biotech company, Ellen AB, began selling probiotic tampons in 2003 with natural fibers treated with lactic acid bacteria. They have been shown to decrease yeast and urinary tract infections in women (replacing the longtime household remedy of dipping a tampon in yogurt).

Other products with probiotics include:

✓ Gum/mint for oral and teeth health (www.profreshmints.com)

✓ Face creams (such as Epicuren acidophilus probioticcream)

✓ Soaps (Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotic Kampuku soap)

✓ Makeup (Clinique SPF 15)

✓ Anti-aging serums (Bioelements)

✓ Skin brighteners (Miessence)

When it comes to probiotics: the more the merrier.  Getting as many as you can from food to hygiene products and supplements like Probulin, ensures a better chance that the good bacteria you need gives you the health benefits you’re looking for.

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

Heart Attack Clues in Your Gut

The bacteria in your gut may offer clues as to whether you’re likely to have a heart attack. A recent study published in a biology journal (FASEB Journal, published by the Federal of American Societies for Experimental Biology) reported that the “types and levels” of gut bacteria are a good indication of the likelihood of a heart attack. The research was done by scientists at the Medical College of Wisconsin (Milwaukee, Wis.) also said that changing the bacteria could reduce risk.

In fact, rat studies found that those given specific probiotics (Lactobacillus plantarum) had smaller heart attacks and better return of mechnical function afterwards.

For more detailed information on this study, check out this article on ScienceBlog.

It’s fascinating to see where the research is going with probiotics and understanding the role bacteria play in our lives! Nice to know when you’re taking Probulin you may be decreasing the chance you’ll have a heart attack!

Go with your Gut,

The Probulin Team

Probiotics in your Grocery Store

If you’re anything like me, when you first walk into your neighborhood store, you’re reaching for the sanitary wipes and giving the cart a good rub-down before shopping. Nowadays, though, you might be combing the shelves of that same market in search of the right kind of friendly bacteria to get your hands on.

Lately, probiotics haven’t just caught the attention of the science community. There’s a growing market out there of consumers looking for ways to improve their quality of health. Corporate America has caught on and now you, the consumer, are rewarded with an assortment new products that will help you get the probiotics you need.

Products you may encounter include:

Probiotic “shots”: Popular in other countries, these drinks are newly arrived in the United States, and contain a good, hearty dose of probiotics in each shot.

Probiotic snacks: From buckwheat snacks to granola bars, keep an eye out for probiotic labels.

Probiotic chocolate: Seriously, does it get better than this? Probiotic chocolate. . . chocolate that helps keep you healthy. Yep. I’m there.

Kombucha: A tart and tangy beverage made from fermented tea, kombucha is a great vegan source of probiotics.

So, keep an eye out for these new products and load up your cart with the probiotics you need to keep healthy!

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

Get to Know Your Bacteria

Okay. We throw a lot of probiotics 4-1-1 at you and it may be hard to keep up with all the new information floating around out there. (We try really hard not to bury you in medical-ese!)  So, we at Probulin thought it might be time for a refresher course. Below is a list of helpful bacteria to be on the lookout for!

Lactobacillus acidophilus

L. bulgaricus

L. casei

L. johnsonii

L. reuteri

Bifidobacterium lactis

B. breve

B. infantis

B. longum

Streptococcus thermophilus

Certain foods already contain the probiotics listed above. Here’s a cheat sheet to take to the supermarket!

  • Yogurt | Lactobacillus bulgaricus, Streptococcus, thermophilus, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacteria
  • Cheese | Lactobacillus strains (like Gouda in the picture left)
  • Kefir | Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria
  • Pickles, sauerkraut, miso,  and kimchi |Lactobacillus

Hope this helps gets you pointed in the right direction!

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

Probiotics Put a Smile on Your Face!

Next time you’re feeling low –  instead of reaching for that box of chocolates – you might want to grab a handful of lactobacilli. Research has found that probiotics containing that particular strain of bacteria may help boost your mood!

Certain bacteria like lactobacilli and bifidobacteria can act as neurotransmitters between your gut and your brain. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that help your nerves communicate with the rest of your body. This can have positive results on your mental health. Studies in mice show that gut flora – all that bacteria that lives in your intestines – is linked to the amount of serotonin (a feel-good chemical) in the blood stream; this directly affects your mood and mental well-being. Read more on this research HERE.

The good bacteria in Probulin has been linked to a variety of physical health benefits. With this new information on the table, probiotic users have one more thing to smile about!

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

Probiotics Keep You Healthy!

It’s that time of year when you feel as if someone around you is always sick. From snot-dripping co-workers to vomiting kids to coughs that sound like you’re surrounded by seals. Thankfully, probiotics are well-studied for their immune properties and and you’ll certainly be glad of that right now.

And employers, take heart! Studies have shown that people miss less time from work when they’re taking probiotics (one of our earlier blogs highlighted a study that showed the same thing in a daycare setting). A 2005 study in Sweden looked at 181 adults to see if taking probiotics could reduce workplace absences. With a test and placebo group (in other words, the participants didn’t know if they were getting probiotics or a substitute), the study found that workers taking L. reuteri probiotics had fewer absenteeisms (10.6% number of workers absent versus 26.4% in the placebo group) and a lower frequency of sick days.

Now if that doesn’t make you sit up and throw away the Kleenex, I don’t know what will!

Go with your gut,

Probulin Team

It’s not that I don’t WANT to take my Probulin – I just forget!

Getting in the habit of taking medicine every day is tough. My Probulin, vitamins and a few other meds sit in their containers on the counter, taunting me with all the times I just plain rush out the door and forget them.

Here are some hints for setting yourself up to succeed in taking your daily probiotics:

  • Create a routine. Take your medicine and supplements at the same time every day, and if possible, connect it to an event (such as brushing your teeth, drinking your morning coffee, etc.).
  • Set an alarm clock, timer or your watch alarm to remind yourself it’s time to take medicines. (I do this with one dose that happens in mid-afternoon that I could never remember!)
  • Set up a pill box with all your meds in it. Seeing this pillbox on the counter (assuming no children are around) is a good reminder to take your medicine. And, if you’re like me, sometimes I look at my medicine and think, “Did I take that this morning?” Now, you’ll know for sure.
  • If you really have problems remembering to take your meds, ask your doctor if you can simplify the process. For instance, my doctor gave me a once-daily antibiotic because he knew that I struggled to get all three down when he gave me a different pill. (This doesn’t really work for your probiotics. . . )
  • Put a reminder note somewhere prominent. I’ve been known to stick a note on the front door, in HUGE PRINT, to remind myself of things.

And as a side note, don’t forget to tell your doctor all the medicines that you take, including over-the-counter medicines and supplements (including your Probulin).

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

Face the World with Probiotics

It’s like Mom use to say: True beauty comes from within. And guess what! What lives in our guts may show in our faces. Some research suggests that an imbalance in gut flora can be linked to the production of blemishes. The toxins from bad bacteria actually seem to promote breakouts.

Traditional treatments, such as antibiotics, kill off the good as well as bad bacteria, further throwing your system’s balance out of whack. A steady regimen of Probulin may help to maintain a healthy ratio of good bacteria and reduce breakouts. In fact, this was first written about in the 1960s when Dr. R.H. Siver was doing a study with patients with gastrointestinal problems and treating them with probiotics. He noticed one side effect was that their skin cleared up… So while there’s not a lot of definitive research, it’s hard to ignore the connection between what bacteria is doing in your gut and your skin health!

When it’s time to let your inner beauty shine out, research sure is suggesting that probiotics may be valuable in helping you put your best face forward.

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

India – Moving Ahead to Recommend Probiotics

The most-studied area where probiotics help you is in your gut – and particularly in preventing diarrhea. We’ve tackled this smelly subject in other blog posts, for example our post titled “It’s An Ugly Subject… But We’re Brave!

An article in an India newspaper talked about all the evidence that probiotics help prevent diarrhea in patients who take antibiotics (remember from our previous blog that antibiotics, in their efforts to kill off the bad bacteria also kill off the good bacteria, which causes the diarrhea and stomach upset). Right now, the article said, it’s rare for doctors to prescribe probiotics as an antidote to antibiotic-induced diarrhea. One Indian doctor, an expert in probiotics, estimates that 1.4 million of the 9 million child deaths in her country in 2008 could be attributed to diarrhea.

Now, the National Institute of Nutrition in India has put together guidelines for probiotics in the country, requiring them to list exactly what’s in the probiotic, to use only evidence-based health claims and other information that we have on our Probulin label like serving size and proper storage.

They’re hoping to encourage doctors to use probiotics more frequently, particularly in treating diarrhea.

It’s nice to have a little control over your health, isn’t it?

 

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team

The Most Popular New Year’s Resolution (and the Hardest!!): Losing Weight

With 2012 underway, most of us are charging into the New Year with new ambitions. Of course, one of the more common goals we set for ourselves: lose the love handles. Research shows there may be a link between probiotics and reaching that healthier weight.

In a controlled study in 2010, Lactobacillus gasseri SBT2055 was found to have contributed to Body Mass Index reduction— including that hard-to-lose fat around the middle. (BMI is a calculation that takes into account a person’s body fat, height and weight.) You can check out this study HERE.

The microbial population in an obese individual’s gut is different than in a thin one,  according to Dr. Jeffery Gordon at the University of Washington. Once an overweight person reaches a healthier BMI, his or her gut flora composition shifts to that of a thin person.

Prebiotics – remember, these are the foods that help probiotics work better –  may also play a role in weight management through modulating hormones. There’s a rather challenging read for those without medical degrees HERE that examines how prebiotics and probiotics may help with weight control.

Adding prebiotics and probiotics, like Probulin, to your daily routine may help you achieve greater success in reaching your weight management goals. Here’s to 2012 and achieving all your resolutions!

Go with your gut,

The Probulin Team