Probiotics for Dirt? What a Great Idea!

Bokashi is a Japanese term meaning ‘fermented organic matter,’ and what it means for those of us who know about probiotics is a way to compost using bacteria. We spend most of our time here at Probulin concerned with the impact of good bacteria on our bodies and health – it was really cool to find out how those little microorganisms are being used in other ways!

Bokashi means taking a bucket, adding bacteria (usually in the form of purchased bran) and organic waste (think left overs you forgot about in the fridge). You let it sit for about two weeks and you have compost. There’s very little smell to this process, which makes it perfect for apartment dwellers or those who are smell challenged.

There are several websites selling the bran that contains the microorganisms and that talk about how to do this process in your home or even in your office. (One is here.  http://www.bokashicomposting.com/) One of the positives of bokashi composting is that it is able to handle egg shells, citrus, meats and other items that don’t work well when you compost with worms.

Research into using bokashi compost has found that the rapid preparation time (just two to four weeks, versus much longer times – even six months – for composting with worms) and the end product’s viability are great resources for your garden.

According to a report found here http://www.reap-canada.com/bio_and_climate_3_4.htm, “ Research with peanut crops has shown that crops treated with Bokashi fertilizer had higher growth rates, increased nodulation and higher yield than crops treated with chemical fertilizer.”

What a great, non-smelly way to use microorganisms to make your life – and our planet – better!

Go with Your Gut,

The Probulin Team

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Getting All the Probiotic Brains Together

Next month is a big event for all of us involved in the probiotics world – the International Probiotics Association World Congress. This event, which occurs every two years, is in Los Angeles April 20-21.

For two days, researchers, regulatory officials, manufacturers, and healthcare providers gather to attend scientific and regulatory seminars, network and generally find a forum to exchange knowledge. Each conference day is geared for unique audiences. On Day 1, manufacturers, probiotic research and development scientists, brand marketers, industry consultants, and regulatory officials will hear from renowned experts on emerging areas of probiotic research, international regulation and recommendations to improve the status of probiotics as non-prescription dietary aids.

The International Probiotics Association (IPA) has members equally divided between industry and academia, and its goal is to provide a unique forum for the exchange of research and the latest breakthroughs in probiotic technology and new product development.

It will be interesting to see what news comes out of this conference. There have been many advances in probiotics research and regulatory issues worldwide since the last one. We’ll keep you updated!

 

Go with your Gut,

The Probulin Team

Shrimp Farms Utilize Probiotics

FACT: The major importers for shrimp into the U.S. are Thailand, China, Vietnam, India and Indonesia. ~USDA Aquaculture Statistics

Are you a seafood fan? Here in the Midwest seafood is a little hard to come by (hence Red Lobster and Long John Silvers chains). But despite not being near the sea for the fresh catch of the day, seafood has many healthy benefits.  So if allergies for shellfish aren’t standing in your way, be sure to add some fish to your diet a couple of times a week.

Give Bubba Gump Some Lovin’

One of my favorite types of seafood is shrimp. Now I don’t know, or haven’t paid attention to, whether my shrimp from the grocery store is caught from the ocean or is bred in an aquaculture (aka shrimp farm).

FACT: It’s predicted by 2020 up to 50 percent of our seafood worldwide will come from fish farms, as estimated by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the U.S. ~LiveStrong.com

David Moriarity of The University of Queensland, in his presentation in 1999 to the International Symposium on Microbial Ecology, stated probiotics can be beneficial in reducing bad bacteria and rates of infection within shrimp aquaculture farms.

Probiotics for Creatures Big & Small

Consider our use of antibiotics… an overuse of such drugs can cause the body to react by building immunity to the helpful antibiotics. Over time, we become immune to antibiotics because we’ve grown resistant to the bacteria being used to fight off infections. Probiotics not only reduce the rate of infection, but now even doctors are starting to prescribe probiotics with antibiotics in order to prevent resistance to the drugs, and get us feeling better faster.

Similar occurrence with shrimp: the tanks they are bred in have recently had problems repopulating at such great numbers due to bacterial infections.

What does this have to do with us (humans)?

Remember that saying “you are what you eat.” Shrimp alone do not provide any probiotics for us, they don’t naturally produce the good bacterium by themselves. Turns out if we eat shrimp that has been feed high doses of antibiotics, we are more likely to grow resistant to certain strains of antibiotics. So feeding probiotics to shrimp and keeping their bacteria balanced indirectly benefits us and our immunity.

Despite the health benefits we get from seafood, it is still suggested that we take probiotics on a daily basis. Check out NutraCenter’s line of digestive health products and get started balancing your microflora (intestinal bacterial levels) today!

Go with your gut,

Probulin Team

This article was originally posted on the NutraCenter blog on March 15, 2012. It has been reposted here with permission by the author.

Celiac Disease and Probiotics – Emerging Research

In Kansas, we love the rolling waves of grain and enjoy watching farmers harvest wheat. But if you have Celiac Disease, you may not be so enthusiastic about the gluten factor…

We’ve mentioned (and you’re probably sick of hearing about it!) how exciting it is to see the research being done on probiotics. While much is still in the mouse stage (being tested on mice and not on humans yet), the data is showing the promise of probiotics.

Celiac disease – which is basically an allergic reaction to gluten found in wheat, oats and other foods – is an autoimmune condition that’s essentially inflammatory. When you have CD, your immune system attacks your small intestine.

Studies have shown that taking probiotics may help lessen the severity of CD in several respects – reducing inflammation and heal the intestinal barrier. But new research, still done only in mice, was reported in the journal Laboratory Investigation, indicating that probiotics may help prevent the onset of CD.

Check out “Can Probiotics Prevent the Development of Celiac Disease?” article that talks about all the implications of this research.

More than 3 million people in this country have celiac disease and the numbers are on the rise. There’s no real explanation as to why the surge in this autoimmune disease, but if probiotics could do something to slow that increase, it would be terrific.

What’s great about probiotics is that even as our scientists are putting their brains to getting evidence-based research completed, we can still take the supplements. For most people – aside from a few with compromised immune systems – probiotics will do no harm, and there’s already evidence from human trials that they help with many gut problems.

So take your daily Probulin and know that you’re probably getting a lot of side benefits – like fighting Celiac Disease – that will only be proven in the future!

Go with your Gut,

The Probulin Team

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Hang with the Popular Gang!

Love this article on the Natural Products Expo in Anaheim – where all the people who care about natural foods gather to market products, share information and generally enjoy an industry that is growing dramatically every year.

Author Leon Kaye talks about how the big, shining star at the expo this year was probiotics. . . in everything. From gum to mints to supplements and foods, probiotics are showing up everywhere.

Last year, he said, Greek yogurt and coconut water were the biggies, but hands down, probiotics won this year.

Excuse me while we here at Probulin take a minute to gloat. It’s nice to see that the United States is starting to understand something that many other countries have known for some time – the bacteria in our gut and throughout our bodies has a tremendous impact on our health.

Want to get in on the action? Check out Profresh Mints probiotic mint – take once daily for a brighter, whiter smile. Not to mention it gives you fresh breath, how can anyone resist?!

Go with your Gut,

The Probulin Team

Dairy product for seniors in the works

A New Zealand dairy processor, Fonterra, is working to utilize its knowledge and research about probiotics to create nutritional products for senior citizens, building off its established line of infant nutrition products. (For the full article: http://www.dairyreporter.com/Markets/Fonterra-cross-leverages-infant-nutrition-expertise-to-capture-senior-nutrition-trend)

Fonterra representatives told DairyReporter.com that they have all the great nutritional information needed for such a product, and would like to “cross-leverage” it into the market for older citizens.

There already are lots of studies about the possible impacts probiotics have on people as they age. One thing we know for sure is the bacteria in our gut changes as we age. Initial research into numerous areas shows promise for many of the health challenges we face as we get older. For instance, heart problems, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.

Let’s look at milk proteins: they have properties that help fight high blood pressure. Probiotic enzymes break down milk proteins into useable components. Animal studies have shown that the probiotic Lactobacilli can actually reduce blood pressure.

Good job, Fonterra, for utilizing your knowledge and research to move into a market that can share the benefits of probiotics with even more people!

Go with your gut,

Probiotic Team

This article was originally posted on DrChalla.com by Dr. Shekhar Challa on Mar 5, 2012. With permission by the author we have reposted it on Probulin.com.

Makin’ It Through the Gut

One of the challenges of creating a probiotic like Probulin that we want to be effective and the best possible supplement to help our customers – that’s you! – is making sure the bacteria stays alive until it gets where it needs to go: your intestines.

Your stomach acids are pretty tough and darned good at tearing up whatever is put in there, whether it arrives in food or in a health supplement. (Unless you were one of those kids who ate pennies, and those probably passed right on through!) The highest quality probiotics are tested in a “simulated acid environment” to make sure the capsule survives the challenging stomach environment.

Probulin uses special gastric bypass technology, designed especially for us, to make sure most of the bacteria run the gamut of your stomach acid and are able to go to work in your intestines. This proprietary process minimizes the loss of bacteria to the harsh stomach acid; the probiotics are not released until after the capsule leaves the stomach.

That means those good bacteria get where they’re intended to go – and they can do the most good for you there!

Go with Your Gut,

The Probulin Team