You Have Heard About Probiotics But Do You Know What Prebiotics Are?

When looking at the words prebiotic and probiotic they look very similar, only containing one different letter. They also have similar benefits as their jobs are to improve overall health by starting with digestive health. According to Dr. Shekhar Challa, author of Probiotics for Dummies, and creator of the first Probiotic video game – microwarriorsvideogame.com, probiotics mean “for life.” Probiotics are the good bacteria. Prebiotics are non-digestible food ingredients, like inulin, that stimulate the growth and/or activity of bacteria in the digestive system in ways believed to be beneficial to health and are not consumed by the bad bacteria. Essentially Prebiotics act as food or fuel to Probiotics. Probiotics and Prebiotics worktogether to maintain gut health.

Prebiotic fiber is not affected by heat, cold, acid or time, yet probiotics can be killed by heat, acid or passage of time. Prebiotics nourish the thousands of good bacterial species already living in the colon. Probiotics contain species of bacteria which are added to the colon when ingested.

Probiotics are the beneficial organisms, prebiotics help probiotic bacteria grow and flourish. Prebiotics and probiotics working together are called synbiotics. Now we can understand that prebiotics are the support team to probiotics which maintain our gut health. When Prebiotics and Probiotics are available in the same product it is called a synbiotic. Probulin is a classic example of a synbiotic.

The facts, ma’am… and some stats, research studies…

Here on the Probulin Team, we don’t always agree about what to write about in the blog. There are those of us who want to cite all the research studies out there and those of us who just want to summarize, without including numbers and such. (Guess you could call it the battle of right brain versus left brain thinkers!)

Today, the numbers people won. There’s a great website (click here to visit it  www.probiotic-research.com) that summarizes abstracts of ongoing or completed scientific research studies.

One stuck out among the others. Doctors did a study of 72 patients with severe multiple injuries. Some received a placebo and others received a combination of a probiotic and a prebiotic (called a synbiotic).  The abstract says in conclusion: “Synbiotics contained in the studied formula decrease significantly the risk for sepsis by bloodstream infections and the occurrence of VAP by A. baumannii.”

Translated, VAP is ventilator associated pneumonia, which is a real problem at hospitals. Other studies have also found that probiotics fight off VAP. One, done at Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Neb., said that daily use of probiotics reduced VAP in critically ill patients by almost half. (In the interest of fairness, we want to note that the study patients were carefully selected and probiotics have not been studied for all critically ill patients on the ventilator.)

Half! Even if you don’t like to deal in numbers, you gotta like that number!

For more studies like this, check out the link we mentioned above. . . and, of course, check back  here. Us stats loving people win the fights occasionally and get to fill this blog with some medical talk!

Go with your Gut,

The Probulin Team

Prebiotics: Is that a typo?

Nope, we really mean to say prebiotics and not probiotics. Although you’ve been hearing a lot about probiotics in the media (and certainly on our blog!), prebiotics are starting to get their fair share of attention. Identified in 1995, prebiotics are non-digestible ingredients found in foods that stimulate the growth and/or activity of bacteria that’s already in your digestive system.

So what prebiotics really do is help probiotics work better, feeding them so they grow and flourish. Research is finding that probiotics are more effective when they contain a prebiotic as well (just like Probulin does).

The big three prebiotics are (1) inulin (2) oligofructose, and (3) polydextrose. They’re usually carbohydrates and soluble fibers. Prebiotics:

  • Have healthy bacteria-building potential
  • Have starch and sugar replacement capabilities
  • Improve gut health as fibres or as texturants.

A 2010 research report on prebiotics from UBIC Consulting found that from 1999 to 2010, the U.S. insoluble fibers market grew 120 percent. As research continues to spike on the effectiveness of prebiotics and probiotics, you can expect to see more people adding these important supplements to their diets.

The U.S. already lags behind European countries (and countries like Japan, which has recognized the usefulness of prebiotics since the 1980s) in adding these to our diet. Let’s catch up!

Go with your gut,

The Probiotics Team

Hello Bloggersphere!

Everyone has a passion, a way to get their inner geek on. Whether it be cooking, artwork, music, science or surfing there are always outlets to share your love of (insert favorite pastime) with the world.

Here, we love PROBIOTICS.

Now, we realize the average reader most likely will not understand what a probiotic, prebiotic, or synbiotic is necessarily. But that’s why we are here. Not only are probiotics a fast-growing segment within the health industry, but what is being studied, discovered and produced about these bacterium may affect you in the near future. We are here to discuss those findings & help guide you to your healthiest self yet.

We’ve been researching & compiling notes for years & we are finally ready to let loose. So stay tuned because there is some great information to be covered!

 

Go with your gut,

Probulin Team