There is a hidden world in the intestinal tract that if not balanced properly can be overridden by pathogenic (bad) microbes and cause innumerable infections and diseases. Routine consumption of antibiotics hidden in meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products is a significant contributor to the dysbiosis or unbalance of the good and bad bacteria in the gut. Every year more than 35 million pounds of antibiotics are produced in the United States and their consumption is divided between livestock, poultry and humans. There is an epidemic of antibiotics that people unknowingly eat that could produce resistant bacteria. A study at Rutgers University showed antibiotics at levels deemed safe by the FDA increased the rate at which resistant bacteria emerged from 600 to 2,700 percent.
There is a delicate balance between the healthful and pathogenic microbes in the intestinal microflora that number as high as 100 trillion viable bacteria comprised of 100-400 different bacterial species. The balance is important to be maintained to prevent disease and an accelerated aging process. This is accomplished by employing probiotics. These days, there is no question of whether one needs a probiotic, but which one is best for improving the intestinal microbial balance and what in particular your intestines is fighting and what it may specifically need.
We use a microbiology stool test that helps determine the status of the intestinal tract and can then recommend the right course of treatment. In general, Lactobacillus acidophilus prevents pathogenic bacteria from increasing and healthy bacteria from becoming toxic. Bifidobacteria is another probiotic that has a protective effect. Lactobacilli produces lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide and possibly acetic and benzoic acids. Bifidobacteria produce short-chain fatty acids such as butyric, propionic , acetic, lactic and formic acids; the most plentiful being acetic acid which has a wide range of antimicrobial activity against yeast, molds and bacteria.
There are many other factors that support the intestinal tract. Along with probiotics, fiber, lactoferrin (an iron-binding protein), and lactoperoxidase (an enzyme that occurs in secretions of glands like saliva, tears, bronchial, nasal and intestines) are supportive substances of the microbial balance in the intestinal tract.
Call us for an appointment to have a stool examination for microbiology or go to Lab Tests- Gastrointestinal to have a kit sent to you.