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What are Probiotics / What are Enzymes? Description, Benefits, Uses, Safety, Side Effects, Dosage, & Function of Probiotics and Enzymes.
Probiotics consists of "pro", supporting or favoring, and "biotic, pertaining to life or specific life conditions. The opposite of "anti", opposing or neutralizing.
A "probiotic" or "probiotics", are micro-organisms, specific bacteria, fungi and yeasts that are a natural, necessary, component of the digestive tract. They are beneficial to our body and an integral part of our immune system. These microorganisms form a living colony (a microbiome), that live within us and line our digestive tract, in a symbiotic (mutually beneficial) relationship with us.They work together, assisting with digestion, nutrient uptake and immune defense. This microbiome is destroyed by "antibiotics" and toxins, that are present in our environment. As a result, the beneficial symmetry of the digestive lining gets disrupted and disease processes begin in small increments, usually starting with symptoms like indigestion, gas, bloating and heartburn/acid reflux. Sometimes these preliminary warning signs are ignored or other symptoms such as depression, loss of energy, brain fog and food or other allergies appear. If an imbalance of the digestive flora persists, a galaxy of possible symptoms can manifest, and a progression of ailments can follow, as the immune system becomes compromised.
Our "friendly flora" need to be replenished to maintain the health of our digestive tract. They are necessary for our bodies to maintain good health and for nutrient uptake. Probiotics are recommended for all gastrointestinal problems or complaints and are absolutely essential to your general health.
As an infant we are inoculated with beneficial bacteria and yeast from our mothers, while passing through the birth canal or during the intimate contact between mother and infant while nursing. These natural probiotics coat the body and the entire tract of our system, from the ear canals to the anus, with the majority residing in the intestinal tract. These friendly micro-organisms when in balance, create a microbiome, a living colony, made up of many different bacterial and yeast cultures that work together and act as one. This symbiote creates a lining in the digestive tract that assists with digestion and synthesis of "B" complex and "K" vitamins. It supports our immune system by destroying toxins, improving resistance to allergens, producing anti-carcinogens (cancer fighting agents) and creating natural antibiotics that kill disease causing bacteria and pathogens.* Sometimes fungi are included in probiotics and many times are referred to as "soil organisms" or "Homeostatic probiotics". (See below for a further information on soil organisms.)
The beneficial micro-organisms in our body, when in balance, assist and support us. Diets high in sugar and refined foods and low in fresh vegetables and fruits, set the stage for an imbalance of flora. This equilibrium is disturbed most when we ingest antibiotics from a doctor or through a food source such as eggs, chicken, pork, beef or cows milk, it kills many, if not all of the beneficial bacteria along with some pathogens. The die off causes an imbalance that creates an opportunity for the yeast that makes up a natural part of our microbiome to multiply and grow with little or no resistance.
The colony of probiotic bacteria that reside in a healthy human intestinal system, can contain as many as three pounds of various species of micro-organisms. This colony varies in mass and number of individual organisms depending on the original colonization acquired while nursing from your mother, the place you reside on the planet and your size. Some of the non-pathogenic micro-organisms common to your locale and soil, generally end up colonizing your intestine and are responsive to the pathogens of your region. This natural selection keeps your immune system tuned to the harmful disease causing agents of your surroundings.
With all probiotics, there is some degradation of the bacteria when encountering stomach acid. But the majority of bacteria endure the travel through the stomach and into the intestinal tract intact. Through out history people have consumed fermented (probiotic laced) foods, such as sauerkraut, yogurt, miso, kim chee, and kefir, while still benefiting from the beneficial bacteria present within those foods. So there is no need to worry about the viability of the bacteria with stomach acid.
Immune compromised persons or those with very small children should seek the advice of a qualified health care practitioner. The Probiotics lactobacilli and bifidobacteria are a natural part of a healthy bio-film. This colony is found in one form or another with all healthy mammals. When we are healthy they reside on our skin and in the passageways of our body that connect to the outer world (ear canals to anus). They make up the first line of defense for our immune system. Many species of probiotic bacteria are an integral part of the production of fermented foods and have been safely consumed by humanity throughout history. Yogurt, Kefir, Sauerkraut, Kim Chee and Miso are some of the foods consumed today with the benefit of these natural health enhancing and disease fighting organisms. Many dairy products including buttermilk, butter, sour cream, cheese and some milk based infant formulas are initiated or enhanced with a variety of bacterial strains. Clinical trials have found a broad range of Probiotics to be safe for consumers.
Side effects are not common and are temporary but may appear initially. They generally are gas and boating. Occasionally someone may experience some mild cramping as the intestinal lining sloughs off the thick buildup of sludge that can accumulate as a result of poor diet choices and impede the villi, hair like structures that are responsible for nutritional uptake and digestive flow. Starting out with a lower dose and slowly building up to the recommended dose usually prevents side effects.
The recommended dosage is three capsules daily, before bed on an empty stomach. We recommend that anyone that has not been on Probiotics in the past, start with one a day for three to seven days, after you determine you have no side effects or any temporary side effects subside, then increase to two a day, wait three to seven days and then increase to three a day. Paying attention to your body and what it is telling you is your best indicator on dosage and time of day to take Probiotics. Some people have reported that first thing in the morning is best for them, others need food with any supplement they ingest. It is always best to try the recommended approach first and then adjust as you determine for yourself what works best for you.
Prebiotics are a type of soluble fiber made up of carbohydrates which are simple sugars (Ogliosaccharides) found in many vegetables. They nourish the beneficial bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, but do not stimulate the growth of pathogens like candida. Prebiotics also assist mineral absorption, improve bowel pH and cleanse the colon of debris. Often prebiotics are added to probiotics to encourage proliferation of the colonizing intestinal bacteria.
These are helpful fungal organisms, that do not take up residence in the digestive tract but are used as heavy artillery against pathogens and are cleansed from our system. These are some of the same organisms that live in garden soil and naturally attach to vegetables. They have been an integral part of the life and health of our planet from very early in it's evolution. Many, if not all soil organisms, are missing from our diets as the result of industrial food processing and preservation methods such as irradiation.
Probiotic bacteria are extracted from natural sources, and the media they are cultured on will depend on the specific bacteria. Some are cultivated by enzymatically treating fibrous plant tissue, others are grown on cultures.
Our probiotics are dried and in a quiescent/inactive state. Probiotic viability is maintained when bottles are stored at ambient (room) temperatures for up to 12 months. Refrigerating probiotics will extend viability, extending our products ability to activate, for an additional period of time depending on variabilities. They are activated/come alive when ingested or by being placed in a warm moist environment.
When traveling, we recommend you keep probiotics with your toiletries, and store them buried in the center of your travel bag where temperature fluctuations will be minimized. Try to prevent exposure to direct sunlight or excessive heat. Exposure to higher temperatures can cause degradation of the probiotics, but usually nothing significant in the length of time it takes to use a bottle. The benefits of having them and taking them far out-weigh the alternatives.
Note: This information is to illustrate how a simple organism can influence the behavior of a much more complex host. We are NOT suggesting that our products can or should be used in any way, to rid the body of protazoa or flukes.
Toxoplasma gondi is a species of parasitic protozoa and Dicrocoelium dentriticum is a lancet fluke. They are parasitic organisms that have life cycles which involve a host or multiple hosts and have the ability to manipulate the behavior of their hosts with proteins or other chemical substances that can cross the blood-brain barrier. “Toxoplasmosis is strongly linked with development of psychosis, depression, anxiety disorders, reckless behavior and impulsivity in youth.”
What is significant about both of them is how they influence (or manipulate) the actions of a host to their advantage.
Toxoplasma gondi's first host is a mouse but it must enter a cat to sexually reproduce. The pathogen changes the behavior of mice, which naturally fear open spaces and the odor of cat urine. By secreting specific proteins, the protazoa can alter a mouse's behavior, causing it to expose itself in open spaces and exhibit no fear of cat urine odor, which increases the mouse's probability of being eaten by a cat.
Dicrocoelium dentriticum's first host is a snail, which shed slime balls harboring reproductive cysts that are eaten by ants. But in order to reproduce, it must enter a sheep, goat or other warm blooded animal. The fluke will influence the behavior of an ant to continually climb a blade of grass, relentlessly, again and again, to increase the probability of it being consumed by the next desired host.
These two examples of how simple organisms can influence their host, are well understood. There are certainly others that have not yet been puzzled out.
What is meaningful about this, is that most people with Candida infestations crave sweets or carbohydrates, like white bread and pasta. But when the Candida is under control, or in balance with the other micro-organisms in our digestive tract, the craving diminishes or disappears.
If you understand that micro organisms can communicate with each other and influence behavior in other species, what makes you think that you are not being influenced in your food choices? What sort of disease processes are being initiated by a pathogen and it's effluent within our bodies?
Enzymes are protein molecules that are catylists, they carry a vital energy factor needed to enable every chemical action and reaction that occurs in our body. Made up of amino acids, they work differently than pure chemical catalysts. They make chemical reactions more efficient, and thus faster, by reducing the activation energy needed to initiate chemical reactions throughout the body. There are several thousand different enzymes found in the human body. These enzymes can combine with coenzymes (non-protein molecules) to form nearly 100,000 various chemicals that enable us to see, hear, feel, move, digest food and think. Every organ, every tissue, and all the cells in our body depend upon the reaction of enzymes and their energy factor. Enzymes are responsible for digestion, absorption, transporting, metabolizing, and eliminating the waste of nutrients. Again, every organ, every tissue, and the approximate 100 trillion cells in our body depends upon the reaction of enzymes and their energy factor.
Supplemental enzymes are enzymes that have been extracted in some manner, from either plants, animals, or fungi, and are given in addition to a normal diet. Pepsin (an enzyme that breaks down proteins) was among the first enzymes used by doctors to aid with protein digestion. Pepsin is extracted from the stomach of pigs and requires a very low pH (acid) to be used by the body. It is also used in skin products for exfoliation and is the active ingredient in meat tenderizers. Another enzyme supplement, Ox Bile, is made from the pancreas of slaughterhouse animals, which can not only digest proteins, but carbohydrate and fats as well. However, these pancreatic enzymes work best in a high pH (alkaline) environment, which is present in the duodenum. Pancreatic enzymes will not work in the acidic stomach and don't perform pre-digestion. There is little need to take these supplemental enzymes for digestive purposes. In order for supplemental enzymes to be effective, they must be able to help with pre-digestion in the upper stomach (fundus). The digestive enzymes protease, amylase, cellulase and lipase work throughout the entire digestive system.
Cooked foods cause drastic changes in the size and appearance of the pituitary gland. Research has found that enzymes affect our hormone producing glands and hormones influence our enzyme levels. The causes that are associated with hormonal imbalances in the endocrine system have been shown to respond favorably to enzyme therapy.* The lack of metabolic enzymes will definitely affect the secretions of the pituitary gland, which could lead to insomnia. Producing enzymes to assist in the digestion of enzyme depleted cooked food eventually depletes the pancreas and strains the ability of the thyroid and pituitary gland to produce metabolic and systemic enzymes that are needed to detoxify, build and repair the body. As a result our body becomes sluggish and weight is gained. Raw food calories are relatively non-stimulating to glands and stabilize body weight more so than cooked food calories.
Yes. There is a connection between the strength of our immune system and our enzyme level. The more enzymes we have, the stronger our immune system will be and the healthier and stronger we will be.* For example, leukocytes (white blood cells) have eight (8) different amylase enzymes which assists the white blood cell to engulf foreign substances and reduce them to a form that the body can eliminate. Research has shown that leukocytes increase after one has eaten a cooked meal. This indicates a definite compensatory measure on the part of the body to transport more enzymes to the digestive tract for digestion. There is no increase in leukocytes after one has consumed a raw food meal. Research has shown that enzymes are related to all diseases via the immune system, whether the disease is acute or chronic. If the pancreatic output of enzymes is hindered, the whole body is affected. Therefore, we must eat raw foods or take supplemental enzymes to enable our body's immune system to fight against infections.*
Note: The information in this website is provided for your knowledge and is not a substitute for professional medical advice/care. Seek qualified professional help for serious questions pertaining to your health.
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food an Drug Administration. This product and information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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