Have you ever wondered how our ancestors managed without medicines to handle their ailments?
Every century has been different and the challenges faced by people have differed. They never had the option of popping pills or being obsessed about cleanliness by using sanitiser instead they spent their time outdoor facing nature which contributed to their body naturally healing themselves. That said, we cannot compare ourselves in this day and age with our ancestors as we now live in a different world.
As a biotechnologist , I have always been fascinated by the working of the human body and what makes it tick. Did you know that each of us is made of up of our own internal ecosystem termed “microbiome” which contains 100 trillion bacteria. That may sound quite scary to the common man as we think that bacteria can be only harmful. In reality our body comprises of trillions of different kind of bacteria which have different purposes with the majority of the bacteria providing health benefits to our body.
While we enjoy all the benefits our modern day life provides us, our current lifestyle and food habits leave a lot to be desired and is in turn affecting our microbiome. We spend more time inside our homes, eat unhealthy junk and processed foods and breathe polluted air which has a long term impact on our health. Luckily enough our microbiome can be adjusted if we are willing to make some changes to our daily routine. Creating a balanced environment of bacteria (around 85% good bacteria and 15% bad bacteria) can help to maintain our microbiome.
Giving us a helping hand in combating our health issues are probiotics. Probiotics are the “good bugs” or scientifically speaking the “live bacteria” which live inside your body with the main purpose of keeping our gut healthy. I would prefer to call them the “Friendly Bacteria” which literally keeps everything inside your digestive system functioning normally. Thanks to the changes in our environment we are not getting enough of this good bacteria from our surroundings and hence leading to health issues in this case, digestive issues. Increasing the amount of probiotics in our body has been known to have a lot of benefits such as good gut health, weight loss, improving mental health, reduces cholesterol and improves immunity.
One of the most common ways we land up taking probiotics is when it prescribed by doctor to be taken along with antibiotics since healthy bacteria can also be killed by the drugs and hence help in maintaining the balance. Other than that there some simple ways to boost our consumption of probiotics such as adding foods which are natural probiotics to our diet such yoghurt and buttermilk. Fermented foods such as sauerkraut, kombucha and kimchi are rich in probiotics and can be easily absorbed by our body. It is not easy to add this kind of food to a daily diet and in many instances the probiotic bacteria which we consume through our food are destroyed even before it reaches our gut.
In this fast paced lifestyle and surroundings, one of the simpler and quicker ways to get our dose of probiotics is by taking them in supplement form. But there is always the doubt as to what is the best and how to choose the right one. There needs to be be more number of clinically documented strains especially from the important Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Streptococcus families as more you ingest the better as each strain has its own different purpose hence better benefits. Look for a count of 1 billion CFU or more per serving on the product label. The method of delivering the probiotics to your gut is equally important. It is also essential to ensure that there is no temperature change during transport of the probiotics as this could cause the bacteria to die.
Being in the Pharmaceutical industry for the last 15 years there are a lot of companies providing probiotics in convenient, shelf-stable supplement forms such as capsules, tablets, sachets and sticks. However my main concern in more of what is inside and how much is it helping me boost my gut health. Dupont is one such name which is known to be an innovative and well established company with excellent long standing reputation in the health ingredient space. Their Nutrition and Health unit offers a range of probiotics strains built on a strong science foundation with focus on quality and safety. This range of probiotics marketed under the name “Howaru” are being offered in a range of clinically documented formulations.
My knowledge is always going to be limited in the face of never ending advancements in the field of science however I believe that education and awareness among consumers need to be broadened.
There is no doubt in my mind that our immunity and well being lies in good gut health and learning a little about how you can strengthen it will be beneficial in the long run.
Disclaimer : This article is intended for informational purposes only.Proper medical advice must be taken before taking any supplements or medication.
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