Bacteria, Probiotics and Your Health
the antibacterial soaps and sterilizing hand gels on the market
today, you might be tricked into believing that all bacteria
are bad and could potentially cause disease in your body.
Bacteria, however, can also be beneficial to your health,
and it’s important to understand the distinction between
beneficial bacteria and harmful bacteria. Friendly bacteria,
also known as probiotics, are essential to your good health.
There are more friendly bacteria (mostly in the form of probiotics
in your digestive tract) in your body than the total number
of your own cells. Since probiotics are friendly bacteria,
they are not parasites living off your body’s nutrients
for free. Instead, they pay “rent” by giving your
body what it needs to survive.
How do friendly
bacteria, or probiotics, benefit your health and well being?
They protect you from getting sick, and they also help you
to heal if your health is damaged. Here are some benefits
you can receive from friendly, probiotic bacteria:
- They manufacture nutrients
like B vitamins
- They help you digest
- Friendly bacteria and
probiotics are able to kill bad, disease-causing bacteria
- They improve the efficiency
of your digestive tract
- They have been used
to treat diarrhea, urinary tract infections, yeast infections,
irritable bowel syndrome, and more
The use of
friendly bacteria, probiotics, and good bacteria (depending
on what you want to call them) has been around for centuries.
Fermented foods and milk products have been providing friendly
bacteria and probiotics to humans since ancient times. Today
you can find friendly bacteria and probiotics in yogurt, milk
products, juices, and pill-form supplements. It appears friendly
bacteria and probiotics will be around for a long time in
the future, as sales of these health foods have tripled since