When many people hear “bacteria”, they quickly give it a negative connotation. After all, some bacteria cause infections, sickness, and other illnesses and diseases. However, that negative connotation is not always true, especially for your digestive system, which contains a large amount of bacteria, which ultimately become good, and used for many important purposes.
Our digestive tract has about 400 different kinds of bacteria and yeast, such as the Lactobacillus acidophilus and other members of the Lactobacillus family. They can serve as an important role in our health.
It is speculated that acidophilus is a probiotic bacteria, because it aids in maintaining our intestinal health. In addition, acidophilus functions as a natural antibiotic against possibly harmful organisms. By taking acidophilus, it will help you maintain your normal equilibrium of beneficial bacteria in the intestines and, if female, vagina.
One source of acidophilus is yogurt. Yogurt is long valued and consumed for its nutritional and therapeutic benefits. But, there are some variances in the amounts of acidophilus found in yogurt. Some brands of yogurt may contain none at all, which makes it difficult to obtain dependable amounts. To fix this, some commercial manufacturers of yogurt add the active culture after pasteurization, a heating process that kills and ruins the unwanted and beneficial organisms.
Other source of acidophilus are plants, such as wheat, barley, onions, tomatoes, bananas, garlic, and honey (according to an article published in “Journal of Food Science” in 2012).
Acidophilus supplements are also an effective option. They are sold in health-food stores. They are often combined with Bifidobacteria, that is also a probiotic.
Multiple health benefits come from consuming acidophilus. Some take it to help against digestive disorders, vaginal infections, or other similar illnesses. Many studies reported that it betters immunity, and may suppress the toxic effects of carcinogens, or cancer-causing agents.
But, acidophilus is mostly used to prevent and then calm irritable bowel syndrome, with numerous gastrointestinal symptoms, like abdominal bloating, cramping, and even diarrhea. In addition, this organism will help relieve diarrhea, reduce build-up of gas, and conflict with vaginal yeast, as well as other infections, especially connected with Candida (a yeast that usually lives in our body), work to help fight urinary tract infections, stop bad breath, and promote more efficient digestion.
The most popular form acidophilus comes in form of capsule or powder, but also can be sold as a tablet, suppository, liquid, and douche. It is available at most health, food, and nutrition stores.
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When taking the supplement, it’s important to remember the dose. Adults need to take capsules as directed on the bottle. Children can use capsules, if able to swallow, otherwise they can be given one teaspoon of the powder once a day, in a beverage or food. Infants should be made a paste, using water or breast milk, and have it rubbed in their mouth once a day, or given a teaspoon in their milk, if bottle-fed.