Probiotics 101 by Dr. Bryan W. Scott 04/29/10

The human body consists of 100 trillion cells with the vast majority (90%) being bacteria. These bacteria that normally line the walls of our intestinal tract are called good bacteria or your normal flora.  These good bacteria are essential for the production of vitamins, the production of energy, protection from bad bacteria, and proper functioning of our immune system.

There is a symbiotic relationship between our bodies and the bacteria that live within us.  Dysbosis is the imbalance between our good bacteria and the bad bacteria that lives within us.

Our normal flora produce vitamins such as:

  • Vitamin B3 (NIACIN)
  • Vitamin B12
  • Biotin
  • Folic Acid
  • Vitamin K

Good Bacteria

Good bacteria in our bodies produce energy.  Some of these good bacteria produce short chain fatty acids (acetic acid, propionic acid, and butyric acid) that provide 5 – 10% of our energy especially for the epithelial cells that line the GI tract.  Butyric acid for example helps to maintain balance in the intestines and inhibit the growth colon cancer cells.

The good bacteria in our bodies protect us from bad bacteria.

They do this is multiple ways such as

  • They produce peroxidases and bacteriocins that kill bad bacteria
    • Lactobacillus produce hydrogen peroxide, carbon dioxide, and di acetyl which are detrimental to food borne pathogens
    • Bacteroides produce toxins that destroy disease causing C. Diff
  • They compete with bad bacteria for nutrients
  • They compete with bad bacteria for binding sites on the intestinal wall (competitive inhibition)

The good bacteria in our bodies are also essential for a properly functioning immune system.  70 % of our immune system in found in our GI tract.  Imbalances between good and bad bacteria can lead to increases in allergies, leaky gut syndrome, and conditions that have an auto immune component such as rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and more.

Good Bacteria vs. Bad Bacteria

The process of obtaining a normal balance between good and bad bacteria begins at birth.  As we travel down the vaginal tract of our mothers, we are colonized with good bacteria.  Children born by c-section often times have lower amounts of good bacteria.  The other way we obtain a healthy amount of good bacteria is through breast feeding.  Breast milk contains whey protein and “bifidus factor.”  These two proteins appear to stimulate the growth of good bacteria like bidobacteria, while formula milk typically contains casein and this animal protein does NOT stimulate the growth of good bacteria.

In fact children that are born by c – section or are not breast fed as infants have lower levels of good bacteria in their stool at birth, as infants, as children when compared to children born through vaginal delivery and those that were breast fed.  The low levels of good bacteria extend through out life.

The good news is that if you feel that you have an imbalance between good bacteria quality probiotics can help.  Probiotics are supplements that provide good bacteria.

Not all probiotic supplements are created equal.  That’s right.   Probiotics are evaluated by 2 separate criteria:

  • Amount of live bacteria per capsule
    • Probiotic supplements are not measured in mg or mcg, rather in CFUs (Colony Forming Units)
    • The higher the better
  • Types of bacteria in the capsule
    • Unless used for a specific disease state or condition the more different strains of good bacteria present in each capsule the better

Colony Forming Units (CFUs)

This number represents the number of live bacteria cells per capsule

The higher this number the better the probiotic supplement


Many companies list the CFUs that are present at the time of manufacturing

Because these are live cells if they are not shipped and stored properly…THEY WILL DIE off and the amount present when you take them is no where near what is stated on the label.

One Wellness Place Probiotics

CFUs are guaranteed for the entire shelf life of the bottle.

Various strains of bacteria

Typically the more variety of strains of bacteria in the bottle the better the probiotic

This is because there are thousands of different types of good bacteria that line our GI tract and products that contain multiple strains more closely resemble that environment.

One Wellness Place Probiotics

Contain multiple strains of bacteria that have scientific evidence backing their use

Lactobacillus Acidophilus 3.5 Billion CFU *

Bifidobacterium Infantis 3.5 Billlion CFU *

Lactobacillus Plantarium 2 Billion CFU *

Lactobacillus Rhamnosis 2 Billion CFU *

Bifidobacterium Breve 2 Billion CFU *

Bifidobacterium Longum 2 Billlion CFU*

Conditions Helped with Probiotics

The pharmacist and clinical nutritionist have been extremely successful helping people eliminate or control the symptoms of a variety of conditions by using probiotics

Persistent vaginal yeast infections

Eczema / Psoriasis

Chronic Constipation

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Antibiotic Associated Diarrhea

Chron’s Disease / Ulcerative Colitis

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Multiple Sclerosis

Weight Loss

And More!!!

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.