After extensively researching probiotics I have only one thing to say…poor consumers! Take the 14-day challenge with Activia, orgain immunity with DanActive, or even chew these acidophilus tablets, which guarantees one billion organisms – does this sound like prime time television commercials? Are these products sitting in your fridge? If so, I dedicate this post to you.
First of all, probiotics are defined as live microorganisms (bacteria) that provide health benefits when they are consumed in sufficient amounts. They can be found in foods, such as yogurt and miso (fermented soybean paste), and are sold in capsules and powders. According to the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organizations, the World Health Organizations and the American Academy of Microbiology there is no reproducible scientific evidence that shows that the alteration of microorganisms in the human body has any major, long-lasting, or positive health effects. In other words, food products such as Activia and DanActive, which are directed towards replacing or reconstituting the bacteria in our intestine, are unfortunately a marketing ploy!
However, before I beat up on probiotics I should point out that they are known to treat a number of human ailments but only following catastrophic changes to the large intestine such as: diarrhea in children, antibiotic-associated diarrhea and preventing travelers’ diarrhea that afflicts many individuals traveling to less developed nations.
In conclusion, I’m not advising you to stop buying yogurt, just think twice before reaching for the expensive name brand 14-day challenge stuff – I promise you your friendly intestinal bacteria is happy with the no-name brand stuff. Of course if you’ve been sick then it’s a different story, so talk to your doctor. Now, that saved $2 can go towards a frappuccino treat at Starbucks.
Image courtesy of _ viviandnguyen