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How Probiotics Balance Intestinal Ecology and Promote Wellness and Longevity

You cannot be healthy if your cells aren’t healthy. And the health of your cells is critically dependent on what goes into them.

Cells that are properly nourished—that are not constantly attacked by toxins and pathogens—are able to mobilize your natural immune defenses to fight off disease.

But when your cells battle toxins and carcinogens (cancer-causing agents), your immune system becomes overwhelmed. Your cells lose their ability to neutralize toxins on their own. And your over-burdened immune system is unable to counter attack.

This sort of condition—where your cells are continuously staving off attack—is an example of an unbalanced physiological ecosystem. And typical of complex, dynamic systems, the true source of major problems is not the obvious one.

The surprising source of the greatest risk to your health

Many pathogens and carcinogens enter your system through your skin, lungs, mucous membranes and other ports of entry. But the largest source of toxins and cancer causing agents come from a source most people would not expect—your intestines.1

Your intestines (large and small) are home to upwards of 100 trillion live bacteria and other microorganisms—often called the “intestinal flora.” These microorganisms divide into two types: beneficial and harmful.2 And both types are constantly present.

When you’re healthy, beneficial bacteria predominate, playing a vital role in your health.

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They aid digestion, produce nutrients like vitamins B2, B5, and B12 3 and organic acids like lactic acid. These products of beneficial bacteria aid in absorption of other nutrients and produce substances that keep harmful bacteria in proper balance.4

But if the ecological balance in your gut tilts … and harmful, putrefactive bacteria dominate … you are in for serious trouble. Harmful bacteria produce toxic and cancer-causing substances. (fig. 1)

fig.1

“A rogues gallery of harmful bacteria in your intestines” 25
Clostridium perfringens Sudden death and gastrointestinal disease
Bacteroides fragilis Abscesses of brain, liver, neck, myocarditis, osteomyelitis, peritonitis, pneumonia
Salmonella Salmonellosis: diarrhea, fever, and stomach pain 26
Staphylococcus aureus Superficial skin lesions such as boils, styes and recurring boils; more serious infections such as pneumonia, mastitis, phlebitis, meningitis, and urinary tract infections; and deep-seated infections, such as osteomyelitis and endocarditis

“But if the ecological balance in your gut tilts … and harmful, putrefactive bacteria dominate … you are in for serious trouble.”

These substances might not have an immediate detrimental effect, but research is building that demonstrates they are contributing factors to aging, cancers, liver and kidney disease, hypertension, arteriosclerosis, and reduced immunity. 5

Little is known about exactly why this delicate ecological balance can shift in favor of harmful bacteria so suddenly. But a number of factors are known to change the balance in their favor. These factors include surgeries, antibiotic therapy, liver or kidney diseases, anemia, cancer, radiation, immune disorders, emotional and physical stress, aging, poor diet, and poor nutrition.

Bringing balance back to your gut ecosystem

It isn’t difficult to see how important keeping your gut’s ecosystem in balance is. When this ecosystem is disrupted, your entire physiological system is also thrown out of balance.

Toxins and carcinogens produced by putrefactive microorganisms are absorbed by the intestinal walls and into your bloodstream. They’re carried throughout your entire body, creating environments contributing to ill health as they enter individual cells, challenging and overwhelming your immune system … causing short and long term illnesses.6

A number of these toxic factors are powerful oxidizing agents and free radical producers—known agents for swinging the balance in favor of heart diseases, cancers, and Alzheimer’s disease.

The message is clear: Keep your intestinal flora balanced in favor of the good bacteria, and you help keep your entire physiological system in balance. Do that and you lower your risks for these deadly, life-diminishing diseases.

It seems like it should be an easy task. Just decrease the number of harmful bacteria and you have the upper hand. But in reality, it’s more difficult than that. How do you selectively kill just the harmful bacteria?

Antibiotic therapy won’t work. Antibiotics kill off the beneficial bacteria as fast—or faster—than they kill off harmful organisms. And when you take antibiotics, you suffer two unwanted results.

First off, overusing antibiotics selects for the resistant strains. Ultimately, you’ll have stronger, drug-resistant, harmful bacteria in greater numbers inside your intestines.

And second, probably you or someone you know has experienced the side effects of antibiotics: serious stomach problems including cramping and diarrhea. But there’s a potential solution hidden in this particular problem. What do friends tell you if you’re taking antibiotics? Eat yogurt. And this does help … at least a little bit for most people.

The reason yogurt is some help is because it contains one or more types of beneficial bacteria … in most cases it’s a strain of Lactobacillus acidophilus and L. bulgaricus—two of the good bacteria.

This approach to improving your health by ingesting beneficial bacteria is the basis of “probiotics therapy.” The idea is that rather than killing the harmful bacteria, you increase the proportion of beneficial bacteria in your intestinal flora by adding them through supplementation.

The increased amount of beneficial bacteria helps rebalance your gut ecology in favor of the “good guys.” Production of toxins and carcinogens by harmful bacteria is significantly reduced. And balance returns to your total physiological system.

Or so goes the theory. In practice, a probiotic approach dependent on yogurt bacteria (Lactobacillus acidophilus) has a serious drawback. This drawback is why many people do not get relief from yogurt when they take it for antibiotic-induced stomach problems. We’ll return to this problem shortly—with a safe, easy solution.

“Health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
World Health Organization, 1948

First, let’s look at how effective probiotics therapy improves your health by balancing your natural intestinal ecology.

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How good bacteria gain dominance over harmful bacteria

The core idea behind the probiotic approach is to use live, beneficial organisms like Lactobacillus bacteria to balance intestinal ecology. These organisms’ physiology is programmed to maintain the optimal balance in your gut between beneficial and harmful bacteria.

Beneficial bacteria limit growth of disease-inducing putrefactive microorganisms by competitive inhibition. This happens because Lactobacillus species produce an acidic environment (through production of lactic acid) that limits the growth of harmful microorganisms.

In addition, beneficial bacteria synthesize substances called bacteriocins.7 These natural, antibiotic-like compounds selectively kill harmful bacteria, reducing and eliminating their colonies.

Once the harmful microorganisms are under control, the beneficial bacteria predominate your intestinal flora, colonizing areas of your intestinal wall (called the lumen) previously colonized by harmful, putrefactive organisms. Your gut ecosystem returns to balance, which has health effects rippling outward through your whole body.

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … increased immune system power

We’ve already discussed one way an out of balance gut ecosystem can compromise your immunity. When harmful microorganisms dominate your intestinal flora, your immune system has to work overtime to counteract toxins they throw into your blood stream. This weakens your immune system’s ability to respond to attacks from other sources.

Probiotics boost your immune system by reducing the proportion of harmful bacteria and with them, the amount of toxins. But research demonstrates the immune enhancing abilities of the Lactobacillus species go beyond this first level effect.8

Studies reported in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition suggest that Lactobacillus enhances your body’s capacity to produce alpha interferon, increase natural killer (NK) cell activity, boost cytokine levels, and enzyme activity. (These are all critical aspects of a well-tuned immune system.)

In this study, researchers at the Taipei Medical College Hospital studied 53 healthy middle aged and elderly subjects for immunological effects produced by a strain of Lactobacillus mixed with reconstituted dry milk. When given just the milk for three weeks, there was no significant immunological increase.

“… natural killer cell tumor killing activity increased up to 147%.”

When fed the Lactobacillus rhamnosus-enhanced milk for three weeks, the subjects’ relative level of natural killer cell tumor killing activity increased up to 147%. In most cases these levels declined following cessation of the treatment but remained above baseline.

The researchers concluded that: “consumption of Lactobacillus … appears to enhance systemic cellular immune responses.”9

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … reduced serum cholesterol

An elevated level of serum LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) is now recognized as a major contributor to coronary heart disease. A number of research studies have shown that probiotics lower serum LDL cholesterol.10

In laboratory studies, rats fed Lactobacillus-containing milk mixed with animal feed showed lower serum cholesterol levels compared to rats fed only with skim milk-supplemented feed. After examining various possible modes of action to account for the results, researchers stated that Lactobacillus species directly eliminated the LDL cholesterol.11

One “test tube” study reported in Applied and Environmental Microbiology determined that Lactobacillus sporogenes absorbs cholesterol directly from a culture medium.

Based on their findings, the authors concluded that L. sporogenes lowers LDL cholesterol by eliminating it directly from inside the intestines before it can be absorbed into the blood stream.12

In another clinical study, L. sporogenes not only lowered total serum cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in humans, it also improved the ratio of “good” HDL cholesterol to total cholesterol.

The American Heart Association says that HDL cholesterol is beneficial because, in their words, “high levels of HDL seem to protect against heart attack.”

See figure 2 for a graphical representation of L. sporogenes’ cholesterol lowering power.

fig. 2

cholesterol lowering

The mechanism by which Lactobacillus bacteria lower bad cholesterol is a bit complicated. Simplified, it goes like this:

  • Cholesterol is a fat and does not dissolve in water or water based liquids like blood. For it or other fats to be absorbed and used in your body, they have to be emulsified first.
  • Bile salts in your gut—together with phospholipids—emulsify cholesterol so it can be absorbed through the intestinal wall.
  • Lactobacillus changes bile salts in your gut into bile acids. This change inhibits the emulsified form of cholesterol, keeping a substantial amount from being absorbed. The unabsorbed cholesterol is eliminated in the feces.

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … reduced risk for the development of cancers

There is an increasing body of evidence that healthy people normally carry cancer-causing factors in their bodies for much of their lives—factors including genes and viruses.13

These factors can lie dormant for a long time. But once they get “awakened,” the results can be tragic.

Researchers used to think the immune system prevented these factors from causing cancers. It kept cancers from spreading by constantly looking to see if cancer cells were present and killing them once they were found.

Consequently, medical researchers believed the growth and spread of cancer resulted from a breakdown of the immune system. In a broken-down immune system, effective anti-cancer immune responses could not occur.

But this view is changing. The breakdown of immune response is now believed to account for only somecancers.14 Other causes now believed to be equally important include carcinogens of all types—including those produced in the gut by harmful organisms.

It is far too early to say that beneficial bacteria like the Lactobacillus species can prevent cancers. But numerous studies—both in vitro (“test tube”) and in vivo (live subjects)—show that lactic acid bacteria have inhibitory effects on the development of cancers.

Research into the exact mechanism of this inhibitory action is inconclusive. But much of the research points to beneficial bacteria’s reduction of cancer-causing agents by putrefactive organisms in the gut.15

Clinical results relating to tumor proliferation and cancer growth demonstrate the important role lactic acid bacteria (such as Lactobacillus) play in keeping harmful, putrefactive bacteria in check … and in maintaining balance between harmful, putrefactive organisms and beneficial gut flora.

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … relief from stomach and intestinal disturbances

The interest in Lactobacillus bacteria as a probiotic to improve health really goes back thousands of years. Cultured “soured-milk” products have long been used as an effective way to settle gastric distress.

And for any population with genetic lactose intolerance, it was one of the only ways to take milk. (Cheese production, the other way, took too long for nomadic cultures, so their only practical solution was fermented milk.)

But stomach problems remain a source of significant discomfort. The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) reports that digestive problems adversely affect the lives of more than 65 million Americans, with 30% of Americans experiencing at least one significant gastroenterological event each year.

The most common complaints include diarrhea, constipation, and general upset stomach.

These are all complaints that most frequently result from disruption of a balanced intestinal ecosystem and have been successfully treated with Lactobacillus species.16

Other studies on the effectiveness of probiotic treatment of gastrointestinal problems have proved inconclusive because the problem some Lactobacillus species have getting through the stomach, into the intestine.

This was not found to be a problem when the species studied was Lactobacillus sporogenes.17

The primary sources of cultured milk were a variety of beneficial bacteria, but principally L. acidophilusand L. bulgaricus.

These two beneficial bacteria are still used in the form of yogurt as a way of settling stomachs but with limited success. In short, the problem with these bacteria is they do not survive the high acid conditions of the stomach.

There is, however, a simple, natural solution if you are looking for almost immediate relief from chronic stomach problems. It’s a form of beneficial bacteria—a lot like L. acidophilus—that wraps itself in a natural, strong, protective coat.

We will see how this works momentarily after we tell you about some of the other amazing properties probiotics bring to your physiological ecosystem.

Why yogurt is not enough

When lactic acid bacteria are present in the gut in sufficient quantities, they provide significant balancing of your gut ecology … and the health benefits for your whole system that comes with it.

As such, bacteria like L. acidophilus should be ideal candidates for supplementation or similar programs. A supplement-based ecological balancing program would work like this: Increase the presence of lactic acid bacteria in the intestines and they provide balancing effects against harmful, putrefactive bacteria that produce toxins and carcinogens.

It seems simple, direct, and easy. However, there are two major barriers preventing most species of lactic acid bacteria from being effective supplements.

The first barrier isn’t even in the body. Rather, it is the conditions these beneficial bacteria must face before entering your body.

The most common mode of delivery for Lactobacillus species to humans has traditionally been yogurt or other fermented milk products. But yogurt is bulky, requires refrigeration, and has limited shelf life, so it doesn’t make a good Lactobacillus supplementation delivery system.

A better way to deliver Lactobacillus bacteria as a supplement would be in powdered form. And the most effective way to accomplish that would be in freeze-dried (lyophilized) form.

Unfortunately, L. acidophilus does not survive freeze-drying well. This procedure results in a low count of viable L. acidophilus bacteria. And the lyophilized form—like the forms in yogurt—also has a limited shelf life.18

This is why many existing supplements of L. acidophilus that claim billions of live bacteria, when assayed have closer to 1,000 cells per assayed unit.19

Stymied by hydrochloric acid before they can do their work

But if it were possible to overcome the manufacturing and shelf life problems, L. acidophilus faces yet another physiological barrier.20

The effectiveness of probiotic therapy is not dependent on how many individual bacteria are ingested. The only important number is how many bacteria survive the hostile stomach environment to get into the small and large intestines where they perform their ecological balancing functions. (See Fig. 3).

fig 3.

Human GI Tract

If enough bacteria make it through, a colony large enough to interfere with and replace existing colonies of harmful bacteria forms.

But, if enough beneficial bacteria cannot get through, they are not able to establish large enough colonies. The harmful bacteria maintain their stronghold and increase stress to your immune system, throwing your physiological ecosystem further out of whack.

This is the overwhelming problem with L. acidophilus. For all their health-providing strength, L. acidophilus and similar species are“wimps.” They do not survive in the highly acidic environment of the stomach (with a pH around 3 to 5—the lower the number, the more acid the environment).

So even if you ingested a live culture with huge numbers of bacteria, few, if any, of the live bacteria make it through the stomach. There are simply not enough available to implant themselves in your intestines and establish large enough colonies to do you any good.

Introducing an acid-proof “submarine” for probiotic therapy

If it were possible to coat beneficial Lactobacillus bacteria in an acid-proof coating—a coating that also protects individual cells during freeze-drying—then an effective supplementation program looks more possible.

And the good news is, there is a form of lactic acid bacteria that already exists and forms a natural protective coating of sorts. This lactic acid bacterium is Lactobacillus sporogenes. These bacteria form hard, impermeable spores allowing them to survive both freeze-drying and the high acid stomach environment.

L. sporogenes

L. sporogenes survive challenging conditions far better than L. acidophilus. The spore allows it to ride out unfavorable conditions and then germinate when conditions improve.

It grows optimally between 30?C and 37?C (86? – 98.6?F; body temperature) but remains stable and viable in the unsporulated form until close to 60?C (140?F). And they are able to survive in the spore stage at even higher temperatures.

These bacteria not only survive an acid environment, that environment is necessary for their activation. Here is how this works:

  • On oral administration, spores survive the acid stomach environment and are activated by the low pH, mechanical churning in the stomach, and the water in the gastric environment.
  • The spore coats absorb water and swell. The increased water in the spores raises the metabolic rate of the bacteria. Outgrowths from the cells protrude from the spore coats.
  • About this time, the spores pass into the upper small intestine (duodenum) where the outgrown cells germinate and grow. Cells proliferate in the small intestine, multiplying rapidly, establishing active colonies of beneficial bacteria.
  • Germination takes around 4 hours after ingestion. The activated cells settle in the intestinal tract where they continue metabolic activities, produce lactic acid and bacteriocins. Once established, L. sporogenes colonies are able to interfere with harmful, putrefactive bacteria.21

A safe … and effective way to balance your intestinal ecology

L. sporogenes has been proven safe in numerous clinical and non-clinical toxicological studies.

Acute toxicity studies with L. sporogenes were performed in male mice fed 1, 3 or 5 g/kg/day of powdered L. sporogenes containing not less than a billion spores of L. sporogenes per gram. (This is the equivalent of a 200-pound man ingesting as much as one pound per day.)

The mice were observed for 7 days. No deaths occurred nor were there any long or short term abnormalities such as diarrhea.22

Additional studies of rats, dogs, rabbits, and guinea pigs—some lasting as long as 15 months—showed no abnormalities observed during the period of treatment as well as after withdrawal of the treatment.

Balance your intestinal ecology with a comprehensive nutritional program using L. sporogenes

“Nurture wellness from the inside out.”
Dr. Ann Haiden, DO

Many lactic acid bacteria species synthesize and release vitamins B2, B5, and B12 into their hosts.23 But experiments have revealed that lactic acid bacteria also need an outside source of B vitamins to sustain their own metabolic activities (kind of a complex “pump priming”).24

By providing necessary B-complex vitamins in a well-structured supplementation program, you are encouraging the growth and proliferation of beneficial L. sporogenes bacteria. L. sporogenes returns the favor by keeping your intestinal ecology in balance.

Thus by adding a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals while supplementing with L. sporogenes, you are boosting your supplementation program synergistically.

L. sporogenes is the most practical and effective probiotic for supplementing your full spectrum nutritional program.

Safely enclosed within a spore coat that protects it from the environment, L. sporogenes is resistant to heat, oxygen, and digestive acids. It travels safely through your stomach’s inhospitable environment to your intestine … where it can establish colonies, keeping disease-causing putrefactive bacteria in check … getting your entire system back into dynamic balance, and along with it, the “glow of health” you desire.

There is some controversy over the name Lactobacillus sporogenes. When this bacterium was first isolated and described by Horowitz and Nowotelnow, they called it L. sporogenes. That name was accepted in the fifth edition of Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology.

In a later edition of the manual, the bacterium was reclassified as Bacillus coagulans to reflect simplified classification system. As these two names both refer to the same microorganism that balances your intestinal flora and your overall physiological ecology, we use the historical name of Lactobacillus sporogenes in this monograph.

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … relief from stomach and intestinal disturbances

The interest in Lactobacillus bacteria as a probiotic to improve health really goes back thousands of years. Cultured “soured-milk” products have long been used as an effective way to settle gastric distress.

And for any population with genetic lactose intolerance, it was one of the only ways to take milk. (Cheese production, the other way, took too long for nomadic cultures, so their only practical solution was fermented milk.)

But stomach problems remain a source of significant discomfort. The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) reports that digestive problems adversely affect the lives of more than 65 million Americans, with 30% of Americans experiencing at least one significant gastroenterological event each year.

The most common complaints include diarrhea, constipation, and general upset stomach.

These are all complaints that most frequently result from disruption of a balanced intestinal ecosystem and have been successfully treated with Lactobacillus species.16

Other studies on the effectiveness of probiotic treatment of gastrointestinal problems have proved inconclusive because the problem some Lactobacillus species have getting through the stomach, into the intestine.

This was not found to be a problem when the species studied was Lactobacillus sporogenes.17

The primary sources of cultured milk were a variety of beneficial bacteria, but principally L. acidophilusand L. bulgaricus.

These two beneficial bacteria are still used in the form of yogurt as a way of settling stomachs but with limited success. In short, the problem with these bacteria is they do not survive the high acid conditions of the stomach.

There is, however, a simple, natural solution if you are looking for almost immediate relief from chronic stomach problems. It’s a form of beneficial bacteria—a lot like L. acidophilus—that wraps itself in a natural, strong, protective coat.

We will see how this works momentarily after we tell you about some of the other amazing properties probiotics bring to your physiological ecosystem.

Why yogurt is not enough

When lactic acid bacteria are present in the gut in sufficient quantities, they provide significant balancing of your gut ecology … and the health benefits for your whole system that comes with it.

As such, bacteria like L. acidophilus should be ideal candidates for supplementation or similar programs. A supplement-based ecological balancing program would work like this: Increase the presence of lactic acid bacteria in the intestines and they provide balancing effects against harmful, putrefactive bacteria that produce toxins and carcinogens.

It seems simple, direct, and easy. However, there are two major barriers preventing most species of lactic acid bacteria from being effective supplements.

The first barrier isn’t even in the body. Rather, it is the conditions these beneficial bacteria must face before entering your body.

The most common mode of delivery for Lactobacillus species to humans has traditionally been yogurt or other fermented milk products. But yogurt is bulky, requires refrigeration, and has limited shelf life, so it doesn’t make a good Lactobacillus supplementation delivery system.

A better way to deliver Lactobacillus bacteria as a supplement would be in powdered form. And the most effective way to accomplish that would be in freeze-dried (lyophilized) form.

Unfortunately, L. acidophilus does not survive freeze-drying well. This procedure results in a low count of viable L. acidophilus bacteria. And the lyophilized form—like the forms in yogurt—also has a limited shelf life.18

This is why many existing supplements of L. acidophilus that claim billions of live bacteria, when assayed have closer to 1,000 cells per assayed unit.19

Stymied by hydrochloric acid before they can do their work

But if it were possible to overcome the manufacturing and shelf life problems, L. acidophilus faces yet another physiological barrier.20

The effectiveness of probiotic therapy is not dependent on how many individual bacteria are ingested. The only important number is how many bacteria survive the hostile stomach environment to get into the small and large intestines where they perform their ecological balancing functions. (See Fig. 3).

fig 3.

Human GI Tract

If enough bacteria make it through, a colony large enough to interfere with and replace existing colonies of harmful bacteria forms.

But, if enough beneficial bacteria cannot get through, they are not able to establish large enough colonies. The harmful bacteria maintain their stronghold and increase stress to your immune system, throwing your physiological ecosystem further out of whack.

This is the overwhelming problem with L. acidophilus. For all their health-providing strength, L. acidophilus and similar species are“wimps.” They do not survive in the highly acidic environment of the stomach (with a pH around 3 to 5—the lower the number, the more acid the environment).

So even if you ingested a live culture with huge numbers of bacteria, few, if any, of the live bacteria make it through the stomach. There are simply not enough available to implant themselves in your intestines and establish large enough colonies to do you any good.

Introducing an acid-proof “submarine” for probiotic therapy

If it were possible to coat beneficial Lactobacillus bacteria in an acid-proof coating—a coating that also protects individual cells during freeze-drying—then an effective supplementation program looks more possible.

And the good news is, there is a form of lactic acid bacteria that already exists and forms a natural protective coating of sorts. This lactic acid bacterium is Lactobacillus sporogenes. These bacteria form hard, impermeable spores allowing them to survive both freeze-drying and the high acid stomach environment.

L. sporogenes

L. sporogenes survive challenging conditions far better than L. acidophilus. The spore allows it to ride out unfavorable conditions and then germinate when conditions improve.

It grows optimally between 30?C and 37?C (86? – 98.6?F; body temperature) but remains stable and viable in the unsporulated form until close to 60?C (140?F). And they are able to survive in the spore stage at even higher temperatures.

These bacteria not only survive an acid environment, that environment is necessary for their activation. Here is how this works:

  • On oral administration, spores survive the acid stomach environment and are activated by the low pH, mechanical churning in the stomach, and the water in the gastric environment.
  • The spore coats absorb water and swell. The increased water in the spores raises the metabolic rate of the bacteria. Outgrowths from the cells protrude from the spore coats.
  • About this time, the spores pass into the upper small intestine (duodenum) where the outgrown cells germinate and grow. Cells proliferate in the small intestine, multiplying rapidly, establishing active colonies of beneficial bacteria.
  • Germination takes around 4 hours after ingestion. The activated cells settle in the intestinal tract where they continue metabolic activities, produce lactic acid and bacteriocins. Once established, L. sporogenes colonies are able to interfere with harmful, putrefactive bacteria.21

A safe … and effective way to balance your intestinal ecology

L. sporogenes has been proven safe in numerous clinical and non-clinical toxicological studies.

Acute toxicity studies with L. sporogenes were performed in male mice fed 1, 3 or 5 g/kg/day of powdered L. sporogenes containing not less than a billion spores of L. sporogenes per gram. (This is the equivalent of a 200-pound man ingesting as much as one pound per day.)

The mice were observed for 7 days. No deaths occurred nor were there any long or short term abnormalities such as diarrhea.22

Additional studies of rats, dogs, rabbits, and guinea pigs—some lasting as long as 15 months—showed no abnormalities observed during the period of treatment as well as after withdrawal of the treatment.

Balance your intestinal ecology with a comprehensive nutritional program using L. sporogenes

“Nurture wellness from the inside out.”
Dr. Ann Haiden, DO

Many lactic acid bacteria species synthesize and release vitamins B2, B5, and B12 into their hosts.23 But experiments have revealed that lactic acid bacteria also need an outside source of B vitamins to sustain their own metabolic activities (kind of a complex “pump priming”).24

By providing necessary B-complex vitamins in a well-structured supplementation program, you are encouraging the growth and proliferation of beneficial L. sporogenes bacteria. L. sporogenes returns the favor by keeping your intestinal ecology in balance.

Thus by adding a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals while supplementing with L. sporogenes, you are boosting your supplementation program synergistically.

L. sporogenes is the most practical and effective probiotic for supplementing your full spectrum nutritional program.

Safely enclosed within a spore coat that protects it from the environment, L. sporogenes is resistant to heat, oxygen, and digestive acids. It travels safely through your stomach’s inhospitable environment to your intestine … where it can establish colonies, keeping disease-causing putrefactive bacteria in check … getting your entire system back into dynamic balance, and along with it, the “glow of health” you desire.

There is some controversy over the name Lactobacillus sporogenes. When this bacterium was first isolated and described by Horowitz and Nowotelnow, they called it L. sporogenes. That name was accepted in the fifth edition of Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology.

In a later edition of the manual, the bacterium was reclassified as Bacillus coagulans to reflect simplified classification system. As these two names both refer to the same microorganism that balances your intestinal flora and your overall physiological ecology, we use the historical name of Lactobacillus sporogenes in this monograph.

A balanced intestinal ecosystem brings … relief from stomach and intestinal disturbances

The interest in Lactobacillus bacteria as a probiotic to improve health really goes back thousands of years. Cultured “soured-milk” products have long been used as an effective way to settle gastric distress.

And for any population with genetic lactose intolerance, it was one of the only ways to take milk. (Cheese production, the other way, took too long for nomadic cultures, so their only practical solution was fermented milk.)

But stomach problems remain a source of significant discomfort. The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) reports that digestive problems adversely affect the lives of more than 65 million Americans, with 30% of Americans experiencing at least one significant gastroenterological event each year.

The most common complaints include diarrhea, constipation, and general upset stomach.

These are all complaints that most frequently result from disruption of a balanced intestinal ecosystem and have been successfully treated with Lactobacillus species.16

Other studies on the effectiveness of probiotic treatment of gastrointestinal problems have proved inconclusive because the problem some Lactobacillus species have getting through the stomach, into the intestine.

This was not found to be a problem when the species studied was Lactobacillus sporogenes.17

The primary sources of cultured milk were a variety of beneficial bacteria, but principally L. acidophilusand L. bulgaricus.

These two beneficial bacteria are still used in the form of yogurt as a way of settling stomachs but with limited success. In short, the problem with these bacteria is they do not survive the high acid conditions of the stomach.

There is, however, a simple, natural solution if you are looking for almost immediate relief from chronic stomach problems. It’s a form of beneficial bacteria—a lot like L. acidophilus—that wraps itself in a natural, strong, protective coat.

We will see how this works momentarily after we tell you about some of the other amazing properties probiotics bring to your physiological ecosystem.

Why yogurt is not enough

When lactic acid bacteria are present in the gut in sufficient quantities, they provide significant balancing of your gut ecology … and the health benefits for your whole system that comes with it.

As such, bacteria like L. acidophilus should be ideal candidates for supplementation or similar programs. A supplement-based ecological balancing program would work like this: Increase the presence of lactic acid bacteria in the intestines and they provide balancing effects against harmful, putrefactive bacteria that produce toxins and carcinogens.

It seems simple, direct, and easy. However, there are two major barriers preventing most species of lactic acid bacteria from being effective supplements.

The first barrier isn’t even in the body. Rather, it is the conditions these beneficial bacteria must face before entering your body.

The most common mode of delivery for Lactobacillus species to humans has traditionally been yogurt or other fermented milk products. But yogurt is bulky, requires refrigeration, and has limited shelf life, so it doesn’t make a good Lactobacillus supplementation delivery system.

A better way to deliver Lactobacillus bacteria as a supplement would be in powdered form. And the most effective way to accomplish that would be in freeze-dried (lyophilized) form.

Unfortunately, L. acidophilus does not survive freeze-drying well. This procedure results in a low count of viable L. acidophilus bacteria. And the lyophilized form—like the forms in yogurt—also has a limited shelf life.18

This is why many existing supplements of L. acidophilus that claim billions of live bacteria, when assayed have closer to 1,000 cells per assayed unit.19

Stymied by hydrochloric acid before they can do their work

But if it were possible to overcome the manufacturing and shelf life problems, L. acidophilus faces yet another physiological barrier.20

The effectiveness of probiotic therapy is not dependent on how many individual bacteria are ingested. The only important number is how many bacteria survive the hostile stomach environment to get into the small and large intestines where they perform their ecological balancing functions. (See Fig. 3).

fig 3.

Human GI Tract

If enough bacteria make it through, a colony large enough to interfere with and replace existing colonies of harmful bacteria forms.

But, if enough beneficial bacteria cannot get through, they are not able to establish large enough colonies. The harmful bacteria maintain their stronghold and increase stress to your immune system, throwing your physiological ecosystem further out of whack.

This is the overwhelming problem with L. acidophilus. For all their health-providing strength, L. acidophilus and similar species are“wimps.” They do not survive in the highly acidic environment of the stomach (with a pH around 3 to 5—the lower the number, the more acid the environment).

So even if you ingested a live culture with huge numbers of bacteria, few, if any, of the live bacteria make it through the stomach. There are simply not enough available to implant themselves in your intestines and establish large enough colonies to do you any good.

Introducing an acid-proof “submarine” for probiotic therapy

If it were possible to coat beneficial Lactobacillus bacteria in an acid-proof coating—a coating that also protects individual cells during freeze-drying—then an effective supplementation program looks more possible.

And the good news is, there is a form of lactic acid bacteria that already exists and forms a natural protective coating of sorts. This lactic acid bacterium is Lactobacillus sporogenes. These bacteria form hard, impermeable spores allowing them to survive both freeze-drying and the high acid stomach environment.

L. sporogenes

L. sporogenes survive challenging conditions far better than L. acidophilus. The spore allows it to ride out unfavorable conditions and then germinate when conditions improve.

It grows optimally between 30?C and 37?C (86? – 98.6?F; body temperature) but remains stable and viable in the unsporulated form until close to 60?C (140?F). And they are able to survive in the spore stage at even higher temperatures.

These bacteria not only survive an acid environment, that environment is necessary for their activation. Here is how this works:

  • On oral administration, spores survive the acid stomach environment and are activated by the low pH, mechanical churning in the stomach, and the water in the gastric environment.
  • The spore coats absorb water and swell. The increased water in the spores raises the metabolic rate of the bacteria. Outgrowths from the cells protrude from the spore coats.
  • About this time, the spores pass into the upper small intestine (duodenum) where the outgrown cells germinate and grow. Cells proliferate in the small intestine, multiplying rapidly, establishing active colonies of beneficial bacteria.
  • Germination takes around 4 hours after ingestion. The activated cells settle in the intestinal tract where they continue metabolic activities, produce lactic acid and bacteriocins. Once established, L. sporogenes colonies are able to interfere with harmful, putrefactive bacteria.21

A safe … and effective way to balance your intestinal ecology

L. sporogenes has been proven safe in numerous clinical and non-clinical toxicological studies.

Acute toxicity studies with L. sporogenes were performed in male mice fed 1, 3 or 5 g/kg/day of powdered L. sporogenes containing not less than a billion spores of L. sporogenes per gram. (This is the equivalent of a 200-pound man ingesting as much as one pound per day.)

The mice were observed for 7 days. No deaths occurred nor were there any long or short term abnormalities such as diarrhea.22

Additional studies of rats, dogs, rabbits, and guinea pigs—some lasting as long as 15 months—showed no abnormalities observed during the period of treatment as well as after withdrawal of the treatment.

Balance your intestinal ecology with a comprehensive nutritional program using L. sporogenes

“Nurture wellness from the inside out.”
Dr. Ann Haiden, DO

Many lactic acid bacteria species synthesize and release vitamins B2, B5, and B12 into their hosts.23 But experiments have revealed that lactic acid bacteria also need an outside source of B vitamins to sustain their own metabolic activities (kind of a complex “pump priming”).24

By providing necessary B-complex vitamins in a well-structured supplementation program, you are encouraging the growth and proliferation of beneficial L. sporogenes bacteria. L. sporogenes returns the favor by keeping your intestinal ecology in balance.

Thus by adding a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals while supplementing with L. sporogenes, you are boosting your supplementation program synergistically.

L. sporogenes is the most practical and effective probiotic for supplementing your full spectrum nutritional program.

Safely enclosed within a spore coat that protects it from the environment, L. sporogenes is resistant to heat, oxygen, and digestive acids. It travels safely through your stomach’s inhospitable environment to your intestine … where it can establish colonies, keeping disease-causing putrefactive bacteria in check … getting your entire system back into dynamic balance, and along with it, the “glow of health” you desire.

There is some controversy over the name Lactobacillus sporogenes. When this bacterium was first isolated and described by Horowitz and Nowotelnow, they called it L. sporogenes. That name was accepted in the fifth edition of Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology.

In a later edition of the manual, the bacterium was reclassified as Bacillus coagulans to reflect simplified classification system. As these two names both refer to the same microorganism that balances your intestinal flora and your overall physiological ecology, we use the historical name of Lactobacillus sporogenes in this monograph.

References

  1. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
  2. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
  3. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis. Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771).
  4. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
  5. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
  6. Park, B. S., Kim, J. R., Lee, S.cE., Kim, K. S., Takeoka, G .R., Ahn, Y. J., Kim, J. H. 2005. Selective Growth-Inhibiting Effects of Compounds Identified in Tabebuia impetiginosa Inner Bark on Human Intestinal Bacteria. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Vol. 53, p. 1152-1157.
  7. Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 1, 1998.
  8. Gill, H. S., and Rutherfurd K. J. Immune enhancement conferred by oral delivery of Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001 in different milk-based substrates. Journal of Dairy Research (2001), 68: 611-616 New Zealand.
  9. Ying-H. Sheih, MD, Bor-L. Chiang, MD, Ling-H. Wang, MD, Chuh-K. Liao, MD, and Harsharnjit S. Gill, PhD. Systemic Immunity-Enhancing Effects in Healthy Subjects Following Dietary Consumption of the Lactic Acid Bacterium Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Vol. 20, No. 2, 149–156, 2001.
  10. Agerholm-Larsen L, Bell ML, Grunwald GK, Astrup A. The effect of a probiotic milk product on plasma cholesterol: a meta-analysis of short-term intervention studies. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2000 Nov;54(11):856-60.
  11. Pulusani, S.R. and Rao, D.R. Whole body, liver and plasma cholesterol levels in rats fed thermophilus, bulgaricus, and acidophilus milks. J Food Sci 48: 220-281. 1983.
  12. Seok, E. K. et al. Lowering of serum cholesterol by L. sporogenes. J Pharm Soc Korea. 31(5): 302-307. 1987.
  13. Bonafé, M. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 64:292–295, p.53 Variants Predisposing to Cancer Are Present in Healthy Centenarians, letters, 1999. University of California, San Francisco, grant application document
  14. Treating and Preventing Cancer with Vaccines, National Cancer Institute.
  15. Gorbach, S. L. Lactic acid bacteria and human health. Annals of Medicine 22:37-41. 1990.
  16. Diarrhea in rats: Hitchins, A.D., et al. Amelioration of the adverse effect of a gastrointestinal challenge with Salmonella enterids on weanling rats by a yogurt diet. Am. J. Clin. Nutr., 41: 91-100; 1985 as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.
    Diarrhea in children: Zychowski, C. et al. Results of administrations ofLactobacillus acidophilus cultures (acidophilus milk) in the endemic focus of dysentery. Pediatra Polska, 49: 997-1003; 1974; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.
    Constipation: Winkelstein, A.Lactobacillus acidophilus in the therapy of functional intestinal disorders: further studies. Amer. Practit. Dig. Treat, 7: 1637, 1956; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.

  17. La Rosa M, Bottaro G, Gulino N, Gambuzza F, Di Forti F, Ini G, Tornambe E. [Prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea with Lactobacillus sporogens and fructo-oligosaccharides in children. A multicentric double-blind vs placebo study] Minerva Pediatr. 2003 Oct;55(5):447-52.

    Smirnov VV, Reznik SR, V’iunitskaia VA, et al. The effect of the complex probiotic sporolacton the intestinal microbiocenosis of warm-blooded animals. Mikrobiol Z 1995;57:42-49.
    Abstract

  18. Brennan, M., Wanismail, B., Ray, B. Prevalence of viable Lactobacillus acidophilus in dried commercial products. Journal of Food Protection 1983;46(10):887-92.

    Gilliland, S.E., Speck, M.L. Enumeration and identity of lactobacilli in dietary products. Journal of Food Protection 1977;40(11):760-62.

  19. Gandhi, A.B. Lactobacillus sporogenes, an advancement in Lactobacillus therapy. The Eastern Pharmacist, 41-43, 1988; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 25-26, 1998.
  20. Sankyo Co, Ltd., Outline of Lacris for animal use – a preparation of spore-bearing lactic acid-forming Bacillus for veterinary use, 1-16, 1968; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 36, 1998.
  21. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771). Sebastian Oltean and Ruma Banerjee. Nutritional Modulation of Gene Expression and Homocysteine Utilization by Vitamin B12. Journal of Biological Chemistry, Vol. 278, No. 23, June 6, pp. 20778–20784, 2003.
  22. Nilson, K.M. et al. B-complex vitamin content of cheddar cheese, J. Nutrition, 86:362-8, 1965; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 10, 1998.
  23. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis. Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771).
  24. Nilson, K.M. et al. B-complex vitamin content of cheddar cheese, J. Nutrition, 86:362-8, 1965; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 10, 1998.
  25. http://textbookofbacteriology.net
  26. Stanley Maloy, San Diego State University Department of Biology and Center for Microbial Sciences and Rob Edwards at the Center for Microbial Sciences, Rohwer Lab at San Diego State University. http://www.salmonella.org/info.html

    References

    1. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
    2. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
    3. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis. Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771).
    4. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
    5. Mitsuoka, Tomotari. Intestinal flora and human health. Asia Pacific J Clin Nutr (1996) Vol5, No 1: 2-9.
    6. Park, B. S., Kim, J. R., Lee, S.cE., Kim, K. S., Takeoka, G .R., Ahn, Y. J., Kim, J. H. 2005. Selective Growth-Inhibiting Effects of Compounds Identified in Tabebuia impetiginosa Inner Bark on Human Intestinal Bacteria. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. Vol. 53, p. 1152-1157.
    7. Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 1, 1998.
    8. Gill, H. S., and Rutherfurd K. J. Immune enhancement conferred by oral delivery of Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001 in different milk-based substrates. Journal of Dairy Research (2001), 68: 611-616 New Zealand.
    9. Ying-H. Sheih, MD, Bor-L. Chiang, MD, Ling-H. Wang, MD, Chuh-K. Liao, MD, and Harsharnjit S. Gill, PhD. Systemic Immunity-Enhancing Effects in Healthy Subjects Following Dietary Consumption of the Lactic Acid Bacterium Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Vol. 20, No. 2, 149–156, 2001.
    10. Agerholm-Larsen L, Bell ML, Grunwald GK, Astrup A. The effect of a probiotic milk product on plasma cholesterol: a meta-analysis of short-term intervention studies. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2000 Nov;54(11):856-60.
    11. Pulusani, S.R. and Rao, D.R. Whole body, liver and plasma cholesterol levels in rats fed thermophilus, bulgaricus, and acidophilus milks. J Food Sci 48: 220-281. 1983.
    12. Seok, E. K. et al. Lowering of serum cholesterol by L. sporogenes. J Pharm Soc Korea. 31(5): 302-307. 1987.
    13. Bonafé, M. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 64:292–295, p.53 Variants Predisposing to Cancer Are Present in Healthy Centenarians, letters, 1999. University of California, San Francisco, grant application document
    14. Treating and Preventing Cancer with Vaccines, National Cancer Institute.
    15. Gorbach, S. L. Lactic acid bacteria and human health. Annals of Medicine 22:37-41. 1990.
    16. Diarrhea in rats: Hitchins, A.D., et al. Amelioration of the adverse effect of a gastrointestinal challenge with Salmonella enterids on weanling rats by a yogurt diet. Am. J. Clin. Nutr., 41: 91-100; 1985 as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.
      Diarrhea in children: Zychowski, C. et al. Results of administrations ofLactobacillus acidophilus cultures (acidophilus milk) in the endemic focus of dysentery. Pediatra Polska, 49: 997-1003; 1974; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.
      Constipation: Winkelstein, A.Lactobacillus acidophilus in the therapy of functional intestinal disorders: further studies. Amer. Practit. Dig. Treat, 7: 1637, 1956; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 18-19, 1998.

    17. La Rosa M, Bottaro G, Gulino N, Gambuzza F, Di Forti F, Ini G, Tornambe E. [Prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea with Lactobacillus sporogens and fructo-oligosaccharides in children. A multicentric double-blind vs placebo study] Minerva Pediatr. 2003 Oct;55(5):447-52.

      Smirnov VV, Reznik SR, V’iunitskaia VA, et al. The effect of the complex probiotic sporolacton the intestinal microbiocenosis of warm-blooded animals. Mikrobiol Z 1995;57:42-49.
      Abstract

    18. Brennan, M., Wanismail, B., Ray, B. Prevalence of viable Lactobacillus acidophilus in dried commercial products. Journal of Food Protection 1983;46(10):887-92.

      Gilliland, S.E., Speck, M.L. Enumeration and identity of lactobacilli in dietary products. Journal of Food Protection 1977;40(11):760-62.

    19. Gandhi, A.B. Lactobacillus sporogenes, an advancement in Lactobacillus therapy. The Eastern Pharmacist, 41-43, 1988; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. pages 25-26, 1998.
    20. Sankyo Co, Ltd., Outline of Lacris for animal use – a preparation of spore-bearing lactic acid-forming Bacillus for veterinary use, 1-16, 1968; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 36, 1998.
    21. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771). Sebastian Oltean and Ruma Banerjee. Nutritional Modulation of Gene Expression and Homocysteine Utilization by Vitamin B12. Journal of Biological Chemistry, Vol. 278, No. 23, June 6, pp. 20778–20784, 2003.
    22. Nilson, K.M. et al. B-complex vitamin content of cheddar cheese, J. Nutrition, 86:362-8, 1965; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 10, 1998.
    23. A. Ciulli and C. Abell. Biophysical tools to monitor enzyme–ligand interactions of enzymes involved in vitamin biosynthesis. Biochem. Soc. Trans. (2005) 33, (767–771).
    24. Nilson, K.M. et al. B-complex vitamin content of cheddar cheese, J. Nutrition, 86:362-8, 1965; as cited in Majeed, M. Prakash, L. Lactospore. NutriScience Publishers, Inc. page 10, 1998.
    25. http://textbookofbacteriology.net
    26. Stanley Maloy, San Diego State University Department of Biology and Center for Microbial Sciences and Rob Edwards at the Center for Microbial Sciences, Rohwer Lab at San Diego State University. http://www.salmonella.org/info.html

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