Probiotics and Your Immune System

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We are born with beneficial bacteria in our digestive system, inherited from our mother. As we age, the profile and types of bacteria in our digestive system can change and affect our health and wellness. In many ways, humanity’s evolution is a result of a complex dance of interactions between the bacteria that pervade our environment, and our own bodies! Since we know that bacteria are everywhere, maintaining the proper balance of good and bad bacteria is essential to human health. This is where probiotics come in.

Probiotics: bacteria that are considered beneficial to human health. In other words, probiotics are live, beneficial microorganisms similar to the “friendly” bacteria found naturally in our body’s digestive system. Many factors can disturb our intestinal balance of bacteria: unhealthy food choices, hormones, illness, medications, stress, and travel all hold this potential. This is why taking probiotics daily can help to support both digestion and immune health, while promoting a healthy environment for the friendly bacteria already in our digestive system.

Our Bodies are Constantly Renewing Cells

Our intestinal cells have a very short life span; the average gut cell gets replaced every 2 to 4 days. Because the gastrointestinal tract is constantly renewing itself, we can’t take a probiotic just one time that “colonizes” and provides prolonged benefits. Therefore, consistent use of probiotics can help ensure that we’re supporting gut health.

The Gut Health and Immune System Connection

Seventy percent of the cells that make up our immune system are found in the digestive tract, explaining how probiotics support both digestion and the immune system. However, for probiotics to confer these benefits, a significant number of probiotic cells must survive exposure to our body’s stomach acid and bile to reach the intestinal tract, where they are most beneficial.

The Limitations of Conventional Probiotics

Many probiotics, such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, are vulnerable to stomach acids, some manufacturing processes, and temperature. A probiotic strain must be able to overcome these obstacles in order to provide a benefit.

GanedenBC30

With the above information in mind, ORGANIC INDIA has chosen to use GanedenBC30, a clinically researched and patented strain of the probiotic bacteria Bacillus coagulans. GanedenBC30 spores germinate, or come to life, in both the small and large intestine, benefiting the healthy bacteria already in the gut and supporting immune and digestive functions.

Specifically, Bacillus coagulans creates lactic acid in the digestive tract, making it more hospitable to friendly probiotic bacteria and less hospitable to the “bad guys” that can make us sick. In addition to this creation of lactic acid, Bacillus coagulans also creates beneficial compounds known as bacteriocins, which are known to reduce bad bacteria.

Can’t I just eat yogurt to get probiotics?

One study tested how well the probiotics found in both GanedenBC30 and yogurt could survive in a simulated stomach. After two hours in an environment with a pH of 2.0, GanedenBC30 cells were delivered 10 times more effectively than those found in yogurt cultures.

In addition to surviving the gastric environment, GanedenBC30 has also been clinically shown to survive harsh processing environments, including water that has been boiled for several minutes. This strain is therefore capable of being brewed with herbs to make infusions without any risk of losing its benefits.

GanedenBC30 can be found in two products in our Prevention™ Wellness Line: Immunity and Balance. The base of the Prevention™ Wellness Line is tulsi (holy basil). Revered as the queen of herbs, it has been used in India for 5,000 years. Tulsi is an adaptogen that supports overall wellness, vitality, and immunity; tulsi balances energy levels, relieves stress and uplifts mood.

  • Immunity: supports immune health with tulsi, probiotics, and peppermint. A daily serving of Immunity (3 cups) provides ½ billion live probiotic cultures to empower and renew the immune system.
  • Balance: supports digestive health with tulsi, probiotics, peppermint and ginger. A daily serving of Balance (3 cups) delivers 1 billion live probiotic cultures to support strong digestion and enhance protein utilization.

Learn more about probiotic teas at ORGANIC INDIA USA.

Sources: 

"Bacterial DNA from Mom May Be Inherited" by Amy Ellis Nutt, The Washington Post, 2/17/15

"Integrate Genome-Based Assessment of Safety for Probiotic Strains: Bacillus coagulans GBI-30, 6086 as a Case Study," by E. Salvetti et al., Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, 2016

"A Patented Strain of Bacillus coagulans Increased Immune Response to Viral Challenge" by M. Baron, Postgraduate Medicine, 2009

"Survival and Metabolic Activity of the GanedenBC30 Strain of Bacillus coagulans in a Dynamic in vitro Model of the Stomach and Small Intestine" by A.J.H. Maathuis et al., Beneficial Microbes, 2010

Contributor: 

Cat Zummer

Cat Zummer is the Training and Development Specialist at ORGANIC INDIA USA. Passionate about sustainability, Cat heads B Corp efforts and leads green initiatives in and out of the office. Her reverence for a holistic lifestyle expands beyond the work place: Cat advocates health and wellness by living her motto to respect, honor, and elevate our planet and all who reside here. She received a BA in Environmental Studies with a special focus on society and policy from CU Boulder and prefers being outside with her pup Olive above all other things.