Probiotics means “for life” from pro and biota. Nordics, traditionally, used fermented food in their diet. So did Japanese and Koreans.
Probiotics are good live bacteria and/or yeast naturally occurring in your body. They are the tiny little organisms, the good guys, working to keep your body healthy by fighting off bad guys, other harmful bacteria and pathogens, and to maintain balance within the body. Our body contains about 3.5 lbs of probiotics.
Our body is one huge ecosystem with diverse groups of microbes working together to keep its balance. When it gets invaded by a harmful bacteria and viruses multiplying in numbers, its balance gets thrown off. Consequently, it results in infection or sickness.
The good guys naturally live in your gut, mouth, vagina, urinary tract, skin and lungs and help out in many ways such as;
- Prevent you from getting sick from bad bacteria
- Make vitamins
- Line your gut to keep out bad bacteria
- Breakdown chemicals
They can also help support your immune system and fight off infection.
In addition, it was shown that probiotics promote the production of antibodies in our body. They may also boost immune cells like the IgA-producing cells, T lymphocytes and natural killer cells.
A single probiotic can affect the systematic immune system including mucosal immune system and the lining of gut. The mucosal immune system protects our respiratory system. As you know, Covid-19 attacks the respiratory organs initially.
Probiotics offer other health benefits for
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Ulcerative colitis (UC)
- Crohn's disease
- High cholesterol and heart health
- Upper respiratory infections (ear infections, common cold, sinusitis).
- Infection of the digestive tract caused by Clostridium difficile
- Eczema in children.
- Yeast infection
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Vaginal infection
Vagina is an ecosystem with its own balance. The presence of Lactobacilli bacteria makes it too acidic for other microorganisms to survive. That is why it has been used as a folk remedy to treat yeast infection and bacterial vaginosis, etc. Women eat yogurt or apply into the vagina.
Food rich in probiotics are:
Yogurt and Kefir
Korean kimchi (see Recipe)
Soft or aged cheese
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