Saturday, January 7, 2012

Probiotics Primer

Probiotics are the beneficial bacteria in the form of a nutritional supplement or fermented food, which can be taken in an attempt to replace or supplement damaged indigenous flora. Contrary to antibiotic meaning "against life"probiotic means "pro-life" or "for-life." - Gut and Psychology Syndrome
GAPS Probiotic recommendations:
  • as many different species of beneficial bacteria as possible
  • a mixture of strains from different groups of probiotic bacteria
  • at least 8 billion live bacterial cells per gram
  • each batch tested for strength and bacterial composition, with the results published
  • no fillers that would bother a person
Therapeutic doses based on age:

0-12 months of age = 1-2 billion of bacterial cells per day (1 capsule of BK)
1-2 years of age = 2-4 billion of bacterial cells per day (1-2 capsules of BK)
2-4 years of age = 4-8 billion of bacterial cells per day (2-4 capsules of BK)
4-10 years of age = 8-12 billion of bacterial cells per day (4-6 capsules of BK)
12-16 years of age = 12-15 billion of bacterial cells per day (6-8 capsules of BK)
Adults = 15-20 billion of bacterial cells per day (8-10 capsules of BK)

For minimal die-off and maximum progress, one must start with a fraction of the therapeutic dose. The author of GAPS Guide recommends taking 16 weeks to build to the full dose, but I've been able to move Juliana along faster than that. Dr. Natasha recommends increasing dosage once die-off symptoms subside.

Note that if you don't change your diet, then probiotics aren't going to do much for you. Per Dr. Natasha, if you carry on feeding your pathogens in the gut with sugar and processed carbohydrates then the probiotic will not have much chance of helping you.

All this to say that Juliana's new probiotic has arrived! Starting tomorrow she will receive her first dose of Bio-Kult.

Some other good probiotics I have heard of:
GutPro - good for those with a very sensitive/damaged gut. We used this for awhile.
Natren Life Start - this is WAPF's recommended probiotic for babies. We used it for awhile, but it's only one strain. Note that it is cultured on dairy.
BioGaia liquid L.Reuteri - cultured on breast milk. I haven't used it but have heard it's a good choice for young babies.

There are so many probiotic options - it seems that everyone has their favorite brand. Stick to the recommendations above and shop around. Or just go straight to Bio-Kult!

1 comment:

  1. And a quick note - not all fillers are necessarily listed on the package - the only way to know for sure is to ring the manufacturer. We found this out recently through our gastro-enterologst, who was pretty sure that one of the supplements Sophie was taking contained dextrose (Sophie can't have corn).