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Probiotic Quiz

1. Which of the following can destroy the normal bacteria found in our gut lining?

a) Antibiotics, ham and wine.
b) Infectious diseases such as dysentery, salmonella and cholera
c) Sugary foods and carbohydrates such as white bread, pastries and pasta
d) Prolonged use of ibuprofen, aspirin, hydrocortisone, contraceptive pill and sleeping pills
e) All of the above

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Correct answer: e) All of the above.

The bacteria that grows and lives in the digestive system is very delicate and can be affected by many things. Antibiotics are designed to promote the immune system to destroy bacteria, ham and wine contain high levels of preservatives that prevent them ‘going off’ by preventing the growth of bacteria so that high levels of these inert chemicals continue along the digestive tract continuing their work.

Infectious diseases such as dysentery, salmonella and cholera are robust and compete with the healthy bacteria for a place to thrive. They can out populate the health bacteria and create significant damage to the balance of bacteria in the long term.

Just as the infectious diseases above, high levels of sugar and foods that are easily broken down into sugar creates the ideal environment for funguses such as candida to grow and thrive. Again these complete with the healthy bacteria for a place to live and thrive.

Long term drug use has been shown to have a negative effect on the natural bacteria by changing the chemical balance of the body. Drugs that are used for years are often the culprit. This is why drugs should only be used for emergencies and if they are to be used for prolonged periods you should have them reviewed regularly by your GP.

2. Which of the following is produced by probiotics as a by-product of digestion?

a) Antibiotics within the body
b) Vitamin K, B1, B2, B6 and B12
c) Proteins and muscle for strength
d) White blood cells but not red blood cells
e) All of the above

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Correct answer: b) Vitamin K, B1, B2, B6 and B12

Probiotics manufacture a number of vitamins during their metabolism which are beneficial to us, these include Vitamins of the B group, B1, B2, B6 and B12. They also open up pathways for Vit K and other helpful substances to enter the blood stream.

Probiotics do not produce antibiotics however they stimulate the immune function by triggering production of antibodies. The gastrointestinal tract is surrounded by a complex lymphatic network and the stimulation of the immune system by probiotics seems key to a health immune system.

Probiotics do not make protein or and blood cells.

3. Which of the following health problems are known to be helped by probiotics?

a) Diabetes, hypotension and hypothyroidism (but not hyperthyroidism)
b) IBS, inflammation, eczema, high cholesterol, hypertension, urinary tract infections and peptic ulcers
c) Fractures, osteoporosis and arthritis
d) Iron deficiency, low red blood cell count, asthma
e) None of the above

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Correct answer: b) IBS, inflammation, eczema, high cholesterol, hypertension, urinary tract infections and peptic ulcers

Probiotics seem to help with the function of bile in digestion of cholesterol which inhibits its reabsorption into the blood stream reducing cholesterol levels. They have been shown to help with inflammatory conditions, especially of the bowel including IBS. It is thought that they help regulate cytokine function which is part of the inflammatory pathway.

In 2003 researchers found probiotics helped with eczema which seemed to help by 20%.

Bacterial infections of the urinary tract (especially in women) where helped by probiotics. They helped to balance skin pH and flora in the reproductive tract and also in the gut lining assisting with stomach ulcers and fighting helicobacter pylori the infection that cause stomach ulcers.

Some early studies have shown that probiotics produce ACE-inhibitor like peptides during fermentation and can have modest effects on hypertension.

Probiotics are generally understood to improve health overall. In some studies the they have been shown to reduce the risk of ‘death by all causes’ (see Wikipedia on probiotics). The list of health benefits is long and includes primarily a boost to the immune system.

They should be taken daily as a supplement and the correct type, especially non-diary, is important. They can be eaten with a meal but not with a hot drink or alcohol. Ask Dawn for details as we have a special high quality probiotic available for our clients. Probiotics can help along with regular chiropractic care to reduce a significant number of health problems.

The information in the quiz comes from the book ‘GAPS syndrome’ by Dr Helen McBride and from Wikipedia.


Inspired Chiropractic | Phone: 01603 764777