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Probiotics: The Path to a Happy Belly

What Are Probiotics?


Your digestive system is full of bacteria. Good bacteria help your immune system, provide digestive support, and benefit your overall health.


The word probiotic means “for life.” A product with probiotics must provide live, active cultures. Probiotics are beneficial to the health of your digestive system and will be able to replicate and thrive in your gut. We know that there is a great diversity of bacteria that grows and lives together; this complexity is an important contributor to the health effects of the bacteria.


Research studies identified dozens of different genera of bacteria in the gut, with presumably hundreds of species. The variety seems to be important to overall health. However, there must be a balance, so that one particular species doesn’t take over and cause problems.


Not All Bacteria is Bad


Sometimes your intestines aren’t working as well as you’d like or you know something is wrong. It is normal to have some bad bacteria; however, it’s important to have the correct balance between the good bacteria and the bad bacteria to maintain healthy digestive functions. Using quality probiotic products can help you and your entire family maintain proper digestive health.


Finding the Best Source


You can maintain healthy bacteria through basic dietary habits, such as consuming yogurt or other fermented foods. These foods contain a lot of healthy bacteria, but research has found that only a small percentage survives the harsh acid in the stomach, allowing relatively small numbers of bacteria to make it to the gut. Furthermore, if you don’t continue to consume probiotics, their protective effect diminishes over time. It is recommended to take a probiotic supplement to receive the full benefits.


What is important when looking for a probiotic supplement?


First, it should be stable and have a reasonable shelf life. This means the bacteria should be in a dry, suspended state, or if live and active, they should be refrigerated.


Second, the bacteria must be able to survive the stomach acid so that it can get to the less acidic intestines to grow and provide you with its symbiotic benefits. This means it must be in a form that doesn’t allow the release of the bacteria until after it has passed through the stomach. This usually means it must be in a capsule.


Third, it should contain a blend of healthy bacteria that are typically found in a healthy gut. One single species does not represent the diversity required for optimal function.


When you think about the number of bacteria, (estimated to be 10 times the number of cells in the body, or around 10 trillion organisms), you begin to see that getting a healthy, consistent dose over time is critical to having an influence on your gut. A healthy person should get at least 5 billion bacteria delivered live to the intestines, preferably daily, such as those found in PB Assist+.

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Prebiotics: Probiotic Nourishment


Probiotics need sufficient food to thrive. Bacterial nutrients are called prebiotics-soluble fibers which nourish the good bacteria. This fiber should primarily come in the form of whole fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans. If you feel your diet is not as high quality as it should be, then supplemental fiber is important. Fortunately, many foods now contain fiber, including for example, protein and granola bars, and even yogurt. Fiber is also available in supplemental form. Fiber is included in our Trim Shakes, and our new Terragreens, both for its satiety and gut health benefits. PB Assist+ includes a prebiotic fiber called fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS) to support the initial needs of the dry suspended bacteria as they are released from the capsule into your gut. FOS are a particularly good source of food for bacteria.*


Good bacteria are an essential part of good health. Keep your bacteria healthy with good choices of food and by taking acidprotected probiotics and prebiotics. Use supplemental fiber if you aren’t able to get enough in your daily diet. As we head into the winter season, the mutually beneficial relationship we have with our gut bacteria will be an important relationship when bad bacteria try to take hold.


Key Benefits of Probiotics


Maintain a healthy gut*

Support digestion*

Keep bad bacteria from causing problems*

Provide important nutrients*


Top Probiotic Foods


Dark chocolate

Yogurt (with live cultures)




Dr. Parker Recommends: Trim Shakes, TerraGreens, & PB Assist+


Dr. Parker holds a PhD in Nutritional Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.


He has extensive experience in food processing, food chemistry, bio chemistry, physiology, and human nutrition. He has worked both in the supplement industry and in academia, making him uniquely positioned to understand product development, research, and the physiology and chemistry behind nutrition. Dr. Parker has a contagious passion for teaching people about the connection between nutrition and living a long, high-quality life.


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