Probiotics are live healthy bacteria naturally found in the human gut. They help maintain the natural balance of micro flora in your intestine to prevent the over growth of unfriendly bacteria which can lead to many health problems and diseases and is the main reason why one needs to maintain a healthy intestinal flora.
Antibiotics , chlorinated water, processed foods, stress and other factors can disrupt the natural balance of your gut flora and is why most people will choose the known benefits of the probiotics in yogurt to correct the problem.
Today in an effort to increase the friendly bacteria, people are gulping down yogurt and taking probiotic pills by the handfuls not realizing they may not be getting the full benefits of the probiotics in commercially prepared yogurt
. How or why is that possible when many traditional cultures have been consuming cultured , fermented foods like yogurt for years ? The answer is because traditional yogurts were full of beneficial bacteria due to their raw and unpasteurized state.
Today pasteurization radically reduces most of it’s benefits. Due to very strict food safety regulations, less bacteria (including the “good” ones) can survive the manufacturing process. Many of the overly-processed products, including yogurt, has to undergo pasteurization or sterilization, which ends up destroying the beneficial bacteria. Commercial yogurt also contains added artificial sugars and flavours which further destroys the beneficial properties and is another reason why it can becomes a poor choice for the source of probiotics
What most people don’t realize is that yogurt manufactures often choose the types of bacteria they use because their abilities to turn sugar into lactic acid ,making milk curdle and turn into yogurt. Thus the bacteria is often selected for their ability to make smooth , creamy, and tasty yogurt but are not selected for their health benefits.
The Lactobacillus in popular brands of yogurt does not necessarily contain the lactobacillus usually found in probiotic pills and one should be aware of the difference when choosing a product.
Yogurt is usually L acidophilus or Lactobacillus bulgaricus. When choosing yogurt as your source of probiotics always make sure the packaging says “live cultured bacteria” or active cultures other wise you will not reap the benefits that yogurt has to offer for your health.
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