The Pluses of Probiotics - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Monday, March 10, 2003

The Pluses of Probiotics

In the 1940s we found chemicals that would kill bacteria and we called them antibiotics. The Penicillin, Streptomycin - those were the first ones and they saved millions of lives. Of course we have many new ones, and they're much more effective - easier to take with less side effects. They can be expensive, but they're all called the same thing, antibiotics, that kill bacteria.

But in the practice of medicine we have something else. It's called probiotics, in other words, something that helps bacteria, or helpful bacteria, and we can use them to help you. Let me show you what they are.

Probiotics are actually bacteria in a capsule - this is the way they look. But a recent study of 26 different brands showed that one third of them had less than 1% of the active ingredient, in other words the bacteria in them, so you have to read it very carefully, and it has to say 1 to 10 billion bacteria per capsule. It also has to be refrigerated because the bacteria will die if you don't do it.

Now if you do that you'll get the benefit of the probiotics which increases your immunity, prevents infection, prevents cancer, and also can help treat both of them. So the bottom line here is whether it be antibiotics or probiotics, you got to know your stuff. Read those labels and if you don't know, ask your doctor.

I'm Dr David Vastola and that's life.

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