Reprinted with permission from Amy Tenderich of www.diabetesmine.com.
From the Who-Knew? File:
Here I've been scoffing at these yogurt companies for pitching me on reviewing their products that are supposedly oh-so-good for people with diabetes (sneer). But now I discover that there really is such thing as a "super-yogurt culture" used to treat everything from diabetes to diarrhea -- that's starting to show up in lots of products on ordinary supermarket shelves.
Yes, these "probiotic products" (mostly dairy foods and dietary supplements) contain a "good bacteria" that doctors have apparently been long recommending to counter the effects of antibiotics, which kill your good bacteria along with the bad.
I know that my doctor, for one, has long been harping on the fact that everyone can benefit from consuming live yogurt cultures, which supplement the microbes found in your gastrointestinal system (i.e. give you healthy intestines).
What I didn't know was that clinical studies have actually confirmed that probiotics can also help reduce the incidence of certain cancers and heart disease, and help prevent vaginal diseases and preterm labor.
Check this out: " Probiotics was first conceptualized by the Russian Nobel Prize winner and father of modern immunology, Elie Metchnikoff, at the beginning of the 20th century. He believed that the fermenting bacteria in milk products consumed by Bulgarian peasants were responsible for their longevity and good health."
I love how the article notes that the History of Medicine has come full circle: We started around 2000 BC with "here, eat this root." And moved on to "drink this snake oil," "swallow this pill," and finally, "take this penicillin/tetracycline." Now we're essentially back to "eat this root." Or natural live microorganisms, in this case. He, he!
A few years ago, experts were predicting that we'd soon see probiotics "included in everything from cheese to ice cream and even some preserved meats, like salami" (The Scientist, 7/02). I don't know about that, but I am giving DanActive another look. Usually, I just eat whatever lowfat yogurt tastes good and appeals to me. Silly.
I really should pay more attention to diet. Don't you think?
Published On: May 01, 2006