A probiotic a day keeps the Doctor away (really?)

By definition, probiotics are alive and they must be administered “alive” to be effective. The methods of shipping, storage and freight are crucial to ensure you get the most “bugs for your buck”.

We usually think of bacteria as germs or something that makes us sick. But the body is full of good and the bad bacteria – more than 500 strains in fact!

Probiotics are the “good” bacteria that keeps you healthy in a myriad of ways:

  • Supports the digestion
  • Keeps the gut healthy
  • Strengthen immunity
  • Prevents allergies
  • Reduces inflammation
  • Supports brain function

Many probiotics are temperature sensitive and if they are not shipped or stored in the proper conditions by the time they are consumed, these wonderful strains of good bacteria are no use.

There are so many strains of these good bacteria, all with different functions and benefits. it can be divided into two groups, the first type of good bacteria linger after being eaten and take up residence, reproduce, and colonise in our gastrointestinal tract (GIT); they do useful things like by protecting the GIT lining, helping digestion and supporting immunity. These are the bacteria hardest hit by antibiotics, which is why it is important to replenish your GIT during or after a course of antibiotics.

The other good bacteria is transients – they don’t stick around – they create by-products that help the colonising populations to thrive. They also support the everyday work of probiotics. These transient good bacteria are one of the main reasons why most naturopaths recommend taking probiotics daily so as to continuously replenish these good bacteria and keep their levels sufficiently high.

Two good examples of beneficial transient bacteria is the Lactobacillus bugaricus and Streptococcus thermophillus. Lactobacillus bugaricus produces large amounts of lactase, which helps break down lactose. This is especially helpful for those who are lactose sensitive as well as supporting people who enjoy eating dairy products. Streptococcus thermophillus produces the natural antioxidant SOD (superoxide dismutase) that combats free radicals generated by pollution, stress and chemicals.

All probiotics stocked at IMI have been air-freighted directly to us in Hong Kong under refrigeration. They are stored in a government-approved temperature and humidity-controlled environment, and then kept refrigerated in IMI dispensary before being shipped out to you with cool gel for temperature control – to ensure optimal quality. All this effort is made to ensure that you can say with confidence, “my probiotics are alive!”

If you are unsure of which probiotic is right for you, visit our dispensary in person, ask an expert or book a consultation with a naturopath.

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