ACADEMIA NACIONAL DE MEDICINA DE COLOMBIA

Probiotics: Immunomodulation and clinical research

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Probiotics are microbes that confer health benefits. Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus are the most widely recognized probiotic bacteria. The history of the oral consumption of micro-organisms producing a protective effect on the gut flora began a very long time ago with fermented foods.

Over the last two decades there has been growing interest on both basic and clinical science in probiotics which has resulted in over 6000 publications in the biomedical literature, with over 60% published in the last 5 years, some in the top ranking scientific journals.

The type of the microbes used as Probiotics increased due to the increase in the research concerning the subject as well as by the increase of the newly discovered and identified microbes, which could be used as Probiotics.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) probiotics are defined as live microorganisms, which when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.

The best probiotic supplements and foods will improve the beneficial bacteria to help crowd out the opportunistic bacteria, boost the immune system to protect against pathogenic bacteria, as well as break down fibrous foods into more digestible components and help your body produce vitamins such as K and B12.

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