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GI Health with Probiotics:

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The Facts from DaVinci Laboratories

The human body is a walking fermentation laboratory being home to trillions of live microorganisms that live inside us in our GI tract. While most of these microorganisms are harmless or play a positive role in maintaining good health of the body, some few are pathological and do contribute to disease if the opportunity arises. Probiotics include species or strains of beneficial bacteria normally present in the intestinal tract, which, according to the World Health Organization, Food and Agriculture and Food Organization, confer a health benefit to the host when administered in adequate levels. Probiotics are vital to optimum digestion and perform many positive functions in the gut including helping protect the body against the overgrowth of unwanted yeast and other pathogens (called dysbiosis).

The probiotics commonly used in dietary supplements are lactic acid producing bacteria (LAB) such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and bifidobacteria like Bifidobacterium bifidum. Cultured or fermented foods such as buttermilk, cheese, kefir, miso, sauerkraut, tempeh, and yogurt can be rich sources of these beneficial bacteria.

The term “probiotic” was first used in 1953 by Werner Kollarth and was defined as microbially derived factors that stimulate the growth of other microorganisms and beneficial cofactors. In 1989, Roy Fuller provided a widely used definition: “A live microbial feed supplement which beneficially affects the host animal by improving its intestinal balance.” Probiotics have been extensively used in the livestock industry to improve intestinal microbial balance. A healthy functioning GI tract results in better food conversion and health of the animal.

The flora in a healthy GI tract should consist of at least 85% lactobacillus and bifidobacterium and 15% coliform bacteria. In many people the typical colon count is reversed. Potential consequences of such an imbalance include excessive gas, bloating, intestinal and systemic toxicity, constipation, diarrhea, poor nutrient absorption, and overgrowth of Candida albicans. Probiotic supplementation has been found to be effective in supporting patients with many of these GI issues and restoring the GI tract to a healthier balance.*

The balance of healthy microorganisms can be upset or diminished by the following conditions:

  • Trauma or injury*
  • Stress — emotional and physical*
  • Environmental and/or food toxins*
  • Diarrhea*
  • Antibiotics and other medications*

What are the Health Benefits of Using Probiotics?

Maintaining a thriving population of friendly bacteria throughout the GI tract is required for proper assimilation of food and nourishment of the cells. This complex ecosystem aids digestion, promotes regularity, helps to remove toxins, and supports the immune system. Probiotics produce beneficial effects by producing important factors in the GI tract including lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide, enzymes, B vitamins, vitamin K, and natural antibiotic substances that inhibit pathogenic organisms.

Specific areas where supplemental probiotics provide benefits include:

Vitamin Production: Probiotics are capable of producing B vitamins including niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin, B6, B12, and folic acid. These vitamins are required cofactors for many metabolic reactions that are important for energy production, growth, reproduction, and digestion and synthesis of proteins and fats in the body.*


Digestive Enzymes: Probiotics produce needed enzymes such as lactase, needed to digest lactose. Deficiency of lactase can lead to inefficient digestion of milk sugar, or lactose, a condition known as lactose intolerance. Probiotics also produce enzymes to help breakdown proteins and fats for better absorption of amino acids and fatty acids.*

Cholesterol: Probiotics contain factors that help the body keep cholesterol in normal range. Animal studies have demonstrated the efficacy of some strains of LAB to impact cholesterol levels presumably by breaking down bile in the gut, thus interfering with its reabsorption as cholesterol.* (Sinha 1978)

Natural Microbial Support: Probiotics are know to produce acidophilin, which has been shown to possess (in-vitro) a wide range of microbiological activity against common food borne pathogens such as Streptococcus, E. coli, and Salmonella. (Shahani, 1977) Stressed rats that were fed probiotics had little occurrence of harmful bacteria latching to their intestinal walls as compared to controls. (Hitti, 2006)

Immune Function: Probiotics promote balanced bacterial and yeast flora in the GI tract through support of the immune system. It is well known that 60-70% of our immune response begins in the GI tract. The ability of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) to support the body’s ability to inhibit activity by microbial pathogens and to support the immune system has been documented in several studies. L. acidophilus helps the body keep the common yeast Candida albicans within normal limits, as well as support the deactivation of various viruses. There is evidence to support that probiotics may support immune function by competitive inhibition, supporting the number of antibodies including IgA , supporting phagocytosis, and optimizing the number of T lymphoctyes and natural killer cells.* (Gills, 2000; Perdigon, 1988)

Blood Pressure: A preliminary study has indicated that consumption of strains of LAB may help the body maintain healthy blood pressure, an effect possibly related to peptides produced during the fermentation process.*

Urologic Support: Probiotics have been found to help maintain urinary tract health. LAB appear to help the body metabolize and flush out uremic toxins that migrate into the bowels. Probiotics can support kidney health by supporting the body’s ability to slow the accumulation of toxins in the bloodstream. L. acidolphilus inhibits the growth and adhesion of unwanted microorganisms at the vaginal and urethral mucosa and renders positive effects in maintaining urinary tract health.* (Gerasimov, 2004)

Individuals striving to maintain optimum health will want to include a high yield, multi-strain probiotic product as part of their nutritional supplement regimen.

What are some of the Applications for Probiotics?

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Diarrhea

Recent studies have shown that probiotics may be effective in reducing the symptoms of various forms of gastroenteritis. Probiotics might reduce both the duration of illness and the frequency of stools. Diarrhea is usually the result of inflammation and an overgrowth of unwanted microorganisms. Excessive antibiotic use can lead to what is known as Antibiotic-Associat- ed Diarrhea (AAD). Probiotic use was shown to reduce the risk of AAD, improve stool consistency during antibiotic therapy and support immune response after vaccination.*

Intestinal epithelial cells line our gastrointestinal tract and are the first line of cell to come in contact with pathogens and the probiotics that may be present. During intestinal infections, pathogens can attach themselves to the epithelial cells resulting in diarrhea. It has been found that probiotics may support the epithelial cells’ production of mucin, a protective substance that coats the intestines and deters the attachment of the pathogen. In addition, research has shown that probiotics can both support the production of epithelial cells and cytokines, which are the body’s tool to counter the effects of the pathogens.

In one study, L. acidolphilus in combination with L casei significantly reduced diarrheal duration and vomiting in children ages 6-24 months suffering from persistent diarrhea. (Gaon, 2003) In another study, L. acidolphilus provided substantial protection against traveler’s diarrhea.* (Senhert, 1989)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Colitis

Probiotics use in individuals with severe GI disturbances have been found to produce significant results. In two published studies patients with irritable bowel syndrome using probiotics showed significant improvement in symptoms including abdominal comfort.* (Whorwell, 2006; Niedzielin, 2001).

Another study demonstrated an improvement in abdominal comfort and bloating and a reduction in stool frequency in individ- uals with constipation-predominant IBS. (Guyonnet, 2007) It is thought that probiotics primarily work by repopulating benefi- cial microorganisms in the color. Probiotics have been shown to help support the structure and function of the lining of the GI tract as well as help normalize a healthy flora population.*

Candidiasis

Candidiasis results when there is an overgrowth of the single cell fungus Candida albicans, and is generally known as a yeast infection in the body. It can affect various parts of the body including the mouth, ears, nose, gastrointestinal tract, and vagina, and can result in a wide range of symptoms including, but not limited to constipation, diarrhea, colitis, abdominal pain, mood swings, extreme fatigue, and vaginitis. Clinical studies have confirmed that probiotics with L. Acidolphilus and B. bifidum are effective in supporting the body’s ability to inhibit the growth of Candida albicans. Research has shown that L. acidophilus produced hydrogen peroxide helps in the inhibition of Candida albicans.* (Senhert, 1989)

The use of a high yield probiotic formula for patients with Candida is highly recommended as it will help the body clear the unwanted fungus from the GI tract and repopulate the lining of the GI tract with friendly microorganisms. It can im- prove bowel function by aiding peristalsis, helping the body keep harmful bacteria in check and eliminating toxic waste from the body.*

What makes Mega ProbioticTM 50 Unique?

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Not All Probiotics are Created Equal

According to the guidelines listed in “Probiotics: A Consumer Guide for making Smart Choices” as unveiled by the International Scientific Association for Probiotics (ISAPP), the five criteria that consumers should look for when selecting a probiotic are: “Benefi- cial probiotic strains used in the product, product stability, protec- tive packaging, product quality, and high probiotic activity in CFU per capsule.” Mega ProbioticTM 50 meets these criteria to bring the consumer a product of exceptional ability to help the body build and maintain a healthy digestive system.*

Because the human gastrointestinal tract contains over 400 dif- ferent microbes, it make sense that such a diverse GI environment would benefit from a multi-strain probiotic product rather than from a product with only one or two strains. Research has shown that different strains of probiotics populate different regions of the GI tract and are linked to specific health benefits. For that reason Mega ProbioticTM 50 is produced using nine different active strains to cover a wider spectrum of flora activity. These nine strains are:

L. acidolphilus, L. rhamnosus, B. longum, B. bifidum, B. lactis, B. breve, S. thermophilus, L. salivaris, and L. casei. These multiple strains are combined with the important prebiotic agent Fructooli- gosaccharides (FOS), a soluble fiber that selectively promotes the proliferation of the intestinal probiotics.*

More than Fifty Billion CFU per Capsule

Mega ProbioticTM 50 provides 52.5 billion CFU per capsule-- one of the highest activities of any probiotic on the market. This quality is important because this high activity of probiotics will deliver the maximum number of active friendly bacteria for optimum colo- nization of the lining of the digestive tract. Optimal colonization
is critical for individuals who have an unbalanced distribution of unwanted flora in their GI tract and need this highly active product to help clear the colon of unwanted material.*

Non-Dairy Source of Probiotics

The strains used in Mega ProbioticTM 50 are cultured to produce a highly purified product that is highly acceptable for people sensi- tive to dairy. Because the product is derived from a human source, the activity in the human GI tract is optimized.*

Safety and Stability

The probiotic strains used in Mega ProbioticTM 50 have long been considered safe and suitable for human con- sumption. Many of the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium strains have been added to human food for many years and multiple studies have addressed their safety.

The nine strains employed in the product have demonstrat- ed high gastrointestinal compatibility. Testing has shown that the product has a high tolerance and stability to low acid pH and bile salts, as well as good resistance to pepsin and pancreatin enzymes. The product is formulated using a very large overage at time of manufacture to guarantee that the product will meet label claim up to its time of expi- ration, 24 months.*

 

Prebiotics

Q. What are prebiotics?

A. Unlike probiotics, which are living bacteria strains, prebiotics are non-living substances (like fructooligosaccharides) that interact with microorganisms. They provide an environment for fermentation wherein naturally present beneficial microflora can grow and metabolically thrive. Prebiotics are indicated to support those with symptoms of an unbalanced microbiological environment such as:

  • Upset Stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Colitis
  • Candidiasis

 Q. What are Fructooligosaccharides?

A. Fructooligosaccharides are a source of soluble
fiber. Carbohydrates that stimulate growth/activity in intestinal microflora upon contact, FOS are said to act selectively, assisting in calcium absorption and the development of beneficial bacteria. Inulin and oligofructose are colonic foods, escaping digestion in the gut and acting as substrates to fit the preference of such bacteria as Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus.

Q. How are they beneficial?

A. Because prebiotics are non-digestible, they
act within the colon to produce byproducts like short-chain fatty acids, and help the body lower intestinal pH. The prebiotics’ location allows them to exert beneficial effects such as:

  • Supporting a fermentation environment where beneficial microflora can grow*
  • Helping the body prevent the invasion of harmful microorganisms through protection of the bowel lining*
  • Supporting calcium absorption*

Summary Information on the Probiotic Strains in Mega ProbioticTM 50

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Lactobacillus acidolphilus

  • Well-suited for intestinal survival
  • Contributes to a good balance of intestinal flora*
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*
  • Promotes a balanced immune defense system*
  • Strong lactic acid producer*
  • Supports individuals experiencing irregularity (diarrhea and constipation)*

Lactobacillus acidolphilus

  • Well-suited for intestinal survival
  • High tolerance to acid and bile as present in the intestines
  • Provides strong adhesion to the intestinal cell wall • Gives beneficial modulation of immune function*

Bifidobacterium longum

  • Well-suited for intestinal survival
  • Tolerant to acid and bile
  • Provides strong adherence to intestinal mucosa
  • Lactic acid producer
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms* Bifidobacterium bibidum
  • Strong lactic acid producer
  • Promotes regularity*
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*

Bifidobacterium bibidum

  • Strong lactic acid producer
  • Promotes regularity*
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*
  • Helps the body remove intestinal toxins*
  • Promotes favorable flora environment*

Bifidobacterium breve

  • Lactic acid producer
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*
  • Beneficial to a immune response*
  • Promotes a healthy balance of intestinal flora*
  • Supports digestive health*
  • Strong adhesion to intestinal cell wall

Streptococcus thermophilus

  • Well-suited for intestinal survival
  • Good balance to acid and bile as present in the intestines
  • Strong adhesion to mucosal cell walls of the intestines
  • Provides beneficial modification and regulation of the immune response*
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*

Lactobacillis salivarus

  • Well-suited for intestinal survival
  • Strong adhesion to the intestinal cell wall
  • High tolerance for acid and bile found in the intestines
  • Supports the immune system*

Lactobacillus casei

  • Strong lactic acid producer
  • Strong adhesion to the intestinal cell wall
  • Supports the immune function and regulation*
  • Creates an unfavorable environment for unwanted microorganisms*
  • Supports patients with diarrhea*

Natural Support for many GI Issues

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Mega ProbioticTM 50 from DaVinci® represents the first line of defense for GI health and maintenance, and the solution to many GI issues facing your patients. This com- prehensive and high yield probiotic is backed by extensive research and years of clinical practice. It has been for- mulated to provide professional levels of beneficial micro flora to the GI tract, which will promote a healthy tract lin- ing, regularity, and microbial balance, and support immune function. Benefits for Mega ProbioticTM 50 include:

  • Helps the body eliminate unwanted microorganisms from the GI tract*
  • Helps restore healthy balance of micro flora*
  • Aids digestion*
  • Supports regularity*
  • Stabilizes lining of the GI tract*
  • Supports immune function*
  • Helps produce key vitamins and enzymes*
  • Helps the body reduce toxins in the colon*
  • Supports individuals experiencing bloating, gas and diarrhea*

When is the best time to take Mega ProbioticTM 50?

Because the Mega ProbioticTM 50 product is acid and bile resistant, the product can be taken anytime and still be effective. The best time for consumption, accord- ing to the manufacturer, would be between meals or 15 minutes before breakfast when stomach acid levels are lowest.

Who should not take Mega ProbioticTM 50

Individuals who are on antibiotics or other drugs which may not be compatible with probiotics should not take this product. Women who are pregnant should also avoid taking Mega ProbioticTM 50. It is advisable for patients discuss their regimen with their doctor if on medications for other health issues.

Safety and Stability

The probiotic strains used in Mega ProbioticTM 50 have long been considered safe and suitable for human con- sumption. Many of the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium strains have been added to human food for many years and multiple studies have addressed their safety.

The nine strains employed in the product have demonstrat- ed high gastrointestinal compatibility. Testing has shown that the product has a high tolerance and stability to low acid pH and bile salts, as well as good resistance to pepsin and pancreatin enzymes. The product is formulated using a very large overage at time of manufacture to guarantee that the product will meet label claim up to its time of expi- ration, 24 months.*

Supplement Facts

Amount Per Serving                                                                                        256 mg

Stabilized Nondairy Probiotic Complex (52.5 Billion CFU)Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus casei, Fructooligo saccharides (FOS), Lactobacillus salivarius, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Streptococcus thermophilus, Bifidobacterium breve, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium longum

Other Incredients: microcrystalline cellulose, vegetable cellulose (capsule), ascorbyl palmitate, silica. 

Suggested Use
As a dietary supplement, take 1 capsule once or twice daily between meals, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Warning
If you are pregnant do not take this product.

About DaVinci® Laboratories

For over 45 years, DaVinci® Laboratories has developed and produced leading edge, high quality supplements exclusively for health care professionals.

In 1972, Guido and Maria Orlandi founded FoodScience Corporation on a passion for discovering natural alternatives for hu- man and animal health solutions. Our flagship product, N,N-Dimethylglycine (DMG), led the charge.

Today, a high level of innovation and evidence-based science form a strong foundation of our product development process. Research and Development team members work closely with our Scientific Review Boards to help ensure these values lead the careful creation of every one of our formulas.

The Orlandi family’s original commitment to finding the best natural alternative health solutions stuck with the family through the years. Guido’s son, Dom, and Dom’s wife, Claudia, moved the company forward based on these foundational principles. Today, two members of the Orlandi family play integral roles in management. Guido’s grandson, Dom, is president and Clau- dia manages the family trust which owns our company.

Over 45 years of experience in product development now allows our company to provide custom formulation and private labeling options for our customers who, like Guido Orlandi, are wholly committed to health, science and innovation.