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Veterinarian Reviewed on June 20, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
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Acidophilus is a term that is used to describe a group of bacteria that are primarily used to help aid in a person’s proper digestion, as well as to have a healthy colon. Lactobacillus Acidophilus is one of the many strains of beneficial bacteria that have been added to a variety of milk products such as yoghurt, milk based drinks and cheeses. Lactobacillus acidophilus may also be combined with other good bacteria in order to promote better overall colon health and better immune system functionality.

Acidophilus actually lives and thrives in the human digestive tract, the oral mucosa and even in the female genitalia. Lactobacillus acidophilus helps maintain an acidic environment and this is what yeasts, harmful organisms and fungus hate.

History and Origin

The study of the effect of acidophilus to promote a healthier colon and to improve overall immune system functioning was first done in the early 20th century. It was during this time when Probiotics, the inclusion of beneficial bacteria to food or drinks to fight harmful organisms, was being discovered. Acidophilus is just one of the many strains of good bacteria that can help promote overall wellness and fight illnesses as well.

Ancient Uses

The use of acidophilus and the probiotic treatment were unheard of during the ancient times. Ancient tribes and cultures mainly relied on eating healthy food and living a healthy lifestyle in order to have overall wellness and to fight off any diseases. Illnesses were treated with herbal remedies that were found naturally everywhere.

Modern Uses

Acidophilus or Lactobacillus acidophilus strains added to milk products, especially yoghurt has been known to treat yeast infections and to decrease the bad bacteria population in a person’s gastrointestinal system.

You can also prevent many infections, strengthen the immune system and have more energy to do more activities when you take regular doses of food and milk products fortified with acidophilus. With a healthy colon, nutrients and energy from food are better utilized. Your body may have more energy to spare as well.

It can prevent and treat diarrhea in children as well as in adults. It can also help ensure proper brain development in young children, with nutrients in food absorbed properly through a healthy colon.
Acidophilus supplements can also benefit people who are dieting. After doing colon cleansing, a healthy dose of Lactobacillus acidophilus is a must to increase the good bacteria population in the gut.

Side Effects

Lactobacillus acidophilus fortified milk products and supplements are encouraged for everyone. Women who are pregnant and breastfeeding are also advised to drink or eat foods rich in good bacteria on a regular basis. There are absolutely no side effects and any adverse drug reactions with acidophilus.

There are people who may have an allergic reaction to milk products and to products that are fortified with acidophilus; at the first sign of an allergic reaction, seek medical help at once.
Using acidophilus and probiotics for the treatment of yeast infections and other illnesses does not take the place of taking prescribed antibiotics. Always consult a medical expert for diagnosis and medications for any infection. Always follow your doctor’s advice for the appropriate treatment of any illness or infection. Consult a home remedy before starting treatment.

Read also: Jewelweed Herb

Our Expert

Paulina Nelega, RH
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan

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