The exact underlying mechanism remains unknown. However, at old age, the composition of the gut microbiota changes significantly and such changes are often influenced by various extrinsic factors such as changes in metabolic functions, lifestyle, dietary habits, and exercise habits. Age-related changes in gut microbiota composition will emerge as one of the most important research topics in the future.
The genus Bifidobacterium encompasses approximately 80 species, including 10 subspecies that naturally inhabit the human or animal intestines. In general, Bifidobacterium play a pivotal role in regulation of intestinal, immune and metabolic functions. However, not all bifidobacteria are the same and not all species confer the same beneficial effects. The beneficial functions of bifidobacteria are strain-specific and residential origin-dependent. Numerous beneficial functions of bifidobacteria have been reported, including intestinal regulation (improvement of gut microbiota and intestinal environment), anti-infections, anti-allergy, anti-obesity, alleviation of ulcerative colitis, and prevention of colon cancer.
There is no data directly investigate the effects of probiotics ingestion timing. However, consistency is more important than timing. In general, it is advisable to take probiotics with minimized acid stress during passage through the stomach. For example, it is a good idea to take probiotics with milk or yogurt between meals.
Studies have shown that intake of specific probiotic strains during antibiotics treatment could be effective at alleviating antibiotics-related gastrointestinal disorders and side effects in infant and adults. The beneficial effects of the probiotics are less likely to be affected when they are consumed while taking a course of antibiotics. If you are being treated for a particular illness, consult with your doctor before taking probiotics.
Current research data shows that adding more strains does not always lead to better health effects. Choice of appropriate probiotic should be based, not on the number of strains in the product, rather based on evidence-based trials of efficacy. It is important to select multi-strain probiotic mixtures that possess clinically proven health effects.
Regardless of the format of the probiotics, the most important factor is that the probiotics product contain live and active bacterial strains. It is preferable that probiotics bacteria remain viable and are not damaged as much as possible in the manufacturing process, and from this point of view, powder sachet or capsules are better options.
In general, when probiotics are ingested, the ingested bacteria do not colonize and persist in the gut. In this sense, discontinuation of ingestion, the ingested bacteria will eventually be eliminated from the intestine, regardless of the origin of the probiotics bacteria. Nonetheless, studies have confirmed that animal-derived bifidobacteria cannot survive in human breast milk, corroborating the notion that Human-Residential Bifidobacteria (HRB) are naturally selected by human breast milk for infants.
The differences in the health effects between regions and ethics remain unknown. However, the health effects of certain probiotic strains such as Bifidobacterium longum BB536 and B. breve M-16V have been extensively studied and confirmed in many countries and regions across the globe. Although different ethnics and races may have different composition of gut microbiota and various ecological factors may influence the effects of a probiotic strain, it appears that changes in gut microbiota composition are greatly affected by the dietary habits.
There are limited information on the differences between plant- and human- or animal-derived probiotics since it is difficult to compare their health effects in clinical trials at the same time. The health-promoting effects of probiotics are strain-specific and thus it is essential to study the effects of probiotics in humans. Given the fact that probiotics bacteria may have adapted to specific host environment, bacterial species of human-residential origin are better for human host.
Human gastrointestinal tract and the intestinal environment vary from one individual to another and thus it is not possible to give an exact numerical value. It is important to ensure that as many bacteria as possible are delivered to the intestine. Since our probiotics powder contains a relatively high number of bacteria and they are resistant to gastric acid, it is expected to be highly accessible.
There may be no significant physical effect for healthy individuals because probiotics are taken as a preventive measure. However, since the gut microbiota are constantly affected by daily lifestyle and environment, it is important to constantly consume probiotics. It is also essential to continue consume probiotics on a daily basis since the bacteria are usually excreted out of the body in days to weeks.
Postprandial ingestion is recommended for healthy individuals to increase the intestinal pH.
Numerous clinical studies have confirmed the safety of a somewhat higher number of probiotics bacteria in human subjects. However, taking excess probiotics doesn't necessarily mean better outcomes and, instead, might lead to some mildly uncomfortable side effects such as bloating, gas, and nausea. Therefore, it is recommended to take an appropriate amount of probiotics that have been clinically proven to be effective.
Unlike the unidirectional medicinal products, probiotics work in a way that modulating the state of gut microbiota closer to normal.