Beneficial Bacteria

Posted on August 28, 2006  Comments (6)

Sick of Getting Sick? Embrace Your Inner Bacteria!, NPR:

Over there, one type of bacteria has settled into a tidy corner of your intestine and is helping to synthesize vitamin K from last night’s dinner. That’s an important blood-clotting substance. And without the help of a neighboring microbe, the broccoli you downed would be no more digestible than a fallen log.

Right this minute, in the moist, warm grottos throughout your body, encounters with friendly bacteria are teaching your immune cells how to recognize dangerous invaders. The ability to distinguish friend from foe is crucial to keeping you healthy. And by acting as a thick ground cover, these benign bacteria crowd out truly noxious germs — salmonella, say, or dangerous versions of E. coli.

The title of NPR’s article is a bit misleading as the focus of the story is really on the potential harm from antibiotics. Bacterial Evolution in Yogurt provides some additional information on the benefits of bacteria. Here are more good bacteria articles:: Friendly bacteria ‘target ulcers’Over-sixties advised to boost daily diet with ‘good’ bacteriaUSC researcher underscores the benefits bacteria can provideBacteria Added to Gum, Toothpaste and DeodorantHow ‘good’ bacteria could counter overuse of antibiotics

via: Take care of those microbes in your gut

Related: articles on the overuse of antibioticsAntibiotic Resistance and You

6 Responses to “Beneficial Bacteria”

  1. docwrite
    August 29th, 2006 @ 9:32 pm

    All yogurts are not created equAL, and some may have killed and not live bacteria. Similarly, not all commercial probiotic brands (capsules etc)are created equal. There is a wide diversity in the strains of bacteria and their concentration in different formulations thus affecting their benefit potential.

  2. CuriousCat: Microbes on Earth
    November 8th, 2006 @ 9:31 pm

    Like explorers of old, scientists are venturing into the immense but little-known realm of the microscopic organisms that dominate our planet.
    “It’s an entire world that most of us have no idea about,”…

  3. Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog » Hacking Your Body’s Bacteria
    April 27th, 2007 @ 7:08 pm

    “In sheer numbers, bacterial cells in the body outnumber our own by a factor of 10, with 50 trillion bacteria living in the digestive system alone, where they’ve remained largely unstudied until the last decade…”

  4. CuriousCat: Tracking the Ecosystem Within Us
    June 25th, 2007 @ 8:23 pm

    I find this area and this study fascinating. I’m not exactly sure why this study and the incredibly significant positive bacteria for human life news doesn’t get more notice. Oh well I guess there are not cool pictures of robots or scary stories of potential threats…

  5. Curious Cat Science and Engineering Blog » People Have More Bacterial Cells than Human Cells
    February 23rd, 2008 @ 9:10 pm

    “there are estimated to be more than 500 species living at any one time in an adult intestine, the majority belong to two phyla, the Firmicutes (which include Streptococcus, Clostridium and Staphylococcus), and the Bacteroidetes (which include Flavobacterium)…”

  6. Nathan
    March 7th, 2009 @ 2:31 am

    I fully agree with ‘docwrite’. If you buy probiotic supplement as with everything, make sure that the brand is trustworthy. Probiotics is indeed good for human health but make sure you give your body the right kind of bacteria.

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