What Is Acidophilus

Acidophilus is a probiotic

Recently I was diagnosed with hypertension or commonly called high blood pressure. My daughter immediately bought me two health supplements which were supposed to be beneficial for my health condition. One was “mega acidophilus” while the other was “hawthorn”. Acidophilus is a probiotic, while the latter is a herbal supplement. The label on the bottle of “mega acidophilus” supplement just states “Probiotics helps improve beneficial intestinal microflora”. What’s the meaning of this statement? Beats me.

The best way is to surf the internet. Here, I like to share with you what I have learned about acidophilus. As for the hawthorn supplement, you can read about it from the link at the end of this article on the right column. First, the medical definition of “probiotic” which is "live microbial feed supplement which beneficially affects the host animal by improving its intestinal microbial balance". Honestly, I am still not sure what this means!

Put it in simple layman’s language, it means that probiotics are live bacteria that are good for our health. These probiotic micro-organisms help our bodies to stay healthy, unlike those nasty bad bacteria which bring illness to us.

Mega acidophilus supplement
Mega acidophilus supplement | Source

Benefits of acidophilus

Acidophilus is a species of bacteria belonging to the Lactobacillus genus. It is a probiotic of good bacteria which fights off bad bacteria in our digestive system. The meaning of “acidophilus” is “acid loving” in Latin. They are naturally found in the gastrointestinal tract, mouth, and vagina. Fermented dairy products like yoghurt contains acidophilus.

Acidophilus helps prevent infections, promote digestion and maintain overall health. Our digestive system requires bacteria to digest and absorb foods. There are however, bad bacteria such as E. Coli present in our digestive system, and we need good bacteria like acidophilus to fight them off.

Acidophilus and side effects

Acidophilus are good bacteria and are good for everyone. The most common product containing acidophilus is the popular yoghurt. If you are on antibiotics, avoid taking acidophilus as the antibiotics will kill off the acidophilus.

Possible side effects :

· Gas buid-up causing stomach fullness and flatulence.

· Temporary diarrhea.

· Allergic response, skin rashes.

· Sudden swelling on the lips, face or throat.

· May experience flu-like symptoms.

· Disorientation and slurred speech.

· Burning sensation around vagina.

Caution: Although most of the side effects are not serious, we must still be alert to prevent any untoward health problem. Please be careful, too much acidophilus may be detrimental to health. The recommended dosage of acidophilus is between 1 billion and 10 billion bacteria per day, spread over 3 or 4 doses during the day. People with suppressed immune system, intestinal damage, or stomach problem should avoid taking acidophilus.

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Anna Maria Nava profile image

Anna Maria Nava 3 years ago from Switzerland

Acidophilus are useful bacteria, I take acidophilus supplement when I need to take antibiotics, because antibiotics destroy useful bacteria that reside in your stomach.

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