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What are the criteria for selecting a probiotic?

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  • The choice of the brand of probiotics: The lack of rigor and control of some natural health products may leave some doubt about their quality. It is therefore important to validate the credibility of the manufacturer. However, notwithstanding the effectiveness, the risk associated with the use of a probiotic is very low.
  • Characterization of bacterial strains: The use of a micro-organism as a probiotic assumes that the strain used is perfectly identified, regularly controlled and declared when it is marketed.
  • Gastric and biliary resistance: Although an adequate number of bacteria can be found in a product, it is important to ensure that bacteria survive to the acidity of the stomach and to the intestinal tract.
  • The ability to adhere to the intestinal epithelium: The adhesion criterion must be widely considered in the evaluation of a probiotic product. Adhesion to the intestinal mucosa increases the retention time of probiotics in the intestine and leads to a stronger interaction with the host’s immune system.
  • Long-term persistence: Bacteria should be present in the gut one week after consumption and in good concentration.
  • Minimal impact on healthy intestinal flora: Probiotics should not have a major negative impact on the natural intestinal flora of the host.
  • The number of bacteria: For maximum effect, preference is given to products that contain between 5 and 10 billion bacteria per dose. Some people do not tolerate doses exceeding 20 billion and suffer from bloating.
  • Antibiotic resistance: The probiotic must not have acquired resistance to antibiotics so as not to reduce the effectiveness of antibiotic treatment. Exposure to certain types of bacteria encourages the development of resistance to important antibiotics.

 

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