Monday 27 September 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm | Probiotics Q&A

Marla Ahlgrimm

Did you know that your body isn’t your own? You are made up of billions of bacteria, yeasts, and other organisms. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, there are likely more microorganisms in your body than there are humans on the planet. What are they? Some of them are probiotics. 
Q: What are probiotics? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: Probiotics are essentially good microbes. The term is a catchall for the protozoa, fungi, yeast, viruses, and bacteria that live within your body, mostly inside of your gut. They are a diverse community, and one that your body needs to function correctly. They make up your microbiome. 

Q: What makes a probiotic different from a normal microbe? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: There are four key differentiators. First is that you have to be able to consume these organisms safely. They also have to have some type of benefit to your body and, importantly, be strong enough to survive after ingestion. Another describing factor of a probiotic is that it must be isolated from you; in other words, it can’t attach itself to your body, it must live independently inside of you. 
Q: Aside from the gut, where do probiotics live? 
Marla Ahlgrimm
Marla Ahlgrimm
: The quick answer: everywhere. However, there are several “hotspots” colonies within your body. In addition to your gut, you can find major populations of microbes on your skin, in your lungs, in your mouth, in your urinary tract, and, for women, in and around the vagina.  
Q: What, exactly, do probiotics do? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: They more or less keep your body in balance. Good bacteria helps you digest food and act as nature’s bouncers, kicking bad bacteria out of your body. They also work around the clock creating vitamins and supporting cells. Importantly, probiotics also help your body absorb medications.


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