Probiotic cultures are living microbacteria that thrive in the human gastrointestinal tract and help to improve digestive functions and maintain the ecological balance of the gut and intestines. Bifidus is an example of these cultures. Although the species acidophilus is generally more popular in the United States, in Europe and Japan, bifidus is the forerunner. Bifidobacterium is a genus of anaerobic bacteria which lives in the gastrointestinal tract. It is one of the most prevalent bacteria among the hundred of species of gut flora; there are a number of different strains, each with singular health benefits.
Bifidus regularis can only be found in Dannon’s Activia line of yogurt. The company chose this specific probiotic because it is able to survive the journey through the digestive tract and into the colon where it can take effect. B. regularis has an overall beneficial effect on the digestive tract. It can also help to prevent constipation and boost the immune system.
Bifidobacterium bifidum is another strain of friendly probiotic which lives in the intestine and in smaller quantities in beast milk, the vagina and mouth. It has been shown to have a number of beneficial effects including curing and preventing yeast infection, urinary tract infection, high cholesterol, diarrhea, tooth decay and allergies. This type of bifidus can be taken in supplement form.
Bifidobacterium longum is often the most dominant of the friendly bacteria found in the human body. It is the first strain of bacteria to colonize the intestinal tract of newborns and is responsible for fermenting sugars into lactic acids. Its health benefits are numerous and include reducing the risk of certain types of cancer, reducing allergy symptoms, boosting the immune system, improving the absorption of calcium and improving constipation.
Bifidobacterium infantis has been known for some time to be beneficial for preventing inflammation associated with a range of conditions including arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, colitis and type 1 diabetes. More recent studies indicate that B. infantis may also be a valuable treatment for inflammatory symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Bifidobacterium lactis is another strain of bifidus that inhabits the intestinal tract. Often closely linked with Bifidobacterium animalis, B. lactis has been shown to be beneficial for a number of health problems including gluten allergies, reducing the risk of cancer, improving the overall digestive system and improving the function of the immune system.