Thriving Within You

The tiniest life forms – microorganisms, exist naturally in the human gut. Though oblivious to many, they can do wonders for the intestinal tract. It is time to shed some light on our gut’s tiny residents.

Your gut harbours a dynamic population of over 400 species of bacteria counting to 100 trillion. They are collectively known as the ‘gut flora’. Contrary to popular belief, not all bacteria carry diseases. Many are surprisingly harmless to your gut!

A balanced gut flora has a higher ratio of good bacteria (about 85%) to bad bacteria (about 15%). The secret to maintain it lies in a regular intake of good bacteria or probiotics in our diet every day.

Which source of probiotics fits my needs?

Probiotic bacteria are primarily found in foods that undergo fermentation. Other than that, from supplements to cultured milk drinks, there is a wide range of options to choose from. Let’s get to know them all!

Fermented food
Fermentation is an ancient technique of preserving food and increasing its nutritional value. Pickled vegetables, yogurt and tapai are some examples of local probiotic staples in Malaysia. When selecting fermented foods, be sure to check for live beneficial cultures and keep them away from hot temperatures.

The pharmacy offers an array of probiotics in capsules, powders, liquids and other forms as dietary supplements. These products are usually formulated with specific bacterial cultures, each targeting certain health concerns such as managing skin diseases and lactose intolerance.

Cultured milk drinks
To produce probiotic cultured milk drinks like Yakult, certain strains of good bacteria are used to ferment dairy milk. Sugar is added as a food source to keep the probiotics alive and sustain their growth in the product during its shelf life. It is an affordable choice for consumers to reap the benefits of probiotics.

Check 1, 2 and 3!

Read the labels, there are useful clues to help you choose the probiotic source that you need.

1 – Type of strain matters

The health benefits of probiotics are strain-specific. Some products may contain multiple strains. Identify the type of probiotic strain used in the product to know what are the benefits to expect.

The unique strain in Yakult cultured milk drinks – Lacticaseibacillus paracasei Shirota strain or commonly known as Shirota strain, is one of the most extensively studied probiotic that has been proven to improve gut function. It is a notable strain in gut health especially for managing constipation, diarrhea and the immunity.

2 – How many are there in a serving?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines probiotics as live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host. The quantity of the bacteria must be labelled on the product packaging.

Each bottle of Yakult cultured milk drink contains over 30 billion of live probiotic Shirota strain. Drink a bottle of Yakult every day to enjoy the four main benefits of Shirota strain.

3 – How should I handle it?

Follow the instructions on the packaging to ensure that you are consuming the product effectively. Remember, the good bacteria should reach the intestines alive to qualify as a probiotic.

You may have known that Yakult cultured milk drinks should be stored in chilled conditions below 10◦C to maintain an effective number of the probiotic Shirota strain during its shelf life.

Spoilt for choices?

If you are planning to begin your daily probiotic fix, cultured milk drink is a convenient source of probiotic that is suitable for the young and old. Yakult for instance, tastes delicious on its own or can be incorporated in creative recipes such as fruit smoothies to complement a balanced diet while strengthening the gut function.

You can subscribe to our delivery service at an affordable price via Yakult Lady or purchase Yakult cultured milk drinks at any supermarkets or convenience stores.

You can subscribe to our delivery service at an affordable price via Yakult Lady or purchase Yakult cultured milk drinks at any supermarkets or convenience stores.

Despite having the upper hand for multiple and specific strains with an extended shelf life, probiotic supplements could cost a fortune for some unlike the inexpensive fermented foods or cultured milk drinks. Probiotic supplements might be a fair fit if you have milk allergies. However, the idea of swallowing down a tablet or two could be uncomfortable for certain individuals.

Whatever your criteria may be when choosing a preferred source of probiotic, pay extra attention to probiotic strains that are high in quality and thoroughly studied for its safety and benefits to human health.