What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are defined as microorganisms that are believed to provide health benefits when consumed. The term probiotic is currently used to name ingested microorganisms associated with benefits for humans and animals. The term came into more common use after 1980. The introduction of the concept (but not the term) is generally attributed to Nobel laureate Élie Metchnikoff, who postulated that yogurt-consuming Bulgarian peasants lived longer lives because of this custom. He suggested in 1907 that “the dependence of the intestinal microbes on the food makes it possible to adopt measures to modify the flora in our bodies and to replace the harmful microbes by useful microbes”. A significant expansion of the potential market for probiotics has led to higher requirements for scientific substantiation of putative benefits conferred by the microorganisms.

Although there are numerous claimed benefits of using commercial probiotics, such as reducing gastrointestinal discomfort, improving immune health, relieving constipation, or avoiding the common cold, such claims are not backed by scientific evidence and are prevented as deceptive advertisements in the United States by the Federal Trade Commission.

Probiotics are considered to be generally safe, but they may cause bacteria-host interactions and unwanted side effects in rare cases.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Probiotic


What are Microbiomes?

“A microbiota is an “ecological community of commensal, symbiotic and pathogenic microorganisms” found in and on all multicellular organisms studied to date from plants to animals. A microbiota includes bacteria, archaea, protists, fungi, and viruses. Microbiota has been found to be crucial for immunologic, hormonal and metabolic homeostasis of their host. The synonymous term microbiome describes either the collective genomes of the microorganisms that reside in an environmental niche or the microorganisms themselves. The microbiome and host emerged during evolution as a synergistic unit from epigenetics and genetic characteristics, sometimes collectively referred to as a holobiont.

All plants and animals, from protists to humans, live in close association with microbial organisms (see for example the human microbiome). Up until relatively recently, however, biologists have defined the interactions of plants and animals with the microbial world mostly in the context of disease states and of a relatively small number of symbiotic case studies. Organisms do not live in isolation but have evolved in the context of complex communities. A number of advances have driven a change in the perception of microbiomes, including:

  • The ability to perform genomic and gene expression analyses of single cells and even of entire microbial communities in the new disciplines of metagenomics and metatranscriptomics.
  • massive databases making this information accessible to researchers across multiple disciplines.
  • methods of mathematical analysis that help researchers to make sense of complex data sets.

Increasingly, biologists have come to appreciate that microbes make up an important part of an organism’s phenotype, far beyond the occasional symbiotic case study.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microbiota


What is staphylococcal enteritis?

Staphylococcal enteritis is an inflammation that is usually caused by eating or drinking substances contaminated with staph enterotoxin. The toxin, not the bacterium, settles in the small intestine and cause inflammation and swelling. This in turn can cause abdominal pain, cramping, dehydration, diarrhea, and fever.

Common symptoms of Staphylococcus aureus food poisoning include a rapid onset which is usually 1–6 hours, nausea, explosive vomiting for up to 24 hours, abdominal cramps/pain, headache, weakness, diarrhea and usually a subnormal body temperature. Symptoms usually start one to six hours after eating and last less than 12 hours. The duration of some cases may take two or more days to fully resolve.