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Louse 11-18-2005 10:45 AM

Microbes are good for you!
Daily dose of good bacteria cuts sick leave Thu Nov 17,10:23 AM ET

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Workers who took a daily dose of beneficial bacteria, also known as probiotics, were much less likely to call in sick than their colleagues given a placebo, a new study from Sweden shows.


Probiotics are contained in yogurt and other fermented foods. They've been shown to have a number of positive health effects, helping, for example, to prevent gastrointestinal ills and to boost immune system function.

Dr. Py Tubelius and colleagues from Tetra Pak Occupational Health and Safety AB conducted the current study to determine if one probiotic, Lactobacillus reuteri, might help prevent sick leave due to respiratory or gastrointestinal infections.

They randomly assigned 262 employees of the company to take a drink containing L. reuteri or a placebo drink every day for 80 days. A total of 181 workers completed the study.

Twenty-three of the 87 workers on placebo, or about 26%, took sick leave during the course of the study, compared to 10 of the workers taking the probiotic, or 11%. Among the subset of workers on the night shift, none of the 26 taking the probiotic called in sick, compared to 9 of their 27 colleagues, or 33%.

Shift workers are known to be more prone to develop stomach ailments, colds and other types of short-term illness leading to sick leave, Tubelius and his team note in the journal Environmental Health.

While the mechanism by which the probiotic might help prevent illnesses isn't clear, the researchers add, it's likely that it helped to strengthen immune function.

"Shift-workers are known to be at risk for having a weaker immuno-defence as compared to those working day-time shifts only," they note. "Consequently it can be argued that shift-workers would benefit relatively more by the immune stimulating effect of L. reuteri."

Further studies are needed to investigate this issue, they conclude.

kskerr 11-18-2005 09:19 PM

Good article, there is a ton of research supporting probiotics. Some have been shown to help with autoimmune disorders. I am currently working in a lab that works with beneficial microbes (hope to stay in it), I believe the one I am working with either is or potentially is a probiotic. It is the causative agent of swiss cheese, I consider it a cheese pathogen since I do not like swiss :).


pommie 03-10-2006 10:02 AM

Hi i did hear about this probiotics is it the same thing that involves people to take or consume live bacteria? if this is so then what is the actuaal need for it as if i have not hear this wrongly then there are already many bacteria present in the immune system or wherever in the human body and they i feel are enough to take care about this thing isnt it?

davis 03-21-2006 11:49 AM

No, infact there are certain times when the bacteria that are present in the human system fall weak then there is the requirement of these bacterias to be entered thru the system. I learnt about this from a Health Forum and there was also mentioned the need and benefits of this whole process.

kskerr 03-26-2006 01:50 AM

Probiotics is people being given live beneficial bacteria because the general public is ignorant and scared of bacteria even though most are perfectly harmless and many more are good than bad. The term is a PR campaign. Yes you have all kinds of normal flora in your gut, on your skin, in your mouth and such. There is one bug that is supposed to be in the gut that if it is not there one would be at a much higher risk of developing kidney stones and if it were reintroduced then the risk would go away (a prof at Iowa State discovered this). Just because you have normal flora it does not mean that probiotics would not help, as that study proved they can be very beneficial, it is like taking vitamin supplements!

tpcn008211 03-26-2006 09:02 AM

That is truly amazing, what microbes can do. Yay Microbes!

kskerr 03-28-2006 07:17 PM

Yes they are, we couldn't live without them!

Giardia 07-31-2006 11:20 PM

Without e.coli, we would die! they produce an essential vitamin.

ultra T4 01-11-2009 01:58 AM

its weird e.coli can kill you but it is good for you:confused::confused::confused::confused:

kitty*cat 01-12-2009 07:28 PM

Answer for ultra T4
Eschericia coli comes in pathogenic AND nonpathogenic forms!:confused::D ok, ultra T4?

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