Today we’re reviewing Custom Probiotics CP-1 Adult Formula, a multi-strain probiotic containing 50 billion colony forming units.

Custom Probiotics CP-1 Adult Formula BottleWhen I first started looking into getting on a serious probiotic regimen I believed the holy grail of probiotics would be a low CFU(colony forming units) probiotic that you could slowly taper up as you got used to it. CFU is a measurement of the number of colony forming bacteria units inside a probiotic supplement. Supposedly the idea is that the more CFU the higher chances the bacteria will populate the digestive system.

My target at the time was around 1 billion CFU. This is why I reviewed a lot of products like Primadophilus for Children & Align. Part of the reason I was concerned with finding a low CFU probiotic was due to the fact that I often experienced herx reactions(flu like symptoms) & constipation when taking probiotics. My thought was that if I go low & slow, my body will adjust as I taper up. I’ve since learned that any probiotic I take gives me these reactions, so for me, low & slow has failed. I was often not taking probiotics because of the symptoms they produced.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the digestive system has literally zillions of bacteria within it. For someone with a serious bacterial imbalance, a 1 billion CFU probiotic product may cause a negative reaction like herx, but not offer any benefit as the bacteria die off before they can do anything worthwhile. Continue reading “Review: Custom Probiotics CP-1 50 Billion CFU Adult Formula” »

Today we’re taking a look at Now Foods Artichoke Extract Capsules.

Now Foods Artichoke Extract 450mg BottleArtichoke extract is taken from the leaves of the artichoke plant. The leaves contain Cynarine which increases bile production from the liver & gall bladder. Bile is a bitter substance that is used in the lower digestive tract to help digest food, especially fats. Artichoke extract also contains luteolin & apigenin which are flavones. Luteolin looks to have some benefits as far as helping control the immune system & reducing inflammation. Apigenin benefits are sketchy at best, but it is a known inhibitor of the CYP2C9 enzyme which many pharmaceutical drugs rely on to work. So if you rely on one of these drugs, you might need to hold off on using artichoke extract despite the dosage of apigenin being small. Continue reading “Review: NOW Foods Artichoke Extract” »

5 Diet & Nutrition Mistakes

May 1st, 2011 - Written by - Leave a Comment

Learn about five diet & nutrition mistakes made by many

1. “Low Fat” or “Fat Free” foods are probably not good for you.

There are a ton of products on the market that advertise as being “low fat” or “fat free”. There are some products out there that naturally fall into these categories, such as rice cakes or fruit. Those foods are fine, what you want to look out for are things that would normally have fat, but have been engineered to have reduced fat or no fat. Things like cookies, breakfast bars, brownies, etc. These items have probably had a ton of processed & artificial ingredients added to them so as to replace the texture of the missing fat.

Also it’s very important to realize that “Low Fat” or “Fat Free” foods can still make you fat. Fat is more easily stored in the body and will probably hit your thighs quicker than other sources of calories, but protein & carbohydrates contain calories which will convert to fat as well. So if you’re eating something that is “fat free”, but has 300 calories per serving, you’re really not doing yourself many favors. Continue reading “5 Diet & Nutrition Mistakes” »

A recent study by the Boston School of Medicine has found that those who are dealing with Crohn’s Disease are more likely to be deficient in Vitamin D2 partially due to problems with absorbing it. The study found that those with Crohn’s had a absorption rate that was 30% lower than normal & approximately 70% of the patients had Vitamin D deficiencies. Vitamin D is often labeled as ‘the sunshine vitamin’ as it can be produced by the skin when exposed to sunlight or obtained from foods and/or in supplements.

If you’d like to try supplementing Vitamin D2 check out Now Foods’ 2000 IU Vitamin D2. Keep in mind that a lot of the Vitamin D on store or pharmacy shelves is Vitamin D3, not D2, so keep that in mind when buying a supplement.

You can review all the findings by reading the full study.

Bacterial Vaginosis & Yeast Infections affect millions of women each year. In many cases a quick trip to the store or to the doctors office for medication is enough to cure the problem. However, there are many women out there who will only be cured for a short period of time and then their symptoms return & become chronic. Before you know it repeated trips to the doctor or the store do not result in a permanent resolution to the problem & it can be extremely frustrating. I’ll highlight some tips and products that may help you get back on track to having a healthy vagina. Continue reading “Cures & Treaments For Chronic Bacterial Vaginosis, Yeast Infections or Vaginal Itching” »

Top Six Natural Constipation Remedies

April 16th, 2010 - Written by - 1 comment

Top Six Natural Constipation Remedies

Most people will find themselves dealing with constipation one point or another in their lives. Sometimes synthetic laxatives can be harsh and uncomfortable to use. Before reaching for a laxative drug, perhaps you can give these natural remedies a try.

#6 – Exercising

Even if you feel sluggish from  constipation, it’s still a good idea to try to get some movement going. Try to focus on the abdominal area. Getting blood flowing through your system may help wake-up your gut to start moving things again.

#5 – Magnesium

Magnesium is an element that attracts water, this can help soften stool that may be to stiff to allow easy passage. You should look for a magnesium supplement that does NOT have calcium, as calcium will only worsen constipation. Look for a magnesium supplement that has about 250 – 500mg.

#4 – Ginger

Ginger is great for your digestive tract all around. In some cases it can also help with constipation. I’d try a ginger tea or Ginger Chew candies.

#3 – Iberogast

Iberogast(STW-5) is an herbal mixture that helps with digestive movement. I would try taking it on an empty stomach instead of with a meal and see if that will get your lower bowels moving again.

#2 – Juices

Many juices can have a laxative effect & are usually pretty gentle. The most well known is prune juice, but other juices such as grape or orange juice might work for you as well. I myself do not like the taste of prune juice, but will happily drink grape or orange juice. For me these seem to only cause a bowel movement if I am dealing with constipation, otherwise I don’t get the laxative effect(which is a good thing!).

#1 – Raisin Bran

This seems to always work for me, but it is the last on my list as usually it causes quite a bit of gas as well. Raisin Bran cereals taste pretty good & can definitely get your digestive motor going. It’s probably a bit harsher than the other items listed here, but if nothing else has worked, raisin bran probably will. You could also try other things like a bran muffin or an over the counter fiber product.

Other Options?

Do you have a favorite natural constipation remedy? Please post it below.

 

Align Probiotics ReviewAlign Probiotics Review

Buy Align from Amazon.com

Recently Proctor & Gamble’s marketing department got in touch with me to take a look at their flagship probiotic, Align. While I haven’t actually started taking Align yet, I’d like to share some of my first thoughts on the product.

I’ve seen Align advertised before & it has received good reviews on places like Amazon.com. I am a little skeptical on mass marketed products that have slick packaging. In some cases the word probiotic is used to attract people to a product that has little digestive benefit. In one case I got some terrible breakfast bars that supposedly had “probiotics” in them, but they were barely a step above sweetened laminated cardboard. I don’t think this is a goal of Align since they are strictly focusing on a probiotic supplement where the cardboard is only in the packaging, not the actual product. Continue reading “Align Probiotics Review: First Glance” »

While this isn’t directly digestion related, I am here with a terrible pain in my mouth due to the evils of oral sores(may also be called canker sores) & it’s kinda the only thing on my mind right now. Not only do I have one sore, but I actually have two, on top of having two sores, they are both on my tongue! Normally I do not get sores on my tongue, but I guess I am just super lucky this time around. I thought I was getting over the one on the back-bottom of my tongue, only to accidentally bite down on my the front of my tongue, causing another sore to form. So instead of hearing about my woes, let’s get down to some basics and try to think of solutions to these sores, as I am sure if you’ve dealt with them, you already know that they’re a pain in the but… mouth…

Continue reading “Preventing and Treating Oral Sores” »

The Living With Gastroparesis blog just posted some interesting survey data about Gastroparesis which does include information about probiotic usage w/ Gastroparesis. Of 46 people who responded as taking probiotics, 25 reported mild to significant improvements of their Gastroparesis symptoms, which is actually impressive as I was not thinking they would have that large of an effect. It is important to note that the majority of positives results, were on the mild side, but some people did respond well to probiotics. Continue reading “What Is The Best Probiotic Supplement For Gastroparesis?” »

a_wellness_mineral_1207I was recently reading an article from Time magazine about Zinc being used in 3rd world countries to fight childhood diarrhea which is a very serious cause of death in these countries. This got me to thinking that perhaps Zinc could be useful for people dealing with Irritable Bowel Syndrome diarrhea.

Zinc is an essential metal the body needs to function. Not only could Zinc help with irritable bowel syndrome diarrhea, but it could also help other bodily functions & your immune system. I used to take Zinc quite a bit as a child because my mom wanted me to & we were able to get through a winter season without getting sick. Zinc can be hard on your stomach, so it’s important to take a supplement with food or get a multivitamin that includes it in the mix. Probably a good idea to take all your vitamins with food.

P929I’d suggest trying out Nature’s Way Calcium, Magnesium and Zinc complex or Nature’s Way Alive Multivitamin. Note that Calcium can also help with chronic diarrhea as well.

Hopefully these guys will help you out in reducing whatever chronic diarrhea you’re experiencing.

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