Well, it had to happen eventually. How else was Big Pharma going to weasel their way into the microbiome business?
According to the results of two recent studies, it appears as though only some patients benefit from probiotics, while others get nothing — or worse, adverse side effects — from taking them. And because of these results, researchers say, consumers should exercise caution.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I’ve never seen anyone suffer an adverse outcome from a dose of friendly flora. And if someone is going to propose restrictions on the use of probiotics, of all things, you can bet I’ll have a thing or two to say about it…
So let’s look at some of these researchers’ “conclusions.” And I’ll offer up my own point-by-point commentary below, so you can decide for yourself the more logical option…
Multiple crazy claims, one obvious explanation
Where to start? Let’s start with a few recommendations made by the researchers:
- Probiotics should be regarded by physicians as any other medical treatment.
False! Do these clowns really think we can compare probiotics to potentially harmful statin drugs, chemotherapy drugs, or any other drug for that matter? It’s apples and oranges, to say the very least.
- The burden of proof lies at the hands of those administering probiotics.
Seriously, it’s not as if we’re out here dispensing poison. Isn’t the amazing health of my patients evidence enough?
- The findings support slowing the current rush [of probiotic distribution] to find all sorts of applications for probiotics.
Well of course they do! After all, we have to give Big Pharma a chance to catch up and devise a plan to make a profit!
- [This is] a wake-up call for patients who frequently view probiotics as a healthy pill.
That’s right… Heaven forbid patients continue to foolishly take supplements that make them feel better!
- Physicians — and consumers — who want to explore therapeutic use of probiotics will need to accept the current uncertainties of their use, the highly personalized effects they have on different individuals, and the need to thoroughly comb through the evidence.
Just as they ought to with anything they take, supplement or pharmaceutical. So what, exactly, is the problem here?
Good bacteria aren’t drugs
Look — I don’t need to tell you that research supports the benefit of routine probiotic use, because I’m sharing those findings with you all the time. But I would like to point out the one glaring thing that these two particular studies have in common.
And that’s the fact that, once again, the influence of diet was never even considered. This is the biggest fault in the American medical community as a rule. And it’s hard to take any research like this seriously because of it.
The bottom line is that we don’t know all there is to know about the trillions of probiotic organisms that call our bodies home. And that’s okay, as it’s all new, game-changing science.
But the troublesome aspect to me is that once something is popular, and actually works, Big “Science” launches a campaign to prove it ineffective. For no other apparent reason than to stay in Big Pharma’s financial good graces.
And that’s the scariest part of all the probiotic hype that’s been taking hold over the last decade. Namely, that Big Pharma is going to want to turn these amazing bugs into drugs — effectively taking them out of your hands and into the hands of a physician that knows nothing about them!
And I’ll be the first to admit that the entire medical community, alternative and conventional, has much to learn about probiotics and their effects on individual patients. But the conventional medical community insists on achieving uniform and consistent results before they’ll ever fully get behind the use of probiotics.
And as I’ve said many times, that just isn’t how the human body works. You can make as many false equivalencies as you want. But good bacteria are not drugs — they work by interacting with our own bodies—each with very unique microbiomes—to produce results.
So yes, those results might be different for you and me. And despite these researchers’ claims to the contrary, I haven’t seen a bad one yet.
So do yourself a favor. Disregard this nonsense — and take a high-quality probiotic (like my favorite, Dr. Ohhira’s) every single day.
For more information about how to ensure you get the best probiotic for you, refer to my April 2016 Logical Health Alternatives newsletter (“My three-step plan to ensure you’re taking the highest-quality, most effective probiotic”). Not a subscriber? No problem. Click here to learn more, or sign up today.