Canadian Health magazine has just published a feature on CulturedCare Probiotic Gum with BLIS K12 – “Chew Your Way To Fewer Infections” – in their summer issue. (Canadian Health magazine is published by the Canadian Medical Association and is placed in doctor and dentist offices across Canada.)
Posts Tagged ‘probiotic gum’
Probiotic gum was the topic of discussion in a recent television feature with professor John Tagg on Australia’s 9 Network TV. The interview focussed on the use of oral probiotic BLIS K12 for protection from the common cold and other infections. Watch the video here:
Oral probiotics are an exciting new category of probiotics for the mouth.
Oral probiotics have their own unique benefits and story.
We created this PowerPoint slideshow to help educate people about the differences between “gut” probiotics (which live in the intestinal tract) and “oral” probiotics (which live in the mouth.)
Health conscious consumers and retailers normally associate “probiotics” with digestive health. Oral probiotics are different. They offer protection from strep throat, bad breath, ear infections and related mouth, nose,throat and upper respiratory infections.
“Why would you want to kill your relatives?”
There is a constant battle in your mouth between healthy and pathogenic bacteria. Professor John Tagg talks about how BLIS K12 molecules help protect us from their dangerous relatives like Streptococcus pyogenes.
Probiotic gum puts friendly organisms in the mouth to defeat bad breath and infections
You won’t find it on the shelves next to Juicy Fruit, but a new Canadian-made chewing gum is being touted for its health benefits, based in part on years of research by microbiologists at the University of B.C.
For those with an aversion to swallowing supplements or eating yogurt containing health-promoting bacterial cultures, Probiotic Gum may be a better vehicle for putting enough friendly bacteria in the mouth to do battle against the bad types that can lead to bad breath and infections.
The mouth contains billions of good and bad bacteria, and the good ones can be used as probiotics because they are living micro-organisms that raise immunity to infection from harmful germs, including the kinds that cause strep throat, earaches, respiratory infections, sinus infections and halitosis (bad breath caused by unfriendly bacteria).
The new gum contains a therapeutic dose (500 million active bacteria) of Streptococcus salivarius in a patented delivery mode. Dr. John Tagg, a microbiologist from the University of Otago in New Zealand, said his childhood experiences with strep throat leading to rheumatic fever led him on a 30-year mission to develop a probiotic product that would prevent strep throat and other infections.
“Infection protection starts in the mouth,” Tagg said. “There are many strains of probiotics for the intestinal tract, but they do not give protection where it is needed most: in the mouth.”
The gum is marketed and distributed by a Coquitlam company called Cultured Care (part of Prairie Naturals). It can be bought in health and nutrition stores and pharmacies, and is being sold for $6 to $8 for an eight-piece package.
Dr. Bob Hancock, Canada research chair and professor in the department of microbiology and immunology at UBC, said he has no proprietary interest in the gum, but Tagg used some of UBC’s research in the development process.
“There are loads of different organisms in the mouth, but this bug type (Streptococcus salivarius) produces antibacterial substances that can kill certain bad bacteria,” Hancock said in an interview, noting that good and bad organisms compete for food in the mouth from things such as leftover particles of food.
“Our body has the ability to discriminate against pathogens and the normal flora,” Hancock said. “Streptococcus salivarius is part of our normal bacteria that occupy the oral cavity.”
Hancock is interested in therapies that increase the efficiency of the innate immune system, sometimes called the inflammatory response. The response is good if it is short-term enough to naturally repair the problem, but bad if it leads to chronic inflammation and disease.
Hancock’s lab at UBC is trying to find agents to fight infectious diseases, which are said to cause a third of all the deaths in the world.
Although antibiotics are a first line of attack, they are not always effective, especially because of growing antibiotic resistance. So harnessing the body’s own immune system holds great appeal.
For the gum, Tagg used Hancock’s research in human cell cultures, which showed that probiotics can destroy harmful bacteria while dampening the potentially damaging inflammatory response that occurs when the immune system is activated to fend off an attack.
While Hancock is fairly sure the gum will be useful against the bacteria causing bad breath, he said he can’t predict its effectiveness against preventing infections. He hasn’t yet chewed the gum, but he does occasionally take probiotic supplements for gastrointestinal imbalances.
“I don’t really like yogurt and there aren’t necessarily enough of the right probiotics in yogurt to make a difference anyway. The thing about the gum is that it seems like a good way to introduce the healthy organisms to the oral cavity,” Hancock said.
Dr. Karen Madsen, a probiotics expert at the University of Alberta, said she looked at the research done by Tagg on the effects of Streptococcus salivarius. There is strong evidence that it does release a substance that can kill other pathogenic bacterial strains that can cause throat infections, ear aches and bad breath under laboratory-based conditions, she said.
“The idea of replacing pathogenic strains of Streptococcus in the mouth with non-pathogenic strains is a valid concept, and several different labs are carrying out research in this area to try to determine the most effective formulations and treatment times,” she said.
But she and Tagg are at odds over whether there is definitive proof of the claims for the effectiveness of the gum product.
“There is no evidence for the statement that [the gum] helps protect against strep throat infections by providing the friendly probiotic bacteria that fight strep infections,” Madsen said.
Tagg said in an e-mail interview that the science behind the gum research dates back more than 20 years. “The data for this assumption is irrefutable and the body of evidence is substantial,” he said, adding that in both lab and clinical trials in more than 100 humans, the probiotic organisms go to work as soon as gum-chewing begins.
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Our Twitter friend ToothFairyCyber recently asked a very good question –
“Is it good idea to chew Probiotic gum while taking Antibiotics?”
We asked the expert, Professor John Tagg and got this answer –
“The best time to chew the probiotic gum is just as you are completing a course of antibiotics and then for the next couple of days immediately following the taking of antibiotics. At that time the probiotic will have more space available for it to attach in the mouth and start growing there.”
There you have it friends!
The mother’s kiss that protects…
Group B Streptococcus and other infections can pose life-threatening hazards to newborn babies. Researchers have discovered that newborn babies receive and colonize protective, beneficial probiotic bacteria from the saliva of their mother! Professor John Tagg and his team of researchers at New Zealand’s University of Otago have been giving pregnant women BLIS K12 oral probiotic in the last few weeks of pregnancy. They’ve found that, once colonized in the mother, this beneficial probiotic bacteria is passed on to the baby and offers protection against Group B Strep and other infections.
Order Online: US, New Zealand, Australia, etc
If you live outside of Canada, you can mailorder CulturedCare Probiotic Gum from some of our online retail partners: (Click on the store name for a link.)
Are you a retailer that should be on this list? Leave a comment with a link to our product listing and we’ll add you here!
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We’re getting a lot of excitement and questions from the natural health communities as we near launch date with our new CulturedCare Probiotic Gum with BLIS K12. People recognize that this product represents an exciting new chapter in Probiotics… and an absolute FIRST for health-minded Canadian consumers.
One of the questions that we appreciate is “Where can I learn more about the research and science behind probiotic BLIS K12?”
Professor John Tagg has been studying this unique probiotic for over 30 years. If you’re interested in learning about his research and you want to review published scientific articles by him and his colleagues, a great place to start is here:
The above link will take you to an article “overview” by Professor Tagg that is accessible enough for most people, with enough technical meat to satisfy scientific types. At the end of the article is a useful list of over 40 relevant scientific articles by Professor Tagg and his colleagues. Most of the article titles are followed by a link to PubMed, an online database of published scientific articles.
You can also find links to selected articles in our own reference section here:
At CulturedCare we work collaboratively with Professor John Tagg and the BLIS K12 team. If you have a request for a specific published article, please let us know and we will do our best to get it for you.
Come see us at the Victoria Health Show January 16 and 17, 2010!
You can find us at The Vitamin Shop booth where we’ll be giving away samples of our new CulturedCare Probiotic Gum with BLIS K12 (while they last!). CulturedCare Director of Education - Holistic Pharmacist RoseMarie Pierce - will be a featured speaker at the show. She’ll be talking about Professor John Tagg’s breakthrough research on probiotic BLIS K12, and it’s demonstrated effectiveness at protecting against infections like strep throat.
Read the full write-up at http://www.canwestshows.com/health/victoria/seminars.html
You can even get free tickets when you buy any Prairie Naturals product at The Vitamin Shop… while they last.
Hope to see you there!