You’ve probably heard the buzz already about the many health benefits of probiotics, a word which literally translates to: pro- “for” + biotics “life” — FOR LIFE. But did you know that these remarkable commensal microorganisms, which outnumber our bodily cells 10 to 1 and contribute over 95% of our body’s total genetic information, also break down highly toxic manmade chemicals which your body is either incapable, or only partially capable, of defending itself from?
Learn about some of the amazing ways in which ‘good bacteria’ help to detoxify chemicals within our body:
This toxicant — linked to over 40 diseases — found in anything from thermal printer receipts, paper money, canned food liners, dental composites, and of course plastics, is a powerful endocrine disrupter now found in everyone’s bodies. Remarkably, two common probiotic strains, Bifidobacterium breve and Lactobacillus casei, have been found (in animal research) to help the body detoxify by reducing the intestinal absorption of bisphenol A through facilitating increased excretion. The animals receiving probiotic treatment were found to have 2.4 times higher excretion of Bisphenol A in their feces, suggesting probiotic supplementation could be of significant benefit to humans as well.
Probiotic strains from the traditional Korean fermented cabbage dish known as kimchi have been identified to degrade a variety of pesticides such as chlorpyrifos, coumaphos, diazinon, methylparathion, and parathion. These nifty organisms actually use these chemicals which are exceedingly hard to break down as sources of carbon and phosphorous – ‘food’! – and were found to break down the pesticide 83.3% after 3 days and degrade it completely by day 9. While this test tube study likely does not reflect exactly what happens in our gut when we ingest both chlorpyrifos and Kimchi, it is provocative, and indicates there is some protective effects in the gut.
Lactobacillus bacteria found in food reduce metal toxicity in humans. According to one study, “This is because they have resistance mechanisms which prevent damage to their cells and they can bind and sequester heavy metals to their cell surfaces, thus removing them through subsequent defecation.” The study differentiates between detoxification and detoxication, the detoxification is described as “the ability to remove drugs, mutagens, and other harmful agents from the body,” and the latter is the mechanism through which ‘good bacteria’ prevent “damaging compounds into the body.” There is a large body of research on probiotics preventing and healing up intestinal permeability, this is another way in which toxic stomach contents are prevented from doing harm to the body as a whole.
Cancerous Food Preservatives
Another Kimchi study found it contained a strain of bacteria capable of breaking down sodium nitrate, a naturally and artificially occurring chemical (used from anything to rocket fuel and gunpowder) linked to a variety of chronic degenerative diseases, including cancer. The study found a depletion of sodium nitrate by up to 90.0% after 5 days. Sodium nitrate becomes toxic when it is converted in food products, and even in our intestines via microbiota, to N-nitrosodimethylamine. A study found that four lactobacillus strains where capable of breaking this toxic byproduct down by up to 50%.
Perchlorate is an ingredient in jet fuel and fireworks that widely contaminates the environment and our food. Sadly, even organic food has been found to have concentrated high levels of this toxicant, making it exceedingly difficult to avoid exposure. It is now found in disturbing concentrations in breast milk and urine, and is a well-known endocrine disrupter capable of blocking the iodine receptor in the thyroid, resulting in hypothyroidism and concomitant neurological dysfunction. A study found that the beneficial bacterial strain known as Bifidobacterium Bifidum is capable of degrading perchlorate, and that breast fed infants appear to have lower levels than infant formula fed babies due to the breast milk bacteria’s ability to degrade perchlorate through the perchlorate reductase pathway.
Heterocyclic aromatic amines (HCA) are compounds formed when meat is cooked at high temperatures of 150-300 degrees C, and are extremely mutagenic (damage the DNA). Lactobacillus strains have been identified that significantly reduce the genotoxicity of theses compounds.
While not normally considered a ‘toxin,’ wheat contains a series of proteins that we do not have the genomic capability to produce enzymes to degrade. When these undigested proteins – and there are over 23,000 that have been identified in the wheat proteome – enter into the blood, they can wreak havoc on our health. Research has found that our body has dozens of strains of bacteria that are capable of breaking down glutinous proteins and therefore reduce its antigenicity and toxicity.
While the role of probiotics in degrading gluten proteins sounds great, a word of caution is in order. Since modern wheat is not a biologically compatible food for our species – having been introduced only recently in biological time, and having been hybridized to contain far more protein that our ancient ancestors were ever exposed to – it would be best to remove it entirely from the diet.
Written by Sayer Ji @ https://wakeup-world.com/2014/08/24/7-ways-probiotics-detoxify-your-body/