Why The Probiotic Industry Is Set To Explode In 2020

From Microbiologists Developing Treatments To Aquatic Farmers Raising Livestock, The Industry Is About To Boom.

Reason 1 – Probiotics Are Being Used To Fight Obesity

Microbiologists working on grants issued by the National Institutes of Health, have recently undertaken research into this topic. The research, spearheaded by Dr. Sean Davies, indicates that engineering friendly bacteria to produce specific lipids can help target and combat obesity. 

Mice were placed on high fat diets and given these bacteria to test their responsiveness to the treatment. The treatment appeared to inhibit weight gain and even combat other negative side effects associated with such a poor diet. 

These findings, which were published in the popular science journal Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology” could see a great deal more research being invested into the benefits of probiotics. With potential breakthroughs looming on the horizon, it’s possible probiotics could become a household product. 

Reason 2 – Probiotics Are Being Used In Fish Farming

Aquaculture is actually kind of a huge deal. You may not have heard of it, but it is the fastest growing food production sector. This industry however, is plagued by a huge problem: Disease.

Diseases that travel well in water are known as water-borne pathogens. These pathogens pose a huge risk to the animals and vegetation that can be farmed in the sea. Much like regular farmers, aquatic farmers use pesticides, disinfectants and antibiotics fairly commonly. This has resulted in an increase in diseases that are resistant to these methods – meaning the demand for probiotic based solutions is only going to continue to grow.

Momentum has been building surrounding the use of probiotics in aquaculture from the last decade onwards. Interest was initially piqued when farmers realised probiotics could be used to fight off these water-borne diseases.

They are also being used in conventional farming, and have been in a while. Probiotics have historically been used to maintain the gut health of various livestock and also prevent certain diseases.

Reason 3 – Probiotics Are Being Used In Postnatal Care

There currently appears to be a common consensus in the medical community that probiotics are useful in postnatal care for reducing the death rate of premature babies. Research went underway as far back as 2011 to develop a set of guidelines for properly administering and dosing probiotics in neonatal infants.

These aren’t rare, niche probiotic cultures either. They’re using bifidobacteria and lactobacilli, some of the most commonly available strains in store bought probiotics. 

These strains are being used to help prevent a condition known as necrotising enterocolitis, this condition occurs primarily in premature newborns. It’s also referred to as NEC. NEC is where a portion of the bowel dies and begins to necrotize INSIDE the body. This necrotic tissue can cause a build up of bad bacteria which can cause sickness and even death.

Reason 4 – Probiotics Are Being Used To Make Mammals (That’s Us!) Look Younger.

Yup, you read that correctly. A study in 2013 was conducted in which probiotic supplements were given to aged mice under observation. After a period of time, they discovered that the mice who had been administered these probiotics began to exhibit characteristics of younger mice. 

These characteristics included both physical and sexual fitness. The coats of female mice began to shine more, alongside periods of “probiotic induced hyperactivity”. The coats of the males appeared to improve too. It’s important to note that the control group of mice who were not fed any kind of probiotics experienced 0 changes in their physical attributes.

Interestingly enough, the shining of hair coincides with a mouses overall fertility – humans ALSO share this genetic trait with mice. (along with about 97-98% of our working DNA.) 

Different methods of probiotic consumption were tested too, probiotic yoghurts were used at first. Then they moved on to pure Lactobacillus sp supplementation, as the probiotic yoghurt contained vitamin d which could have interfered with test results.

It begs the question – if probiotic supplementation can induce a ‘glow of health’ in mice, imagine what it could do for humans? Especially as new discoveries and improvements are continually made.

Reason 4 – Probiotics Are Being Used As A Natural Cleaning Supply Alternative

As more and more research is published surrounding the benefits of probiotics and the dangers of industrial cleaning supplies, many people may choose to switch to probiotic cleaners.

Unlike enzyme based or chemical based cleaners, probiotic cleaners can seep into microporous and cracks in any material, building up colonies in order to form a sort of natural competition with ‘bad’ and potentially dangerous bacteria. By starving bacteria instead of attacking them with chemical alternatives, you remove their ability to adapt to an environment. Resistant bacterial strains are on the rise, and the push towards developing alternatives is only going to get stronger in the coming years.

Why Should I Care Right Now?

When any product is about to take off, it’s important to hop on early. It means you get to give a specific product a test run before the insane amount of demand causes manufacturers (and sometimes retailers) to hike their prices. Why pay twice the money in a years time just to find a plethora of benefits you’ve been missing out on for a year?

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