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“THE CONSUMER’S GUIDE TO PROBIOTICS -How Nature’s Friendly Bacteria Can Restore Your Body to Super Health” By S.K. DASH, Ph.D. Freedom Press 2005, 144p. Available at ACRES, USA BOOKS Reviewed by William G. Winter, DVM This new book has been called “the most authoritative and easy-to-understand book on probiotics today” by Harry Preuss, MD , author of the book’s forward, and physiology-pathology professor at Georgetown University School of Medicine. Earl Mindell, PhD and author of “The Vitamin Bible for the 21st Century”endorses this book and calls Dr Dash “an internationally known probiotic pioneer”. Dr. S.K. Dash, former head of the South Dakota FDA, is a veterinarian, nutritionist and microbiologist. He has a PhD in nutrition from South Dakota State University and is also the founder and president of the Minnesota-located UnitedAgri Services Laboratories (UAS Labs), the maker and marketer of the DDS-1 strain of Lactobacillus acidophilus. Like Gerald Fry knows his bulls, and Chuck Walters knows his buggy politicians, Dr. Dash knows his bugs. He is well-known to most attendees of the Acres USA annual meetings and is both a friendly face and a professional addition to every trade show. He is an avid supporter of both Acres and eco-agriculture and one of the guiding forces for the return of good natural health from the ground up. He has now written the definitive book regarding the effective microorganisms of digestion. To understand PROBIOTICS (good bugs for the intestine of man and animal) one must go back in time to envision how magical the new ANTIBIOTICS (bug killers) seemed to the world when they arrived. Antibiotics became commercially available right around WW II and promised to be the answer to many a medical prayer. One of the biggest challenges that faced the livestock-based food industry back in that time was the maintenance of the health of large numbers of confined livestock. Initially, antibiotics were perceived to be the rescue plan for the disease outbreaks and endemic problems of food animal production. This rescue seemed to be too good to be true, which, of course, was the case. So it wasn't long until new problems began to rear their ugly heads. First
researchers, then consumers, became alarmed about antibiotic residues in meat, milk and eggs from treated animals. This problem has now reached scandalous proportions, over 35 million pounds of antibiotics are produced in the US annually with the vast majority of them given to food animals. All too much of this antibiotic residue either ends up in our food supply or our streams, rivers and oceans. In addition to antibiotic residues, an even larger problem has emerged, the creation of antibiotic-resistant “super bugs”. When antibiotics are overused there is not only an inadvertent selective breeding of pathogens, but we now know that bugs can talk to each other, passing on resistance information via genetic implants. Additionally, some antibiotics have been reported to be carcinogenic even at nanodosages. Another unexpected result of the mass dumping of antibiotics into livestock was the degradation of optimal animal care that antibiotic coverage initially made possible. It was not long until over-crowding, poor sanitation, bad air and waste build-up were common in the industry. Today, for many reasons, intestinal dysbiosis (loss of good bugs) has become widespread in livestock and people alike. As far back as the 1920’s and 1930’s some ag researchers were exploring the use of Lactobacillus acidophilus to cure “scours” in pigs and calves and pioneering work in this field had led to a Nobel Prize for a Dr.Mechnikov back in 1908. It actually worked and worked well. Unfortunately, when these products were converted into large scale commercial application they were appallingly lacking in such issues as quality control, organism viability and delivery system, this in spite of the existence of a USDA licensed product. Following some strong interest and limited farm usage, these poorly-made early products failed to achieve the desired results and the public interest waned. Simultaneously, hundreds of millions of dollars were being pumped into the research, development, marketing and promotion of the glamorous, miraculous and cheap-to-produce antibiotics so it’s not hard to see how a David and Goliath story developed leaving the shaggy and, by comparison, pedestrian world of probiotics far, far behind. This story could have ended here if not for scientists such as Dr. Dash. Given the problems with the abusive over-use of antibiotics as stated, it was the natural health community that was best positioned to bring little David back to fight the giant. Starting in the '70s, modern research technique, funded by universities and government, brought forth renewed hope for curing or preventing these new plagues of livestock and man, so before long, new and improved commercial probiotics were created. Among the leaders of this health renaissance was Dr. S.K. Dash, the author of this book.
The reader will find in Part 1 of “The Consumer’s Guide to Probiotics” a clear explanation of “The Ecology of Your Gut”. Not only does one’s life depend on the intestinal flora (bugs), there are more bug cells in us (when we are healthy ) than there are human cells in our whole body! In ancient times the human diet was rich in new digestive organisms from fermented foods like kefir, yogurt, sauerkraut, wine and beer as well as from the consumption of a raw, earthy natural diet. The food microorganism intake of moderns has diminished a million-fold. We also kill our friendly bugs by such intrusions as chlorinated water, pasteurization, antibacterial soaps, antibiotics or cortisone, hormone pills such as birth control or hormone replacement therapy, pollution, stress, and mainly by eating a highly processed, mineral-deficient and sugary diet. Additionally, all these factors enhance pathogens such as Candida albicans. In Part 2 the reader will find a very interesting take on many of the common diseases or new “plagues” of modernity. Since the good bugs are “sticky bugs” it means that they are designed to coat our digestive tract, adhering basically “shoulder-to-shoulder” thus making it difficult for pathogenic bugs to thrive and compete, virtually impossible for them to penetrate our intestinal wall, and making it far less likely that allergenic or inflammatory undigested food particles will be able to enter the intestinal wall and bloodstream. E. Coli and other pathogens create inflammation and disease by blowing literal holes in the lining of the intestine. If you or someone you love suffers from IBD, IBS, ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, peptic ulcer, indigestion, leaky gut syndrome, constipation, lactose intolerance, gluten intolerance, food allergies or other digestive upset, please pay attention. In general, one will find, at the bottom of all this, a serious break in the army of good bacteria that we normally utilize to make health and immunity. These diseases and their related inflamed states are, at the core, reflective of a deficiency in probiotics. Many other medical problems may be related to a decline in the population of good bugs as well, including vaginitis, urinary tract infections, elevated cholesterol and/or blood lipids, autism, toxic shock, chronic fatigue syndrome, acne, infections and allergies. In addition to using probiotics to treat these existing conditions the book explains how a prevention plan can be created for such problems as Candida overgrowth (70% of the women and 40% of the men in the US have yeast infections), cancer, toxicity from smoking, vascular disease, traveler’s diarrhea, food poisoning, chronic fatigue syndrome, autism and other emotional disorders. Has this story perked up your ears yet? It should be very obvious why this new book is so important to all readers. Of course even though good probiotics are completely safe, one should always consult with their doctor before going off drugs or
changing their health plans. This is a complete source book. Not all probiotics are created equal. In fact, it’s possible that many products on the shelf work in a very limited fashion or not at all. The appendixes, glossaries and guides in the last portion of this book explains the four major criteria, the right strains, the right potency, good viability, and right formulation, that are used to determine quality and effectiveness. This fascinating and easy-to-read book can make any reader an educated consumer, one who is wise in the lore of the friendly bugs. Be nice to your symbiotic friends and they will be nice to you.
“A CONSUMER’S GUIDE TO PROBIOTICSHow Nature’s Friendly Bacteria Can Restore Your Body to Super Health” Is available at your bookstores, NutriBooks, Amazon.com or: UAS Laboratories, Inc. Phone: 1-800-422-3371 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org