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As per available reports about 18 Relevant journals, 25 Conferences, 25 Workshops are presently dedicated exclusively to Prebiotics and Probiotics and about 2,070 articles are being published on Prebiotics and Probiotics.
Prebiotics is a general term to refer to chemicals that induce the growth or activity of microorganisms (e.g., bacteria and fungi) that contribute to the well-being of their host. The most common example is in the gastrointestinal tract, where prebiotics can alter the composition of organisms in the gut microbiome. As a functional food component, prebiotics, like probiotics, are conceptually intermediate between foods and drugs
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Scope and Importance
The rapidly expanding research support and product availability for probiotics and prebiotics is evidence for their growing popularity. Probiotics and prebiotics are available commercially in many forms, including foods, dietary supplements, and clinical therapeutics with oral or non-oral delivery. To be effective, probiotics must be capable of being prepared in a viable manner and on large scale (e.g. for industrial purposes), whilst during use and under storage the probiotic should remain viable and stable. For most applications they should be able to survive in the intestinal ecosystem and the host animal should gain beneficially from harbouring the probiotic. Clearly, the organisms used should be generally regarded as safe. Prebiotics must provide selective stimulation of the growth or activity of beneficial native bacteria. Since prebiotics are non-viable, stability is not a concern, but safe consumption levels must be established.
These are indigestible parts of carbohydrates that come from our diets. They provide an environment where probiotics, as healthy bacteria, can thrive within our gastrointestinal system. Probiotics are living microorganisms, also called “good bacteria”. Each person has hundreds of billions of bacteria present in their intestine at all times, including different strains of bacteria, which is called microbiota. The two types of prebiotics that are found in food sources are called fructo-oligosaccarides and galacto-oligosaccarides. Fructo-oligosaccarides is found in vegetables, some fruits and whole grains, such as beans, legumes, bananas, onions and artichokes. Galacto-oligosaccarides is naturally found in fermented dairy products, like yogurt or a popular Eastern European milk drink called kefir. It can also be added to other dairy foods and bread. One of the added benefits of these dairy products is that also they tend to last longer. Regular consumption of prebiotic and probiotic foods not only assists with digestion, but it can also help eliminate pathogen bacteria that make us sick. Bacterial pathogens can be the cause of conditions like diarrhoea and stomach ulcers. Most importantly, prebiotics and probiotics work symbiotically in the intestinal tract. Having good intestinal health ensures that we are absorbing the nutrients we need and boosting our immune systems to resist infection. Over the years, researchers have pinpointed specific bacterial strains that can ease irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and help prevent and treat vaginal yeast infections. And preliminary research indicates that other strains may help improve vascular health, battle depression, and even ward off cancer.
When ingested in adequate amounts, probiotics confer a health benefit to their host, and favourably alter the body’s bacterial composition to improve intestinal function, decrease inflammation, enhance nutrient absorption and encourage overall wellness. Many consumers (more than 80%) are aware of probiotics and their depth of knowledge has been increasing related to more media coverage,” said Connie Falkenstein, brand manager for UAS Life Sciences, Wausau, WI. The probiotic supplement market continues to grow in the U.S. and abroad, according to Transparency Market Research, which reported the global probiotics market was worth $27.9 billion in 2011 and is expected to reach $44.9 billion in 2018, growing at a CAGR of 6.8% from 2013 to 2018. The probiotic market is growing immensely, with no indication that it will be slowing down anytime soon; by 2015 the market is expected to reach $31.1 billion globally, with about 90% of that from the sale of functional foods and beverages.
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