Question of the Week: What is kefir? – Indianapolis alternative medicine

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kefir

According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), probiotics are live microorganisms similar to microorganisms found in the human digestive system. Probiotics, which are believed to prevent disease by altering the microorganisms in the intestinal tract, are also called “friendly bacteria” and “good bacteria”.

benefits of probiotics
Probiotics are good bacteria – image by biothrivesciences.com

In 2005, NCCAM and the American Society for Microbiology co-funded a conference about probiotics. Promising research discussed included:

  • treating diarrhea, especially from rotavirus
  • prevention and treatment of urinary tract infections
Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections – image by lifehealthmax.com
  • prevention and treatment of the vaginal tract
  • treatment for irritable bowel syndrome
  • reduction of bladder cancer recurrence
bladder cancer stages web
Bladder cancer stages – image by cxbladder.com
  • shortening the length of Clostridium difficile intestinal infections
  • prevention and treatment of pouchitis, which can occur after surgery to remove the colon
  • prevention and management of eczema in children
stock photo baby with eczema on face
Eczema in child – image by sunlightpharmacy.com

Researches believe there is a strong placebo effect in kefir, and further research is needed clinical benefits.

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