Why We Made It: New Probiotics for Immunity & Digestive Stress Support

A lot has changed over the past 8 months A lot is happening in the world, and as a result our lifestyle has undergone significant shifts – shifts that have all too often been accompanied by increased stress and anxiety.

“Constant” stress is felt by more than twice as many Canadians during the pandemic as before, which can all too often lead to digestive distress.

We’re not eating as healthfully as we did before the pandemic.

We’re more sedentary.

And, not surprisingly, many of us are interested in finding ways to support a healthy immune system.

Given this challenge, it is helpful to take a step back and look for some simple but proactive steps we can take to support our health and wellness right now.

With all this in mind, we were inspired to create two new probiotics to support you.

Why probiotics? It all starts at the gut. Our gut microbiome houses up to 80%(!) of our immune system. A healthy, robust microbiome is essential to our health across every stage of life. The human microbiome is host to trillions of microbes, many of which are essential for overall wellbeing. Having a robust and diverse microbial ecosystem is absolutely critical in the coordination of our immune defense. Our microbes communicate tirelessly, both among themselves as well as with immune cells—making sure that our front line defenders are able to effectively identify, target, and neutralize potential threats.

For Immune System Support: advanced gut health probiotic DEFENSE

When we looked at the research, we asked ourselves:

What exactly does it mean to support our immune system?

And most importantly, what would the ultimate immune-support probiotic look like?

First, we wanted to make sure that our immune supportive probiotic was multi-strain. Multi-strain formulas have been clinically proven to be significantly more effective than their single strain counterparts. This is no surprise, as the microbiome is home to thousands of unique species, each behave and communicating in unique ways. We wanted to build a probiotic that mimics this natural diversity, setting the stage for the inter-species synergies to work their magic!

It is no surprise that probiotics which most closely mimic the gut are consistently found to be the most effective, specifically when looking at supporting the immune system! This should come as no surprise, given the intricate relationship between our gut microbes and immune function.

Next up we wanted to make sure this formula was balanced. Balance is a key principle to keep in mind when looking to support your gut! Like any ecosystem, balance is everything, allowing for each unique species to co-exist. From a formulation perspective, this means creating a product that is not top loaded with one or two species. By creating a product that is optimized for both diversity and balance we can take full advantage of a thriving and diverse microbial ecosystem.

And finally, we wanted to create a product that was anchored by clinically researched strains; ones that are specifically proven to promote a highly functioning immune system. By combining these three key factors, we created an immune support product that encapsulates (no pun intended!) the most cutting-edge research surrounding probiotics, the gut microbiome, and our immune system.

We are excited to bring two new immune-support super strains into the Genuine Health lineup… introducing Plantarum HEAL9 and Paracasei 8700:2!

advanced gut health probiotic DEFENSE is the first Genuine Health probiotic to include two of the most exciting immune-support probiotic strains on the market: Lactobacillus Plantarum HEAL9 and Lactobacillus Paracasei 8700:2. These two strains have been researched in multiple clinical trials covering over 1500 participants! In combination (and at the exact dosages included in DEFENSE) these strains were able to significantly reduce the incidence of common colds by up to 54%. Not only that, but if a participant did get sick then they were found to shave an average 2 days off the duration of illness. These were findings that appeared to be unmatched among the literature [1,2]

Coupling this research with the powerful diversity and balance found across the entire advanced gut health probiotic lineup produces a product strongly suited for maximal immune support, day in and day out.

For Digestive Stress Support: advanced gut health probiotic HIGH POTENCY

When our microbiome is out of sorts so is our immune system, often characterized by a lack of microbial diversity and an increase in harmful inflammation. These factors come together to create a chaotic gut ecosystem, in which critical lines of communication between our microbes and key immune cells can become impaired. This can often act as a distraction for our immune system, lowering its ability to handle incoming threats effectively.

Luckily, we are not without solutions! Supporting our gut with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables has demonstrated impressive transformational potential towards increased both gut diversity and overall immune function. And what about probiotics? Largely through their action at the gut, probiotics have also been shown to help reduce key markers of inflammation at the gut, as well as alleviate common symptoms of a distressed gut such as abdominal pain, gas, and bloating!

In addition to DEFENSE, we are excited to introduce our highest CFU count probiotic to date! We wanted to create a probiotic with optimal restorative potential, directly formulated to help support the health of our microbiome during periods of heightened stress and disruption.

advanced gut health probiotic HIGH POTENCY carries all the gut-support benefits of our probiotic lineup, but now at a restorative dosage. By increasing the concentrations of select strains, we were able to create a product that carries a restorative dosage of probiotics that is unmatched in its balance and diversity.

Building off a diverse and balanced base of 15 unique strains, we went on to target four probiotic species that have been specifically shown to support microbiome recovery. These included lactobacillus casei and lactobacillus gasseri, which saw an increase of 400% and 200% respectively when compared to our advanced gut health probiotic 50 billion. Both these species have shown the potential to help restore healthy gut function and reduce gastro-intestinal discomfort [3,4].

Next we boosted the amount of lactobacillus plantarum by 400%. Lactobacillus plantarum has been shown to help reduce symptoms gut discomfort, particularly during treatment with antibiotics [5,6].

Our immune system needs support more than ever, and it is through the microbiome that we have the best chance of doing so. We are excited to introduce two new powerful allies in advanced gut health probiotic DEFENSE & HIGH POTENCY, proving some much-needed stability during a time of change and disruption. Working to build up our immune system is a small but significant step we can take to regain some control over our health and wellbeing.

[1] Berggren et al. (2011) Randomised, double-blind and placebo-controlled study using new probiotic lactobacilli for strengthening the body immune defence against viral infections. Eur J Nutr. 50(3):203-210.​

[2] Busch et al. (2013) Randomized, double.blind and placebo controlled study using a combination of two probiotic lactobacilli to alleviate symptoms and frequency of common cold. Food and Nutrition Sciences 4:13-20.

[3] Takada et al (2016). Probiotic Lactobacillus casei strain Shirota relieves stress-associated symptoms by modulating the gut-brain interaction in human and animal models. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 28(7): 1027-36. ​

[4] Nishida et al (2019). Health benefits of Lactobacillus gasseri CP2305 tablets in young adults exposede to chronic stress: a randomized, double blind placebo controlled trial. Nutrients. 11(8): 1859.

[5] Mujagic et al (2017). The effects of Lactobacillus plantarum on small intestinal barrier function and muscosal gene transcription; a randomized, double blind placebo-controlled study. Scientific reports. 7(40128).

[6] E. Lönnermark, V. Friman, G. Lappas, T. Sandberg, A. Berggren, I. AdlerberthIntake of Lactobacillus plantarum reduces certain gastrointestinal symptoms during treatment with antibiotics