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Hey everyone. Welcome back to Dr. Ruscio radio. This is Dr. Ruscio with some good news regarding how we’ve made it easier to use probiotics. As you hopefully have heard, I advocate for an approach of using three different types of probiotic together, synergistically. We’ve retermed this of late as probiotic triple therapy, meaning let’s use the three different categorical types of probiotics together. This is akin to putting three legs of support underneath the stool like you would sit on. That seems to be more conducive to balance and healing in the microbiota and in the gut. And I’ll come back to the scientific rationale for that in a moment. But I wanted to not bury the lead here and make you aware of the fact that we’ve been working hard to make use of probiotics easier. We have released a new formula that has all three in one, and it does not require refrigeration.
Up until now, we’ve had our lactobifido blend, our Saccharomyces boulardii and our soil based. Three different bottles for three different probiotics. We’ve now put all three into one, reformulated and repacked, so that refrigeration is not required. Maybe the best part we’ve put a serving size in a stick. Like the LMNT electrolytes, or like a Crystal Light stick that you would just tear and then pour into water, mix and drink. That’s what we’ve done with our probiotics. I’m very excited about this. This is kind of hearkens back to a story. One of my good friends, his wife had fairly pronounced gut issues kind of bounced around. Never really had good resolution. One day he said, yeah, I know you do all this gut stuff. What can my wife do?
Why a Stick?
We recommend that she go low FODMAP and there was big movement of the needle with that, but there was still some lingering stuff and she complained of not having a good ability to reintroduce FODMAPs. So we put her on all three probiotics. And as we see in the clinic all the time, and as I share in Healthy Gut, Healthy You, pretty much complete resolution of her symptoms, which is great. I ended up being over their house a few months later and I said, Hey, you know, how are things going with the probiotics? And she said, oh my God, they were so helpful. And I said, oh, so you’re still using them. She said, well, it just got so hard taking three different bottles every morning. One was in the fridge and two were on the counter. I just felt like I was popping so many pills. That was a real eye-opener for me, it showed me that we could make this easier. Now we have. So again, all three in one formula, tear open a stick, pour into some water, mix and drink. Very easy.
Why Three Probiotics at Once?
Now, what is the rationale behind the three? Well, it’s a two-fold rationale. The first is it’s better, at the start, especially if you have a history of being reactive with the three different probiotics broken out. So that if you do have a reaction to one, you can personalize a protocol and use the two of the three that you tolerate. However, over time people should, as their gut heals and their immune system becomes less sensitive, be able to tolerate all three. In fact, I had a little bit of intolerance to one and with some time I now realize benefit from all three.
Again, to use this kind of musculoskeletal parallel that I often use. If you had injured your knee or your ankle, you might not be able to do all the movements that you’d like to. With time you could then tolerate a broader amount of movements that would lead to your knee being stronger and multiple planes of movement. So in the acute, early rehab phases, you have to be a little bit more discerning with how you move, but eventually you want to get to multiple planes of movement to have the strongest and most stable knee. This same seems to apply for probiotics. As one heals, they should be able to tolerate a broader amount of probiotics and realize the benefits that we know are a by-product of the fact that probiotics can battle and help correct small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
They have been documented to be antifungal, antiparasitic. They help with motility. They reduce leaky gut. They attenuate imbalances in the immune system, perhaps through stimulating toll like receptors or pattern recognition receptors. There are a multitude of benefits that one achieves from probiotics. And eventually, if not, initially, we want to get people on all three.
Research Supports This
Now coming back to the research justification for this position, there have been a few papers that have concluded that multi-species formulas are better than a single or a double species formula. A 2020 meta- analysis, which was published in the Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found this and another paper a 2017 meta-analysis in the Journal of Current Medical Research and Opinion echoed a similar finding. When looking at different probiotic formulas, there’s this trend. Again, remember these are meta-analyses. So these are summaries of most or all of the available randomized control trials. So this is the pinnacle level of scientific evidence and support. They’re finding that when looking at a single or a double species formula multi-species formulas work better. Now, the multi-species formulas may vary anywhere from eight to 15 or so species on average. But that is the trend. And so what I was doing in the clinic was looking at this trend and working with my patients. Over the years, I would find one probiotic was helpful and I’d say myself, okay, this individual is moving in the right direction, but they’re still not where we’d like them to be. Do we now graduate to a full blown course of herbal antimicrobials or antibiotics like Rifaximin, or might we be able to get more yardage out of probiotics?
Hi everyone. This is Dr. Ruscio. In case you need help, I wanted to quickly make you aware of what resources are available to you. If you go to drruscio.com/resources you will see a few links you can click through for more. There is the clinic which I’m immensely proud of, the fact that we deliver cost-effective, simple but highly efficacious functional medicine. There’s also my book, Healthy Gut Healthy You, which has been proven to allow those who have been unable to improve their health, even after seeing numerous doctors, to be able to help them finally feel better. There’s our store where there’s a number of products like our Elemental Heal line, our probiotic line and other gut supportive and health supportive supplements. We now offer health coaching, so if you’ve read the book or listen to a podcast like this one or are reading about a product and you need some help with how or when to use or how to integrate with diet, we now offer health coaching to help you along your way. Finally, if you’re a clinician, there is our clinicians newsletter. The Future of Functional Medicine Review. I’m very proud to say that we’ve now had doctors who’ve read that newsletter, found challenging cases in their practices, applied what we taught in the newsletter, and have been able to help these patients who were otherwise considered challenging cases. Everything for these resources can be accessed through drruscio.com/resources. Alrighty. Back to the show.
Looking at this in juxtaposition to some of the early research findings, this was probably about 2015 – 2016 that I was starting to tinker with this. So it may have been before some of the meta-analyses fully made this apparent, but logic would suggest if one probiotic helps, let’s see what happens if we add in another. People did a little bit better with the second and even better with the third and that was a repeat observation. So I fell into this habit of using the three different categorical types. And this is where the analogy comes from looking at a stool with one leg of support, which can balance, but is wobbly versus three legs of support, which is much more conducive to balance.
Case Study with Phyllis
This is very nicely exemplified in a case study that we published with Phyllis who had been on a low FODMAP diet, I believe for 1 1/2 years and seen some response, but nothing overly noteworthy. She also had been on various probiotic formulas again with no real substantial improvement. The only change we made when she came in, and this is now a routine aspect of our clinical model is we had her go through probiotic triple therapy, meaning using all three of these probiotics together, synergistically. And what do you know? She saw a near complete resolution of all our complaints that she had not seen after a long-term on low FODMAP dieting and after kind of haphazard application of probiotics in the past. The difference here is the comprehensive kind of tri- legged support for her gut. And this does seem to be the difference between, in some cases, failure or quasi benefit from a probiotic or fairly marked resolution of ones symptoms. Up until now, this has required one bottle in the refrigerator and then two in the cabinet or in the countertop.
Convenience of the Stick
It isn’t always the most convenient thing. I mean, for me, it was a small price to pay for no longer having food reactive brain fog, loose bowels, bloating, better energy. For me it’s well worth it. However, again, realizing that maybe not everyone is as motivated as I or some may be, I thought let’s try to make this as easy as we can. So again, we’ve put all three into one formula. We’ve changed some of the packaging and methodology in the probiotic formulation so as to use the same exact bacteria, but protect it from the elements or heat, which thankfully have allowed this to be shelf stable. So now you can keep these on the countertop in the cabinet, wherever, wake up in the morning, tear open a stick, pour it in a glass of water. And if you want to do a second dose in the evening, that would kind of be your dose range. Anywhere from once per day to twice per day will get you in proximation of the ranges that have been used in the clinical research studies. So that is the update. I hope you will give these a try and anything we can do to help make your health journey easier. That’s a big win for me. So please give the all-in-one probiotic a try and let me know what you think. All right, guys, we will talk to you next time.
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