Probiotics: The Need for a Comprehensive Approach -- By Dr. Neela Sandal

The scientific method and traditional research on narrow areas of study can bring us great and accurate results, but often, these results aren't the whole picture. An example of this is probiotics, which are wildly popular but not always understood or used in the best ways. At the same time, limited research on probiotics doesn't give us the full picture of all the potential benefits.

Some researchers did sound studies on two probiotics, lactobacillus, and bifidobacteria, finding these probiotics could help patients. Subsequent studies aimed to reproduce the evidence found in the initial study rather than look at the entire world of probiotics. These two probiotics are only a small fraction. Now we have an enormous amount of data on these two probiotics, and studying other probiotics is often challenging when it comes to funding or credibility.

This is why 99.9% of all probiotics on the shelf you can buy are lactobacillus and bifidobacteria—they do have some good benefits. Still, we see a lot of limitations with just these two options. The probiotics best individually suited to each person aren't readily available by virtue of insufficient sound research done on them. For that research to happen, scientists either need to find new funding or do the research for free as a passion project.

As a result of all this, we're asking the wrong question. We've substituted the question of what benefit probiotics have for what benefit lactobacillus and bifidobacteria have. We need far more research on other probiotics, and until we do that research, we're entirely missing probiotics' full potential.

In our treatment at Atma Clinic, we are looking deeply at all the emerging research. When it comes to probiotics, at what treatment best matches a person's health challenges and ecology.