By now, most people know that probiotic supplements give your gut a boost of good bacteria and provide many health benefits. But experts have identified an exciting new ingredient that can take gut health to the next level — bacteriophages. Pioneering companies like Global Healing are using the cutting-edge science of these unique organisms to supercharge their probiotic formulas. They are tiny organisms that make your probiotic stronger and more effective.
One of the most exciting uses for bacteriophages has to do with gut health.[1, 2] They boost the good microbes in your gut microbiome (also known as gut flora) and deter the harmful ones. This allows for better gut balance. When you have a healthy gut, it influences many other aspects of your health, from your mind to your skin to your immune system.
But what exactly is a bacteriophage? And what can a probiotic formula enhanced with bacteriophages do for your gut and overall health? Read on to learn more.
What Is a Bacteriophage?
A bacteriophage is a type of virus, and they are everywhere. In fact, they’re the most abundant organism in the biosphere! They’re on your skin, on surfaces, and in your body. Also called lytic phages, these tiny organisms attach themselves to bacterial cell surfaces and break down their structure. This stops the bacteria in their tracks.
Bacteriophages have an amazing ability to hone in on a specific bacterial species, or even an individual bacterial strain. The bacteriophages used in probiotic formulas — designed to help your gut — target harmful organisms. They’re like the gatekeepers that keep the bad characters out. They won’t affect any other cells in the human body and have an excellent safety record. Their use boosts the productivity of your beneficial gut microbes!
In supplement formulas, bacteriophages are considered a prebiotic. Prebiotics are substances that feed and nurture the good bacteria in your gut. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) defines prebiotics as a "non-digestible food ingredient that beneficially affects the host by selectively stimulating the growth and/or activity of one or a limited number of bacteria in the colon, and thus improves host health."
And thus adding bacteriophages to your probiotic formula as a prebiotic helps the good microbes in your supplement thrive — which affects your skin, mind, mental wellness, digestion, immunity, and more!
Experts sometimes use something called bacteriophage or phage therapy for novel health situations. It was first explored as a treatment for bacterial infections many years ago — before the discovery of antibiotics.
As antibiotics became the go-to solution, phage therapy (and probiotics, for that matter) got pushed back in the public consciousness. Probiotics have been respected as a health solution for a few decades, and bacteriophages and phage therapy is now a re-emerging trend.
Health practitioners use phage therapy for everything from promoting healthy skin to reducing illness-causing organisms in the intestines. Bacteriophages help maintain balance in a part of the gut called the intestinal mucosa, home to many beneficial gut microbes. Phage therapy even provides a natural remedy for antibiotic resistance because certain bacteriophages can target even drug-resistant bacteria.[5, 6]
Because you can now get bacteriophages in probiotic supplements, their health benefits are accessible to just about anyone. They can help supercharge your probiotic, making it more effective! This benefits your gut health, skin, mental wellness, immunity, and more — all with a very high level of safety.
Global Healing has been paying attention to the compelling science surrounding bacteriophages. That’s why our advanced probiotic formula, Global Healing's Ultimate Probiotic, contains 25 unique probiotic strains plus PreforPro® prebiotic blend, which includes bacteriophages.
3 Ways Bacteriophages Help Your Gut Flora
When it comes to your gastrointestinal system, balance is everything. An unbalanced gut can lead to digestive distress, lowered immunity, and more. Below are several ways taking bacteriophages in your probiotic formula can help!
1. Improves Your Gut Flora Biodiversity
Biodiversity is essential to nature’s resilience, and it’s also key to a balanced and resilient gut. Your gut requires a wide variety of flora (bacteria and other microbes) to be at its best. A lack of gut diversity is associated with health concerns like poor digestion and weakened immunity. There is even a link between low gut diversity and obesity.
Bacteriophages may increase your overall gut diversity. They remove certain harmful bacteria from the gut, and that makes space for good microflora species to thrive.
2. Discourages Unwanted Gut Bacteria
Bacteriophages get rid of bad gut bacteria by shortening their life cycle. Once your balance gets thrown off, health consequences soon follow.
If the gut becomes unbalanced, bad bacteria can take over, leading to issues like small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). So by discouraging bad gut bacteria, good ones can thrive!
3. Boosts Your Beneficial Gut Bacteria
The bacteriophages used in probiotics only target unwanted gut microbes. This means that beneficial bacteria are left alone. They’re able to grow and multiply. Having a robust microbiome with healthy probiotic bacteria leads to a balanced gut, which promotes overall good health.
Bacteriophages have even helped children with gut imbalance caused by antibiotics, supporting better balance and wellness.
Best Ways to Take Bacteriophages
The only way you will find bacteriophages commercially is in supplements. Although phage therapy has been around for a long time, the idea of adding bacteriophages to a supplement is relatively new. Yet it’s undeniable: probiotic supplements that include bacteriophage prebiotics promote a balanced gut.
Bacteriophage Prebiotics & Probiotics
A few pioneering supplement companies now add bacteriophages to their probiotic supplements, including Global Healing, so every man, woman, and child can benefit from them.
The PreforPro prebiotic blend prepares the gut for good health by selectively targeting unwanted microbes without disrupting the gut’s natural balance. They may work faster and in smaller amounts than some other prebiotics. They are very gentle and helpful to your overall gut flora.
The benefits extend beyond the gut. Bacteriophages have been shown to support balanced cholesterol, a healthy immune response, and promote normal levels of substances associated with allergies. A balanced gut really does impact the whole body!
Points to Remember
Health experts have used bacteriophages to promote wellness for many years, but their use for everyone, via probiotics, is a more recent development. Adding bacteriophages to probiotic supplements is a truly exciting development. They enhance the effectiveness of these formulas by targeting harmful organisms without damaging good gut bacteria. And as we know, beneficial bacteria are crucial for good gut health and overall wellness.
Bacteriophages provide a few benefits for gut health, including increasing gut flora diversity, boosting beneficial bacteria, and deterring harmful organisms. They also support immune system health, normal cholesterol levels, and overall wellness.
Now enhanced with PreforPro, Global Healing's Global Healing's Ultimate Probiotic is changing the probiotic game. We reformulated the formula to include this cutting-edge prebiotic blend with bacteriophages. It prepares and nourishes the gut so beneficial bacteria can grow and thrive! Try this advanced supplement to optimize your gut health and boost overall wellness!
- Sulakvelidze A. Bacteriophage-based probiotic preparations for maintaining healthy gut microflora. J Prob Health. 2014;2:2
- Kasman LM, Porter LD. Bacteriophages. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020.
- Clokie MRJ, et al. Phages in nature. Bacteriophage. 2011 Jan-Feb; 1(1): 31-45.
- Sulakvelidze A, et al. Bacteriophage therapy. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2001;45(3):649-659.
- Lin DM, et al. Phage therapy: An alternative to antibiotics in the age of multi-drug resistance. World J Gastrointest Pharmacol Ther. 2017;8(3):162-173.
- Febvre HP, et al. PHAGE Study: Effects of supplemental bacteriophage intake on inflammation and gut microbiota in healthy adults. Nutrients. 2019;11(3):666.
- Loc-Carrillo C, Abedon ST. Pros and cons of phage therapy. Bacteriophage. 2011 Mar-Apr;1(2):111-114.
- Davis CD. The gut microbiome and its role in obesity. Nutr Today. 2016;51(4):167-174.
- Olszak T, et al. Phage life cycles behind bacterial biodiversity. Curr Med Chem. 2017;24(36):3987-4001.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.