Lately, there has been a lot of muse about products containing soil-based probiotics. Soil-based probiotics are known as bacterial microorganisms that are necessary for maintaining a healthy gut microbiome in order to support certain parts of our mental and physical health. If you do not already know, a microbiome is what we call the microorganisms of a particular environment, such as our body or certain parts of our body. Soil-based organisms (SBOs) are a new class of probiotic supplements that help break down plant material, produce vitamins, fight pathogens, and so on. We can consider SBOs “good bacteria” due to their health benefits that include:
- Aiding in digestion. Soil-based organisms are better able to withstand the acidic environment of the stomach and have a hard exterior that allows them to travel more efficiently through the intestinal tract. SBOs help digest food, control the calories you absorb and provide vital enzymes and vitamins.
- Assisting in nutrient absorption through natural minerals produced from the soil and ground.
- Triggering antibodies that act as defenders to support your immune system. This helps by protecting us from bacterial and fungal overgrowth in our intestines. They secrete proteins that activate the immune system and stimulate the production of white blood cells and antibodies.
- Supporting mood and mental health. Based on behaviors of germ-free mice, researchers believe that the brain and personality of an individual may be affected by gut bacteria. They found that the amygdala, which is known as part of the brain responsible for regulating emotions, appeared to be more hyperactive in subjects that were deficient in microbiota. Based on the study, the researchers concluded that behavior is influenced by the presence or absence of microbiota in the body and accompanied by neurochemical changes in the brain.
To get a better understanding of all the craze about SBOs, we have to trace back to our ancestors’ history. Before the development of an agricultural based society, the diet of our ancient ancestors consisted of wild plant foods such as vegetables, roots, fruits and berries that were gathered from bushes, trees, and the ground. The foods collected were eaten as they were picked, in other words, without being washed. Our ancestors were ingesting bacteria that were remaining on these foods that were rich in vitamins, minerals, and proteins from the natural soil, which led to the colonization of bacteria in the gut. This created a coexistence, or symbiotic relationship, between humans and the bacteria from the soil and dirt on the foods that were picked and eaten. This resulted in a stronger immune system and the evolution of the human body to its modern-day form today. No wonder so many people are going crazy for SBOs!