Bifidobacterium longum, also commonly referred
to a B. longum, is a non-pathogenic probiotic
that is found naturally in the gastrointestinal
tract (GIT) and the vagina. As a probiotic, B.
longum may provide health benefits to
individuals as B. longum works to prevent
disease. Probiotics and B. longum by extension
are “dietary supplements or foods that contain
beneficial, or 'good,' bacteria that are similar
to those normally found in your body. Although
you don't need probiotics to be healthy, these
microorganisms may provide some of the same
health benefits that the bacteria already
existing in your body do — such as assisting
with digestion and helping protect against
Bifidobacterium Longum has been described as one
of the most significant and important types of
“good” bacteria that inhabits the human body.
Bifidobacterium longum or B. longum is “very
helpful because it maintains a normal digestive
tract, inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria,
and also boosts the immune system.”(2) Other
benefits of B. longum include, “diarrhea
prevention in antibiotic treated patients,
cholesterol reduction, alleviation of lactose
intolerance symptoms, immune stimulation, and
cancer prevention.”(2). There are several types
of food sources in which B. longum can be found
and these food sources include: yogurt, various
types of fermented dairy foods, and cultured
vegetables such as sauerkraut. Additionally, B.
longum may be taken in supplement form. B.
longum, as well as other types of “good”
bacteria, have what is considered a symbiotic
relationship with human beings. This means that
the relationship between B. longum and human
begins is mutually beneficial. B. longum
ferments sugars into lactic acid thereby
lowering pH levels in the intestine (2).
Therefore, it assists the body in “maintain[ing]
a healthy balance of intestinal flora by
producing organic compounds—such as lactic acid,
hydrogen peroxide, and acetic acid—that increase
the acidity of the intestine and inhibit the
reproduction of many harmful bacteria.”(3)
Several studies involving the benefits of B.
longum have been conducted on both humans and
animals with positive outcomes. One such study
suggested that B. longum contained both
antimutagenic and anticarcinogenic properties as
asserted that the lactic acid produced by B.
longum may have an affect on tumor cells.(4) The
study that was conducted to test this hypothesis
involved rats and concluded that the “dietary
administration of lyophilized cultures of B.
longum resulted in significant suppression of
colon tumor incidence and tumor multiplicity and
also reduced tumor volume.”(4) In other words,
this “study on rats with colon cancer showed
that Bifidobacterium longum prevented the cancer
from spreading and stopped tumors from
growing.”(5). In addition to this research
various studies have been conducted regarding
the health effects of B. longum, and researchers
have concluded from these studies that B. longum
may minimize the effects of or prevent the
following: constipation associated with weight
loss, various types of allergies and allergic
diseases, cancer, inflammation associated with
Crohn's disease or colitis, or high levels of
Bifidobacterim longum is a probiotic that may be
beneficial to individuals suffering from
illnesses or diseases ranging from high
cholesterol to colon cancer. “Supplements of
Bifidobacterium longum, especially in
combination with other beneficial organisms,
hold the best hope for preventing colon cancer
and other types of digestive malignancies.”(5).
While all of the benefits of B. longum have yet
to be identified, a wealth of scientific data
does exist which suggests numerous ways in which
B. longum can be beneficial to the overall
health of an individual.
(1) Picco, M. (2008). What Exactly are
Probiotics? What Health Benefits Do They Offer?
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education Research (MFMER).
(2) Bifidobacterium Longum, published by Kenyon
College Department of Biology, 2007.
(3) Probiotics, published by Encyclopedia of
(4) Bifidobacterium Longum, A Lactic
Acid-Producing Intestinal Bacterium Inhibits
Colon Cancer and Modulates the Intermediate
Biomarkers of Colon Carcinogenesis, published by
the Division of Nutritional Carcinogenesis,
American Health Foundation, 1997.
(5) Earhart, M. (unknown). Beneficial Effects of
Bifidobacterium Longum. Published by eHow.
complete description of probiotics, along with
groundbreaking recent clinical research
illustrating the many ways probiotics can
prevent disease, can be found in
Probiotics - Protection Against Infection: Using
Nature's Tiny Warriors To Stem Infection,
This new compendium from one of our own site
contributing authors, Dr. Casey Adams, PhD., takes
the confusion out of selecting and supplementing
with probiotics. Referencing over 500 scientific
studies and reports, and with detailed
instructions on how to make your own probiotic
foods, this book is a must for anyone seeking to
understand the power of probiotics, and improve
their immunity and vitality.
for ordering information.
Discover Which Probiotics Can Help You!
to learn more about this
just released, groundbreaking book.