Antibacterial Supplement for
Stomach Distress and Ulcers

revolutionary gastrointestinal support formulation, designed by Life Enhancement, contains the first identified natural substance, mastic gum (or simply mastic), that can deliver a serious blow to one of the most feared gastrointestinal bacteria in the world, Helicobacter pylori.1 Once H. pylori is inhibited or eradicated in the gastrointestinal tract, proper gastrointestinal function can be restored. Mastic may also help to maintain proper digestive function.2

Mastic has been shown to be effective against many different strains of the ulcer-causing bacterium H. pylori.1 This naturally occurring resin from the mastic tree, Pistacia lentiscus, severely damages H. pylori by creating a chink in its cellular structure. New and improved, this product now contains the phytonutrients hyperforin, thyme, and cinnamon, which are also injurious to H. pylori and to certain antibiotic-resistant bacteria.3,4

BOON TO HUMAN HEALTH WORLDWIDE
It has been estimated that about 40% of the entire population of the world is infected with H. pylori. Because this bacterium has been intimately connected with peptic ulcers, as well as carcinomas of the stomach, the widespread use of a mastic-containing product would be a boon to human health worldwide. (Peptic ulcers occur in three places: the duodenum, the stomach, and, rarely, the esophagus.)

Traditionally, mastic has been used as a food antioxidant (preservative) and medical antiseptic, and it has been chewed by people of the Mediterranean for thousands of years for gastrointestinal health benefits and to mitigate bad breath.

VALUABLE FOR DYSPEPSIA TOO
Various studies have shown mastic to be effective against upper abdominal pain, heartburn, and gastric (stomach) and duodenal ulcers. Nearly all persons with duodenal ulcers are infected with H. pylori. On the other hand, not all gastric ulcers are caused by this organism, but the incidence is still about 70%. In one study, mastic gave complete symptomatic relief from gastric ulcers.

It is estimated that half of those over 50 years old are infected with H. pylori. Many of them have no outward symptoms and appear to be healthy, yet investigation has proved that they all have gastritis, an inflammation of the stomach lining. Under certain conditions, gastritis can be a setup for the destructive action of H. pylori, which causes ulcers by attacking the weakened stomach lining.

Gastritis underlies the development of many, if not most, ulcers and is also responsible for many digestive complaints, perhaps even stomach cancer. Gastritis may be accompanied by stomach pain or discomfort, bloating, nausea, or heartburn, among other symptoms. Dyspepsia, or indigestion, is also related to H. pylori and manifests itself in similar ways. A recent meta-analysis (critical survey) of 23 published studies found that subjects infected with H. pylori were 60% more likely than uninfected subjects to have non-ulcer-related dyspepsia. And when the bacterium was eradicated, dyspeptic symptoms were 90% more likely to improve, compared with patients in whom the infection persisted.5

When mastic's antimicrobial activity was tested on a wide range of bacteria in vitro, it was found to significantly reduce the colonies of various species, including Staphylococcus aureus (a common cause of various skin infections), Escherichia coli (commonly infects the urinary tract and is found in traveler's diarrhea), and Sarcina lutea.6 More interesting still, the mastic was also able to destroy harmful fungi, such as Candida albicans (commonly infects the gastrointestinal tract, skin, and vagina), as well as Candida parapsilosis, Torulopsis glabrata, and Cryptococcus neoformans.

Thus, mastic may prove valuable for "yeast syndrome," which is a significant problem for many women. It can represent a runaway imbalance of naturally occurring yeast that overgrows to the point of interfering with many of the body's functions, producing symptoms such as vaginitis, thrush, athlete's foot, migraine, fatigue, allergies, and many others. Fungi and yeast can enter the bloodstream and cause life-threatening infections.

THYME AND CINNAMON EFFECTIVE AGAINST H. PYLORI
Based on a hypothesis stemming from the commonality of their mechanisms of action, the extracts of several plants were examined for their effect on H. pylori. Thyme and cinnamon, especially the former, both showed a significant ability to inhibit its growth.4 Moreover, the amount of thyme needed to inhibit H. pylori completely is readily achievable with either a liquid or powdered extract. Other studies have found a broad spectrum of antibacterial characteristics for cinnamon, which inhibits many microorganisms, including those involved in meat spoilage. Both thyme and cinnamon are also effective against certain fungi.

HYPERFORIN EFFECTIVE AGAINST ANTIBIOTIC-RESISTANT BACTERIA
St. John's wort, an herb used for antidepressant purposes, contains a compound, hyperforin, that has been found to possess antibacterial properties.3 The chemical structure of hyperforin is unlike that of any other known antibiotic. Even in low concentrations in laboratory studies, hyperforin is effective against a wide range of bacteria, including E. coli and other Gram-positive bacteria, and multiresistant bacteria.7 It is capable of inhibiting penicillin-resistant and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

Conventional treatment of H. pylori infections has consisted of multiple antibiotic therapy multiple times per day for one to two weeks. Frequently the therapy fails when the patient cannot practically adhere to such a regimen and thus remains infected, or the bacteria in question may be drug-resistant mutant strains that are immune to medicine's best antibiotics.

You need only open the pages of your newspaper, turn on the tube, or click onto the Web to hear about virulent new bacterial strains breaking through the best defense lines thrown up by conventional medicine. Not that antibiotics are not of great value - that's not in question. The real question is, are we diminishing their value by overusing them and allowing stronger, more resistant bacteria to develop that can do us severe harm and even threaten our lives? The chilling answer is "yes." More and more, the world of drug-resistant bacteria seems to be encroaching on the doorsteps of our sanctuaries from disease. Fortuitously, hyperforin is one unsuspected ally, found in the common herb St. John's wort, which is now enlisted into the fight to preserve our health.

A good defense is a good offense, and a nutritional supplement - now including hyperforin, thyme, and cinnamon, along with the strength of classic mastic powder - is here. In these days of heightened bacterial consciousness, it could provide the natural, healthy alternative you're looking for.

References

  1. Huwez FU, Thirlwell D, Cockayne A, Ala'Aldeen DA. Mastic gum kills Helicobacter pylori. NEJM 1998 Dec 24;339(26):1946.
  2. Al-Said MS, Ageel AM, Parmar NS, Tariq M. Evaluation of mastic, a crude drug obtained from Pistacia lentiscus for gastric and duodenal anti-ulcer activity. J Ethnopharmacol 1986;15:271-8.
  3. Gurevich AI, Dobrynin VN, Kolosov MN, Popravko SA, Riabova ID. Antibiotic hyperforin from Hypericum perforatum L. Antibiotiki 1971 Jun;16(6):510-3.
  4. Tabak M, Armon R, Potasman I, Neeman I. In vitro inhibition of Helicobacter pylori by extracts of thyme. J Appl Bacteriol 1996 Jun;80(6):667-72.
  5. Jaakkimainen EL, Linton A, Boyle E, Tudiver F. Is Helicobacter pylori associated with non-ulcer dyspepsia and will eradication improve symptoms? A meta-analysis. BMJ 1999;319:1040-4.
  6. Iauk L, Ragusa S, Rapisarda A, Franco S, Nicolosi VM. In vitro antimicrobial activity of Pistacia lentiscus L. extracts: Preliminary report. J Chemother 1996;8:207-9.
  7. Schempp CM, Pelz K, Wittmer A, Schopf E, Simon JC. Antibacterial activity of hyperforin from St. John's wort, against multiresistant Staphylococcus aureus and gram-positive bacteria. Lancet 1999 Jun 19;353(9170):2129.

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