Some researchers have started to combine cultured intestinal bacteria along with probiotic pills to treat C diff infection. A cultured intestinal bacteria synthetic stool containing 33 different intestinal bacteria was able to cure C diff in two patients who failed antibiotic therapy multiple times.
A follow up study found that the cultured intestinal bacteria was present in 25% of the patients’ bacterial population.6 Fecal transplant remains the only method providing lasting transplantation of probiotics into individuals with C diff. However, there is a role for traditional over the counter probiotics as an adjunct to traditional treatment C diff treatments.
We recommend anyone recovering from C diff incorporate a diet high in probiotics.
Probiotics for C diff
Meta-studies have shown that probiotics are helpful for the prevention of C diff. An analysis of 20 randomized studies found that probiotics reduced C diff reoccurence by 66%.7 Another review of 19 randomized studies found that probiotics reduced C diff reoccurence by 58%.8
Probiotics come in many different strengths and strains. However, only certain strains and strengths have demonstrated efficacy for C diff prevention: Lactobacillus acidophilus, Saccharomyces boulardii, and Lactobacillus rhamnosus.
One of the most widely used probiotic strains, Lactobacillus rhamnosus is well documented for its ability to relieve GI infections and diarrhea.9
Lactobacillus acidophilus is a strain of lactic acid bacteria which lives in the human stomach and intestines. It can promote recovery from diarrhea, particularly in young children at a dose greater than 10 billion CFUs per day.10
After Infection: C diff Precautions and Natural Alternatives
If you have already suffered a C diff infection, you can reduce the risk or recurrence by making some simple lifestyle changes. The place to start is your diet.
Naturally Probiotic Rich Foods
As discussed earlier, Clostridium difficile is a disease that results from the disruption of natural flora and the lack of probiotics. Add these probiotic rich foods to your diet to support the natural flora in your gut.
Prebiotics are types of food or food ingredients which help promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the GI tract. They nourish beneficial bacterial and help them thrive. Prebiotics consist of indigestible plant fibers, also known as oligosaccharides. As they pass through the stomach without being affected by stomach acid, prebiotics stimulate beneficial changes throughout the digestive tract by providing nutrient sources to beneficial bacteria that live in the gut and intestines. Along with probiotics, prebiotics play an important role in supporting digestive and immune health. Natural sources of prebiotics include:
- Chicory root
- Cooked or raw onions
- Raw jicama
- Jerusalem artichokes