Combo Study: a probiotic and a digestive aid

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Combo Study: a probiotic and a digestive aid

I've been discussing an idea for some time now with several members of this and the CFS community. I thought it was about time to get it listed as one of our potential studies.

The idea has been percolating for a while but came to the forefront when this post was released on Health Rising:

In the comments you can find our discussion.

In brief, I had been working on ways to alter the pH of the body (toward alkalinity) in an attempt to neutralize the lactic acid which has been shown to be extremely high in CFS patients and likely underlying post exertional malaise (PEM). I began with baking soda, which was effective but led to stomach problems. This led to the finding that CFS is also often associated with low stomach acid and that, paradoxically, could lead to an overly acidic body. This obviously wouldn't help PEM. So, I was about to suggest a study using Betaine HCl to increase stomach acid, which should alkalize the system a little and may help PEM. Then I came across the above mentioned post where I learned that many CFS patients have overgrowth of several lactic-acid producing bacteria in the intestines and reduction of another (an E. coli strain). Upregulating E. coli has apparently worked for some people. And so, the two ideas were merged.

The study I'm now proposing is to take Mutaflor (a well-proven E. coli enhancing probiotic) and/or betaine hydrochloride (a digestive aid). I think each person should have the choice of whether to use both products or only one. This will allow us to assess whether one is more useful than the other or whether they work best in combination. The Betaine should increase stomach acid and ensure there is bicarbonate release to neutralize the environment in the small intestine. This may aid the new E coli strains in their battle to gain territory from the lactic acid producing bacteria... or so we hope.


I've posted the same message in the CFS forum and suggest we continue the discussion there as there are many more member in that community.