Probiotics may be defined as microbial agents that can benefit humans and have been used primarily by mankind in fermented foods. A representative of probiotics is lactic acid bacteria (LAB), which has received attention recently due to its perceived health benefits. We reviewed research papers about Bifidobacerium and Lactobacillus, which are two of the most known of the LAB. Bifidobacerium alleviates diarrhea from various causes by improving intestinal microflora, and it has been reported that it reduces Helicobacter pylori bacteria known as the cause of gastric ulcer and stomach cancer. Bifidobacerium has also reported to be effective on immunization and allergy, reduce blood cholesterol, cancer, lactose intolerance. Lactobacillus alleviates diarrhea but has not fully demonstrated its effectiveness relative to other health issues. Several lactic acid bacteria and yeast are expected to act as probiotics, so, in the future, more research on the health benefits of lactic acid bacteria is needed.
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