For The Life In Your Food: The Science of Probiotics


Edward F. Block IV, Ph.D.

Last Update February 2006


All rights reserved by Edward F. Block IV, Ph.D.


(Chapters listed below the Preface)

The essential message of this work is that you should make every effort to eat foods which have beneficial microorganisms as an integral part of that food. Food which is the product of natural fermentation such as yogurt, sauerkraut and pickles. These foods have compounds known as vitamins, minerals, effectors, cofactors and antibiotics that are the by-products of fermentation processes. Most importantly they have the microorganisms themselves. All are important for the health of the individual whom is lucky these days to have these microorganisms as commensal and symbiotic microflora of their alimentary tract.

Most commercial foods available off the shelf of your grocery store is as sterile as possible in order to ensure that it has maximum shelf life and reaches you in edible condition. Thus it is only by chance that anyone in the industrialized environment receives an innoculum of beneficial microorganisms in the foods which are available in the supermarket.

The first part of the book relates the changes in food consumption due to changes in everyday living conditions from groups of people in the Hunting-Gathering Mode to the modern consumer in the Supermarket Mode. The role of microorganisms in the production of human foodstuffs and animal feeds will be discussed. Briefly, microbial ecology will be discussed with the intent to show how microorganisms produce the vitamins, effectors, cofactors and antibiotics which we require for optimum health.

The second part of the book deals with the crass commercialization of food production by the capitalistic elements in our society whose only criterion is for the easiest and quickest route to short term profits. Using microorganisms to produce sdible foods is labor intensive and requires prescribed conditions and time for completion. Using chemical means of producing imitations of ethnic foods is fast and much less expensive.

The third part of the book shows how anyone may begin to prepare their own favorite foods which are the result of microbial fermentations. Foods prepared to yield delicious and flavorful supplements to the everyday diet. Foods which aid in the creation of a healthy and efficiently functioning alimentary tract. Happy eating and long life!

Chapter One-The Hunting-Gathering Mode

Chapter Two-The Adoption of Animal Husbandry and Agriculture

Chapter Three-Alimentary Tract Microflora

Chapter Four-Microbial Ecology

Chapter Five-Live Foods

Healing Arts