Friday, September 2, 2011

SPECIAL REPORT: Obesity and Prebiotics!

This month's topic is something that touches just about everyone at some point in their lives - Weight Management and Obesity. The statistics are startling! The CDC reports that about one-third of U.S. adults (33.8%) are obese and approximately 17% (or 12.5 million) of children and adolescents aged 2-19 years are obese.

During the past 20 years (in the US), there has been a dramatic increase in obesity to what some think are epidemic levels. Our SPECIAL REPORT on Weight Management and Prebiotics explores the link between what we eat and our gut microbiota as well as other health issues that arise out of being overweight.

Learning about the role of nutrition (specifically pebiotic fiber) is an important first step in any weight management program. This collection of articles is a great start for just about everyone. And when your done reading, please remember to take your daily dose of your favorite Prebiotin Prebiotic Fiber Supplement. This month's promotional code - Skinny10 saves you 10% on your purchase of any Prebiotin Formula through September 30th.

As always, we welcome your feedback. Just write us at or share your success story with others by posting your comments about Prebiotin on

Until next time . . .

Yours in good health;

Frank W. Jackson, MD
CEO of Jackson GI Medical

Monday, August 22, 2011

Hunger and Fullness Hormones and Prebiotics

Last week I gave an overview on weight loss and how certain prebiotics likely are an important part of any weight loss program. As noted, a prebiotic is a special type of plant fiber that selectively promotes the very best bacteria in the gut to grow and in so doing provide a wide range of health benefits. This talk will focus on a newly emerging knowledge on how some prebiotics have an effect on the body outside those that occur with the good bacteria in the lower gut.

The “Hunger Hormone” in the Stomach

There is a hunger hormone that is made in the wall of the stomach. Its technical name is ghrelin (the h is silent), but it basically is a hunger hormone. When the stomach is empty, this hunger hormone is produced and enters the blood stream. It is carried to the brain where it exerts a feeling of hunger.

It is not quite this simple, though. Some of this hormone is made in a certain part of the brain and it has an effect on some nerve cells and even the production of growth hormone. It is also made in the pancreas. However, for those with a weight problem, the major point to remember is that the hunger hormone is made in the stomach and makes you want to get food and eat it.

The “Fullness Hormone” in the Small Bowel

Yes, there is a hormone that gets out into the blood that gives you the sensation of fullness. In fact there are several different fullness hormones with technical names like leptin and GLP 1. The main fullness hormone is made in the wall of the lower small bowel. As food moves through this area of the gut, this fullness hormone is manufactured and released into the blood stream. Here again, the blood is carried to the brain where a sensation of fullness is given. Generally you stop eating at this point.

Summary of the Appetite Hormones

  • The hunger hormone is made in the wall of the stomach and released when the stomach is empty.
  • The fullness hormone is made in the wall of the lower bowel and is released when food enters this part of the gut.

Prebiotics and the Gut Hormones

It has come as a surprise that prebiotics might have an effect on these hormones. After all, prebiotics are plant fibers that are not digested by the small bowel but are fermented by the good bacteria in the colon. How could these simple plant fibers have such an effect? These are questions that intrigue researchers who are in full pursuit of the answer to this and other related questions. What can not be questioned anymore is the fact that certain of these prebiotics drive these hormones in the desired direction (link #1 below). In fact, when the formula in our Prebiotin is taken 8 grams twice a day before breakfast and lunch, the energy intake of these individuals dropped a significant 6%. This was just reported at the conference of the European Society of Gastroenterology in the spring of 2011.

One Thing More

Another medical study (link #2 below) has shown even more clearly what happens when our Prebiotin formula was taken 8 grams twice a day in any liquid. The senses of hunger and satiety or fullness was measured 3 hours after ingestion. A very clear sense of fullness was seen in those taking the prebiotic. This was statistically significant. In addition, the meaurement of the appetite hormones for satiety or fullness in the blood rose significantly. So, this is one more piece of evidence that prebiotics can have a positive role to play in weight loss.

Related Links



3) Weight Loss and Gut Bacteria

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Intestinal Infection, What to do?

Foods, especially many vegetables and fruits, may move across a nation’s borders. As such we may not really know how many of these foods are grown or whether the grower’s have the same high standards that we expect our own farmers to have. In the US we have remarkably few intestinal infections, but they do sporadically occur. How do we protect ourselves from these infections? Well, aside from buying fresh wholesome foods, we can significantly increase our intake of those foods with soluble fibers in them, especially ones that are rich in prebiotics fibers. These prebiotic fibers are the ones that promote the best growth of the very best bacteria within our gut, specifically in the colon. When these good bacteria proliferate, they produce substances that increase the health of the bowel wall, the very site where an infection with a bad bacteria may occur.


How can we make the bacterial make up of the colon so robust that these pathogenic bugs cannot grow and make their attachments to the bowel wall? How might this work?

  • Increase the percentage of good bacteria in the gut by a high vegetable diet and using a prebiotic supplement. Both of these will accomplish the goal of making it less likely that these bad bugs will hook up.
  • When these good bacteria predominate, they may produce substances that act like antibiotics. These are called bacteriocins. And, they act to kill or prevent the growth of bad bacteria. They also make a substance called butyrate. This nutrient beneficially acidifies the colon and also provides nourishment to the bowel wall itself.
  • Prebiotics such as Prebiotin provide this benefit. Probiotic bacteria may help but we are not sure of this benefit.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Hypertension – How does “Know Your Numbers” become “Lower Your Numbers” with Prebiotic Fibers

High blood pressure is very common – 1 in 10 Americans has high blood pressure. Since 1984, the month of May has been proclaimed National Blood Pressure Awareness Month in the United States. The official motto of the blood pressure awareness initiative is “know your numbers”. Unfortunately, many people that have hypertension do not know that they have it. So self awareness and education is key to preventing the possible catastrophic outcomes – heart attack and stroke.

High Blood Pressure Awareness

High blood pressure is related to high salt or sodium intake, diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, and is part of the metabolic syndrome. The later consists of hypertension, overweight coronary heart factors and early diabetes. A significant finding in many of these persons is an abnormal mix of colon bacteria. These bugs are now front and center in the medical community because we now know that a healthy mix of bacteria provide many health benefits. On the other side of the coin, it is known that when bad bacteria predominate in the gut, that this seems to lead to a leaky abnormal gut wall. In turn, bacteria and endotoxins (commonly called toxins) can seep through and into the blood stream. They have been implicated in a number of medical conditions.

What to do?

Each of the above conditions requires the physician’s overview. But prebiotics can play a role in their treatment. Prebiotics are natural plant fibers that exert a beneficial role in correcting the abnormal condition in the colon. As these conditions come back to normal, it can be assumed that blood pressure control is better. Hypertension treatment, especially when it is combined with other of the above conditions, generally consists of:

  • Less salt
  • Blood sugar control
  • Weight control
  • An increase in plant foods that contain prebiotic fiber
  • Regular exercise
  • A diet rich in prebiotics or a prebiotic supplement such as Prebiotin

Plants rich in prebiotics

The general recommendation for total fiber intake each day is 35 grams in males and 25 grams for females depending on weight. When you read the labels on food, you will find that the word fiber is listed. This refers to total fiber including both insoluble and soluble fibers. These are both good and each provide a wide range of benefits. However, it is the soluble fibers that have the most benefit and within this group it is the prebiotic soluble fibers that are the best. You find these in onions, garlic, leeks, asparagus, yams, agave, chicory root, Jerusalem artichokes, and others. If you eat the recommended amount of total fiber in each day, you are likely getting enough prebiotics. To be sure a pure chicory root supplement like Prebiotin can be taken. A medical article on hypertension and prebiotics is provided below.

Anti-hypertensive Properties of Plant-Based Prebiotics

Related Articles

Fiber and Death
Valentine’s Day, Prebiotics and Heart Disease Prevention

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Prebiotin Prebiotics to be featured on “Healthy House Call” Radio Talk Show

Jackson GI Medical’s Prebiotin Family of Prebiotic Dietary Supplements will be featured on “Healthy House Call,” a live call-in radio program that airs on Phoenix’s KFNX News / Talk radio and is streamed live on the internet. Follow this link to listen to the broadcast.

The next program is scheduled to air May 5, 2011 at 12:00p.m.edt / 9:00am mdt and will feature a live interview with Prebiotin’s maker, Frank W. Jackson M.D. The daily show is broadcast live from Healthy Habits Health Foods located at 6029 N 7th Street, in Phoenix, AZ. Additional segments will air in May and June of this year.

“We’re extremely excited to talk with the show’s host Dr. Dan Koontz about the importance of dietary prebiotics and educate his listeners on the health benefits realized by daily use of Prebiotin,”said Dr. Jackson, founder and chairman of Jackson GI Medical. “While bad bacteria spawn sickness, the good colonic bacteria brings health benefits such as stronger bones, strengthened immunity, reduced constipation, greater appetite control, Better glycemic, diabetic control and reduced blood triglyceride levels,” adds Jackson.

The prebiotic fibers in Prebiotin, Oligofructose-Enriched-Inulin, or OEI, are proven to stimulate good bacteria growth throughout the entire colon, thus optimizing the prebiotic benefits realized by taking it daily.

Prebiotin is an all-natural, plant-derived, full-spectrum prebiotic fiber. It’s made from chicory root and comes as a powder that can be stirred into liquids or sprinkled on cereal or oatmeal. It reaches your colon intact and nourishes the good bacteria living there.

Jackson GI Medical offers Prebiotin in four formulations:

It costs about .60 cents a serving. In the greater Phoenix area Prebiotin can be found at Healthy Habits Health Food and twoCooper Nutrition locations.

Additional live broadcasts featuring Prebiotin Prebiotics are scheduled for:

  • May 5th – 12:00p.m.edt / 9:00am mdt;
  • May 19th – 12:00p.m.edt / 9:00am mdt;
  • June 2nd – 12:00p.m.edt / 9:00am mdt
  • June 16th 12:00p.m.edt / 9:00am mdt.

Additional information about Prebiotin can be found by visiting Inquiries about offering Prebiotin in your store should be sent to

About Jackson GI Medical

Founded by Frank W. Jackson, M.D., Gastroenterologist, Jackson GI Medical is dedicated to the responsible development and marketing of medically credible nutritional supplements in an all-too-often irresponsible marketplace. We back our product with third-party medical research, and emphasize no-nonsense, no-hype educational materials on our site. A nutritionally-aware customer is our favorite customer, so please contact us if you have any suggestions. Or, visit our corporate website at

About Frank W. Jackson, M.D.

Dr. Jackson was educated at Princeton, Johns Hopkins and the University of Pennsylvania and practiced gastroenterology for almost 40 years. He is the founder of several companies, including Jackson GI Medical, Chek-Med Systems, GI Supply and Meducate. Dr. Jackson leads product development and medical research efforts for the company.

About Dr. Dan Koontz

Health Star Talk Show Host Dr. Dan Koontz is a nutritional expert with a medical background and is a walking talking encyclopedia of health and wellness knowledge. He has over 25 years of successful and market dominant broadcasting experience as a radio talk show host.

About “Healthy House Call”

“Healthy House Call” is broadcast live on KFNX ‘News-Talk Radio’ 1100., Monday through Friday 9 AM to 10 AM from Healthy Habit Health Foods It is also streamed broadcast live via the World Wide Web at, and; click the “Listen Live” button for streaming audio. Millions from all over the world have internet access to the show.

About Healthy Habit Health Foods

Healthy Habit Health Foods is the most stocked and best priced health store in the greater Phoenix area and is located at 6029 N 7th Street, Phoenix. Josh Hartman, the owner of Healthy Habit Health Foods is the executive producer of the show.

About Cooper’s Nutrition

Cooper’s Nutrition offers a diverse selection of products at discounted prices and feature a variety of vitamins, health supplements and specialty diet products, including a large line of gluten-free offerings. Cooper’s Nutrition operates two full-service health and nutritional supplement stores – 36889 N Tom Darlington, Carefree and 20701 N. Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, Az.

Press inquiries should be directed to or 855-GoodGut (855-466-3488)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Metabolic Syndrome and Brain Function – The Role of Prebiotics

Metabolic syndrome is very common. It consists of hypertension, overweight, abnormal cholesterol and/or triglycerides, prediabetes or actual diabetes, and, often, heart disease with atherosclerosis. A recent study published in Neurology (the peer-review journal published by the American Academy of Neurology) reported some remarkable findings on this condition:

  1. The bacteria mix in the colon, called the microflora, is abnormal. This, in turn, leads to damage to the wall of the gut whereby the gut becomes leaky or permeable and certain toxins and even bacteria leach into the bowel wall. Some of these move into the blood stream and cause further problems.
  2. It is known that certain plant fibers, called prebiotics, stimulate the good bacteria already in the gut to grow and displace the bad ones. It seems that this then improves and even corrects the leaky gut problem.
  3. A recent large study of people aged 65 and older showed that those with the metabolic syndrome had a significant decline in their mental function as measured by standard cognitive function tests (link below). Wow!

So, the metabolic syndrome not only leads to atherosclerosis and heart disease, but also to a decline in the way our brain works.

The Solution

Correct the metabolic syndrome with the standard means of weight and blood sugar control. And, correct the bacterial imbalance in the gut with prebiotics. Our Prebiotin is the premier prebiotic. Since cholesterol and/or triglyceride are always part of the metabolic syndrome, our Prebiotin Heart Health preparation is recommended.

Metabolic syndrome and cognitive decline in French elders

Related Articles:

Fatty Liver Disease, Gut Bateria and Prebiotic Fiber

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Probiotics and Stomach Acid

A question I frequently get is about probiotics and how to protect these possibly beneficial bugs from the very harsh stomach acid. There is more to this question than meets the eye, so let’s look at several parts of the probiotic picture. First, probiotics are bacteria, present in yogurt, other dairy products and pills. The hope is that these probiotics will establish a presence in the lower gut and render beneficial health effects.

Probiotics Are Live Organisms

As such they can live or die under a variety of circumstances. One such circumstance is time. Some bacteria make spores which can live for many years and then blossom and grow. Most probiotics do not make spores, so they gradually die off if they do not find a comfortable place to grow, meaning a moist, warm, friendly environment like the colon. However, when a probiotic sits on a shelf in a store, the bugs gradually die. The longer they are in a warehouse or on a store shelf the fewer live bacteria will be present. Refrigeration likely prolongs the life of probiotics but we don’t know for which ones and for how long. Most manufacturers will not tell you.

Yogurt and Probiotics

You can be sure that yogurt and other such dairy products have fresh, live bacteria in them. Plus, it is refrigerated. These are two good things. However, we do not know how many bacteria are in a serving and manufacturers do not put this on the labels. You could be getting a very small dose which would not be enough to make a difference. Additionally, many of these bacteria will be killed by stomach acid, especially when eaten with food.

Probiotics and Stomach Acid

Here is the tricky part of the probiotic puzzle. Stomach acid is very, very strong. It does and will kill the majority of bacteria that get into the stomach each day. So, how do you protect the probiotic bacteria you take from this “bacteria execution chamber” which everyone has inside them? Here are some things you can do. First, take the probiotic on an empty stomach. When the stomach is empty, it is not making much acid. You can open a capsule and mix it with a small amount of water. The stomach will empty out liquid in 15-20 minutes, but will keep food in it for 60-90 minutes. During this time it grinds the food up and mixes it with acid and harsh enzymes which are designed to get the food ready for absorption in the small intestine. Another trick you can do is to mix the probiotic with some bicarbonate of soda, a strong alkaline powder. This will neutralize the stomach acid temporarily until the probitoic can get through the stomach.

Coating a Probiotic

Some manufacturers will coat the bacteria with a whey (wheat) protein to resist stomach acid. We do not know how well this works and it is not for a celiac or wheat intolerant person. Another substance is called alginate which coats and protects the bacteria until it gets into the small intestine where it is safe. Again, we don’t really know how well this works. It sounds like it should. You have to check with the manufacturer to know if this is part of their production technique.

So here are the summary points:

  • Use a refrigerated probiotic which has just come onto the store shelf. The longer into the future is the expiration date, the more live probiotics are likely to be in the capsule.
  • Take a probiotic on an empty stomach with 4-6 oz of water. Even better, twist or cut the capsule and empty the powdered bacteria into a glass, add the water and a teaspoon of soda bicarbonate to neutralize the stomach acid.
  • Yogurt is great and most people get a good feeling that they are doing something good for their gut. We don’t know how much, but the adverisers tell us we will almost live forever if we eat their product.
  • There are some probiotics that are helpful for certain gastrointestinal diseases. Your physician is the person to help you make the right choice.

Prebiotics and Probiotics

No discussion of probiotics would be complete without mentioning prebiotics. A prebiotic is not a probiotic. A prebiotic is a specialized plant fiber that easily gets through the stomach unchanged and the feeds the good colon bacteria which everyone already has in their colon. That’s right. We have over a 1000 species of bacteria in the colon and many of these are the good gals and guys. Feeding them good prebiotic plant fiber is the key to creating a rich furnace of potent good bacteria. You can learn more about prebiotics from the 2 links below.

Learn about prebiotics on our website:

The Benefits of Prebiotics

Prebiotic Differences

Frequently Asked Questions about Prebiotics

Learn about health benefits of prebiotics: