“You are what you eat” is an old adage that’s really true; educated consumers know it and are extremely conscious of it these days. This awareness is thanks to social media, other consumers, and a rise of those afflicted with a variety of food intolerances to things such as gluten, lactose, sugars, legumes, and other foods, which cause gas and bloating, among other things.

Good digestion is important, and a lot of products in the that marketplace benefiting gut health include probiotics and enzymes. How is this marketplace responding to an increased interest from consumers?

John Davidson is the Director of Innovation and Education for Deerland Probiotics and Enzymes. Davidson, a 30-year veteran of the enzyme supplement industry, joined us on the podcast to educate us on what’s new in product development and formulation. He breaks down the current marketplace for probiotic solutions, how consumer demand is driving production and creating growing pains, and why clinical studies are the most difficult-to-surpass but most necessary barrier to entry.

As more technologies and information become available, Deerland has focused more on probiotics; especially via the Human Microbiome Project, a worldwide initiative that’s attempting to map out the entire human gut and determine which genetic materials interact with us as a body host and with one another.

It used to be, said Davidson, that we could only study organisms that we could culture on a plate, but now we can see the DNA and identify items that can’t even be cultured. We trace the “fingerprints” back to find out what those individual organisms are.

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