Lactobacillus bulgaricus NBRC 13953

Lactobacillus bulgaricus is the primary strain of bacteria used in the production of yogurt, and it plays a central role in the ripening of some cheeses. Lactic acid is a postbiotic metabolite produced by Lactobacillus bulgaricus.

The Russian scientist Elie Metchnikoff discovered Lactobacillus bulgaricus in the late 1800s. Metchnikoff surveyed 36 European countries and found that more Bulgarians lived to the age of 100 in relatively good health than all the other countries surveyed.

Metchnikoff proposed that aging is caused by toxic bacteria in the gut and that lactic acid could improve health and prolong life. He attributed the longevity of Bulgarian peasants to their daily consumption of yogurt that contained what was called Bulgarian bacteria, which became known as Lactobacillus bulgaricus.

Metchnikoff’s training as a bacteriologist made him realize that Bulgarians’ health and longevity were partially due to their daily consumption of fermented dairy products containing Lactobacillus bacteria that produced lactic acid. Metchnikoff is now called The Father of Probiotics because he was the first scientist to realize that some bacteria are beneficial and provide health benefits.

Metchnikoff believed that the lactic acid produced by Lactobacillus bacteria aided digestion and detoxification in the intestinal tract, promoting better health and longevity. Subsequently, the strain of Lactobacillus bacteria found in the fermented Bulgarian dairy products was named Lactobacillus bulgaricus. In 2014, the name of Lactobacillus bulgaricus was changed to Lactobacillus delbrueckii subspecies.