posted by admin on May 6
Saccharomyceis a commonly found as a health supplement. But this is no recently introduced supplement, but a yeast with a long and interesting history.
It was discovered by a French microbiologist, Henri Boulard in 1923 when he was in IndoChina searching for new strains of yeast that could be used to make wine. Yeasts have been used in wine making for centuries but he wanted one that could withstand higher temperatures.
On his travels Boulard happened to visit a village that was in the midst of a cholera outbreak and people were being struck down with cholera left, right and center. Being a man of science Henri Boulard was both observant and curious. He noticed that some people were preparing a special tea made from the skins of the berries from the Litchi chinensis tree.
This is the fruit commonly called lychees. Often called the “King of Fruit” in their homeland they are a rich source of Vitamin C and potassium, but more than that, they also harbour Saccharomyceon their skin. In this respect they are similar to a grape where you can see yeast as the “bloom” on their skin.
The Lychee tree that harbours thishas been known for over 2000 years and there are still trees growing in Southern China that over 1000 years old. The Chinese so revered this fruit that Hsuan Tsung, the last emperor of the T’ang dynasty, had it bought over 600 miles by relays of fast traveling ponies for Lady Yang Kuei Fei, his favorite concubine.
This was a gift of love rather than to cure any intestinal problems that the Lady Yang Kuei Fei may have had!
However, the villagers in the cholera plagued village that Boulard visited were skinning the fruits and boiling them to make a tea which they drunk. This protected them against the diarrhea that was killing others. This fascinated him and he used his skills as a microbiologist to find out why. It was all due to a then unknown strain of yeast which he named Saccharomyce.
In 1947 Biocodex bought the patent to not only the strain of S boulardii that Henry Boulard had discovered but also the fermentation process used to extract its full goodness.