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Everyone has intestinal troubles at some point in their lives. Stress, anxiety, worry, and emotional and physical health come down to our stomachs. When we are out of balance, so too is our intestinal tracts and bacteria flora that live there. There are numerous probiotic wellness supplements to choose from, what are they and which are the best.
Ranking the Best Probiotics
Some of the best probiotic supplements are listed below with indications, uses and their reviews.
● Elm & Rye overall best for quality, value and immunity
● Seed’s DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic
● Culturelle Daily Probiotic, Digestive Health Capsules
● Probiotics 60 billion CFU
● Renew Life #1 Women’s Probiotic
● Dr Mercola Complete Probiotics
● Vegan Probiotic with capsules
● Dr Ohhira's Probiotics Original Formula 60 capsules
● Mason Natural, Probiotic Acidophilus with Pectin
● Flora Children’s Probiotic, 60 capsules
● Probiotic Protein
Elm & Rye is an up-and-coming entrant on the probiotics scene whose mission is to “improve the lives of humanity by making high-quality supplements accessible and convenient.” Their products are made from the highest quality ingredients and are tested by a third party to ensure purity and consistency. No additives or fillers are ever used.
In addition, the company has made a commitment to sustainable sourcing in all aspects of production, from farming to packaging to transportation. They aim to build long-term relationships with their customers by providing superior customer service and education that allows consumers to take charge of their health.
Elm & Rye’s Probiotic serves up a double whammy of supplement benefits, as it contains ingredients that both boost the functioning of the body’s immune system and promote healthy gut bacteria and ease digestion.
If transparency and social responsibility top your list of requirements for your probiotic supplier, Elm & Rye Probiotic should be at the top of your shopping list. At $50 for 30 tablets, they are not the cheapest option on this list, but orders always ship free.
Price: $50 (15 Servings) – Order Elm & Rye Probiotic Here
Sculpt Nation’s PROBIOTIC is a two-in-one supplement meant to both increase the “good bacteria” in your digestive system, and give them the food they need to thrive. This high-quality product contains 3.8 billion CFUs of six heavy-hitter probiotic strains in the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium bacteria families. Sculpt Nation adds inulin into their probiotic, providing fiber that can further diversify the gut microbiome and provide fuel for good bacteria to make important nutrients, such as short-chain fatty acids. “These prebiotics and probiotics go hand-in-hand to help you achieve optimal results,” explains registered dietician Heather Hoffman. With both a high strain and CFU count, Sculpt Nation PROBIOTIC is a top choice for an all-in-one gut health support system. If customers are not satisfied, they also offer a 100% money-back lifetime guarantee.
Seed’s DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic
DS-01™️ Daily Synbiotic is a probiotic and prebiotic formulated with 24 select strains that have been clinically and scientifically-studied to provide benefits in and beyond the gut, including digestive health, gut immune function, gut barrier integrity, skin health, heart health, and micronutrient synthesis.
Seed’s DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic: The ViaCap® and Probiotic Survivability
Seed’s patented capsule-in-capsule delivery system, ViaCap®, nests an inner probiotic capsule inside an outer prebiotic capsule. Their novel delivery system is engineered to deliver an average of 100% of the DS-01™’s probiotic starting dose through the end of the small intestine for complete delivery to the colon.
In additional to survivability, Seed’s ViaCap® system provides exceptional stability and bacterial viability—results from Seed’s heat and humidity testing indicate remarkable heat and humidity tolerance, specifically in the presence of 10 days of continuous exposure to 100°F heat. It also means there’s no refrigeration required.
Seed’s DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic: Patented, Non-Fermenting Prebiotics
While most prebiotics like FOS, GOS, or inulin, are categorized as dietary fibers Seed’s DS-01™ Microbiota-Accessible Polyphenolic Precursors™️ [MAPP] introduces a patented, plant-based, non-fermenting prebiotic compound (punicalagin) concentrated from Indian pomegranate. Punicalagin is further biotransformed by gut bacteria into beneficial metabolites for the body.
Seed’s DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic: Sustainably Delivered, Monthly
Unlike most probiotics packed in plastic, each component of Seed’s Sustainable Refill System 2.0 is designed to protect the DS-01™ Daily Synbiotic and be gentler on the Earth. Monthly refills ship in a certified home-compostable, bio-based pouch for customers to refill a recyclable glass jar. Refills are protected by a sheet of green cell foam, an entirely natural padding made from corn. While most padded mailers are petroleum-based, Seed’s corn form requires 70% less energy and produces 80% less greenhouse gases. It's biodegradeable, backyard-compostable, edible, and dissolves in water (seriously). It also comes with a convenient recyclable travel vial so you never miss a day on the go!
Synbiotic+ is a 3-in-1 clinically-studied prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotic to support a balanced gut microbiome.
The three way it works is 1) Bloat Support Probiotic strains LGG & BB-12 support relief of occasional discomforts such as mild and occasional bloating, gas, and diarrhea. 2) Maintain Good Growth, The prebiotics are designed to target undesirable bacteria in the gut and support the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. 3) Gut Barrier Health The postbiotic provides fuel to the cells that make up the gut lining and supports gut barrier function. Probiotics help support immune health. It’s estimated that 70% of the immune system is located in the gut.
This is a great one-stop-shop for all the probiotic. One daily capsule for simple, streamlined gut support. Delayed-release capsule designed to help reach the colon (not the stomach), an ideal place for probiotics to survive and grow.
Culturelle Daily Probiotic,Digestive Health Capsules
The Culturelle probiotic is made up of Lactobacillus GG, Inulin, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose, sucrose maltodextrin, sodium ascorbate, magnesium stearate, silicon dioxide and titanium dioxide. The lactobacillus improves your digestive functionality and has been scientifically proven to maintain a balance in your digestive system by preventing diarrhea, bloating the stomach, and gas. The recommended dose is one capsule a day meant for vegetarians, and it is gluten-free.
Probiotics 60 billion CFU
Probiotics 60 billion CFU contains 60 CFUs per serving, unlike other probiotic supplements that might exaggerate their serving CFU. These CFUs work to give the body maximum energy and stamina. The supplement is made of 10 probiotic strains and premium grade non-GMO ingredients. Probiotics and organic prebiotic components are clinically approved as effective and safe for consumption for improved digestive functionality. Benefits of Probiotics 60CFU are improved intestinal health, gas, and bloating relief after eating, reduced constipation without needing fiber foods, repairs a leaky intestinal tract, improved digestion, enhanced immune function against infections and promotes weight loss.
The once-daily Probiotic for women has 50 CFUs per serving that help with digestion, improve the immune system and general feminine health. It is made of prebiotics and six organic strains with D-Mannose and a cranberry extract called Procan, rich in antioxidants that protect the body from free radicals and oxidative stress. Women's prebiotic and probiotics with patented cranberry extract help fight Urinary Tract Infections and Vaginosis.
Renew Life #1 Women’s Probiotic
Renew life #1 women’s Probiotic is the highest-ranked probiotic for women as it has a potent Lactobacillus formula that keeps the Vagina in good health. It promotes uniform working of the stomach bowels as it is free from gluten, soy, and dairy products. Its effectiveness on the digestive system ensures that the immune system is improved, which happens through the intestines' epithelial lining repair. The supplement is of good quality, pure and potent, containing 25 billion cultures and prebiotic strains with universal ingredients. It has a lengthened shelf life and is best when refrigerated, but it is optional for the customer.
Dr Mercola Complete Probiotics
Dr Mercola Complete Probiotics is a probiotic supplement for kids with thirty servings per package. The probiotic product is good quality, GMO-free, gluten-free, and soy-free, safe to use ingredients. These probiotics provide a healthy environment for the growth of useful bacteria in the intestinal tract and boost your child's immune system. The Dr Mercola products have a 90-day return period with a refund when they are not satisfied with any products purchased. The main ingredient is vinegar, but the flavor is sweet and fruity to encourage kids to consume it. The product has a long shelf life before expiry.
Vegan Probiotic with Prebiotic capsules
Vegan Probiotic with Prebiotic Capsules is a 30-capsule supplement that is to be taken as two capsules daily before or with meals. It has about 16 Billion CFUs, meaning that it is highly potent and of good quality. It has Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus Reuteri, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium breve and Bifidobacterium longum, which are clinically studied strains that are clinically approved for consumption. Its other ingredients are purely organic and safe to improve general digestive health, immunity, absorption, reduce constipation and stomach gas.
Dr Ohhira's Probiotics Original Formula 60 capsules
Dr Ohhira's Probiotics Original formula has a three-year-long shelf life and is fermented in nature made from prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotics. It contains live cultures and is fully vegetarian with no gluten, no dairy product, and completely non-GMO. The prebiotic food components used are seaweed, mushroom, fruits, and vegetables. Live probiotics are twelve selected strains that have been cultured together with no fermentation. Postbiotics from the fermentation process include short-chained fatty acids, organic fatty acids like acetic, citric, fulvic, humic and phenyl lactic acid, trace amounts of minerals, lactic and amino acids. The supplement does not contain products that have carcinogenic substances. The probiotic supports good digestion, immune health and promotes a healthy microbial environment.
Mason Natural, Probiotic Acidophilus with Pectin
Mason Natural Probiotic Acidophilus with Pectin supplement comes in 100-capsule packages with gelatin, magnesium stearate and silica as the main ingredients. IT contains no additives like sugar, starch, sodium, yeast, soy, corn, wheat or dairy products, nuts, and other flavors. People can take it from all age groups, but pregnant and lactating mothers must consult with a physician before taking the supplements. They are most useful when taken with meals at least twice a day as dietary supplements. The Probiotic acidophilus helps in milk and sugar digestion, promoting general good health of the digestive system.
Flora Children’s probiotic contains seven strains specifically cultured for children; plus, raw probiotics are taken as a dietary supplement. Every capsule has at least 5billion viable cells during production, dropping to a 3billion upon expiration, two-year shelf life. They are meant for children and should be taken once daily after meals, but they can take more capsules for additional energy levels. The supplement has dairy and soy traces; consumers should consult with a health professional if they have underlying conditions.
The source of the dairy product in probiotic protein is organic milk from grass-fed cattle with no hormones. The product has 20million spore probiotics that maintain low lactose levels in your gastrointestinal tract, and a single serving is equal to total protein from two whole eggs. The package is 200 grams to be taken in 15 servings. Other ingredients apart from organic milk is Inulin extract from Chicory and Probiotic Lactospore powder. This supplement works at an increased speed to increase energy levels, soothe muscles, and promote glutathione production, improving the body's defense against illnesses.
HOW THE BEST PROBIOTICS WERE RATED
All probiotic companies boast of their products having the same beneficial properties, but the following factors were considered when ranking these probiotics.
Number of CFUs: Some probiotics contained only 1 billion CFUs, while others had up to 50 billion CFUs. CFUs do not determine the quality of a probiotic. Still, from their use, the higher the number of CFUs a probiotic has, the longer its shelf life, quality, and effectiveness.
Quality of Strains: Strain quality differs from one probiotic to another as some probiotics use one bacterial strain. In contrast, others use more than one to increase the efficiency of the strains on the products. Some brands use cheaper bacterial strains, which lower the probiotic quality as good quality probiotics are always more expensive.
Diversity of strains: Some probiotics use at most two strains that do not lower the product's quality, but different strains have different properties. Incorporating more strains in a probiotic will improve its quality and uses. Some strains may have specific functions, while others have generalized functions, which may work better when the strains are put together.
Transparency & Reputation: More probiotic companies are formulated daily, and some of these companies praise their products for earning quick money. They do this for their business growth and not to promote good health. We considered the reputation of these companies and their reputations to determine which probiotics were legit.
Delivery System: Probiotics are manufactured in forms to ensure they reach their destination and successfully do their work. Good probiotic companies may make their products in the form of fat balls or capsules that won't dissolve until they reach the gut.
Advertised Benefits: probiotic companies may exaggerate their usefulness to get a market. How a probiotic supplement is advertised was also considered in the ranking. A good probiotic company would be straightforward about its products’ benefits without lying since they believe in their product.
Doctor formulated: Some probiotics are made by medical professionals while others are made by commercial companies claiming to know about health without medical qualification. The probiotics prioritized here were by professional doctors.
Price and Value: Most probiotic companies use similar ingredients, but some companies set ridiculous prices on these products, making them unavailable to most consumers. We reviewed good quality probiotics that went for an affordable price of fewer than 80 dollars per package.
Scientific evidence of probiotics
Probiotics have existed for centuries as naturally occurring in yogurt, cheese, and other fermented dairy products. With technology improving, scientists and medical experts started making these probiotics' cultures using bacterial strains to develop supplements. These cultures are nurtured in a modern laboratory using friendly bacteria that are safe for human consumption.
Probiotic dosages are referred to as Colony Forming Units, mostly termed as CFUs. The higher the CFU, the longer the shelf life and the higher the quality of the probiotic. However, the mode of delivery affects a probiotic's effectiveness regardless of the CFUs. A well-coated probiotic with fewer CFUs may do more work than a poorly coated probiotic with more CFUs.
According to the National Health Interview Survey in 2012, at least 4million adults in the US had used Probiotic within the past 30days during the survey. Over the years, the number has increased immensely as more people discover these probiotics and new companies are developed more rapidly as technology improves.
Most digestive tract issue such as diarrhea, indigestion, bloating gas, stomach discomfort may be due to poorly balanced bacteria in the stomach. Antibiotics destroy both useful and harmful bacteria when taken; that's why most doctors recommend taking a probiotic after a complete antibiotic dosage.
Poor lifestyle choices such as alcohol, smoking cigarettes, abusing hard and soft drugs like marijuana, cocaine, and morphine, among other drugs, intoxicate the body resulting in your useful bacteria getting killed, leading to a non-uniformity of the digestive tract enzymes and bacteria.
Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Saccharomyces bourladii have been extensively studied over the years and found to have several benefits to the digestive system when used as strains in probiotic supplements. They have been used as single strains for specific nutrient needs or used with other strains to improve the Probiotic's quality, increase its uses and prolong shelf life.
Benefits of probiotic supplements according to a National Health Interview Survey Review are as follows:
o Aid in maintaining a balanced and healthy microbiome to promote the good functioning of intestinal bacteria.
o They help revive and rejuvenate the body's natural microorganisms after an attack of an illness or toxins from harmful substances.
o Produce substances that improve your digestive tract’s functions in the form of colonies that grow and metabolize to cover the intestinal wall's inner lining.
o Boost the body’s immune function to fight against diseases as most disease-causing organisms enter the body through the gastrointestinal system.
o Reduce oxidative stress by releasing useful antioxidants into the body that help protect the body from free radicals.
Other conditions found to have improved after probiotic supplements intake include indigestion, constipation, colic in babies, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, H pylori, Sepsis in infants, diarrhea caused by cancer treatment, acne, allergies and even asthma.
Another review on probiotics' benefits found out that probiotics improved the immune, gastrointestinal, and female reproductive systems.
The 2012 NIH review paper on health benefits of probiotic stated that the desirable properties of probiotics are:
● Tolerate Acid and bile tolerance in the gut.
● Adhesion to mucosal and epithelial surfaces to improve gut health.
● Antimicrobial activity against harmful bacteria.
● Tolerate Bile salt hydrolase activity in the intestines.
These properties were the key determinants of the usefulness and effectiveness of probiotics to the body.
Harvard Health had similar results on probiotic bacteria's effects on over diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, colic, urinary tract and vaginal infections, and stomach ulcers, among other conditions. It also concluded that probiotics' effectiveness differs from one another and that some probiotic strains had more benefits than others.
Some probiotics have immense health benefits while others have insignificant benefits, and they don't have an advanced protocol of being released into the market after manufacture. It makes assessing the exact benefits of specific probiotics difficult. It is very important to choose a good probiotic that works for you, of good quality, is made of good quality strains, has immense benefits, and is cost-effective.
Most people who use probiotics do not experience side effects, and even if they do, the effects are usually not diverse.
The harmful effects of probiotics can also emerge due to people suffering from chronic illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, liver cirrhosis, high blood pressure, neonates, asthmatic patients, stomach ulcers. These special groups of people should consult with their doctors before using the supplements to know whether they can reduce their dosages to accommodate their conditions.
Supplements could also cause harm if they are consumed after expiry, poor storage conditions that could tamper with the quality of the bacterial strain, such as storing in poorly ventilated areas, storing above or below recommended temperature or in damp areas.
Poorly coated probiotic supplements may also cause more harm than good as viable counts of bacteria, when exposed to a poor environment, tend to die faster than multiply.
According to a CDC review paper, some of these effects may include:
● The stomach is temporarily bloating with gas after ingesting the probiotic supplement.
● How the bowel constipates, and users get excessive thirst from ingesting yeast-based probiotics.
However, these side effects are temporary and are said to subside as more probiotics are taken, and the body adjusts. Some studies suggest that people who experience these side effects may reduce the dosage until the body adapts to the dosage. Still, if the side effects persist, consumers should stop taking the probiotic dosage.
The recommended dosage for probiotics
There is no specific recommended dosage for taking probiotics as they have varying strains and CFUs, which influence their body effectiveness.
In general, Probiotic contain between 1 to 100 billion Colony Forming Units in a single serving with 2 to 15 strains of bacteria in these servings. The probiotics come with their own recommended dose, which you can follow to get your purchase results.
FAQs about Probiotics
Q: What are Probiotics?
A: These are bacteria found in the intestinal tract that help improve the digestive and immune function plus other benefits to the body.
Q: Why do I need probiotics?
A: Probiotics help enhance gastrointestinal function, balance digestive enzymes, and relieve other complications like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, UTIs, diarrhea, ulcerative colitis, H. Pylori, colic in babies, runny bowels, among others.
Q: Are probiotics alive?
A: Probiotics are live microorganisms containing colony-forming units made from live bacteria in manufacturing laboratories. They work best when alive, but they still decompose to improve the body's immune and digestive functions once they die.
Q: What’s the difference between probiotics and prebiotics?
A: Probiotics and prebiotics play different roles in the body as prebiotics act as precursors to probiotics. Precursors are ingredients like fiber that work to facilitate probiotics, improving the general digestive and immune function.
Q: What do probiotics do in the digestive tract?
A: Some form of Colony Forming Units that grow and metabolize to enhance the immune function. Others help maintain the uniformity of bacteria present in the gastrointestinal tract.
Q: Are probiotics still helpful if they die while in the stomach?
A: Only about 10% of probiotic bacteria reach the gut when still alive. This small percentage helps the bacteria form Colony Forming Units, which will grow and metabolize to perform their required functions.
Q: Are probiotics useful for weight loss?
A: Probiotics indirectly help with weight loss as they improve digestion, metabolic is increased, meaning more calories are broken, which prevents the storage of excessive fat in the muscles.
Q: Which foods contain the most probiotic bacteria?
A: Most fermented dairy products have many CFUs of probiotic bacteria such as yogurt, sauerkraut, kefir, and kimchi. Some cheese types, fermented sausages and soy fermented foods and cereals also have probiotic bacteria.
Q: What is the best probiotic supplement?
A: Any of the mention probiotic supplements above is one of the best probiotic supplements as in 2022 with backed evidence of their benefits.
Q: Do probiotics help my immune system?
A: Probiotics cannot overdose as they don't have adverse contraindications when taken in excess. But it is safer to follow the recommended dose to avoid unnecessary complications. A healthy digestive system means an improved immune system as most microorganisms that affect the immune function are found in the digestive tract.
Q: How many CFUs are good for a probiotic?
A: Probiotics may contain CFUs between 1 billion to 100 billion units. But these Colony Forming Units do not detect a probiotic's effectiveness since this is influenced by the mode it is delivered to the body and the quality of strains found in the probiotic. Any number of colony-forming units above 1 billion units makes a good probiotic as long as it has a good delivery system and high-quality bacteria strains.
FINAL VERDICT ON BEST PROBIOTICS
Probiotic supplements have immense benefits to the digestive system. They balance the bacteria present and form colony-forming units that then grow and work to keep a standard metabolic environment conducive to other useful bacteria. Although there is no specific dosage for all probiotics, different probiotic supplements have their specific prescriptions to be followed for the best results.
The number of CFUs does not determine how useful a probiotic supplement is. These are directly influenced by how a probiotic is made to ensure it reaches the gastrointestinal tract with the highest survival CFUs. The quality of bacterial strains also affects how effective a probiotic will be as some companies use cheap strains of low quality, which affects a product's effectiveness.
Many companies have ventured into probiotic production, but we recommended purchasing probiotics made by doctors as they have higher effectiveness because experts make them.
Probiotics have little to no side effects, but pregnant and lactating mothers should consult with their physician before using these products. They work hand in hand with prebiotics, although they perform different functions. Other benefits of probiotics include reduced bloating and occasional gas buildup. It reduces constipation after meals, faster metabolism of nutrients helps elevate weight loss, enhances better sleep at night, helps ease menopausal effects, eases colic in babies, and enhances the general immune function of your body.
These lists help you understand which and why you should purchase probiotics for regular use according to your needs. A probiotic's shelf life also helps determine its potency as good quality probiotics have longer shelf lives than poor quality probiotics. Generally, fermented products usually have a longer shelf life than their original products.
The final verdict on probiotics is that they have endless benefits to our bodies, and scientists, health workers, and researchers should explore deeper their unique uses, not just general uses as they are in the current market. Probiotics are safe to use as dietary supplements by people from all age groups at all times
After reviewing the best probiotic supplements, here are some of the highest-ranked in terms of value, quality, potency, purity, functions, immunity, and target groups:
● Best Probiotic for Overall Value Quality Immunity: ELM & RYE
● Best Probiotic for Men: Dr Mercola Complete Probiotics
● Best Probiotic for Potency: Probiotics 60 billion CFU
● Best Probiotic for Women: Renew Life #1 Women’s Probiotic
● Best Probiotic for Weight Loss: Provitalize Best weight natural weight management probiotic
● Best probiotic for constipation: Vegan Probiotic with capsules
● Best probiotic for irritable bowel syndrome: Culturelle Daily Probiotic, Digestive Health Capsules
● Best for Children: Flora Children’s Probiotic, 60 capsules
RECOMMENDATIONS ON PROBIOTICS
Probiotic supplements work by balancing useful microorganisms in the intestines, keeping them healthy, and their usefulness has helped them gain popularity among men and women over the years. The microorganisms can be taken for good digestive health and improved immune health and boost the body's energy levels. In recent years, some have started using probiotics for weight loss. Probiotics have superior health benefits to the body as it improves overall digestive health and other general body functions like metabolism.
Many probiotic supplements are said to have similar functions. Some probiotics work differently as various probiotics target the body's gut immune function, energy levels, weight loss, and general body health.
Why should you purchase probiotic supplements? Who are probiotic supplements meant to help? Are probiotic supplements affordable? What are the benefits of probiotic supplements? Do probiotic supplements have side effects? These are some of the questions you might ask yourself before purchasing a probiotic product. They can be purchased as dietary supplements or prescribed by the doctor.
Food and drug commissions should formulate more protocols to ensure that probiotics are examined further so that only those qualified in the market can be sold.
Purchase probiotics from well-known companies with a good reputation and good reviews.
Reviews for online purchases of probiotics could help guide what to purchase online besides these reviews, and consumers could use that for guidance.
Purchasing doctor-manufactured probiotics could help minimize getting conned by buying fake products from business-oriented firms.
Laws and bills should be put in place to govern probiotic sales to ensure quality products only.
Further studies should be done on probiotics to discover more of their uses and then categorize them as per their specialization.
Researchers should do more studies on probiotics to determine further uses, functionality, determine specific dosages meant for specific uses and create space for more product formulation.