Best Probiotic Supplements
Over 500 different species of bacteria call the human digestive system home, with 85% considered to be beneficial bacteria. Don’t let the other 15% of the bacteria alarm you, though. When the majority of the flora in the gut is friendly, it keeps the bad bacteria in check. Scientists are discovering more and more that a well-balanced gut is vital to our general well-being. It has even been noted that in a healthy, well-balanced gut, the friendly bacteria can even enlist the bad bacteria to perform some helpful functions. However, in today’s world, most people do not have a healthy gut bacteria balance. This is largely due to the overuse of antibiotics and a poor, processed, sugar and carb-rich diet.
What are probiotics? Probiotics are a bacteria you can consume in various ways provide a number of benefits to your overall health. Sometimes, if you are not feeling like you are functioning at your best- if you are tired and your body feels run down- often it can be a result of a poor digestive function. If you have ever felt this way, or suffer from general gastric problems such as gas, bloating, or constipation, a probiotic supplement might be a useful tool to help you perform at your very best and feel better.
Many foods are naturally rich in probiotics, such as kimchi, sauerkraut, yogurt, pickled cucumbers and other fermented foods. However, it’s difficult to gauge just how many probiotics (measured in CFUs) occur naturally in a given food substance. If none of these foods appeal to you- which is understandable, not many of us consume sauerkraut on a daily basis- then it might be good to add probiotic supplements to your diet. Different strains of probiotic serve different functions in the body. When you are shopping for a supplement, you want to keep an eye on the packaging to ensure it has Lactobacillus species, Bifidobacteria, or Saccharomyces boulardii. These strains of probiotics are the essentials to promote digestive health.
It’s can become a little overwhelming to sift through all of the different brands to ensure that they have the ingredients to provide the desired effects. We have compiled of list of some of best probiotic supplements that are currently on the market.
10 Best Probiotic Supplements
Nutrition Essentials GMP
Users who opt to take this supplement will benefit in many areas. First, it improves the users overall digestive health, offers appetite and weight control, and boosts the immune system to help fight off common ailments like the flu or a cold. It helps increase calcium absorption to support bone density and can help clear up acne. Users can feel safe that this product was produced in a strict GMP and FDA certified lab.
These supplements cost a little bit more than other supplements that are currently on the market, but for the quality of products and the money back guarantee that they offer they are well worth the padded price tag.
The ingredients that make up this supplement are composed of some things that you might not exactly be able to pronounce, but the ingredients are considered to be non-allergenic, meaning that they don’t contain any milk or eggs, and they also don’t contain any artificial sweeteners, flavors, or colors.
These are offered in a non-chewable pill form that is slow-release throughout the day. The pill is a bit bigger than some of the other pills to make this list, but even those who tend to have a problem swallowing pills were able to take this supplement.
For those that want a quality supplement, and are willing to pay a little bit more, these are an excellent choice. They are easy to take and provide a myriad of benefits to the user.
With 15 targeted probiotic strains, these supplements pack a punch. They can help curb your appetite and aid in the achievement of a healthy body weight, and they also help with digestion. The also serve to boost your immune system to help avoid common ailments and infections (such as yeast infections and urinary tract infections). It also claims to increase your energy levels and aids in the absorption of nutrients into your body from the food that you eat.
These supplements fall about in the middle of the road in terms of price. They are not the most expensive supplements that are on the market, but they are by no means the least expensive. If you were curious about taking probiotic supplements, these would be a great place to start without breaking the bank.
This supplement is made from a proprietary blend of substances that contains all of the strains of probiotics that will help maintain healthy bacteria levels in your gut. This blend also has tumeric- which is a spice that is growing in popularity over the years because of its many medicinal benefits that help to generate a general feeling of well being.
The serving for these supplements in is in time-released pill form that is consumed just once a day. The small pearl-shaped pill is incredibly easy to swallow, even for those who have difficulty swallowing pills. Each bottle contains 60 capsules.
These are a tested and true probiotic supplement that have received high marks from the supplement community. If you are looking to try probiotic supplements and don’t want to break the bank with a high price tag, these are an excellent supplement to try.
Bio Schwartz Advanced
Much like the other supplements on this list, the benefits of Bio Swartz Advanced Strength Probiotic are not in short supply. In addition to excellent digestive health, these supplements also serve to bolster energy levels, they help nutrients to be absorbed into your system more freely, and they bolster your immune system to avoid common ailments such as the flu or a cold. It also can curb your appetite to help you reach your ideal weight.
For a product that is so widely regarded, and offers so many guarantees about their product- the price is pretty reasonable. This supplement sits in the middle of the price spectrum- it’s not the most expensive, but it is by far the least expensive.
BioSwarts prides themselves on using ingredients that are of the highest quality. They make sure that all of their ingredients are raw because the rawer the bacteria is, the more beneficial it will be. This blend contains all of the important strains of L probiotics to ensure that your gut maintains healthy bacteria levels, and it is also GMO and gluten-free.
Offered in a slow-release pill from, these pills are generally easy to take with little to no complaints from users. One pill is taken just once a day. The coating on them makes them more resilient to surviving stomach acids than other probiotic supplements, therefore making them more effective. Each bottle contains 60 capsules.
If you are looking for a great probiotic supplement that delivers on what it says that it will, offers a myriad of benefits, contains GMO-free ingredients, and is sold at a reasonable price, then this product will be an excellent fit for your supplement needs.
Bacillus subtilis is the name of a healthy bacteria that lives in the gut of humans and was discovered in 1915. The DE111 ingredient in this supplement promotes the growth of this healthy bacteria, and thus further promotes a healthy digestive system. Not only does this supplement help support the good bacteria, but it also helps fight off the bad bacteria. This supplement also contains the probiotic strains that help promote a healthy digestive system, aid in the absorption of nutrients into the system, and help avoid infections and ailments such as the common cold or the flu.
The price of these supplements are a tad higher than other supplements on this list, but not by much. For the additional benefits that you will receive from taking this supplement, it is well worth the little price bump.
This blend offers up users with an impressive 10 strains of the healthy L-type probiotics that help maintain healthy bacteria levels, and also contains prebiotics which will further help aid in digestion. It is made from ingredients that use a non-GMO formula.
This supplement is taken via pill form. The slow release capsule is more resilient to stomach acid and therefore is more effective than other supplements on the market. One serving is 2 capsules- which is different than many other products that require you only consume 1 pill. Each bottle contains 60 capsules.
These supplements truly pack a punch with the addition of DE111. For a slightly heavier price tag, users will not be disappointed with the many positive effects that these probiotic supplements can provide.
NatureWise Maximum Care
These supplements help to support a healthy digestive system, provide aid in absorbing nutrients into the body, and bolster the immune system to help avoid infections and common ailments. Not only does it help to aid in digestion, but it can also alleviate uncomfortable issues such as gas and bloating. Additionally, the slow release capsules survive in stomach acid and help promote a healthy bacteria in the gut.
The price for these supplements is significantly higher than other supplements to make this list. However, when you purchase a NatureWise product, they generate a donation of life-changing vitamins and minerals to a child or mother in need for an entire year. It may be a higher price tag, but you can also help do some good.
The ingredients found in this supplement host all of the important L-type probiotics that you need to look for when shopping for a great supplement. It is considered to be a safe pill to take and doesn’t contain any wheat, soy, milk, eggs, of wheat- so if you are sensitive to any allergens this is a perfectly safe supplement to try.
Users consume this supplement via a slow-release capsule. Even users that have difficulty swallowing pills did not struggle to swallow this product. One capsule is taken once a day, and one container come with 40 capsules.
If you are willing to pay more for a great product by a company that provides humanitarian efforts, NatureWise Maximum Care Time-Release Probiotics is an excellent choice.
This product is used for those that are suffering from gastric problems that have been persistent throughout the user’s life, brought on by stress, or are the result of a round of antibiotics. Each capsule contains 30 Billion CFU Per Capsule with Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria, and also has a Patented Bioreplenishing Probiotic to maintain healthy bacteria levels.
These supplements are almost double that of the other supplements found on this list. However, users report that for optimal digestive health, that these are the only supplements on the market that have worked for them.
The ingredients in this supplement are few and straight to the point. They include the top three L-type strains of bacteria that worth together harmoniously in the gut. It doesn’t have many of the extra ingredients that are harder to pronounce, and it doesn’t claim to offer any additional benefits to other parts of the body other than the gut. With 30 billion CFUs, you are certain to feel the benefits of the product.
Unlike other supplements on this list, it’s important that these capsules be refrigerated at all times. Each bottle contains 30 capsules that are a little more difficult to swallow than others, and need to be taken once a day.
If you have the cash, this supplement has the probiotic strains that you need. Many people have reported that this very product was prescribed by their doctors for patients with digestive difficulties. Users of this product have been using it for years to help maintain a healthy digestive system and to reduce chronic bloating and gas pressure, and will not use any other product for their digestive health.
The Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium strains found in this product are exactly the types of probiotics that you want to see in a product that promotes improved digestive function. These strains work by absorbing nutrients found in the food we eat into the bloodstream instead of simply passing through the digestive tract. DNA Shift calls digestive systems that don’t absorb nutrients as “leaky”, and this probiotic supplement helps to prevent that. The nutrients that are absorbed then travel to the brain to increase brain function and promote an overall feeling of well-being.
These supplements are a little bit more expensive than some of the others on the market, but not by much. These may seem like they cost the same as others, but each bottle only contains 30 capsules, whereas many of the others contain 60.
The vegetable capsules in this product contain the following ingredients: 11 strains of their patented probiotic blend that contains all of the L-type stains that you always want to keep an eye on when shopping for a new supplement (they are the probiotics that have very long and difficult names placed in front of an L). In addition to 50 billion cultures of probiotics, this product also contains 100 mg of prebiotics to further aid in digestion.
Each capsule is considered to be one serving and can be taken just once a day. One bottle contains a 30-day supply.
For users that are looking for a probiotic that will improve gut and brain health, and are willing to pay just a little bit more than other products, this product will be an excellent addition to your medicine cabinet.
This supplement promotes healthy digestive function with eight target probiotic strains with additional prebiotics. Prebiotics are beneficial because they are a nondigestible food ingredient that promotes the growth of beneficial microorganisms in the intestines. These probiotics all help in appetite suppression to help users achieve their weight loss goals. This product, much like many other supplements, helps promote a healthy immune system to avoid cold and flu, along with some infections such as yeast infections and urinary tract infections.
LoveBug Probiotics are priced slightly above many of the other probiotics on the market. Each bottle contains 30 supplements, unlike many of the other products on the market that contain 60 capsules per bottle.
LoveBug promotes simple, easy, and natural ingredients, and likes to avoid putting ingredients in their product that consumers don’t want. What you will find inside this pretty blue bottle is all of the L strains that you want to look for in a probiotic- and nothing else. If you were in the market for something simple that cuts to the chase- this is an excellent option.
One serving is this product is one pearl shaped that is taken once per day. Each bottle contains a 30-day serving. The pills are hard and are difficult to chew if the user has difficulty swallowing these pills.
LoveBug provides users a quality product that delivers exactly what it says it does. If you are looking for a probiotic that not only improves digestive health but also helps you lose weight and improve your overall sense of well-being, this supplement is a perfect fit for you.
Phillips' Colon Health
This supplement is the only brand on the market with these specially formulated probiotic strains to target digestive issues where they start and to help alleviate gas, bloating, and constipation that is brought on by everyday factors. It contains those two types of bacteria that you want to keep a lookout for when selecting a probiotic: Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria.
Phillips’ Probiotic is one of the least expensive supplements found on this list and is most likely the most accessible.
The ingredients that are found in this supplement include a proprietary blend of 1.5 billion cells. The active ingredients in this supplement are the very strains of bacteria that you want in a probiotic. Unfortunately, it also contains some the ingredients that you wouldn’t want to find in a supplement, such as potato starch, and gelatin.
This supplement is offered in a capsule form and should be taken once a day with a meal. Each bottle contains a 60-day supply of capsules. The capsules are an oblong shape and are generally easy to swallow.
For the users that want to buy a generally inexpensive probiotic from a company that has dominated the digestive health market for over 140 years, this would be a great product to try. And since Phillips is a household name and is widely known, you should be able to pop on down to your local pharmacy and pick up a box right now.
Nature's Bounty Acidophilus
The benefits of taking this particular supplement are simple and serve one purpose: to maintain general digestive health. Acidophilus is a specific friendly bacteria that is found in the digestive tract, and this bacterias function is to support an overall well being.
If you were underwhelmed by the benefits of this product, you will be overwhelmed by how little this supplement costs. Two bottles with 100 tablets will cost you a little more than a fancy cup of coffee at that nice coffee shop up the street. If you were looking to try a probiotic but couldn’t manage to pay the price for many of the supplements on the market, this product may be an excellent place to start.
The primary ingredient in this supplement is lactobacillus acidophilus-which is exactly what you want to find when shopping for supplements. It doesn’t have the other L- type strains as some of the others, but this is likely due to its lower price point. It does have some ingredients that aren’t really needed, such as vegetable cellulose, and vegetable stearic acid.
One serving consists of one pill, that should be consumed just once and day and preferably with a meal. Each bottle comes with 100 tablets.
Criteria Used For The Evaluation
Ingredients- what strains of probiotics were used?
There are many things to take into consideration when selecting the best probiotic supplements, including any specific ailment/body system you are targeting, as well as what strains of bacteria are in each supplement. If you are looking to improve over-all gut health, there are many different strains of bacteria that offer specific benefits. However, the three most generally beneficial strains are: Lactobacillus species, Bifidobacteria, or Saccharomyces boulardii. When selecting a supplement for you, be sure that it contains at least one of these strains. Additionally, some supplements offer something called “prebiotics”, which are nondigestible food ingredients that provide nourishment for the bacteria that calls your gut home.
This aspect is a no-brainer: when shopping for a superior probiotic supplement, it’s also important that the supplement provides the user with the proper benefits. In addition to providing a healthy digestive system, various strains can help the body absorb nutrients into one’s system, protect against infections such as yeast infections and urinary tract infections, and just generally provide the user a sense of well being. Basically, effective probiotics help regulate existing systems within the body to help it perform at its very best. In the gut, the beneficial bacteria perform vital biological functions and are a critical component of a healthy immune system.
Price- are the supplements affordable?
Supplements can be expensive, but they generally come in a wide price range. Many of the more expensive brands that are found on this list are concentrated formulas of only a few specific strains and provide concentrated amounts of good bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract. More concentrated formulas can be more expensive because they are often referred to by doctors for patients that suffer from general digestive issues from stress or diet.
Brand Recognition- how well known is the company that makes these supplements?
Many of the brands on this list aren’t exactly household names, but within the community of supplement users, they are well known. Recognized brands such as Phillips and Nature’s Bounty can offer users basic probiotic benefits at a lower price point. For added benefits and more concentrated blends of healthy bacterias, brands such as Dr. Tobias and Nutrition Essentials provide users with excellent benefits.
Other things to consider when selecting a probiotic supplement
There are various ways to consume probiotics. The first method is through foods such as apple cider vinegar, kimchi, and sauerkraut. The difficulty with consuming probiotics through food is that it is difficult to ensure that you are getting enough through each serving. Also, no one likes drinking apple cider vinegar. No one. It doesn’t taste good. That’s where the benefits of supplements come in- they offer a guaranteed daily serving of probiotics without the displeasure of drinking vinegar.
There are two different types of supplements- capsules and those in liquid form. Generally, liquid probiotics are stored in the refrigerators, and some of them can have unpleasant tastes. Ideally, capsules are generally the preferred method for probiotic supplements. A majority of them do not need to be stored in the refrigerator and come in a slow-release capsule form that doesn’t damage the delicate bacteria in abrasive stomach acids. Many times, when a supplement claims to offer many different strains, those strains can be low in quality. Once you have narrowed your selection down to just a couple of your top probiotic contenders, remember that the best probiotic supplement companies list the genus (i.e. Lactobacillus) species (i.e. acidophilus) and strain (i.e. DDS-1) of each beneficial microbe included in the probiotic supplement. If the strains aren’t listed on the packaging or bottle, then call the manufacturer to tell find out what strains are in the probiotic. If the company will not disclose the information or if they claim not to know, it may be best to choose another brand.
If you are looking to bolster your diet to help your body function to the best of its ability, probiotic supplements are an excellent addition. As with any dietary supplements, it’s important that you ask your doctor if they are right for you if you have any concerns or hesitations.
Q: Who needs probiotic supplements?
Probiotics can be used by everyone- they help ensure that your digestive system is functioning at its highest capacity. Sometimes healthy bacterias can be depleted over time due to lifestyle, diet, and stress. It’s a good idea for everyone to consume probiotics on a daily basis, but the individuals that can benefit the most are those suffering from any type of intestinal distress such as constipation, gas, and bloating.
Q: What does CFU stand for?
CFU is an abbreviation for ‘colony forming units’, and it is used as a system of measuring bacteria. When measuring CFUs, the numbers often climb into the millions and billions. Each unit of bacteria is responsible for reproducing an identical unit of bacteria. Why is the number so large? It’s because medical research has reported that there are 10 times more bacteria in the human body than human cells. The numbers are so large when measuring CFUs because in reference to a normal amount of bacteria in the intestine, 1 billion is a relatively low number.
Q: How many CFU’s should I consume on a daily basis?
Different supplements measure CFUs in the millions and billions. It can seem overwhelming to try and gauge exactly how many units you need each day when dealing with numbers in the millions and billions. Ideally, each supplement shown above provides a daily value of one billion CFUs per dosage. Many of the supplements that are currently on the market have between 1 to 10 billions CFUs, therefore any supplement that you purchase that is currently on the market will have enough CFUs per dosage.
Q: What are probiotics supplements made from?
It’s a complicated process- one that involves growing and fermenting bacteria from dairy products (although there are vegan options available on the market). After the bacteria has grown, it is taken for a spin in a centrifuge to separate the bacteria from food molecules. The bacteria is then freeze-dried to remove any remaining moisture. A highly-concentrated freeze-dried bacteria has the consistency of a power: and that’s what you find in a bottle of probiotic supplements.
Q: Are probiotics safe?
Yes, probiotics are safe. Probiotics are not an unfamiliar substance that you put into your body- your stomach and intestines already have healthy bacteria, it’s just that sometimes they don’t have enough to function at their highest capacity. Supplementing your diet with probiotics is similar to taking calcium chews for your bones. However, if you have any reservations whatsoever about how your body will respond to probiotic supplements, it is never a bad idea to consult your doctor first.
Q: What should I look for in a probiotic supplement?
When shopping around for the perfect probiotic supplement for you, you must first take into consideration what you want to gain from this product. Are you simply looking for a supplement that provides concentrated levels of a certain strain of aid in digestion and helps soothe an upset stomach? If you do, you should look for formulas that only contain 1 or 2 strains, such a Theralac Probiotic. Do you want a probiotic that offers general effects on gut and brain health? If that’s the case, you want to keep an eye out for formulas that offer 10-40 strains of different probiotics (be careful, though, because the more strains that are in a supplement means they are less potent that formulas with fewer strains). Or are you interested in probiotics to help you lose weight? If you want a probiotic for weight loss, an important word to look for is ‘prebiotic’. Prebiotics are generally made from oats, and are a nondigestible food ingredient that promotes the growth of beneficial microorganisms in the intestines. Prebiotics also serve to help you feel full to control your appetite.
Q: How do probiotic pills work?
Probiotic supplements work the same way that any vitamin works- the nutrients (or bacteria in this case) is absorbed into the body. The difficulty with making an effective supplement is that sometimes many of the bacteria can be killed by harsh stomach acids. This factor is what makes measuring the amount of CFUs consumed from natural foods difficult. When shopping for a probiotic, check the packaging to ensure that the company has addressed this issue and took the appropriate steps to fix it. Many of the capsules that you find on the market are coated with a protective substance that is resilient to stomach acids. Once the bacteria have made it into your digestive system, they serve to fight off bad bacteria and facilitate the absorption of nutrients from the food that is passing through your intestines into the body. This function helps promote an overall sense of well-being.
Q: I don’t feel well after starting my probiotic. Is it making me sick?!
Remember that the body has both good bacteria AND bad bacteria inside it. With our poor diet habits and antibiotic use, it is not uncommon for there to be a less than ideal balance between the good and bad bacteria. When you start introducing beneficial microbes into your system, the bad bacteria start to die off. As the pathogens are being killed off, they release toxins which can cause a multitude of symptoms. These symptoms include but are not limited to: increased stress, mood swings, headaches, general unwell feeling, bloating, digestive distress, rash, and a lack of energy. This typically means the probiotic is working. You can always consider reducing your dose and slowly increasing to the suggested daily dosage on the bottle over a few weeks. As always, contact your physician with any concerns.