How To Choose The Right Probiotic
The amount of probiotics on the market is overwhelming. How can you choose which one is right for you when there are so many options? Here are a few best practices to follow when looking to add a probiotic to your supplement routine.
What are probiotics?
Probiotics are known as 'friendly bacteria' and have been credited with optimizing digestion, improving immune function, and enhancing nutrient absorption. In addition, probiotics improve skin, decrease bloating, and relieve stress. They do this by repopulating the gut with good bacteria and restoring balance brought on by bad bacteria, yeast, etc.
Colony Forming Units
Colony Forming Units (CFUs) are the number of live and active micro-organisms found in one serving of a probiotic. This can range from 1 to 10 billion. Are more CFUs better? That depends on your body. Some people will need more, some less. Chat with your doctor to determine what’s right for you!If your capsule doesn’t list the number of CFUs, it’s probably better to find another brand so you know exactly what’s going into your body.
Reading Your Probiotic Label
The first thing you should do when you are looking for a new probiotic is determined WHAT you are trying to treat. Then look for probiotics that include species that are intended to treat those issues. If a probiotic you are looking for doesn’t include a complete ingredient list, find another brand.
The two most common genera (plural for genus) are lactobacillus or bifidobacterium. The species will vary from probiotic to probiotic. Your probiotic package should list both the genera and species which may look like this: Lactobacillus (genus) rhamnosus (species). Each of these species identifies which gut issue it treats.
Here is a list of ingredients in Gut Garden’s Perfect Probiotic and what they treat:
- Bacillus coagulans: diarrhea and prevent candida
- Bifidobacterium bifidum: diarrhea and constipation
- Lactobacillus plantarum: normalizes stool and relieves abdominal pain
- Bifidobacterium breve: constipation, diarrhea, cold, and flu
- Bifidobacterium lactis: breaks down food, absorbs nutrients
- Lactobacillus reuteri: constipation, diarrhea, cold, and flu
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus: prevents the growth of harmful bacteria in the stomach and intestines
- Saccharomyces boulardii: diarrhea, acne, and a digestive tract infection that can lead to ulcers
- Bifidobacterium infantis: treats bowel problems, eczema, vaginal yeast infections, lactose intolerance, and urinary tract infections
- Bifidobacterium longum: alleviates gastrointestinal, immunological, and infectious diseases
There are no FDA regulations placed on probiotics, so it’s important to choose a probiotic that has gone through third-party testing. This testing ensures the product includes what it says it does on the package and is free of harmful ingredients. All of Gut Garden’s products are third-party tested for quality assurance. Packaging can also be misleading. Phrases like 'natural' ingredients are just marketing terms that cannot be proven even via third-party testing. We hope this helps you better understand how to choose the probiotic that works for your body! If you have any specific questions about our Perfect Probiotics, shoot us a note -- we'll be happy to help!