10 Best Probiotic Supplements Tested and Fully Reviewed
Our digestive tracts are complicated things. There’s so much going on in our intestines that works to process food and to deliver those benefits to our bodies. A lot of this happens with the help of certain bacteria that need to be kept in balance in order to promote nutrient absorption. Too much of one bacterium can throw off your digestion and end up causing rather unpleasant symptoms. This is where probiotics can really make a difference. Runners need good nutrition to stay at the top of their game and using the right supplements can make all the difference.
The flora and fauna and that work together in your digestive tract are referred to as microbiota. When these are working, your body isn’t getting enough of the right nutrition. You can rebalance these by taking certain probiotics or supplements that can help to reintroduce certain things to your digestive tract. Some of these probiotics also support gut health in other ways.
- 1MD Complete Probiotic
- Over 51-billion CFU’s
- Vitamin Bounty Pro 50
- All natural
- Hyper Biotics Pro 15
- Easy to swallow
We all understand the importance of “regularity” and this is something else that can be dependent on the bacteria living in your intestines. Your nutrition is primarily dependent on what’s absorbed by your digestive track as your food goes through the digestive process. The only way the nutrients can be extracted and absorbed is if they’re broken down properly.
In this doesn’t happen you dealing with things like bloating, constipation, lethargy, a poor immune system, and a plethora of other health problems. This is really a lot bigger than just the nutrition you need to be successful in your running endeavors. Athletes need to be at their peak performance, and they can only do this if their bodies are properly fueled.
This is where probiotics come in. Yes, eating right and drinking plenty of water have a huge impact on your health, but those extra supplements can help to give you the edge you need in a healthy and positive way.
10 Best Probiotic Supplements
1. 1MD Complete Probiotics
-11 proven probiotic strains
-Created by a board certified gastroenterologist and pediatrician
-All sub-strains are identified
-Based on 10 years of medical research
-Patented absorbtion technology
2. Vitamin Bounty Pro 50
This 13 strain, 50 billion CFU formula has everything you need to get back to healthy, happier digestion to include Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium lactis, Brevis, Casei, Plantarum, Rhamnosus, Salivarius, Paracasei, Bulgaricus, Longum, and fermented greens. No matter how bloated or uncomfortable digestion has become, the Vitamin Bounty Pro 50 Probiotic is ready to help you get your comfort and health back - fast!
Packaging and delivery
The strains have been intelligently freeze-dried to ensure both efficient storage and release. Using the patented DRcap technology, a delayed response within each capsule helps create a consistent introduction of CFU’s within the body for a gentler response, the release of more cultures and excellent efficiency.
This product contains only CFU’s without artificial fillers to increase capsule size. It is gluten-free, using Magnesium Stearate, Cellulose Powder and Silica for natural preservation and assistance with digestion. L. acidophilus, B. lactis, L. brevis, L. casei, L. plantarum, L. rhamnosus, L. salivarius, L. paracasei, L. bulgaricus, B. bifidum, B. brevis, B. longum, Saccharomyces, and fermented greens - all freeze-dried for added potency and longlife.
The strains are acceptable for women and men. Some will highlight a women’s specific needs (like acidophilus for yeast reduction) and some accentuate male-focused benefits (like plantarum for prostate health).
Medium price: 30 servings - each 2 capsules - at a reasonable price point.
- 13 strains
- All natural
- Delayed release technology
- Must be refrigerated
- Check for contraindications with certain fermented greens including oat, wheat, barley or alfalfa
3. Hyper Biotics Pro 15
5 billion CFU’s per pearl tablet, and 15 probiotic strains selected to combat everything from low energy, toxins within the environment and antibiotics. The inclusion of Streptococcus is unique, intelligent, and a further gain to the gut!
Packaging and delivery
A tiny, micropacked pearl takes the place of traditional capsules without sacrificing ingredients or delivery. In fact, this little time-release gem has no fillers or preservatives. Trademark Bio-tract means release of bacteria into the gut over 8-10 hours and the successful bypassing of stomach acids for healthy colonization in both the large and small intestine. And with patented LiveBac manufacturing, enjoy Pro 15 for 18 months. That’s some serious shelf life!
Lactose and GMO free, enjoy pure strains to include L. plantarum, L. acidophilus, B. infantis, L. casei, B. longum, L. rhamnosus, B. lactis, L. reuteri, L. salivarius, L. paracasei, L. gasseri, B. bifidum, B. breve and S. thermophilus. The addition of turmeric for inflammation is a smart touch. Enjoy zero soy, dairy, gluten, wheat nuts, sugar, artificial colors, flavorings or preservatives.
Not a gender specific probiotic, but S. thermophilus is scientifically proven to assist with rheumatoid arthritis more commonly found to affect older males. Parents should check with a physician before administering to children.
Medium price, two month supply.
- Smart technology including BIO-tract for excellent time release capability
- LiveBac for extended shelf life
- Small pearl for easy swallow
- Packages are not insulated during delivery. We suggest making arrangements to be available in hotter climates so the product does not sit in direct heat.
4. Vitamin Bounty Daily Probiotic
5 billion organisms in each capsule or serving. 13 probiotic strains plus fermented greens. The combination of these key strains and ingredients provide a daily protection against unwanted bacteria, and their negative impact which can include immune-related illness, pervasive disease and low energy.
Packaging and delivery
Patented DRcap translates to a time release formula promising successful travel to targeted areas of your gut. Add a freeze dried probiotic strain technology for secured freshness and the certainty of delivering living organisms. All of this enveloped in a vegetable based capsule, free of preservatives and artificial coloring and smaller sized for easier swallowing. No refrigeration necessary.
Gluten and GMO-free, we love this pure, vegetable capsule. Fermented greens to enhance digestion and further combat harmful bacterias and pathogens. No fillers or preservatives.
An excellent recommendation for both men and women.
Medium priced, with a 30 day supply
- Patented DRcap for time release and targeted delivery
- No fillers or preservatives
- 13 strains designed for daily use
- Fermented greens should be considered in contrast to daily diet and potential allergies
- Not recommended for children without consulting with a physician, first
11. Dr Natura Flora Protect Probiotic
This product does not require the use of home refrigeration as it is best consumed at normal room temperature.
You can refrigerate but before taking it, remove it from the fridge and let it reach room temperature as it is known to be moisture sensitive.
Freeze drying treatment has been used for the probiotic strains to ensure the bacteria retain ongoing full integrity.
If you have allergies this product is a safe choice for you though it does contain small traces of rice maltodextrin and soy.
Read more and decide if this product will work for you.
With each serving you get 8 billion cells, that's a hefty number and this is the blending,
This list means positive benefits for you.
Packaging and delivery.
Vist Amazon to see the current best deal, you won't be disappointed.
You get eight freeze-dried strains of probiotic bacteria and eight billion cells with each serving. You get Lactobacillus acidophilus a beneficial naturally existing bacteria in our bodies. Benefits for a wide range of common - ailments.
Benefit your immune system with a large intestine bacteria known as Streptococcus thermophiles.
All of the listed ingredients are known to have positive far-reaching benefits for the body
Zero salt, gluten, starch, yeast. shellfish, egg, milk or wheat and zero artificial colors or flavors. If your allergic to soy or rice, this product won't work for you.
It's not the most pricey product though the cost reflects value for money.
Not gender specific
sixty capsules-two a day
freeze-dried strains of probiotic bacteria
eight billion cells with each serving
Zero salt, gluten, starch, yeast. shellfish, egg, milk or wheat and zero artificial colors or flavors
benefits the immune system
Cost a bit more than some other choices
12. GS-Supplements Probiotic Dietary Supplement
30 billion CFU’s and 13 strains: L Acidophilus, L. Rhamnosus, B. Longum, Bl Breve, L Casei, B. Coagulans, S. Thermophilus, B. breve, B. Infantis, L. Gasseri, L Reuteri, L. Fermentum and S. Baldari work in combination to decrease stomach acids, resist both bad bacteria and other digestive harm and increase immunity. An intelligent blend meant to assist in health maintenance and also boost health in those suffering immune related and repair health problems.
Packaging and delivery
Designed to work specifically within the digestive tract, the GS Probiotic is a stabilizing spectrum of live organisms meant to be refrigerated for optimum use. Time release technology “lets” the capsules work over time, throughout the day which means consistent digestive stabilization for better resistance to harm. The bottle contains 60 capsules and one-to-two can be taken daily with meals. Soft gel capsules comprised of vegan ingredients are healthier and faster working. We like that!
The GS Probiotic conforms to USP Standards and is manufactured in an FDA registered facility, manufactured to GMP standards. The ingredients are vegetarian though additional fillers are not listed but may include starch or silica.
A great combination blend for both genders but not good for children due to the targeted impact on intestines which in youth may prove counterproductive to digestion.
Extremely good price for a one-to-two month supply
- 13 mindful strains
- Time released technology for overall better digestion
- Vegan capsules
- Budget friendly
- Some ingredients are not listed, though this product conforms to all health and safety standards
8. Herrmann Optimal Immune Support Biotics
Seven vital strainsstrains of bacteria and 5.75 billion live bacteria CFU’s translate to your own optimum health. Feel more balanced as good bacteria begin to work fast to keep digestion healthy. Cramping, bloating and gas can feel crippling. With the Hermann Probiotic formulation, you’ll enjoy a healthier gut and happier life!
Packaging and delivery
DE111 helps to control microbial populations and is clinically shown to encourage a healthy gut flora, promoting digestions of fats and also complex carbohydrates. We love its use in the Hermann Probiotic! 60 vegetable capsules to be taken once each day with a meal are formulated with time released technology to help work consistently and with resistance to stomach acid. Airtight bottling and heat stabilization promote live bacteria throughout use without concern of expiration.
This formulation includes a NON-GMO version of DE111, vegetable cellulose used in the capsule, maltodextrin, an easily digested polysaccharide produced from starch (used as filler) quickly absorbs while medium chain triglycerides (forms of palm kernel and coconut oil) help to fill product while promoting fast and easy absorption. Strains include L. rhamnosus, L. casei, L. longum, L. acidophilus, L. plantarum, and B breve.
The strains are beneficial to both men and women.
Extremely budget friendly!
- Seven vital strains
- Time-release capsule
- 60 capsules and budget friendly price
- Some may need to take the maximum dose of 3 per day (though one is recommended as “typical”. This may make the budget friendly price less proportional to the number of capsules.
9. Probiotics 40 by Ivy Naturals
40 billion CFU’s, and four major strains of probiotics work to increase your intestinal tract’s better health. Whether you’re looking to overcome disease or injury or simply health maintenancehealth maintenance, the Probiotics 40 has your health goals covered!
Packaging and delivery
2 capsules twice daily with meals keep good bacteria alive and well, ready to dominate any obstacles including disease pathogens or bad bacteria. Patented - and phenomenal - MAKTREK Bypass Technology ensures rapid delivery of probiotics guaranteed to survive gut acid.
A combination of strains including L. acidophilus, B. lactis, L. plantarum, and L. paracasei, with Marine polysaccharide complex and fructooligosaccharide work in harmony to give users a product that’s easily digestible, quick to metabolize and highly effective in combating digestive challenges. Cellulose (vegetable) is used in the formulation of the capsule and rice maltodextrin and L-leucine are used to help fill and preserve the strain ingredients.
Perfect for everyone! The gluten-free, all-vegetarian formula translates to comfortable use for all.
2 capsule servings per container with a quantity of 30 offered at a medium price point.
- Special technology helps to deliver probiotic without worry of gut acid interference
- Excellent strains for boosted immunity
- All vegan, gluten free
- A small quantity for a medium price (15 servings per bottle) at the recommended dose.
10. Culturelle probiotics
100% Lactobacillus GG in vegetarian capsules.
Packaging and delivery
Vegetarian capsules in boxed packaging
100% Lactobacillus GG in vegetarian capsules.
d. These specific probiotics are specifically digestive probiotics--meaning they are for any adult struggling with digestive issues and in need of a probiotic supplement to improve their symptoms. Culturelle also has specific supplements for children as well!
These are averagely priced for a 30 day supply
- 100% Lactobacillus GG
- Specifically for your digestive tract
- Vegetarian capsule
- Also have options for kids
- Only provides you with one strand
6. Kyolic Kyo-Dophilus Digestion and Immune Health Probiotic Supplement
1.5 billion live cells per capsule, the lactophilus, b. Fidum and b longum work together are specially cultured in this unique formula to be heat stable and resistant to stomach acid. Enjoy a stronger defense against bad bacteria and other digestive harm that can undermine immunityimmunity, healthy digestion and generally good health.
Packaging and delivery
The technology used in the formulation of this probiotic offers heat stabilization which means you can throw it in your suitcase without worries of climate control. Soft gel capsules are encased in an airtight bottle to ensure the preservation of the ingredients while the capsules themselves are designed for fast absorption. The recommended dose is one capsule twice a day for adults (with meals), half that for children and for infants, a half capsule sprinkled over food or in juice.
Gelatin, starch (corn, potato or tapioca) and silica are used as fillers and help to preserve the strains which include three that are well known for their capacity to both adapt to human intestine and combat harmful bacteria.
A perfect probiotic not only for men and women, but gentle and safe enough for children and even infants.
180 capsules included for a fair price
- 3 strains well known for adaptability to human intestine
- Acid resistant
- Gelatin is not vegan for those desire a plant-based probiotic
We’ve tried, tested, and reviewed some of the best probiotics on the market. Running is our business, and we understand that it’s necessary to have a healthy digestive tract to get in peak physical shape. It’s very important to review anything before committing to any supplement or nutritional regimen. Make sure that you talk it over with your doctor and get additional information on what might work best for you. Every person’s body is different, and you may not respond the same way to the supplements as somebody else. But, this list will give you the best information for a person who’s generally healthy and just looking to feel a little bit better.
Remember, keeping your digestive system maintained, healthy and able to combat harm translates to your strongest immunity, and healthiest self. It’s vital to select strains and even CFU’s that keep you feeling energetic and balanced. When your system is off, feelings of discomfort can begin to interfere with daily function and even happiness.
Your “other brain” operates at its best when good bacteria are alive and well, and destroying pathogens and bad bacteria that cause illness, fatigue, skin issues and even emotional upset. We are excited for you to make your selection and to feel the noticeable difference in your health and life quality – fast!
The Criteria We Used To Find the Top 10 Best Probiotic Supplements
Many people are still confused about what to look for in their probiotic. With so many options – literally thousands – it’s no wonder the selection process can feel a bit overwhelming! The truth is, there are key features that should be considered “necessary” within the formulation of your probiotic product. After careful examination of the scientific research available today, we’ve narrowed down an excellent list of probiotics containing the criteria you’ll want in your own selection.
Bacteria are grouped into colony forming units (CFUs). You may find a lot of information out there about pumping your body full of as many bacteria as possible to try and jumpstart your digestive system. In truth, there’s very little scientific research to back this up. In fact, too much of a good thing can quickly turn into a bad one. Like we said earlier, every person is different, and you may require a different mixture of bacteria to get everything working smoothly. You’re going to want to look at the key strains contained within the probiotic. These are the CFU’s that are going to be introduced to your body, and that will hopefully help to balance everything out. It’s not always the quantity, but sometimes the quality that needs to be considered first.
Each strain has its own job and can be located in different areas of the digestive tract. A combination of strains can help to keep your gut in proper balance. For example, L. acidophilus assists nutrient absorption and readily helps with the digestion of dairy, B. bifidum is found in both intestines and protects the gut wall while B. longum scavenges for toxins in adult digestive tracts. However, if you’re looking for a probiotic to manage a specific digestive issue like traveller’s diarrhea or gut balance following antibiotics, a potent one-strain that’s highly concentrated may be most effective (you’ll see a couple such products in our top ten buying guide).
Packaging and Delivery
When it comes to probiotics, packaging matters. You have to remember the bacteria are a living thing, and if they’re not packaged correctly they will die. You can pick out the best probiotic in the world and receive no benefits if it wasn’t properly transported and kept alive in the process. It’s also important to look for time released capsules. You want these to dissolve slowly and to introduce the bacteria to your body in a controlled way. This gives you plenty of time to absorb everything and jump starts the entire process. Try to find a vegetable-based capsule for better metabolizing and absorption of its contents.
Many products no longer need refrigeration, though this isn’t absolute. If a product is interesting to you, but isn’t “heat-stable” be sure to keep it cool or your strains will die. The benefits of a heat-stable probiotic are simply convenience. It’s pretty nice to throw your supplement in your suitcase without worries of a cooling system.
Thick, airtight bottles help to eliminate moisture and keep bacterias from from death and mildew.
Look for non-GMO and preferably vegan products for easy delivery and digestion. Some products may use “healthy” fillers but avoid all synthetic preservatives or fillers; they aren’t necessary and with so many options, they are easy to avoid. This applies to the capsule itself, too. Be sure to look for pure, simple (one or two) ingredients in the capsule. And be sure that all strains advertised are listed clearly on the bottle – you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the various strains when selecting a design that works specifically for your body. Likewise, be sure that listed ingredients don’t contradict other medications. It’s always a good idea to go over your supplement with your physician before beginning a new program.
Most probiotics are advantageous for men and women. However, some contain ingredients meant to address gender-specific issues. For example, L. rhamnosus and L. reuteri are shown to assist with cystitis, thrush and bacterial vaginosis in women better than some other strains. Likewise, B. coagulans is proving to assist older men in combating rheumatoid arthritis, which males are more prone to with age. Understanding your body, and what it needs is imperative when selecting your probiotic.
Other Things Worth Thinking About
Diet, Age, and Stress
Beyond gender-specific probiotics, we each have personal health goals or health “issues” to consider when selecting our own just-right probiotic. For example, a diet high in fiber may accomplish the same goals a fiber strain of prebiotics offers. In fact, too much may not be beneficial. Be sure to consider your diet when choosing strains. And for those under the age of 18, B Longum – for example – may cause harm to the digestive tract. This bacteria works to protect against toxins in adult digestive tracts and may be too zealous for younger gut’s. Finally, listen to your mind/body connection, and take note of your own unique level of stress (or not). Some strains are known to assist more than others with the gut-brain connection and can help to reduce anxiety and depression as well as general stress.
Make sure you see an expiration date on your probiotic bottle! This information is crucial to your health and the potential benefits of your probiotic. You must know how long your bacteria strains will last! Some only last a week while others several months and still others a year. If a product has an “expected date of potency” rather than expiration date on its label, consider moving on and choosing another.
Q: What are some foods that contain probiotics?
It’s surprising just how many foods contain probiotics. These include milk, dark chocolate, sauerkraut, kefir, soy milk and Kombucha tea. The trick is to ensure your body receives enough probiotics to combat bad bacteria and harmful pathogens we now know to be related to diseases, immunity reduction, skin problems and even depression. Adding a supplement can provide consistent amounts of probiotics daily.
Q: Are there side effects with probiotics?
Ironically, the same issues you’re desiring to reduce may increase temporarily. These include bloating, more gas, tummy aches, constipation or diarrhea and lower energy. However, with a proper probiotic dose, you’ll enjoy the elimination of these uncomfortable symptoms within a week, usually.
Q: Can I let my child take a probiotic supplement?
Yes – but choose one intended for children. Some strains are not suitable for younger digestive tracts. Even infants can benefit from the introduction of a probiotic supplement. You’ll find powder forms in most stores that can be sprinkled over food or in drinks.
This is a topic that should really be discussed with the pediatrician before going ahead with any type of supplement. Use common sense, and don’t introduce anything that’s not absolutely necessary to your child’s health.
Q: Should I take my probiotic while I’m taking an antibiotic?
Antibiotics can wreak havoc on your gut flora, destroying colonies of good bacteria. This often leads to diarrhea. So taking a probiotic is a great idea during a round of antibiotics. You’ll help to balance your gut faster. Be sure to wait a couple of hours after taking your antibiotic before taking your probiotic, or the “good” bacteria will be eliminated before it can work! And continue to take your probiotic for a couple of weeks following your round of antibiotics to replenish your gut. Of course, check with your physician.
Q: When should I take my probiotic?
Most will feel more comfortable taking their probiotic with a meal. This also helps with delivery and digestion. It is important to select a probiotic that can bypass stomach acid, however. If your probiotic is not equipped for this, it is better to take about 45 minutes before your meal.
Q: What are some physical symptoms that’ll tell me if I need a probiotic?
You’ll want to discuss any concerning symptoms with your physician, first, but there are definite impacts associated with a lack of good bacteria in your gut. These range from acne and other skin problems to bad breath, chronic low energy, weight problems, frequent sickness, ulcers, inflammation and heightened menstrual or menopausal issues. A probiotic is an excellent way to naturally eliminate many health problems that are directly or indirectly related to the digestive tract. Research shows that the relationship between a healthy flora and a healthy body, in general, is connected.
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- Surprising benefits of probiotics, Healthline Newsletter, Apr 17, 2013 ,
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- Health benefits of probiotics: A review, ISRN Nutrition, Jan 21, 2016 ,
- Do I need probiotics?, MayoClinic Consumer Health, Nov 14, 2013 ,