Taking probiotics is something I have made part of my daily ritual for many years. Probiotics are sometimes called "good bacteria" and my dietitian recommended it for some of the bulking phases I went through as I was struggling to process all the extra carbs and protein.
One problem we encountered with some clients who started taking these supplements was that a lot of them reported no benefits at all. People have been using probiotics trying to force weight loss, but is it a myth or you can actually initiate weight loss?
After checking with our dietitian, we learned that there are too many probiotics that don’t contain enough live cultures to replicate in your gut, and also, no, you can’t force weight loss by just taking probiotics, or at least, not effectively.
So, we teamed up with some clients to find the best probiotic supplements.
Here’s what we found.
Our Top Probiotics
1 - 1MD Complete Probiotics Platinum (Editor's Choice)
After three months of testing, we concluded that the best probiotics were available in this 1MD product.
It claims to contain at least 51 billion colony forming units (CFU) using 11 of the more important strains, including lactobacillus rhamnosus. We also did the milk test (more on this later) to confirm that the probiotics can reproduce once exposed to nutrients.
We also liked the added prebiotic fiber that may help to feed the good bacteria as soon as they are released in your gut.
We also recommend you check out other recommended prebiotic supplements.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 51 billion
- Claims to use 11 different strains, and all of them provides a more diverse reaction
- Positive comments about the slow-release capsules
- Contains some added fiber to further help your digestion
- Good bulk-order and subscription offers
- It’s not the cheapest option available
We’ll admit that it’s not the cheapest supplement, but all the reviews seem to point out that it should provide positive effects.
2 - Live Conscious Pro-45 Live Probiotics
Another one of the stronger options for athletes on a high-calorie diet is this Live Conscious (formerly known as Livewell) product.
The 11 strains claim to have been chosen to help deal with some of the more common stomach issues, including IBS and diarrhea.
These probiotics could also help if you’ve had to take a strong or longer course of antibiotics due to illness.
We also concluded that the slow-release capsule seems to be working well as there are no negative comments about it causing sudden gas.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 45 billion
- Provides 11 strains of bacteria for a broader range
- Capsules dissolve slowly to release the bacteria over time
- Includes a small boost of prebiotic fiber as well
- Some reports of bloating and gas
A few online reviews said that they tended to get a bit of bloating when this was taken with certain foods.
3 - Ora Organic Vegan Probiotics with Prebiotics Capsules
Anyone with a more sensitive stomach may want to have more flexibility with a lower dose. Ora Organic may fill that gap by providing 16 billion CFU in each serving.
We also found that the capsules were smaller, which made them a lot easier to swallow.
For any of our vegan readers, you’ll be glad to see the vegan certificate on the label, and we have had positive comments from clients that it helped them deal with stomach issues, including diarrhea and IBS .
- Amount Of Probiotics: 16 billion
- Claims to add some prebiotics as well for added gut balance
- The capsules are small enough to make them easy to swallow
- Suitable for vegans as well
- Uses only six strains of bacteria
The downside with this product is that it only covers six strains of bacteria, so it might not fix all your digestive issues.
4 - Culturelle Daily Probiotic
Many doctors will recommend probiotics for women and men who may need to take antibiotics for a bad infection .
But most probiotic products might not contain a strong dose of this one strain because they focus more on a wide variety of good bacteria.
Culturelle could help in this situation as it only contains the lactobacillus rhamnosus strain.
This might also be a suitable option if you tend to get gas with some of these products, as people seem to be positively commenting about how it may have easing effects.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 10 billion
- Limited to only lactobacillus rhamnosus
- Some added prebiotic fiber may also help with digestion issues
- May work well for people taking antibiotics
- Doesn’t seem to cause any gas or bloating
These probiotics may not be suitable for everyone as the supplement is limited to just one strain of bacteria.
5 - Garden of Life RAW Probiotics
Garden of Life is one of the products that might need to be considered by people who have had some serious gut flora issues. It claims to provide 32 probiotic strains with a live culture of 85 billion units.
Garden of Life probiotics may also suit women in particular as the combination and concentration of the various probiotics claim to have been scientifically assessed for female needs.
There are also some added vitamins and minerals that may be supportive of your immune system and overall gut health.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 85 billion
- Specifically formulated for women
- One of the broadest ranges with 32 probiotic strains
- Added vitamin and mineral blend may provide a health boost
- You may want to store this in the refrigerator
Just keep in mind that you will need to store this in a cold place to ensure that the cultures don’t die.
6 - Renew Life Adult Probiotic
Renew Life has created a supplement that may be of interest to people over 50, as this one has been formulated with strains that you might be lacking due to natural aging.
Renew Life provides a lower number of units than most of the above, but for some folks, that may help to better deal with stomach issues like cramping, diarrhea, and the effects of IBS.
We also noted that it’s one of the few products that may not need to be stored in a cold place, but we’d still advise keeping it out of direct sunlight and away from heat sources.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 30 billion
- Most suitable for people over 50
- Tablets dissolve slowly in the gut to avoid bloating
- Doesn’t require storing in the refrigerator
- The capsules are a bit large so try breaking them up
The only downside is that we found the capsules might seem a bit large to swallow.
7 - Klaire Labs Ther-Biotic Complete Probiotic
This is another supplement that claims to support immune health in a gentle way by not overloading your stomach with bacteria. It still contains 12 different strains but in a slightly lower concentration.
The company also claims to always ship the product in a cool pack to avoid the cultures from dying whole in transit.
It also has some prebiotic fiber that may be beneficial if your food is slightly lacking in fiber to feed your gut flora.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 25 billion
- Ships in an insulated pack to avoid losing some of the cultures
- Added prebiotic fiber to help feed the good bacteria
- A broad range of 12 different strains
- You will have to store it in a cool place to avoid losing the live cultures
Just make sure you keep it cold as soon as it arrives as the cultures seem to be sensitive to temperature fluctuations.
8 - INNATE Response Formulas
These probiotics can help people who regularly suffer from an upset stomach after eating certain types of foods.
It claims to help by slowly building up and strengthening your gut flora so that certain digestive issues are less likely to disrupt your day.
The shipment should arrive fast with a package that includes a cool pack to avoid losing any of the potency.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 20 billion
- Claims to contain 14 probiotic strains for a more balanced gut flora
- Capsules are small enough to be easy to swallow
- Positive comments about the shipment including a cold gel pack
- Needs to be stored cold to retain potency
Just make sure to keep it refrigerated as the cultures seem to be sensitive to heat.
9 - Advanced Naturals Ultimate Floramax
The final probiotic supplement that we’d like to recommend is another stronger dose one.
With 50 billion units, this probiotic supplement should be suitable for most stomach issues that may be down to an imbalance in your gut bacteria.
It also doesn’t seem to need refrigeration, but it’s still best to keep the product in a cool and dark place.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 50 billion
- Uses a good range of 10 probiotics for an overall boost
- Claims to help with common stomach discomforts
- Doesn’t require refrigeration, but still aim to keep it out of the heat
- Some added prebiotic fiber would be helpful
The main thing we were missing for a product in this price range is some prebiotic fiber to support culture growth.
10 - LyfeFuel Super Probiotic
This LyfeFuel is one of the strongest probiotic supplement that we recommend if you have a sensitive stomach. We received positive feedback from clients who had some stomach issues, so the slower dissolving capsules seem to be working.
We also didn’t see any negative comments about bloating or gas when they are taken with various foods.
If anything, we got some feedback that it may actually help to avoid constipation and other stomach conditions.
- Amount Of Probiotics: 50 billion
- Claims to be the most suitable option for people with a sensitive stomach
- Includes 12 strains of bacteria for broader digestive health
- Positive comments that it doesn’t seem to cause bloating
- Shipping is only free on bulk orders
The only negative we found with this one is that you need to bulk-order if you want to get free shipping, which isn’t the case with most others.
1 - Types Of Probiotics
So, I’m not going to get into the biological technicalities here, but it’s important to understand that your gut is home to many different bacteria.
A lot of people tend to jump to the conclusion that probiotic supplements with the largest number of strains automatically makes them a better choice .
“Within those trillions of gut bacteria are about 1,000 different species, represented by some 5,000 distinct bacterial strains.”
- Harvard Health Publishing
While some people with more serious gut flora issues may need such a product, this isn’t the case for the majority of people who are just looking for a bit of a health boost.
By focusing on a smaller set of probiotics, you should be able to cover the more important ones for digesting food.
2 - Prebiotics Vs. Probiotics
Taking probiotics will introduce new beneficial bacteria cultures to your gut, but you’ll also need to feed them in order for them to flourish and replicate .
That’s why you’ll be able to find that some products include a small amount of prebiotic fiber to give the new bacteria an immediate boost once released.
This could make quite a difference to your gut health, as we did encounter some supplements that just didn’t seem to be as effective.
Our dietitian pointed out that you might be able to take a smaller size bacterial culture if it was combined with the right nutrition for the bacteria to thrive on.
3 - Assessing The Quality
This was an interesting conversation we had with a nutritionist.
Apparently, there are hundreds of probiotic supplements that may have included living cultures at some stage.
But by the time they hit your stomach, they have broken down so much that they simply cannot create much of a difference.
The important thing to look out for is the number of colony-forming units. You’ll see this marked as something like 20 billion CFU.
And you could test the potency of different products by adding them to a small glass of milk and seeing whether it curdles .
4 - Choosing For Your Goals
If you’re dealing with serious health conditions, then it’s always best to talk to your doctor before making a final supplement choice.
While taking probiotics is generally a good idea for anyone with health issues, there are certain types that might be more suitable to boost your gut and immune system.
One way they may boost your gut and the immune system is by effectively dealing with harmful microorganisms and pathogens before they are absorbed by your digestive system .
5 - Feeding The Right Bacteria
Many people are taking some probiotic supplements and then still wonder why they have weight issues and regular stomach problems.
The problem is that any probiotic supplement can only do so much. If you’re still eating foods that are feeding the bad bacteria, then you won’t solve these problems.
To feed the good bacteria and create a better gut flora balance, you have to make sure you eat less processed foods and a more diverse range of raw foods.
Also, try to get more fiber into your diet as this should feed your new probiotic arrivals.
6 - Other Helpful Ingredients
Once you’ve taken steps to improve your gut health through probiotics, it’s time to look at some other vitamins and minerals that might help to improve symptoms of gut problems.
Some products include added immunity boosters, and this is one way to try and get multiple benefits from one product rather than having to find ones you can stack.
Who Should Take Probiotics?
Most people should consider taking probiotics, even on an occasional basis. It’s difficult to keep your gut flora in balance, and if you suffer from occasional digestive discomfort, then it might be something easily solved with supplements.
Is There a Downside to Probiotics?
No, for most people, there isn’t a downside to probiotics. Some people might feel a little bit of gas as the new microorganisms start to thrive. If you have any underlying bowel conditions, then it would be best to talk to your doctor first.
How Long Should You Stay on Probiotics?
You should stay on probiotics for at least four weeks. This is a generally recommended time to allow the new bacterial colonies to grow enough to rebalance your gut flora. This may also depend on the potency of the product.
Should You Take Probiotics in the Morning or at Night?
You should take probiotics shortly after you eat your breakfast. This may provide the right environment for the bacteria to thrive and support you throughout the day. If you suffer from an upset stomach at night time, then you could take your probiotic supplement just before you go to bed.
Which Probiotics Is Best?
After several months of testing and reading hundreds of customer reviews trying to find the best probiotic, we came to the conclusion that the best probiotic supplement would be 1MD Platinum.
It just seems to have the right combination and a large enough amount of CFUs to allow for many types of bowel issues and symptoms to be resolved.
We’ve seen it successfully used with high-performance athletes who need some support for more effective digestion of large volumes of food.
Order your probiotic supplement today, and then let us know on social media how well it works for you.