0 Comments | Jun 28, 2011

What Makes A Superior Probiotic?

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In this article we set up four points that you should consider when purchasing a probiotic supplement. There is a great deal of variance between products availability on the market so it’s important to be careful. Otherwise you may end up with a product that doesn’t provide you with the right strains of bacteria in the right quantities to confirm a positive health benefit. So let’s get started on the four points drawn from information provided by

  1. It makes sense to choose a multiple strain probiotic. This is because different strains of bacteria reside in different parts of the gastrointestinal tract. Look in particular for products that contain Lactobacillus and the Bifidobacterium species as these are the most widely researched and also occur naturally in the gut.
  2. Ideally you will find information about the particular strain of bacteria being provided on the label and not just the species.  So for example Lactobacillus Acidophilus LAT11.  This is important because specific health benefits can only be linked to particular strains (as identified by the LAT11 in the previous example). In other words not all strains of a particular bacterial species (such as Acidophilus) will improve intestinal health and digestive function, only certain ones will.
  3. You should make sure that you are getting a high culture count. Unlike other nutritional supplements this isn’t measured in milligrams but as Colony Forming Units or CFU’s. As we have trillions of bacteria in our body you’ll need at least 1 billion CFU’s per dose.  This should be measured at the time of expiry and not at the time of manufacture.
  4. Look for an effective delivery system – see this probiotic pearl review for more details. In order to get to the lower gastrointestinal tract the probiotic bacteria have to pass through the stomach. Here they can become easily damaged by stomach acids and pancreatic bile so look for products where the probiotic is protected by a special capsule or “pearl”.

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