How to Compare Probiotics

How to Compare Probiotics

 

(click here to view probiotic mix test)

If you are a parent, then you absolutely want a probiotic that is made in the USA for the reasons mentioned in my previous post.

Florastor Kids is made in France and Culturelle Kids packets are made in Italy. FloraTummys is made in the USA, has only 5 ingredients: 2 friendly bacterial strains, prebiotic (FOS), silica (natural mineral absorbs toxins in GI tract), and maltodextrin (powder). VSL 3 and Ultimate Flora are also made in the USA.

Florastor, a single strain yeast-based probiotic contains lactose and sugar which can worsen diarrhea in kids, and it’s artificially flavored. Florastor does not contain lactobacillus or bifidobacterium strains and does not contain a prebiotic. The advantages include individual packets and can be given at the same time with antibiotics.

Probiotics with lactobacillus and bifidobacterium including FloraTummys should be given 1-3 hours before or after the antibiotics.

Culturelle although claims “sugar-free” contains sucrose. Last time I checked, sucrose is sugar. I learned that if a product contains less than a certain amount of sucrose, the company can claim, “sugar-free.” Culturelle is a single strain probiotic. Studies show that combination of probiotics with both lactobacillus and bifidobacterium can be more beneficial for optimal digestive health.

VSL #3 Powder Packets require a prescription. This too is a marketing ploy, like refrigerated probiotics claiming better potency. VSL’s 450 billion bacteria does not mean better efficacy and is 4 x the cost of other products.

Top Adult Probiotics Comparison

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The top three branded adult probiotics, Align, Culturelle, and Florastor are single strain probiotics and two of them are made overseas. Studies show the combination of lactobacillus and bifidobacterium can mean better digestive health.* So why are these three brands so popular? They were the first probiotics on the market and spend a lot of money on advertising. Align is made by Proctor & Gamble, a 71 billion dollar company. What most people don’t realize is that the smaller companies have to produce better products in order to compete ―How ironic.

Align has only one probiotic strain, only 1 billion live bacteria and is made in Europe, but yet one of the top selling probiotics for adults.

Culturelle: Although has a lot of check marks above, they are also a single strain probiotic. If Culturelle contained bifidobacterium I would rank it a top probiotic.

Florastor is one of the top selling and recommended probiotics, but yet has the fewest check marks. Why? Because it has been around for > 50 years and health professionals are familiar with it. It absolutely does not make it a quality probiotic. Florastor is a single strain probiotic made in France. Their packaging does not provide the number of live strains. Since their recommended dose is two capsules daily, I calculated the daily cost at $1.46 or $0.73 per capsule. The only advantage of this product is the individually packaged capsules which is important for the survival of the strains.

FloraTummys Adult Capsules NOW AVAILABLE: contains 4 probiotics strains, 12 billion live bacteria, Non-Dairy, Gluten & Sugar-Free, Free of Food Allergens and made in the USA.

Garden of Life Primal Defense is made in the USA, contains a combination of lactobacillus, bifidobacterium, saccharomyces , and is gluten free. It also has a lot of positive reviews on Amazon.com, however, “soil-based” probiotics are new and not well studied. The traditional strains from human flora or dairy have been studied for over a century. Soil based probiotics are not the sam live bacteria that normally exist in our gut. I was a little turned off by the misleading “15 billion” cells on the front package of the box. You need to take 3 capsules to get 15 billion, so each capsule has only 5 billion cells. There are however 90 capsules per bottle.

Nordic Naturals probiotic was one of the first I actually used myself. They had probiotic encapsulated in omega 3 fish oil, but they discontinued it. Their website shows, that all their liquid, soft gel, and gummie products are encapsulated and bottled in the USA, but I still don’t know where their adult probiotics are made. Nordic Natural probiotic is free of food allergens and non-GMO. If you are looking for an Omega 3 Fish oil, I would definitely consider Nordic Naturals.

There are not many adult probiotics with a check mark next to each criteria above, until we launch FloraTummys Adult Capsules in 2017. Either way, I would try different brands and see what works for you while looking for the most check marks.

 

 

For a 5-Day Free Trial of FloraTummys Sprinkle Powder Packets or Capsules click here.

 

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