Probiotics have been up and coming in the last few years as more has been discovered about the microbiome. There are foods that provide good bacteria for our microbiome, specifically fermented foods such as kimchi, tempeh, yogurt, and sauerkraut, and there are supplements that also support a healthy gut.
When I started using probiotics, I noticed a difference in sweet cravings. Taking a daily probiotic seems to keep my cravings in check. Instead of needing to eat chocolate throughout the day, I didn’t need it at all. The first probiotic that I used was Renew Life Ultimate Flora. Back then, I knew little about the strains, but I am learning more and more about the purpose of the strains in different probiotics.
Guidelines for probiotics are to look for a probiotic with at least 30 billion cultures and 7 strains.
The two most common strains are Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus. Different strains have different purposes including Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus reuteri, and Saccharomyces boulardii (yeast) which are a good supplement to give children on antibiotics or suffering from loose stools typically as a side effect from antiobiotics. Another common ailment, yeast growth or candida, can be supported with the strains L. rhamnosus and L. reuteri as well. When looking for a probiotic, it depends on who will be taking it, and what the goal is. For treating yeast overgrowth and balancing out your gut, you can start with one that contains the basic strains Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus.
BRANDS to check out
The Renew Life Ultimate Flora line has done well for me. Here is a list of the strains contained in this brand.
I have also used Theralac TruFlora by Master Supplements. This supplement has also been effective.
I most recently tried Love Bug Probiotics. The company sent me a sample of the three kinds below to try. I love the packaging and mission, thought process put into each probiotic, blue glass bottles and the wholesome ingredients. A consumer will be able to tell that the creator of this line, Ashley, did the research and has thought about all aspects of creating these probiotics. You can easily pick out the probiotic that you need from the name.
Here are a few:
Here’s the Skinny: Their general probiotic to innoculate the microbiome with good bacteria.
Yeast is a Beast: Specifically designed for women, with strains carefully selected to promote urinary tract health. Includes Cran-Gyn™ (Cranberry Extract) additive which helps squelch growth of bad bacteria from taking hold.
Colds Suck: Great to take when you are coming down with something. This one is formulated to boost immunity!
These probiotics are also created to cross the stomach barrier easily.
With this brand, I would love to see more live cultures, and found that I needed to take more than one daily to see a difference, but I would recommend giving them a try if you are just starting out with a probiotic for the first time! I ordered the children’s and infant’s probiotics and will report back on these! Do you take a probiotic? Which brand is your tried and true one?