Which Probiotic is Right for You?
By Diana Milling • September 14, 2016
Choosing between the numerous brands of probiotics available on the market can certainly be
overwhelming and at times, confusing. It’s important to have some basic knowledge about the various benefits and qualities of probiotics before making the best selection for you or your family.
Here is a brief overview of some of the most beneficial and common strains used in most probiotics:
- Lactobacillus acidophilus: this is one of more common strains found in most probiotics. It has a high ability to colonize on the walls of the small intestine. It aids in the digestion of dairy by producing lactase, an enzyme that breaks down the sugar in milk (lactose intolerant individuals lack this) Relieves gas and bloating and can improve IBS/IBD symptoms. Helps to lower cholesterol levels.
- Lactobacillus brevis: helps to boost the immune system by increasing natural killer cells, can help maintain healthy gums and reduce tooth decay in the oral cavity, has anti-microbial activity and can protect against h. pylori.
- Lactobacillus bulgaricus: often found in food products such as yogurt and swiss cheese. Helps to maintain the proper pH in the small intestine to keep harmful bacteria from multiplying. Helps to heal intestinal permeability and control dyspepsia.
- Lactobacillus casei: naturally found in raw cow’s milk and colostrum. Improves immunity, decreases allergy symptoms, lowers cholesterol and triglyceride levels, enhances nutrient absorption and decreases vaginosis symptoms.
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus: known to help prevent “traveler’s diarrhea”. Can help to ease symptoms of anxiety and depression. Assist with weight loss and diabetes prevention. May be just as helpful as an antibiotic in treating UTI’s and respiratory infections.
- Bacillus coagulans: spore forming lactic acid bacterium that survives heat and stomach acid.
- Beneficial for combating excessive growth of “bad” bacteria – generally seen in IBS, IBD, h. Pylori, C. difficile
- Bacillus subtilis: known as a soil organism, beneficial for intestinal immune-system development. Inhibits growth of foodborne pathogens such as salmonella.
- Bifidobacterium bifidum: the most common probiotic bacteria that can be found in humans.
- Extremely beneficial for IBD as it is found in the colon and lower small intestine. Also found in breast milk, so it’s great for infants. Found in the mucosa of the healthy vaginal wall. Excellent for fighting yeast overgrowth as it competes with candida. Beneficial for acute diarrhea, promotion of healthy infant microflora, decreases allergies.
- Bifidobacterium breve: helpful in the treatment of childhood functional constipation, decreases symptoms of IBS and inhibits overgrowth of E. Coli.
- Bifidobacterium infantis: provides relief for IBS symptoms as the acids produced by B. infantis can help to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the colon.
- Saccharomyces boulardii: has shown to be effective for IBD patents (both Crohn’s and Ulcerative colitis). S. boulardii has been tested for efficacy in other types of GI conditions such as C. difficile, H. pylori and antibiotic-associated diarrhea.
It is important to search for a product that has the broadest range of probiotics. It’s also a good idea to alternate between different strains and species depending on your need.
Below are some of the probiotics we recommend at Lakeside Natural Medicine. We have done thorough research to ensure we offer trusted, professional grade probiotics.
- Genestra Brands by Seroyal – all offer a wide range of benefits and various uses. Types of Genestra probiotics include: HMF Intensive, HMF Replenish, HMF Neuro, HMF Forte, Children’s HMF Natogen
- Klaire Labs – Lactoprime, good for those that may have dietary restrictions, Saccharomyces boulardii
As with any supplement, it’s important that the product you choose is free of chemicals, fillers and other ingredients. The probiotic you choose should have a listing of all potential irritants it is free of in order to offer you a high quality probiotic. Under the guidance of your naturopathic doctor this process can be much less complicated and you will be on your way to a healthy GI tract!
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Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.
Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioners with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health program.