With so many different probiotic supplements on the market providing different amounts and strains, how do you know which provides the best quality and is right for you? And how do probiotic drinks, like kombuchas, compare? How many probiotic cells do they contain, do they offer the same benefits as a supplement — and how do they taste?
If you are taking a probiotic to help with a specific condition, it is important that you first select a probiotic that provides the specific bacteria or yeast shown to help with your condition, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), abdominal pain, colic in infants, infections, diarrhea, cold and flu, and even high cholesterol, anxiety, mania, dandruff, and weight control. Our report explains the clinical evidence and what to look for to suit your needs.
And, you'll need to know if the product contains its listed amount of viable (living) probiotic organisms. While our tests identified many high quality probiotic supplements, we also found huge differences in the number of viable cells products provided in a daily serving -- from just 100 million to 1.8 trillion!
We also found one product for pets contained just 5.3% of its listed number of cells
Among the probiotic supplements that passed our laboratory tests, provided good amounts of viable cells and were well priced, we selected our Top Picks
, including products for digestive health, products for women children, pets and oral health.
We also selected a Top Pick
among probiotic-containing drinks which also provided a good amount of viable cells, passed our tests of quality and was judged favorably in our taste tests.
You must be a ConsumerLab.com member to get the full test results along with ConsumerLab.com's Top Picks
and ConsumerTips on how to choose and use probiotic supplements and drinks. You'll get results for 38 probiotic supplements (including three for pets): 21 selected by ConsumerLab.com and 17 others that passed the same testing in our voluntary Quality Certification Program. You'll also get results for three probiotic-containing drinks, including two kombuchas. In our review, you'll learn:
- ConsumerLab.com's Top Picks for probiotic supplements, kombuchas and probiotic drinks based on quality, and value
- Which probiotics supplements, kombuchas and probiotic drinks passed or failed our tests and how many viable cells they contained
- Which probiotic bacteria or yeasts have been shown effective for treating or preventing specific conditions, and at what dose. These microorganisms include Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus GG, Bifidobacterium infantis, Saccharomyces boulardii, and many others
- Price comparisons of probiotics, kombuchas and probiotic drinks
- Ingredient comparisons and what to look out for on probiotic labels
- What prebiotics (often included in probiotics) can and cannot do, and how to get them from supplements and foods
- Tips on how to use probiotics — and store them to last longer
- Concerns, cautions, and potential side effects of probiotics and probiotic-containing drinks -- including concerns for people with milk allergies