A probiotic may have been recommended to you by your doctor or dietitian. That seemingly simple suggestion becomes much more complicated when visiting the pharmacy or supplement aisle to actually pick out a probiotic. If you've done this before, you know that there are literally dozens of options to choose from.
How are you ever supposed to choose?!
Today, I'm breaking down a few simple tips for choosing a great probiotic.
1. Aim for multiple strains of friendly bacteria. You'll find this listed on the back of the bottle on the "supplement facts" panel. I prefer 5-10 different bacteria strains to be listed.
2. If you're new to probiotics, consider starting slow. I often recommend probiotics with only 5 billion CFU, or colony forming units, when just starting out with a probiotic. Why? Probiotics can cause mild GI upset for some people. If this lasts more than a few days to a week, stop the probiotic and consult your dietitian, who can help you modify your approach. However, if the 5 billion CFU are well tolerated, you can quickly double your dose to 10 billion CFU and depending on your situation, it may be appropriate to choose a higher strength probiotic at your next refill.
3. Aim for supplements that contain minimal fillers, which will be listed in the "other ingredients" section of the supplement label. In some people, certain fillers can actually be the cause for the mild GI upset I mentioned before. Some good over the counter brands with minimal fillers that are available in most supplement aisles, include NOW Foods and Jarrow Formulas.
For those of you who still find choosing a probiotic to be overwhelming, here are a few of our favorite products for easy reference.
*This post contains affiliate links for your convenience. Klaire Labs products are professional grade and available through our Fullscript dispensary. A free account is required to order from Fullscript.