Probiotics: Five Core Species

It’s overwhelming how many probiotics are now available today, and the number of different combinations available as nutritional supplements at health food stores, and even added to foods, is growing. There are myriad different species of bacteria that make up the human microbiome, but science has identified some major players, and aggressively studied these in both animals and humans. As such, I’ll focus on this core group of probiotic species.

To make the task of finding and purchasing the right formulas as easy as possible, I’ve simplified my recommendation to just 5 core species that are widely available: Lactobaccilus plantarum, Lactobaccilus acidophilus, Lactobaccilus brevis, Bifidobacterium lactis and Bifidobacterium longum. Different strains provide different benefits, but these are the ones that will support your body’s biology by doing the very things we’ve been discussing since the beginning of the book when it comes to sustaining brain health.

  • Lactobaccilus plantarum: Found in kimchi, sauerkraut, and other cultured vegetables, this bug is one of the most beneficial bacteria in your body. It survives in the stomach for a long time and performs many functions that help regulate immunity and control inflammation in the gut. It also helps fortify the gut lining, fending off potential invaders that might compromise the intestinal wall and sneak into the bloodstream. In fact, L. plantarum’s beneficial impact on the gut lining is perhaps its most important attribute, for it reduces gut permeability, thereby reducing the associated risks for leaky gut—including an increased risk for virtually every brain disorder. Moreover, L. plantarum can quickly digest protein, and this has the ultimate effect of preventing food allergies and even treating such allergies when they arise. Its been shown in experimental animal studies to protect engineered mice from having clinical symptoms of multiple sclerosis and even reduce the inflammatory response typical of that condition. Finally, L. plantarum has an uncanny ability to absorb and maintain important nutrients such as brain-friendly omega- 3 fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants. All of these actions make L. plantarum essential for fighting infection and taking control of any pathogenic bacteria.
  • Lactobaccilus acidophilus: L. acidophilus is the darling of fermented dairy products, including yogurt. It keeps the balance of good vs. bad bacteria in check and in doing so, aids your immune system. In women, it helps to curb the growth of Candida albicans, a fungus that can cause yeast infections. L. acidophilus has also gained fame for its ability to help maintain cholesterol levels. In the small intestine, L. acidophilus produces many beneficial substances that combat pathogenic microbes, including acidolphilin, acidolin, bacteriocin, and lactocidin.
  • Lactobaccilus brevis: Sauerkraut and pickles owe a lot of their benefits to this bug, which improves immune function by increasing cellular immunity and even enhancing killer T cell activity. It’s so effective in combating vaginosis, a common bacterial infection of the vagina, that it’s added to pharmaceuticals used to treat it. L. brevis also acts to inhibit the effects of certain gut pathogens. Perhaps best of all, it has been shown to increase levels of that all-star brain growth hormone BDNF.
  • Bifidobacterium lactis (also called B. animalis): Fermented milk products like yogurt contain this gem, which is well documented to have a powerful effect on preventing digestive ills and boosting immunity. It’s also known to be helpful in knocking out food-born pathogens like salmonella, which causes diarrhea.
  • Bifidobacterium longum: Just one of the 32 species that belong to the genus bifidobacterium, this is one of the first bugs that colonize our bodies at birth. It has been associated with improving lactose tolerance and preventing diarrhea, food allergies, and the proliferation of pathogens. It’s also known to have antioxidant properties as well as the ability to scavenge free radicals. In laboratory mice, B. longum has been shown to reduce anxiety. Like L. acidophilus, B. longum also helps maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
  • This is fascinating, helpful, lifesaving and compelling. I am so grateful that you always seem to start with foods which contain different healthy, healing elements. After reading your Core 4 supplements, I bought a Probiotic supplement. It only contains two of the five core probiotics you mention here. Is there a Probiotic supplement that you are aware of which includes all five? As a mental health professional, I am particularly fascinated that Bifidobacterium longum has been shown to reduce anxiety in lab mice. I deal with clients with long standing anxiety, depression and trauma — so anything that can help reverse the hold is worth trying. Blessings and gratitude — Susan Rau Stocker

    • Pamela Causgrove

      Natural Factors Ultimate Probiotic 12/12 Formula contains all of these strains + more.

      • Thanks Pamela, that’s what I needed to know.
        I’m going to start with that
        but will move to the home-made fermented foods as soon as I can. (Making the home-made stuff would be a great local business for those who are so inclined!) .

      • Vicky Garcia

        Hi Pamela,

        I am looking for a probiotic with the 5 strains that Dr. P recommends, and I checked Natural Factors Ultimate Probiotic 12/12 Formula by Dr. Michael Murray, but I did not see lactobacillus brevis in its list. Could you be referring to a different probiotic than the one than what I saw? Thanks!

        • Pamela Causgrove

          You’re right, Vicky. It has Lactobacillus breve instead of Lactobacillus brevis. I missed that.

    • Carol Lambert

      Check out BioProsper Labs:

      Nexabiotic Advanced Multi-Probiotic. I believe it has all five strains plus eighteen additional strains.

      • Deborah Scoza Levasseur

        I found all of the Probiotics at Amazon. Here is the link:
        Hope this helps someone. They are also on Vitacost but were cheaper on Amazon.

        • Vicky Garcia

          Deborah, have you tried ordering these probiotics through amazon and did you have luck getting them mailed to you in an ice pack? I asked amazon if they mailed this in an icepack and they told me they did, but it came without an ice pack. I think there are also different sellers selling through amazon, and I am wondering if you had any luck getting a seller to mail this to you cold. mails in an ice pack but you pay $20.00 more. Any help on this would be great! Otherwise, ordering this during the winter might be the way to go.

          • Deborah Scoza Levasseur

            I ordered these with no problem and the company I ordered from did ship on ice. iherb has always sold probiotics that they do ship on ice. I have ordered from them before with a different Garden of Life Probiotic. The service is good.

          • Vicky Garcia

            Thanks for your input!

        • Ishrafa Ulianov

          Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

        • John
          • Deborah Scoza Levasseur

            Thank you for sharing this information!

      • Vicky Garcia

        Thanks! Good to know!

  • Lawrence brown

    Curious to know if all these guys, L Plantarum, L. acidolphilus, L. Brevis, B.Lactis and B.longum all play well together. Is there a commonality among them that is beneficial to us and at the same time allows them to cohabit the gut or human biome? Are some combinations uniquely beneficial to some while pathogenic to others? Thanks

    • Kathy

      You just have to look around the internet for probiotics with all five of the probiotics mentioned. One is Dr. Stephen Langer’s 16 Strain Probiotic. It is available for a good price on Swanson Vitamins – occasionally on sale for half-price. Most probiotics can be taken with meals, occasionally only between meals. Just read the directions on the bottle. Taking more than one would not be harmful. It is always best to take prebiotics along with probiotics. My favorites are Larch Arabinogalactan and Inulin. Both inexpensive and found on the internet. Resistant starch is also great for the gut – google for more info. I get mine from Barry Farms in the form of plantain flour.

  • Makita

    Susan, not sure if these product are the ones you are looking for:
    Life Extension, Bifido GI Balance, 60 Veggie Caps. OR
    Jarrow Formulas, Jarro-Dophilus EPS, 60 Veggie Caps
    found both of these at

  • melissa

    same question as susan, is there 1 that contains all 5 species? also, on average how much should one be taking of each of these?

    • Jennifer

      MegaFoods MegaFlora Plus contains all 5 of these, and 9 more. I have been taking it for over a year and have had great results and no adverse reactions.

  • Tom Malcolm

    Dr. Perlmutter, do you offer a product yet for these probiotics? If no, when?



    • Giora Zeevy

      Email me to and I I’ll show you a great probiotic that have 4 out of those 5 and another one that is not here.. The cool think is that it has the taste of root beer….
      Giora Zeevy
      Certified Health Watch

  • Dianne C

    I make my own milk kefir and have read that it contains many of the required probiotics necessary for good gut health. Anyone know if it contains all 5 of these. I used to take different probiotics for reflux but really like my kefir much bette.

  • Maria B

    After some searching, it looks like the brand Garden of Life contains these five probiotics plus more. I have not used this brand yet so I can’t speak to it’s effectiveness.

  • lara

    thank you so much for this. Are there some types we should avoid like Lactobacillus Casei , bugaricus, reuteri i.e. Are there some strains that are not helpful

  • Natchezman

    I have found only one product that contains all five. L. Brevis seemed the most often excluded. Garden of Life had all five plus. No info as to relative amounts of each. Just started with the product no identifiable results, except possibly less flatulence.

  • lynette mayo

    I am confused ! do we also have to feed the Probiotics, with Prebiotics? afterwords? is there any specific Probiotic to supplement this, for damaged gut flora in babyhood ?

  • CJ Katz

    It would be helpful to have a list of recommended probiotic brands that contain the combination of strains recommended above. Also, what are the recommended amounts one should be taking of each strain?

    • Vicky Garcia

      Hi CJ,

      Just wondering if you have found a list of probiotic brands that have the 5 strains which Dr. P recommends. If so, could you share it with me? Thanks!

      • CJ Katz

        Hi Vicky. I’m sorry but I never rec’d a reply to my query. What I did was take his list and I stood in the health food store for about 1/2 an hour finding one that had the most bacteria he recommended. I buy the live strains that are sold cold. Not the ones on the shelf.

        • Vicky Garcia

          Hi CJ,

          Thanks for getting back to me. I read all the comments and one thanked Dr. P for Garden of Life Probiotics, so I am going with that one. It has all the 5 recommendations and it also has to be refrigerated, so you might want to check that out if you are still looking. Thanks again!

      • Joan Frisch

        Mother Earth Stores in Ft Myers Fl. carries Garden of Earth products which include all the probiotics. They are refrigerated.

  • Lori

    I have been using Dr. Mercola’s Complete Probiotics which contain all 5 plus a few others, and I have been taking them for over a year and I feel great with them

  • Jane

    Is it better to take the probiotics on an empty stomach or with food? And if it is best taken on an empty stomach how long should one wait before eating food?

    • Karen Edscorn Board

      The probiotics I just bought said it doesn’t matter whether an empty stomach or with food. I did read somewhere that if you’re on antibiotics, there should be a 2 hour gap (or more) between the antibiotic dose and the probiotic.

      • disqus_pJWDSemBVz

        This is true, confirmed by my Naturopathic doctor.

      • Karen Edscorn Board

        correction – I just linked to another page by Dr. Perimutter – he says probiotics should be taken on empty stomach (so less stomach acid) and avoid taking with chlorinated (i.e. tap) water.

        • Jean Oswald

          I’ve also read to take them on an empty stomach; works very well for me before sleep and first thing in the morning Mother Nature sends me to the bathroom 🙂
          FYI… as a Holistic Nurse I would advise holding off on probiotics until finishing any course of antibiotics. Am I missing something?

          • David

            Yes! The antibiotics are going to kill off many of the bacteria in your gut, good and bad. These bacteria are the main method of fighting off pathogens. If there are no bacteria there, the pathogens get a free hand to colonise and do damage. Look up Clostridium DIfficile for an example of a serious problem caused by overuse of antibiotics. I recall reading that 38000 people died one year in the US from C Difficile, mostly obtained in hospitals.

            Taking probiotics a couple of hours after the antibiotics puts some back to continue their good work until the next round of antibiotics wipes them out again. One common probiotic species, Saccharomyces Boulardii, is actually a yeast, and is not affected by antibiotics. This one is especially useful to take if using antibiotics as it will maintain its population. It has been proven to control C Difficile.

          • Jean Oswald

            Oh I remember C Diff very well from my years at the bedside! I appreciate your description here.. I didn’t think of the pathogens colonizing but knew the good flora from probiotics would.. good information. Thanks!

      • Vicky Garcia

        I am taking probiotics that Dr. Perlmutter formulated–Garden of Life Dr. Recommended Probiotics, “Mood +” and on the box under suggested use, it says “May be taken with our without food.”

    • getitin

      I have heard that you want to take it on an empty stomach because the stomach is less acidic at this time and they are more likely to survive until they get to the intestines. This is supposed to save money so you don’t have to buy enteric coated probiotics.

      • James

        That is not true…when you haven’t had anything to eat, your stomach is very acidic. When you eat, your stomach fills up with food which is usually much closer to neutral pH and therefore becomes more neutral. Therefore if you wanted to take a probiotic at a time that is least acidic it should be with food.

        • Jason

          Stomach pH varies throughout the day. Food (or even chewing) causes a release of hydrogen ions in the stomach. The dilution of gastric acid with food is temporary as fluids are absorbed and hydrogen ions and enzymes are added. MMC function and gastric emptying change as well.

        • getitin

          what ive found works for me is fast.. then drink a little water and see how fast it goes down. if it goes right down it probably took some acid with it and then you do the probiotics with plain water. it goes right thru.. if theres food your stomach is not going to empty and acid will be released dawg.. but I guess food can bring some of them in too. ive been on and off antibiotics and my water method works well. I would do your method too just to make sure. the shotgun approach

        • getitin

          kind of wash the acid out with water

        • Sedary

          Unlike the equine stomach, the human stomach does not go into great acid production until it’s kicked in by a histamine response following eating. Because of that, it’s better to take probiotics on an empty stomach along with drinking a glass of water. Wait thirty minutes afterward before eating any food.

    • scott

      what I learned was taking them about 30 to 45 minutes after eating is better because your stomach acid is low from digesting food.

      • Judy Mauer

        Its best to just follow what it says on the bottle because different products are made with different capsule casing technology. Some are made to withstand the stomach and make it through no matter what. Syntol doesn’t have live bacteria in it. They have spurs that are supposed to make it through and grow once in the intestine. This one is made specifically for candida Yeast overgrowth that goes fungal.

    • Ken Stuart
      • Jason

        The study was done _in vitro_ therefore conclusions were improperly drawn.

        • Ken Stuart

          It’s called a “model”, the same technique that is used with great accuracy these days to predict weather.

          It’s also just one study.

          But it is better than all the preceding ideas that were just based on theory.

          • Jason

            Yes, I think you make a great point. Putting a bunch of compounds in a plastic tub and calling that “eating breakfast” might fulfill the burden of scientific proof in meteorology, or definitely in the social sciences. In biology, there is a great distinction between _in vitro_ and _in vivo_. It’s the same with rat vs. human comparisons (or dog, pig, whatever).

            Did you read the experimental design? After reading it, do you believe that their ANOVA was logically supported, or even close to what natural conditions would be _in vivo_?

          • Ken Stuart

            A Ford Escort has one-tenth the horsepower of a Bugatti.

            Your logic is that means we should stop driving Ford Escorts.

            No one claims anything was proved.

            Again, it is better than no study at all.

  • Merete Støvring

    I’m a farmer, and know the importance of keeping the biome balanced in the digestive system of my sheep, cows and horses, when feeding them. But the thought had never crossed my mind that the same principles apply to us. But of course they do! Now, when you’ve explained the important connections and health implications also for humans it totally makes sense, and I also have taken a totally different approach to my own food. Thank you Dr. Permutter!

  • Hoshi Aga

    Thank you for your book titled Brain Maker. I have waited for such a book for 50 years. I have now adopted a gluten free diet. An Indian friend of mine told me that according to ancient vedic literature one is to give up wheat after age 50. That validates what you have written about gluten. Yes I too want to know what supplement to buy to get the core four supplements. Thanks.

  • Joan Larson

    I have been taking Mega Flora by Mega Food which contains all of the probiotics you recommend …. I also read that Dr Andrew Weil supports this brand . My question next is how to take them . I’ve read a lot of conflicting research . With or without food , etc. Does taking them with a drink that is hot like coffee affect the potency ?

    • Jane

      Joan Hi!

      I have been trying to ascertain whether to take the probiotics on an empty stomach or with food? I would appreciate your reply if you learn anything about the best way to take probiotics.

      • David Perlmutter

        I take mine in the morning, right before eating usually.

        • Jane

          Dr Perlmutter,
          Thank you for your response. I started your Garden of Life probiotics and they are terrific. Just wanted to thank you for all of your work, as it has made a huge difference in my health!
          A Votre Sante.

  • Avast

    Does anyone have experience with Hyperbiotics Pro-15 or Hyperbiotics Immune probiotics?

    • Chris

      Looks interesting and doesn’t seem to have FOS or silica dioxide.
      Interested to hear how you do if you try it. There is a good review on the website.

      • Avast

        I’ve been taking Garden of Life but some folks have posted that there are issues with that one. What is FOS?
        I’ve ordered Hyperbiotics Pro-15 and will update after I’ve taken it for a while.

  • Chris

    Looking for the five strains without FOS and silica. Any comments would be appreciated.

  • KarenRG

    Is there a certain strain of L. Brevis that increases levels of the brain growth hormone BDNF?

  • Estelle Babey

    Does homemade milk kefir generally have all five of these core species?

  • Pingback: Finding the Right Probiotic | David Perlmutter M.D.()

  • Svend-Erik

    loking forward to receive the Braimaker book I ordered last week, as I can read here and other Places it should be full of usefull stuff

  • Tracey

    Dr. Perlmutter…my son, who is 13, has had a comprehensive stool analysis test and the results came back as NG or no growth for Lactobacillus. His other good bacteria all show in the good range. He also showed a bad bacteria that is common in food poisoning. Is the the lactobacillus like a ‘fighter’ bacteria, fighting off the bad ? What are some of the main reasons why lactobacillus would show up as ‘no growth’…especially when he is taking a high dose probiotic with it included ?

    • HoneyJ

      I was just diagnosed also with NG for Lactobacillus. My Dr. switched me to Ultimate Flora Critical Colon. Hope this helps. I would like to know how this can happen also.

      • Guenter

        Using RenewLife product too but lately became more careful. On many of their probiotic products you find this sentence: “made in a facility that handles wheat, gluten, soy and dairy. …” Trying to avoid and relace these now by products from other manufacturers …

        • HoneyJ

          I went and checked my probiotic and sure enough that quote was there which I had not seen before. Thank you for that. Will have to keep looking for new products. It seems to be a never ending battle.

  • Kenlyn Keenan Dollar

    where can I buy this?

  • Joanne

    Where can we purchase this?

  • Appletree

    How do I get Kefir water or dairy mailed to me? We are so rural. Thanks!

    • Selma

      Both water kefir and milk kefir are very easy to make. I purchased my starters from Cultures for Life. They have full instructions for you when you purchase.

  • MG Jackson

    Why not try eating good quality yoghurt (unless lactos intolerant) and real sauerkraut, not canned or pastuerized? The lucky few can buy live sauerkraut in the refrigerated section at Trader Joe’s but those of us living in “the sticks” can easily and cheaply make our own with cabbage and salt. Directions on the net work fine. For the lactos intolerant, you will have to buy a kit with the right enzymes to add so you can use almond or some other non-cows milk. Easy, especially in the summertime.

  • Ren Mendoza

    Anybody who has experience taking MEGASPORE PROBIOTICS?

  • Zaki David Jacob

    Dr Perlmutter, my Dr said he’s fine with giving my kids probiotics and I should just use the quantity that is given in over the counter capsules. The problem is that these vary from 2bn to 6bn concentrations and I would like to know if there is an ideal concentration for children to be taking?

    • David Perlmutter
      • Zaki David Jacob

        many thanks for taking the time to reply. Your advice is to take capsules between 10-50bn in concentration, and to check if the key types are present. So is it fair to assume that for an average healthy child between 5 and 10, and this is just a general question not specific to my situation, 6bn would be a low concentration? Thank you again and keep up the great work

  • Teresa

    Specifically, which bacteria (probiotic) will help generalized joint pain?

  • cathy cleland

    RAW PROBIOTICS, Garden of Life, contains all five probiotics in their Ultimate Care, Replenish blend. I was able to purchase from our alternative grocery store in Rhinelander, WI. This has helped me after having my stomach flora destroyed by our hospital throwing IV antibiotics at me and reducing my stomach flora to only yeast. They have several different blends to choose from

    • getitin

      I was on Flagyl and trying this. I think it is helping me shit.

  • Alberto Alves de Queiroz

    I’m reading your book translated to portuguese and I’m been loved it. It’s Wheat, Carbs, and sugar – Your Brain’s Silent killers. Our highest scongratulations! In Brazil is Dr. José Carlos Souto that follows this line

    of thought.

  • 小李飞刀

    It is more effective to drink probiotics during or after meals when your stomach is less acidic, so even more of the probiotics bacteria can reach your intestines alive.

  • asg749d

    Hello everybody,
    Is there a particular brand of probiotics deemed better than others in the market? I’m looking to start a probiotic regimen but I’m getting dizzy going through what I’m finding online and at my local supermarket.

  • Jneen

    Ummm, are you all aware of this info….as you draw lots of attention/money away from pharmacueticals. FYI:

  • Maggie

    my husband has stage III kidney disease, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and COPD, is is o.k. to take the probiotics?

  • Maggie

    Dr. P,
    Do you still do the glutathione treatments? Maybe I’m doing something wrong but I can’t find any info on it on your website. I read about it at Dr. Weil’s site, but it hasn’t been updated in years. Thank you.

  • Belinda Lee Coomey Sheldon

    would someone recommend a brand ?

  • Paul

    What do you recommend for someone that experiences diarrhea when taking the above set of probiotics?

    • David Perlmutter

      There could be many factors at play Paul. Perhaps you want to stop taking the supplement and consult a physician.

  • renee

    which probiotic contains all 5 of the recommended species?

  • BikerGuy7

    I’ve been taking a probiotic 3-in-1 combo manufactured by Allergy Research Group with great results: NOTE: Since this combo must be refrigerated at all times, even during shipping it might be best to purchase at a health food store.

    Lactobacillus: L. plantarum – L. rhamnosus – L. salivarius

    I also take ‘Renew Life/Ultimate Flora Probiotic’ combo; Bifidobacterium:

    B. infantis – B. breve – B. lactis (aka B. animalis) – B. longum – B. bifido

    Take as directed; some say to take with food and others say on an empty stomach.

    Also, FYI – people with Candida should never eat vinegar/fermented foods.

    So, if you have Candida/yeast overgrowth you must clean that up first (Candida diet takes at least 6 weeks) before eating fermented foods like kimchi, apple cider vinegar, sauerkraut, yogurt, etc. as they make the Candida much worse (a lot worse in fact) …. so you need to get rid of the Candida/yeast first, before including any fermented foods in your diet.

    Hope that helps.

  • Pascha

    Can anyone recommend a safe place to purchase the probiotics listed?

  • Dinesh Babu

    Dr Perlmutter, Very grateful for the BrainMaker book. It is such a wonderful gift to the field of health. How long we should take these probiotic supplements? For ever or is there a period after which I can stop taking? The probiotic that I have in my mind is he one from Garden of Life (formulated by you) with 50 billion CFU

  • bill martin

    Does the Garden of Life Primal Defense Ultra provide all of the core Probiotics recommended in the correct dosages in one capsule?

  • Pam

    which brand is highly recommended

  • Rose

    Hello.. My 18 year old daughter is taking antibiotics for acne. I want her on a probiotic while she is on the medicine.. Can you recommend which ones to have her take each day.

  • Kent Boring

    Is there a difference between Lactobacillus Brevis and Bifidobacterium Breve or is there another name this strain may be called?

  • Julie

    Following antibiotics for a severe infection, my daughter had a stool test and has zero growth of either lactobacillus or Bifidobacteria bacteria. Is it possible to repopulate the gut with these bacteria once they have all gone? If so, what is the best way to go about it? Is it worth taking these probiotics daily even if they don’t adhere? Thanks.

    • grant

      hi iam un the same boat. have you found out how to re add them other than FMT?

  • Rachel Price

    Does anyone know how long I am supposed tto take the Dr formulated “Urinary tract” probiotic?

  • Sue

    I am looking for nutritional help for anxiety and depression. Brain Maker cites Bifidobacterium infantis as helpful in a chain of events leading to increased serotonin. On this Recources page Bifidobacterium longum is cited. I was hoping for advice on where to purchase these. Do they have to be refrigerated in transport? A lot has been written about supplements that don’t contain what they purport to contain. Thank you.

  • Sebastian Bryers

    I’ve found that it’s better to take my probiotics on an empty stomach – if you also get one with prebiotics then they not only have less acid to kill them, but also the food they need to thrive. I’d highly recommend trying Ora Organic’s Probiotic, as it’s a capsule product that’s also USDA Organic and vegan. I have no trouble taking it like I had with some other products, and it seems to be working really well (3 weeks in). You can get it at and if you subscribe you get 20% off!

  • Eric Stilson

    What is the best strain of probiotics to support healthy skin?

  • Mid Merry

    I;ve jsut stumbled across this book and am very excited. I have coeliac disease and also graves disease, and have suffered from depression and anxiety had constant ear infections as a child ( although natural birth and breast fed for 18 months) but a lot of antibiotics. A questions DR Perlmutter MD, I suspect i have a leaky gut and have big issues with bloating etc… is it wise to heal the gut first through diet then begin supplementation with pro and prebiroics or start with politics NOW? i find when I take kombucha I swell up like a baloon….? Thanks Mid

    • Doris

      Please read about the genetic mutation DAO enzyme that causes the histamine in food to not be digested. Read on Internet Suzy Cohen “Allergies and Your Genes: Histamine, Autoimmunity and DAO SNPs.” You have the symptoms of lacking this needed DAO enzyme. Kombucha and other fermented foods are very high in histamine. For people (like me) who lack the DAO enzyme genetically, we need to stay away from fermented foods. There is an enzyme on the market by Nutricology called “DAO Histamine Digester with Bioflavonoids”. Dr. David Williams (look him up, too–his July, 2016 article is all about this subject–says to take one or two of these enzyme capsules no more than 10 minutes before eating a high histamine food. He said the DAO enzyme does not stay in the system long so he said some will need to take 1 or 2 no longer than 5 to 8 minutes before eating a high histamine food. He said to experiment with dose and timing. It is definitely best to avoid high histamine foods as much as possible, too. These articles will help you understand. There are many illnesses associated with lacking the DAO gene. Blessings on your getting the help you need.

      • carri foss

        What probiotic would you suggest then?

  • I was wondering if the friendly bacteria in yogurt, for instance, is killed off if yogurt is used in cooking? thanks in advance for any replies

  • Joana Oliveira

    are they avaiable in pills?

  • Our family has spent thousands of dollars and many years trying different probiotics. Here is our independent review (no monetized links!) of about 20 probiotics. Also included are clues about specific issues that probiotics can address. Examples include healing leaky gut, digestion, skin microbiome, etc.

    • ScoobySnack

      Interesting that I see you do not list Dr. Perlmutter’s formulated Garden of Life. Did you test those products at all?

      • No, I don’t have Dr. Perlmutter’s formulated Garden of Life in the list. Why? Because no independent practitioner that I know of has recommended them. Dr. Perlmutter recommends Garden of LIfe, but remember that he makes money on every sale, so he is not independent. I also haven’t heard from any independent patients having great results from Garden of Life. If I hear of independent practitioners or patients having good success, then I will try it and add it to the article. I have one additional probiotic in trial right now – Culturelle. I hope to have that added to the list in about 3-4 months time.

        • ScoobySnack

          I also noticed that the Ultimate Flora Extra Care 50B you list doesn’t include Dr. P’s lactobaccilus brevis, but has the rest from this article.

          I just called up my local pharmacist (natural/wellness pharmacy, incl. typical prescriptions) and he recommends Florajen3. Never heard of the RenewLife brand. The Floragen3 is kept refrigerated– I saw some concerns that the Ultimate Flora Extra Care 50B coming from Amazon probably isn’t kept above the manufacturer’s recommended 77° and may lose potency.

          • Great, I will check out Floragen3. If you scroll down to the very end of the article, you will find:

            Probiotics should ideally be shipped cold so the bacteria don’t die.
            Several of the links in this article are to Amazon. Amazon has started
            shipping some probiotics cold, so contact them to check before ordering.
            Even when buying from the refrigerated section of a store, there is no
            guarantee that the probiotics were kept cold when being shipped to the

        • vanwin

          Funnily enough this is why I stopped subscribing to Doc Mercola, before I knew it he was trying to sell me saucepans. In his zeal to sell I became conscious of similar tradesmens techniques like the double glazing men who put their foot in your door and won’t go away. In Mercola’s case I found his spiel more like a secondhand car salesman’s and less like a reputable doctor. I decided that a normal doctor would not talk in the same language as that.

    • Robin
      • I don’t see a probiotic in this link – just it requesting me to sign up for an account. I assume this is spam…

  • Pingback: Exceptional Probiotic Supplements Dr Weil | Probiotic more Health()

  • Pingback: First-rate Probiotic Traces – Fredi More Probiotic()

  • ri

    I keep getting reoccurring Bacterial Vaginosis and have been for years. I can not tell you what a nuisance it is has been in my life I have tried everything including several rounds of oral and topical antibiotics which got rid of it briefly then it would come back. I read that the PH in your vagina plays a role but also the diversity of the bacteria so I recently purchased a vaginal probiotic from the health food store as I refuse to take antibiotics now unless absolutely necessary. I will go home to see if Lactobaccilus Brevis is one of the species in this probiotic. IT is inserted pnce a night for 10 consecutive days. Hopefully it does the trick once and for all!

  • Kate

    The best way to ingest probiotics is via fermented foods. They all survive stomach acid. Foods also have a wider variety of the desired probiotic strains. Not to mention the foods contain a higher concentration you just can’t fit into a capsule (about 10 to 100 times stronger). Also, much, much cheaper than buying the capsules. It costs about $3 to make a 1/2 gallon of sauerkraut. A half gallon of milk kefir or yogurt costs $1 to $2 for the powdered starter and $5 for 1/2 gallon organic milk. You can get 4 to 8 generations from each packet of powdered starter. Or invest in milk kefir grains for really powerful kefir. Water kefir and kombucha are even cheaper to make, about 50 cents a 1/2 gallon after your initial investment for the grains or scobe.
    Making your own fermented foods is surprisingly easy.
    Or buy your fermented foods, just make sure they have ‘live’ cultures.
    There’s also lots of other benefits to food over capsules. For instance, about one ounce of sauerkraut juice just before a meal helps boost digestion, it triggers release of stomach acid, which most of us with digestive issues are lacking enough of.
    Another benefit, vitamins and minerals in the foods are made more bio-available and the foods are easier to digest. There’s many more benefits as well, which Dr Perlmutter and other authors have covered.

  • joah

    are there probiotics to buy, which contain all of these?

  • Alfonso Enriquez

    Who knows if kefir contains: Lactobaccilus plantarum, Lactobaccilus acidophilus, Lactobaccilus brevis, Bifidobacterium lactis and Bifidobacterium longum ?
    If that is the case, it will be the best way to obtain inexpressive, home made fresh good bacteria for ourselves and our relatives with ALZ.

  • Ruth O’Keefe

    Who has determined what probiotics are best for humans? How was this determination made?

  • Here is how to pick the best probiotics:
    This advice has helped me to treat digestive issues and lose weight.

  • Anna Belle

    When can tweens and teens start taking the adult versions of probiotics? Is it based on age, weight, or….? My kids can all swallow capsules, and hate the chewable childrens’ versions.

  • Ken Stuart

    FYI – the new “PB8 Immune” (which actually has 10 strains instead of 8, but they have decided that “PB8” has too much brand recognition) has all 5 of these recommended strains, including two different lactis strains.

  • Magda

    I would like to purchase these strains in bulk. Do you have any reputable sources you recommend?

  • Pingback: Gut Bacteria – FemmePharma()

  • Teresa Cole

    Whats the Probiotics Name where to buy ….. and if taking this do you have to take enzymes

  • Muhammad Salim

    Take longum before break fast in empty stomach

  • lynette mayo

    My husband eats the same yogurt every day, he has stomach problems, gas etc. Can he be overdosing on one species of probiotic creating an imbalance!

  • Amy

    At birth my daughter was a premie (born at 29 weeks) and had to be on a 21 day round of antibiotics for meningitis in order for her to get a much needed shunt surgery for another condition. She is being fed through a feeding tube now but we are working on breastfeeding before she can go home. When she comes home are there any good probiotics for newborns that she can take to help build the good gut bugs? What other things could I do for her to help with this besides probiotics? Any suggestions on additional reading are always appreciated too! Thanks!

  • Judy Mauer

    So I am wondering how well do the probiotics in fermented foods move through the stomach acid and reach the intestines. What makes fermented probiotics in food better at this than oral pill forms? Or are they better? It just doesn’t make sense that if they cannot get through to the intestines without special measures being taken in delivery of supplements, Do any of the ones in food make it?

  • Shannon Compton

    Where can I find links to sources on the information in the article?

  • From my research this is the best brand: “Wakunaga Kyolic 9”. It contains 9 important strains and lacks L.acidophilus and thats good news since that strain promotes fat gain 🙁

    Then only missing one is Christensella minuta but that is not commercially available anywhere (yet). There’s another good product in iHerb called “kefiran” it combines well with the above. Try it!