Probiotics: Which Should You Take?

Probiotics are a popular health supplement. How do you know which ones and how much to take?

 Most of us have probably used acidophilus supplements, or more specifically, lactobacillus acidophilus.  However, now there are more choices of probiotics on the market than ever, in a wide variety of price ranges, and in an even greater variation of bacteria amounts.  Does it really matter which you take?

 You will want to make an informed decision based on your personal need, such as are you wanting to just supplement a basically healthy digestive tract, or are you wanting a supplement to relieve and heal digestive issues.  I have used plain L acidophilus as well as some inexpensive probiotic combinations from Walmart.  If you have tried them, you, too, probably noticed an overall good experience of just feeling that your stomach is more settled, digesting easier, and less bloated after eating.  These simple inexpensive types are fine for those who feel that their digestion is healthy.

 Why would someone with good digestion want to take any probiotics at all? 

 As the digestive enzymes that occur naturally in foods are mostly destroyed by cooking, and many cultures eat too high a percentage of cooked food to maintain a good level of natural probiotic intake solely from food, a simple supplement is helpful.  However, if you or a family member have consistent bloating, constipation, inconsistently formed bowel movements, yeast buildup, ulcers, or consistent gut pain after eating, you will want to implement the information I recently came across.

 Though 1 million bacteria per pill sounds like a huge amount, these typical doses are not sufficient if you are having digestive issues.

Experts in probiotics say that you need a 10 billion bacteria per day probiotic intake to achieve any health benefits in a fairly healthy person.  On the other hand, those with yeast infections or candida, ulcers, or other more troublesome digestive issues actually need 50 billion bacteria per day or more. (1)

 Here’s the history on how the necessity of these amounts came to be discovered.

Harry Bronozian was a chemist and a chemical engineer who suffered from ulcers for about a year and candida for 10 years.  Both health issues were under control within five months of regular use of his ultra-high potency probiotics.  After taking 500 billion probiotic bacteria per day, a biopsy showed the ulcer-causing were completely eliminated from his stomach and intestine.(1) 

Why is such a large amount necessary?  Look at this quote from a web article on custom probiotics:

Think about this for a minute. If you have roughly 100 trillion bacteria in your intestines, and different acidophilus species make up about 30 to 35% of that, you have lost 30 to 35 trillion good bacteria. If your test comes back showing no bifidobacteria then you have lost 65 to 70 trillion bacteria. That is 35,000 and 65,000 billion. Now do you think taking a probiotic with 1 billion live bacteria is going to do you any good? Do you think 10 billion will work? (1)

According to the same article, some patients with chronic yeast issues had stool tests reveal that there were no acidophilus or bifidobacteria in their digestive systems at all!  So you can see that if you are trying to restore a level of 100 trillion bacteria, the typical 1 million bacteria hardly makes an impact.

Let’s look at suggest instructions for those trying to restore a healthy digestive system.  These instructions are from the footnoted site below:

-Take 1 custom probiotic 2 times a day for 2 days with clean water, morning and night on an empty stomach.

-After the 2 days, take 2 capsules 2 times a day.

-After 4 days, take 4 capsules 2 times a day.

-There may be slight cramping due to cleaning out the digestive system.

-Raise the doses until you have 2 bowel movements a day, showing you’ve reached the optimum level for you. This usually occurs between 2 to 10 capsules.

-Continue this dose until the yeast infections no longer occur. Or, you can slowly back down to where you maintain one or more healthy bowel movement a day.


A probiotic blend is preferable as you want to use probiotics that fit the digestive needs of your stomach.

Though many people are only familiar with L. acidophilus, here is a list of probiotics to look for in a good blend.

Lactobacillus acidophilus makes up 20% of the intestinal bacteria.

Lactobacillus Rhamnosus is found primarily in the small intestine and stomach with smaller amounts in the large intestine.

Bifidobacteria is the most prevalant species of bacteria in the large intestine with sub-strains such as Bifidobacteria and Bifidobacteria Bifidum.

Lactobacillus Plantarum  is in human saliva and has been found to clear up to 95% of the symptoms associated with IBS in high doses.

I recommend using the link below on Custom Probiotics to read in more detail.

Click Here to go to Custom Probiotics

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