Probiotics: What are They and do They Actually Work?
So, do probiotics actually work? I mean, what are they really?
Tell me if this sounds like you: I took probiotics for a long time because, to be honest, that’s what every brand – company – influencer – kept telling me to do.
I’d take them for weeks without any idea if they were working or not… I mean, I think so? I pooped regularly so I guess that must be them – right?
I’ve come to learn that most probiotics don’t work because:
you’re probably not eating the right foods to support them
you’re taking a ‘multi-strain’
it’s a product that’s bullshitting you
Let’s break this down a bit more:
Each strain does something different, so if you’re going to dive in and invest – you should know exactly what strain you’re taking. On top of that, once you know what kind of strain you're consuming, you HAVE to know what your strain needs to consume.
Don't act surprised, you're not the only one around here that needs to eat! Just like you need food to survive - so do probiotics. Each existing strain requires certain foods in order to survive and grow. If you don't consume the foods your probiotics require, they’ll die within 24 hours of you taking them. RIP strainy-mcstrainy-biotics.
“Multi-Strain” products are basically “maybe’s” in a bottle. Maybe they’ll work – maybe they won’t. Like anything in life it’s impossible to be good at e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g and the same rule applies for probiotics. Taking a multi-strain that claims to help numerous digestive issues – in reality – will only do half the job.
This may be one of the biggest reasons why you're unsure whether you’re probiotics are actually working. Not only are you ingesting a ton of half-assed strains, but you simply can’t eat all the foods each of them need to survive (see point A). As a result, most strains die off within 24 hours – and the rest remain working at only half capacity.
CFU’s + Doubling Rate…. don’t mean ‘ish. You’ll see these letters and numbers advertised on most bottles because, let’s face it – they sound impressive. In truth, for all the big numbers being advertised, most strains are dead by the time they hit the store shelves.
So what do we do?
Figure out what strain would be ideal for you – or what strain you’re taking.
Find out what foods that strain needs in order to grow and survive
Buy Transient – transient basically means ‘single strain’ and the less strains, the better
Patented, Patented, Patented – if you’re probiotic isn’t patented, it hasn’t been tested. If it hasn’t been tested – there’s no proof it actually works. Buy patented only!