Fermented foods have been a part of the human diet for thousands of years. Fermentation is a process in which microorganisms like yeast and bacteria break down food components and convert them into other products.
The most recognized example is the conversion of carbohydrates such as starches and sugars into alcohol such as in beer or wine. However, fermentation has also been used to make foods more digestible, nutritious, or to impart texture and flavor. Examples include leavened breads, cheeses, yogurt, kefir, fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut or kimchi, or miso.
Historically, Ancient Egyptian and Middle Eastern civilizations used fermentation as a method of preserving foods.1 Ancient China used fermentation techniques for various foods as well. It was not until the early 1900s that fermented dairy products, such as yogurt, began to be associated with health benefits.1 Recognizing the beneficial effects the ingestion of certain bacterial species had on human health, the term ‘probiotic’ was coined in the 1960s.1 Derived from the Latin word ‘pro’ meaning ‘for’ and the Greek word ‘bios’ meaning ‘life’, probiotics can be thought of as, "for life.
Today, the scientific community recognizes probiotics as living microorganisms that provide health benefits when taken in adequate amounts.2
Your body is home to 38 trillion microorganisms that assist in keeping you healthy.*3 Different areas of the body, such as the skin, digestive tract, and mouth, have different communities of microorganisms and their own unique microbiomes. The digestive tract has the highest density of resident microorganisms and is the most studied.3
The roles these microorganisms play is as diverse as they are. Just like vitamins and minerals have different roles to play in promoting optimal health, different types of probiotics will have different health benefits. Some probiotic products provide a blend of different strains similar to a multivitamin. Other products take a more targeted approach by providing just one strain akin to taking a letter vitamin.
helps maintain optimal overall
health and to reduce occasional
Maintains a healthy
balance between beneficial
and less favorable
microorganisms in the gut*
keeps you at
your healthy best*
helps keep you regular
and relieve occasional
gas and bloating*
so your body can utilize
the healthy foods you eat*
gut bacteria produce vitamin K
and several B vitamins*4
CFU: CFU stands for colony forming units. This number represents the number of live, active microbial cells in a probiotic product. CFUs give a more accurate representation of the potency of a probiotic compared to products than only list mg amounts.
Strains: Some products will only identify their probiotics to the species level (ex. Lactobacillus acidophilus), look for probiotics that are identified by genera, species, and strain (ex. Lactobacillus acidophilus La-14). The strain level of identification is analogous to a dog breed. Just as it is important to know whether you are bringing home a new Chihuahua or a German Sheppard, knowing the strain in addition to the genus and species can tell you a lot about the probiotic you are purchasing.
Expiration: Look for probiotic products with guaranteed quality and CFU through the printed expiration date.
Structure/Function Claims: Probiotics are a diverse category with a wide variety of potential health benefits. Some strains provide everyday digestive support while others may support immune function, abdominal comfort or more.* Reviewing the product copy can help you better understand the health benefits so you can select the right probiotic for your unique needs.
Antibiotics may deplete or alter the composition of microorganisms naturally residing in the gut.5 Probiotics provide friendly bacteria for the digestive system.* Puritan’s Pride probiotic products are not intended to serve as a replacement for antibiotic medications, nor should you discontinue taking prescribed medications while supplementing with probiotics.
Just like eating one type of food is not going to cover all of your nutritional needs, one strain of probiotic is unlikely to cover all of your digestive concerns. The benefits of a probiotic are dependent on the amount and type of strains included in the formula. Certain probiotic strains, like those found in Puritan’s Pride® Probiotic Gummies provide relief from occasional constipation, gas and bloating when taken daily.*
Both probiotics and prebiotics can support your gut microbiota but there are important differences between the two.* Probiotics are live microorganisms that are intended to introduce new, friendly bacteria to your gut. Prebiotics can be thought of as food for the microorganisms already residing within your gut. Unlike probiotics, prebiotics are not alive. They are food substances, like fibers, that we cannot digest ourselves but are selectively utilized by the beneficial microorganisms already residing in our gut.
Fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, miso and kimchi are produced using microorganisms. However, these microorganisms are chosen for their role in food production, not necessarily for their health benefits and typically only use a single type of probiotic. After cooking, processing, and storage, not all fermented foods will contain live, viable microorganisms by the time you are ready to enjoy them. A diet that includes fermented foods can be supplemented with probiotics to improve the quality, quantity and variety of strains consumed to provide optimal health benefits.*
For continued benefits, probiotic supplements should be taken on a routine, ongoing basis. The changes that occur to gut microbiota with supplementation are temporary. If supplementation is discontinued, a person’s microbiota will typically return to its previous status within one to three weeks.1
Since probiotics are live microorganisms, they need to be stored properly with care. Proper storage conditions will vary depending on the strains of probiotics in the product. Probiotics should not be stored in the refrigerator unless instructed to do so on the packaging by the manufacturer.
At Puritan’s Pride®, we take special care to choose the right packaging to suit the particular needs of the strains in our products. Strains that are sensitive to humidity are packaged in advanced bottles with desiccant technology to control moisture. Other strains are happy in our opaque white bottles that block out light. Things you can do at home to ensure the potency of your probiotics are to make sure the bottle is tightly sealed and avoid storing in areas such as the bathroom where showers can generate excessive humidity.
|Serving Size 1 wafer|
|Amount Per Serving||% Daily Value|
|Total Carbohydrate||1 g <1% **|
|Sugars||1 g ***|
|Lactobacillus Blend||5 mg ***|
|(which contains 1 billion active lactobaillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium lactis at the time of manufacture)|
|**Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.|
|***Daily Value not established.|
No Artificial color, Flavor or Sweetener, No Preservatives, No Milk, No Lactose, No Soy, No Gluten, No Wheat, No Fish, Sodium Free
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