Which are better probiotics in food or probiotics in supplements?

Probiotics are live bacteria which have frequently been reported to be beneficial in preventing a wide range of diseases as well as playing a major role in treating the existing ailments.  Our yogurt contains four live cultures.

Lactobacillus bulgaricus

Lactobacillus acidophilus

Bifidobacterium lactis

Streptococcus thermophiles

But with all that is written about probiotics I wanted to look at which was better the pill/tablet probiotic or taking foods whic have probiotics? Thanks to Lorraine Maher of the Gut Health Clinic in Blackrock, who directed me to it.  I found this interesting paper in the National Library of Medicine.  Homayoni Rad A, Vaghef Mehrabany E, Alipoor B, Vaghef Mehrabany L. The Comparison of Food and Supplement as Probiotic Delivery Vehicles. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2016;56(6):896-909. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2012.733894. PMID: 25117939. 


Both foods and supplements have been able to confer the health benefits claimed for them. However, it is not known which one can be clinically more efficient. This review aimed to discuss this looking at the evidence available in the literature.  Articles indexed in PubMed and ScienceDirect between 2000 and 2011 were reviewed. The articles included the clinical trials in which either foods or supplements were used to administer the probiotics to either patients suffering from different diseases or healthy subjects.

The authors conclude: "Although both foods and supplements seem to have been efficient carriers for the beneficial bacteria, to generally promote public health in communities, probiotic foods appear to be preferred to probiotic supplements"…interesting stuff, and good news for our live sheep’s milk yogurt I would think.

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