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Best Probiotics for Men and Women

cartoon germs with shields

Most people think of bacteria as the “bad guys,” but this is not entirely true. Trillions of bacteria live in the human gut, especially the large intestine. This community of bacteria is called the gut microbiota and includes both beneficial and harmful gut bacteria. 

In healthy individuals, beneficial bacteria outnumber harmful bacteria. When you are sick with an infection, bad bacteria grow uncontrollably. Probiotic supplements contain live beneficial bacteria. They can help tip the scales back to perfect balance. 

Probiotic dietary supplements have several health benefits, including digestive health and other health conditions. Please continue reading to learn more about probiotic strains and how to choose the best probiotic supplement for men and women.

What are probiotics good for? 

Probiotics supplementation can help digest food better, prevent harmful gut microbes from entering the bloodstream, and even synthesize certain vitamins. In addition, evidence suggests that probiotic benefits extend beyond the digestive tract. For example, certain probiotic strains (beneficial microbes) help to support the immune system and fight inflammation.

What are the health benefits of these dietary supplements?

The health benefits of probiotics are wide-ranging and are not limited to gut health. Probiotic supplementation has been found to help people with digestive system problems such as: 

Other health problems that can benefit from taking probiotics include:

It is worth noting that these health claims are currently supported by insufficient evidence. They require further research and large randomized controlled trials. If you suffer from any health conditions, consult a provider with medical expertise before taking probiotics.

What is the alternative to probiotic supplements?

Probiotic treatment in the form of a dietary supplement is very convenient. The best probiotics contain several probiotic strains with known health benefits. However, some experts in clinical nutrition feel that probiotic foods are a better and more natural choice. 

Probiotic-rich foods include fermented foods such as yogurt, kombucha (fermented black tea), kimchi (fermented cabbage), and kefir (fermented dairy drink). Other fermented foods like sauerkraut (refrigerated, not shelf-stable) also provide a nourishing environment where beneficial bacteria can thrive.

Is it good to take probiotics every day?

Taking probiotic supplements every day is safe and beneficial for most people. A daily probiotic supplement can help to keep your digestive system healthy. It can also help in managing many health conditions, as mentioned above. 

Who should not take probiotics?

Probiotics can provide health benefits to most people. However, individuals with pre-existing health problems should be medically reviewed by a healthcare provider before taking probiotics. 

In particular, people with compromised immune systems and those recovering from surgery or serious illnesses should take probiotic supplements with caution. Children, especially very sick children, should be given probiotic bacteria only under the supervision of a healthcare provider. 

You should know that probiotic supplements can trigger allergic reactions in some people. Those with a history of allergy to these products should not take them.

What are the top 3 probiotics?

Now that you understand how consuming probiotics can help optimize your intestinal flora let’s look at some common probiotic bacteria. Three common strains of probiotic bacteria include: 

Lactobacillus plantarum

This is one of the most common probiotic strains. It helps to support immune function and clear the digestive tract of harmful bacteria, helping your body fight clinical infectious diseases. In addition, this beneficial bacteria aids gut health. It can relieve symptoms like stomach pain, bloating, and indigestion. Probiotic supplementation with L. plantarum can also be obtained from probiotic-rich foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, sourdough bread, and brined olives.

Lactobacillus brevis

This live bacteria found in probiotics is rich in antioxidants and can help clear your gut of toxic substances. Probiotic supplements containing this bacteria can help maximize your immune response and ability to fight infections. Natural ways to get L. brevis from diet include eating yogurt, sauerkraut, pickles, and kimchi.

Leuconostoc mesenteroides

This probiotic bacteria is known to boost immune function, protect the digestive system, and keep the cells of the digestive tract healthy and strong. Besides taking a probiotic supplement containing L. mesenteroides, you can get this healthy gut bacteria from fermented foods like pickled vegetables, kimchi, and sauerkraut. 

How to choose the best probiotic supplement?

Here are some tips on choosing the best probiotics for men and women:

  • Look for name-brand products designed to treat a specific condition that you want to address, such as irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Choose probiotic supplements with at least 1 billion CFUs (colony-forming units) of probiotic bacteria.
  • Check labels for healthy gut bacteria like Lactobacillus, Leuconostoc, and Bifidobacterium and healthy yeast like Saccharomyces boulardii, which are some of the most researched probiotics.
  • Consider being medically reviewed by an expert in complementary and integrative health to optimize your gut microbiota. A complementary and alternative medicine expert can help you choose the best probiotics, especially if you suffer from chronic health problems.

Probiotics have many beneficial effects on the gut microbiome specifically and human health in general. What’s more, the health benefits of probiotics come with very few risks. These dietary supplements are safe for most people to take. However, it can take some trial and error. Now that you understand how probiotics work, the above tips will hopefully help you find a probiotic supplement that works for you.


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5994577/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7057033/
  3. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmicb.2018.02987/full#
  4. https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/probiotics-what-you-need-to-know