You want to take care of your gut, and probiotics are a great place to start … but STARTING is the problem!
How do you determine which varieties are best for you?
If this is your first time taking probiotics, Jini recommends starting with an infant bacterial species called B. infantis and then gradually working your way up to adult species such as L. acidophilus, B. bifidus, and L. bulgaricus.
Here are the target points for each strain of bacteria:
- Lactobacillus acidophilus: NAS super strain to optimize positive activity in the small intestine
- Bifidobacterium bifidum: Malyoth super strain to support the function of the large intestine
- Lactobacillus bulgaricus: Super strain LB-51 used to monitor transient flora that is part of 40 percent of dry weight faeces. Active in the small and large intestines.
Which probiotics does Jini recommend?
Here is a probiotic cheat sheet that Jini created that will help you choose which products will work best for you based on your symptoms. Natren is the brand that Jini recommends and the brand that they have used in all of their tried and tested protocols. If you decide to buy a different brand, this guide can help you find an effective probiotic.
I can’t find what I’m looking for in my country?
If we don’t currently have the product you want in our Canada, UK, or Australia stores, know our US stores ship worldwide!
Are my probiotics still good if the ice pack melts in transit?
We recently had a reader write about shipping probiotics from the US to the UK because they feared the ice packs would not last long and the probiotics would spoil.
We have already shipped cold orders to the UK and our packages are stored in the truck at the right temperatures to ensure quality and safety. The probiotics are packaged to stay cool throughout the multi-stop delivery process, especially in the summer heat! Often times, the dry ice or ice packs have completely or almost completely evaporated or melted during shipping, which is normal. This just means the ice packs did their job, so your probiotics are fine and should have the stated amount of live bacteria on the label!
Natren assures us that this is fine as long as the probiotics have not been warm for more than 30 hours. And did you know that Natren automatically contains MORE bacteria than what is stated on the label to allow for possible death during transport? Even if your probiotics are warm to the touch or at room temperature when you open them, they still contain the amount of live bacteria indicated on the label. Remember to put your probiotics in the refrigerator right away!
Okay, I have my probiotics … when do I take them?
Here are some posts on the blog that offer some helpful guides:
As mentioned at the very beginning of this post, it is highly recommended that you start with a small amount to introduce the bacteria and then work up to the full dose the first time you take Natren therapeutic probiotics. Some people find that sodium is TOO strong, so they have to gradually work their way up to tolerance.
Let’s say you start with just 1/4 tsp to avoid or minimize the temporary reaction. bifido once or twice a day. Once you feel like you have developed tolerance for that particular strain, you can add one of the other strains. You may want to start again with just 1/4 tsp. – until you can tolerate all 3 strains.
How do I take my probiotics?
Unless you are following a specific protocol of Jini, you can follow the dosing instructions on the bottle.
For powder-based probiotics, you can mix the powder in a glass of room temperature filtered water or spring water. Do not use tap water as the chlorine in tap water kills bacteria! Some people’s bowels are so toxic that they can only tolerate a dose every four days or a pinch of powder. So, listen to your gut, start slowly and continue at the pace that is right for your body.
Powdered probiotics (encapsulated or in loose powder) must be ingested entirely on their own for at least 2 hours from antibiotics or pathogens (such as wild oregano, potentized garlic, olive leaf, etc.). For maximum effectiveness, take your probiotics 20 minutes before you eat or 2 hours after you eat – unless you are using Natren 3-in-1 Healthy Trinity.
Healthy Trinity capsules are not powdered, so they cannot be mixed with water like the others. They contain 3 strains individually encapsulated in an oil matrix formulation. Therefore, they need to be taken with a meal to break down the capsule and spread the good bacteria.
ALL bacteria compete for space. This is how the organism works, so there are no species that are compatible and others are incompatible. Each individual bacterial species must be stored on its own for maximum effectiveness. The reason Healthy Trinity can have three species in the same capsule is because the species are each wrapped / protected in their own oil bladder. Although the three species are in a capsule together, they do not touch.
This is a technology owned by Natren, and they had a $ 1.5 million machine made especially for them in Germany that can encapsulate that way – such a cool science!
What about prebiotics?
According to Jini, some companies package their probiotics with fructooligosaccharides (FOS) and / or inulin – indigestible substances called prebiotics. They claim that they feed the bacteria and thereby improve performance. Be aware, however, that many bacteria (both good and bad) can feed on these substances. So, if you have mostly bad bacterial flora (like most, if not all people with IBD), consuming prebiotics can make your symptoms worse.
Also, most FOS is made by chemical synthesis and in many cases has been shown to cause abdominal pain, gas, and gas. Jini especially does not recommend it for people with IBS or IBD. She also recommends avoiding FOS and inulin in vitamin / mineral supplements, whey protein powders, etc. Be sure to read the labels as it becomes more and more popular to add them to all types of products. For perfectly healthy people with an established beneficial bacterial flora, prebiotics are likely fine, especially if they cannot naturally obtain these substances through a good diet. Check the links below for more information:
Recent research on prebiotics and probiotics
Towards a broader approach to prebiotics
Lactobacillus Species: Taxonomic Complexity and Controversial Vulnerabilities
Finally, an interview with Jini and Natasha Trenev, the founders of Natren Probiotika, about probiotics and prebiotics.
I know choosing the right probiotic to start with can be overwhelming. I hope you find all of this information helpful. Have fun healing and listen to your belly! 🙂
Savannah is Jini’s assistant. An avid chef who loves to travel, speaks fluent Spanish and has a special affinity for animals. Savannah is always ready with helpful resources and answers to challenging questions.