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Best Probiotics for Ulcerative Colitis in 2024: A Review Of Top 5 Brands

Probiotics are live microorganisms that may provide numerous health benefits when ingested or applied to the body. Found in yogurt, fermented foods, and dietary supplements, probiotics consist of beneficial bacteria that help maintain a healthy bacterial balance within the body. They can be especially useful for gastrointestinal conditions like ulcerative colitis (UC), as they promote a healthy gut microbiome and combat harmful bacteria. Including probiotics in your diet may serve as a natural approach to managing ulcerative colitis symptoms.

Best probiotics for ulcerative colitis: a shortlist

  1. VSL#3 — best probiotic for calming UC flare-ups
  2. Unbloat — best probiotic with UC-specific strains
  3. Oweli — best probiotic for UC-related inflammation
  4. Bulletproof — best synbiotic for supporting optimal gut function
  5. Culturelle® — best for reducing UC-induced digestive upset

How have we compiled the top probiotics for ulcerative colitis?

Understanding the formulation of each product and the criteria it must satisfy to be a viable option is crucial. In selecting the best probiotic for ulcerative colitis, we took into account several factors, including suitable probiotic strains, customer feedback, science-backed ingredients, and ingredient quality.

Probiotic strainsUC-specific
ReviewsCustomer satisfaction
Science-backed ingredientsResearched for UC
Ingredient qualityThird-party tested, GMP-certified
CFUsAdequate amounts
  • Probiotic strains. We ensured that our recommended products contained specific bacterial strains tailored to address UC. We looked for products with Lactobacillus acidophilus, Saccharomyces boulardii, Escherichia coli Nissle, or Bifidobacterium breve, all of which have shown promise in managing ulcerative colitis.
  • Reviews. We analyzed many online reviews to assess customer opinions about brands and their products. Additionally, gauging customer satisfaction was another crucial factor we considered in identifying the top probiotic supplements for addressing ulcerative colitis.
  • Science-backed ingredients. We carefully assessed products featuring probiotic strains supported by scientific research. This involved examining study findings for the use of probiotic supplements for ulcerative colitis. By focusing on probiotics with scientific backing, we aimed to select products formulated to provide benefits for UC.
  • Ingredient quality. Ensuring that the probiotic ingredients adhere to the highest quality standards is essential for their effectiveness and safety. To meet this requirement, we specifically evaluated probiotics manufactured according to the GMP protocol. We also considered probiotics subjected to third-party testing, where independent labs verify the purity, potency, and label accuracy.
  • CFU. Colony Forming Units (CFU) refer to the number of live bacteria in each probiotic dose. A higher CFU count signifies a greater concentration of beneficial bacteria. We considered probiotics with a sufficient CFU count, typically in the billions, maintained throughout their shelf life.

5 best probiotics for ulcerative colitis in 2023: an overview

When creating this list, we assessed numerous brands and probiotic supplements focused on ulcerative colitis.

It is essential to pinpoint a high-quality product that meets specific individual requirements. While many probiotic supplements contain similar ingredients, their unique formulations can offer varying benefits. This factor should be considered when aiming for specific health goals.

Each product is categorized according to a distinct classification that highlights its particular benefits, ingredients, and other features. The list also includes the pros and cons of each product.

1. VSL#3 — top probiotic for alleviating UC flare-ups

VSL probiotics

VSL#3 is a high-potency probiotic supplement designed for the dietary management of UC.

According to the website, it is a multi-strain probiotic with 8 complementary strains from 3 different genera.

The product contains 112.5 billion CFU per serving and is available in a bottle of 60 capsules. VSL#3 recommends consulting with a doctor to determine the appropriate dose and usage schedule.

VSL#3 is clinically tested, recommended by gastroenterologists, and held to a higher standard as a Medical Food.

The product has received positive reviews from verified buyers, with many users finding relief from UC and IBS symptoms.

Pricing options include one-time purchases at $65.95 or subscription-based purchases at $59.36, with delivery options ranging from 30 to 120 days.

2. Unbloat — top probiotic featuring strains tailored for UC

Unbloat Daily Capsules

Unbloat Daily Capsules is a supplement formulated to address persistent bloating through its powerful combination of 40 anti-bloating ingredients. The website states that Unbloat can offer relief from bloating-related discomfort in as little as 6 hours.

This product contains probiotic strains such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium with potential benefits in managing UC. Each serving delivers 25 billion CFU of probiotic strains, positioning it as a potent anti-bloating "superbiotic" that may help you regain control of your body. The brand claims that it may also assist in breaking down food components for improved digestion and bolster your immune system.

Unbloat Daily Capsules are produced in the United States and are vegetarian, gluten-free, and non-GMO. However, the website does not provide detailed information regarding testing and certifications.

A single container includes 30 servings with a recommended dosage by the manufacturer of 2 capsules daily.

The supplement is priced at $59.99 for a single purchase, but discounts are offered for monthly and quarterly subscription plans.

3. Oweli — leading probiotic for addressing UC-associated inflammation

OWELI-PROBIOTIC

Oweli Probiotic is a full-spectrum probiotic formula designed to support gut wellness and immune function. It contains 40 billion CFUs of beneficial probiotic strains, utilizing MAKtrek® Bi-Pass Technology for a more targeted absorption.

The product may help maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria, promote better digestive health, and support metabolism while optimizing a natural immune response.

Oweli Probiotic includes strains such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus paracasei, and Bifidobacterium lactis. The patented MAKTrek delivery system ensures that the live-cultured strains survive stomach acid and reach the intestines effectively.

A bottle of the supplements contains 30 servings with a manufacturer’s recommended daily serving size of 2 capsules.

Oweli Probiotic is manufactured in FDA-registered facilities and is GMP-compliant.

The cost for a one-month supply of Oweli Probiotic supplement is $29.99 per bottle.

4. Bulletproof — leading synbiotic for enhancing gut functionality

Bulletproof Express 3-in-1 Probiotic

Bulletproof's Express 3-in-1 Probiotic is a comprehensive formula that may promote a healthier gut function. With a blend of postbiotics, probiotics, and prebiotics, this formula has the potential to modify the gut microbiome, which is linked to UC-related issues

The product features a combination of 1 billion CFUs of probiotics, complemented by the postbiotic tributyrin, which is believed to support the production of short-chain fatty acids in the gut. It also includes a prebiotic mix that potentially feeds beneficial bacteria and the probiotic Bifidobacterium lactis, recognized for its thorough clinical studies and effectiveness in promoting a healthy gut microbiome.

Each bottle of Bulletproof Express 3-in-1 Probiotic contains 90 capsules, which equates to 30 servings. The provider advises taking 3 capsules daily.

The website indicates that Bulletproof products are subjected to stringent quality control processes. However, it does not provide explicit information regarding the specific testing or certifications.

The Express 3-in-1 Probiotic is priced at $47.95 for a one-time purchase, with a discounted rate of $33.56 under the subscription model. Customers have the option to subscribe and save 30% on their first order and 20% on subsequent orders, with the flexibility to modify or cancel the subscription at any time.

5. Culturelle® — top choice for mitigating UC-related digestive discomfort

Culturelle Digestive Daily Probiotic

Culturelle® Digestive Daily Probiotic Capsules are designed to support healthy digestion and reduce occasional digestive upset, including gas, bloating, and diarrhea.

The product contains 10 billion CFUs in each capsule and a well-studied probiotic strain, Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, which has been proven to survive harsh stomach environment and reach the intestines where it's needed.

Culturelle® Digestive Daily Probiotic capsules come in 30 and 50-serving pack sizes. The brand’s recommended dosage for occasional digestive upset is 2 capsules daily. The capsules are vegetarian and free from dairy, wheat, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, and GMOs.

According to the manufacturer, the product uses evidence-based ingredients and is third-party tested for quality.

The product is priced at $17.99 for a one-time purchase and $16.19 with a monthly subscription.

Comparison of the best probiotics for ulcerative colitis

Provider Price (cost per month)Daily doseProbiotic strainsCFU countReview
VSL#3$65.95 Determined by doctor8112.5 billionVSL#3 probiotics review
Unbloat$59.992 capsules725 billionUnbloat review
Oweli$29.992 capsules440 billion-
Bulletproof$33.56 3 capsules11 billion-
Culturelle®$17.99 2 capsules110 billion Culturelle® review

What is UC (Ulcerative Colitis)?

UC is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes inflammation and ulcers in the lining of the large intestine, also known as the colon and rectum. It usually starts between the ages of 15 and 30 and less frequently between 50 and 70 years of age. The exact cause of UC remains unknown, but it is believed to be related to an immune system malfunction. Symptoms can include diarrhea, rectal bleeding, abdominal pain, and cramping. UC affects all genders equally and can run in families.

Probiotics are strains of bacteria that can potentially improve gut health. UC is a type of inflammatory bowel disease that involves chronic inflammation of the large intestine. The human gut contains a diverse community of bacteria, and an imbalance in this community can contribute to the development of UC.

Probiotics can help manage the symptoms of UC by restoring the balance of good bacteria in the gut, reducing inflammation, and promoting gut health. However, the effectiveness of probiotics in UC management may vary among individuals, and it is essential to consult a healthcare professional before starting any probiotic regimen.

How probiotics can help with ulcerative colitis?

When an individual suffers from UC, the gut microbiota is often imbalanced, which may lead to chronic inflammation and other gut-related issues. Probiotics can help restore this balance, reduce inflammation, and promote a healthier gut environment. Some probiotic strains, such as Escherichia coli Nissle, have been shown to bring UC into remission. Since UC is a complex condition, any dietary changes, including probiotic supplementation, should be discussed with a healthcare professional.

The pros and cons of taking probiotics for ulcerative colitis

Probiotics can be one of the alternative methods for alleviating some of the UC symptoms. However, their effectiveness varies among individuals. Here is a list of pros and cons when using probiotics for UC:

ProsCons
May reduce UC symptomEffectiveness varies
Can balance gut microbiotaResearch is ongoing
May increase time between flare-upMay not be useful during flare-ups
May make flare-up symptoms less severeNot all probiotics (on the market) have a suitable quality for UC
May induce and maintain remissionMay not be suitable for those with compromised immune system

Benefits

Probiotics are beneficial for UC as they may help restore the bacterial balance, and regulate inflammation in the gut — potential causes of UC. Probiotics may also help increase the time between flare-ups and make the symptoms less severe. They are also usually an affordable option to complement the UC treatment regime. However, it's essential to consult a healthcare professional before starting any probiotic regimen for UC.

Risks and side effects

While probiotics may offer various benefits for UC, there are some cons to consider. One of the main drawbacks is that not all probiotics may be useful in providing faster remission during a flare-up of UC. Additionally, probiotic supplements are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which means that the composition and count of live bacteria may not match the label. It is recommended to consult a healthcare professional before using probiotics, especially if you have a compromised immune system or are taking any medications.

How to use probiotics for ulcerative colitis?

The best way to use probiotics for UC is to incorporate probiotic-rich foods into your diet, such as yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut. Alternatively, you can take probiotic supplements in the form of capsules, tablets, liquids, or gummies.

It’s best to consult your healthcare professional, especially if you have any conditions or using other medications. Your doctor can help you find the best probiotic for your specific needs and ensure it doesn't interfere with your current treatment plan. Doses vary depending on the specific probiotic strain and product, so follow your doctor's recommendations or the product's label instructions.

Can probiotics make ulcerative colitis worse?

Probiotics may be recommended as an adjunct therapy in UC. They are live bacteria that promote gut health by fighting off unhealthy bacteria and may help maintain remission from UC symptoms and flare-ups. In general, probiotics are unlikely to cause any harm. However, the effectiveness of probiotics in managing UC varies among individuals. While some people may find relief from UC symptoms with probiotics, others may not experience any benefits. More research is needed to determine their full effectiveness in this condition.

Best probiotics for ulcerative colitis - conclusion

In summary, selecting the most suitable probiotics for UC should be a highly individualized process, taking into account personal needs and preferences. The probiotic supplements discussed in this article may provide some benefits for managing UC and other gut-related issues. It's crucial to understand that everyone's microbiome is unique, so a tailored supplement regimen is necessary.

Seeking advice from a healthcare professional can offer you a clear direction, suggestions, and support in choosing the appropriate probiotic for managing your UC symptoms.


Explore other health benefits of probiotics

Best probiotics for constipation may increase bowel movements.

Best probiotics for IBS can help restore the balance of bacteria in the gut.

Best probiotics for women may support digestive and vaginal health.

Best probiotics for weight loss can help support weight management.

Best probiotics for kids may reduce the symptoms of eczema in children.

Best probiotics for stomach ulcers can help ease gastrointestinal issues


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