Probiotics, living microorganisms found in certain foods and supplements, confer a wide range of health benefits. They may be beneficial in managing conditions caused by the imbalance of the microbiome, such as yeast infections. When ingested, probiotics provide more of the good bacteria our bodies naturally have, fostering a healthy internal environment.
Yeast infections in the vagina — caused by an overgrowth of yeast — can lead to discomfort, burning, itching, and white discharge. Certain strains of probiotics, such as Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Lactobacillus acidophilus, have shown promise in managing yeast infections by producing substances that prevent Candida colonization, thereby keeping yeast growth in check.
Best probiotic for yeast infection: a shortlist
- Bonafide — best probiotic for reducing vaginal odor
- Culturelle — best probiotic for supporting a healthy pH balance for feminine health
- Ora — best probiotic for yeast infection prevention
- Routine — best probiotic for a balanced vaginal flora
- Ritual — best for strengthened immune system and yeast infection prevention
How to choose the best probiotic for yeast infection
|Science-backed probiotic strains
|GMP-certified, third-party tested
|Adequate dosage and price
|Price vs. quantity
|Adequate probiotic amounts
|Specific probiotic strains
|Specific for yeast infections
- Ingredient quality. Ensure the probiotics contain high-quality bacterial strains backed by science. Not all probiotics on the market have strong evidence to support their claims, so it's important to choose products with proven efficacy for the intended health condition.
- Reputable provider. Choose a brand with a good reputation known for producing high-quality supplements. Look for companies that follow good manufacturing practices (GMP) and have third-party testing or certifications to ensure product quality and safety.
- Adequate dosage and price. Consider the dosage of probiotics provided in each serving of the supplement and compare it with the price. Look for supplements that offer a good-price dosage ratio of probiotics at a reasonable price point.
- CFU. Colony Forming Units (CFU) refer to the number of viable bacteria present in each probiotic serving. Higher CFU counts indicate a higher concentration of beneficial bacteria. Ensure that the probiotics you choose have an adequate CFU count, typically in the billions, throughout the shelf life.
- Specific probiotic strains. Look for probiotic strains that specifically target yeast infections, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus rhamnosus. These strains have been shown to be effective in controlling Candida yeast overgrowth and bacterial vaginosis.
Best probiotics for yeast infection in 2024: an overview
When compiling this list, we reviewed brands offering probiotic products that may benefit individuals with a yeast infection.
Finding a product that suits specific individual needs means you are more likely to receive a positive health effect. While most probiotic supplements are similar in their suggested benefits, the composition of each of them slightly differs. This is important to consider when trying to achieve specific health goals.
Each product is labeled under a specific category highlighting its unique benefits, ingredients, and other features. The list also includes the pros and cons of each product.
1. Bonafide — best probiotic for reducing vaginal odor
Clairvee®, developed by Bonafide, is a probiotic supplement designed to support the vaginal microbiome. The product’s formulation is specifically tailored for women navigating the hormonal shifts associated with perimenopause and menopause.
The product may support the vaginal microbiome by reducing odor, itching, and discharge.
Bonafide Clairvee® contains a combination of probiotics, with 5 billion CFUs, including the live active strains Lactobacillus acidophilus BLA-14 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus BHN001, targeting the vaginal flora.
Evidence from an open-label clinical study conducted by the brand indicates that 95% of participating women reported a noticeable decrease in vaginal odor following the use of Clairvee®.
According to the manufacturer, the recommended dosage is 1 capsule per day taken orally.
Bonafide adheres to quality standards by conducting third-party testing and producing its products in a GMP-certified facility.
Bonafide Clairvee® is priced at $55.00 for a single purchase. Additionally, a subscription model is available at $39.00/month. It includes a 30% discount, making Clairvee® a financially viable choice for maintaining vaginal wellness.
2. Culturelle — best probiotic for supporting a healthy pH balance for feminine health
Culturelle Women’s 4-in-1 Protection Capsules are designed to provide comprehensive feminine care that may offer essential benefits in a single capsule for vaginal, urinary, digestive, and immune health. The product may promote a healthy vaginal microbiota to support pH balance and guard the urinary tract from unfriendly bacteria.
It can also help restore the natural balance of good bacteria in the digestive tract, where 70% of the immune system resides. Each serving delivers 15 billion CFUs, combining the clinically proven probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG with a blend of four lactobacilli commonly found in healthy women’s vaginal microbiome.
According to the website, the product's safety and efficacy are backed by clinical studies, but it requires more research on pregnant women.
Culturelle Women’s 4-in-1 Protection Capsules are vegetarian, and the recommended dosage by the provider is 1 capsule daily for optimal results.
The product is priced at $27.49 for a one-time purchase, but a subscription model is available for a discounted price of $24.74.
3. Ora — best probiotic for yeast infection prevention
Ora Organic's Lady Bugs is a specialized probiotic and prebiotic supplement designed to support optimal vaginal and urinary tract health. According to the brand, the product contains 16 billion CFUs of probiotics from 6 research-backed strains, along with organic prebiotics.
The strains used are known to support healthy pH levels in the vagina, reduce the risk of urinary tract infections, and support the healing of delicate vaginal tissues.
The recommended dosage by the manufacturer is 2 capsules within 30 minutes of mealtime, regardless of the time of day.
The ingredients include organic Jerusalem artichoke inulin, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus crispatus, Lactobacillus reuteri, Lactobacillus fermentum, and others.
Ora Organic emphasizes transparency and quality control, testing every batch of its products at third-party, accredited laboratories and publishing the results. The product is vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free, soy-free, and dairy-free.
The product is priced at $37.99 for a one-time purchase, with a 20% discount available for subscriptions.
4. Routine — best probiotic for a balanced vaginal flora
Routine Probiotics for Her is a comprehensive prebiotic-probiotic supplement designed to improve gut health, balance vaginal health, optimize metabolism, and support better mood.
According to the brand, each capsule contains 24 billion CFUs and is formulated with 5 ultra-premium strains: Bifidobacterium lactis HN019, Bifidobacterium lactis Bl-04, Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus HN001, Bifidobacterium lactis B-420, and Lactobacillus acidophilus La-14.
The product also contains organic ashwagandha, known for its stress and anxiety-relieving properties.
Routine Probiotics for Her is FDA and Health Canada compliant, and the manufacturing processes and products adhere to the highest pharmaceutical standards.
The recommended dosage on the label is 1 capsule per day, and the ingredients are non-GMO, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and major allergen-free.
The product is priced at $39.95 for a one-time purchase, but a subscription model is available for $29.95, saving an extra $10.00.
5. Ritual — best for strengthened immune system and yeast infection prevention
Ritual's Synbiotic+ is a 3-in-1 supplement designed to support a balanced gut microbiome, offering prebiotics, probiotics, and a postbiotic. The product features two of the world's most clinically-studied strains, providing 11 billion CFUs for digestive support.
According to research, a weakened immune system is the risk factor for yeast infection, and 70-80% of immune cells are present in the gut. Since Ritual is formulated with probiotics and prebiotics for their good adherence, it is a well-needed companion for fighting yeast overgrowth.
The product may also relieve occasional discomforts like bloating, gas, and diarrhea, maintain a balanced gut microbiome, support gut barrier function, and bolster immune health.
Ritual emphasizes transparency and quality control, with third-party testing and a visible supply chain. The product is vegan, gluten-free, allergen-free, and non-GMO project verified.
The recommended dosage by the company is 1 capsule daily. Synbiotic+ is priced at $54.00, with a subscription model offering additional benefits like free shipping and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Comparing the best probiotic for yeast infection
|Cost (per month)
|Bonafide Health Review
|Culturelle Probiotics Review
|Ora Probiotics Review
|Routine Probiotics Review
|Ritual Synbiotic+ Probiotics Review
How did we compile our list of the best probiotic for yeast infection
It is crucial to understand how each product is formulated and what criteria must be considered for it to be a viable option. We looked at several factors when choosing the best probiotic for yeast infection. This includes the right probiotic strains, customer reviews, the effectiveness of the supplement, and ingredient quality.
- Probiotic strains. We made sure that the provided products contained specific strains of bacteria known to help with yeast infections. We looked for certain strains of probiotics, such as Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Lactobacillus acidophilus, which have shown promise in managing yeast infections by promoting a healthy vaginal microbiota balance, thereby keeping yeast growth in check.
- Reviews. We looked at a significant number of online reviews to understand customer sentiment toward brands and their products. Also, learning about customer satisfaction was another crucial factor that we had to consider in order to find the best probiotic supplements for treating yeast infection.
- Effectiveness. We thoroughly analyzed products that contain scientifically-studied probiotic strains. This involved examining studies that substantiate the effectiveness of probiotic supplements in yeast infection. By prioritizing probiotics with scientific backing, we aimed to ensure that the chosen formulations offer meaningful benefits.
- Ingredient quality. Ensuring the formulation of probiotic ingredients in adherence to the highest quality standards is crucial for their effectiveness and safety. To meet this criterion, we specifically evaluated probiotics that are manufactured using Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). Additionally, we considered probiotics that undergo third-party testing, which involves independent laboratories verifying the purity, potency, and accuracy of labeling.
What is yeast infection?
A yeast infection, also known as vaginal candidiasis, is a fungal infection that causes irritation, discharge, and intense itchiness in the vagina and vulva. It's not considered a sexually transmitted infection but can be linked to oral-genital sex.
Most yeast infections are caused by the fungus Candida albicans, which is naturally present in the vagina. However, an imbalance due to antibiotic use, pregnancy, uncontrolled diabetes, impaired immune system, or hormonal changes can trigger yeast overgrowth.
Symptoms include itching, burning sensation during intercourse or urination, redness and swelling of the vulva, vaginal pain, rash, and unusual discharge. Severe cases or recurrent infections may require medical consultation.
Symptoms of yeast infection
A yeast infection, also referred to as vaginal candidiasis, manifests through various symptoms, which can vary from mild to moderate. Some of the symptoms include:
- Itching and irritation. This often occurs in the vagina and the vulva, the tissues at the vaginal opening.
- Burning sensation. This may be especially noticeable during sexual intercourse or while urinating.
- Redness and swelling. The vulva may become red and swollen due to the infection.
- Vaginal pain and soreness. Discomfort, including pain or soreness, can be experienced in the vagina.
- Vaginal discharge. The discharge might be thick, white, and odor-free, often resembling cottage cheese. Watery vaginal discharge is also possible.
If you experience any of these symptoms, especially if it's the first time, it's recommended to make an appointment with a healthcare provider to confirm the diagnosis and get proper treatment.
Benefits of taking probiotics for yeast infection
Probiotics can provide an array of benefits when it comes to treating yeast infection. Here is a comprehensive breakdown of some of the main ones:
Regulation of microflora
The administration of probiotics, particularly strains like Lactobacillus, plays a crucial role in maintaining the equilibrium of our body's natural microbiome, including in the vagina. It aids in preventing the excessive growth of yeast-like Candida species, which can disrupt the balance of normal microflora, thus leading to yeast infections.
Improved treatment effectiveness
There's evidence suggesting that combining antifungal treatments with probiotics amplifies the effectiveness of the treatment. Moreover, this combination may decrease the chances of recurrence, suggesting that probiotics can provide a significant advantage for women who frequently suffer from yeast infections.
Potential alternative to antifungal medications
Probiotics can offer support in managing yeast infection when antifungal medications fail to show results. By helping to control yeast overgrowth, probiotics can help manage the symptoms of yeast infections, thereby serving as a method with fewer adverse effects.
Support against yeast overgrowth
Particular strains, such as Lactobacillus rhamnosus, prove beneficial in combating yeast infections. These strains produce lactic acid that helps to keep low vaginal pH, which could inhibit the overgrowth of pathogenic yeast such as Candida.
Can you experience any side effects from probiotics?
Yes, some individuals can experience side effects from probiotics. Most commonly, probiotics can cause temporary digestive issues like bloating, gas, and diarrhea, particularly when you first start consuming them. These effects usually subside within a few days or weeks.
Some people may also experience headaches, particularly due to certain strains of probiotics that produce histamine during the fermentation process. Histamine can cause headaches in people who are sensitive to it.
Allergic reactions to probiotics are rare, but can occur in individuals who are allergic to certain bacterial strains or dairy products. Probiotic supplements are not recommended for people with weakened immune systems or serious illnesses.
How to use probiotics for yeast infection?
To use probiotics for yeast infections, you can take probiotic capsules, suppositories, or yogurt with live cultures. However, be aware that each type of probiotic may have different benefits, so it's important to select one like Lactobacillus, which has been proven to be helpful against yeast infections.
For dosage, follow the manufacturer's instructions, but make sure the recommended dose is 1-100 billion CFU of bacteria. For optimal results, consider pairing it with conventional treatments. Always consult your doctor before starting any treatment.
How long does it take for probiotics to work?
The effectiveness of probiotics for yeast infections varies among individuals. It may take around a few weeks for probiotics to help with the symptoms. It's important to note that while probiotics are helpful in promoting vaginal health, they may not ultimately clear the infection. Therefore, it's recommended to talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment options. It's also suggested to consider a combination of probiotics with antifungal medication for recurring yeast infections.
Other ways to treat yeast infection
There are several alternative ways to treat yeast infections apart from using probiotics. Being familiar with some of the other options can make it easier to choose a treatment that suits your individual needs best. There is no one-size-fits-all solution; therefore, selecting what’s right for you is essential.
- Over-the-counter treatments. Antifungal treatments, in the form of creams or pessaries, can be purchased without a prescription. They are available at pharmacies and even grocery stores. These treatments, which contain potent antifungals called azoles, can be applied externally or internally and have been shown to cure over 80% of vaginal yeast infections.
- Boric acid. It is a powerful antiseptic and can help clear up yeast infections that are resistant to other remedies. Boric acid vaginal suppositories may be used in combination with other medications. However, it should not be used by pregnant women or on injured skin to ensure no side effects.
- Dietary practice. A balanced diet can be a crucial factor for preventing and reducing the symptoms of yeast infections. The Candida diet limits sugar and yeast intake while incorporating anti-inflammatory foods and supplements. The goal is to create an environment hostile to Candida yeast overgrowth. Fermented foods, such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, and others, can be an important addition to the candida prevention diet.
Our conclusion of the best probiotics for yeast infection
In conclusion, it is important to consider individual needs and preferences when it comes to finding the best probiotic for treating yeast infection. The provided list of probiotic products in this article offers various benefits that may alleviate yeast infection symptoms. Everyone's situation is different, so it may require a consultation with your gynecologist to find the probiotic that works best for each individual.
Seeking advice from a healthcare expert can prove valuable in obtaining tailored recommendations and choosing an appropriate probiotic to address your yeast infection symptoms.
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Which probiotics are best for yeast infection?
Culturelle Women’s 4-in-1 Protection Capsules offer comprehensive feminine care, including four essential benefits in a single capsule for vaginal, urinary, digestive, and immune health. The product promotes a healthy vaginal microbiota through pH balance and guards the urinary tract from unfriendly bacteria.
Can probiotics get rid of a yeast infection?
Yes. Probiotics, specifically those containing Lactobacillus species, have shown potential in combating yeast infections. A healthy vaginal microbiome is dominated by Lactobacillus species, which inhibit the growth of pathogenic microorganisms and promote a balanced vaginal microbiome. Clinical studies on probiotic lactobacilli for vaginal infections have shown promise in treating the symptoms.
Can too many probiotics cause a yeast infection?
No. Probiotics are beneficial in preventing the overgrowth of the fungus Candida, which causes yeast infections. Rather than causing these infections, probiotics often help in managing and preventing them. In fact, probiotics have been found to be effective in enhancing the efficacy of antifungal treatments and reducing recurrence in women with repeated yeast infections.
Can bad gut health cause yeast infections?
Yes. Poor gut health can lead to yeast infections. When the gut microbiome is compromised, inflammation and harmful bacterial overgrowth may ensue. These harmful bacteria can then travel to the vaginal area and disrupt its delicate balance, leading to yeast infections.
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- Frontiers. Use of probiotic lactobacilli in the treatment of vaginal infections: In vitro and in vivo investigations.
- Cochrane Library. Probiotics for vulvovaginal candidiasis in non‐pregnant women.
- Microorganisms. Warding Off Recurrent Yeast and Bacterial Vaginal Infections: Lactoferrin and Lactobacilli.
- Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Vaginitis: Making Sense of Over-the-Counter Treatment Options.