Do you find it challenging to sleep with your CPAP machine? Read this

Do you find it challenging to sleep with your CPAP machine? Read this

People with sleep apnea may physically breathe easier thanks to CPAP equipment.

Once you are diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machines are the most common treatment prescribed by physicians. These machines use air pressure to move any obstacles in the throat out of the way, allowing for a more open airway. Millions of people around the world use CPAP machines to help with their OSA and its symptoms. 

Getting used to CPAP machines online can be a bit of a challenge and it may take some trial and error. Common complaints include the discomfort of the CPAP masks and the air pressure. CPAP Direct Australia has many CPAP masks and devices, such as the Nasal Pillow Mask and the Nasal Mask, that can be used to alleviate those issues. Our article provides more information and advice on how to adjust to your CPAP machine.

What Do People Have to Say About CPAP Machine Pain?

CPAP machines are devices used in Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy for the treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. We have gathered a variety of CPAP machine complaints from different sources. Though every case is unique, CPAP machines offer the best approach to gaining back your focus, energy, health, and mood. However, some users may experience discomfort while adjusting to the air pressure of the CPAP device. 

To help you sleep better, we will focus on the different issues associated with the CPAP device, including loud noise, drafty CPAP masks, the inability to move while wearing the CPAP mask, and the pressure of the CPAP machine. Most CPAP masks, including the Nasal Pillow Mask and the Nasal Mask, are available at CPAP Direct and other CPAP devices can be purchased from CPAP Australia.

Advice for Acclimating to CPAP Machines

If you or your doctor decide CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) is the best treatment for obstructive sleep apnea, it is essential to stay committed to healthy sleep. This means that during the initial few weeks of using a CPAP machine, you should approach bedtime with a positive attitude. Visit to read about Common CPAP masks you can find in Australia.

The best advice the internet has to offer when starting to use CPAP machines is to take your new routine in stride. Staying upbeat is key; any little setback can be interpreted as an excuse to abandon the therapy altogether. Don’t worry though – there are plenty of ways to make this transition smoother. CPAP Australia, CPAP direct, CPAP treatment, CPAP device, CPAP masks, nasal pillow mask, nasal mask, most CPAP masks and air pressure are all excellent resources to consider when selecting the right CPAP machine or pressure machine.

Try It First Before Bed

When you’ve been diagnosed with sleep apnea, the common treatment is to get a CPAP machine. The right CPAP machine for you depends on your needs, and there are two pressure settings to choose from: one pressure or two pressure. APAP machines and BIPAP machines both have two pressure settings. For those who need a lower pressure, a Bilevel machine is a good option. Your sleep doctor will be able to help you find the right pressure settings to ensure you have a good night’s sleep. 

You must breathe differently while using a CPAP mask than you normally do; so you should keep your lips shut and exhale a little more forcefully while using the mask. To help you adjust to this new routine, we advise going to bed an hour earlier during your first week and distracting yourself with TV or music. This will allow your body to adapt and avoid any skin irritation.

Use a CPAP machine that is quiet.

In the 1980s, CPAP machines were developed and soon after, gained a reputation for being loud. However, modern research does not back up this reputation. There are now CPAP machines available with the right pressure settings, so noisy machines are no longer an issue. If you are diagnosed with sleep apnea, your sleep doctor may suggest a CPAP, APAP, or BiPAP machine

These machines can be adjusted to the pressure that works best for you, as well as allowing you to adjust the sleep position and skin irritation. A BiLevel machine has two pressure settings, a higher one for inhalation and a lower one for exhalation, which helps you get a good night’s sleep. An APAP machine adjusts the pressure automatically with one setting, which is also a common treatment for many sleep apnea sufferers.

Put on a mask and diffuser.

CPAP users often place too much emphasis on the machine that is best for them and too little on the mask that feels most comfortable. This is an issue that needs to be addressed, as the mask can make a huge difference in one’s sleep therapy. With adjustable straps, higher pressures, and air diffusers, the right mask can help remedy many of the issues that can arise from CPAP therapy, such as snoring and breathing problems caused by sleep apnea. 

The F&P EsonTM 2 Nasal Mask is one of the quietest masks on the market and has received many accolades. If you are looking for the best mask to ensure a comfortable and successful sleep therapy experience, it is important to speak with your doctor and try different masks to find the one that fits you best.

Have a Mask Fitted Before Purchasing It

People come in various sizes, so it can be difficult to find a CPAP mask that fits your face properly. Investing in the right mask is the most important step you can take to make your sleep therapy more comfortable. At Sleeplay, we offer CPAP masks with a 30-day trial period so you can find the best fit for you. Another option is to ask your doctor to fit you with different masks before leaving their clinic. There are many types of masks available, such as those with adjustable straps and higher pressure machines, that can help with snoring, apnea, and other breathing issues. CPAP machines and masks are essential for successful treatment and quality sleeping.

Use a mask that provides the most mobility possible.

If you have been diagnosed with a sleep disorder, one of the most common treatments is the use of a CPAP machine. Finding the right machine can be essential for a good night’s sleep. Philips Respironics DreamWear CPAP Masks are a great option as they provide the wearer with the mobility to move around throughout the night. 

Your sleep doctor will base their recommendations on the results of your sleep test but it’s important to be knowledgeable about the subject for your own comfort and peace of mind. CPAP machines are adjustable and can be set to either one pressure setting, or two pressure settings depending on your diagnosis. 

APAP and BiPAP machines are also available with two pressure settings. Skin irritation can occur from CPAP machines, so be sure to talk to your doctor about the best options for your lower pressure settings.

Make use of a CPAP cleaning system.

CPAP machines are widely used to treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) in Australia and around the world. Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) therapy is a type of treatment in which air pressure is applied to the airway through a cpap device, such as a nasal mask, nasal pillow mask, or most cpap masks. 

It is essential to keep your CPAP machine in good working order and CPAP Direct suggest using a specialized CPAP cleaning device or cleaning the CPAP on a weekly basis to avoid the accumulation of mold and bacteria. Cleaning the humidification tank, hose, and mask on the exterior every two weeks and the interior every week is recommended by sleep physicians. The Sleep8 Cleaning Companion System is a quick, easy, and comprehensive way to clean your CPAP supplies.

Take a Break Once in a While

Using CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machines, CPAP treatment, and CPAP masks, such as most CPAP masks and nasal pillow masks, is an effective way to treat obstructive sleep apnea. Although it is recommended to use the CPAP machine every day, it is not necessary to use it religiously. 

During the first month of CPAP therapy, it is best to use the device continuously, but after that, it is perfectly acceptable to take a break for one or two nights. Additionally, the CPAP device and the air pressure it produces helps to reduce the size of the throat, which helps to improve the sleep apnea condition. Therefore, if you have been using the CPAP machine for some time, it is safe to take a break from the CPAP device, such as CPAP Australia or CPAP Direct, as long as you do not do so during the first month of therapy.

Think About Your Face Hair

If you are sporting a beard and have obstructive sleep apnea, you may need to be more discerning when looking for a CPAP machine and mask. Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) treatment works by delivering air at a prescribed pressure into your airways. Australia is home to a variety of CPAP devices, but the most common CPAP masks are the nasal pillow mask, the nasal mask, and the full-face mask. Unfortunately, these CPAP masks are not a one-size-fits-all item, so searching at CPAP Direct for the right one for your needs is essential. 


CPAP machines are a continuous positive airway pressure device used to treat obstructive sleep apnea. They can be essential for many people to lead a regular existence. CPAP therapy in Australia is widely used and highly effective for those with sleep apnea. To invigorate daily routines, finding the right CPAP mask is key. 

Most CPAP masks come in two styles, nasal pillow masks and nasal masks, and they provide air pressure to the user. It is important to choose the right mask for optimal health benefits and to avoid making blunders when starting CPAP treatment. CPAP Direct provides a wide range of CPAP machines and CPAP masks to suit any individual needs.

Common CPAP masks you can find in Australia

Common CPAP masks you can find in Australia

There are three main types of CPAP masks available in Australia.

1. CPAP masks with a whole face

CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) therapy is a very popular form of treatment for sleep apnea and other breathing-related conditions. The most common CPAP device is the CPAP mask online, which covers the nose, mouth, and part of the face to help provide a strong seal and prevent air leaks. However, some users of the CPAP mask may find it uncomfortable and claustrophobic, and its size can make it difficult to watch TV or read.

 There are many different types of CPAP masks available, from the full-face mask to the nasal pillow mask, and CPAP Direct Australia can help you choose the most suitable CPAP mask for you. CPAP therapy is a very effective form of treatment for those suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and with the right CPAP device and mask, you can be well on your way to a better night’s sleep.

2. CPAP nasal masks

For those who prefer to read in bed, CPAP machines (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) can make it difficult, especially if they are using a full-face machine, as this can obstruct their line of sight. However, thanks to the more compact design of CPAP nasal masks, which do not cover the entire nose, it is possible to read with ease. CPAP is a popular treatment for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) and Sleep Apnea, and CPAP Australia, CPAP Direct, and CPAP Device offer a range of CPAP masks, from the most compact Nasal Pillow mask to the larger Nasal mask. CPAP therapy is a safe and effective way to treat OSA and Sleep Apnea, and with the use of a Pressure Machine, air pressure is able to be controlled, making CPAP treatment more comfortable. Visit to read about Answered questions on CPAP Masks.

3. CPAP nasal pillows

If you are looking for CPAP masks online, a nasal pillow mask is a great option. With the advancement of technology, it has become necessary to think outside the box and develop new methods to deliver continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) directly to the user’s airways. Nasal pillows are the answer. These small objects attach to the two tubes of the CPAP machine, and the open end of the tubes can be placed directly into the nose to help avoid obstruction while sleeping. CPAP treatment is used to treat obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and other sleep apnea issues. CPAP Direct and CPAP Australia are two great sources to purchase CPAP masks or devices. Most CPAP masks are designed to deliver air pressure from a CPAP machine to the user’s airway.

What Factors Must You Take Into Account Before Buying a CPAP Mask Online?

Now that we are aware of the many kinds of CPAP masks that can be purchased, we should consider the following aspects before making a choice and buying a CPAP machine.


When trying to choose a CPAP machine for treating Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), it is important to take into account what makes you comfortable. Ensure that the Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) device seals are secure and that you can wear them for long periods of time without any pain.

CPAP therapy is available in Australia and involves using air pressure from the CPAP machine and a CPAP mask. Most CPAP masks come in either a nasal pillow mask or a nasal mask, and CPAP Direct can provide you with all the necessary CPAP supplies you need.

Sleeping practices

How you sleep will also have an impact on the machine you choose. If you often toss and turn while you sleep, the standard machine won’t work.

Size and Sealing of the Mask

Take into account the mask’s size when making a CPAP machine purchase. A suitable machine should be selected depending on the pressure and fit.

Information on Therapy and Equipment

If you are advised to start CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) therapy for your obstructive sleep apnea, you will need a CPAP machine that can tolerate the air pressure. Most CPAP masks will have specifications in accordance with the CPAP device and you can decide which mask to use depending on that. CPAP Direct in Australia offers a wide selection of CPAP masks, ranging from the Nasal Pillow Mask to the Nasal Mask.

Follow these five easy steps to get the best-fitting CPAP machine:

Recognize how to sleep

Finding the right CPAP machine for the first time is an important step in CPAP therapy for those with obstructive sleep apnea. Some individuals breathe through their lips when sleeping, some never and some switch between the two. If you are unsure of your sleeping pattern, ask someone who knows you well, such as your bedmate or a family member.

 Once you are aware of your sleeping pattern, you can consider the different types of CPAP machines available, as well as other CPAP masks and devices such as nasal pillow masks and nasal masks. CPAP Direct, a leading provider of CPAP Australia, offers a range of CPAP devices and most CPAP masks to help you find the right air pressure machine for your CPAP treatment.

Do you Alternate Your Position While You Sleep?

If you have been diagnosed with sleep apnea, one of the most common treatments is to use a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. When choosing the right CPAP machine for you, it is important to be aware of your sleep position and pressure settings. If you frequently change positions during sleep, the seal between the machine and your face may break, causing air to shoot out the side, which can be painful. Additionally, this could mean you need a new machine. Depending on your needs, you may want to consider a bilevel or BIPAP machine, which has two pressure settings, or an APAP machine, which automatically adjusts the pressure to deliver a good night’s sleep. Additionally, you may want to consider a machine with a lower pressure setting to avoid skin irritation. It is best to consult with a sleep doctor to determine the best options for you.

Do you inhale or exhale via your nose or mouth?

If you exclusively breathe through your nose, a nasal or nasal cushion CPAP (Continuous Positive Airway Pressure) machine may be the most comfortable choice for you to treat Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). However, if you like to breathe through your mouth and nose while you sleep, then you should consider looking at full-face or hybrid CPAP machines. Hybrid CPAP machines come with both a mouthpiece attachment and a nasal cushion attachment. Alternatively, you can still use a nasal machine or nasal cushion CPAP mask with a chinstrap to keep your lips together while you breathe. Most CPAP masks are designed to fit the user’s face and provide air pressure as part of the CPAP treatment. At CPAP Direct, we offer a range of CPAP masks in Australia, from a Nasal Pillow Mask to a Nasal Mask, as well as other CPAP devices and machines.

Choose the CPAP machine size that you need.

Finding the right CPAP mask for your CPAP therapy can be confusing for CPAP newbies. Most CPAP masks come in a wide range of sizes, from extra-small to extra-large, so it may be difficult to determine the size you need. Many CPAP machine pages offer a PDF fitting guide so you can check the size you need before making a purchase. However, it is important to remember that the fitting guide is specific to the type of machine, so you should not use one CPAP machine fitting guide to determine the size of a different kind of machine. also offers a link to the fitting guide for most nasal and full-face masks. CPAP therapy is an effective way to treat obstructive sleep apnea and other sleep apnea conditions. CPAP machines provide continuous positive airway pressure, which helps keep the airways open during sleep with air pressure. CPAP Direct, CPAP Australia, and CPAP Device are some of the leading providers of CPAP machines and masks.

Purchase a New CPAP Mask

After measuring your face and following the CPAP Machine fitting guide, it’s time to purchase a CPAP Device. If you can, get a few different CPAP Masks (and make sure you purchase Return Insurance so you can return any used masks for a full refund). Alternatively, it’s best to follow professional advice and only buy CPAP Masks with free return insurance. Remember, if you don’t have Return Insurance from, you won’t be able to return a used CPAP Machine. When your new CPAP Masks arrive, try each one on and then adjust the tightness until you feel comfortable. CPAP Therapy is a form of Continuous Positive Airway Pressure treatment for Obstructive Sleep Apnea, and CPAP Australia offers many types of CPAP Masks, including a Nasal Pillow Mask, Nasal Mask, and most CPAP Masks from CPAP Direct.

Mutaflor: Probiotic Containing Escherichia Coli Nissle 1917

Mutaflor: Probiotic Containing Escherichia Coli Nissle 1917

Mutaflor is the only probiotic supplement on the market containing the friendly bacterium Escherichia coli Nissle 1917. This is a non-pathogenic helpful bacterium, which is NOT to be confused with the disease-causing Escherichia Coli 0157.

The strain contained in this product, Escherichia coli Nissle 1917, is named after the German doctor Professor Alfred Nissle, who first isolated the bacterium in 1917 during the First World War.


In the United States and Canada, Mutaflor is available in capsule form. The capsules contain:

  • E. coli strain Nissle 1917 (2.5–25 x 109 viable cells (CFU))
  • Talc
  • Methacrylic acid-methyl methacrylate copolymer (1:1)
  • Macrogol
  • Dibuytl phthalate
  • Glycerol
  • Titanium dioxide
  • Iron (III) hydroxide oxide monohydrate
  • Gelatin
  • Beeswax (yellow)
  • Carnauba wax
  • Shellac
  • Purified water

The capsules are free from gluten, milk proteins and lactose so are suitable for those with allergies or intolerances to these substances. The product does contain gelatin though so is not suitable for vegetarians.

It is also available as a high-strength capsule and as a suspension for children in Germany.

Clinical Evidence Supporting Mutaflor

Since it was first isolated, the bacterium contained in Mutaflor has been studied extensively and has been shown in scientific research to help numerous conditions. You can also read about Answered questions on CPAP Masks by clicking here.

As well as being able to colonize the gut, biologically fit and active against disease-causing agents known as pathogens1, Escherichia coli Nissle 1917 has been shown in scientific studies to be of benefit for both inflammatory bowel as well as functional bowel disease:

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

  • Pouchitis: Induction and maintenance of remission2.
  • Ulcerative Colitis: Studies concluded that the use of Mutaflor with mezalasine was effective as a treatment for ulcerative colitis in maintaining remission3,4,5.
  • Crohn’s Disease: Fewer relapses in Crohn’s Disease patients taking Mutaflor versus control group (33.3% versus 63.6%)6.
  • Pseudomembranous colitis (also known as antibiotic-associated diarrhea and often caused by the bacterium Clostridium Difficile or C. Diff): Helpful when combined with intestinal lavage, otherwise known as colonic hydrotherapy or colonic irrigation7.

Functional Bowel Disorders

  • Diverticular Disease: Pilot study concluded that treatment with Mutaflor was helpful in reducing symptoms in diverticulitis8.
  • Diarrhea: Mutaflor normalized acute diarrhea more quickly than a placebo9.
  • Chronic Constipation: Research concluded Mutaflor was as effective as the laxative lactulose10 and it also increased the number of bowel movements in chronic idiopathic constipation11.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Significant improvement in stool frequency was observed as well as a marked improvement in other symptoms such as abnormal urge, flatulence and abdominal fullness12.


Scientific studies suggest that this probiotic bacterium may be beneficial for a good number of conditions. The capsules are covered in a hard enteric coating to ensure that the friendly bacteria contained inside survive the stomach acid unharmed and are alive and viable when they reach the bowel, where they set to work.

The product can also be taken with or without food and is suitable for use as a long term therapy. According to the manufacturer of the product, Ardeypharm, the product can be taken with certain antibiotics WITHOUT loss of effectiveness. These antibiotics are those that are directed against gram-positive bacteria and include:

  • Clindamycin
  • Erythromycin
  • Metronidazole
  • Penicillin G
  • Quinupristin/Dalfopristin
  • Rifampin
  • Teicoplanin
  • Vancomycin
  • Cefsulodin

Antibiotics that are directed against gram-negative bacteria will, however, render the product less effective.

Whilst the product should be kept cool by means of refrigeration, it can be kept at room temperature for short periods of up to 72 hours without any loss of potency. This makes it suitable for taking on short trips away.


Mutaflor is a Probiotic Containing Escherichia coli Nissle 1917

Compared to many other probiotic products, Mutaflor has a short shelf life of between three and six months when kept under refrigeration. Please don’t buy in bulk – you will waste your money.

The product also contains a good many additional ingredients such as fillers and preservatives, which may make it difficult to tolerate for the more sensitive patients. The hard enteric capsule also makes it almost impossible to open up the capsule to try just a small amount of the product to begin with. Very sensitive individuals may thus find that the dose of beneficial bacteria contained in a whole capsule may provoke side effects such as gas, changes in stool frequency and nausea in the initial stages of therapy.

In terms of cost Mutaflor is quite expensive especially when compared fairly (i.e. in terms of bacterial numbers) to the price of high potency probiotic products such as VSL3 and Custom Probiotics. Have a look at our cost comparison page for more details.

Our Evaluation

Mutaflor probiotic supplements contain the beneficial bacteria Escherichia coli Nissle 1917

We believe that Mutaflor products contain a helpful bacterium, which may be beneficial to many people. The product does, however, contain only one type of beneficial bacteria and also contains a good many additional ingredients. As a result we have scored the product as 3/5 – essentially a good product but with some limitations that may make it unsuitable for sensitive patients.

Where Can I Buy Mutaflor?

In the USA Mutaflor is available from

In Canada, the product is available from the US distributor Medical Futures.

If you reside in Europe, you can purchase Mutaflor from those German Internet drugstores, which ship within Europe.

Whilst Mutaflor should be stored under refrigeration, a short interruption of refrigeration for shipping should not affect the potency of the product. Be sure though to select a drugstore that uses ice packs for transportation and avoid ordering at the height of summer. Try also to place your order at the beginning of the week so that your Mutaflor does not end up in a warehouse over the weekend.

What is a Fructooligosaccharide?

What is a Fructooligosaccharide?

A fructooligosaccharide (also written fructo-oligosaccharide) is a carbohydrate, which is made out of a short chain of fructose molecules. It is also classed as an oligosaccharide; oligo meaning few and saccharide, sugar. Fructooligosaccharides are also sometimes called oligofructose. Often the term is abbreviated to the letters FOS.

Together with inulin fiber, fructooligosaccharides are probably most recognized for their prebiotic qualities.

They are very similar but not identical to inulin: the difference being in their chemical structures. Fructo-oligosaccharide chains of molecules are shorter than inulin chains.

Where Can I Find FOS?

You can find FOS in certain natural foods including:

  • Bananas
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Chicory
  • Sunchokes or Jerusalem artichokes
  • Yacón
  • Barley
  • Wheat

Of these foods the sunchoke or Jerusalem artichoke and its relative, the yacón have the highest concentrations of FOS.

You will also find that fructo-oligosaccharide or oligofructose, as it is also known, is added to many processed foods, mainly as a prebiotic or fiber supplement but also as a sweetener.

This type of FOS is not natural. Most is manufactured using a chemical process, in which fungal enzymes are added to white sugar (sucrose), acting upon it and turning it into FOS. Some fructooligosaccharides are also made by the hydrolysis (breaking down) of inulin from chicory. FOS is becoming increasingly popular as a prebiotic and is now added to many types of processed foods in the US. You may already have come across this additive in the foods you buy. As a prebiotic, FOS is very similar in terms of properties to inulin. It can be considered beneficial to your health as it:

  • Is virtually undigested by the human digestive system so arrives in the colon unaltered, providing a food source forbeneficial bacteria
  • Has low calorific value.
  • Increases the population of bifidobacteria in the colon.1,2
  • Acts as a non-digestible fiber in the diet and so can help relieve constipation.

Additionally FOS has been shown to:

  • Enhance magnesium absorption.3
  • Promote calcium absorption.4

Like inulin fiber, FOS appears to be a good thing. Before you decide to try it though, you should be aware of its side-effects.

What Are the Side Effects of Taking a Fructooligosaccharide?

Before you decide that fructooligosaccharides are for you, you should be aware that they:

  • Have been shown in some scientific studies to increase the growth of “bad” bacteria such as Klebsiella Pneumonia and other less-friendly organisms such as E. Coli and many Clostridium species5,6. Klebsiella Pneumonia is associated with the auto-immune disease Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) and also worryingly is becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics both in the US and elsewhere.
  • Are likely to cause an increase in gas, abdominal discomfort and bloating if taken in large quantities.

Should I Take Fructooligosaccharides?

It is clear then that FOS has both advantages and disadvantages. Should you take it and if so how should you take it?

Given that fructooligosaccharides appear to be able to feed less friendly organisms in the colon, we think it is prudent to avoid high quantities of FOS if your digestive flora is very unbalanced.

Large amounts of FOS are usually found in supplements such as probiotics, stand-alone fructooligosaccharide supplements or processed foods. Natural foods contain small amounts of fructo-oligosaccharides in a less concentrated form and, depending on your situation, you may be able to manage these lesser amounts.

Gut dysbiosis, intestinal candida and food intolerance symptoms are sure signs that you have a gut flora imbalance, so if this is you, be sure to avoid foods and supplements with added FOS. If you are in this situation and are taking a

probiotic supplement to help you re-balance your digestive flora, be sure to choose one which is free from FOS and other prebiotics. Also if you have Ankylosing Spondylitis then high quantities of fructooligosaccharides are not for you.

If you are free of these ailments then FOS may be of help to you. Have a word with your physician before you begin and remember to start with small quantities only and ramp up slowly!

Where Can I Buy Fructooligosaccharides (FOS)?

You can buy FOS in supplement form as a stand-alone product or combined with probiotics.

Internet retailer also supplies a fantastic range of stand-alone FOS supplements as well as probiotics containing FOS. Their international shipping rates are also very reasonable. Click here to browse their store and receive $5 USD off your first purchase.

What Are Prebiotics?

What Are Prebiotics?

Prebiotics are non-digestible foods or food ingredients, which enter our colons un-altered by the digestive process, serving as an energy and growth source for the beneficial bacteria that live in our large intestine. In other words, prebiotics are food for the friendly bacteria in your intestines.

Types of Prebiotics

There are numerous different prebiotics currently on the market. In the US, the most common ones in use include:

  • Inulin, sometimes also known as inulin fiber
  • Fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS)
  • Galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS)
  • Lactulose

These substances have been the subject of numerous studies. Most of this research focuses on inulin, FOS and GOS and these substances, with their relatively long history of safe use, are now generally regarded as safe1,2.

More recently new prebiotics have become available from Japan. These include:

  • Isomalto-oligosaccharides (ISO)
  • Soy-oligosaccharides (SOS)
  • Xylo-oligosaccharides (XOS)
  • Lactosucrose (LS)
  • Pectic-oligosaccharides

These newer compounds have been studied to varying degrees in laboratory test tubes (in vitro), mainly in animal feeding studies. These novel prebiotic substances are not widely available.

What Are The Advantages of Prebiotics?

Garlic and Onions are Good Sources of Prebiotics
Garlic & Onions: Good
Sources of Prebiotics

Prebiotics feed the friendly bacteria in our large intestine and so help good bacteria to survive and thrive. The general consensus is that prebiotics help to improve the intestinal probiotic balance in our intestines by feeding the probiotic bacteria. In this way prebiotics are thought to be indirectly beneficial to our health.

Prebiotics not only serve as nourishment, strengthening our all important probiotic intestinal flora, they also slow down the activity, growth and metabolism of the “unhelpful” microbes, with which they have to compete for survival.

Prebiotics are also:

  • Easy to store. Most do not require refrigeration
  • Readily available in natural forms in your local grocery store
  • Excellent value for money
  • Easy to include in your normal diet – in fact you may already unknowingly be eating several excellent sources of prebiotics!

What Are The Disadvantages of Prebiotics?

In terms of disadvantages, a side effect of prebiotics is that you may experience temporary gastro-intestinal problems such as increased gas and/or bloating when you begin taking them or if your intake of these substances is particularly high. One way to avoid such a scenario is to begin by taking only a small amount of prebiotic and then gradually to increase your intake over a number of weeks.

In theory prebiotics are supposed to feed only friendly bacteria. However, in cases where the digestive flora has become unbalanced, they also appear to support the growth of unhelpful bacteria. If you know your digestive flora is unbalanced or are experiencing symptoms of food intolerance, intestinal dysbiosis or an overgrowth of Candida Albicans, be advised that prebiotics may exacerbate your symptoms, worsening your overall situation. Indeed, Gastroenterologist, Professor John Hunter, of the Gastroenterology Research Unit, Addenbrookes Hospital, UK, advises his food intolerant patients to avoid prebiotics3.

Where Can I Find Prebiotics?

If you are keen to try prebiotics, you can find them in:

Natural Foods

Many natural foods are rich in prebiotics AND are very easy to find at your local grocery store! These include:


  • Tomatoes
  • Sunchokes or Jerusalem artichokes
  • Onions
  • Chicory
  • Greens (especially dandelion greens but also spinach, collard greens, chard, kale, mustard greens, and others)
  • Asparagus
  • Garlic
  • Leeks


  • Berries
  • Bananas

Whole Grains:

  • Wheat
  • Oatmeal
  • Barley
  • Flaxseed


  • Lentils
  • Kidney beans
  • Chickpeas
  • Navy beans
  • White beans
  • Black beans

And breast milk!

Including natural prebiotic-rich foods in your diet is the most cost effective way of adding prebiotics to your diet. Naturally-occurring prebiotics in food are also stable and they survive the cooking process. This makes them really easy and convenient to include in your diet.

Processed Foods

Increasingly prebiotics are being added to many types of processed foods such as commercial yogurt and dairy drinks, nutrition and meal replacement bars, “green foods”, functional wafers, cereals and cereal bars as well as infant foods and formulas. You can buy many of these foods at your local grocery store.

Be aware, however, that many of these foods may be high in sugar and/or salt and so may not always be as healthy as they first appear.

Also many processed foods such as canned beans contain prebiotics but may not be labeled as such.

Buying specific prebiotic processed foods can be an expensive way of getting prebiotics into your diet.

Nutritional Supplements

Prebiotics can also be purchased as a supplement, either as a stand-alone product such as a pure fructooligosaccharide (FOS) supplement or as an enhancement to a probiotic supplement. Probiotics with added prebiotics are easy to find. Examples include Culturelle and HMF probiotics as well as the high potency probiotics Therbiotic Complete (Klaire Laboratories) and Maximum Support Probiotic Formula (Brain Child Nutritionals).

Remember that prebiotics work in conjunction with probiotics so to get best benefit take a probiotic too. And last of all, a final word about prebiotics… there are no official guidelines as to the optimum daily dose of prebiotics so if you do decide to try prebiotics, be sure to consult your physician before beginning to ensure your intake is sensible for your situation.

What Is Pouchitis?

What Is Pouchitis?

Pouchitis affects those, typically with ulcerative colitis, who have undergone ileal pouch-anal anastomosis (also known as j-pouch surgery), to create a surgical alternative to the colon. Pouchitis occurs when this surgically created pouch, known as an ileal-anal pouch or J-pouch, becomes inflamed. This condition affects approximately thirty-two percent of patients with an ileoanal pouch. The longer the time since the pouch was created, the greater the likelihood of the pouch becoming inflamed. The symptoms include:

  • Bloody diarrhea
  • More frequent bowel movements
  • Discomfort in passing stools
  • Cramping abdominal pain
  • Fever

Pouchitis Treatment

The condition is usually treated with antibiotics. Immunosuppressant drugs may also be used.

That antibiotics prove useful in treating this condition indicates that bacteria are likely to play a role in pouchitis.

Evidence from clinical experience also supports this theory, concluding that the disorder “appears to be associated with high concentrations of bacteria”1.

Additionally, sufferers have been shown to have decreased levels of the beneficial bacteria lactobacilli and bifidobacteria in their colons, more of the less helpful bacteria Clostridium perfringens, as well as species such as fungi that were not found in controls2. As a result, the possible role of probiotics to restore bacterial balance and treat this disorder is receiving increased interest in the scientific community.

Evidence for Probiotics in the Treatment of Pouchitis

Although it must be said that research is in its early days, initial evidence for the use of probiotics in the treatment of ileal-anal pouch inflammation is promising. Numerous different probiotic formulations have been used in these studies. The probiotic supplement VSL3 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, which is also marketed under the name Culturelle probiotic products, have proved to be useful in helping pouchitis patients.

The probiotic supplement VSL3 has been shown to be of benefit to pouchitis patients in two double-blind placebo controlled trials. In the first trial of thirty-six patients with recurrent or refractory pouchitis (i.e. that which does not respond to antibiotic treatment), sixteen received the probiotic supplement VSL3, whilst the remaining twenty took a placebo. Of the patients who took the probiotic supplement, 85% of sufferers had not experienced a relapse after one year of therapy compared to only 6% of those taking the placebo3.

In the second trial of twenty-three patients with mild, active pouchitis, 69% of those who took VSL3 for a four week period achieved remission4.

Several other research projects have used different probiotic species with pouchitis patients.

A trial using Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (often marketed as Culturelle) indicated that this probiotic was useful if given immediately following initial j-pouch or ileal-anal pouch surgery. This trial concluded that therapy with between ten and twenty billion CFUs of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG could delay the first onset of pouchitis for up to three years5.

Likewise a different scientific project using Lactobacillus acidophilus with Bifidobacterium lactis concluded that patients who consumed Cultura, a product containing these probiotics, over a four-week period, did show a decrease in their Pouchitis Disease Activity Index (PDAI) scores. These changed from a level considered to be diagnostic for pouchitis to one which is considered not active for pouchitis. The probiotic therapy however did not change either the mucosal inflammation of the pouch or the pouch blood flow6.

However a research trial using Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG for acute, active pouchitis did not show any therapeutic benefit from using probiotics, though the researchers did concede that the use of this probiotic had indeed positively influenced the pouch bacterial flora7.

Should I Try Probiotics for Pouchitis?

The study of probiotics for pouchitis is very new, but it does seem that probiotics may be useful in:

  • Achieving remission after treatment with antibiotics.
  • Delaying the onset of the initial bout of pouchitis.

There is, however, to date not enough evidence to suggest that probiotics are of use in treating acute, severe pouchitis – more research is needed into this aspect and indeed into the clinical use of probiotics for pouchitis in general. Future evidence, the existing data in this area as well as the growing body of evidence supporting the use of probiotics in ulcerative colitis, may indeed lead to more mainstream use of probiotics for pouchitis in the future.

In the meantime though, if you think from reading this page that probiotics could be of use in your situation, be sure to consult your physician before you begin. Ensure too that you take the same strains and quantities that have been proven to be of use for pouchitis.

Baby Probiotics

Baby Probiotics

What are They?

You may have noticed baby probiotics in grocery and drug stores when you’ve been out shopping. In fact in the US, there is an ever-increasing range of baby probiotic supplements. There’s also a growing number of processed infant foods (infant formula, jarred infant food, baby cereals, and snacks) that are fortified with probiotics.

But what are probiotics?

Probiotics are live, friendly bacteria, which can provide adults, children, and babies alike with health benefits.

Can Babies Take Probiotics Too?

The good news is that babies can also take probiotics. Indeed probiotic supplements have been scientifically shown to help infants!

If you want to find out more information about baby probiotics, or infant probiotics as they are also known, then read on!

You’ll find lots of details here on baby probiotics including scientific evidence supporting their use as well as answers to those frequently asked questions that may be niggling you.

Doesn’t My Baby Already Have Friendly Bacteria?

The short answer to this question is yes!Baby Probiotics May Help Keep your Infant Healthy

Whilst in your womb, your baby’s intestinal tract is sterile – and so its free from bacteria.

From birth though your baby begins the process of acquiring the friendly bacteria in the gut that play such a critical role in health and wellness.

How your child is born, strongly influences what kind of bacteria your child will acquire.

Infants that are born vaginally begin accumulating beneficial bacteria including Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, Escherichia coli (commonly abbreviated to E. coli) and Enterococcus in the birth canal with the very process of birth. These bacteria form the foundations of a healthy digestive flora and originate from healthy maternal vaginal and fecal flora.

Babies born via caesarian on the other hand, receive a different mix of bacteria at birth. This comes from the maternity hospital itself, notably from nursing staff and equipment and includes Clostridium and Streptococcus.

Following birth, the acquisition of digestive flora continues until your baby is around two to three months of age with most of this beneficial bacteria coming from the mother via touch, suckling and kissing1.

The way in which you feed your baby also has a strong influence on his or her digestive flora.

A breastfed baby tends to have greater numbers and types of beneficial bacteria than a formula fed infant, notably Bifidobacteria, Lactobacillus and Enterococcus.

These bacteria, specifically those belonging to the Bifidobacteria clan (genera) (e.g. Bifidobacteria infantis, Bifidobacteria bifidum, Bifidobacteria longum and Bifidobacteria breve) thrive in the presence of breast milk proteins and constitute up to 90% of a breastfed infant’s micro flora. They help prevent harmful bacteria colonizing the infant’s intestine.

Why Would I Need to Give My Baby Probiotics?

By this stage, you may be wondering, why anyone might want to give a baby probiotics when the child already has its own probiotic flora.

Well just as adults and older children can have an unbalanced digestive flora, so too can an infant. There are several reasons why your infant’s digestive flora may need a helping hand from probiotics including:

  • Your baby is currently receiving or has recently undertaken a course of antibiotics.
  • The mother’s digestive flora is unbalanced or was so at birth. Common signs of an out-of-sync digestive flora may include Candida albicans infection (intestinal and/or vaginal thrush), food intolerance symptoms, gut dysbiosis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) symptoms.
  • Your baby was born by caesarian section. Research indicates that the digestive flora in infants born by caesarian section may be disturbed for up to six months after birth3.
  • You baby was born prematurely. Research has shown that premature birth can result in a delayed and abnormal pattern of gut colonization with beneficial Bifidobacteria4.

Probiotic Supplements or Probiotic Foods?

Which is best? Giving your baby probiotics in the form of supplements or feeding probiotic foods? Well the answer is depends your baby’s age as well as the reason for giving your baby probiotics in the first place.

If your baby has been weaned onto solid foods and is healthy and you simply want your child to stay this way, then it makes sense to include probiotic foods in your child’s diet. Start these as early as possible so your infant get used to the sour taste of probiotic foods. Suitable early foods include probiotic yogurt and fermented dairy drinks such as milk kefir. You can also liquidize cultured vegetables such as

fermented cabbage sauerkraut) in a blender and you can rub some of the fermented vegetable juice into your baby’s gums.Baby Probiotics: A Child Acquires Most of its Natural Probiotic Bacteria from its Mother

If however your child has a specific health problem for which you have sought professional advice and for which you wish to try probiotic supplements, then giving your child baby probiotics is a good idea. Baby probiotics contain an adequate dose of probiotics for therapeutic use. They are also the best method of giving probiotics to tiny babies, who have not yet been weaned.

Don’t forget too, that your baby will acquire most of its beneficial flora from its mother. To ensure your baby gets a good maternal dose of healthy intestinal bacteria, make sure that mum too includes probiotics in her diet as well as plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit, which feed the all-important beneficial bacteria.

Scientific Evidence Supporting the Use of Probiotics in Infants

Indeed a significant amount of scientific evidence also exists to suggest that giving a baby probiotics may provide health benefits. Probiotics have been shown to help a wide range of infant conditions including:

  • Atopic disease including eczema, allergic rhinitis and asthma: Probiotics were shown both to help prevent and reduce these conditions. The studies used Lactobacillus GG, which is marketed as Culturelle Probiotic for Kids and Lactobacillus reuteri which is available in Biogaia Infant Drops)5,6.
  • Colic: Probiotics were proven to improve symptoms. Lactobacillus reuteri which is available in Biogaia Infant Drops, was used in this study7.
  • Diarrhea and Gastroenteritis: This study concluded that probiotics, specifically Bifidobacteria, reduced the incidence of these conditions8.
  • Functional chronic baby constipation9. Lactobacillus reuteri, which is available in Biogaia Infant Drops, was shown to increase the number of bowel movements.
  • Necrotizing enterocolitis in premature babies: Probiotics were proven to help prevention and reduce the severity of this condition. The studies used three different probiotic combinations: Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium infantis10, a mixture of Bifidobacterium Bifidum and Lactobacillus acidophilus11, and a combination of Bifidobacteria infantis, Streptococcus thermophilus, and Bifidobacteria bifidus12(latter marketed as Solgar ABC Dophilus)

Additionally probiotics for children have also been shown to have health benefits, which may be applicable to babies.

Where Can I buy Baby Probiotics

We have teamed up woth to provide you with a fantastic range of baby probiotics. Click here to visit our store.

Probiotic Yogurt

Probiotic Yogurt

Probiotic yogurt or live yogurt as it is also known, has been consumed in many different cuisines around the world since ancient times. Nomadic herdsmen are believed to be the first consumers of probiotic yogurt, begining the tradition approximately 9,000 years ago when man first began keeping animals. Originally, the fermentation of milk to produce yogurt is thought to have occurred naturally by wild bacteria and quite by accident. However, the herdsmen soon learned to culture the milk themselves, making their own probiotic yogurt.The milk is most commonly from cows though probiotic yogurts made from goat, sheep or even water buffalo milk are also available. Likewise probiotic yogurts made using soy milk are becoming increasingly popular.Go try some – see what it could do for you!There are some wonderful and simple recipes for making cold yogurt sauces, as well as other probiotic foods in Sally Fallon’s excellent book, Nourishing Traditions and also Wild Fermentation by Sandor Elliz Katz.You can also use a commercial yogurt starter instead of commerical plain yogurt.

Today probiotic yogurt is still consumed by many different cultures worldwide. In the United States, live yogurt is the most popular probiotic food. Over recent years, as Americans have begun to recognise the benefits of probiotic foods, US consumption of probiotic yogurt has increased. Although on the rise however, US consumption of live yogurt is considerably lower than that in either Europe or the Middle East.Live yogurts are usually made from animal milks to which the following probiotic bacteria are added:

  • Streptococcus thermophilus

    and either

    Lactobacillus acidophilus or Lactobacillus bulgaricus
  • Health Benefits of Probiotic YogurtAs well as being very nutritious – yogurt contains calcium, vitamin B2, vitamin B12, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and protein – various research studies have concluded that yogurt is beneficial to health. While more research is needed, eating probiotic yogurt on a regular basis is thought to provide the following health benefits:
  • Improved immune ability to resist and recover from infection1.Prevention of vaginal yeast and bacterial infections2.Lowering of LDL “bad” cholesterol whilst raisng HDL “good” cholesterol levels3.Reduction of blood pressure4.Improvement in gastrointestinal conditions such as antibiotic-induced diarrhea5, constipation6,lactose intolerance, inflammatory bowel disease, and helicobacter pylori infection and treatment efficacy7,8.
  • Uses of Probiotic YogurtIf you’re like most people, you probably eat your yogurt as a dessert. However there are numerous other ways to enjoy yogurt. One super easy way of including probiotic yogurt in your daily diet is simply by replacing your usual yogurt with a probiotic one. Other easy ways to include probiotic yogurt in your diet include:
  • On your morning breakfast cereal as a replacement for milk.As a snack with fresh fruit.Use it in place of milk in your smoothies.Mixed with cucumber, garlic and/or lemon and eaten as a cold savory sauce or dip.
  • Buying Probiotic YogurtProbiotic yogurt can be purchased in most grocery stores. It is available in many different forms including regular, low fat to fat-free, chilled or frozen, flavored and unflavored. Additionally and increasingly you can also buy probiotic yogurt in tubes, which can be squeezed into your mouth. Be wary though, not all of these products as as wholesome and healthy as they appear!Sorting through all the probiotic yogurt options to find one that will deliver the health benefits of probiotics can seem a daunting task but, armed with a little information, you will be able to do this in minutes. Let us show you how to choose a quality probiotic yogurt.Check the Label for Probiotic or Live BacteriaAll probiotic yogurt, or live yogurt as it is also sold, contains live probiotic bacteria. To determine whether the probiotic yogurt you are looking at is live, look on the label for the words “contains live/active/probiotic” cultures. Only those with words to this effect on the label will contain live probiotics. Watch out for products stating “made with live/active/probiotic cultures”. Such products are likely to have undergone heat-treatment (pasteurization), which kills live bacteria.All probiotic yogurts are made using bacteria from the Lactobaccillus family along with Streptococcus thermophilus. Some probiotic yogurts also contain other strains of live bacteria. Ingesting a large variety of probiotic bacteria potentially increases the health benefits of the product, so the more probiotic species and strains your yogurt contains, the better!Look Out for Added SugarIf you’re like most people you probably prefer your yogurt sweet. Indeed in the United States, most of the yogurt purchased is sweetened with refined or processed sugar. Probiotic yogurt is available though without sugar – look for the “natural”, “plain” and “unsweetened” options. Without the processed and refined sugar, which raises insulin levels, supresses immunity and encourages unhelpful digestive flora, these natural probiotic yogurts are healthier than their sweetened counterparts. Be kind to yourself and try an unsweetened probiotic yogurt.A natural probiotic yogurt will of course taste sour in comparison to a sweetened. To make your transition to plain yogurt easier why not try initially:
  • Mixing half your usual sweetened yogurt with half a natural probiotic yogurt.Eating your natural probiotic yogurt as a savory dip.Adding honey or a fresh fruit to your natural yogurt.
  • Choose a Chilled YogurtAlways choose a chilled yogurt as opposed to a frozen one. Beneficial bacteria can survive freezing but frozen yogurt contains far fewer probiotic bacteria than a chilled yogurt. Frozen yogurts also often contain a great deal of sugar. Choose chilled probiotic yogurt over frozen probiotic yogurt every time!Making Probiotic YogurtOf course you can also make your own probiotic yogurt really easily. This way you can ensure your home-made yogurt is completely natural and contains no unneccessary additives. You can also ferment your yogurt for longer periods to ensure that your end product is almost lactose free. Such long fermenting periods produce home-made yogurts especially suitable for people with lactose intolerance, producing a product that much is lower in lactose and thus easier on digestion than commerical yogurts.To make your own yogurt you typically need:
  • Shallow oven-proof container with lid.Thermometer1 US quart or 1 liter milk. Use either whole milk (3.5% fat), reduced-fat milk(2%) or semi-skimmed milk (1.8% fat).Yogurt starter
  • Yogurt RecipeTo make your own delicious yogurt:
  • Heat your milk to approximately 180ºF (82ºC) for fifteen seconds and then cool to 110ºF (43ºC).Mix in half a cup (4 fluid ounces or 8 tablespoons) of commercial plain probiotic yogurt.Stir thoroughly and place in your shallow covered container.Place in an oven heated to 150ºF (66ºC) or in gas oven with pilot light on for twelve hours/overnight. For low-lactose yogurt leave in the oven for twenty-four hours.
  • Finally you can make your life even simpler by using a yogurt maker. We find this the best way to make home-made yogurt. This no-fuss approach ensures your probiotic yogurt is kept at the right temperature as it ferments. Choose a maker with either individual cups or one large tub. The Yogourmet Electric Yogurt Maker is a bulk yogurt machine suitable for making one or two quarts of yogurt and is also good for those who don’t like too much washing up! If you prefer to make your yogurt in individual jars, then try either the Eurocuisine YM80 Automatic Yogurt Maker or the Cuisipro Donvier Electronic Yogurt Maker.

    Dr Ohhira's Probiotics

    Dr Ohhira’s Probiotics

    Dr Ohhiras Probiotics (also known as OMX probiotics) are a type of probiotic supplement manufactured by Essential Formulas.

    There are currently two products in the Dr Ohhira range: Dr Ohhira’s Probiotics 12 Plus (Original Formula) and Dr Ohhira’s 12 Plus Professional Formula.

    Both products contain identical ingredients. The difference between them lies in their fermentation times. Dr Ohhira’s Probiotics 12 Plus are fermented for three years, whilst the Professional Formula receives an additional two years, making a total fermentation period of five years.

    This longer fermentation period is said to increase the potency of the organic acids and probiotic bacteria contained in the product. Thus, whilst there are fewer bacteria in the Professional Formula (600 million CFUs1) compared to the Original Formula (900 million CFUs), the bacteria are said to be more powerful. As far as we understand, however, no independent evidence exists to confirm this increased potency.

    Both products are available in packs of sixty capsules, which are blister packed to protect the products’ potency. The capsules are suitable for adults, children and infants alike and can be stored at room temperature without the need for refrigeration.

    Product Ingredients

    Dr Ohhira’s probiotics differ from many of the probiotic supplements on the market. Rather than being chemically synthesized in a laboratory as is the case with many probiotic supplements today, the probiotics in the Dr Ohhira range are made from natural ingredients using only a modern-day version of ancient Japanese fermentation techniques.

    Dr Ohhira’s products contain over 92 different plant species including wild fruits, seaweeds, herbs, vegetables and mushrooms as well as spring water. This crop mixture forms the basis of the products’ prebiotics, fructooligosaccharides (also known as FOS), which are naturally developed during the fermentation process.

    Additionally, the products contain a probiotic blend totaling 900 million CFUs (Original) and 600 million CFUs (Professional) respectively and both comprising 4 bacterial species and 12 bacterial strains:

    • Bifidobacterium breve subspecies (ss) breve
    • Bifidobacterium infantis ss. infantis
    • Bifidobacterium longum
    • Enterococcus faecalis TH10
    • Lactobacillus brevis
    • Lactobacillus acidophilus
    • Lactobacillus bulgaricus
    • Lactobacillus casei ss. casei
    • Lactobacillus fermentum
    • Lactobacillus helveticus ss. jagurti
    • Lactobacillus plantarum
    • Streptcoccus thermophilus

    Neither of the Dr Ohhira probiotics contain artificial additives, preservatives, colors, flavors, soil-based organisms (SBOs) or animal by-products. The product ingredients are also free from exposure to chemical fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides. Additionally, they are non-GMO2, dairy, soy and gluten free. Thus Dr Ohhiras probiotics are suitable for those who follow a dairy soy and/or gluten-free diet as well as for vegetarians.

    Evidence for the Health Benefits of Dr Ohhira Probiotics

    Whilst there is no specific scientific evidence relating specifically to Dr Ohhira’s probiotic supplements, research studies have proven that the specific probiotic strains included in these products are indeed beneficial to health. Lactobacillus acidophilus for example has been scientifically shown to help constipation 3, abdominal pain4 and rhinitis5, whilst Lactobacillus plantarum has been proven to help symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)6.

    Additionally, the mixture of beneficial bacteria contains the patented Th10 strain of Enterococcus faecilis, which was developed from the fermented food tempeh by Dr Lichiroh Ohhira himself. Dr Ohhira's Professional Formula ProbioticsDr Ohhira has shown that this strain of bacteria inhibits the MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) superbug, Escherichia coli 0157 (E. Coli 0157) as well as Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), which causes peptic ulcers. He has also demonstrated that Enterococcus faecalis TH10 is 6.25 times stronger than other naturally occurring lactic acid bacteria.

    Whilst Dr Ohhira has won numerous awards for his work and for his probiotics, we cannot find evidence that any independent research has been conducted to verify these results.

    However, user reviews (see and anecdotal evidence demonstrate that this probiotic is highly regarded by many patients and physicians alike. Indeed there are vast numbers of user reviews, which rate these products very positively. Many people report that Dr Ohhira probiotics are effective for many conditions including Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Candida albicans, urinary tract infections, ulcerative colitis, Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), allergies and vaginal yeast infections.


    We think there are a number of advantages to Dr Ohhira’s probiotics. These are:

    • These products do not require refrigeration and so are ideal to take with you on trips away.
    • The probiotics contain a good blend of probiotic strains and species. Taking a probiotic with a wide-range of strains and species is thought to be more beneficial than taking a single-strain product, as taking multiple strains increases the chance of at least one being effective.
    • The products contain only natural ingredients.
    • The products are free from fillers and binders, which can be an irritant to people with digestive problems.
    • Both products have an extremely long shelf life of three years, this is much longer than most other probiotic supplements on the market.
    • Adults, children and even infants can take the products, making them suitable for the entire family!
    • The products are encapsulated in an enteric coating, which is designed to withstand the stomach acid, delivering the probiotic bacteria intact to the colon.


    In terms of their disadvantages, Dr Ohhira probiotics have the following drawbacks:

    • They are available only in a sealed capsule form. This is likely to be problematic for those with severe dysbiosis problems, who may wish to start small and increase the dosage slowly. The sealed capsules are very difficult to split. Those with severe digestive issues may find that taking an entire capsule of these probiotics initially causes a healing crisis, which results in a flare of their symptoms.If this is you and you want to try these products, then one way to lessen this exacerbation of symptoms is to take one capsule, wait for a few days until your symptoms have subsided (either totally or to their usual level) and then to take another. As your gut flora re-balances over time, these initial flare-ups on taking the probiotic should subside.
    • They contain a mixture of many different herbs, vegetables, wild fruits, seaweeds and mushrooms, which may make them difficult to tolerate for people with allergies and food intolerance symptoms.
    • They contain fructooligosaccharides (also known as FOS), which may make them unsuitable for people with dysbiosis.
    • The bacterial count per capsule (CFUs) is much lower many other probiotic supplements.
    • The cost is very high when compared to other probiotic supplements. See our cost comparison guide for advice on how to compare fairly the cost of different probotics.

    Our Evaluation

    We have given these products a three-star rating on the basis that they have some excellent qualities but also some limiting ones. These products are suitable for the whole family: for adults, children and infants alike. They also contain an excellent mix of bacterial strains and species, though in much smaller quantities (Colony Forming Units or CFUs) than most other probiotic supplements. Additionally, the wide range of ingredients and capsule form mean that they are probably not suitable for those with allergy and intolerances. Also the cost is high per 10 billion CFUs of bacteria when compared to other supplements.

    The reviews (see though are excellent – the choice is yours!!!

    Where Can I Buy Dr Ohhira’s Probiotics?

    You can buy Dr Ohhira’s probiotics from our on-line store, provided in partnership with

    Dr Ohhira’s probiotics are also available from many natural health food stores (both actual and on-line) as well as from some pharmacies.

    Align Probiotic: What Is it?

    Align Probiotic: What Is it?

    Align Ingredients

    The ingredients in Align Probiotic capsules are as follows:

    • B. infantis 36524
    • Microcrystalline cellulose
    • Hypromellose (vegetarian capsule shell)
    • Sugar
    • Magnesium stearate
    • Milk protein
    • Titanium dioxide
    • Sodium citrate dihydrate
    • Propyl gallate
    • FD&C; blue #1 (colorant)
    • Riboflavin (colorant)


    In terms of advantages, Align probiotic capsules can be stored at room temperature unlike many probiotic supplements, which require refrigeration. This makes them ideal for “on the go” use and thus ideal for taking on vacation. Align probiotics also have a longer shelf-life (24 months) than many other probiotic supplements.Align Probiotic Contains Bifidobacteria Infantis 35624

    The product is also free from lactose, soy and gluten and so is suitable for those allergic or sensitive to these products. Its vegetable-based capsules also makes it appropriate for vegetarians.

    Children can also take Align probiotic supplements. If however you are unsure as to whether or not this product is suitable for your child, be sure to consult your child’s physician for advice.

    According to its website, Align Probiotic also comes recommended by gastroenterologists (also known as gastrointestinal or GI doctors). Among those gastroenterologists who recommend probiotics, Align purports to be the favored brand. Visit to read about Common CPAP masks you can find in Australia.

    This product also receives very positive customer reviews on Click here to read these reviews.

    Many report that it has helped with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and associated symptoms including chronic diarrhea, constipation, gas (flatulence) and bloating.

    Furthermore, the specific strain of Bifidobacteria infantis used in the product (strain 35624) has been scientifically proven to help the symptoms of IBS2,3,4 specifically incomplete evacuation, abdominal pain, bowel dysfunction and gas.

    Finally, the manufacturers of this product offer a money back guarantee should you not be satisfied with your purchase. See the Align website for further details.


    As far as the disadvantages of this product are concerned, this product contains a significant number of additional synthetic ingredients including lubricants, (magnesium stearate) stabilizers, (sodium citrate dihydrate, propyl gallate) binders and fillers (microcrystalline cellulose). Additionally, it contains the whitener titanium dixoide as well as colorants (FD&C; blue #1 and riboflavin).

    This product is therefore not likely to be suitable for more sensitive people. If you have problems with food additives or colorants or are suffering from food intolerance symptoms, then you would be wise to select a purer product, such as one from the Custom Probiotics range. These are free from fillers or binders, colors, flavors and artificial additives.

    This product also contains sugar so also is not appropriate for those following a strict sugar-free diet.

    With only one billion colony-forming units (CFUs) of probiotic bacteria per serving, Align probiotic capsules provide a significantly lower bacterial count than many of the probiotic supplements currently on the US market.

    Most of the lower strength adult probiotic supplements contain at least ten billion CFUs of viable probiotic bacteria per serving, whilst a high potency probiotic such as VSL3 (also written VSL 3 and VSL#3) can contain up to 450 billion CFUs of probiotic bacteria.

    This low bacterial count per serving makes Align probiotic supplements expensive compared to other probiotic supplements. If you compare the cost of ten billion CFUs of this probiotic to other products on the market, you will find that comparatively Align Probiotic supplements are more expensive than many other products. Have a look at our cost comparison guide for more specific guidelines as to how to accurately compare the cost of different probiotic supplements.

    Finally, Align probiotic supplements contain one strain of probiotic bacteria only. Many experts recommend taking a mixture of probiotic bacteria to increase the chances of at least one being effective for you.

    Our Evaluation

    Align probiotic supplement contains Bifidobacteria infantis 36524

    This probiotic contains Bifidobacteria infantis (B.infantis) 35624, which has been shown both clinically and anecdotally to be of benefit for IBS. We feel however that the low bacterial count (CFUs) contained in this product, its high cost compared to other probiotic supplements, the significant number of additional ingredients contained in this product together with the fact that the product only contains one strain of probiotic bacteria, all limit the product. Thus we have given the product a rating of three stars.

    Where Can I Buy Align Probiotics

    You can buy Align probiotics from