‘I’m a Gastroenterologist, and These Are the 4 Things I Tell My Patients To Look for in a Probiotic To Help Relieve That Gassy, Bloated Feeling’

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You're walking into the drugstore and you make a beeline for the supplement section. When you stepped through the doors, you were feeling confident in your decision to support your gut health and tackle bothersome symptoms like occasional bloating and gas. Now staring down an entire aisle of options, your faith in your ability to choose the right solution is waning.

But don't get discouraged: On your next supplement shopping trip, you can come prepared knowing what to look for on the bottle—courtesy of board-certified gastroenterologist Kumkum Patel, MD, MPH—to ensure you're getting the most out of your supplements—starting with the right probiotic.

Off the bat, it's important to know what probiotics are and what exactly they do. Probiotics are live microorganisms (think: bacteria and yeast) that add good bacteria to the gut and provide health benefits to the body.

According to Dr. Patel, probiotics are important because they can influence your immune system, mood, and, most famously, your digestive system. Though no one probiotic does it all—in fact each bacteria is different—some probiotics help to alleviate occasional symptoms, like bloating and gas, as well, Dr. Patel says.

If dealing with occasional bloating and gas was one of your main reasons for seeking out a probiotic in the first place, Dr. Patel has four things to keep in mind when perusing your options. And spoiler: Align Bloating Relief + Food Digestion Probiotics Supplement Capsules check every box. Keep reading for intel from Dr. Patel on what exactly to look for in your probiotic.

1. Well-studied strains

There isn't just one type of effective probiotic—there are many different strains that can support your gut in different ways. When it comes to supplements, Dr. Patel recommends looking for one that contains a probiotic strain backed by research.

Align Bloating Relief + Food Digestion contains a unique probiotic strain, Bifidobacterium 35624, which was developed by gastroenterologists and is backed by over 20 years of research. This unique strain helps relieve occasional bloating, gas, and abdominal discomfort.* Plus, Align Bloating Relief + Food Digestion also contains vitamin B12 to help support the breakdown of food into cellular energy.*

2. Does not need to be refrigerated

Many probiotic supplements require refrigeration to keep the delicate bacteria alive, as they can be easily affected by temperature. However, Dr. Patel notes that probiotics are often effective when they reach the colon, so she recommends looking for ones that don't require refrigeration and are hardy enough to survive that journey. And—you guessed it—Align Probiotic Bloating Relief + Food Digestion is enclosed in advanced packaging to ensure potency and survivability at room temperature, so it does not need to be refrigerated. Consider that a win for your gut and your on-the-go lifestyle.

3. Doctor recommended

You might be tempted to grab the bottle that looks most aesthetically pleasing on the drugstore shelf, or the one that has those funny Instagram ads you see while scrolling, but when it comes to your health, you want to make sure you're taking effective probiotics—not just trendy ones that'll look cool on your counter. Before you purchase your probiotics, check with your doctor to ensure it's a trusted formula (spoiler alert: Align Probiotic has been the number one recommended probiotic brand by gastroenterologists for over 15 years in a row‡).

4. Works for you

After you've checked the label for the above, the last step in knowing you're using effective probiotics is to test them out for a few weeks and see how you feel. Don't expect changes right away, Dr. Patel says, since it could take a few weeks for your body and your microbiome to adjust to the new good bacteria—so give the probiotics time to work before assessing if they're right for you. For example, two out of three people felt less burdened by their digestive health after using Align Probiotic for three weeks<.

Now that we've broken down what to look for in probiotic supplements, you can strut back into the drugstore—with only confidence this time around.

Join the Healthy Gut Team Up by signing up at AlignProbiotics.com and receive a $5 coupon, valid on any one (1) Align Probiotic supplement product.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

‡Among gastroenterologists who recommended a brand of probiotic in ProVoice 2008-2023 surveys.

< In a survey of 104 adults who self-reported their occasional digestive issues were less bothersome during and after using Align Probiotic (for 3 weeks)

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