Do Probiotics Restore Digestive Balance?

Live a Life of Digestive Comfort.” ”Restore your natural digestive balance.”

Many probiotics—so-called “good bacteria”—promise to improve your gut bacteria by repopulating your intestines, by crowding out “bad bacteria,” or by restoring some kind of “digestive balance” to your intestinal flora. That may be an oversimplification.

“We’re looking at trillions of microbial cells already in your intestinal tract,” says Lita Proctor. “If you take a probiotic, whether it’s a pill or a food product, the amount of microbes that you ingest and that survive and end up in your gut is so infinitesimal that you can’t say that they overgrow the system or outrun the other microbes.”