Best Probiotic for Women
We spent 3 months taking different brands of probiotics and recording the results to come up with this top 5 list. We did deep research (including clinical studies and speaking to doctors and other experts) to narrow down the options to the 5 we thought we could try out ourselves. The criteria we used to rank the products include quality of ingredients, potential health benefits, number of strains in the product and number of cultures. We do really like the Alivebynature Lactobacillus Gasseri for weight loss, but for overall health the outright winner was the NatureWise Women’s Probiotics W/ Cranberry & D-Mannose because it has just the right balance of all these factors. The probiotic helps with a range of issues including vaginal dryness, constipation, UTI and digestion. It contains 6 million cultures and 8 strains in total. This is a vegan probiotic so it scored high points for quality of ingredients.
It’s hard to recommend Probiotics for women simply because each individual has unique needs or requirements. The different probiotics also address different issues further compounding the problem of writing a useful review. We did our best to consider the most common women’s needs for probiotics and worked from there.
Our most important criteria are looked at in depth further down this review in the Buyer’s Guide. We should mention that we did not experience any side effects or complications related to taking the probiotics. Our tester who was taking other medication first consulted with her doctor to make sure that it was safe to use the products. We recommend you do the same just as a precautionary measure.
Top 5 Picks
1st Place: NatureWise Women’s Probiotics W/ Cranberry & D-Mannose
This NatureWise is the best probiotic if you have ‘lady issues’. We liked the details right off the bat which is why we picked it for actual testing. To begin with, the product contains 8 very different strains with each strain further containing 6 billion cultures. We recommended this one to our team member with recurrent yeast infections and the report was excellent by all accounts. The problem never surfaced again after her last treatment and since she started taking these probiotics.
We also like that this probiotic prevents a spectrum of sensitive women’s issues including vaginosis, UTI’s and vaginal dryness. As a bonus, the NatureWise also solves constipation and other digestive issues.
We are very particular about what we put in our bodies so this product scored high points because it is a vegetarian product. Finally, you only need to take one tablet a day so it fits nicely into your lifestyle. The bottle contains 40 capsules.
2nd Place: BioTecture Probiotic
We assigned the BioTecture Probiotic to our team member with digestive issues and it worked as expected just from the details we had amassed before trying. She reported no more heartburn and her issues with constipation ended just a few days into taking the supplement.
The BioTecture contains acidophilus lactobacillus which are good bacteria found in your digestive system. The bottle comes with 30 capsules and taken once a day so you don’t have to worry if you tend to forget to take your medication. This product also contains 10 billion good bacteria and is made in the United States this fact matters to you (as it should because of FDA approval).
Ingredients that we pleased to see include Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus Plantarum. Finally, this is a vegan product so no GMOs and other toxins you don’t want to ingest.
3rd Place: Nutrition Essentials Probiotic
The Nutrition Essential Probiotic is perfect for the quintessential health freak and we gave it to the fitness fanatic in our team. She reported feeling more energetic overall so it’s highly recommended for an active lifestyle.
This product helps with cardiovascular health and boosts the body’s ability to absorb minerals and vitamins. It’s also great for your auto immune system. One more thing that our human guinea pig reported is she peed much better whatever that means. It makes sense though because the probiotic is also designed to help with urinary function.
We love that this product is all natural without the GMOs that we see in many supplements. There is also no need to refrigerate the bottle. The specifications were also quite impressive which would explain why our tester loved it. It’s marketed as having the highest CFU per serving compared to other similar products on the market. Each bottle comes with 60 capsules so it’s nice to have a two month supply before you have to restock. This one is also made in the USA.
Bonus benefits: the Nutrition Essentials Probiotic also aids with digestion and regulating appetite. Some people we interviewed during our research point to the product helping them a great deal in the weight loss journey.
4th Place: Renew Life Ultimate Flora Critical Extra Care
The responsibility for testing the Renew Life Probiotic fell on the author of this article who had issues with stomach gas. The most notable difference within a week of using the product is no more gas. It also helped a great deal with digestion and constipation which has been a bit of a recurring issue.
One of the reasons why we selected this product for testing is Renew Life (the company that makes it) has carved out a niche in digestive aids. This niche is actually all the company does so you can expect excellence here. On to the practical information, Ultimate Flora Extra Care contains 50 billion cultures and 10 different strains of probiotics which is exemplary by any standard. This product should actually have been at the top of the list just that others on the team had more acute issues so the improvement was more noticeable.
The capsules are easy on the stomach (enteric-coated) and highly recommended for recurring stomach upsets, IBS, gas, constipation, and other digestive issues.
5th Place: Hyperbiotics Pro-15
Hyperbiotics Pro-15 targets the large intestines so we recommend this to anyone who just wants to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We picked our all-natural living team member to test this one out and the results were as good as we expected. The first thing that strikes you is the size of the capsules. They look more like pearls and are actually very easy to swallow.
Our tester reported just feeling overall better, in a better mood and more energetic. This improvement makes sense since this product boosts vitamin intake in your body. The little issues that our member had with upset stomach soon disappeared after starting on a Hyperbiotics PRO-15 regiment.
The details are also quite impressive. Each capsule contains 75 billion CFU of probiotics. As usual, this is an all natural product made right here in the USA.
What Is Probiotics?
Most people forget or simply don’t know that there are ‘good’ bacteria in the body. That’s what probiotics are in a nutshell. These are bacteria that are already found in your body. So probiotics work very similar to supplements except the former introduces good bacteria into the body.
Probiotics help to prevent and improve a wide spectrum of conditions including digestive issues, irritable bowel syndrome, vaginal and urinary problems and even skin issues such as eczema.
What to Look For in Probiotics
The truth is there is more to probiotics than meets the eye. Remember that this is a hot market so there are plenty of sub-standard brands and company trying to cash in on the demand. There are a few guidelines that we recommend you use to choose your probiotics. We used these same criteria when compiling this list of top 5 probiotics for women.
Number of Cultures (CFU)
CFU or Colony Forming Units are the basic measure for probiotics. The number is typically displayed clearly on the label so you might want to think twice about any product that doesn’t make this information obvious.
You want to consider anywhere from 3 billion to 50 billion (or more) CFU. Note that 3 billion is on the lower side and only recommended for people taking probiotics for no other reason other than they want to maintain an already healthy body. If you have symptoms or want to prevent some, you might want to consider from 50 billion for the product to be effective.
Number of Strains
You want as many different strains in a bottle of probiotics as possible to gain any real benefit. The two most important ones are Bifidobacterium and Lactobacilli. These cater to both the large and small intestines and may be abbreviated on the bottle as B and L respectively.
Keep in mind that the more the strain doesn’t actually mean the better. There are only a limited number of strains that are useful either because they are good for you or will actually reach the gut. A number of about 20 strains make sense.
Quality of Ingredients
You need to be very careful about anything you put into your body including good bacteria. As you might have noted, we only opted for all natural products. Be mindful of GMOs, Gluten and dairies especially if you are committed to a healthy lifestyle. The options listed on this review are all safe in this regard.
The idea of shelf stable has a number of moving parts which you need to take into account. Firstly, some products lose their potency where CFU is concerned. For example, a probiotic bottle that boasts 50 billion CFU may have half that number a few months down the line. We took this factor into account when compiling our list so you should be ok in this regard.
Some probiotics also need to be refrigerated to remain effective over their life-span. Again, we chose products which don’t need refrigeration since it’s not always possible to keep them chilled. You still need to keep them away from direct sunlight and in a relatively cool, dry and dark place to maintain their potency.
Finally, pay close attention to the expiry date. Many probiotics have a relatively short shelf-life and you may find that yours expired by the time it was shipped to you. A guarantee certainly helps but all in all, cross check the expiry date before buying.
As you may have also noted, some probiotics have very specific issues that they address while others cover a broad spectrum. Which one to choose certainly depends on your preference although it does make sense to take probiotics that specifically address a condition you are dealing with. We limited this review to the best probiotics for women so you see a bias for women-related conditions such as UTI, vaginal dryness, constipation, mood swings and so on.
These products, however, cover a wide range of issues including inflammation, brain function, eczema and GI support. Probiotics are also available for all genders and ages.
This is a roundup of the 5 best probiotics for women based on very specific criteria. We must admit that you shouldn’t take this order from 1-5 at face value. Any of these products reviewed here could easily occupy the number one spot simply based on the fact that each has its own specific area it addresses. We must also take into account the personal differences. Probiotics do not work the same way for two individuals so this difference also likely played a role in the numbering.
As a word of caution, probiotics are not a replacement for your medication. If you are taking any medication for the aforementioned conditions, you need to consult with your doctor whether it is safe for you to take these products. Additionally, you should definitely check with your doctor should you choose to stop your medication.
Finally, we must mention that you need to manage your expectations. It is very unlikely that you will see any dramatic results within the first few days because it takes time for the gut to change its condition. You should be able to report these benefits in a few weeks of taking your probiotics as prescribed on the bottle.