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Probiotics vs. Prebiotics: What's the Difference?

Many people take probiotic supplements daily to help promote their gut health. They are becoming a popular way to make health a priority. But what about prebiotics? Learn what makes probiotics and prebiotics different, and how they may help promote a healthier you. Plus, find out how to choose the best prebiotic and probiotic for your lifestyle.

What are probiotics?

Modern probiotics were first described by Nobel Prize winner Elie Metchnikoff in 1907, who suggested that “The dependence of the intestinal microbes on the food makes it possible to adopt measures to modify the flora in our bodies and to replace the harmful microbes by useful microbes.” [Leahy, 2005]

Probiotics are live microorganisms like bacteria or yeasts that provide a health benefit. They can help promote a healthy gut and bodily function.

What are prebiotics?

Prebiotics are the food that the good bacteria in your gut eat. When they are present in your gut, they can help the good bacteria grow and thrive. Prebiotics can be attained through some foods we eat, like nuts and grains.

How are prebiotics and probiotics helpful? The good bacteria that make up your gut microbiota are beneficial in many ways. They help to:

  • provide a natural defense system
  • strengthen the immune system
  • maintain proper diet and nutrition

Most probiotics are bacteria that provide a health benefit. Introducing probiotics into your system boosts your body's good bacteria, while prebiotics give the good bacteria in your body the nutrients they need to thrive. It’s a beneficial relationship that may help you live a healthier life.

How do I choose the best probiotic and prebiotic for me?

You can easily introduce more prebiotics or probiotics into your system by incorporating supplements into your diet. Probiotic supplements are the same or similar to the good bacteria inside your gut. When choosing a supplement, it’s important to find the one that fits your life, is a reputable product, and contains a researched strain of probiotics. Align is the #1 doctor recommended probiotic brand‡, so you can trust it has been evaluated by professionals. Align Prebiotic + Probiotic Gummies contain the probiotic strain Bacillus coagulans LactoSpore® to help support your digestive health* – as well as the prebiotic inulin to nourish your good bacteria.*

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§Fortifies your digestive system 24/7 with continued daily use.*

Among Gastroenterologists who recommended a brand of probiotic in a ProVoice 2008-2018 survey.

Among Doctors who recommended a brand of probiotic in ProVoice 2013-2018 surveys.

*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.