Probiotic Myths, Benefits, and the Research Thus Far

We found this podcast to be incredibly informative and it’s well worth a listen.  The guest, Raja Dhir, works for a probiotic company, but warns the listener to watch for snake oil salesmen in the industry and shys away from making any bold claims.  As he says in the podcast, always ask to see the research, we’d recommend taking it a step further and scrutinizing it, before investing in a new health or wellness product.  If you have questions about a study, how strong the evidence is, and what you should reasonably extrapolate from it, e-mail us at

Some highlights of the podcast:

  • “Probiotic” is an unregulated term in the United States. The term should only be used on live microorganisms that have been shown to confer a benefit on the host.  Currently it’s used in marketing for any plausibly beneficial microorganism.  Many claims are unjustified.
  • The effect of a strain can vary greatly from other strains of the same species.
  • Probiotics are transient, and aren’t typically in the microbiome for more than ~8 weeks.
  • There is no consensus on what makes a microbiome a healthy one.
  • Raja urges caution when it comes to “Test & recommend” microbiome products.

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