Probiotics are, technically speaking, defined as live, beneficial microorganisms designed for our consumption so they can “confer a health benefit” to us, “the host.” They can help inoculate your gut’s microbiome with helpful microbes when those populations have become depleted.

Because every person’s microbiome is unique, there is no model for an ideal microbiome—but we do know that a healthy one is a balanced one, with the beneficial, symbiotic microbe populations outweighing the populations with the potential to cause harm and disease. We also know that these populations can fluctuate, influenced by our environment and environmental inputs, the foods we eat, the medications we take, and even our exercise (or lack of) habits.

Maintaining this balance is important, but so are the key functions our symbiotic microbes perform, which includes all the enzymes, organic acids, and other bioactive substances they produce. Within and on the surfaces of our bodies, these substances help maintain acidic environments that discourage harmful bacteria from growing, moderate nutrient absorption, and communicate through neurotransmitters to the brain, impacting functions like mood, behavior, and appetite.

Probiotic Species for Your Gut Microbiome

There are anywhere from 10-100 trillion microorganisms—from thousands of different species—that can live in our gut microbiome alone.

Each of these different species groups has different functions and substances they can create to help our bodies function. When you’re evaluating a probiotic supplement or seeking to understand how probiotic biochemicals work, it can be helpful to understand the different benefits provided.

Bifidobacterium line the walls of the large intestine, where they help protect against harmful bacteria, yeast, and other microorganisms. The human body is known to be naturally colonized by 14 different strains of Bifidobacteria, including B. infantis which is the main (sometimes only) microorganism in infants fed their mother’s milk, and a large part of the microorganisms found in the large intestine of elderly people. This species of bacteria produces lactic acid, which help keeps the large intestine acidic and discourages the growth of harmful bacteria. It also enhances the gut’s natural barrier and facilitates the body’s nutrient and mineral absorption. Bifidobacterium also produce B-complex vitamins and vitamin K. Bifidobacterium meet the requirements for GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) status.

Probiotics’ Ability to Survive Stomach Acid

Because you’re consuming probiotics, or probiotic food, the live microorganisms have to first survive your stomach’s acid before they can reach your intestinal system and start providing benefits.

SCD Probiotics’ line of liquid probiotics for gut health contain microorganisms that have been grown through our proprietary consortia process. As our different strains grow together, they interact together, forming a small ecosystem that resembles how microorganisms survive in the natural environment.

As a result, they become stronger, more resilient, and more effective at working together synergistically to keep their ecosystem going. And in a third-party study, SCD Probiotics’ products survived stomach acid 16x better than other leading brands.