The 6 probiotic drinks according to one dietitian will have a very real (and very positive) impact on your digestive system

jIs it just us, or does it seem like the days of local markets stocked solely with traditional drink options, soda, chocolate milk, some shade of Gatorade, are forever gone? These days, we can find a huge range of brightly colored bottles and cans from small and large businesses. Some even offer health benefits beyond hydration and electrolytes.

Case in point? The following gut-friendly beverages, all rich in probiotics or live, active cultures, diversify and balance the good bacteria in your gut.

It makes perfect sense: Gut health has become the top priority for many, and probiotic drinks are an easy and convenient way to support a happy, healthy microbiome. To that end, we caught up with Lauren Manaker, MS, RDN, LD, CLEC, CPT, a Charleston-based registered dietitian, who shared some of the best types of drinks for your gut (from kombucha and kefir to, yes, soda ). Ahead, the best probiotic drinks on the market according to an RDplus what you need to know before you buy in terms of flavor, ingredients, price, health benefits and more.

The 6 Best Probiotic Drinks, at a Glance:

Which drinks are rich in probiotics?

According to Manaker, there are four main types of probiotic drinks: kefir, kombucha, probiotic shots, and some sodas. That said, one in particular is a favorite of registered dietitians when it comes to maximum microbiome-boosting benefits.

When I think of a drink that’s a potent source of probiotics, the first thing that comes to mind is kefir, which is a fermented milk drink, says Manaker. There is data to suggest that regular consumption of kefir may support gut health. Also, opting for a choice, like kefir, that generally doesn’t contain added sugar will be your best bet, he says. Of course, if you’re dairy-free or just don’t like the taste of kefir, you can definitely reach for one of the other three drinks.

Are probiotic drinks good for you?

Of course, probiotic drinks are far from the ultimate solution to finally find intestinal harmony. (Those don’t exist, and that’s fine.) While probiotics help feed the healthy bacteria in your microbiome, Manaker notes that relying solely on probiotic drinks alone won’t get you very far if, for example, you avoid eating veggies or ne. you consistently consume a few too many glasses of Pinot. Rather, they should be consumed as part of a well balanced diet to reap the positive effects they may have to offer. To that end, in addition to consuming probiotics via drinks like kefir, Manaker suggests consuming three other foods that are also naturally rich in probiotics: sauerkraut, kimchi, and some yogurts.

When choosing the probiotic drink route, Manaker says you’ll get the greatest gut health benefits by keeping these guidelines in mind: Some options may contain large amounts of added sugar, which, in large amounts, can be linked to bad outcomes. for health, she says. In fact, scientific studies have shown that added sugar can lead to chronic inflammation that can affect heart, brain, and gut health. When it comes to added sugars and gut health, there’s still a lot we don’t know. But scientific studies suggest it promotes an inflammatory profile in the gut and damages the microbiome, Will Bulsiewicz, MD, gastroenterologist and New York Times bestselling author of The fiber recipe bookpreviously shared with Well+Good.

When should I drink probiotics?

According to Manager, When take probiotics is not as important as As you do it. While the best time to take probiotics varies from person to person, the Registered Dietitian points out that it’s best consumed with a source of prebiotic fiber, which is something most people forget to do. In general, any time of day where you can sneak in a serving of probiotic food is a good idea. However, it’s recommended to pair probiotics with prebiotic fiber, as prebiotic fiber serves as fuel for the probiotics, says Manaker. Any options to avoid this common mistake? Jerusalem artichokes, a slightly unripe banana, and onions are good sources of prebiotics, she says.

It is recommended to pair probiotics with prebiotic fiber, as prebiotic fiber serves as fuel for the probiotics. Jerusalem artichoke, a slightly unripe banana, and onions are good sources of prebiotics, says Manaker

6 Best Probiotic Drinks for Gut Health

kefir


Photo: Lifeway

Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Kefir Smoothie $4.00

Lifeway Organic Plain Milk Kefir is high in protein, calcium and 12 live, active probiotic cultures. It has a succulent, creamy texture with a tangy aftertaste, making it perfect for smoothies, topping with granola, or eating on its own. Plus, it’s up to 99% lactose-free, gluten-free, and made with all organic ingredients. To sweeten the deal even more, it comes in a variety of flavors, such as Organic Strawberry Banana Whole Milk Kefir and Organic Black Cherry Whole Milk Kefir.

Second Caroline MargoliRD a Food for life, Kefir is a probiotic powerhouse filled with essential nutrients important to daily health. An eight-ounce serving of Lifeway kefir contains a diverse set of 12 live, active cultures with 25 to 30 billion beneficial colony forming units, or CFUs, which is double the amount of yogurt, kombucha and some other probiotic drinks on the market. says Margolis. He adds that kefir is a good source of other essential nutrients, including protein, vitamins B12 and D, and calcium.

What’s more, Lifeway Kefir has a long fermentation process that produces bioactive peptides, which offer probiotics and potential anti-inflammatory, antihypertensive and antioxidant properties, making kefir a great food for supporting our immune, digestive and cardiovascular health, says Margolis.

  • An eight-ounce serving of Lifeway kefir contains a diverse set of 12 live, active cultures
  • Organic ingredients
  • Kefir is a good source of essential nutrients, including protein, vitamins B12 and D, and calcium
  • Tons of delicious flavors, like Strawberry Banana Organic Whole Milk Kefir and Black Cherry Organic Whole Milk Kefir
  • The tangy aftertaste may be new to those new to kefir
  • Not suitable for vegans

Kombucha


Photo: Salute-Ade

Salute-Ade Kombucha, 12-pack $50.00

Sweet, tangy, and full of gut-friendly probiotics, Health-Ade Kombucha deserves every bit of hype. The best part? It’s vegan, gluten-free, organic and magically delicious. Not convincing enough, maybe the billion CFU it contains can sweeten the deal. Plus, you’ll likely find the best assortment of flavors in this line of drinks, like their newly launched Guava Dragon Fruit kombucha.

  • Top notch assortment of delicious flavours
  • Packaging = nice glass bottle
  • Organic ingredients
  • One billion credits

Probiotic drinks


Photo: Cultura Pop Soda

Culture Pop Sparkling Probiotic Soda, 10-Pack $33.00

Culture Pop Soda offers a great alternative (rich in probiotics) to traditional sodas made with artificial ingredients. Available in flavors like watermelon, rosemary lime, and lemon ginger turmeric, this line of drinks is formulated with organic fruit juice, herbs, spices, and live probiotics. Plus, each can is vegan-friendly and (importantly) shelf-stable. Unlike other probiotic-rich drinks on the market, this one doesn’t require refrigeration before opening.

  • Suitable for vegans
  • shelf life
  • Five delicious flavours
  • No added sugar or artificial sweeteners


Photo: De La Calle

De La Calle Tepache, 12-pack $47.00

Tepache is a classic Mexican-style drink naturally rich in probiotics thanks to fermented pineapple. De La Calles’ formulation is based on the co-founders family recipe and is available in a variety of flavors such as Watermelon Jalapeo, Grapefruit Lime, Ginger Manzana, Picante Mango Chili and Tradicional Pineapple Spice.

  • Delightfully vibrant variety of flavours
  • Made from fermented pineapple, great for your gut
  • Low in sugar
  • Not for anyone allergic to pineapple

Probiotic yogurt drinks


Photo: Chobani

Chobani Greek Yogurt Drink $3.00

This protein-packed drinkable Greek yogurt product is made with locally sourced milk, which is fermented to form a happy environment for live, active gut-friendly cultures. For delicious flavor, Chobani infuses their yogurt drinks with fresh fruits like strawberries and raspberries. Also, unlike other Greek-style yogurt products that may rely on milk protein isolates or whey protein, Chobani uses an authentic strainer process that requires three cups of milk to produce just one cup of fresh Greek yogurt. Translation? It is rich in protein.

  • Rich in protein
  • Rich in live and active gut-friendly cultures (probiotics)
  • Infused with fresh fruit flavor


Photo: Lifeway

Lifeway Organic Oat Milk $5.00

Lifeway Oat is made with organic oats and contains 10 live and active vegan-derived probiotic cultures per serving to help promote a balanced and diverse microbiome. This product is dairy-free and comes in a variety of welcoming flavors, including plain, strawberry, peach, berry, and blueberry.

  • Plant based, suitable for vegans
  • Certified gluten free
  • Variety of fruity flavours
  • Contains 2 grams of fiber per serving
  • The tangy aftertaste may be new to those new to kefir

A registered dietitian shares the benefits of drinking kombucha:

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