6 Best Probiotic Brands For Leaky Gut (2023) Tried & Tested
Disclaimer: This guide may contain affiliate links which means I may receive a commission if you make a purchase through any links you click.
6 years ago, before discovering the many benefits of probiotic bacteria I suffered from Intestinal Permeability.
There wasn't a lot of clinical research into the Leaky Gut back then and as such, it was difficult to find solutions for the conditions even from my own Doctor.
If I could travel back in time, the number one thing I would have told my younger self would be to start experimenting with probiotic strains.
In this guide, I will share what probiotics helped with healing my leaky gut syndrome.
This post was medically reviewed by Dr. Usman from the NHS Royal Derby Hospital in England.
Best Leaky Gut Probiotic Overall
Alicia's Naturals Flowflora,
Leaky Gut Studied Probiotic Strains,
Contains Prebiotic Fiber,
Coupon Code: LEAKY - 15%
From $1.13 Per Serving (FREE US Shipping)
Best Runner Up
Garden Of Life Colon Care
33 Probiotic Strains
From $1.20 Per Serving (Free Shipping Over $25)
Live Conscious 45
11 Probiotic Strains
From $1.16 Per Serving + ($5.95 shipping)
6 Best Probiotic Brands For Leaky Gut
ISS Bif Bifidobacterium Lactis (SD-5219), Lactobacillus Acidophilus (SD5221), Bifidobacterium (SD- 5674), Bifidobacterium Lactis, Bifidobacterium Longnum, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Lactobacillus Brevis, Lactobacillus Bulgaricus, Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Fermentum, Lactobacillus Helveticus, Lactobacillus Kefiranofaciens, Lactobacillus Kefirgranum, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, Lactococcus Lactis, Lactococcus Cremoris, Streptococcus Thermophilus, Lactobacilllus Kefir, Lactobacillus Parakefir, Lactobacillus Planatarum, Lactococcus Lactis Biovar Diacetylactis, Leuconostoc Lactis, Leuconostoc Mesenteroides, Leuconostoc cremoris, Leuconostoc Dextranicum Kluyveromyces Marxianus, Brettanomyces Anomalus, Deberyomyces Hansenii, Saccharomyces Cervevisiae, Saccharomyces Exiguus, Torulaspora Delbrueckii.
I like Garden Of Life because of the high 50-Billion CFU count but I do think that for some people it may be a bit too strong and cause initial side effects. In my experience, most people trying probiotics for the first time should pick something a little less strong.
Nevertheless, if you can get past any initial side effects, the high CFU count, prebiotics and 33 Lactobacillus & Bifidobacterium probiotic strains inside of each Garden Of Life Colon Care capsule may make a difference in your microbiome.
Colon Care ticks all of the boxes for not being a scam or unsafe. It's made in the USA, the factor is FDA-registered, it's dairy-free, gluten-free. I personally don't recommend taking probiotic supplements that don't have acid-resistant capsules but Garden Of life does have acid-resistant technology which is something I liked.
Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Bifdobacterium Lactis, Lactobacillus Plantarum and Lactobacillus Paracasei.
FlowFlora is a new Probiotic from my brand Alicia's Naturals priced at $39.95 before using a coupon. I was inspired to make this probiotic after testing 27+ different probiotic supplements for the PRG blog and figuring out what made a probiotic suck or be awesome.
I spent a lot of time choosing the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium probiotic strains for FlowFlora and made sure they were clinically studied. I also included a FOS prebiotic fiber so that probiotic bacteria has a source of fuel.
Each capsule has a coating derived from natural brown seaweed that allows it to survive harsh stomach acid conditions. It has a 40-Billion CFU count which is ideal for beginners but also potent enough for people with Leaky Gut looking for something strong enough to reduce inflammation in a leaky gut. You can read more about that here.
FlowFlora is NON-GMO, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Peanut-free, and 100% made in Utah, USA. The biggest pro's of FlowFlora is that I can offer a 365-day money-back guarantee, have free shipping for PRG readers, reply to your emails directly and offer a 15% discount with the coupon code "LEAKY". One negative about FlowFlora is that the warehouse is only able to ship on business days and the bottle doesn't come packed in a cute little box 🙁
Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bifidobacterium longum, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus casei, Lactobacillus gasseri, Lactobacillus salivarius, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Bacillus coagulans.
Livewell is an awesome company that has claimed to have sold millions of various supplements to many happy customers. Their probiotic has a 45-billion CFU count hence the name Pro-45. Each capsule contains prebiotic fiber & 11 Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium probiotic strains that may help with Leaky Gut symptoms.
I had good results with my digestive health when taking Pro-45 and the only complaint I had was that it was quite expensive for my budget. Like FlowFlora they also have a 365-day refund policy but the kicker is that you need to physically ship the bottle back. They also have bulk discount options if you are looking to stock up long-term.
Live Well is 100% vegan, Soy Free NON-GMO, and has a good delay-released stomach acid-resistant capsule. Livewell supplements are made in the USA with great care and high-quality ingredients. I think pro-45 is a good choice for the leaky gut but not the best.
Bacillus Coagulans, Bacillus Clausii, Bacillus Subtilis.
Dr. Amy Myers has some great supplements and a loyal fan base who trust her for their health. Her Primal Earth probiotic has 3 different Bacillus Coagulans probiotic strains, 3-billion CFU per serving, and no lactobacillus bacteria.
It may seem like the CFU count is super low and the probiotic strains suck but this is done on purpose. This supplement is designed for people with SIBO and the low CFU count is too potent. Also, the 3 bacillus probiotic strains are soil-based which is said to be better.
If you have both SIBO and Leaky Gut then this could be the best option for you. It is unfortunately quite expensive at $59.97 for one bottle and the return policy is strange in that you have to pay $7.99 for a return label. If you are a fan of Amy Myers though you probably won't care about that though.
Bifidobacterium longum, Bifidobacterium breve, Lactiplantibacillus plantarum. Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus, Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus, Bifidobacterium infantis, Bifidobacterium lactis, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus crispatus, Lacticaseibacillus casei.
Seed probiotics are the most creatively unique probiotic in this list with a special 26 broad-spectrum probiotic strains and AFU count. They use a ViaCap® technology to make sure the capsules survive stomach acid
Seed probiotics use some unique methods in their manufacturing process like optimizing the bio-fermentation process and taking PH levels and temperature into consideration for the good bacteria.
This probiotic should be one of the number 1 probiotics for leaky gut but it's super expensive and I have heard bad things about their customer support being super slow. Their refund policy is also only 30days. It is however vegan, gluten, soy-free and shipping is free if you are ordering inside the US.
How Probiotics Can Help With Leaky Gut
Unfortunately, human clinical studies that specifically test Probiotics and Leaky Gut together are non-existent. The good news however is that there are quite a few studies that were carried out on similar conditions related to intestinal permeability and gut barrier function which is essentially the same thing.
Here are some of the studies that show Probiotics may help to reduce Leaky Gut markers.
Probiotics May Help Support Intestinal Tight Junctions
This 2013 manuscript from Current Nutrition & Food Science was titled Protection and Restitution of Gut Barrier by Probiotics: Nutritional and Clinical Implications and set out to confirm if probiotics could have a role in protecting and even restoring the gut barrier from damage like in Leaky Gut for example.
The study stated that "studies on the gastrointestinal mucosal protective role of probiotics have been mostly successful" but also they stated that different Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium probiotic strains have different probiotic effects.
Tight Junctions play an important role in protecting the intestinal gut barrier function and one of the ways they do this is by creating a physical barrier to luminal inflammatory molecules.
They may also be important for allowing better nutrient absorption and can regulate water, iron, and macromolecules. It was suggested in this study that dietary changes may regulate the Tight Junctions and help with inflammation by reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines result in an anti-inflammatory effect in the intestinal lining.
Probiotics May Fight Off Bad Bacteria In Your Gut
Too much inflammation inside of the tight junction in the intestinal epithelium can lead to inflammatory bowel diseases that can then in turn lead to Dysbiosis, SIBO, and Leaky Gut. One big reason that inflammation can occur in the gut is from too many bad bacteria from diet, stress, or other factors like antibiotic usage.
Meta-analysis has shown that probiotics may help prevent SIBO which is an overgrowth of bacteria in the small colon. This is good because bad bacteria in the microbiome can contribute to inflammation which then can contribute to Leaky Gut syndrome.
If your Leaky Gut is a result of bad bacteria then by taking probiotic bacteria you may be able to fight off that bad bacteria by crowding them out and making it a hostile environment for them to thrive thus reducing inflammation and then leaky gut.
Probiotics Could Strengthen The Mucosal Barrier
This controlled clinical trial from 2013 aimed to test probiotics in 16 patients with severe pouchitis. The mucosal barrier function was examined before and after the use of probiotic supplementation and so was the microflora of the pouchitis.
While Pouchitis is fundamentally not the same condition, there are some cross-overs with how the mucosal barrier is damaged in both conditions.
The study concluded that probiotics restored the mucosal barrier which could help reduce Leaky Gut. The patients took probiotics for 8 weeks but the CFU count and probiotic strains were not shared.
Probiotics May Boost Butyrate Production
Studies like this one published in 2011 have studied the potential effects that Butyrate may have on conditions like Leaky Gut and other related intestinal diseases. The consensus is that while more studies are needed, it has been suggested that potential clinical application of Butyrate for the intestinal tract to peripheral tissue diseases like Leaky Gut.
Other studies like this 2018 one published in Nature.com have suggested that some probiotic bacteria can boost short-chain fatty acids like Butyrate and this may include Lactobacillus Paracasei, Streptococcus infantarius, L. rhamnosus, and more. The study stated that their work suggested that human-origin probiotics could be used as biotherapeutic regimens for human diseases associated with the gut microbiome.
The study also stated that in those with Leaky Gut there was a decreased abundance of short-chain fatty acids and because of that, there was a risk for increased leakiness of the gut that lead to inflammation. They claimed that the short-chain fatty acid could boost Butyrate and increase the expression of tight-junction proteins to reduce gut hyperpermeability.
What Is Leaky Gut?
In the past, a lot of the medical community shut down the idea that Leaky Gut was even a condition and some Doctors are still that way inclined. Fortunately, more research has been conducted and there are medical articles to show that the correct medical term for Leaky Gut Syndrome is intestinal permeability.
Leaky Gut is essentially a more tongue-friendly name for the medical term intestinal hyperpermeability. When parts of the intestine walls become weakened and damaged then this can result in a leaky gut as the tiny holes get bigger. With these damaged intestinal walls, it's said that harmful substances can then pass through the gut into the bloodstream. Symptoms of Leaky Gut are said possibly include the following.
Whilst the microbiota profiles of healthy versus Leaky Gut patients have yet to be clinically compared, this review did suggest dysbiosis could potentially contribute to Leaky Gut Syndrome caused auto-immune issues because of how the intestinal surface is exposed to both good & bad bacteria.
Probiotics For Leaky Gut Reddit Threads
In /r/Paleo, 10 years ago someone called throwaway6514 shared their experience with healing their leaky gut issues. They shared that they had terrible allergies all of their life including eczema that was helped by cutting out dairy. They later developed nasal allergies and leaky gut.
They eventually decided to add probiotic bacteria into their diet and follow a strict paleo non-processed food diet. The probiotics they took were from sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, and Jarrow Formulas Jarro-Dophilus EPS 5-Billion CFU which contains good bacteria like Lactococcus Lactis & Lactobacillus.
Reddit Threads For Other Conditions
5-Years ago in /r/Microbiome, sodumb4real started a thread asking if anybody had any success with rebuilding their gut with probiotics. They shared a little backstory where they mentioned a huge history of antibiotic usage because of an ecoli infection, acne, surgeries, and other reasons. They felt that this was the reason for their Leaky Gut.
One now since-deleted user said they had terrible eczema and leaky gut but they recovered by drinking homemade kefir, low-sugar, and minimal grains but pointed out that the kefir made the most difference in their opinion. Kefir is a fermented drink known to be packed with a lot of Lactobacillus probiotic bacteria.
Several years ago in /r/humanmicrobiome, Joeynowonreddit asked what probiotic they should take for inflammation and leaky gut. The top-rated reply from halfuser10 got the most thumbs up and they shared some great information. They suggested that first they should focus on restoring the gut lining with L-glutamine on an empty stomach, bone broth, avoid anti-inflammatory foods and then start taking probiotics later on in the healing process.
Can Probiotics Make Leaky Gut Worse?
Generally speaking, most probiotic bacteria reduce inflammation in the gut but this 2018 research from Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Tufts University School of Medicine suggested that those who already have Intestinal permeability may experience further inflammation from probiotic usage.
The study is super in-depth and complex but Lucy Mailing, PhD. broke it down well in her blog post. She summarized that if you use probiotics for Leaky Gut, you should choose them wisely by using clinically studied strains studied for leaky gut symptoms.
Closing Thoughts: Not ALL Probiotics Will Help
Based on my research from I believe that first restoring your gut lining and getting rid of any intestinal permeability before thinking about taking probiotic supplements.
Some of the best gram-positive strains I found that personally helped reduce inflammation in my intestines were L. Acidophilus and L. fermentum. I tried Saccharomyces Boulardii a type of yeast but found that it made things worse for me.
Probiotics alone probably won't be enough to help fix Leaky Gut in most people. Dietary & lifestyle changes will be necessary. Using some well-studied probiotic supplements like the ones I shared in this guide may be beneficial later on in your leaky gut journey.
Always talk to a doctor if you have any health issues. I am not a Doctor and the content in this guide is not medical advice. Probiotics made cause side effects and you should stop using them if they cause any issues. Leaky Gut could also have similar symptoms to something more sinister. It's best to get an official diagnosis from a Doctor.