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What is Acidophilus?

By Brendan McGuigan
Updated Jun 04, 2024
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The term acidophilus is used to describe a number of bacteria that help in human digestion. These bacteria include Lactobacilus acidophilus, L. casei, L. bulgaricus, among others. L. acidophilus is one of the most common bacteria found in these mixtures, but the term usually refers to a combination of it with other beneficial bacteria.

Acidophilus is touted for its many health benefits, some of which have been known about for thousands of years. The bacteria is found naturally throughout the human body, and most likely made its way into a food long ago, beginning a cycle of natural fermentation which people eventually learned to artificially duplicate.

When the bacteria are placed in a sugar-rich environment, they begin to eat the sugars they find there. They then convert these sugars into various other products, including lactic acid. This adds a distinctive taste, and lowers the pH of the food or liquid so that other flora do not find it as friendly an environment, helping to preserve the food. Yogurt is probably the most well-known of foods that make use of this bacteria, and it is very easy to notice the sour taste of the lactic acid when eating this food. Other foods that contain it include sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, kefir, and many other fermented food products.

Acidophilus can help protect the body against harmful bacteria, parasites, and other organisms. As it breaks down, it releases things such as hydrogen peroxide that create a toxic environment for unhealthy creatures in the body, helping to drive them out. It also plays an important role in digestion, helping to produce a number of chemicals that aid in the digestion process.

Many alternative modalities of healing look to acidophilus for a wide range of health benefits. In addition to basic digestive assistance, it is thought to help bolster the immune system as a whole. It is also thought to provide some relief from intestinal problems, such as diarrhea.

The fungal infection of Candida albicans, more commonly referred to as a yeast infection when it affects the genital area, is thought by some to be controlled by acidophilus. Since this bacteria occurs naturally in the genitals, and plays a role in warding off such infections, some people advocate using yogurt topically to help relieve and ultimately cure a yeast infection. Eating the yogurt or a supplement is also recommended.

Because antibiotics kill the so-called probiotics, such as acidophilus, as well as harmful bacteria, people who are undergoing treatment with antibiotics may find that they are more likely to develop yeast infections and similar problems. Experts often recommend that patients take supplements of acidophilus and eat foods rich in the bacteria after completing the treatment to help restore the body's natural balance.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By anon986886 — On Jan 28, 2015

I am facing some of these terrible problems, and am going to try these tabs.

By anon984204 — On Jan 06, 2015

I had horrible mouth ulcers my entire life. My parents tried everything and went to many doctors. You name it, we tried it. As a last resort, went to a psychic and she said take Acidophilus. One week later, no ulcers. Changed my life forever.

By anon947518 — On Apr 26, 2014

So glad I read all these post. They were very helpful. The thing I was wondering when is the best time of the day to take acidophilus? I suffer bowel pain cramps and trapped wind. I just started on these pills yesterday. Should they stay in the fridge or just in the cupboard out of sunlight?

By anon314165 — On Jan 16, 2013

I highly recommend the refrigerated acidophilus. Some natural sections in the grocery stores may have it or go to health food store. I take in in capsule form. I take the tablet and I open a capsule and place granules directly on my tongue. In the empty capsule I put the drops of grapefruit seed extract and close the capsule. The grapefruit Seed extract in the liquid form is good and you can take it in water, but it has a slight bitter taste so I put it in the empty capsule and then I don't have to taste it.

Pets/cats: Please note that acidophilus is also good for pets who have digestive or other ailments. When my cat was a kitten, it had kennel cough and a runny nose. The good bacteria in the acidophilus made the cat healthier and was able to combat the kennel ailments that were really chronic.

Look it up for more info. I use the same acidophilus capsules for the cat. He likes it and chomps it down (If he sees me take the bottle out of the fridge, he begs for his capsule. I guess he associates that the capsule made him feel better and got rid of the kennel related illness). My purebred cat was very ill and the vet costs were very high, but this helped him get better. I used both prescription and acidophilus to cure the ailments.

By anon286626 — On Aug 21, 2012

I have had diarrhea for over 38 years. They said I have IBSD --the worst that you can get. Nothing helps. I've done it all and never know when it is going to happen. I have diarrhea all the time except when I do not eat. It does not matter what I eat; it will happen.

By forreal — On Apr 26, 2012

I am a diabetic and get yeast infections often and also get yeast infections in my mouth and genital area. My gynecologist has given me scrips for yeast infections and they go away and return, so I looked on the computer for remedies for yeast infections and found this website for acidophilus.

After reading many posts, I decided to go to the pharmacy to purchase some acidophilus tablets. I started taking two tablets and noticed a decrease in my yeast infection the next day.

I've been taking it for four days and there are no signs of yeast infection orally. I suffered with IBS and no longer have symptoms of IBS, either. This pill works miracles!

By anon251355 — On Feb 29, 2012

Can Acidophilus treat Tinea Versicolor?

By anon246938 — On Feb 12, 2012

I am doing a science fair project and trying to culture lactobacillus acidophilus or bifidobacterium bifidum in petri dishes. I will be growing the strains from powder from probiotic capsules. What temperature should I incubate either one of these at and what type of media should I use to incubate them?

By vk123 — On Nov 21, 2011

@145145: I have known some individuals with Crohn's and they have made changes in their diets with amazing results. You may have already gone this route, but if you'd like to know more, let me know.

By vk123 — On Nov 21, 2011

@anon47548 and 80277: It has been recommended to me that children with constipation should see a Chiropractor, that something within the body isn't lined up properly and by getting adjusted things begin working better.

H20 is critical (juice and pop should be a treat, not an everyday occurrence). Just like adults, children should be drinking 1/2 their body weight in H20. Ex: child 50lb = 25 oz H20/day. Hope this helps.

By anon219463 — On Oct 03, 2011

I have been taking acidophilus for a year now, and I've noticed a huge improvement! No more yeast infections, my acne has improved somewhat, and it helped cure the nastiest yeast infection and BV after I took Amoxicillin. Also, I've noticed that it helps with general bloating and with weight loss. I usually take one tablet (1 million count) a day, but I find that taking two actually benefits me more! I even make my boyfriend take them.

I know acidophilus does a lot more for the human body, so why isn't this stuff better known? I tell almost all of my friends about acidophilus. Help spread the word on this probiotic, so many people can benefit from it!

By anon210817 — On Aug 31, 2011

@anon132053: Post 80 "I have been diagnosed with h. pylori."

I'm 67 and had H. Pylori all my life and eventually an ulcer. Had all the mega antibiotics but they failed. They said I'd have to live with it and take expensive tablets.

I took two dried whole garlic capsules every day for about six months. Now it's completely gone.

By anon207326 — On Aug 19, 2011

I started taking Acidophilus about a month ago, because I read that it cures thrush. Immediately, my thrush went away, and other positive things happened too. My chronic post nasal drip I've had for the past two years is now gone. The tonsil stones (tonsilloliths) I used to get all the time are now gone too. I have been trying to cure these things for years and am so happy I learned about Acidophilus.

By anon192894 — On Jul 03, 2011

can inserting an acidophilus capsule make you lose your virginity?

By anon189862 — On Jun 24, 2011

can you take Acidophilus with heart medications?

By anon180490 — On May 26, 2011

I have had cellulitis now for 10 weeks. I've been in hospital for four days and been given intravenous medication and various penicillins. I am now on my second dose of Metronidazole, praying that'll they will work.

My niece told me to acidophilus capsules to try & see if they will help. I have just taken the first one. I just pray they will work. --LindaW

By anon178531 — On May 21, 2011

I am so glad I found this site. I am 54, in fairly good shape, 6' tall and weigh 162. 150 would be ideal but I am not a clothes horse anymore. I was having the same problem with the stinking hoo-hoo business. The doctor gave me those pills, something with an m, (one poster wrote about it) and she was right: the smell would go away for a week or so but then come right back! Disgusting! Never had any discharge but that stinking smell was something else. I would just take a shower and an hour later you smell that smell.

I got the 1 billion probiotic, and even after only two days of taking, what a miracle! I am telling everyone I know, to pay it forward, and even have my husband taking it!

Peace and love to all, and I cannot thank you enough. Thanks to this site and all information, I am a new woman!

By anon177106 — On May 17, 2011

If the bottle is expired, will it hurt to take Acidophilus pro-boiotic blend with pectin or will it just have a weaker affect.

By anon170833 — On Apr 27, 2011

I am just so grateful I found this article! I have been having Bacterial Vaginosis for two years and just like everybody else who's visited the doctor for a cure, I was given antibiotics over and over again. It relieved it for some time but a few days after I've been intimate with my partner, the nasty BV comes right back.

It was very frustrating and very embarrassing and it was a constant issue I had to deal with for a long time. I just stopped going to the doctor because I know they're going to give me the same stuff anyway. Until I found this website that worked like a miracle for me.

I immediately tried buying Acidophilus supplement from GNC, Some folic acid supplements, too (1000 mg) and douched with hydrogen peroxide mixed with water (1/4 cup 3% hydrogen peroxide and 2 cups of water). Today is my second day of doing this and I haven't had any smelly and excessive discharge down there anymore!

Tomorrow is my last day of douching and I just have to continue the supplements I'm taking. I thank God and I thank you all for sharing this valuable information. Kudos!

By brebarb — On Apr 25, 2011

My husband was diagnosed with a bad bout of diverticulitis about four weeks ago and we thought he was getting better but now is experiencing pain in his abdomen again. Someone recommended he take acidophilus in liquid form but I read above where someone advises tablets are more effective then liquid. I am wondering if anyone can comment if this supplement would help and if they have seen a different benefit in liquid vs. tablet form.

By mrryanguy — On Apr 20, 2011

You should only get acidophilus pills. The liquid, chewable, and powder types are not as effective. The bottle should say Primadophilus.

By anon167730 — On Apr 13, 2011

Wow glad I found this thread. I've got a nasty case of pneumonia. I was given several rounds of high powered antibiotics before being sent home with more antibiotics to take after leaving the Hospital. Once I got where i could move a bit I began taking acidophilus. I'm having cramps, my stomach makes gurgling noises, mild diarrhea. I'm taking two different brands one of each as both have different stuff in them.

I'm just trying to make sure I'm getting the right stuff. I've always had bowel problems and thought I wouldn't make it until someone finally told me about probiotics. I take them every night before I go to bed. Wasn't sure when the best time to take them were but didn't want to encounter any problems at work.

By anon167351 — On Apr 12, 2011

acidophilus bought my platelets back to almost normal after having my spleen out. I was one that it did not work on. Taking a lot of antibiotics was my problem. I feel like I should, now.

By anon167330 — On Apr 12, 2011

For years I suffered from general abdominal problems: bloating, gas, alternate constipation/diarrhea, even what was diagnosed as diverticulitis!

Years ago, someone introduced us to Acidophilus when our kids got the stomach bug, which resulted in immediate relief! I never thought much about that except when we had a "bug" we would take acidophilus. Then when I continued to suffer from the abdominal problems, I thought, "I wonder if Acidophilus would help me?"

Well, it has completely eliminated all of those symptoms and problems! I take two capsules twice a day now with my other supplements. I have tons of energy, never feel fatigued, and don't get sick! It works - do it!

By anon166812 — On Apr 10, 2011

@anon165379 - I have the same issue. I also have tonsiloliths (nasty) kindly passed to me by an ex. When I take penicillin or other standard antibiotic, it kills all the good bacteria in the mouth but doesn't kill the stronger 'anaerobic' strains of bacteria.

A course of metronidazole (a stronger antibiotic) made my mouth taste fresh but taking pills isn't healthy and the problem soon returned. I'm going to experiment with a more natural solution, including avoiding bread, dairy, yeast, sugar etc. and taking acidophilus.

By anon165379 — On Apr 04, 2011

I discovered after taking some antibiotics, that my mouth had a foul Oder after brushing and using mouth wash. i started using Toms Toothpaste/mouthwash and other alternatives, with some improvement. Some one told me that i needed acidophilus to balance out my bacteria in my intestines, that it would make a difference. is that true? does this all make sense?

By anon163896 — On Mar 29, 2011

Does acidophilus help with Lyme disease? I completed six weeks of amoxicillin and now want to continue fighting this organism with good bacteria. I also eat yogurt every day.

By anon158926 — On Mar 09, 2011

I was diagnosed with GERD a while back, so I changed my diet. No sooner did I have that under control when I started having stomach problems. After a process of elimination I have given up dairy and faithfully take acidophilus on a daily basis. For the first time in 2 years, I am my old self again. Pain free!

By anon158296 — On Mar 06, 2011

I started taking acidophilus and have found that I no longer wake up with a back ache that was actually making me get out of bed in the morning because my back ached so much.

By anon155453 — On Feb 23, 2011

I was tormented and mentally drained by the effects of Bacterial Vaginosis. I am and was always a pretty, clean, attractive female but this nasty infection plagued me!

After thousands of dollars and even trips out to sea for "cures," some random crazy looking nurse told me to take acidophilus. It has been a miracle in a bottle for $25 bucks! I have never dealt with the nasty smell, discharge and embarrassment BV brings. I swear by it for any reason! I will forget my head before I forget to take my one little pill per day! Get it, whoever for whatever! Thank you crazy looking nurse. --user since 2006.

By anon153943 — On Feb 18, 2011

@wolfie1946: I don't know what that is, but i do know that it is most likely a urinary tract infection. have her eat at least a cup of yogurt a day, drink the plain cranberry juice (nothing like crangrape ocean spray, to much sugar!) stay away from douching, or itching anything, stay away from sugar, eat plenty of fruits and veggies. (both if i wasn't clear enough!) look for colors like red, green, orange, and yellow.

anything purple should be avoided. try calcium supplements maybe? (to help with pain or cramps until you can see a pediatrician.) Drink at least four quarts of water a day! wash regularly using anti bacterial soap (i recommend softsoap!) Stay away from anything scented or colorful for "down there" and take a lot of different vitamins. for her, there should be a one a day kids supplement she could take, to help balance everything, and for bleeding and leaking, try pads (not liners!) they have a thicker absorbent section. maybe an overnight pad if her bleeding is heavy (i recommend kotex overnight line) and if it is light, just liners will do.

Stay away from any tampons. This could keep any bacteria in the vagina, causing stronger irritation. and that really all i can think of. sorry, i know it was long, but i noticed a lot of people didn't really give you advice, they just told you they hope she gets better or chastised you for not getting her to a doctor yet, so i wanted to be thorough. good luck and god bless.

(and p.s. places like after-hour pediatrics have certified pediatricians that work for everything, are clean, helpful, answer questions and are somewhat cheaper than specialized pediatricians. they'd also see her as soon as possible if you like.) i hope this helps! tell her i hope she feels better!

By anon151391 — On Feb 10, 2011

I think its important to note that acidophilus is just one kind of probiotic. So many people think it's the only one you need, when in reality, it's good to look at different types of probiotic bacteria and take the ones that are best for you.

By tessa40 — On Jan 30, 2011

my sister told me that acidophilus helps alleviate psoriasis. does anyone have any first-hand knowledge of this?

By anon147410 — On Jan 29, 2011

I'm taking acidophilus and it really works for any type of vaginal problems. It keeps the ph leveled. also eat a cup of yogurt once a day. highly recommended.

By anon145145 — On Jan 22, 2011

I have been diagnosed with Crohn's Disease for over twenty years and have suffered hospitalization, massive doses of steroids, sometimes administered intravenously and experienced vomiting and uncontrollable bouts of diarrhea for at least three of those years.

Since taking acidophilus for the past five years, I have never felt so consistently well and am not prone to sickness bugs any more either. If anyone has any tips to assist with the "urgency" connected to Crohn's disease, I would be grateful, as this is the worst symptom I have left!

By anon138136 — On Dec 30, 2010

I make and consume sauerkraut, dill, and sour pickles. All are naturally self fermenting. Question: is there L. Acidophilus in or on these products or the resultant juices?

By anon132053 — On Dec 05, 2010

j have been diagnosed with h. pylori. i am allergic to medications, so am trying to find something to cure it. any suggestions?

By anon131876 — On Dec 04, 2010

I have insane diarrhea from time to time. Can't say enough good things about acidophilus. It's hilarious how the simplest things can change lives for the better.

By anon126376 — On Nov 12, 2010

@woolfie1946: Cranberry juice works miracles for urinary tract infections! I am sensitive and I get them occasionally and badly. A lot of people think you can drink the ocean spray cranberry juice or cranberry juice cocktail and it will work, but that's not true; it has too much sugar in it. You must drink the pure cranberry juice.

It is very bitter and very hard to drink, but it works You can find it at trader joes or any health food store.

By anon123851 — On Nov 03, 2010

I recommend you do your own research first, but here is what I gratefully discovered and thought I would share with all of you:

I have had both severe GERD/Acid Reflux and IBS for years now. I have been hospitalized for both more times than I can count due to the severe pain, vomiting, and dehydration. The doctors gave me multiple meds that worked for a little bit and then just made me worse (side effects and no longer worked). I was at my wits’ end, when someone told me about acidophilus. It has been an absolute godsend. I can’t begin to explain how it gave me my life back. I take it every morning before I eat anything. On a rare occasion I still need to take a Tums for a little burning, but other than that I am absolutely fantastic.

I have also been diagnosed with severe fatty liver disease and am a borderline diabetic. My doctors and I were unable to stop the extreme liver pain/inflammation or get my enzymes or triglycerides under control through just my diet or meds. Unfortunately, I cannot exercise like others can (though I love it) because I became disabled a number of years ago after seven failed back surgeries.

With all of this silliness (LOL) I also caught the regular flu, H1N1, had severe bronchitis (I was diagnosed with asthma at six weeks old), and had shingles in a matter of only four months. My immune system was seriously wonky. LOL. Thus, I finally came to the realization that no matter what the docs said about natural/homeopathic etc. type medicines being useless, that I had to do the research and come up with whatever I could to help me once and for all.

Through this tireless research, I found supplements that would best help all of the above. Also, interestingly enough, actual renowned medical researchers/doctors (especially in the UK/Western Europe and some in the US) have done tests/trials that have proven or are in the midst of proving that these supplements do indeed work, which still confuses me as to why they are frowned upon by many more doctors than accepted and promoted.

I take milk thistle (lowers liver enzymes), Resveratrol (immune system, type 2 diabetes, and liver), vitamin C (helps immune system, protects liver, diabetes), B-12 (due to fatigue adds energy) and Omega-3-acid ethyl esters (lower triglycerides, heart, etc.) and they have been miraculous. Where conventional medicine failed to help me time and time again, after hundreds of tests to continuously check my enzymes, triglycerides, etc. and nothing bringing them even close to normal ranges, these natural supplements have all done their jobs and then some. I have not seen a normal liver enzyme in two years or a very low in range triglyceride in several years until now. My glucose is also back in normal ranges too. It’s just amazing!

I have slowly added other supplements (because I do not want to mess up my liver enzymes/glucose etc. again, I must be careful) I have researched which include l-Carnosine (liver, muscle/arthritis, nerve problem including due to complications from diabetes) and alpha lipoic acid (brain for early menopause brain fog, liver, diabetes). The alpha lipoic acid was also recommended for my mom by her renowned neurologist because she has the beginnings of Alzheimer’s, so it is a remarkable supplement indeed. I will let you know how well the additions work when I know.

The acidophilus, as a side note, did also stop my chronic vaginitis and the odor that was an outcome from my early menopause in its tracks. I didn’t even think of it for that reason, but it ended up being a huge added bonus.

I am now a complete believer in supplements, but I just wish that more doctors and insurance providers were too, so that they’d be covered by health insurance, considering their cost and especially since they did the job and had less side effects than the conventional media was given.

Disclaimer: Although I hope my due diligence/research saves a lot of time and remarkably helps some of you as it has so helped and changed my life, I still insist that you don’t just blindly follow my lead, because what did indeed work incredibly for me, may still not work for you. You must do your own due diligence/targeted research and make sure you get the doses etc., right, so as not to cause any toxicity or interaction with them and/or your conventional medicine scripts you may have to take too.

By anon122900 — On Oct 30, 2010

I read somewhere that a good way to get rid of bv is a three step process:

1. make a hydrogen peroxide douche (using distilled water). 2. Insert acidophilus supplements in vagina (after using douche); and 3. Take folic acid.

Is it safe to insert the supplement inside your vagina vs. taking it orally? and is the peroxide douche safe to use?

By anon120704 — On Oct 21, 2010

I took acidophilus while breastfeeding and it did help get rid of thrush in my baby's mouth and in my breasts after a few weeks of taking it daily. It helps to keep your body's normal yeast in balance.

I was told to take it on an empty stomach and wait at least 30 minutes before eating. This helps it pass through the stomach acid and into the intestinal tract. The reason is that your stomach acids are higher when food is consumed. It is best to keep refrigerated to keep the cultures live and active. Having at least 1-2 billion CFU (colony forming units) per capsule is what my lactation consultant recommended.

By anon114554 — On Sep 29, 2010

I have been having problems with post nasal drip for nearly a year and am nearly at my wit's end. I cannot clear my throat, and produce large amounts of mucus all the time - yucky I know, but that's how it is.

I went to see a homeopathic practitioner recently after having two medical procedures without outcome. She recommended taking acidophilus, and vastly increasing the amount of water that I had hitherto been drinking, because of bladder issues.

I have read all of the comments made on this site, and it would seem that acidophilus may be a miracle cure. Wish me luck, and hope all of you get better too. So sorry about the little girl. No child should have to go through what she is suffering right now. God bless

By anon111893 — On Sep 18, 2010

I suffer from anxiety, i was also on an acid reflex pill called mylan-omeprazole because i was having pain in my ear nothing in my stomach. However, three months ago i started getting bloated, sometimes discomfort and sometimes diarrhea. So i went to a doctor who told me to stop taking the mylan-omeprazole pill and start taking acidophilus.

For two weeks my bowel movements returned to proper color. I had blood tests, x rays, stool samples. Everything came back normal. Any suggestions?

By anon103971 — On Aug 14, 2010

Acidophilus seems to abate menopausal and post menopausal vaginitis and ph changes causing odor. No doctor ever prescribed this, but I thought I would give it a whirl and it works.

By anon102369 — On Aug 07, 2010

i recently purchased spring valley acidophilus, and i was wondering if it absolutely has to be refrigerated? I know on the bottle it says to do so after opening, but i figured since it's kept on the shelf in the store, would it be OK for me to just store it somewhere room temperature and dry?

By anon96743 — On Jul 16, 2010

for bionic: It sounds like you might have a food allergy. Possibly you are gluten intolerant (no wheat, rye, barley and possibly oat, and no stuff made from them). There are blood tests now to determine that, and if so, and you stop eating that stuff you'll start feeling great within a few months! --Anne

By anon87215 — On May 28, 2010

For the eight year old: you need to find out what is causing her urinary tract infections! Do not let her have a bubble bath, as this causes them for me and my nine year old.

In the meantime try a diaper rash cream for the burning and itching. I myself have used crisco shortening. Clean the area well and then apply crisco or diaper rash cream or vaseline, and it will help for a good while. This child should not have an infection so bad that she has blood in her urine.

I would find a pediatrician or urologist who could see her asap no matter how far you have to drive.

By giovanna6962 — On May 14, 2010

my grandson has bad allergies and sinus infections and not good bowel movements. can this help him?

By anon80277 — On Apr 26, 2010

My three year old grandson has severe constipation, and has been on miralax for months. Has anyone had good results giving acidophikidz to a young child with this problem?

By anon79162 — On Apr 21, 2010

I came to this article because I had a real discomforting case of vaginal yeast infections.

I had a bottle of acidophilus at home that I had not taken for a while and took one capsule this morning, but not because of the yeast. I just decided that I was going start taking my supplements again. This was suggested to me some time ago by a naturopathic doctor.

Anyway, surprisingly, the yeast infections seem to have resolved, so I wanted to know if there was any link. Thank God there is.

By anon78365 — On Apr 18, 2010

My dad has had problems with stomach pain and constipation. would acidopholis help his condition. He has had every test done in the book and was diagnosed with just an inflamed stomach.

By anon77003 — On Apr 12, 2010

My mother, who is 88, was plagued by urinary tract infections after undergoing emergency for a fractured hip. She was constantly on antibiotics, which temporarily stopped the infections, but they kept returning.

A friend suggested taking acidophilus capsules 2x a day, along with yogurt with active cultures in the morning. She also drinks a tea made with 2 cranberry capsules at each meal. It has helped to eliminate the need for antibiotics.

She has never had a flu shot and made it through the winter in excellent health!

By anon76856 — On Apr 12, 2010

With my recent strep attack i was prescribed antibiotics. At Patient First they also printed out a little piece of paper that recommended acidophilus. I had heard of it before and picked up the Spring Valley brand at walmart.

at first i was worried about a yeast infection so for every antibiotic i take one acidophilus. No signs of the yeast infection i would normally get and i notice my food digestion is better.

Surprisingly it has absolutely helped my vaginosis, no signs. once i stop the antibiotic, i plan to only use the acidophilus once or twice daily.

By anon74114 — On Mar 31, 2010

To @anon17471: I use ProBiotic Acidophilus with pectin for what the doctor's called Thrush in my mouth. My tongue was horrible. It was white with clumps of junk.

i had been on antibiotics for about six months. they said the antibiotic killed all the good bacteria in my body as well. they gave me a tablet to dissolve in my mouth three times a day. it was yuck. then i went to the dentist and when he saw my tongue he came back with a bottle of the acidophilus. that was three years ago and I've been using it since.

i hardly ever have to take an antibiotic anymore but when i do i take one or two with each antibiotic and I've not had thrush anymore. it cleared the thrush up in just a few days and i had been fighting it for six months. my over all health got so much better.

i went all last year without getting sick. when i got sick this year i took these instead of an antibiotic and i got well just as quick. I'm no doctor, but what i know is this will make the mouth better.

sometimes before the white gunk appears your mouth will be very sore, after that is when the gunk appears. at this stage it is a bad case of thrush. mine was horrible and healed so quick once i started this. Hope it helps all of you as it has me.

By anon73609 — On Mar 28, 2010

I am lactose intolerant. can I take acidophilus instead of lactaid? thank you

By anon73326 — On Mar 26, 2010

trader joe's greek yogurt with honey adds the beneficial acidophilus cultures (like all five of them!) after pasteurization, so the cultures are alive and well when you eat it.

more expensive, but give me actual food over 'simply supplements' anytime. go nature! heartLove!

By anon73131 — On Mar 25, 2010

The best way to get acidophilus in your food is to eat kefir. It is like yogurt, but much more cultured with healthy bacteria. You can also find kefir cultures at whole foods and start making your own.

For bacterial vaginosis I take acidophilus pills (16 billion a capsule) and folic acid (400mg) twice a day, as well as douching once a day with five drops of silver colloidal and three drops of tea tree oil. Keep this up for seven days, and continue to take the acidophilus and folic acid daily.

By buttons — On Mar 25, 2010

my daughter told me about acidophilus. i have diarrhea a lot. I will try it. hope it works.

By kwooli01 — On Mar 24, 2010

To stevenhiller: I don't know the answer one way or another about the spoon, but it makes sense since it is recommended not to store most foods in metal containers since it will spoil it quicker.

As for the yogurt, I was told by my pharmacist today that eating yogurt to get your bacterial levels back on track is a moot point because pasteurization kills most of the good bacteria and recommended a supplement, which is inexpensive. I bought a 100 count bottle for $10, three tablets per day for an adult. I'm thinking that Activia yogurt is more expensive than that! I hope this helps.

The reason why this was brought to my attention is because my four year old daughter has been having recurring athlete's foot problems. Her pediatrician has been giving me the run around with nasty oral anti-fungals, claiming she is too young for a topical treatment. Not one word from him in months about a yeast imbalance! I am not happy with him right now, needless to say.

The pharmacist did recommend the topical for quicker relief, while the tablets will take a few days to regulate her yeast balance in her body. He even said that unbalanced yeast can lead to behavioral problems and one of the physical tests ran before ADHD is conclusively diagnosed is the balance of 'normal bacterial flora' in their body.

By anon69019 — On Mar 05, 2010

I have BV, So i'm pretty sure that is what it is. I have tried everything and it doesn't seem to work. Does Acidophilus really help and do i need to use vagigel while on it so it completely goes away? help -- what do i do?

By anon67104 — On Feb 23, 2010

I have MS. I have bad urinary tract infections and I can't take antibiotics. Will acidophilus help my UTIS? Thanks!

By anon66350 — On Feb 19, 2010

I am on antibiotics quite often and always take acidophilus (two hours before or after antibiotics)with them. I never have problems with yeast infections. I usually use the liquid form as it comes in several flavors that are easy to swallow.

My dietitian told me to look for yogurt that contains at least Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus casei and Bifidobacterium bifidum and to purchase ones that are protected from heat, light and moisture.

By anon60554 — On Jan 14, 2010

can't believe how much it has helped me with bacterial vaginosis which i always thought was a yeast infection. Also helped with bad breath! everyone should take it.

By anon58788 — On Jan 04, 2010

i have a urinary tract infection and always get a yeast infection while taking antibiotics. i am taking macrobid and felt the yeast infection coming on. i started taking 2 acidophilus pills with each meal and inserting one in my vagina morning, noon, and at bedtime. it works! i feel a lot better and may not have to take diflucan after meds are all taken!

By anon58776 — On Jan 04, 2010

This sounds promising. Everything I have read in here seems to be focused on females. Is acidophilus okay for males to take?

By nsmukundan — On Jan 04, 2010

Well organized and written. I have written an article on Benefits of Acidophilus.

By anon55918 — On Dec 10, 2009

Regarding refrigerating acidophilus. Yes, refrigerate it if possible. The refrigeration helps keep the acidophilus at its maximum strength.

I've purchased the same acidophilus from a major retailer, as well as, a high end health food store. The health food store will spend the extra money and refrigerate the product to help retain the highest quality!

By anon50983 — On Nov 02, 2009

can you take acidophilus while taking an antibiotic?

By anon47548 — On Oct 05, 2009

my 7 year old daughter is constantly constipated. will this stuff help her to have regular bowel movements?

By anon46270 — On Sep 23, 2009

My daughter and I had been vomiting and other constant bowel movements. I tried everything to relieve the cramping, bowel movements and vomiting. The only medication that worked beside without taking antibiotics was acidophilus extra strength from CVS,within two days the cramping stopped, vomiting, bloating and constant bowel movements. We were able to eat yogurt and chicken noodle soup. So, I am keeping her and myself on acidophilus! I think it does work at least for the horrible stomach flu we encountered.

By anon46017 — On Sep 22, 2009

To anon39878: I have bacterial vaginosis and recently tried a new PRO-Biotic product specifically made for feminine health. My symptoms (bad smell and heavy discharge) improved in two days. Look in the family planning section at your local store.

By anon44765 — On Sep 10, 2009

Can you overdose on probiotics? My mother is 94 and has been fighting C.diff and UTI with antibiotics. She may have the C.diff again. It seems that as she is transferred from nursing home to hospital and back, sometimes the probiotics are stopped and not started again. We would like to give her over the counter probiotics but I am afraid to give her too much. Can you help me? Thanks -mj

By anon44626 — On Sep 09, 2009

To Woolfie 1946: As a medic in emergency medicine I have worked with a lot of doctors over the years. The problem is that many see dollar signs rather than compassion. I'm uncertain how long ago your post was but you can definitely aid in your grandaughter's health by giving her cranberry juice and acidophilus in yogurt. I have been a sufferer of Candida for many months now, really I have had symptoms for years, but my physician kept telling me the old "Nothing is wrong with you" line to the point of frustration. I started taking acidophilus supplements and for the first time in many many months I am stomach pain and acid reflux free. It's a complete miracle in my opinion and I would persuade anyone to add it to their diet.

Next, you cannot allow your grandaughter to wait for four months with symptoms such as she has. Her physician can't have much of a conscience if he can sleep well at night while allowing her to suffer like she has. If nothing comes of your insistence, take her to the emergency room. Blood in the urine can indicate a serious condition, especially coupled with pain, vaginal itching and incontinence. At eight years old, its not out of the question but again, not common to have kidney stones which might cause her symptoms.

By anon42713 — On Aug 23, 2009

Does Acidophilus help with vitiligo? If so, how?

By anon41544 — On Aug 15, 2009

I have pain in my belly button. A sharp stabbing pain that is only sometimes associated with food. Sometimes I have the pain just randomly through the day. It does not seem to be any one kind of food or all kinds of food.

I heard that acidophilus may work for my pain. Is that true?

By anon41392 — On Aug 14, 2009

To anon 21176: Hormone changes during pregnancy can and do bring on bouts of skin rashes, etc. However a yeast infection of the breast is not that uncommon. Treatment is normally via a topical cream, such as those used for vaginal yeast infections. As with any supplements, check with your doctor before using Acidophilus while you are pregnant.

Good luck!

By anon39878 — On Aug 04, 2009

i am having so much bacterial vaginosis. can probotics help me? anyone?

By anon39392 — On Aug 01, 2009

will acidophilus cure urinary infection. I am allergic to antibiotics that will cure this. help

By anon39329 — On Jul 31, 2009

About the eight year old - Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) when taken in higher than RDA amounts, will be voided into the bladder, and make its pH more acidic - thereby discouraging more of the bacteria from raising families in there. Extremely effective and inexpensive way to control recurrent bladder infections. I hope this helps!

By anon39169 — On Jul 30, 2009

acidophilus has really really helped me

having ibs for a long time. this really works.

take the rexall brand 1 pill a day and it works

By anon37717 — On Jul 21, 2009

does acidophlus bacteria survive freezing?

By anon35747 — On Jul 07, 2009

My mother was diagnosed with severe acid reflux a few years ago. She rarely had heart burn, she had horrible pain. She was taking Prilosec OC every day. I took a nutrition class taught by a nurse. She told us that acidophilus was beneficial and explained some of the benefits. I told my mother and she began to take it. Within two weeks, she had stopped the Prilosec OC and very rarely has to take any form of indigestion reliever. She is able to drink a glass of milk if she does have heatrburn, but the pain is gone. Acidophilus is wonderful for acid reflux.

By anon35455 — On Jul 05, 2009

A co-worker suggested acidophilus when I complained about having acid refleux. Has anyone had any luck with this supplement in relation with this problem? Have tried three medicines prescribed by my docter and all have such bad side effects. Please help, I am at my wits end.

By MrsTuggy — On Jun 12, 2009

I have a problem with digesting foods and also constipation. Thank you so much for the information. I don't really care for yogurt, so I am hoping that the tablets will work for me. I'll keep you posted.

By anon33315 — On Jun 04, 2009

I've been taking acidophilus for about 3weeks and this past week I have had a very strong metallic taste. Is this a side effect?

By anon30220 — On Apr 15, 2009

Thanks for the easy to understand information.

BTW: about the 8yr old grand daughter, *Parents'* get her to doctors that care!! Her condition sounds extremely dangerous.

Mike B


By anon29514 — On Apr 03, 2009

So many questions lol. I'll answer what I can, but note, I'm no doctor.

Regarding the 8 year old granddaughter with the burning sensations and diarrhea. I don't think it would hurt, to get the child on a juice diet and get the child to eat yogurt. Just be conscious of the nutrition and ingredient labels; avoid juices with too much sugar, or not "complete" juice. You will find some juice that may have 100% Daily value of Vitamin C, but contains, maybe only 5 or 10% juice.


I'd follow the directions on the drug facts, or as advised by your doctor.

I usually take one caplet daily of the Spring Valley Acidophilus, with a meal (take the tablet with water or juice, then get my meal ready). Acidophilus is one of those things you gotta shop around for, as there are so many brands, and consistencies. Spring Valley contains 1 billion cultures, but I've seen some that tout up to 5 billion. I don't know if "more is better" though.


I'd recommend contacting your doctor. Most "supplements" are to only be consumed by adults 18 years of age and older. But I realize some may have directions for "youth" - check the packaging though. Though, something as simply as yogurt (make sure it has live cultures...those gogurt packets and such don't...afaik). Personally, due to the diarrhea, I'd contact the doctor and see what they suggest.


Taking probiotics with your antibiotics shouldn't hurt, but I would talk with your doctor regarding your experiences with the antibiotics that are being prescribed, and ask them if probiotics are recommended. As far as 3x daily...no idea there, most probiotics I've seen say one tablet daily with a meal.


Correct, acidophilus will aid in neutralizing the pH levels in your vaginal area. I've even read success stories of females who would take regular yogurt (containing live cultures) and would "apply" the yogurt to the vaginal area at bed time. Sure, it can get messy (my girlfriend tried it...ewww) but it did work. I'd recommend laying down a plastic mattress protector though...lol.


Good question, as far as refrigeration, I've found that it varies from brand to brand. Acidophilus Pearls do not need to be refrigerated, nor does the Spring Valley (walmart brand), *but*, I got a cheap bottle from CVS pharmacy, which stated it should be refrigerated...since the "damage" (may or may not) have been done, I don't think taking it would hurt any, but check the package, if it's expired, toss it out, if it's not, throw it in the fridge and take as normal.


This sounds odd, I would consider consulting a professional. Acidophilus is touted for aide in intestinal areas (and down the valley, through the vaginal area, for females) - I don't think it would help any for a rash on your belly/breast area.

If your regular doctor can't diagnose it, try a dermatologist (skin doctor), it could be eczema or even dry skin? As far as acidophilus and pregnancy, I'm not sure, I'd check the packaging, most packages will say if it's safe for pregnant/lactating woman or not.


Acidophilus may help you. Try out Acidophilus Pearls, or even a store brand Acidophilus (I like Spring Valley, from walmart when it's available) - how is your diet? I'd like to suggest taking a fiber supplement such as psyllium hust (Metamucil or equivalent). Start taking one dose daily (after a meal), preferably before bad.

Depending how that works, move up to 2 doses, maybe one in the morning after breakfast, and then one at night, after dinner but before bed.

Plain and simple, most of us do not have the perfect diets, and do not get enough fiber intake. This supplement will help you. Also, consider your water consumption. Fiber may "bloat" you, as it will "bulk up" your stool (no more loose stool), but if you don't consume enough water, it won't be able to work to it's full potential either.


hmm, you may want to consider seeing a doctor regarding your mouth/tongue fungus - acidophilus primarily works in the intestinal area, and don't think it may have any use for what is ailing your mouth...though then again I was surprised to see it can help stop bad breath! so who knows.


Check the label, I've seen "GoGurt" packages, which do not contain the words "contains live cultures" or whatever, so to answer the first question, nope, not all carry this probiotic. Not sure on making yogurt, but if the company specifically sells "another" product for probiotic starter, it's possible the "other" start kit does not contain acidophilus. I'd contact the company and get the details.


Acidophilus may help with the effects you mentioned. I know it helped me. As far as the pharmacist/labeling it's a hard decision. I know most packaging will say simply "take with a meal" - you may get a better effect by taking the dose 10-30 minutes before the meal, since by the time your digested food reaches the intestines, your microflora will be set just right, to properly digest the food. So I'd go with the pharmacist.


This had me curious too, like these "acidohilus pearls" - 11 bucks for 20 or 30 caplets seemed kind of high, and sure, they got good testimonials, but I don't know if it's worth the money. But good point. When I discovered acidophilus, I tried out the generics/store brands before the expensive ones, and found Spring valley to work just fine.

From what I've read/understand, the stomach acid is supposed to aid in breaking down the capsule's "shell" - and by the time it reaches the intestines, the acidophilus is ready to be absorbed and used.

But ya, I gotta say, acidophilus has helped my gas and constipation, and regularity.

Though, some/all of this could be attributed to my fiber supplement too, I suppose? But either way, it works, I now go at least once a day :)

By woolfie1946 — On Mar 18, 2009

Please help if you can. My 8 year old granddaughter is being treated with antibodies for a urinary tract infection. This has gone on for some time & now she has blood in her urine, intense burning on urination & extreme itching. She reported that she wet herself at school- couldn't get to bathroom soon enough. Her Dr. (not a pediatrician) referred her to a urologist who can't see her for 4 months. I'm thinking yogurt with live cultures & cranberry juice. Should we look for yogurt with acidophilus as an ingredient? I've already suggested my daughter find a pediatrician, but nobody seems to take a new patient very soon. Any help would be appreciated.

By marysun — On Mar 06, 2009

i would like to know if i should take probiotic three time a day? before or after meals. thank you marysun

By anon27702 — On Mar 04, 2009

Can you give a form of this to toddlers? My toddler just had antibiotics for an ear infection and has had terrible diarrhea for days.

Pooped Mom

By anon26262 — On Feb 10, 2009

My stomach cannot handle antibiotics, period! I become so sick I can't leave the bathroom. When I am sick, especially with something like strep, and the doctor gives me antibiotics I usually have to try about 3 different antibiotics before I find something my stomach can somewhat tolerate!

A friend recently told me to try taking acidophilus tablets 3 times a day separate from the antibiotic and see how I do. So, I have been trying it and it seems to help a lot! I am not nearly as gassy nor do I have diarrhea anymore! I say it works!!!! :)

By itsme414 — On Dec 26, 2008

Acidophilus also helps with parasites as it is stated above. I had a problem with Trich which was passed on to me two times by my partner. I had a hard time getting rid of it. My doctor prescribed many different oral and topical meds to no avail. I began taking Acidophilus 2 capsuls up to 3 times a day for about 3-4 days and I was totally cleared of the Trich, no more itching or foul smelling discharge and no more having to wear panty liners everyday. It really worked for me, I'm so thankful to God!!!!

By anon22277 — On Dec 01, 2008

Acidophilus was recommended to me by a gyno for an excessively high PH level in my female parts.. a problem I've tried to fix with diet changes for over 7months. The area was extremely salty, the consistency was not normal, and almost to the point where it could easily become a yeast infection. I started taking it and about a week and a half later, it was already a dramatic change and on it's way "back to normal." I feel like this is a testimony, haha.. but I'll be honest and admit it's helped my relationships and general health in that part of my body. HIGHLY recommended for more than your intestines. ;)

By anon22052 — On Nov 26, 2008

was wondering if acidophilus needs to be refrigerated? I had it out of the refrigerator for a couple months and was wondering if it's still effective even though its been out for a while...

By anon21611 — On Nov 18, 2008

My mother-in-law is a real health freak and she recommended acidophilus for my stomach pains after i eat and it is the only thing i've taken that really helps.

By anon21176 — On Nov 11, 2008

Can acidophilus help with a horrible itchy rash that started in my belly and is spreading up in my breast the doctors gave me some creams and said that I had a condition that occurs during pregnancy o yea i forgot to tell I'm pregnant. And if this could help is it safe on pregnancy? I'm desperate! please help.

By bionic — On Nov 01, 2008

I have to help my self go to the bathroom everyday with my finger i know gross. But i never feel like im done and my bowels are never really hard or formed. And also i always have gas and i am always bloated. I could really use some answers.

By anon19907 — On Oct 21, 2008

my dr. had me take this a few times a day.

reason? i was coming off pain killers. opiates generally constipate you but when you discontinue them, you get the opposite effect. This helped out a lot actually, i kind of thought of it as snake oil, till it really worked.

By anon18346 — On Sep 20, 2008

I am the daughter of a herbalist and he has healed lots of people with many infections. Some people that were on chemo. took acidophilus (along with other herbs) and are now in remission for up to 20 years.

Good work with you what are doing with this site WiseGeek. Kudos

By anon17471 — On Aug 30, 2008

I have a mouth/tongue fungus. Would I benefit by taking acidophilus ? I am currently using a prescription of Nystatin as a mouth rinse.

By mkearney — On Aug 06, 2008

I make my own yogurt from a starter. The company I buy the starter from also makes an acidophilus starter. From my reading on this site and others it seems that all ygourt will have acidophilus in it. First question: is this true. Second question: how can I increase the amount of acidophilus in the yogurt (or can I?) I have thought of adding a capsule of an acidophilus supplement but don't know if it would be any better than just taking the supplement i.e. would it multiply and grow more cells in the yogurt culture?

Any information or guidance would be appreciated.

By acidophilus — On Jun 24, 2008

I was always had Stomach issues, flatulence, diarrhea, etc...I heard taking taking Acidophilus will help control it. Is this true? The label recommends to take the pill 30 minutes after I eat but the pharmacist said to take it 30 minutes before. Who is right? thanks

By brendan — On Mar 23, 2008

acidophilus' passage into the intestines can be hampered somewhat by stomach acid, but it is not a huge issues. many makers of pro-biotics overstate the case, in an attempt to promote their own 'stomach acid resistant' probiotics, or the benefits of their enteric-coated supplements.

in truth, while stomach acid can affect acidophilus somewhat, it is minimal. it is best to take your supplements before a meal, simply because at that time the stomach acid content in your stomach is at its lowest - but beyond that you don't need to worry too much about it.

as for stainless steel spoons - the only mentions of this somehow damaging acidophilus have all been colloquial. i have yet to find any study that seems to validate it, so for now i am chalking it up to urban legend. but, if anyone finds otherwise, please post something with a citation.

By wwjda2z — On Mar 20, 2008

How well does acidophilus get past stomach acid and into the intestines?

By anon10141 — On Mar 20, 2008

How is an acidophilus supplement absorbed into the body. Does stomach acid destroy it?

By stevenhiller — On May 10, 2007

I heard from someone that eating yogurt with a stainless steel spoon degrades or has a counter effect on the acidophilus bacteria. Is there any truth to this and what is the reaction occurring?

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