Idea Center
Expert Insight

How Many CFUs?

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Nutrition can be a numbers game: lower calories, less fat, higher protein and increased vitamin levels. When it comes to research supported probiotic ingredients in product formulations, the higher the number of colony-forming units, or CFUs, the better, right? 10 billion yesterday, 100 billion today, 1 trillion tomorrow?

More is Not Always Better

When it comes to CFUs and the benefits they provide, science speaks. Some regulatory agencies have published guidelines, and some experts have offered specified minimum targets, like 10 million or 1 billion, at which CFUs confer health benefits. Ultimately, specific claims need to be substantiated with clinical research that documents the strains and number of CFUs in the final formula. That’s because, as mentioned, probiotic characteristics and health benefits are strain-specific and CFU count-specific. They don’t all behave the same way.

Probiotics cannot be put into one generalized bucket for digestive and immune health benefits. Rather, individual strains may support claims at the minimum quantities in the published literature. More is not necessarily better, so it is critical to formulate wisely. Furthermore, since consumers will continue to become ever more curious about the efficacy of ingredients, it is important that a product can provide science-supported evidence.

BC30™ Provides Well-documented Efficacy

The research that demonstrates BC30™ (Bacillus coagulans GBI-30, 6086) can provide digestive health, immune health, and protein utilization benefits gives manufacturers the ability to make claims in certain markets based on specific CFU measurements. Probiotic ingredients like BC30™ can provide transparency around its efficacy and benefits, because it is backed by published studies. BC30™ is also the first spore-forming probiotic to receive GRAS status from the FDA, confirming the safety of the science-backed strain. This helps explain why today it can be found in more than 1,000 leading food, beverage, sports nutrition and companion animal products around the world.


– Digest More –