THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PROBIOTICS AND PREBIOTICS

 

There are some significant differences between probiotic and prebiotic supplements in terms of what they are, how they work and what they do in the digestive system. Here’s what you need to know.

 PrebioticsProbiotics
What are they?

Prebiotics are a special type of complex carbohydrate found in a variety of foods and food supplements that naturally feed the ‘good’ types of bacteria in your gut, such as lactobacilli and bifidobacteria.

Probiotics are live so-called ‘friendly’ or ‘good’ bacteria found in a variety of foods and food supplements. These include bacteria such as lactobacilli and bifidobacteria.
What do they do?

Prebiotics feed and increase the friendly bacteria in your gut, without feeding bad microorganisms or pathogens. These ‘good’ bacteria play a significant role in bolstering your immune system and keeping your digestive system healthy.

Probiotic bacteria play a number of vital roles in the body, including helping to regulate the immune system, aiding the digestion and absorption of food, producing essential vitamins, and contributing to digestive health.
How do they work? Prebiotics are resistant to heat, oxygen, the body’s enzymes and acids, and are therefore not destroyed, digested or absorbed as they travel through your digestive system. 

They reach the colon intact, where they feed your naturally occurring good bacteria, helping them to grow and multiply.

Probiotics are ‘perishable’ bacteria. As with most bacteria they are susceptible to heat and oxygen. Journeying through the body, they come into contact with enzymes and acids in our mouth and stomach, which can kill the bacteria. Those that reach the lower part of the gut must compete with other types of bacteria present to get established. A high intake of the bacteria is therefore necessary to see any benefits.

 

 

 

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The root of many health issues lies in the gut

Unlike many probiotics Bimuno reaches the lower gut intact for maximum nutritional impact

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Bimuno reaches the gut intact to support the bacteria

Relevant FAQ

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Is Bimuno suitable for vegetarians?

Only Bimuno powder is suitable for vegetarians. None of the products are suitable for vegans.

Is Bimuno suitable for Kosher or Halal and similar diets?

Bimuno is not currently certified as Kosher nor Halal.

Is Bimuno gluten free?

Yes, Bimuno is suitable for people with gluten free diets.

What is Bimuno?

Bimuno® is a revolutionary range of food supplements that work at the very centre of health and wellness – the gut. The principle active ingredient in Bimuno® belongs to a group of beneficial nutrient fibres (oligosaccharides) also found in breast milk.

Who can take Bimuno?

Anyone from children aged 3 years (in the case of Bimuno powder) to adults (including the elderly.

Young children should only take Bimuno under the supervision of an adult.

When should I take Bimuno?

We recommend you take it in the morning after breakfast so that it becomes part of a daily routine. 

How often should I take Bimuno?

Taking Bimuno every day can help you maintain the balance of friendly bacteria in your digestive system.

It is recommended that Bimuno be taken regularly as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle

How do I take Bimuno?

  • BIMUNO POWDER: Our original product available in convenient powder single dose sachets
    • Adults and young person over 12: simply add one sachet daily to your food and drink (5.5g). Children aged 3 to 11: take half a sachet daily (2.75g)
    • Bimuno powder can be added and stirred into everyday food and drink such as cereal, coffee or tea. For easy dispersion we recommend mixing with a hot beverage. When adding to cold drinks dispersion is best accomplished by firstly forming a paste with a little warm water,adding the required drink, then stirring rapidly. If any small lumps remain, this will not impact Bimuno’s effectiveness. Bimuno is flavour free and does not alter the taste of your food or drink.
  • BIMUNO IBAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles
    • Adults and children over 12: take two pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast. Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.
  •  BIMUNO IMMUNAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles
    • Adults and children over 6: take two pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast. Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.
  •  BIMUNO TRAVELAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles
    • Adults and children over 6: take three pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast. It is recommended pastilles are taken daily seven days before you travel and each day whilst abroad.

Is it safe to take Bimuno long term?

Bimuno is perfectly safe for long term usage, in fact we recommend Bimuno be taken on a regular daily basis. The recommended servings should be observed at all times.

Is Bimuno a medicine?

No. Bimuno is a food supplement that works naturally in the gut

How much is postage?

Orders within the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man have Free Delivery. For orders outside the UK, please refer to the shipping destination drop down on the Shopping Basket for postal rates as these vary from country to country.

How long does delivery take?

Orders are dispatched the following working day after the order is completed & delivery times are as follows:

  • UK: 2 - 3 working days
  • Western Europe: 3 - 4 working days
  • Eastern Europe: 7 - 8 working days
  • North America: 7 - 8 working days
  • Central & South America: 7 - 8 working days
  • Middle East: 7 - 8 working days
  • Africa & Asia: 7 - 8 working days
  • Far East and Australasia: 7 - 8 working days

Can I use Bimuno if I have diarrhoea?

Yes you can use Bimuno if you have diarrhoea. Please feel free to consult our advice team on  +44 800 804 6900 if you would like further information.

Can I use Bimuno IBAID if I have constipation?

Yes you can use Bimuno IBAID if you have constipation. Please feel free to consult our advice team on  +44 800 804 6900 if you would like further information.

What are bifidobacteria?

Bifidobacteria are a group of ‘good’ bacteria which live in the lower intestine. Scientific research has shown that they have a range of positive effects on the human body e.g. they; help regulate the immune system, reduce gas in the gut, promote health of the gut lining, inhibit the growth of pathogens and produce vitamins such as Vitamin K and folic acid.

What are probiotics and prebiotics ?

Probiotics are live bacteria, usually found in yogurts or yogurt drinks, which ‘top up’ your levels of good bacteria in the colon. Prebiotics are a special type of carbohydrate which serves as food for your body’s own good bacteria, helping them to grow and multiply.

Is Bimuno suitable for children?

Bimuno in its powdered form is suitable for children aged 3 years and above – while the pastille formulation is recommended for those over 6 years to reduce the likelihood of choking. Young children should always take Bimuno under the supervision of an adult.

Is Bimuno suitable for people suffering from milk allergy or lactose intolerance?

Although no adverse effects have been reported, milk allergy or lactose intolerance sufferers should exercise a degree of caution when first taking Bimuno*. The Lactose contents for each product is as follows: POWDER – 1 sachet = 1.5g IBAID – 2 pastilles = 0.36g IMMUNAID – 2 pastilles = 0.36g TRAVELAID – 3 pastilles = 0.71g *The Bimuno Pastille range are the preferred option of most people that are concerned about lactose intolerance.

Can I use Bimuno if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

If you are pregnant, breast feeding or planning a pregnancy you should discuss food intake with your doctor and nurse because there might be specific metabolic issues they are aware of as they know your patient history. However, the scientific background shows there is no potential danger for use in pregnancy. Bimuno is a food supplement and not a medicine, and contains a carbohydrate substance, which is not absorbed but goes straight into the large intestine (colon) where it has a positive effect on the bacterial flora.

Will using Bimuno interfere with my medication?

Bimuno is not a medicine and therefore shouldn’t interfere with any medication you may be taking. However, if you take prescribed medication for other conditions, you should speak to your healthcare professional before you take any food supplements.

Can I use Bimuno while on a course of antibiotics?

Many people take Bimuno to increase their friendly bacteria after they have completed a course of antibiotics. If you are considering taking Bimuno during the course please consult your doctor first.

Is Bimuno suitable for people with diabetes?

Although no adverse effects have been reported, diabetes sufferers should consult their healthcare professional before taking Bimuno.

Is Bimuno suitable for people with any pre-existing medical conditions?

We always recommend that you talk first to your healthcare professional regarding specific conditions. They’ll be able to advise you on whether Bimuno is suitable for you.

What is Bimuno?

Bimuno® is a unique B-GOS mixture that combines a prebiotic, immune modulatory, anti-pathogenic and low grade anti-inflammatory effect.

There are four different Bimuno products. These are: Bimuno® POWDER, TRAVELAID, IBAID and IMMUNAID.

Who can take Bimuno?

Customers and patients who could benefit from helping to maintain their immune, digestive and gut travel health and general wellbeing. Those aged 55 years or over or have depleted beneficial bacteria (particularly immunity boosting bifidobacteria) could particularly benefit from Bimuno.

How should my customers or patients take Bimuno?

Bimuno® POWDER: This is the original product available in convenient powder single dose sachets.

For Immune Health Maintenance: Children 12 years and over and adults, 1 sachet (5.5g) daily. For children 3 to 11 years of age ½ a sachet daily (2.75g). Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.

For Digestive Health Maintenance: For children from the age of 3 years and for adults, ½ a sachet (2.75g) daily. Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.

Bimuno powder can be added and stirred into everyday food and drink such as cereal, coffee or tea. For easy dispersion we recommend mixing into a hot beverage.

Bimuno® IBAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles

Adults and children 4 years and over: two pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast; take one pastille immediately after the other. Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.

Bimuno® IMMUNAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles

Adults and children aged 4 years and over: two pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast; take one pastille immediately after the other. Since the benefits build over time, a daily intake is recommended.

Bimuno® TRAVELAID: Available in pleasant soft chewable pastilles

Adults and children 6 years and over: three pastilles a day, ideally after breakfast; take one pastille immediately after the other. It is recommended pastilles are taken daily seven days before travel and each day whilst abroad.

Is Bimuno a medicinal product?

Bimuno®’s legal status is that of a food supplement. It is not available on prescription and is free from any pharmacy supervisory restrictions. Healthcare Professionals can recommend Bimuno to their customers and patients. Note: Bimuno® is not a medicine and is not intended to prevent or treat medical conditions or their symptoms.

Are there any side effects associated with Bimuno?

Bimuno® is a health food ingredient of natural origin. Its safety has been confirmed in scientific studies.

The recommended servings should be observed at all times. Although no adverse effects have been reported, milk allergy sufferers should exercise caution when taking Bimuno for the first time.

Lactose intolerance sufferers should also exercise caution when first taking Bimuno®. Lactose doses of less than 12g per day are likely to be tolerated by most of the population of lactose deficient adults… EFSA Journal (2007) 565,1-6 and EFSA Journal 2010;8(9):1777.

There is also published evidence that up to13.3g lactose can be tolerated without developing symptoms (Suarez et al NEJM 1995 333 1-4). 

Is Bimuno safe to take long term?

Bimuno® can be taken daily on a regular basis. Bimuno is a health food ingredient of natural origin. Its safety has been confirmed in scientific studies. The recommended servings should be observed at all times.

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Where can my customers or patients buy Bimuno from?

In the UK, the complete Bimuno® range is available online at Bimuno.com as well as Boots nationwide.

Bimuno® is also available in Ireland and in Hong Kong and there are plans to launch it in other markets around the world. A number of UK Travel Clinics also recommend and sell Bimuno to their customers to help them maintain their gut health while travelling.

 

The complete Bimuno® range is available online at Bimuno.com. Boots as well as number of travel clinics also recommend and sell Bimuno® to their customers to help them maintain their gut health while abroad.

What is the difference between probiotics and prebiotics?

Probiotics are beneficial live bacteria which when taken in adequate quantities can confer a health benefit. They are commercially available as dietary supplements or foods.

Prebiotics are carbohydrates that act as food for the gut’s probiotic (beneficial) bacteria. Prebiotics are not destroyed or digested in the stomach or small intestine and therefore reach the colon where they exert a positive effect on the resident beneficial probiotic bacteria so as to confer a health benefit.

What are the benefits of prebiotics over probiotics?

As probiotic supplements and foods contain live bacteria, they need to survive the passage through the upper gastrointestinal tract, the acidity of the stomach, secretions of the small intestine and then compete with existing bacteria for colonisation sites in the large intestine (colon). According to research published by the Food Standards Agency in 2005, not all commercially available probiotic products can claim to survive this passage and colonise at an effective rate.

Prebiotics are ‘non-digestible’. This means that they reach the large intestine where they exert a beneficial effect on the resident beneficial probiotic bacteria so as to confer a health benefit. The latest in Key Opinion Leader thinking is that it is preferable to feed our indigenous beneficial microflora (prebiotic effect) as opposed to adding manufactured strains of beneficial bacteria into our eco-system (probiotic effect).

How many different types of Prebiotics are there?

Prebiotics fall into three categories. These are Fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS), Galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS) and Lactulose.

Prebiotics are either 1st generation or 2nd generation. FOS, GOS (except B-GOS) and Lactulose prebiotics are classed as 1st generation. There is only one 2nd generation prebiotic. This is referred to as B-GOS.

1st generation prebiotics are selective at the genus level. In other words they are fermented at the family group level (e.g. by Bifidobacteria or Lactobacillus) and produce a prebiotic effect (increase the number and activity of the beneficial bacteria) or bifidogenic effect (increase the number and strength of the Bifidobacteria).

2nd generation prebiotics are tailor made to offer selectivity at species level (e.g. by Bifidobacterium bifidum) and also offer added functionality i.e. anti-adhesive or anti-pathogenic properties.

How does Bimuno differ from other prebiotics?

Bimuno® is the result of intensive research & development including peer reviewed, clinical trials conducted in collaboration with the University of Reading’s Food Microbial Sciences Unit and other globally recognized research institutes.

Bimuno was first launched in the UK market as the only 2nd generation prebiotic with documented added functionality over other prebiotics and also probiotic foods and supplements. Its unique structure, one that is similar to human milk oligosaccharides (HMOS) established it as the world’s most advanced prebiotic.

Recent clinical trials prove that Bimuno’s unique properties go well beyond its advanced prebiotic action.

Bimuno acts via a triple mode of action in the gut. It has been proven to:

  1. Positively rebalance gut microflora by selectively promoting health-promoting bacteria (bifidobacteria)
  2. Prevent adhesion of bacterial pathogens, thereby helping protect against infections
  3. Help combat chronic inflammation (via its direct action with the immune system) that causes many debilitating, long term illnesses.

Is Bimuno suitable for children?

Bimuno® in its powdered form is suitable for children aged 3 years and above – while the pastille formulation is recommended for those of 4 years (Bimuno® IMMUNAID and IBAID) and 6 years (Bimuno® TRAVELAID) to reduce the likelihood of choking.

Is Bimuno suitable for diabetics?

Bimuno® has been available in the UK since March 2007. To date, there have been no reported cases of adverse reactions involving diabetic patients. The content of Bimuno®’s monosaccharides (glucose and galactose) is clinically modest.

Is Bimuno suitable for people suffering from milk allergy or lactose intolerance?

Although no adverse effects have been reported, milk allergy or lactose intolerance sufferers should exercise caution when first taking Bimuno®. The milk protein content is negligible, under 1% for the powder and under 0.5% for the pastilles. Although no adverse effects have been reported, it can represent a problem for extreme serious allergies.

The lactose content of Bimuno® varies from 0.36g to 1.5g per daily dose, dependent on the Bimuno® product recommended. This is a small amount. There is published evidence that up to 13.3g lactose can be tolerated without developing symptoms (Suarez et al. NEJM 1995 333 1-4).  This compares with the Food Standards Agency’s figure of 12g. It should be noted that lactose doses of less than 12g per day are likely to be tolerated by most of the population of lactose deficient adults. EFSA Journal (2007)565.1-6. and EFSA Journal 1010;8(9):1777.

Will Bimuno interfere with prescribed medication?

Bimuno® is a food supplement of natural origins and there are no reported cases, to date, of interactions with medicines.

Can I recommend Bimuno to be taken while on a course of antibiotics?

Bimuno® is normally recommended to be taken before or during the course of antibiotics.

Is Bimuno suitable for vegetarians?

Bimuno® Powder is suitable for vegetarians. It is not suitable for vegans.

Bimuno® TRAVELAID, IMMUNAID and IBAID are not suitable for vegetarians nor vegans.

Is Bimuno suitable for Kosher and Halal diets?

Bimuno® (pastilles) TRAVELAID, IMMUNAID and IBAID are suitable.

Bimuno® Powder is not suitable for Kosher or Halal diets. 

Is Bimuno gluten free?

Yes, Bimuno® is suitable for people with gluten free diets.

Does Bimuno contain artificial colours or flavourings?

Bimuno® is a health food supplement of natural origin. It is free from artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.

How many calories does Bimuno contain?

At the recommended daily dosage the calorific content of Bimuno® is as follows:
Bimuno® Powder: 15kcal
Bimuno® IBAID: 13kcal
Bimuno® IMMUNAID: 13kcal
Bimuno® TRAVELAID: 26kcal

How much sugar does Bimuno contain?

At the recommended daily dosage the sugar content of Bimuno® is as follows:
Bimuno® Powder: 1.9g
Bimuno® IBAID: 1.6g
Bimuno® IMMUNAID: 1.6g
Bimuno® TRAVELAID: 3.1g

How much fat does Bimuno contain?

At the recommended daily dosage the fat content of Bimuno® is as follows:
Bimuno® Powder: 0.03g
Bimuno® IBAID: 0.0g
Bimuno® IMMUNAID: 0.0g
Bimuno® TRAVELAID: 0.0g

How much lactose does Bimuno contain?

At the recommended daily dosage the lactose content of Bimuno® is as follows:
Bimuno® Powder: 1.5g
Bimuno® IBAID: 0.36g
Bimuno® IMMUNAID: 0.36g
Bimuno® TRAVELAID: 0.71g

It should be noted that lactose doses of less than 10g per day are likely to be tolerated by most of the population of lactose deficient adults. EFSA Journal (2007) 565.1-6.

Can Bimuno Powder be added to food and drinks?

Bimuno® Powder can be added and stirred into everyday food and drink such as cereal, yoghurt, coffee or tea. For the best dispersion, recommend Bimuno® to be taken with the patient’s favourite hot drink. Bimuno® is flavour free and does not alter the taste of food or drink.

Can I recommend Bimuno for gut health maintenance in customers visiting countries with a medium to high risk of Travellers’ Diarrhoea?

Bimuno® is not a medicine and is not indicated for prevention or treatment of medical conditions or their symptoms. In scientific studies, Bimuno® has been shown to help prevent the attachment of salmonella and e.coli pathogenic bacteria in the gut. In another scientific study (Drakoularakou A et al) Bimuno®, compared to placebo, was shown to help maintain the gut health of holidaymakers.

Can I recommend Bimuno® for gut health maintenance?

Bimuno® is not a medicine and is not indicated for prevention or treatment of medical conditions or their symptoms. Bimuno’s prebiotic effect of positively balancing gut microflora has been shown to help maintain gut function.  In another two scientific studies, Bimuno was shown to help maintain gut health (Vulevic et al) and (Costabile et al). 

Can I recommend Bimuno for digestive health maintenance in Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) sufferers?

Bimuno® is not a medicine and is not indicated for prevention or treatment of medical conditions or their symptoms. Bimuno®’s unique action and superior efficacy profile has demonstrated effectiveness in enhancing bifidobacterial levels and helping maintain gut health in IBS sufferers (Silk et al). There are also a number of Bimuno® scientific studies demonstrating a significant increase in the beneficial bacteria, Bifidobacteria, which are normally found in reduced numbers in IBS sufferers.

Bimuno® is not classed as a FODMAP, moreover as a low FODMAP diet has been shown to decrease the levels of bifidobacteria in IBS sufferers (Staudacher al), and given that Bimuno® has been shown to significantly increase bifidobacteria in IBS sufferers (Silk et al), Bimuno® may be a useful addition to a low FODMAP diet.

How common is IBS?

IBS is affects males and females, adults and children alike and is the most common gastro intestinal disorder people experience.

Is IBS a serious illness?

The impact of IBS varies with each person. For some people, IBS causes symptoms that are manageable and/or mild and do not interfere with daily activities. For others, IBS may severely reduce their quality of life or be disabling.

IBS is a long-lasting, or chronic, condition. Symptom episodes are often unpredictable. For many, treatments are minimally effective.

Is IBS a risk factor for other serious diseases?

There are no long-term organic complications associated with IBS. Once an adequate evaluation is made to diagnose IBS, people with the disorder have no greater need of preventive checkups than other people.

Can the menstrual cycle affect IBS symptoms?

Bowel function appears to be influenced by changes in the level of female hormones. Symptoms can become worse at certain times of the cycle, particularly at the time of menstrual periods.

Women both with and without IBS report a higher prevalence of GI symptoms, such as pain and bloating, just prior and at the time of menstrual periods. These symptoms are reported as more intense in women with IBS.

What causes bloating and gas?

Bloating is a common symptom in IBS. It is usually described by people as a feeling of fullness or heaviness in the belly. It may be associated with visible abdominal distension in which the belly appears swollen.

Bloating may be due to any of several factors. This may be due to increased intake of gas-forming foods, slowed transit and evacuation of gas through the bowel, and increased sensitivity to food, gas, and other bowel contents. 

Not everyone with IBS actually produces more gas than those who do not have IBS. People with IBS may also have an increased relaxation of the abdominal wall muscles even without an increase in intestinal gas. This is an unconscious muscle relaxation response in response to the pain of IBS.

However, people with IBS do appear to be more sensitive to the effects of normal amounts of gas. They also seem to have difficulties passing the gas that is present.

Do certain foods affect IBS symptoms?

This varies from person to person. Certain foods stimulate the GI tract in general, and in those with IBS eating too much of these might worsen symptoms. Your doctor or a registered dietitian can help you identify foods that are a problem for you.

Also, at times altered muscle and nerve function in IBS can cause the bowel to over-respond so that even the normal digestive process may bring on symptoms.

Does lactose intolerance cause IBS?

Lactose (milk sugar) intolerance can cause similar symptoms to IBS. Lactose intolerance and IBS can occur at the same time in a person, but they are separate conditions which are treated differently. 

Can bacteria affect IBS symptoms?

There are trillions of bacteria throughout the GI tract. Some help maintain normal functioning of the intestine. Others can cause infection or inflammation.

When the normal balance in the intestine between beneficial and harmful bacteria is changed, it may lead to changes in the function of the GI tract and chronic GI symptoms.

What are the symptoms of IBS?

Find out more on symptoms of IBS here

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