Choosing the best probiotics for SIBO? This post explores whether Microbiome Labs MegaSporeBiotic gut restoration system is the right choice.
It’s happening again—the bloating, burping, and pain in your belly.
You wonder, “why can’t I just eat a meal without feeling terrible? Is that too much to ask?”
So you reach for your go-to supplement or medication, knowing it’s a coin toss whether it will help this time. And you wait. Just like every other time this happens.
I know how frustrating it can be. That’s why I wrote today’s post: because so many of our SIBO SOS® community members have found relief with Microbiome Labs MegaSporeBiotic™ and the Total Gut Restoration System.
I’m a big fan of Kiran Krishnan (the microbiologist and co-founder of Microbiome Labs) because his work with the human microbiome – and how it affects SIBO – gives us all hope for healing.
As Kiran says, “The beauty of it all is it’s an ecological issue in the gut. It’s not a genetic defect. It’s not something that you can’t change. You can change the ecology in your gut. And that’s what’s really exciting and promising.”
This post will cover:
- what spore probiotics are,
- the ins and outs of the Microbiome Labs gut restoration system,
- how some of our favorite products can help with SIBO symptoms,
- whether the combination of probiotic and SIBO are okay, and
- how to figure out whether they’ll work for you.
Are you ready to explore your microbiome and how probiotics for SIBO might help? Let’s get started!
What the Heck Are Spore Probiotics?
Your first reaction on hearing the word spore may very well be: eww! I’m eating what?
But hang in there with me. Spore-based probiotics – also called soil-based probiotics – have some great benefits over the traditional probiotics you see on the grocery store shelves.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) defines “probiotics” as:
- normally occurring in the digestive tract,
- supplemented in higher concentrations than typically occur, and
- able to survive in the digestive tract.
But those widely available probiotics very rarely meet all three criteria.
That’s where the spores come in. They’re able to survive harsh stomach conditions like low acidity and high temperatures due to their endospores.
While our ancestors lived off the land and had diets full of nutrients and beneficial bacteria, modern society doesn’t afford us the same benefits. Instead, we turn to probiotics to help regulate our digestive systems and improve immune function.
How Did Microbiome Labs Get Started?
With a research background, Kiran initially got into probiotics because he realized how many supplement companies didn’t have sufficient clinical data about their products.
Dr. Tom Bayne had a background in supplement manufacturing, but stepped back into a chiropractic and Functional Medicine practice before joining forces with Kiran. Dr. Bayne’s clinical expertise, combined with Kiran’s probiotic research, led them to formulate the first all-spore probiotic.
And after years of research and clinical validation, they did just that with the first all-spore probiotic.
Initially, they shopped around their MegaSpore formula to other companies. But everyone they spoke to passed. The formula for MegaSporeBiotic was so one-of-a-kind that no one would take them seriously (even though they had the research to back them up)!
Eventually, Kiran and Dr. Tom decided to focus on the research and launch their own product line. It took grit and guts – and almost going out of business – but their hard work finally started to stick.
And we are SO grateful they stuck with it, because without them spore probiotics probably wouldn’t be available today.
Microbiome Labs Total Gut Restoration System
A healthy gut consists of a balanced population of microbes, robust physical structures, and controlled immune function. And if something is off in our systems, we want to target all three of those areas. Therapies that only address one of these aspects don’t help re-establish a healthy gastrointestinal tract.
But he also tells us, “The beauty of the microbiome is it’s an ever-changing ecosystem that is highly influenced by things that enter the body, perceptions of the host, and so on. So, we can change our microbiome quite dramatically within a short period.”
He recommends four areas of focus for anyone looking to boost diversity in their microbiome:
- Intermittent fasting,
- Time in wild areas like the beach or woods,
- Stress management and mindfulness, and
Using the right type of probiotic will help establish balance within your microbiome. That’s where the Total Gut Restoration system comes in.**
The Microbiome Labs team works with endospores from the Bacillus genus because they can dramatically shift your microbiome’s diversity and functionality in a relatively short time.
The Microbiome Labs Total Gut Restoration system helps with what they call the 3 Rs:
Let’s look at each of the products and how they work.
MegaSporeBiotic™ to Recondition
MegaSporeBiotic™ is a broad-spectrum probiotic with a blend of 5 Bacillus spores.
The all-spore formula reconditions the gut by improving microbial diversity, supporting a healthy gut barrier, and boosting immune function.
The Bacillus spores have a two-phase life cycle that allows them to survive the stomach and arrive in the gastrointestinal tract intact, where they can begin to colonize the gut.
There are five strains of bacteria in the MegaSpore probiotics:
- Bacillus Licheniformis
- Bacillus Indicus HU36™
- Bacillus Subtilis HU58™
- Bacillus Clausii
- Bacillus Coagulans
But what makes these spore probiotics better than other probiotics on the market?
For those of us with SIBO, MegaSporeBiotic™ was clinically proven in a 2017 study to reduce symptoms indicative of “leaky gut syndrome.”
A 2016 study found that Bacillus Subtilis is one of the most important microorganisms for treating intestinal disorders in humans. It also promotes gut-associated lymphoid tissue development, which is a crucial component of a properly functioning immune system.
And in a 2020 study, MegaSporeBiotic™ was shown to protect the liver from damage. This is especially significant because of the connection between liver health and SIBO.
Please note: MegaSporeBiotic™ is most effective when taken with the other two products in the Total Gut Restoration system.
MegaPre™ to Reinforce
MegaPre™ is a Precision Prebiotic™ that feeds beneficial gut bacteria and increases microbial diversity.
Ingredients include clinically tested, non-digestible oligosaccharides derived from non-GMO green and gold kiwi fruit, non-GMO corn cob, and rBST-free cow’s milk.
Even though the oligosaccharide is from dairy, there are no dairy proteins or fat in it because it’s made from purified extracts.
A 2014 double-blind study showed that the fructooligosaccharides (the ones from kiwi) showed significantly higher Bifidobacterium species counts than the placebo group.
That’s important because studies suggest that Bifidobacterium bifidum shows promise in treating things like IBS, constipation, ulcerative colitis, and certain kinds of diarrhea.
Kiran assured us in a recent webinar that SIBO subjects have tolerated MegaPre™ fairly well.
He knows many people get scared about prebiotics in SIBO, but because of the way MegaPre™ is made, the formulation makes it further into the large bowel. This means specific microbes (like akkermansia) can use their specialized enzymes to fully break down the oligosaccharides.
In simple terms, this means MegaPre™ is less likely to be fermented in the small intestine, and therefore won’t cause a flare in SIBO symptoms.
However, if you do notice an increase in bloating or gas symptoms, focus on repairing your intestinal mucosal barrier with MegaMucosa™ and then try MegaPre™ again.
MegaMucosa™ to Rebuild
MegaMucosa™ was formulated with key amino acids to rebuild and support a healthy intestinal mucosal barrier.
Did you know the mucosal system contains 150 times more surface area than your skin? That means it’s essential to healthy immune function!
According to Microbiome Labs, MegaMucosa™ contains “dairy-free immunoglobulins clinically shown to support a healthy immune system in the mucosa and a state-of-the-art flavobiotic shown to support microbial diversity and short-chain fatty acid production.”
The four amino acids are L-proline, L-serine, L-cysteine, and L-threonine.
And the citrus polyphenols come from MicrobiomeX®, a citrus extract that supports digestive health. A 12-week double-blind, placebo-controlled study showed a significant shift in short-chain fatty acid composition, suggesting that the polyphenols may help decrease pathogen load in the gut.
Our Other Favorite Microbiome Labs Products
But the Total Gut Restoration system isn’t the only product line made by Microbiome Labs. Here are some of the other products our SIBO community loves.
- Mega IgG2000 for immune function, healthy digestion, and detox support.
- HU58™ (a single-strain probiotic) for a healthy balance of intestinal microflora and proper nutrient absorption.
- MegaMycoBalance for yeast and fungal balance.
- RestorFlora (a spore and yeast probiotic) for comprehensive digestive flora support.
But I’m sure you still have one big lingering question:
Question: Should I Use Probiotics for SIBO?
The biggest question I get around SIBO and probiotics is, “will it work for me?”
The answer is: it depends! Like most of your journey with SIBO, you can experiment and see what works best for you. We highly recommend working with your doctor to determine which supplements to try.
Kiran tells us that about two-thirds of the SIBO patients they worked with had positive results. Others were very sensitive to the Microbiome Labs products because they still had organisms where they didn’t belong.
His biggest recommendation is to go slow and do everything you can to work with the underlying dysfunctions that lead to SIBO.
What do I mean by go slow? Start with just a sprinkle at first instead of the recommended ½ or 1 capsule. See what happens if you start with a small dose every other day instead of daily. Microbiome Labs also includes some great dosing instructions on their site.
Kiran recommends that SIBO subjects start right away with MegaSporeBiotic™. Then when it’s time to start rebuilding the mucosa, add in MegaMucosa™.
And most of all, continue to be patient! While some people may feel great right away, your experience may be different. You might feel worse for a while because of die-off symptoms. Or you may fall somewhere in the middle.
Since spore probiotics can’t colonize in the small intestine (despite the myths you may have heard about them “taking over” the microbiome), most people have good luck with using the Total Gut Restoration System on an ongoing basis, for maintenance of the microbiome.
(I used initials to honor our community’s privacy — but I would also invite you to become a member if you’re not already!)
“I’m about to finish the Microbiome Labs gut rebuilding program. While my IBS is still with me, I am seeing progress with less bloating and increased ability to include some of my formerly forbidden fodmap foods in small amounts.” — MK
One subject that comes up regularly here is probiotics and SIBO. MegaSpore Biotics from Microbiome Labs have been particularly beneficial to my gut clients. I’ve been using it myself for over 4 years — best results ever – in fact, before using MegaSpore I seriously wondered if probiotics really did anything.” — CB
“I was very successful with it, completed the 3-month protocol, and maintaining with Megasporebiotic and MegaIgG2000. My gut hasn’t felt this good in decades!” JS
“Microbiome Labs Protocol update… SUCCESS! Week 8 I suddenly felt amazing! I have my life back, feeling fantastic!” — GC
“I, too, am doing fantastic on this protocol and feel I have been given my life back. I tried many other SIBO protocols, and nothing had the lasting results this has. I am on week 11 and am eating more and more things without consequences of a relapse, or if I have one, it is short-lived… The arthritis in my finger joints has dramatically improved, and I feel so much calmer and happier than I have in literally decades, but especially since when I developed SIBO 7 years ago!” — CC
“I just started taking it this week because of an increasing amount of inflammation in my gut and was really impressed at how well I felt. Love this stuff and ordered two more bottles of it. I haven’t felt this good in years while doing an antiviral protocol. I am just thrilled… I was beginning to think I would never heal. I highly recommend it.” — LJ
Now it’s time to figure out what works for you.
SIBO and Probiotics: Will They Work for You?
The truth is, there is no perfect solution in some book somewhere. It’s what will work for you.
When you can take the ideas in articles like these and turn that learning into thinking, that’s where the magic happens.
I hope that – wherever you are right now – you can take a nice long exhale. Remember, there’s no perfect supplement or diet plan. And everyone makes mistakes along their healing journey.
But there’s a lot of science out there to help us make our way to better health.
And to help you on your journey to figure out the best probiotic for SIBO (and for you), Kiran has offered a generous discount code exclusive to our community!
Normally a practitioner is required to order directly from Microbiome Labs, but Kiran has graciously opened ordering to our community.
If this is your first order, start with this link to register as a patient, enter SIBOSOS in the patient direct code box, CLICK HERE: Microbiome Labs (this is the first step – you can’t order directly from Microbiome Labs unless you do this).
Then select the products and enter “DIGESTIONSOS” at checkout for 15% off your FIRST order.
** These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.