Are you getting the right prebiotics? Even more importantly, are you getting them from the right sources? Our research so far shows that a majority of the prebiotic supplements available out there do not meet the cut. And that’s why when we heard about PrebioThrive we naturally wanted to review it to confirm whether there’s more to it than just hype.
Manufacturer: Gundry MD
Country: USA (Beverly Hills,Ca)
Price: See on Amazon
Verdict: Quite popular out there although some of its ingredients aren’t as impressive.
PrebioThrive Review: Background Overview
This is a product by Gundry MD, a company associated with the controversial Dr. Steven Gundry. What we’d like you to note is that the good doctor is a cardiac surgeon so his area of specialization isn’t nutrition.
That said, by listening to his YouTube videos and podcasts, we could tell that he’s a nutritionally-informed physician.
However, he has made claims that have cast him in bad light in the recent past. For instance, his advocacy on “going lectin-free” has been dubbed by numerous dieticians and scientists as pseudoscience (1,2).
On a more positive note, his company is behind Vital Reds a relatively popular stim-free beverage.
How It Works
Back to our main focus, PrebioThrive, we’d like to say that the product seems okay although it has a couple of downsides which most shill reviews fail to mention.
As a prebiotic compound, this product brings together a combination of hard-to-digest fibers which are known to make their way to the gut undestroyed.
Once these natural fibers make it to the gut, they feed the good bacteria thereby stimulating the production of good bacteria.
This can be helpful especially if your diet comprises canned food or food items that are loaded with preservatives.
Is This The Right Supplement for Me?
If you’re a healthy adult who regularly takes fruits and veggies, chances are that adding this prebiotic to your system will only overload your microbiome.
However, if you’ve been experiencing rough stools and uncontrollable cravings this supplement might be of help.
PrebioThrive may provide you with those benefits but you’d have to take it on a trial-and-error basis. It has a 50/50 chance of success and we think that much better PrebioThrive alternatives exist. Read on to find out more.
That said, a significant proportion of its ingredients list is made up of cheap and secondary ingredients.
And to make the matters worse, its manufacturer doesn’t even bother to state how much of each ingredient is found per serving of the powder.
He, instead, chose to hide the quantities and proportions of the crucial ingredients in a proprietary blend.
So, we really can’t tell whether there’s too much or too little of anything. To this end, that’s our biggest concern about this product.
Here’s a list of PrebioThrive ingredients:
- Organic Acacia Gum
- Agave Inulin (Organic)
- Organic Flaxseed
- Organic Guar Gum
Organic Acacia Gum
Also known as Gum Arabica, this is a natural gum that has prebiotic-like effects. It’s not a prebiotic in the strictest sense of the definition but it contains secondary effects that might be beneficial in the stimulation of Bifidobacterium good bacteria (7).
Just like Chicory Inulin, Agave Inulin is a fructan meaning it’s capable of going right through the small intestines without being broken down. In our view, this is a high-quality but generic ingredient found in this supplement (further processing would be necessary to boost its bioavailability).
Generic inulin’s dosage according to WebMD is 10 to 40 grams for constipation and obesity.
Unfortunately, we could not independently verify how much of Agave Inulin is available in PrebioThrive.
The danger of taking too much Inulin is that it can overload the microbiome leading to bloating and even diarrhea.
A quick look at most reviews posted about PrebioThrive on Amazon proves that the majority of the complaints raised against it are related to those two issues (see screenshots below). So, we speculate that there might be more Inulin than necessary in this product.
Some Reviews (Screenshots)
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The fiber in flaxseeds may promote healthy gut and regular bowel movement. That’s in addition to making you fill fuller than you actually are – something which can help in managing caloric intake and controlling cravings.
That said, we think that flaxseeds can easily be bought in local groceries. As a cheap and readily available ingredient, it doesn’t make sense to charge a premium for it in any branded product whatsoever.
To make matters even worse, the manufacturer doesn’t even state how much of this ingredient is found in the powder. If the powder contains too much flaxseed, then it probably is a big rip-off at its current price.
Simply known as GOS, Galacto-oligosaccharides are a low-glycemic member of the oligosaccharides family. A 2015 peer-reviewed study appearing on PubMed described it as an “inexpensive alternative often added to infant formulas…and one of the most extensively evaluated prebiotics” (8).
This rich source of fiber is commonly associated with enhanced bowel movement and frequency if taken in its partially hydrolyzed form (9).
However, the FDA has since banned the use of Guar Gum in weight loss products (10). That’s because some supplement manufacturers used it in larger than recommended dosages in the early 90s leading to widespread health concerns.
Worth noting is that once in the body, the gum typically swells up to 20 times its size. While this may promote fullness and loss of weight, its overuse may lead to obstructions within the digestive system.
Unfortunately, Gundry MD doesn’t indicate how much of this particular ingredient is found within their product. Therefore, we couldn’t verify if its quantities are safe to consume in the long-term or not.
That said, we’re yet to come across any complaints raised about it that would point to the possibility of it having more than enough guar gum.
What We Think About These Ingredients
We normally prefer to stand behind products whose ingredients can easily be verified and confirmed to be safe. To this end, we feel that Gundry MD lets thousands of its loyal clients down by not being transparent with the contents of this product.
Don’t get us wrong, though. We are not bashing this product. All we are saying is that the manufacturer could do a better job of disclosing the full list of ingredients and ratios used.
Also, we think that there are too many secondary ingredients found in this product. While these aren’t necessarily as bad as cheap fillers, they might overload your system. And as we have seen, guar gum still appears on the FDA list of banned substances although generally regarded as safe when taken in small portions.
What’s the Price of PrebioThrive?
90 bucks per 30 scoops of this product translate into $3 per serving. Given its caliber of ingredients and the lack of a detailed breakdown of its composition, we’re of the opinion that this supplement is grossly overpriced.
Who knows? You might be spending all that cash for a powder that’s 95% made up of ground acacia gum and flax seeds!
Potential Side Effects
The product is likely safe because, well, it’s made by a medical doctor with a name to keep. But given that it contains controversial ingredients, it might easily lead to side effects if taken incorrectly or in larger-than-recommended dosages.
Here is a list of side effects commonly associated with PrebioThrive:
- Makes some people gassy
- May worsen your candida
- Some users complained of diarrhea
- Potential risk of esophageal or intestinal blockage
We’d, highly recommend talking to an independent medical doctor prior to taking this supplement if in doubt.
Also, if you’re already using the product and face any adverse reactions, we’d suggest discontinuing its use and telling your doctor about it.
NB: This site is not run/operated by doctors and this should not be mistaken for medical advice.
Final Thoughts – Is PrebioThrive Worth It?
Having considered all those facts, we’d be reluctant to recommend this supplement to our readers. We feel that it lacks the kind of transparency you’d expect from a top-tier product.
Also, in terms of value, our observation is that it’s grossly overpriced.
That said, roughly 60% of those who have reviewed it on Amazon give it 4-stars and above. So it might not be that bad after all.
But if you’re looking for good value for your money, you might want to look elsewhere.