If you are researching which probiotic supplement to use you will have no doubt been faced with the question of Shelf stable vs. refrigerated. This article will put the record straight.
Is it Better to Buy Shelf-Stable or Refrigerated Probiotics
There’s a popular myth that shelf-stable probiotics are not as good as refrigerated probiotics. In fact, many people will tell you all the probiotic bacteria in shelf-stable products are likely to be dead.
What nonsense! The myth is untrue. The information outdated.
Although the bacteria may be dead in certain poor-quality shelf-stable products, all the best manufacturers are capable of producing probiotics that can retain their potency.
Often for two years or longer at room temperature (70F°/21C°).
Why People Doubt the Value of Shelf-Stable Probiotics
There are a couple of reasons people believe non-refrigerated probiotics are not as good as the probiotics you store in a refrigerator.
The first reason may not come as a surprise. A lot of people have purchased non-refrigerated probiotics only to find the product they bought was not shelf-stable at all and all the bacteria were dead.
This kind of disappointment happens when people purchase poor-quality probiotics from companies that lack the expertise that’s necessary to produce viable shelf-stable products. Reputable manufacturers build their reputation and brand by providing their customers with quality products that don’t let them down.
The other reason so many people believe is shelf-stable probiotics are not as good as refrigerated ones is a failure to keep up with the times.
At the beginning of the century, when the probiotic industry was still in its infancy, it was difficult to sustain Bifidobacterium and Lactobacilli bacteria strains in capsules and supplements. Time moves on. This is no longer the case.
Advances in manufacturing techniques have made it possible to produce probiotics that remain viable for a considerable length of time. Furthermore, technology continues to advance. It’s possible manufacturers may be able to further extend the life of shelf-stable probiotics. Only time will tell.
Shelf-Stable or Refrigerated Probiotics: Which Type is Best?
Although shelf-stable probiotics have become very advanced, they are not superior to probiotics that require refrigeration. Nor are they inferior. They merely provide two different routes you can take to achieve the same aim.
Unfortunately, some of the companies that produce probiotics that require refrigeration dispatch them via non-refrigerated shipping. In hot climates, by the time the product arrives, some or all of the probiotic bacteria may be dead.
In a scenario like this, opening the package and placing the probiotics in the refrigerator is a little like closing the stable door after the horse has bolted.
Some refrigerated probiotic supplements as very good. Don’t doubt it. As with shelf-stable probiotics, the trick is to pick a good quality product from a reputable supplier.
However, shelf-stable probiotics do have some advantages over refrigerated ones.
The fact that you don’t need to worry about shipping temperatures is one of them. The products that arrive at your door should have the same potency they did when they were dispatched. Again, this is presuming you chose a reputable supplier.
Shelf-stable probiotics are also more convenient to use. Because there is no need for refrigeration, you can pop them in your bag and take them along wherever you go.
They will retain their potency whether you take them to work with you or on a two-week Caribbean vacation. That’s an important consideration you may want to bear in mind.