OptiBac Probiotics for ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease


What are Optibac Probiotics and what's in them?

OptiBac Probiotics are freeze-dried probiotic supplement capsules and sachets. There are 11 different types of OptiBac Probiotics supplements which each have different strains of live cultures in them to target different things. They come in capsules and sachets (which can be taken directly or mixed with food/water). They are all gluten and dairy free.

OptiBac Probiotics suggests two of their supplements for people with IBD (which can be taken together) - For every day EXTRA Strength and Saccharomyces boulardii. If you have constipation then Bifidobacteria & fibre is recommended.

For every day EXTRA Strength capsules contains bacteria strains:

  • Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM®
  • Lactobacillus paracasei Lpc-37
  • Bifidobacterium lactis Bi-07
  • Bifidobacterium lactis Bl-04
  • Bifidobacterium bifidum Bb-02

Its other ingredients include:

  • Micro-crystalline cellulose (filler)
  • Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (capsule)
  • Vegetable magnesium stearate (anti-caking agent)
  • Silicon dioxide (anti-caking agent)

OptiBac says 20 billion micro-organisms are guaranteed in each capsule

Saccharomyces boulardii capsules contains bacteria strains:

  • Saccharomyces boulardii (250mg)

Its other ingredients include:

  • Hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (capsule)
  • Potato starch (filler)
  • Magnesium stearate (lubricant)
  • Silicon dioxide (an anti-adherent)

OptiBac says 5 billion live cultures are guaranteed in each capsule

Bifidobacteria & fibre sachets contains bacteria strains:

  • Bifidobacterium lactis BB-12

Its other ingredients include:

  • Fructooligosaccharides
  • Fructose
  • Silicon dioxide (anti-caking agent)

OptiBac says 5 billion micro-organisms + 4g FOS fibres are guaranteed in each sachet.

How do you take OptiBac Probiotics?

OptiBac Probiotics supplements come in either capsules or sachets (depending on the product) and should be taken with or before breakfast.

How do OptiBac Probiotics products work?

OptiBac Probiotics says their products:

  • Survive through stomach acidity (tests have been carried out on the strains OptiBac Probiotics contains, not on encapsulated final product)
  • Have a guaranteed number of live probiotics until expiry (regular tests are carried out to ensure this)

When OptiBac Probiotics products are consumed the digestive system reactivates the live bacteria by adding moisture and warmth to 'wake’ them up. Once re-activated the bacteria then  do their job as they move through the digestive tract.

OptiBac Probiotics has 11 different products which they have specifically created to target different needs. The bacteria strains in each product have been selected to assist these health conditions based on available research. The viability and efficacy of the probiotic strains are also considered.

Their 11 products include:

  • For every day
  • For every day Extra strength
  • For your cholesterol
  • For those on antibiotics
  • Bifidobacteria & fibre (for constipation)
  • For travelling abroad
  • For daily immunity
  • One week flat (for bloating)
  • For women (for women’s intimate health)
  • For babies & children
  • Saccharomyces boulardii 

What is the research into OptiBac Probiotics and inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease?

There is no research specifically into OptiBac Probiotics products and IBD.

There is research into some of the strains OptiBac Probiotics include in their products and IBD, or IBD-related symptoms.

These include:

Saccharomyces boulardii - helps in the prevention of Crohn’s disease flare ups1 and in gaining remission for ulcerative colitis2. For Crohn’s disease results suggested that Saccharomyces boulardii may represent a useful tool in the maintenance treatment of Crohn’s disease. For ulcerative colitis the study’s preliminary results suggest that S. boulardii can be effective in the treatment of ulcerative colitis.

Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis, BB-12 for constipation3. The results of the study strongly support a clinically relevant benefit of the probiotic strain Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis, BB-12®, on defecation frequency in healthy subjects with low defecation frequency and abdominal discomfort.

What is the research into OptiBac Probiotics and other bowel conditions?

There is no research specifically into OptiBac Probiotics products and other bowel conditions.

There is research into strains OptiBac Probiotics uses in its products and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM and IBS4 - following this study patients noticed an improvement in bloating (73%), reduction in passage of excess gas (54%), decreased abdominal pain/cramps (62%), decrease in diarrhoea (62%), improvement of constipation (54%), decrease in alternating diarrhoea and constipation (58%) and decrease in sensation of incomplete evacuation (27%).

Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM is included in OptiBac Probiotics’ Everyday extra strength product.

Who makes OptiBac Probiotics?

OptiBac Probiotics are sold by Wren Laboratories Ltd. The product is made for them by their chosen 3rd parties. Wren Laboratories Ltd are a family run business which started in 2004 by Feroze Janmohamed who was a community pharmacist for 35 years. The company is now run by his son Jalal.

How are OptiBac Probiotics made?

OptiBac Probiotics products are manufactured by third parties across the world. Different bacteria strains are cultured in different places - including United States, Canada and France.

Each bacteria strain is classified and identified to ensure the strain claimed on the packet is the same as the strain in the product. The species in the products are all given certificates of qualified presumption of safety (QPS) which is a requirement of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). OptiBac says it also has full traceability of raw materials to the final product.

How does OptiBac Probiotics guarantee the number of bacteria in its products?

Bacterial cell counts are taken at each stage of manufacture, including a final count of the finished product. Studies have also been done which measure the number of bacteria in the products at various stages of its two-year shelf life. Each product at least matched the number of claimed bacteria on the packet and the actual number of bacteria in the product.

How long do you need to take OptiBac Probiotics for?

The amount of time and dosage depends on which of the OptiBac Probiotics products you take. Every Day Extra Strength, Saccharomyces boulardii and Bifidobacteria & fibre are all recommended for on-going use (ie daily).

How do you store OptiBac Probiotics products?

OptiBac Probiotics products are recommended to be kept in a cool, dry place until the expiry date on the packet. They do not need to be kept in the fridge. OptiBac Probiotics say this reduces the chance of the bacteria degrading before being ingested.

The products have a two-year shelf life.

Interview with Jalal Janmohamed from OptiBac

How is OptiBac Probiotics governed?

In the UK most probiotics are governed under the same laws as foods, not medicines, and governing bodies include the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA),  the Food Safety Authority (FSA) and the Advisory Committee on Borderline Substances.

These bodies issue guidelines around what probiotic companies can say in relation to their product and health claims they can make. Even if a probiotic has medical evidence to support its use for a certain condition they cannot publicise this unless they go through strict medical testing - a very expensive and lengthy process. 

This is why you will often find that probiotic companies do not mention specific health conditions on their website and marketing material. Guidelines have also been issued to say that the term probiotic may no longer be used in the promotion of supplements by the companies. The Advertising Standards Authority also has oversight regarding claims made and any complaints arising. In general, the industry is self-regulated so some companies choose to 'bend’ the rules around making health claims in relation to their product.

How much do OptiBac Probiotics cost?

The cost depends on which product you take:

For Every Day Extra Strength*: 30 capsules cost £23.99. 90 capsules cost around £59.99. It is recommended you take one or two capsules daily - that’s 66p (one capsule) or £1.33 (two capsules) per day.

For every day MAX*: 30 capsules cost £36.99. It is recommended you take one or two capsules daily - that's £1.23 (one capsule) or £2.45 (two capsules) per day.

Saccharomyces boulardii*: 80 capsules cost £25.99. It is recommended you take one to four capsules a day - that’s between 32p (one capsule) and £1.30 (four capsules) per day.

Bifidobacteria & fibre*: 30 sachets cost around £19.99. It is recommended you take one sachet daily, or up to four if required - that’s 66p (one sachet) and £2.66 (four sachets). A smaller pack of 10 sachets costs £7.99.

Where can I buy them?

You can buy them directly from OptiBac's website*: www.optibacprobiotics.co.uk

Where can I get more information?

OptiBac Probiotics *

*Please note these are affiliate links which means if you buy from the company we may receive a commission. You will pay the same price as you normally would and any money earned by us will be used to support IBDrelief's work.


  1. Guslandi, M. et al. (2000) Saccharomyces boulardii in Maintenance Treatment of Crohn's Disease. Digestive Diseases & Sciences. Vol 45, 7, 1462 - 1464

  2. Guslandi M, Giollo P, Testoni PA. A pilot trial of Saccharomyces boulardii in ulcerative colitis. Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2003 Jun;15(6):697-8. PMID:12840682

  3. Dorte Eskesen, Lillian Jespersen, Birgit Michelsen, Peter J. Whorwell, Stefan Müller-Lissner, and Cathrine M. Morberg. Effect of the probiotic strain Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis, BB-12®, on defecation frequency in healthy subjects with low defecation frequency and abdominal discomfort: a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group trial. Br J Nutr. 2015 Nov 28; 114(10): 16381646. PMCID: PMC4657032

  4. Steven M Faber. Treatment of abnormal gut flora improves symptoms in patients with irritable bowel syndrome. The American Journal of Gastroenterology 95, 2533 (September 2000)

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