Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Prebiotics

1. What is in Prebiotin?

Prebiotin contains two prebiotic fibers, oligofructose and inulin. They are mixed together in a carefully designed formula to provide the best health benefits. Together they are called oligofructose enriched inulin or Prebiotin.

2. What is a PROBIOTIC?

PROBIOTIC is a live bacteria which is present in yogurt, other dairy products and pills. It is hoped that these bacteria take up residence in the colon and provide health benefits. Remember, probiotics are not prebiotics. Learn more about the differences between prebiotics and probiotics

3. What is a PREBIOTIC?

A PREBIOTIC is a special type of plant fiber that selectively nourishes the good bacteria in the gut which, in turn, produces many health benefits.

4. Why is Prebiotin better than plain inulin?

Inulin by itself is a longer, more complex fiber that acts mostly in the left side of the colon. Prebiotin  combines inulin and oligofructose into a carefully designed formula. Together they nourish the good bacteria throughout the colon. That is why Prebiotin is called full spectrum. It acts throughout the colon.

5. How does Prebiotin compare with psyllium (Metamucil)?

Psyllium is a very old and effective stool bulking agent, having been grown and used in India for over 1,000 years. It does lower cholesterol when 7 gms per day are taken. The usual dose of psyllium in most preparations is ½ this dose at 3.5 gms. Our Prebiotin prebiotic fiber preparation compares to psyllium in the following ways:

Metamucil™(psyllium) Prebiotin™ (oligofructose enriched inulin)
Improves bowel regularity X X
Lowers cholesterol X
Increases calcium absorption X
Increases bone density X
Increases good colon bacteria X
Decreases bad colon bacteria X
Produces vitamin B12 & K X
Increases colon immune factors X
Controls weight and appetite X
Reduces triglyceride level X

6. What is the proper serving size of Prebiotin?

Since Prebiotin is pure prebiotic soluble fiber, you do not need a large amount. For some it is best to start with ½ teaspoon daily of Prebiotin prebiotic fiber. Gradually increase to 1 full teaspoon per day and, if tolerated, up to 2 teaspoons per day in divided doses or total of 8 gms per day. Some people do very well on twice this dose. Every person has his or her own personal makeup of bacteria in the colon. Because of this, each person will respond in his or her own way.

7. How should I take Prebiotin Prebiotic Fiber?

Prebiotin Prebiotic Fiber and Prebiotin Bone Health dissolve readily in any hot or cold liquid with vigorous stirring. It can also be added to any foods such as cereal, soups, sauces, salads and vegetables. It has a very slight natural sweetness, which can complement foods.

8. Should Prebiotin be taken every day?

Yes. In fact, a steady dose of a prebiotic will enhance and maintain a healthy population of good bacteria in the gut providing many health benefits. Keep in mind that Prebiotin is a soluble fiber, and all soluble fibers as are present in fruits, oat products and beans may produce colon gas when large amounts are ingested. It is really the total amount of soluble fiber you eat each day that is important in this regard. People need to test this for themselves.

9. Can Prebiotin be taken with probiotics?

Yes. In fact, Prebiotin Prebiotic Fiber has exactly the right nutrients that most probiotic bacteria require to grow vigorously.  

10. What is the nutrient value of Prebiotin?

Prebiotin is 100% natural, plant-derived soluble fiber derived exclusively form chicory root vegetables. Prebiotin Prebiotic Fiber contains 4 gm of soluble fiber and 5 calories per serving. Full nutritional information, along with a complete ingredients list, is on each of our product’s back label. You can see the label online on our Product pages.

11. Are prebiotics helpful when taking antibiotics?

No. Antibiotics kill many of the good bacteria in the colon, even while they are clearing up an infection, so prebiotics are not helpful while taking antibiotics. However, after the course of antibiotics is concluded, Prebiotin is helpful in re-establishing the best and most vigorous colon bacteria.

12. Does Prebiotin contain sugar?

No. The word, oligofructose, suggests that it is a sugar such as fructose. However, it is a sugar only in a chemical sense. It has no calories and is not absorbed by the small intestine. So, neither inulin nor oligofructose is a sugar.

13. What is the source of Prebiotin?

Both oligofructose and inulin in Prebiotin come from the chicory root, grown in Belgium and France.

14. What symptoms can Prebiotin cause?

Most soluble fiber in food feeds certain bacteria in the gut, which in turn can produce gas and/or fullness if too much is taken. It is best to start Prebiotin at a low amount such as 1/2 tsp a day. Then increase it gradually over several weeks. No other symptoms are known to occur. If this gradual increase is followed, the body becomes tolerant.

15. Will Prebiotin really get rid of malodorous flatus?

Yes. Prebiotin makes the colon contents slightly acid, which is a very good thing. The bacteria that make the smelly sulfide gases in flatus do not grow in an acid environment. So, while the amount of flatus may not change, the smelly odor frequently improves or stops altogether.

16. Can I take Prebiotin with my medications?

Prebiotin has no known interactions with medications. However, you should always check with your doctor first. We are always happy to speak with any health care provider who may have a question. They are welcomed to call us at 717-731-1805.

17. Can I feel Prebiotin working in my body?

Yes. There are some people who will get a surprisingly rapid improvement in their sense of well-being with the decreased appetite and improved bowel pattern. They just say they feel different and markedly better. No. Just like vitamins, minerals and nutrients, prebiotics mostly work quietly. They feed the good bacteria in the colon. And just as quietly, these beneficial bacteria multiply and produce a large number of health benefits. Because Prebiotin addresses the underlying causes of complaints rather than just dulling the symptoms, its impact may take time and is often quietly unnoticed.

18. What is Prebiotin’s product return policy?

You may return new, unopened items sold and fulfilled with Prebiotin, or opened items if you are unsatisfied with the product within 30 days of delivery for a full refund or product replacement / substitution. Items should be returned in their original product packaging. We’ll also pay the return shipping costs if the return is a result of our error. Please contact our customer care department at or toll free at 855-466-3488 for additional instructions.

19. Can I give Prebiotin to my children?

Prebiotin is derived from chicory root. It is a powdered vegetable root which is part of many children’s diet around the world. These two prebiotics within chicory root, oligofructose and inulin, are eaten by many children at an early age. Infants also get prebiotics in breast milk. Children get them in bananas and bread of almost any type. So, adding a supplement such as Prebiotin simply puts more of the prebiotic into the body, which then fertilizes the good bacteria. It is always best to discuss this with your physician. The dosage for children should be reduced according to their age and weight, until its effect on gas or fullness is determined.

20. Can a prebiotic and psyllium (Metamucil™) be taken together?

Yes. There are no known interactions between these two fibers. However, these are both soluble fibers and they both can feed the gas forming bacteria in the gut. So, a reduction in the initial dose of each is recommended, such as psyllium (Metamucil™) 2 grams and oligofructose enriched inulin 2 grams. Additionally, it is best to take the prebiotics with food so as to allow it to trickle slowly into the colon.

21. Can people of all ages take Oligofructose-Enriched Inulin?

Yes and no. Mother’s milk has a natural prebiotic in it, so a newborn will immediately get the right prebiotics. So, infants and small children should not take prebiotics except with a physician’s recommendation. But the mother should ! Here is an interesting additional fact. Not only does mother’s breast milk have natural prebiotics in it, but beneficial bacteria are present as well. So, mother’s milk provides the newborn infant with natural prebiotics and probiotics that give the baby exactly what it needs to start the right bacterial growth in its colon. How wonderful this is!

22. How do I test for the right dose?

Start with a relatively small dose, two grams or less a day. Use this for about a week. If there is no unusual abdominal bloating, cramping or excess flatus, increase the dose to three grams, then four or more. At a certain level, many people will notice that their flatus no longer smells. This is because acidity has increased in the colon and the bacteria that make the smelly sulfide gases no longer grow. This is the “right dose”.

23. If I am healthy, are there any benefits to probiotics and/or prebiotics?

Yes. The standard Western diet has become markedly deficient in prebiotics fibers. Our ancestors, who relied on grains, berries and, especially, root vegetables for nutrition, ingested large quantities of these beneficial prebiotics. Unfortunately, modern food production, the industrialization of farming, the cheap availability of animal meats and advertising have all but eliminated these inulin and oligo-fructose fibers from our diet. A regular dose of prebiotic fibers returns the gut to a more healthy natural state. For a list of the benefits of prebiotics, click here.

24. Will prebiotics or any fiber interfere with medications I am taking?

Probably not. However, your physician or pharmacist will advise you on whether medications should be taken with food or on an empty stomach, or whether it doesn’t make any difference.

25. Are there any serious side effects to prebiotics?

No. In the same way that most people who eat too large a helping of beans (lots of soluble fiber but not prebiotic ones) may have excessive flatus, the same thing can occur with an extra large amount of a prebiotic. In either case, there is no serious or permanent problem. Simply reduce the dose.

26. Crohn’s Disease and Prebiotics?

It is now well-established that Crohn’s disease begins when the bowel wall weakens and certain colon bacteria invade it, causing inflammation  In addition, analysis of the gut bacteria in Crohn’s patients shows that it is less healthy than what is normally present. Prebiotics such as Prebiotin are known to strengthen the gut wall by stimulating the growth of good bacteria. It is suspected they can be helpful in the dietary management of Crohn’s patients.

27. Ulcerative Colitis (UC) and Prebiotics?

UC begins in the left side of the colon and rectum. Normally, the colon contents here are neutral, neither acid nor alkaline. Prebiotin helps to acidify the bowel in this area and in so doing may prevent the injury to the bowel wall that is the hallmark of UC. In addition, there is now research data that shows that the bacterial makeup within the gut in UC patients is less healthy than in normals. There are some early studies to suggest that prebiotics may be a useful addition to the diertary management of UC.

28. Colon polyps/cancer and Prebiotics?

Obesity, processed meats and alcohol have been associated with increased risk of these tumors. On the other hand, fiber, garlic, milk and calcium have shown protective effects. The activity and makeup of the colon bacteria is important as well. It has been found that a high fiber diet as mentioned above plus prebiotics seems to reduce the carcinogens in the bowel. Carcinogens are the chemicals that many researchers believe initiate the the cancer process; a physician’s input in necessary here.

29. Leaky gut and Prebiotics?

When bad or unwanted bacteria predominate in the gut, the lining of the gut weakens and so allows certain bacteria and their byproducts, endotoxins or toxins, to move through the bowel wall. From there, they may enter the blood stream reaching the liver and the entire body. Prebiotin changes the bacterial makeup in a positive way and so strengthens the bowel wall. This, in turn, reduces or stops bacteria, endotoxins and toxins from moving through it.

30. Weight loss, obesity and Prebiotics?

Overweight people have an abnormal mix of bacteria in the colon. Prebiotics such as Prebiotin move the bacterial mix in the right direction. This prebiotic also stimulate the production of hormones which dull the appetite and provide a sense of fullness. In animal studies, there is weight reduction when these prebiotics are fed to them. So, prebiotics and Prebiotin may have a role to play in weight loss and appetite control.

31. Reflux Disease and Prebiotics?

Prebiotics and Prebiotin have no known effect on the lower esophagus nor within the stomach. They do not worsen reflux of acid into the esophagus.

32. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and Prebiotics?

IBS is a functional bowel disorder consisting of abdominal distension and fullness, recurrent distress or discomfort and changes in flatulence and stool pattern. Persons with IBS have been found to have a different bacterial mix within the colon, a mix that is abnormal. Prebiotics have been shown to modulate the bacterial mix in a favorable way and may provide symptomatic relief. Prebiotics such as Prebiotin should initially be used in low doses and increased gradually, depending on symptoms of bloating and gas.