The best supplements for gut health can significantly help our overall wellbeing, as our gut influences everything from our mood to our immune system. A well-functioning gut can help us digest food and absorb nutrients, but just like any other part of our body, it requires the right nutrients to function optimally, and that's where the best supplements may come into play.
Our gut health is a dynamic and crucial aspect of our overall health, playing a pivotal role in everything from nutrient absorption to immune system support and even our mental health. However, various factors can impact our gut health negatively. These include a diet lacking diversity, high sugar intake, excessive alcohol consumption, and chronic stress. When our gut health is compromised, we may experience a range of symptoms. These can include digestive issues like bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, food sensitivities, unexplained weight changes, fatigue, skin irritations, and mood swings. Pay attention to these signs, as they might indicate that your gut health needs support. For a little more insight, check out our guide on how to improve gut health.
The best supplements for gut health at a glance:
• Best overall probiotic: Symprove Daily Essential Probiotic - View on Symprove
• Best probiotic with digestive enzymes: Artah Enhanced Synbiotic**:** View on Artah
• Best supplement for inflammation: Nutrition Geeks Turmeric Tablets - View on Amazon UK
• Best herbal tincture : Artah Digest + Debloat - View on Artah
Among the best supplements for gut health, the best probiotics are an excellent place to start. These beneficial bacteria work harmoniously with our bodies to support a healthy gut. Probiotics aren't the only players in the game, though. Digestive enzymes can also be helpful. They help break down our food into its parts, enabling us to absorb its nutrients. While our bodies naturally produce these enzymes, factors such as chronic stress, certain medications, and illnesses can impact our digestion.
In our pick of the best supplements for gut health, we've explored a range of products that combine these essential elements - probiotics, powders, tinctures, and digestive enzymes - along with specific vitamins and minerals beneficial for different life stages, such as the best supplements for perimenopause or menopause. So let's get into it.
Disclaimer: Always talk to your GP before starting a new supplement regime.
Best supplements for gut health
Best probiotics for gut health
Best overall probiotic
Symprove stands out as a unique, water-based supplement that delivers four strains of live, active
- It is a water-based formulation rather than capsules
- Highly rated and endorsed by many health practitioners and celebrities
- The 12-week programme is good for those looking to test results
- Contains four unique strains of live-activated bacteria
- Difficult to travel with as much be refrigerated
Best probiotic with digestive enzymes
The Artah Enhanced Synbiotic is designed to bolster your microbiome. It combines scientifically
- Supports diverse and healthy microbiome, improves digestion and IBS symptoms
- Aids post-antibiotic recovery
- Includes probiotic strains and cranberry PACs for sexual health
- Contains digestive enzymes
- Comes in a glass jar
- We can't think of any
Best vegan probiotic
If you are looking for a brand that aligns with your vegan values, then DR. VEGAN Gut Works is a
- Pre and Probiotic
- High CFU count with 50bn CFU
- Delayed-release capsule
- Suitable for vegans
- Some may prefer probiotics for animal-sources
Best everyday probiotic
Bio-Kult is made with beneficial bacteria designed to complement the natural flora in your
- Contains 14 strains of live bacteria
- Convenient capsule form
- Probiotics this doesn't need refrigeration
- Contains milk
Best powders, capsules and tinctures for gut health
Best powder supplement for skin and the gut
The WelleCo's Super Elixir Daily Greens pouch is a comprehensive superfood supplement that works
- Contains a wide range of superfoods for optimal nutrition.
- Suitable for various dietary preferences.
- Contains L-Glutamine
- The powder form is great for putting in smoothies or even in water
- Refillable pouch uses minimal packaging
- Free from synthetics and made from all organic natural ingredients
- Best suited for women
- Contains cereal with gluten
Best digestion supplement for healthy weight loss
The G Herbal WEIGHT supplement improves digestive health by maximising nutrient absorption,
- Helps improve digestion and boost metabolism
- Makes you feel less bloated
- Small packet size, no larger ones available
Best supplement for inflammation
Nutrition Geeks' Turmeric supplements harness the natural power of turmeric and ginger as a
- Small tablets
- Anti-inflammatory and pain reducing
- Suitable for travel
- It can stain your fingers
Best herbal tonic
This herbal tonic from ARTAH is designed to prevent bloating and support digestion. It's a blend
- Liquid herbal tonic to take for digestive help
- Relieves bloating
- Combats wind and stimulates digestion
- Supports the liver
- Requires 1.5ml pipette each time so will run out quickly
Best powder for gut health
DIRTEA's Turkey Tail Mushroom Powder is a fantastic functional mushroom designed to boost
- 30 servings with 2000mg per serving
- Great for immunity and gut health
- Nice packaging and organic ingredients
- Will take time to see the effects
Best magnesium supplement for gut health
Magnesium is the mineral that we are most deficient in. Nutrition Geek's Magnesium Glycinate
- 3 in 1 magsium complex
- Good for supporting gut health, relieving anxiety
- Helps with improving sleep quality, increasing energy levels, and reducing inflammation
- Not specifically a supplement for gut health
Best powder for strengthening the gut lining
L Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid that is concentrated in muscle tissue and can boost
- L-Glutamine helps maintain a healthy stomach and intestinal lining
- Supports optimal gut barrier function and cell reproduction
- Powder form
- Some may prefer capsule form
Best fibre powder
Psyllium Husk, a plant native to India, is known for its rich mucilages, soluble fibres found in
- Non-GMO, Vegan, Organic and without preservatives
- Healthy fibre
- Good value
- Not strictly a supplement
Best digestive enzymes for gut health
Best digestive enzyme for digesting protein
If you have ever seen pineapple paired with pork or other fatty meats - it's for more than taste.
- Enzymatic digestive care
- Extracted naturally from the pineapple plant
- Suitable for vegetarians and vegans
- Best for digesting proteins
Best for lactose sensitivity
Nature's Aid Digestive Enzyme Complex is a blend of Amylase, Protease, Lipase, Lactase, Cellulose,
- Includes lactase enzymes, which improve lactose digestion
- Good value
- If you have another food sensitivities other than lactose, it is best to go for a more targetted digestive enzyme
What is gut health?
Gut health refers to the balance of microorganisms that live in the digestive tract. Each person’s 'gut microbiome' has about 300 to 500 different species of bacteria in their gut. There are trillions of bacteria, yeasts, and viruses that make up the term 'gut microbiome' or 'gut flora'.
While some microorganisms can be harmful to our health, many are extremely beneficial and even essential to our bodies. Looking after your gut health and maintaining the correct balance of these microorganisms can play an essential part in our physical and mental health.
According to Dr E. M. Quigley in his study on gut bacteria in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, having a wide variety of these good bacteria in your gut can enhance your immune system function, improve symptoms of depression, help combat obesity, and provide numerous other benefits.
“Our gut is responsible for absorbing all the lovely nutrients from our food, while our gut microbiome is also responsible for converting a lot of those lovely fibres and antioxidants into beneficial health compounds, such as short-chain fatty acids and secondary metabolites, which have really great anti-inflammatory and gut-supporting effects.
“It’s also responsible for supporting our immune system; 70 per cent of our immune system is housed within the gut, and it plays a key role in identifying friend from foe, allowing the things that will benefit us to come in, whilst keeping out the things that will make us poorly. Having such proximity to our absorption site, it’s important that we keep a strong and balanced immune system within our gut, which is why looking after our gut health and maintaining a good, healthy microbiome is so important for our immunity. It’s when this balance is tipped that we often see a rise in issues such as auto-immune conditions and skin conditions."
If it's a skin condition you're hoping supplements can support you with, here is our guide to the best supplements for skin that nourish from within.
How bacterias influence communication between the gut and the brain...
You may have heard that your gut is your second brain, and in many ways, that is true. Our nervous system is an integral part of understanding gut health. Communication between the gut and the brain is controlled by our immune system, our endocrine system (hormones), enteric nervous system (GI tract). It is termed the second brain due to how closely it resembles our central nervous system, which is connected to the brain.
These systems are all under the influence of the bacteria in our gut. The types and quantity of these bacterias, known as our gut microbiome, can be directly impacted by circumstances such as diet, stress, pollution, and medications. The structure of the microbiome is also known to affect one’s susceptibility to food sensitivities and intolerances.
Therefore, because of the enteric nervous system, the microbes located in our gut are able to create and regulate neurotransmitters that impact mood including dopamine (the feel-good hormone) and the precursors to serotonin (wellbeing hormone). Neurotransmitters are communicators, and serotonin is a neurotransmitter that delivers messages to different parts of the body and highly impacts mood and wellbeing. That is why many IBS sufferers also have anxiety and irregular moods.
Buyer's guide: Best supplements for gut health
We spoke to Artah's founder, nutritionist and naturopath, Rhian Stephenson, to get to grips with what to look out for when it comes to supplements for gut health.
What are the top probiotic strains to look for in a gut health supplement?
"There are a variety of strains that I like to use in practice to support gut health. Some of my favourites include Bifidobacterium longum, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus gasseri, Bifidobacterium breve, and Lactobacillus casei," says Rhian.
How do prebiotics and probiotics work together to support gut health?
"Think of prebiotics like food for probiotics," shared Rhian. "The bacteria use prebiotics as a source of fuel and energy. It's what allows them to survive and multiply."
What are the benefits of taking digestive enzymes for gut health?
"Digestive enzymes are required to help breakdown the food we eat into their component parts so that we're able to absorb its nutrients", says Rhian. "We naturally produce digestive enzymes however, there are a number of lifestyle and medical factors that can negatively impact our digestion."
"For example, chronic stress, post-viral fatigue, IBS, an ultra-processed diet, too much or too little exercise, ageing, and certain medications like proton pump inhibitors, and illnesses like pancreatitis, and diabetes can all have an effect on how efficiently we digest our food. Supplementing with digestive enzymes can help digest food, which may reduce digestive stress, improve nutrient absorption, improve bloating and more."
Are there any specific vitamins, minerals and probiotics that are particularly beneficial for perimenopausal or menopausal women?
It takes more than probiotics to keep your gut healthy. Rhian breaks it down:
"A Vitamin D3, Omega 3, and a multi-vitamin would be a good place to start. From there, you can personalise. For example, Borage Oil can be a fantastic support for menopausal women, as can a complex that targets blood sugar regulation, like Metabolic Fix." Here are our top menopause supplements.
"Did you know that 95 per cent of serotine is found in the Gastrointestinal tract (GI tract)? Cells in the GI tract transport serotonin outside the intestine to the rest of our body. Serotonin is the key hormone that maintains our mood, feelings of well-being, and happiness. So, happy gut happy mind!"
Meet the expert:
This article contains expert advice from Artah's founder, nutritionist and naturopath, Rhian Stephenson and registered Nutritionist Emily English. We've made sure to review and evaluate each supplement we have recommended with the help of expert professionals. Always speak with a healthcare professional before starting a new supplement regime. This will ensure that the supplement is appropriate to you, that you're taking the right dosage for your individual needs, and to ensure it doesn't interact with prescription or over-the-counter medications you may be taking.
Ellen Kinsey is a senior health and wellness product writer for Yours, specialising in natural health and beauty. She lives and breathes all things food, travel and wellness.