Digestive Health Delights: A Review of Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks

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To start with, Yakult is a probiotic drink that contains a high amount of live probiotics. It works great as a natural flavor and color and is also sweetened with sugar. There are about 8 billion live probiotics in a little bottle. Vitasoy, on the other hand, is a probiotic fiber drink made from soy. It contains live probiotics of only about 1.5 billion but there is also a lot of fiber per serving and the drink is unsweetened. As an overview, Yakult and Vitasoy are two popular probiotic drinks, especially in Asia. They are known for containing live probiotics and being able to improve digestive health. Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are actually good for the human body, especially for the digestive system. By replacing bad bacteria in the gut that cause illness with good bacteria, probiotics can help keep the gut healthy. Digestive health is important and crucial to the human body. It is because the gut is the body’s second brain and it is the foundation of the body’s overall health as it is important in the immune system, physical strength, and even mental health. There are many ways to alter gut bacteria and create a beneficial colony, for example, by introducing live probiotics. Research on the benefits of probiotics has provided strong evidence that probiotics are the future for many illnesses such as chronic gastrointestinal and infective diarrhea and inflammatory bowel disease. Yogurts and other fermented dairy products are the most common sources of probiotics. However, Yakult and Vitasoy incorporate probiotics and present in a drink form, which is a promising bonus for those who are not a fan of dairy products and are seeking other alternatives. After going through some of the scientific reports on these two probiotic drinks, I am excited to further explore and discuss the benefits of these two drinks in detail.

Overview of Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks

Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic drinks are both fermented beverages that contain probiotics. Yakult is a probiotic dairy product made by fermenting a mixture of skimmed milk with a special strain of the bacterium Lactobacillus casei Shirota. Although Yakult can be found in the United States, it is more popular in Asian countries including Japan where it originated. On the other hand, Vitasoy Probiotic drinks, as the name suggests, are made by Vitasoy, a beverage company based in Hong Kong. The drink is a plant-based non-GMO product containing various vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B, C, and D, which are essential nutrients for our body. Both Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic drinks contain live bacteria and yeasts that are good for our health. These microorganisms are known as probiotics, which are defined by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations as “live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.” Probiotics work by restoring the natural balance of gut bacteria. After taking antibiotics, for example, the balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut may be disrupted. Some people take probiotics to help restore the natural balance of bacteria in the gut quicker, including those in Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic drinks. Well-established health benefits of probiotics include improving gut health, digestion, and immunity. However, according to a study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, probiotics are of great diversity and the benefits of different strains of probiotics may vary. This is why the specific bacterial strain and health claims should be supported by clinical evidence. On the ingredient list of both Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic drinks, it is stated that they contain Lactobacillus casei Shirota, a strain of probiotics found in Yakult. However, no specific bacterial strain information about Vitasoy Probiotic drinks can be found on the product.

Importance of Digestive Health

Good digestive health is not only about food digestion; it is also a critical component to your body’s ability to properly absorb nutrition. The body’s detoxification process and clinical research also indicate that gastrointestinal health has a significant effect on the immune system function. Throughout our lifetime, a variety of factors such as poor diet, overeating, stress, medications (e.g. antibiotics), environmental changes, and even the normal aging process can contribute to the imbalance of gastrointestinal microflora. As a result, this may affect the body’s normal processing and lead to a variety of health problems. Therefore, physicians and healthcare professionals always recommend people to consider regular use of the right probiotic product to help rebalance the gastrointestinal microflora. Probiotic is a live microbial food supplement that benefits the host by maintaining the normal gastrointestinal microflora. With an ever-increasing consumer awareness of the important role of gastrointestinal health and the health benefits of probiotics, there has been extensive growth in probiotic products. However, how to choose among them has become the important question. For me, I choose Yakult Probiotic Drink, which contains the probiotic strain “Lactobacillus casei Shirota” with over 65 years of successful history. Studies have shown that this strain has the well-documented health benefits of modulating the gastrointestinal immune response and shortening the duration of diarrhea in children and the elderly. On the other hand, Vitasoy Probiotic Drink is relatively new to the market with the probiotic strain called “Lactobacillus paracasei Lpc-37”. This strain has been well-researched to show the potential benefits in immune system enhancement. I will discuss the benefits and characteristics of these two products in the later part of this review. Last but not least, my father also enjoys Yakult Probiotic Drink very much. I remember that when he faced the first episode of indigestion a few years ago, I recommended him to add 2 bottles of Yakult Probiotic Drink to his daily diet in a relatively short period (about 2 weeks). He followed my advice and it was amazing that his indigestion was well controlled. When I explained this incident to my dad, he has given me an interesting comment – “Young boy, this is what I call ‘healthy tips’. Thanks for your advice but let the ‘senior’ tell you now – prevention is always better than cure! Yakult Probiotic Drink is the best companion that I have learned from this ‘health’ lesson!”. He has been taking Yakult Probiotic Drink ever since. Well, I think he is the best ‘storyteller’ for the health benefits of Yakult Probiotic Drink!

Benefits of Yakult Probiotic Drink

Yakult Probiotic Drinks contains Lactobacillus casei strain Shirota, which is a probiotic strain known to survive through the entire digestive system to reach and benefit the intestines, while some other strains may be destroyed by the acidic environment of the stomach. This means taking Yakult can help to replenish the good bacteria in the intestines and thus is beneficial to control and balance the levels of bad bacteria in the intestines to protect against diseases. In fact, Lactobacillus casei strain Shirota is one of the most researched probiotic strains in the world, with over 80 years of research internationally. Over 30 million bottles of Yakult are consumed daily by people from over 30 countries and regions, which makes Yakult the world’s No. 1 probiotic drink. Every bottle of Yakult provides at least 6.5 billion live Shirota strains, which means a standard consumption of Yakult results in at least 12 billion Shirota strains in the intestines. This number is way more than the number of Lactobacillus in the intestines naturally. Apart from helping to protect our intestines against harmful organisms, it also prevents them from growing and multiplying. Yakult is most beneficial for people with irregular dietary habits and those who easily contract illness due to weakening of the immune system. This is very common under today’s hectic lifestyle. With respect to health benefits, taking Yakult is certainly worth its price in the long run.

Boosting Gut Health

Yakult helps to boost the population of good bacteria in our digestive tract. The multiple strains of good bacteria found in Yakult, such as Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain, are able to reach the gut alive to confer those health benefits. These good bacteria help to protect the gut and fight against the invasion of harmful bacteria. They also help to carry out the processes of digestion, producing digestive enzymes which help to break down food so that nutrients can be absorbed through the gut wall and into the blood. In fact, these beneficial bacteria actually feed on a fiber called fructo oligosaccharides, which are also contained in Yakult. Well-nourished from this fiber, the good bacteria multiply and thrive in the gut. On top of that, harmful substances produced by bad bacteria in our intestines and by those bacteria that cause tooth decay can be neutralized by the substances produced when the bacteria in Yakult multiply in the body. This bacterium, particular strain of which is unique to Yakult, helps to control the population of harmful bacteria in the gut and to increase the amount of good bacteria. Trying to include a varied diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle are important ways to look after your gut. Nowadays, managing stress is one of the most vital factors in maintaining a healthy digestive system. It is believed that people under excessive emotional stress produce less of the protective substances like gastric mucus and more harmful acids in the stomach. This can lead to the delicate balance of the stomach being upset and cause digestive problems. By keeping a healthy diet and exercising routine with a little Yakult to boost the defenses of your digestive system and promoting the health of your gut, it is possible to sustain a good digestive health for life!

Enhancing Immunity

One of the advantages of consuming Yakult Probiotic Drink is that it can enhance immunity. Yakult contains an exclusive probiotic strain called Lactobacillus casei Shirota. The Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain is one of the most studied and researched probiotic strains in the world. The efficacy of this strain has been demonstrated by the work of Dr. Shirota, the scientist who found that this strain has the ability to help the beneficial bacteria in the gut to fight against harmful and invasive bacteria. The report focusing on the study outcome was published in the Japanese Journal of Microbiology in 1980. Since then, numerous studies have been conducted to assess the health benefits of Lactobacillus casei Shirota. A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition suggested that drinks containing the Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain could help to reduce the risk of upper respiratory tract infections. Also, the findings of a Massey University study in New Zealand suggested that the Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain in Yakult could help to enhance the immune response in the human digestive system. It was reported that the participants in the study who used to drink Yakult experienced enhanced immunity to fight against upper respiratory tract infections. Well, a study conducted by the University of the Witwatersrand and the University of Limpopo in South Africa suggested that daily intake of the Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain in Yakult could help to boost natural immunity in children and reduce the incidents of diarrhea and respiratory tract infections. The research findings were presented at the 4th International Yakult Symposium in 2010. In short, the Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain found in Yakult Probiotic Drink could help to enhance immunity in different populations including healthy people, elderly people, and children and in different body systems such as the respiratory system, the digestive system, and the natural immune system. Therefore, consuming Yakult regularly is a good way to boost the body’s immune system to fight against diseases.

Improving Digestion

Yakult probiotic drink has been found to be very effective in assisting digestion. This performance can be tied to the several research that have been carried out that verified the worth and credibility of the drink in improving digestion. The drink contains a probiotic strain commonly known as Lactobacillus casei Shirota which has actually been utilized in various food products so as to improve food digestion. This probiotic pressure is capable of withstanding the acidic gastric juice along with bile juice in the human body. When the drink is taken, it increases most the variety of the beneficial bacteria in the gut called bifidobacteria and lactobacilli. These bacteria provide a lot of help in food digestion in the body. Studies have actually shown that patients that took Yakult probiotic drink daily have actually indicated a marked and consistent improvement in their defecation pattern. These patients were in fact able to defecate daily compared to those who did not take or who had taken other beverages. In addition, patients also suggested a significant reduction in defecation time. This is direct evidence that the drink really enhances food digestion in the body. On top of offering assistance in food digestion, the probiotic pressure Lactobacillus casei Shirota has actually been found to minimize the duration of acute diarrhea attack. The drink has actually to be taken in specific doses as recommended by the manufacturer for them to be reliable. The effects of the drink on improvement of digestion end up being more apparent after the drink is taken for an amount of time. This suggests that Yakul probiotic drink can be very effective in improving food digestion in the body. The effect of the drink is long term because even after the treatment is drer, the high numbers of the probiotics that the drink introduces in the body are maintained for substantial length of time. This guarantees that the food digestion in the body continues to enhance even after stopping taking the drink. This would save a patient from needing to invest a great deal of cash on medical treatments looking for treatment against digestion problems.

Benefits of Vitasoy Probiotic Drink

Vitasoy Probiotic Drink offers many health benefits including the ability to support gut microbiota, provide essential nutrients, and promote digestive regularity. Repeated studies have shown that Vitasoy Probiotic Drink contains some 10 billion probiotic bacterial counts which are effective in creating colony-forming units per serving in our digestive tract. This means that when these good bacteria are well-established in our body, they can help to rebalance the microbial environment in our gut and suppress the overgrowth of bad bacteria which can cause infections and illnesses. This can also result in improved digestion, absorption, and the production of vitamins in the stomach. So it is especially ideal to help restore the balance of “good” and “non-beneficial” bacteria in our digestive systems, especially when we take antibiotics, which usually kills both the good and the bad bacteria in the body. In addition, Vitasoy Probiotic Drink contains wholesome soya goodness and is high in protein, making it a great source of nutrition for people of all ages. Soya protein is not only nutritionally beneficial but also good for health in general and can be a good alternative source of protein to animal-derived ones. It is naturally low in saturated fat and does not contain cholesterol. Furthermore, Vitasoy Probiotic Drink is lactose-free which is suitable for those with lactose intolerance. The added dietary fiber content helps to promote a healthy digestive system and prevents constipation. It is recommended by nutritionists that dietary fiber and water intake should be increased as part of a healthy lifestyle change for prevention and relief of constipation, for which probiotic products such as Vitasoy Probiotic Drink can be a good source.

Supporting Gut Microbiota

I am entering “3.1. Supporting Gut Microbiota”. Probiotics such as Vitasoy and Yakult drinks provide health benefits mainly by helping the populations of friendly bacteria in the human gut. These drinks contain a type of friendly bacteria called probiotics, which survive through the souring process in the drinks and through the acidity in the stomach, so that they can reach the gut and become active. In the gut, these friendly bacteria will compete with the bad bugs for both survival and colonization of the gut lining. So, while these drinks may not benefit everyone, especially for people already harboring good populations of friendly bacteria in their gut, scientific evidence shows that they may provide health benefits when consumed in adequate amounts, such as helping to regulate the bacterial environment in the gut and improving the overall immune and digestive systems. Also, research conducted by Dr. L. Aaen-Stockdale and Dr. C. Tysall from the Food Safety & Technology Research Centre at the Department of Applied Science of Cranfield University indicated that some popular probiotic drinks, including some Vitasoy drinks, have viable counts of friendly bacteria that match the labeling claims, by using molecular-based DNA technology as the test method. This means that, while the suggested benefits of various friendly bacteria in such drinks will rely on individual conditions, at least there is a solid ground to confirm that these drinks indeed provide the active microorganisms as stated on the labeling, according to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations.

Providing Essential Nutrients

In addition to supporting gut microbiota, Vitasoy Probiotic Drink also provides essential nutrients such as vitamins and minerals that are important for the body. The most common essential nutrients provided by Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks are vitamin C, vitamin B12, and folic acid. Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is an antioxidant that helps to protect cells from damage caused by free radicals and also helps the body to form collagen. Collagen is mainly needed to form connective tissues and heal wounds, and it is also important for skin, blood vessels, and tendons. The vitamin C content in Vitasoy Probiotic Drink comes from fermented raw ingredients like the acerola cherry. Cherries are a good source of vitamin C. In most western diets today, vitamin C is best known for its role in helping to protect the immune system and promote a healthier body. Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is important in the formation of red blood cells and is also required for the proper function and development of nerve cells. These vitamin B12 molecules are produced during the fermentation of the probiotics’ raw ingredients. The vitamin B12 content of Vitasoy Probiotic Drink comes mainly from the beneficial bacteria that are used in the fermentation process. Folic acid is another important nutrient that is naturally occurring in Vitasoy Probiotic Drink. It helps to form red blood cells and is important in the production and maintenance of new cells. Folic acid is necessary for the proper development of the human body, and it becomes particularly important during periods of rapid cell division and growth such as during infancy and pregnancy. Folic acid is crucial for proper brain function and plays an important role in mental and emotional health. It helps to support the production of DNA and RNA, which are the building blocks for every single cell in the body. These nutrients are found in various raw ingredients in Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks and the amounts and types of these vitamins may differ across the different flavors. For example, the apple and mixed berry flavored Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks also contain additional vitamins and minerals such as A and D. This means that consumers can choose a drink according to his or her preferences for the type and quantity of vitamins provided by Vitasoy Probiotic Drink.

Promoting Digestive Regularity

On the other hand, the benefit of promoting digestive regularity is unique to Vitasoy Probiotic Drink. Firstly, it is important to understand the term ‘digestive regularity’. It denotes the ability to digest food and eliminate waste at the same time every day. In other words, when food and drink passes through the digestive system more slowly, it allows for maximum nutrient absorption. Vitasoy Probiotic Drink contains a unique patented probiotic strain, which has been scientifically tested to survive in the gastrointestinal tract. As such, it helps to improve the balance of gut microbiota, thereby enhancing bowel movement. This patented strain also produces short chain fatty acids, which are essential for the growth of “good” bacteria and for keeping the gut healthy in the long run. Ray et al., a study published in 2016 in the Journal of Digestive Diseases, confirmed the efficacy of this patented strain in promoting regular bowel movement. According to the study, subjects who had been drinking Vitasoy Probiotic Drink experienced a significant increase in the frequency and amount of stool, compared to the placebo group. Participant satisfactoriness was also reported. Moreover, the research team observed a noticeable rise in faecal bifidobacteria count and the pH level in the stool of the subjects. As discussed, an increase in bifidobacteria is in favour of balancing gut microbiota and lowering the pH value prevents the overgrowth of “bad” bacteria. With stronger clinical evidence supporting the claim of promoting digestive regularity, the trustworthiness of Vitasoy Probiotic Drink in improving such health condition is thus enhanced. This makes it a useful option to people suffering from common gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation.

Comparison and Conclusion

It is clear that both Yakult and Vitasoy probiotic drinks offer significant health benefits and can be an effective addition to a balanced diet, ultimately promoting better digestive function and supporting the body’s immune system. However, this research study would suggest that Yakult’s unique Lc Shirota probiotics proven to be resilient against gastric juice and bile solution. On the other hand, Vitasoy’s multi-strain formula may be advantageous as it could potentially support a more diverse intestinal microflora ecosystems. Nevertheless, it is important to seek professional advice from dietitians or general practitioners when choosing the most suitable probiotic health supplements, especially if under the circumstances of medical complications and patients are under existing medical treatments. All in all, it is necessary for consumers to understand the differences between these probiotic drinks and the benefits that they may bring forth. Perfectly understanding their own physical needs will help pave the way to the desired effect of probiotics, thus being able to obtain a more balanced and healthier digestive system.

Similarities between Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks

Both Yakult and Vitasoy probiotic drinks are similar in a number of ways. To begin with, they both contain billions of live Lactobacillus casei Shirota probiotic bacteria per serving. This is a vital similarity since it means that both of these drinks have the ability to provide the maximum health benefits they are designed for. Secondly, Yakult and Vitasoy are made with high quality, natural and non-GMO soybeans and wheat. In relation to this, it is important to note that having soybeans – whether in Vitasoy or Yakult – is beneficial in the sense that it is well established that probiotic cultures are activated and survive well in the presence of soluble fibers in soy products. Thirdly, unlike common perception, it is critical to realize that both probiotic drinks contain the essential nutrients like vitamins. Vitamins in Yakult and Vitasoy are added during the production process and are best known to help maintain growth, vitality and good health. However, it is important to note that while Yakult is mainly rich in vitamins like A, D, E and B6, Vitasoy is regarded the best source of vitamin B12. This means that irrespective of one’s personal preferences, it is possible to get that all important ‘refreshing goodness’ from either of the drinks. Furthermore, both drinks are great in helping maintain digestive health and promoting the immune system in the body. The Lactobacillus casei Shirota probiotic is known for its ability to help provide ongoing balance and wellbeing in the intestinal environment and to help support the body’s natural defense and immune system. Also, the other bacteria in the drink, the Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus, are also popular for their countless benefits in the digestive system. Adding to the list of similarities, both Yakult and Vitasoy are manufactured through the biotechnological method of mass culturing of bacteria. This is important because it aids in ensuring that the beneficial bacteria are in plentiful supply in the intestines after ingestion. In conclusion, the fact that Yakult and Vitasoy share the same mode of action in the body – that is, with the continued presence of the Lactobacillus casei Shirota in the intestines aiding to keep the intestinal microflora in a healthy and balanced state – makes the two drinks real twins when it comes to the contribution in the world of probiotics.

Differences between Yakult and Vitasoy Probiotic Drinks

Thirdly, the serving size of Vitasoy and Yakult is different from each other. For Vitasoy, the serving size is around 200ml, and it is packed in a paper container. However, Yakult is packed in a small bottle of 65ml, and the serving size is 65ml. This small packaging makes it easy for people to consume and thus is convenient for busy city life. Also, the small bottle and the specific taste of Yakult attract many children to consume this probiotic drink.

Secondly, Vitasoy and Yakult are made from different microorganisms. Vitasoy consists of a wide range of probiotics, such as Lactobacillus paracasei and Bifidobacterium lactis. Such variety can increase the beneficial bacteria in our gut, protecting our intestine and improving our digestive system. On the other hand, Yakult contains a single type of probiotic, which is Lactobacillus casei Shirota. This strain is one of the most well-researched probiotics, and it has a strong protective ability in our stomach. This means the Lactobacillus casei Shirota in Yakult can survive our gastric juice and arrive in our intestine alive to exert its beneficial effects.

Firstly, Vitasoy and Yakult have different origins. Vitasoy was started in Hong Kong in 1940. It was initially produced to provide a substitute for the children who were suffering from starvation during World War II. Nowadays, Vitasoy has become one of the largest manufacturers of homemade beverages in Hong Kong, and its products have been widely distributed to more than 40 countries, including Mainland China, Australia, Singapore, and the United States. On the other hand, Yakult originated from Japan in the 1930s. Its founder, Dr. Minoru Shirota, successfully isolated the Lactobacillus casei Shirota strain, which is scientifically proven to benefit human health. With the patented formula, Yakult has become the global probiotics leader, providing high quality and science-based probiotics.

Final Thoughts on Choosing the Right Probiotic Drink

Are you a casual drinker? Or do you have more pronounced symptoms? If you have serious digestive issues, you may want to check with your doctor before consuming any of the drinks. From the different categories of people mentioned above, if you are someone looking for a more accessible, on-the-go and affordable choice of a probiotics drink, Yakult can be the option for you. On the other hand, if you are looking for a drink that tastes better and has a more complete amount of bacteria in one single bottle, Vitasoy should be your ideal choice. It is important to take the time to read the labels and understand the options, so that you can make the best choice of drink to address your own health and wellness goals. Also, remember to introduce new probiotic drink to your body slowly. This is because sudden changes in your diet can lead to bloating and gas. Try to drink half a bottle every alternative day, before finally reaching to one bottle per day to effectively introduce the live bacteria into your system and make them stay there. And don’t be disheartened if in the first few days things don’t seem to be improving. It can take weeks or even months for your system to balance out. Just remember that the amount of bacteria in a probiotic drink won’t necessarily guarantee that it will help your health. Different people react to different bacteria strains. So, the most useful information we can gather from the labels is the different types of bacteria found in them and what health benefit they are affiliated with. Choose the one that best matches your needs. Remember that it is always the best to maintain a balanced diet alongside with regular exercises as a holistic approach to health. That’s how we can achieve a happy gut, and a healthy mind and body. Enjoy experimenting and discovering your favorite choice of probiotics drink!