GoodBelly Probiotic Drinks: Are They Good for Your Gut?

GoodBelly probiotic drinks are non-dairy drinks with the live and active Lactobacillus plantarum 299v probiotic strain in them. The drinks are manufactured by NextFoods and are the only beverages in the USA that offer this probiotic strain. They are found in the refrigerated sections of many grocery and health food stores.

The benefits and characteristics of Lactobacillus plantarum 299v, L. plantarum 299v or Lp299v, as it is often called, from scientific studies are summarized on this page. According to NextFoods, their products “may promote healthy digestion when consumed daily as a part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.”

As of November, 2013, there are 5 main types of these products:

GoodBelly StraightShot: A non-dairy oatmilk 2.7-oz. shot with 20 billion CFU of Lp299v per serving and no added sugar. Total of 3 grams sugar. One serving per day.

GoodBelly BigShot50: A non-dairy oatmilk 2.7-oz. shot with 50 billion CFU of Lp299v per serving and no added sugar. Total of 5 grams of sugar. Comes in 2 flavors, Lemon Ginger and Vanilla Chamomile. This is the most potent product in the GoodBelly line of products and may be found in the refrigerated supplement section of stores. One serving per day.

GoodBelly+ : A single-shot 2.7 oz serving which contains 20 billion CFU (10 billion in the citrus varieties) of Lp299v plus 9 vitamins and calcium. Has added cane sugar for a total of about 9 grams of sugar. One serving per day. Comes in 4 flavors at this time: Blueberry Acai, Mango, Pomegranate Blackberry and Strawberry.

GoodBelly Family-Sized Quarts: 32-ounce cartons of juice with four 8-ounce servings per quart. Each serving contains 20 billion CFU of Lp299V. (Citrus varieties contain 10 billion.) Has added cane sugar. One serving per day.

GoodBelly Gluten-Free Family-Sized Quarts:  32-ounce cartons with four 8-ounce servings per quart. Each serving contains 20 billion CFU of Lp299V. (Citrus varieties contain 10 billion.) Look for the green caps. All flavors but coconut water have added cane sugar. One serving per day.

The quarts are available in various flavors:

  • Pomegranate Blackberry
  • Cranberry Watermelon
  • Mango
  • Blueberry Acai
  • Coconut Water (GF option)
  • Tropical Green
  • Tropical Orange (GF option)
  • Pink Grapefruit (GF option)
  • Carrot Ginger (GF option)

What Are the Pros of These Probiotic Drinks?

The good points about these probiotic drinks as I see them are:

  1. They contain a proven strain of probiotic at a proven dosage (10 billion CFU were used in many studies and all GoodBelly products contain 10 – 50 billion colony forming units of probiotics per serving, depending on the product)
  2. They are dairy-free
  3. They are soy-free
  4. They are vegan and Kosher
  5. They are certified organic (except for the gluten-free versions) so no GMO’s either
  6. Oat flour used in some of the gluten-free products is from non-GMO oats.
  7. They offer NSF certified gluten-free products
  8. Some of the products have no added sugar
  9. Numerous flavors to suit different tastes
  10. Dosage of 10 billion CFU per day is suitable for all ages. (Always remember to start with low dosages for a few days to give your body time to adjust before increasing the dosage).
An interesting thing about these NextFoods products is that they have a money-back guaranteed 12-Day Challenge with coupons if you join on their website.

What Are the Cons of These Probiotic Drinks?

The cons of these probiotic drinks as I see them are:

  1. Most of the products are NOT gluten free and they directly contain oat flour and/or barley malt
  2. The only gluten-free products are the juices and coconut water, which are high in sugar, and some of these contain non-GMO oat flour so beware if you are sensitive to oats
  3. The juice shots have somewhere around 9 grams of sugar per shot
  4. The quart cartons I checked have added cane sugar which makes some of the products, such as the Cranberry Watermelon, have 28 grams of total sugar per serving (8 oz.) at the time of this writing
  5. There is only one species/strain of probiotics in the product, so if you decide to drink these, I recommend that you also consider getting more microbes from fermented foods and drinks and/or probiotic supplements.

Have You Tried GoodBelly? What Do YOU Think About It?

Thanks to my friend Brenda for suggesting a review of this product!

I'd love to know what YOU think about this drink. Please leave comments in the box below or use the Contact Us form.


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