Fermented Supplements: Why the Gut Benefits of Fermented Foods Also Apply to Supplements

Written by Nikki Lyn Pugh

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Chances are you’ve read or heard about the numerous health benefits of fermented foods such as sauerkraut (cabbage) and other veggies, kombucha drinks, and even fermented dairy products such as yogurt and kefir. But have you heard of the advantages of fermented supplements? If not, read on! If you want to get the best bang for your supplement buck, then fermented supplements from a quality source is definitely something to consider.

Your Gut Health Depends on Your Gut Bacteria

Why Fermentation is Good For Your BodyDid you know that there are trillions of tiny organisms living in your digestive tract? These go by different names including gut flora, intestinal flora, gut bacteria, or even microbiota.

Collectively this biological system in known as the “microbiome.” You can remember it this way… you have trillions of microbiota in your microbiome, which resides in your GI tract, or gut.

Now some of these microbiota are healthy for you. They are helpers and may assist in everything from food assimilation to the creation of T Cells for your immune system. Other bacteria, however, are not so helpful. In fact, they can be downright dangerous and often lead to all kinds of digestive and other health issues.

When it comes to gut health, the name of the game is to have sufficient quantities of the good bacteria in your gut at all times that outnumber the “bad.” That’s not to say that a little bit of the “bad” bacteria isn’t important as well. Having a small quantity of bad bacteria keeps the helpful bacteria, as well as your immune system in general, primed and ready to go.

Since our environment, lifestyle, and the foods we typically eat provide plenty of opportunities for harmful bacteria to flourish, our ongoing job is to keep that supply of good bacteria coming into (and thriving in) our gut. We do this by eating the right kinds of foods (and eliminating harmful ones), drinking plenty of filtered water for detoxifying, and getting the right kinds of supplements for our unique needs.

Foods that Help or Harm Your Microbiome

Some of the ways you may be putting your microbiota out of balance and taxing your digestive system include:

  • Lack of fermented foods in your diet
  • Lack of probiotics in your diet
  • Lack of prebiotics in your diet
  • Insufficient enzyme-rich foods
  • Diet high in carbohydrates and sugar
  • Diet high in poor quality fats
  • Too many inflammatory foods, too few anti-inflammatory foods and substances
  • Foods laden with antibiotics, preservatives, toxins, and chemicals
  • Alcohol
  • Lack of polyphenols and resveratrol
  • Too few antioxidant-rich foods

Why Fermentation is Good for Your Gut Health

Fermentation is “the chemical breakdown of a substance by bacteria, yeasts, or other microorganisms, typically involving effervescence and the giving off of heat.” It has been used (accidentally and on purpose) since antiquity. Prior to electricity and refrigeration, fermentation was (and still is) a way to make wine and beer and to preserve all categories of foods, including meats. Because bacteria are responsible for the fermentation process, when you eat fermented foods you bring a dose of these probiotic or good bacteria (“probiotic” means “pro-life”) into your digestive system.

Some of the health effects that many people report feeling from consuming fermented foods include reduced stress, less fatigue, higher antioxidant content, improved mood, and a boosted immune system!

In general, fermentation does some very important things in your body. It helps pathogens be destroyed more rapidly, it strengthens the barriers between your blood supply and your GI tract (when this barrier is weak, you may be at risk of “leaky gut”). It also introduces very helpful antimicrobials into your system, such as bacteriocins, which are tiny amino acids that stop the growth of harmful bacteria.

Most importantly to our discussion here, fermentation helps enhance the vitamin and mineral content of whatever is being fermented. You guessed it: this goes for vitamin, mineral, and herbal supplements as well!

9 Ways That Fermentation Helps to “Super-Charge” Your Supplements

BasicallySuper-Charge Your Supplements with Fermentation, what fermentation does for food it can also do for your supplements, and them some! Research shows that fermenting vitamins, minerals, and herbs before encapsulating them can enhance them in a number of ways:

  1. Increased antioxidants – fermentation can increase the antioxidant properties of your supplements, which means that your bones, immune system, and intestinal lining are all getting super antioxidant support.
  2. Increased bioavailability – it can increase the bioavailability of vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B, magnesium, zinc, and many others. (Making something more “bioavailable” means making the nutrients more available for your body to absorb.)
  3. Natural preservative – fermentation can protect against spoilage as fermentation is a natural preservation process. While fermentation is a chemical process, it doesn’t rely on the addition of harmful chemicals.
  4. Boosts anti-inflammatory potential – it boosts the potential of anti-inflammatory substances such as capsicum significantly.
  5. Enhances amino acid content – fermentation makes amino acids more available, including in freeze-dried and powdered green drink mixes and protein powders. One study found that fermentation of organic, sprouted brown rice protein powder enhanced both the amino acid content as well as the bioavailability of the product as a whole.
  6. Enhanced Chelation – fermentation of substances such as chlorella and spirulina can enhance their ability to chelate (bind with) heavy metals.
  7. Better absorption – it helps your supplement become absorbed in your GI tract more effectively.
  8. Formation of new nutrients – fermentation of certain plants and other foods may actually form phytonutrients and other nutrients that weren’t there before. For example, a report published in the International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition found that naturally fermenting fenugreek leaves not only enhanced levels of pyridoxine and ascorbic acid (vitamin C), but actually created vitamin B12, which was not in the herb before fermentation.
  9. Supports healthy cells – consuming fermented foods in any form helps your cells stay pliable and toxin-free!

Are Fermented Foods & Supplements for You?

Adding fermentation into your diet in some way every day simply needs to be part of any good digestive health protocol. There was a time when “going fermented” was a fun and interesting adjunct to an otherwise fairly healthy diet. Or perhaps you think that eating fermented foods is just for people who are “sick.” Times have changed, however.

The toxic burden we’re all exposed to on a daily basis is much higher and our stress levels are greater than ever. Chances are your digestive system and your body as a whole may be feeling the effects of these burdens more and more. If you’re not consuming fermented foods on a regular basis, then a good quality probiotic can make a world of difference to your gut health.

When it comes to your choosing basic supplements − whether you decide to go fermented or not − be sure to choose quality products that you know do not contain harmful fillers. Check your labels and do a little research before you buy that supplement. Believe it or not, some low quality, mass produced multivitamins and other supplements contain toxins such as hydrogenated oils, artificial colors, titanium dioxide, and worse!

If your budget permits, go for the fermented supplements whenever you get a chance. When it comes from a quality source, you’ll be getting more of the good things you want (and your body needs) in a supplement.

Organixx ProBiotixx+ formula contains a single, super-strain of Lactobacillus plantarum, designed to help alleviate constipation… eliminate gas and belly bloat… support your entire immune system… and give you total digestive protection.

Organixx ProBiotixx probiotic formula
Nikki Lyn Pugh
Nikki Lyn Pugh, MFA, INHC is a natural health researcher and writer. She is also an integrative nutritional health coach specializing in autoimmune conditions, chronic stress, and energy medicine. She loves to inspire people to become empowered with their health through education and gentle guidance. Nikki lives and works in Cottonwood, AZ, with her bunny "Mr. Dot."

Article Summary

  • Did you know that there are trillions of tiny organisms living in your digestive tract? These go by different names including gut flora, intestinal flora, gut bacteria, or even microbiota.

  • Since our environment, lifestyle, and the foods we typically eat provide plenty of opportunities for harmful bacteria to flourish, our ongoing job is to keep the supply of good bacteria coming into (and thriving in) our gut.

  • Some of the ways you may be putting your microbiota out of balance and taxing your digestive system include:

    • Lack of fermented foods in your diet
    • Lack of probiotics in your diet
    • Lack of prebiotics in your diet
    • Insufficient enzyme-rich foods
    • Diet high in carbohydrates and sugar
    • Diet high in poor quality fats
    • Too many inflammatory foods, too few anti-inflammatory foods and substances
    • Foods laden with antibiotics, preservatives, toxins, and chemicals
    • Alcohol
    • Lack of polyphenols and resveratrol
    • Too few antioxidant-rich foods
  • Because bacteria are responsible for the fermentation process, when you eat fermented foods you bring a dose of these probiotic or good bacteria (“probiotic” means “pro-life”) into your digestive system.

  • Research shows that fermenting vitamins, minerals, and herbs before encapsulating them can enhance them in a number of ways.

  • If you’re not consuming fermented foods on a regular basis, then a good quality probiotic can make a world of difference to your gut health.

Reader Interactions


  1. Now that’s an interesting article and believe me I was looking for all the information I can on fermented foods and now we have the supplements great article matter of fact it to Super at Co and yes Foods into my diet and I will be ordering the fermented supplements along the way if you do any more out of cosine fermented foods please keep me in mind and send them my way Tricia in Hawaii

      • Ahmed, you really should research this; it is very worthwhile. I don’t know a good easy definition to tell you, or I would. It has something to do with taking out oxygen, I think, and thus helping your body fight oxidation. Natural apple cider vinegar with the mother is one of the best things for you there is and it is fermented. I wish I could help. But I’m better at just knowing if something is good or bad and figuring out what to take for it, than actually remembering things to where I can explain them easily. Hopefully someone else on here may be able to give a good answer for you. But it is DEFINITELY work looking into for you–for anyone!

    • Joan, I just read that mercury exposure can cause tremors. Consider doing a heavy metal detox (chelation). I know things like parsley & cilantro are chelators too. I just heard about the fermented supplements myself so I am unable to comment on that.

      • I have a hand tremor also. Last time I was tested, I had no heavy metals in my body. It’s a problem. Makes my handwriting ugly & squiggly and I spill food from spoons and forks.

        • If you went to western medicine doc. you may want to consider going to a functional medicine doc and send your test results to them. What western medicine considers normal is so far out of wack with what healthy is.

      • I have had a ”non essential” tremor in my left hand for well over 10 years (maybe 15). Just recently, it has spread to my right hand. It is also getting more essential! When I hold my Kindle with that hand now, it shakes so bad I can’t read it anymore. I have TONS of mercury in my mouth. I watch it everywhere else. No tuna, fish maybe once a year, NO MORE MERCURY LIGHT BULBS! But now that I see this, I wonder if it might be from the mercury overload, and I wonder why no doctor has ever mentioned this to me at ALL! I would love to find something easy and cheap to chelate the mercury!

    • Gut health always great to do … big support to epigenetics…Joan check out a company called Elixinol .. google some info on Dr Philip Blair to check out tremor info

    • I have found that using Vetiver essential oil morning and night decreases the tremors. I put in on my wrists and rub it in to my wrists and inside my elbow bend.

  2. OK, the supplements I take are primarily from MegaFoods, including their MegaFlora probiotics. Also drink GT’s Kombucha regularly as well as Kefir. Also consume organic whole milk yogurt, Bubbies Sauerkraut, and Dr Mercola’s fermented chlorella.
    Sorry, but cannot see the point of more fermented supplements, but appreciate the info.

      • Sorry, i didn’t mean to say that i bought the book, Nourishing Traditions twice, although i have actually bought my mom a copy as a Christmas present several years ago.

      • I was told by a Life Extension advisor that Sauer kraut is more goitrogenic for hypothyroid patients than regular raw cabbage, and that fermenting cabbage increases the goitrogenic strength. I have Hashimotos and so don’t use sauer kraut. Its hard to find ready made fermented foods without cabbage in the stores. I’d like to know if you sell fermented non-goitrogenic veggies or fruit in jars, or where I can get them. Also fermented supplements. Didn’t see any supps on this site here. Thanks

        • I am making my own sauerkraut at home. I know the quality of the cabbages and carrots. Than cutting in little pieces add salt (18g per each kg of cabbage). After the cabbage starts sweating I smash it hit it to make enough sause to cover while container with liquid. If not enough pour a bit of water. On top you have to put some leads from the cabbage. Those delayed one’s from the top of the cabbages.

      • Sauerkraut is VERY good for you! Whoever said it is not, you need to very carefully evaluate everything you hear from them! Unless you have some specific illness that would make you unable to digest it. Fermented foods are VERY good for you Jorge! Do some research on it (not from Quackwatch or Universities or mainstream funded organizations) and you will find out! It is hard for me to eat because I do not like bitter or salty or sour tastes, so it is really hard. I actually love it on hot dogs, but that kind of defeats the purpose of eating it! I wonder if t here is something you could add to it to kind of kill some of the taste??? Ideas, anyone?

    • Worth every cent. I take them all at 71 and never felt better. POWERFUL. I also sprout, juice, culture and ferment

  3. I’m sold. Ty Bollinger has integrity in my opinion so I ordered 3 bottles.
    Thanks Ty, Doc Nuzum and Epigenetic Labs.

    • Active bacteria in any product would have to be refrigerated or the lids would pop off. Keep that in mind if you are buying a fermented product….if they don’t come from the fridge they aren’t a lice product

  4. C-Diff. Antibiotics aren’t doing the trick.
    Now looking into fecal transplant which insurance doesn’t cover.
    Could this possibly be the answer?

    • For C Diff large doses of saccharomyces boulardii will really help. Large doses and it will take a few months but stuck with it!

    • Gary we have a friend in FL (77)years old who had C-diff 4 times. On the forth time the doctor said insurance would cover for a fecal transplant. He had it done and is now doing great.
      Rae Rice

  5. I take 7M which is fermented mushrooms, and love it. I sleep better and have more energy through the day.
    Thank you for this amazing supplement.

  6. my girlfriend has digestion issues with dairy products. will this help her with digesting dairy products?

  7. I was hospitalized four years ago and placed on a liquid diet for five days. Afterward I began having symptoms of a gut disorder (diarrhea, painful gas, etc. After several “tests” found nothing my doctor suggested I give up dairy for a week. Voila, in one day I began noticing a difference. I had acquired lactose intolerance and ever since I am dependent on Lactose with every meal containing that slightest amount of dairy. I’ve recently had to increase my quantity of Lactose taken whenever I eat anything that has dairy. Would increasing fermented food help my problem. Thanks. Charles

    • I have been diagnosed with lactose intolerance. Tested! I understand that the higher the content of fats the lesser volume of lactose. I can get away with small amounts of cream as in coffee but react greatly to skim milk yogurt as an example. Experiment with this as it may give you some relief of taking pills all the time. I discovered or became intolerant after a drink to clean out the bowel for a colonoscopy. This drink was full of lactose.. Lactose can even be found in probiotics as they use skim milk to grow them on. Can cause severe reactions. ☹️

  8. I finally found your fermented supplements. Re the multi: It has Kale which is goitrogenic and possibly other goitrogenic foods in it. I assume they are all raw which means the goitrogenic ones should be avoided by people with hypothyroidism. And I heard that when cabbage is fermented its even more goitrogenic than when raw. Maybe other goitrogenic foods in supplements may also be more goitrogenic than the raw forms, and at least just goitrogenic if they are raw. So I’m not sure if I should avoid these with goitrogens. Would be good to use non goitrogenic foods for the many people who are hypothyroid. A hypothyroid version of fermented supplements from whole foods. How about it? Thanks

    • I would like to know more about this too as i am also intolerant to yeast. Also i’m wondering about whether fermented foods are helpful or unhelpful when someone has a Candida problem ?

  9. I keep wondering about Greek God Greek Yogurt Plain, it states it is a proprotic (mispelled) but 1 cup has 15 grams of sugar, I think this must be the milk but is this a good yogurt?

    • Good question. I think not. Pickled foods involve vinegar to preserve them. I think fermenting does not. But vinegar is in itself a fermented product. Anyone else have more info?

  10. I ordered the microbiome flashdrive from this company. Tried calling them numerous times, no product. Not sure i would trust this company

    • We do not sell microbiome flashdrives here at Organixx. Could it have been another company that you purchased this product from?

  11. Fascinating , my main health concern is osteoporosis & a redundant lazy bowel .
    I manage the later with Coloxyl & Movicol & all the fibre food I can manage
    Find Fermentation which I have started on seems to help .
    I take Verapamil 240 mg. which controls my taccycardia , Otherwise I’m healthy @ 79 . My But I am trying to strengthen my bones rather than take those phony pharmaceutical drugs which the idea of frighten the devil out of me . I had taken Fosamax for years which only allowed me to experience numerous breaks . But qnything which helps my bones

    • How about incorporating some magnesium supplements in your diet? I have taken about 600mg a day since my recovery from colon cancer and it keeps me pretty regular. Before my cancer I had no issues but struggled afterwards to obtain optimal regularity. You may need to adjust doses that fit your body but magnesium is great for the bones too so it’s a win-win!!!!

  12. For the last 2 months I’ve tried 2 fermented foods–Bubbies saurkraut (NOT the yuck kraut you’re thinking of–it is crunchy, sweet & salty, excellent quality) & have been eating coconut milk kefir. I’ve recently started making it myself to save money since I need to eat so much of it (a quart lasts me less than a week at $20/quart from the health food store).
    These both have made a HUGE difference in my digestive issues & have been life saving!!! The pain of digestive issues, in case you’re wondering, can be a 9 out of 10 on a pain scale (making me want to (but not!) grab a pain pill (only to have it constipate me more!) After ONE day of eating a tablespoon of kraut (pulverized in the blender to better absorb) before every meal & a scoop of coconut milk kefir 3x daily…food started to move through my intestines & colon creating a huge relief (& a flat stomach again because apparently I had parasites as well). Granted, the gas was embarassing but necessary. I am allergic to mold so I must be careful with kumbacha and kimchi so I can’t comment on those.
    For those with dairy issues—we all should eliminate dairy forever. Coconut milk (if you’re not nut allergic) is anti-inflammatory & soothes the digestive tract. Yes, it’s high in fat but it’s good fat. Research is finding high fat omega 3 rich foods help with digestive issues, arthritis, gout, etc. Quality bone broth has also been life changing!!!
    I’m on a long path of healing my leaky gut but coconut milk kefir & Bubbies fermented saurkraut have given me hope that one day I can return to good health without pain.

  13. I trust Ty I’m signed up @ Organixx I I’ve bought the seminar Cd’s I have stage 4 prostate cancer and looking forward to trying the fermentation supplements the other supplements have extended my quality of life along with fasting for 6 yrs.

  14. Yeah, but if you have a problem with histamine – as I do, a histamine intolerance – fermented foods will raise your histamine level violently and make your REALLY ill! Be careful as you might learn this the hard way.

  15. Very interesting but what are you sources? I cannot find any studies. I would be thankful for mentioning them.

    • Izabela,
      If you are wanting the sources for this article they are on the Sources tab that is directly above the article summary.

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