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Discover the Difference - VSL#3®

VSL#3 is a potent probiotic medical food that delivers the highest available concentration of beneficial live bacteria of any probiotic in the world

There are four formulations of VSL#3:

  1. Capsules that contain 112.5 billion live bacteria
  2. NEW - VSL#3 JUNIOR packets that contain 225 billion live bacteria
  3. Packets that contain 450 billion live bacteria
  4. Double Strength (DS) packets that contain 900 billion live bacteria. Due to the potency of this formulation, VSL#3 DS is a prescription only
    medical food.


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VSL#3 high-potency probiotic medical food contains 8 different strains of live lactic acid bacteria that were specially selected to produce an optimal synergistic composition of bacteria. The 8 strains are:

  • Bifidobacterium breve
  • Bifidobacterium longum
  • Bifidobacterium infantis
  • Lactobacillus acidophilus
  • Lactobacillus plantarum
  • Lactobacillus paracasei
  • Lactobacillus bulgaricus
  • Streptococcus thermophilus

How does VSL#3 work?

According to the latest definition, a probiotic has to 'confer a benefit to the host.' The following benefits are taken from studies of VSL#3.

VSL#3 acts as a protective barrier in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. link

VSL#3 works by colonizing the GI tract with optimal quantities and types of probiotic bacteria. These bacteria adhere to the walls of the GI tract and form a barrier that protects the inner layer of the gut from pathogens. Pathogens release toxic substances that can cause a reduction in the number and type of bacteria in the intestine, which can affect a person's intestinal health.

The human GI tract has thousands of billions of resident bacteria called commensal bacteria. In order to change the composition of this gut flora in a positive way, an extremely large amount of probiotic bacteria is necessary. VSL#3 is the only probiotic preparation that delivers enough bacteria to beneficially affect the gut flora in patients with serious intestinal disorders.

VSL#3 bacteria make it all the way through the GI tract.

Further reading:
Link 1 | Link 2 | Link 3 | Link 4 | Link 5 | Link 6 | Link 7

At the cellular level, VSL#3 positively affects a variety of substances that are involved in gut function. This is important to ensure the correct absorption of nutrients and to maintain barrier function.

Finally, evidence suggests that VSL#3 can reduce intestinal permeability by tightening the junctions between the cells in the outer layer of the intestine which reduces the likelihood of translocation (pathogens moving from the intestine into the blood).

protection barrier