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Awareness of Probiotics Rises, Confusion PersistsAwareness of Probiotics Rises, Confusion Persists

December 1, 2011

2 Min Read
Awareness of Probiotics Rises, Confusion Persists

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.Currently, 45% of Americans consider themselves very or somewhat knowledgeable about the benefits of probiotics on digestive health, compared to 36% in 2009, according to results of an annual benchmark survey by The Dannon Company.

The annual survey, which interviewed 2,000 Americans ages 18 and older, tracks awareness and perceptions of probiotics. It shows that nearly two-thirds of Americans are familiar with the term probiotics," up from about half in 2009; and 45% of Americans consider themselves very or somewhat knowledgeable on the subject, compared to 36% in 2009. Survey results also reveal Americans are making health-conscious decisions about the foods they eat, with six in 10 saying they have made food purchases driven by health concerns.

Results also show that despite increased consumer knowledge, there are still some misunderstandings about what probiotics are and how they work. To combat this, Dannon has partnered with Keri Glassman, a nationally recognized registered dietician, and founder and president of Nutritious Life and author of The O2 Diet," to educate Americans about digestive health and the benefits of probiotics.

The following are some myths and misperceptions uncovered by the survey, and the facts to set them straight:

  • 22% of survey respondents believe that all bacteria can make you sick. In reality, just the opposite is true. Probiotics are live bacteria that, when consumed in adequate amounts, provide health benefits, which include help supporting the immune system, helping regulate the digestive system, and helping maintaining oral health.

  • One-third of respondents feel uncomfortable eating foods that contain bacteria. What these individuals dont realize is that eating certain foods containing probiotics can help regulate the digestive system, when consumed as part of a balanced diet and lifestyle. Adding a component to your daily diet that helps your digestive system, such as a yogurt containing probiotics, is a great way to help keep your digestive health in check and make you feel better overall," Glassman said.

  • 30% of Americans are unaware that different strains of probiotics have different benefits. There are numerous categories and subcategories of probiotics, and each strain may offer different benefits when consumed. Be a smart shopper and carefully read the claims on product packaging so you understand the potential benefits," Glassman said. If you dont see the information youre looking for, try visiting the product website or calling the manufacturer; if a product truly contains probiotics, the manufacturer will have information about clinical studies readily available."

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