Why I Do Not Recommend MegaSporeBiotic a Review

Why I Do Not Recommend MegaSporeBiotic a Review

My Issues With Bacillus licheniformis

What about a new probiotic that produces antioxidants once it propagates in your intestinal tract. Sounds great right?

A probiotic supplement that, in addition, claims to: 1

  • Be designed by nature.
  • Survive the harsh stomach environment.
  • Requires no refrigeration.
  • Include a strain that is the most widely used in the world.
  • Helps regulate the immune system.

The probiotic supplement with all this and more is known as MegaSporeBiotic!

To be honest, if you give me any product – even those that I recommend – I can find something untrue or at least “bending” the truth when it comes to claims made about the product. The same is true for MegaSpore.

MegaSpore makes a claim that the Bacillus species used in their supplement are the most widely researched and used in the world. This statement is grossly incorrect. Bacillus is not a species of bacteria but a genus. 2 Bacteria from the Bacillus genus are not the most widely used and researched “probiotics” in the world, that award goes to the Lactobacillus genus (Bifidobacterium is a close second.) 3 Megaspore also specifically states that Bacillus clausii is the most widely used “probiotic” drug in the world. That award should instead go to Lactobacillus acidophilus, which is found in the prescribed probiotic VSL. 4 5

MegaSpore also makes a claim that Bacillus indicus HU36 would produce a wide variety of carotenoid antioxidants once it colonizes the large intestine. Production of poorly absorbed dietary carotenoid antioxidants in the large intestine would be a great thing if there were any science available outside of the MegaSpore website to back up this theory. It is possible for Bacillus indicus HU36 to produce these antioxidants, 6 but there is no proof whether or not this will occur in animal or human intestinal tracts. Bacillus indicus HU36; itself is a spore-forming marine based bacteria that is not known to be native gut flora to any human, and based on that alone should be supplemented under the supervision of a doctor. Bacillus indicus has also shown resistance to clindamycin in a study. 7

 Bacillus licheniformis

Bacillus licheniformis is one of the worst offending soil based “probiotics” and is known to cause food poisoning, 8 septicemia, 9 10 11 peritonitis, 12 and ophthalmitis. 13 Bacillus licheniformis is not native human flora but appears to be native flora in birds. 14 Bacillus licheniformis is a ubiquitous organism and likely enters the human digestive system many times a day. While data regarding its ability to survive in the human gastrointestinal tract is sparse, it is likely that the spores pass without activating. 15

Bacillus licheniformis is known to cause spontaneous abortions in cattle and sheep as well as contaminate dairy (a cause of food poisoning) with toxins produced from the animals from ingestion of spoilage. B. licheniformis is a spore former and likely to survive all industrial processing of milk, such as the manufacture of milk powder and whey concentrate. Toxins produced by B. licheniformis interfere with mitochondrial function and over-activate the TRPV1 receptors in the intestines causing diarrhea. 16

Not all strains of Bacillus licheniformis appear to contain toxin expressing genes, but with most probiotic supplements not labeling the strains of bacteria used, it is hard to know what you are taking in. Some “probiotic” supplements have removed it from their formulations in recent years; Garden of Life’s Primal Defense is a prime example of the change of heart. 17

People may criticize me for being overly cautious when it comes to other “HSO” probiotics and their chances of causing infections. There have been some cases involving Bacillus licheniformis causing infections in people who are hospitalized or after surgery and it has even been associated with food poisoning. Lactobacillus acidophilus might have a few cases of septicemia infections in recorded literature, but it is more widely used probiotic and the worse it would cause is easier to identify and treat infections compared to most “HSO’s.” 18 19

Endospores are dormant, tough encapsulations that protect the bacteria from your immune system, antibiotics, antibacterials, and even probiotics. Bacteria can also lie dormant in endospores until their environment becomes favorable for faster reproduction and survival. Bacterial endospores may also become opportunistic in a host, share in a commune with the gut flora for a time. Bacterial endospores can survive without nutrients for a long time and are resistant to UV radiation, desiccation, high temperatures, extreme freezing, and most chemical disinfectants. 20

Since bacteria in the Bacillus genus are spore forming, it becomes hard to eliminate them if they become opportunistic. Most proponents say that the endospore aspect of licheniformis is a good quality in a “probiotic.” Their reasoning behind this recommendation is that since Bacillus licheniformis is encapsulated in an endospore, the bacteria can survive stomach acid when ingested and propagate easily in the intestines.

Bacillus licheniformis has been shown to be immunostimulatory in some cases and produces bactericides to help eliminate other bacteria. 21 Some non-HSO bacteria also produce bactericides to help reduce total bacterial load in the intestines, but most of those bacteria are easy to eliminate if they cause an infection. 22 23 If Bacillus licheniformis becomes opportunistic, its bactericides may target normal probiotic flora and reduce their populations increasing its virulence.

I will not recommend any supplement that uses Bacillus licheniformis because of these possible issues.

Update 1: We recently spoke with Kiran Krishnan, the designer of MegaSpore. He has been working in the probiotic industry for over fifteen years and has some of the same concerns that we do about probiotic companies. He is going to be sharing some data with us in the coming weeks about his quality control methods, and how meticulous he is about keeping his product safe. According to Mr. Krishnan, MegaSpore is used by over a thousand doctors, and many people are seeing positive results with his product.

Update 2: The information Kiran provided us did not meet our expectations and at this time we still cannot recommend Megaspore. I cannot give too much detail because Kiran asked me not to, but most of the information provided were old studies that we were well aware of, promotional literature from Megaspore, and a COA for Bacillus subtilis. I can say that with some certainty that their Bacillus subtilis HU58 strain is labeled correctly and verified pure by the third party COA provided. That being said he provided us no in-house studies or COA’s on the other strains in the supplement including the one I had the most issues within the supplement, Bacillus licheniformis. We contacted Kiran again for more information and we have not heard from him since. If he provides us the requested information, at any time, I would update the blog with more information, but at this time we still do not recommend Megaspore.

We have differing opinions about the Bacillus genus and we invite you to look at the comment section at the bottom of the article for Mr. Krishnan’s rebuttal. We hope that this discussion proves to be valuable, and that the dialog helps you to find the best treatment option under the supervision of a qualified physician.

Update 3: More information on Megasporebiotic.

  1. http://www.gomegaspore.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Patient-Handout.pdf
  2. http://www.ic.ucsc.edu/~saltikov/bio119l/readings/prokaryotes/Bacillus.pdf
  3. http://www.aafp.org/afp/2008/1101/p1073.html
  4. http://www.aafp.org/afp/2008/1101/p1073.html
  5. http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/83/6/1256.full
  6. http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&ved=0CCkQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.researchgate.net%2Fprofile%2FCharlotte_Sy%2Fpublication%2F235629021_Inhibition_of_iron-induced_lipid_peroxidation_by_newly_identified_bacterial_carotenoids_in_model_gastric_conditions_comparison_with_common_carotenoids%2Flinks%2F53f1f7330cf2f2c3e7fca02d.pdf&ei=qLE9VbuXMoqrNsPpgfgH&usg=AFQjCNEM7mj3eEMV10Xwrld5IumPMBwm0g&sig2=xl4VpLoP0jhIXHC_W3r5CA&bvm=bv.91665533,d.eXY
  7. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2672.2008.03773.x/full
  8. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC91618/
  9. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3326966/
  10. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22918867
  11. http://jcm.asm.org/content/33/11/3070.short
  12. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16509927
  13. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-09/documents/fra005.pdf
  14. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-09/documents/fra005.pdf
  15. http://www.epa.gov/biotech_rule/pubs/fra/fra005.htm
  16. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC91618/
  17. http://blog.listentoyourgut.com/bacterial-soil-organisms-hsos-sos-sbos-etc/
  18. http://www.epa.gov/biotech_rule/pubs/fra/fra005.htm
  19. http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/83/6/1256.full
  20. https://micro.cornell.edu/research/epulopiscium/bacterial-endospores
  21. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1472-765X.2004.01478.x/pdf
  22. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12619886
  23. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8854175
  1. After using megasporebiotic 1 month, my histamine allergy worsened, I saw bleeding at stool and my hair started to fall. May I ask you your thoughts about “Klaire Labs” spore based probiotic?
    I have SIBO and I can’t use lavtobacillus strains.

    • Hi, The past 3 years I suffered from
      severe histamine intolerance. ( dehydration, no saliva, dry eyes, hormonal disbalance etc. Luckily the past 6 months I feel much better due to a liw histamine diet and Life Space Probiotics from
      Australia. Unfortunately the pain in my eyes remained so I was advised to buy Megasporebiotics. The first week I noticed the die off symptoms; loose stopls, cramps,bloating and extreme fatigue. The second and third week I kept doubting the side effects being the toxification process towards healing or making it all worse. After nearly 5 weeks of use I still feel bloated for 24-7, which is a negative side effect, stil loose stools but my eyes feel so much better… Since 10 days I noticed pimpels (like a light acne/ rash) on my facial skin. Which I never had Since my puberty. Now I am 46 years old and I eat organic, no gluten,no dairy and very aware of my diet and lifestyle. Should I stop taking Megaspore?? Do you recommend the spore based probiotics from
      dr Mercola?? Bcz his probiotics do not include the histamine releasing spores like in Megaspore. I live in the Netherlands and I do hope you will leave me a reply. I also contacted Megaspore and it seems they can’t answer my specific questions and advies me to consult my practisionner. UnfortunatelyI spend all
      my savings on my healing journey and ordered Megaspore bcz of all the promising results. Best regards Octavio from

    • Dear John,

      My name is Octavio (m, 46 years old) and I live in the Netherlands and have been looking for a suitable probiotic for the past 3 years. I have watched Dr. Mercola his youtube videos many times. In 2017 my body started to dry out slowly. First my eyes, then the swollen feeling in my throat and the minimal production of saliva. My mouth fell like sandpaper and I became intolerant of most food, smells, temperature changes. My body was attacked inside and out for 24 hours and no doctor took my problems seriously. Every night I was afraid of choking because I could barely swallow or breathe. The dryness and pain in my eyes got worse by the day and after eating certain food I immediately started developing blood blisters and dry spots in my mouth. After a year of searching, I came into contact with a medical dentist via via, she found extreme dehydration and histamine intolerance. Partly because of my hypersensitive intestines and poor digestion. I have been critically ill and have fought for my life several times in the past 3 years.
      A month ago I was on the point of opting for an expensive faecal transplant in a private clinic in London. This was strongly discouraged through me and I was made aware of Megasporebiotics. A probiotic based on spores instead of lactic acids. I have now taken the capsules for a month according to the instructions for use. The first week, I was sick and had bowel and stool problems. For weeks afterwards, the bloating remained in my stomach. Unfortunately, there are now also pimples visible in weeks 3 and 4. I honestly wonder if I now react hypersensitive to the Bacillus Licheniformis, which could possibly increase the histamine value in my body. My question to you is whether you are familiar with the possible side effects of Megasporebiotics and to what extent I unbalance my intestinal flora. Partly because I now take the two capsules a day for the 5th week and my stomach remains bloated 24/7, loose stools and pimples, I wonder whether this is part of the detoxification process or a histamine reaction? Via google I also read about the trace-based probiotic from Dr. Mercola and I wondered to what extent this probiotic is safe and whether you have experience with it, or perhaps recommend something else / Megaspore seems to work against the pain and dryness in my eyes, but I never had these stomach cramps before. I am distraught and have spent all my money in recent years on treatments, physicians, studies and supplements. I so hope you would like to help me further. I only eat organic, no gluten, no dairy or sugars and histamine limiting foods. I hope you would like and be able to help me further.

      Sincerely, Octavio
      the Netherlands

      ** Complete Spore Restore – DR. Mercola

      Bacillus clausii
      Pediococcus acidilactici
      Bacillus subtilis
      Bacillus coagulans

      ** Megaspore Biotics – Kiran Krishnan

      1. Bacillus Indicus
      2. Bacillus Subtilis
      3. Bacillus Licheniformis * histamine release? ( https://www.fixyourgut.com/why-i-do-not-recommend-megasporebiotic-a-review/4. Bacillus Coagulans )
      5. Bacillus Clausii

  2. John, I appreciate your views. I have learnt a lot. Thank-you!

    • I cant see where i can post here, so ive replied to a comment hoping that you (John Brisson) might answer my question…

      I had a test that showed I have high Bacillus spp (among other things). My doctor put me on MegaSporeBiotic. I don’t get the logic…if i’m high in Bacillus spp, how does a blend of 5 types of Bacillus help me?

  3. You can add me to the list of those who became ill on MSB. Had very good GI function until my Functional Medicine Dr thought that it would tweak my absorption of supplements designed to build new bone and help with my severe Osteoporosis. Disgusted that now my GI function (fast and loose for over five weeks) is a mess. My Dr has not helped me AT ALL. Answers messages in 4-5 days. Keeps asking what different foods I’ve eaten. Lots of $$ and labs…down the drain. I do credit the customer service Rep at Microbiome Labs who offered that it sounded like it was indeed the MSB that was causing this and it does happen when taking too quickly. I followed the directs from the bottle and Dr.

  4. Is there any Bacillus you are comfortable recommending, even the basic bacillus subtilis?

    What is your take on the Megaspore study showing the dramatic reduction in endotoxemia five hours after a high fat meal, for patients who took their spores for 30 days?

    • Need independent studies in my opinion: The present study was funded in part by a competitive research grant from Microbiome Labs, LLC (Glenview, IL) to the University of North Texas. The UNT team did not receive direct funding associated with the completion of the present study. The funding agency was not involved in the data collection, analysis, interpretation, and manuscript preparation. Double blind procedures and confidentially were used to conduct the present study in a sound and unbiased manner. As such, the authors report no conflict of interest associated with completing the present study.

      There is still a hint of bias even if it is intentional or implied when a company funds a study for a supplement.

      Dramatic is a also a stretch did you look at the data represented and the graphs. Yes, there was an reduction, but I would not call it dramatic, except for endotoxins. Should not the placebo been something other than rice flour? Purified water drops and say that are probiotic drops? Rice flour can trigger responses in certain people depending on their microbiome.

  5. Natural Vitamin K2-7 is very important for healthy life e.g. Bone health, Diabetes management and Muscle health etc.

    MenaquinGold is the most researched natural vitamin k2.

    This is properly explained in this page.


  6. I have 2 questions: Firstly, Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt endorses Bacillus (Spore-Based Probiotics). Have you seen his talks/work for example the one here: https://youtu.be/S_8penPDg6Q And what are your thoughts about it?

    Secondly, alternative to Spore-Based Probiotics (Bacillus Genus) or HSO as you mention, for traditional ones (Lactobacillus, Bifidobacterium, and Saccharomyces for example), have you done a similar review for products based on those? Please share link if you have. I am interested to also know product delivery method for small children who cannot swallow pills (usually which are enteric-coated to protect the strains which aren’t acid-resistant)as most probiotics will die in stomach acids so how to deliver them pass stomach and into intestines alive?

    Thank you,

  7. Bacillus HU36®, being a spore, offers advantages of better colonization and survival through the digestive track when compared to non-spore probiotic organisms; it also offers claims related to the most bioavailable form of antioxidants and carotenoids.

    More details:

  8. I am concerned that I am having an overgrowth of soil based probiotics. I started seeing a nutritionist in December after I had treated HPylori. I had treated it with Bio HPF, and I had had it 10 years ago. I also had some candida. I did a GI map that showed low immune function, so I was to build up my good gut bacteria with diet and Megaspore. Also other supplements. I still had some Hpylori, so something for that plus L Glutamine. Long story short, I was much worse, and I wasn’t sure which component made me worse. I left her to treat the HPylori myself. I then developed Sibo, or more severe sibo from the next recommended probiotic which was a multi-strain lactobacillus product. I was following your protocol for Sibo, but then bought Amy Meyers Sibo protocol plus Fodmap and did the Microb Clear but not the Primal Earth. I was doing better. I just decided to try the primal earth last weekend. I took it two days. I felt much worse. I now get bad belching and heartburn no matter what I eat. I am concerned the Primal Earth is in my small intestines, where it is not supposed to stay. I am trying to find a practitioner in my area. How do you get rid of a soil based probiotic overgrowth? I read somewhere that they had started supplementing with acidophilus. I don’t want to have to wait two weeks to do a Sibo test.

  9. Hi, what do you think about this ;-)



    • You, tell me?

      The present study was funded in part by a competitive research grant from Microbiome Labs, LLC (Glenview, IL) to the University of North Texas.

      • yes, it’s true, but I hope some honesty from the researchers ;-)

      • You conveniently left out key facts as stated in the study:

        “The present study was funded in part by a competitive research grant from Microbiome Labs, LLC (Glenview, IL, United States) to the University of North Texas. The UNT team did not receive direct funding associated with the completion of the present study. The funding agency was not involved in the data collection, analysis, interpretation, and manuscript preparation. Double blind procedures and confidentially were used to conduct the present study in a sound and unbiased manner. As such, the authors report no conflict of interest associated with completing the present study.”

        • Should not a study be performed without funding from the company trying to prove the supplement is effective? Your telling me that has no influence?

  10. I find that your “research” is mostly articles written by opinion-makers. It’s also a glaring conflict of interest that you’re selling a product on your website. I often warn people away from this kind of information gathering – teaching them to discern the difference between scientific research and simply reading anecdotal writings. I would encourage you to be more transparent and evidence-based in your offerings. You obviously have many people who read your opinion and that is a responsibility that should never be taken lightly.

    • You are 100% correct. I do not use any medical studies or books for my writing and I just link to blogs and opinions! Gotta love ScienceTM!

    • I am so glad I found this post. I don’t care about anyone’s credentials at the moment, I’m just happy to find an article that has a comment section where I can see real feedback on this product. I have been working with a functional medicine registered dietitian for over a year and a half. We have been working tirelessly through food and supplementation for that period of time to help fix my gut from many years of issues. I just completed a stool test 2 months ago and everything was looking good, I was feeling good, I had healthy regular stools. I put in the time and work and I was on a path to healing my gut.

      Then, on the recommendation of my practitioner I started taking Megasporebiotic on the 1st of June, 2019. She said, like all the reviews you find online, that she had great results with her clients. Within 2 days I developed constipation, which just got worse and worse. Not only that, I started to have die off, but I couldn’t eliminate so they just got worse. I started to develop bacterial acne on my face that would not go away, I started losing my eyebrows, I started having joint pain, especially in my wrists. I gained like 4 pounds, my stomach distended, with bloating (probably also from the constipation). Mind you, I only took this 3 1/2 weeks. I stopped taking it on June 27th just to make sure it was this product (I should not have doubted myself). Within 2 days I started to eliminate again, but by day 4 of being off this product I started having severe diarrhea, it has continued for a few days now. I have had what almost looks like some kind of lining in my stool, as well as so much mucus (I believe my intestinal lining is irritated, or I have an infection). My food is not digested when it comes out anymore. I feel horrible, and I am just outright sick – my stool has an awful smell. After all that work I did in the last year a a half, I’m hoping this doesn’t have a lasting affect on my microbiome. I feel completely defeated after all the work I put in. If you are sensitive to probiotics, I warn you against this product. Also, listen to your body, I knew about 10 days in that this was causing my constipation. I kept taking it because all of the glowing reviews about how it helped people and my practitioner’s recommendation.

      Thank you for providing a forum where people can share their experiences. I’ve read through all the comments, this product DOES NOT work for everyone. If you’re a practitioner, check in with your client after a week. Make sure you know how your recommendation is affecting them and if it is adversely, remove them immediately. I don’t fault my practitioner, it worked great for all her other clients, but no probiotic is one size fits all, microbiomes are so diverse, and so are people. Plus she is currently on maternity leave, so I was unable to reach her. I’m glad I just finally listened to my body and stopped this when I did.

      By the way, I also emailed Microbiome Labs to ask about this. I got some generic response about working with my health care provider.

      • Hello – Are you feeling better now? I am in the same boat as what you describe but had loose stools. Praying I get better – I have severe osteoporosis and I’m trying so hard to build bone with nutrition. My gut was fine before! Take care.

        • Hello Cathy,

          I am an alternative practitioner.

          Loose stools may occur in the beginning when introducing a probiotic that works against pathogenes. I also know such reactions from other probiotics than MegaSpore.

          Some pathogenes contain toxins in their membrane. If the pathogenes are falling apart the toxins are set free. The body reacts by bringing more water into the intestine to flush out the toxins as fast as possible. The result is loose tools.

          Your problem is quite well known and it does not mean that you might have harmed your gut. It can be a healing reaction.
          The dose of MegaSpore you chose probably was to high for your gut. You should start with a lower dose and perhaps add a toxin binder like zeolith, charcoal or something else.

          Then increase the dose step by step.

          Good luck!

          (I would only recommend MegaSpore if you have issues with your gut or a stool test shows problems like inflammation or dysbiosis. Problems might be there even if you have the impression everything is fine.)

      • Hello BH26,

        I started constipation and acne like you with initially. But then it was gone and I realized I could eat high foodmap food as well unlike past. But recently my stool returned to more reddish brown and I observed blood also :( I have UTI as well and the only suspicious is Megasporebiotic unfortunately.

  11. John, What probiotic do you take every day?

  12. I had a bad experience with Mega Spore Biotic. It was recomended for me due to my gastritis and after one week, indeed I had no more stomach burns. But unfortunately after 2 weeks it strated an extremely bad diarrhea. After one month of regime I’m not ok yet. So, for me, Mega Spor Biotic doesn’t function.

    • Then you need to back off on the dosage and increase incrementally.
      I’ve used mega spore and found it really helpful. I suggest you listen to some interviews with Kiran maybe through rebel health tribe to find out about why you need to start off with a small amount.

    • In the same boat… I hope you’re better!

  13. What do you feed your probiotics

  14. Is your recommendation GutPro is it truly a live bacteria?

  15. I wish everyone would stop feeding this troll. John – you have the scientific approach of a first year undergrad student, and just wish you would leave this topic alone. You may be convincing lay people who are impressed with any abstract you throw up, but those of us that are real scientists in this field look at your writings for the drivel that it is.

    • I thought I had the understanding of a 3 year old? Now it is of a first year undergrad, nice!

      • John, I understand that is not fun to be attacked, but your sarcastic reply does nothing for us looking for the bottom-line and the truth. I’d like to suggest you take the high road and amend your answer.

        • Eh, someone who is a troll gets a troll answer, in my opinion. I do not see an issue slinging mud, where there is mud to be slung. One of my main issues with our modern day. Not that I want to go back to it but remember when people dueled over a disagreement? I do not have issues with criticism but I do have issues with trolling for trolling sake. I will admit when I am wrong I have changed my stances many times depending on where the research is.

  16. I started mega sporebiotic along with benecell for the nucleotides. I also inlcude ADP-3 (organo). All of this along with others is intentional to get cancer under control, reduce inflammation, increase GSH levels through gluthathione (which is one of the greatest impact to automimmune, low levels) In less than 2 months: no pain in joints yet I have bone cancer secondary to metastatic breast cancer, all swelling out of the body, my lymphatic, adrenal, stomach, colon, liver all greatly impacted by chemo (the red devil) 4 years ago. Today: with gluthathione GSH impacting my good cells, with tumeric and turkey tail (had no idea that this study has been hiddend by the National Cancer Institute) along with the above: my bone cancer, located in shoulder, ribs, hips and lower back is ALL GONE! the Mega spore has made a significant impact with all the issues and most every disease starts from the gut. I don’t know what to say about the impact to others…but I am staying away from all RX’s and they are manufactured and transformed from the plants anyway, so I am going back to the plant directly

    • Wow Karne, that’s great news!! So happy for you. My husband will be undergoing Chemo so looking to purchase Megasporebiotic in additional to all of the other supplements he uses. I have not come across Benecell until now. Is there a certain manufacturer that you use?

      Thank you for your insight, always looking for help…

      • Search Results
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        What is BeneCell™ | ForeFront Equine
        https://www.forefrontequine.com › what-is-benecell
        What is BeneCell™. As one of the most researched ingredients for use in animal’s diets, BeneCell™ is well-documented for its overall efficacy. BeneCell™ is a …

    • Karen, I’m so happy for you!
      Did you work with a specific practitioner?
      If you see this and reply, please do so to my email; I’m aftaid I’d never wind up seeing it, if you just respond here. Susan@qicoach.com
      Please write Re: megaspore in subject line, so I know who it is. Thank you so much~
      Many blessings on your continued health!

    • Just wondering about the hidden study you mentioned in your comment… is it about the megasporbiotic or the turmeric and turkey tail?
      Thank you

  17. My acupuncturist takes this product and suggested that I give it a try. I have been taking MegaSporebiotics for about 4 months and I didn’t think it was possible for my digestion to improve but it has and my mood is excellent and my energy level has greatly improved. I also believe that it has improved my immune system as everyone around has been sick but I have remained very healthy. My experience with this product has only been positive.

  18. Hi. I’d been taking VSL#3 then came across an article on Sporebiotics which led me to Megasporebiotics. Unable to purchase it without a practitioner’s referral, I bought Just Thrive from the same makers as Megasporebiotics. I’ve been on it a couple of weeks and shortly after starting, developed what appears to be thrush – something I’ve never had and it’s yet to go away. I was told that perhaps the Just Thrive was clearing out all the candida that had built up in my system. Since reading this blog, I’ve put an order in for the VSL#3. I’m dealing with an autoimmune condition and I really don’t need to feel any worse than I already do.

    Thanks for the blog.

    • Sorry to hear that! But it’s called the die off and it’s not pleasant at times, I went through it as long as you keep a clean diet sleep, water , excersise ,stress levels and home environment your body will return back to balance.
      Educate your self on real food not junk food. Best to you!

    • Interesting that Just Thrive is made by the makers of Megasporbiotic. I happen to have both in my cabinet and notice that Just Thrive does not contain Bacillus Licheniformis as Megasporbiotic does. I cannot seem to take Megasporbiotic without getting GERD. Will be interesting to see if I have the same result with Just Thrive.

      • Nichole, did you have the same problem with Gerd from the Just Thrive product as you did with MegaSpore?

        I’m curious to know. Thank you.

        Please respond to


    • That was a good thing! You should have continued to try to get the candida out of you! I have a severe leaky gut from untreated candida!

    • Has VSL 3 been discontinued?
      While manufacturing of VSL#3 formulation has been discontinued in 2016, you can still find a probiotic VSL#3 in Europe. European formula is manufactured in Italy. However, do not be fooled. This probiotic manufactured in Italy has the same strains but different formulation.Jan 31, 2019

      • VSL3 is now Visbiome. Long story, but Visbiome is the old formula (well researched) of VSL3. VSL3 is currently different.

  19. I’m a 38 y.o. female. I had no issues before giving birth to my son. After that I have had dyshriodic exzema and random itchiness every day for 5 or so years. Certain foods make the rashes worse. I did have Hpylori, but it was treated and the doctors say it’s gone. I don’t want to use steroid creams anymore. I was considering Megaspore to heal my gut and hopefully stop the itching. Now I’m afraid to. What would you recommend instead?

    • Hi was just wondering if you purchased any probiotics and the rash had gone or improved? Thanks

      • Hi Nichola, I’m not sure if your comment was in response to mine, but if it was I updated below.

    • Update I’ve been trying megaspore but have had some kind of reaction.I started off with hald a cap every other day and increased gradually per the instructions. It caused sore lymph nodes and inside ears, really painful acne I’ve never experienced before, burning and bloating abdominal discomfort, rash Ive had before reappearing on my cheeks, and a rash I’ve never had on my chest, along with feeling tired. I stopped the megaspore and symptoms immediately stopped. Then I restarted it and symptoms came back immediately. I’d love for someone to explain to me if this is a detox reaction, or histamine intolerance, or other intolerance.

    • This sounds like mast cell activation/histamine intolerance.

      • Try huge dose of ginger to stabilize mast cells. I had hives for 3 days and nights ALL over my body after consuming fresh yeast pizza. The ginger worked when nothing else would.

  20. I took Megaspore (two times, half a capsule, with one day apart) and I’ve been having stomach flu-like symptoms now for a week. I wish I had found this information before I took it, because this is horrible and I feel worse every day.

    • It’s die-off not bad reaction to Megaspore!

    • You just need to ease into megs spore, it works really well if you do that. I definitely use it again myself. If you have to much your body can’t cope very well with all the probiotics especially.

      • After reading this article i am so afraid to go in megaspore! May you share your experience?

      • FYI I took just one pill and got the worst bloating ever – after that I waited for 10 days and started again at 1/16 pill every 3 days
        After 2 weeks I started being extremely sick: swollen lymph nodes, I couldn’t eat for almost a week, couldn’t digest anything, bloated like a pregnant women, terrible insomnia, anxiety, heart palpitation, joint pain…..
        it’s been almost 10 days without megaspore now and I am improving very very slowly… be careful cause it doesn’t work well for everyone even if you ease into it

        • Thank you for sharing this. I was encouraged to give this to my child by a doctor. I appreciate knowing even a gradual introduction can have negative consequences. I hope you are feeling better now.

  21. Kiran, I’m not sure what can be said to alleviate the concerns of those of us who found this discussion because we were in a fight for our lives with a spore-forming bacteria that was empowered by an antibiotic, in my case, clindamycin, was killed by an antibiotic – vancomycin, and then rose up again repeatedly. Yes, every time vancomycin killed it and every time it came back because it had hunkered down as a spore during the treatment. The last time it came back before my fecal transplant, was the worst. I’m talking about clostridium difficile, recurrent.

    I hear what you’re saying about the bacillus species – gram positive, doesn’t produce toxins, no cases worldwide – but you’re missing the simple argument that says I am introducing a spore-forming bacteria into my system which could be good if it’s always good but could be bad if it isn’t.

    It might help to validate our concerns, rather than argue specifics, because while it is true that c diff was killed by vancomycin and did not develop a work around strategy in my case, it’s also true that its work around strategy was the spore it formed to survive.

    With that said, I would love to take megaspore probiotic if it could help me with my remaining digestive issues and Hashimoto’s. Despite the c diff infection I suffered as a result of clindamycin creating an environment for c diff to wreak havoc, I did take an antibiotic to treat SIBO that developed as a result – xifaxan – when I read that it was activated in bile and deactivated in water, meaning its chances of impacting my colon negatively were reduced.

    A good argument acknowledges the validity of the other person’s concerns whether they are purely scientific or based on an experiential fight with a spore-forming bacteria that was out of control. It is hard to fight for information and knowledge when you’re sick. I appreciate the work you and your colleagues are doing.

    • Saccharomyces Boulardi is the helpful yeast that will take out C difficule. It is a good thing to take when you are taking any conventional antibiotic that also wipes out your natural microbiome. You can buy it as a supplement, and it is also in some Kombucha beverage varieties. Best of luck. ANY probiotic, including lactobacillus acidophilus, the seemingly safe and widely tested one, can overrun your microbiome if supplemented in high amounts, or taken in isolation and not balanced with other probiotics. (See Mommypotamus.com for an article on this.) We have to find a way to balance all the little critters that live inside our bodies. I agree. Mr. Brisson, author of the above article, stated that B licheniformis goes through our system all the time, so why is it not a problem then? Is it the amount? Or other cofactors? One other idea, is that maybe you should just take very very minute small amounts of an SBO or probiotic at a time, so that it doesn’t overrun your system all at once. See GAPS diet or the SCD diet to see ways to not overwhelm your body with foods or supplements it can’t handle at one time. It helps you find very simple to digest food that don’t feed the “bad” bacteria.

      • That’s exactly what happened to me. I take probiotics daily. I rotate the brands and the strains every couple of months.Two months ago I bought Dr Ohhira’s probiotics (original formula) and I admit that I did not check the specific strains. Well, I felt progressively worse and felt like I was having a flare-up of my Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (I’m usually symptom-free). I did a stool test after two months and found out that I had overgrowth of the very genus/strains used in this probiotics, particularly streptococcus and enterococcus faecelis. I only took 1/2 the dose daily too so I can’t imagine what would have happened if I had taken the full dose. There are hundreds of positive reviews for this product but clearly we are all different. I am now looking at taking other strains to balance it out but I’m not sure it will work. If anyone had that issue, please post, I’m gradually getting better but it’s been hell.

    • I read Candida overgrowth is a problem that causes many gut problems. What makes Candida so tough to destroy is it create spores! I read this in an article, which I did not bookmark. Therefore, if someone is using a product that contains or creates spores to destroy other spores, you’re playing Russian Roulette with your health. I’m just saying do your due diligence before swallowing anything. Alright!

  22. Also, I found this potential histamine reaction risk here: https://cfsremission.com/2015/10/24/megasporebiotic-preliminary-review/

  23. I just tried MegaSporeBiotic for 8 days, titrating up from the 1 pill every other day and have had to quit. The side effects were unbearable.

    Severe gut cramping/pain, muscle pain all over my body, couldn’t sleep, etc…

    I also gained 5 pounds and have really weird water retention (face swollen).

    I called MegaSporeBiotic and they said nobody has ever reported any negative reaction other than a couple days of loose stools.

    Based on some other comments here, that appears to be untrue. I have read elsewhere that although contrary to the intended purpose, this could be an ultra-inflammation response or a histamine elevation.

    I am typically very hypersensitive to all supplements, which is why I wanted to take this for my gut in the first place.

    I cannot recommend it at all!

    • Hi, I just want to share my bad reactions to Megaspore biotic too, which i didn’t wanted to believe until recently the same scenario just repeated. I have Hashimoto’s with still high antibodies. So my story with megaspore begin more than 1.5 years ago. I started megaspore 1 pill a day for a week and after full dose 2 pills a day. After around 2 weeks on it i suddenly developed very awful hives type rash on my face (on my cheekbones mostly, it looked just like Lupus) which would turn into super itchy eczema right under my eyes and it would last for around 1 month. Then it would go away for week or two and would come back again in very similar pattern. Rashes lasted for around 7 months and I was on megaspore for around 6 months. Reading so many amazing stories about megaspore I didn’t want to believe it was caused by it so I atributed my rashes to leaky gut, food intolerance (already on a strict paleo autoimmune diet!) and heat. After 6 months I had stopped megaspore since i didn’t see any benefit and around month later as i mentioned my rashes were gone completely for all the time (around 8 months) until now i strated using it again. After around month on megaspore this time I got the same hive type rash on my face which turned into eczema again…So this time I can’t ignore such an obvious fact that megaspore is causing it and there is no doubt about it. Unfortunatelly megaspore is not for everybody!

      • I’ve had a strange rash on my face for about four months now. Thought food reaction. Then nose foray reaction perhaps. Fungal? Dr told me try athletes cream in my face. Did that for two months. Would seem to help but not going away. Tried natural stuff. Tea tree and the like. I had been taking a new probiotic from my naturopath didn’t really research it. Trusted her. I just looked at it. Almost exact same as Megaspore with out the one piece that is being discussed/argued here. Hmmm. Could that if all things be causing the rash ?? K wait. I had the rash before she changed the probiotic I believe. So could not have been onset issue. I’m struggled to rid myself of this come and go face rash. Heat seems to make it flair!!

    • Paul said: “I called MegaSporeBiotic and they said nobody has ever reported any negative reaction other than a couple days of loose stools.”

      They’re clearly OUTRIGHT LYING. Bacillus subtilis hu58, one of the main strains in MegaSporebiotic, stays in the gut for at least TWENTY SEVEN DAYS, as noted in this study:


    • Hi, that is so untrue. They will lie and tell you there are no reported negative reactions to protect themselves and sales. I called in reported detox reactions so bad it led me to hospital. the day after i took it i started getting severe pain in my stomach and bladder and fever. figured it was detox fought through it, then i kept taking it in smaller doses and by the end of the week i developed an itchy rectum .it was so bad i couldnt sit down or driver. landed in the hospital. stopped probiotic never got those systems again but i swear ive never been the same since

  24. Thank you for this very informative post and comments. Nice to be able to find this level of discussion from googinge as I am considering which probiotics to use.

  25. John, would you recommend the http://thriveprobiotic.com/ingredients-just-thrive-probiotic/ as posted by another user. My nutritionist has recommended the MegaSpore as part of my Candida and gut dysbiosis protocol but I am too frightened to try it. I have awful depression and severe anxiety as it is. Could you advise me please as I am in a bad way

    • I had the same concerns and fears but after investigating more, and talking to my doctor and other actual experts that I know and trust, I gave megaspore a try. I just wish I had tried it earlier because it helped me tremendously. No more candida issue and even lifted my mood. I’m not sure if the author of this article has any clinical experience or actual credentials. I would trust your nutritionist.

      • Uh, the author has the best selling book on Amazon regarding digestive health and over 250 blogs on the subject. Stop worshiping at the false idol of “credentials” I’m glad megaspore helped you, but I’d say you might want to understand both sides of the argument. As you can read from the comments here, this product has hurt a lot of people.

        • Cory, it’s an e-book. WOW… 250 blog posts! That makes him an expert on everything microbiome related. Pfffff. John has the scientific rationale of a 3 year old.

          • These smart mouth remarks do not help anyone. Try putting on your big boy pants b4 you engage in any public forum. Or go get a tattoo. Same difference.

      • I agree with you!

    • Everybody’ has candida! You can’t kill it or else you die the point here is to bring it back into balance and sometimes it’s unpleasant because of the die off, took me years to regain my health after a dosage of antibiotics. The diet is super important and internal cleansing like the colon first and then reestablishing the gut flora. Many people have a severe candida over growth and don’t now it. One may have some symptoms while the other has major symptoms but the body is always striving for balance. Take care,

  26. I was contemplating getting these probiotics as I had heard of people who have had great results, but wanted to look at reviews. Some of the comments that the blogger has said are not completely correct. A lot of bacteria are opportunistic pathogens, not just B.licen, yes infections have been shown with this bacteria, but this is the case with many, including comensal E.coli. Bacterial spores tend to germinate in the intestinal tract, bacteria that tend to cause issues do so when there is a complete imbalance of the microflora in the tract, i.e. If the bacteria is over growing or out growing other microbes. The potential for a bacteria to be problematic is strain specific, and depends on the companion bacteria. It’s important that people are aware of what they ingest. But it is also important for persons not to scare people as well, whilst it maybe done out of good intent, there are people who have had success with this probiotic. These people may now feel scared, and there isn’t any reason to be. I really doubt that any company would use a known pathogenic strain, they’d be exposing their employees to too great a risk. It’s very easy to figure out the strain, any microbiologist can do it.

  27. Thrive Probiotics have the same strains minus the b.licheniformus


    • hello Jason, have you tried the Thrive. My nutritionist has recommended the MegaSporeBiotic but after reading about the Licheniformus I am not happy about trying it now. Considering the MegaSpore is supposed to be popular there is little on the net about it.

  28. So what do you suggest to take to heal the gut?

  29. Kiran: “…So in the spore form, it is IMPOSSIBLE for the bacteria to cause disease or even multiply. So there is a paradox to your logic. To say that its antibiotic resistance makes it hard to treat is wrong, because in its antibiotic resistant state, it cannot cause disease at all…”

    I see what you are saying, but doesn’t it give them the ability to “ride out” the antibiotic dosing period, then become vegetative?

    • Exactly my thoughts, too. That would mean that you’d have to take antibiotics constantly to keep the spores dormant, no?

      I am also curious as to why it is a practitioner sold/marketed product only – why is it not widely available if it’s so safe?

  30. Excellent discussions here. I personally use MegaSpore and recommend it to my clients. (I am a functional nutritionist with a master’s degree.) I have seen positive results and will continue to recommend it. I think it is important to always consult with a professional when using any supplement. It is equally important to have applicable testing done to guide protocol development.

  31. Great comments. After being on constant advil and oral steroids plus two doses of antibiotics in past two years, my stomach system has been destroyed. Off meds and now trying to reverse damage with a higher fiber diet along with colostrum and also mega sporebiotic. I will let everyone knows how it turns out.

  32. I take a probiotic with Bacillus coagulan, and have found it very well tolerated. What do you think of that strain?

  33. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/299538914_Identification_and_Pathogenic_Potential_of_Clinical_Bacillus_and_Paenibacillus_Isolates

    B. subtilis and B. lichenformis contain virulence related behaviors. Some strains of B. subtilis contain nheA virulence genes. Both B. licheniformis and B. subtilis can produce proteases. B. subtilis and B. lichenformis were found in non sterile body sites some in deep tissue.


    “In conclusion, the isolation of bacteria belonging to the Bacillus or Paenibacillus genera should not be disregarded and their identification performed, particularly when samples derive from patients in any preexisting disease condition or immunocompromised. In fact, despite these bacteria are commonly considered soil-related organisms, they are increasingly isolated from hospitalized patients and appear sufficiently equipped of virulence properties that can
    allow them to behave as pathogens/opportunistic pathogens for humans.”

  34. I suffer with autoimmune conditions and lupus. The past year I have been sick with strep infections and frequent colds and virus’. It has been exhausting. I have tried every supplement and detox/cleanse you can imagine. I have tried other probiotic’s and felt not a bit better. I eat clean, mostly organic fruits, veggies and even do lots of juicing.

    When I first started this probiotic I was hoping it would just improve my immune function so I could stop getting every virus my kids bring home! What really happened has been a wonderful surprise. From the lupus, over the past year, I have developed so much inflammation in my ankles and feet, that it is painful and difficult to walk. I tried everything to ease it, even special orthotics (which did nothing!). Within a day of taking this, the pain is completely gone! I mean I have no pain or swelling in my ankles and feet. I also went from having to get up to pee 3-4 times per night to not having to get up at all!

    Yes, I had increased bowel movements/borderline diarrhea for the first few days, but knew I could back off and slow down by taking half capsule..but stuck with it and by day 3, things settled down a bit. I am very thankful that this was suggested to me by my nutritionist. It has been life-changing. I know I will continue to heal every day in more ways than what I am already feeling.

  35. My teen daughter started taking this probiotic. Before taking this she had normal bowl movements. Two weeks after starting this ahe started getting diarrhea. Now she goes from diarrhea to constipation, back and forth. This is horrible! She is in the bathroom after every time she eats.This has been going on since July and here it is September. Wish she had never started taking them.I read your article after the damage had already been done.
    Thank you John for your information on mega sporebiotic.

  36. Would this probiotic megaspore work for helping reduce sever treatment-restistant depression and anxiety? I ask because I was leaning towards one that Dr Perlmutter suggests from Garden Life called Mood +. Also, my GI effects test from Genova stated that I am very deficient in lactobacillus and bafido species. And since there are soooooooooo many probiotics on the market, I am still torn as to which one would be right for me. I also have celiac disease. Any feedback on this would be so greatly appreciated, including from Kiran and any doctors on this thread that feel like chiming in. Thanks so much in advance for any input.

    • I brought my Genova labs to my new naturopath, I had undetectable lactobacillus as well even after supplementing with VSL#3 for months. My new doctor told me that lactobacillus doesn’t grow very well on lab cultures and that the test is not very good at detecting lactobacillus – when she was using the test, all of her patients would come back with low levels.Therefore I would take that result with a grain of salt. Bifido grows just fine, however.

      That being said, I have tried all sorts of probiotics and haven’t cured my fatigue or IBS yet. I think I will try naturally fermented foods next.

      • You doctor is correct about Lacto.

        • That explains why I was on VSL 1-2 packets a day for a few years and ON that developed Lymphocytic Colitis (LC). My stool culture only showed DNA for the Lacto, no actual growth (Genova). Last year, after diagnoses of LC, I changed to Megaspore and advanced to two daily. No improvement. I developed Autoimmune myositis and went off all supplements and started Autoimmune Paleo diet, with no improvementof my LC, so I gradually went back on supplements(including the megaspore) Now I’m on immune modulators for myositis (prednisone and methotrexate) :/ and wondering if this Megaspore is not such a good probiotic. Clinically, I have no problems with it. But maybe since I don’t notice any clinical improvement, I should stop? This is all very confusing.

      • The only thing that cured my decades of IBS was to go completely gluten free and completely dairy free. No trouble since then. Also, must supplement with adequate magnesium citrate to avoid constipation. I find I need about 600-800 mg. per day.

  37. The conversation is helpful. I have been on Megasporebiotic for 9 months and it has done wonders for me……within a week I was feeling better……Since I end up taking antibiotics every 6 months for one thing or another, it has keep my intestinal tract afloat midst the onslaught. Miracle drug as far as I am concerned….but yes, more studies, more research needed…..

  38. First let me state that I am just a customer who started taking Megaspore about 5 months ago and I would like to share my experience. From the very first day I took it, I had trouble with my right ear clogging and I would lose 50 to 80% of my hearing for short or long periods, from 20 minutes to 3 or 4 days at a time. Very distressing. Since I suffer from oxalate and histamine sensitivities, I figured another food sensitivity had crept in, namely salicylates and it was quite devastating to my already limited diet. So, for 5 months I cut the salicylates out of my diet, with very little success in controlling the problem. I also experienced depression with the clogged ear and an not sure if this was a direct response to Megaspore or an indirect response to the fact that I was partially deaf (ENT ruled out any hearing issues).

    1 week ago I decided to stop Megaspore out of desperation. I no longer experience a clogged right ear and I have added salicylates back into my diet with no noticeable reaction. A week isn’t a very long time, but so far my conclusion is that Megaspore didn’t agree with my system. I surely don’t understand the science behind this, but I do now understand that probiotics are very powerful and should be used with the understanding that things can go right and things can go wrong. I’m just thankful that at this point it appears that whatever went on in my gut wasn’t permanent and I can put this chapter in my fight to regain my health behind me.

    • Just my thoughts for you – This sounds like you may have an underlying systemic strep issue, that could be aggravated by probiotics. I would recommend testing for strep by old fashion active culture technique (vs the new strip test or ELISA strep antigen) then clearing/detoxing the strep before starting any probiotic regime. for my clients I recommend a homeopathic strep mix clearing (it clears 4 strains of strep in 8 – 12 weeks usually)

    • Gail,
      It’s been 3 yrs since you posted but I am interested in learning of your ear condition now. I share similar situation and curious if and how you overcame,
      Much Appreciated ~

  39. I have used this product – 2 bottles worth. at first I didn’t really notice anything happening either way, good or bad. I started out slow as per my health care person’s advice. I took one a day and sometimes forgot to take it on other days and ended up taking 2 a day when I remembered to do so. Then I ran out. Now I really feel a difference since it has been about 2 weeks without it. I am again full of sour stomach, and completely constipated all the time. I didn’t research this when I first started taking it because I was too ill, and now I found this article after searching where to buy it (since I left my former dr office). I am going to still use this product. I had no bad reactions that I can remember and I feel like crap while off of it. Too bad it’s only available through a small number of ways. Nothing else has ever helped me the way this megasporebiotic has. I am 50 years old and have lived a life with constant constipation and other symptoms. I am so glad to have found relief.

    • Me too, I feel absolutely wonderful on it. I no longer am constipated or have daily migraines that have plagued me for 35 years! It’s a miracle to me, and I wish it was easier to find.


  40. It could be a coincidence, but I’ve been experiencing ongoing, extreme abdominal distention and cramping since I started Megaspore Biotic. I never had digestive issues or bloating before, but now I look four months pregnant even though I’m pretty lean and fit. Now my husband has gotten the same stomach swelling even though he never took the probiotic. And although I stopped the probiotic weeks ago, neither of us is seeing any abdominal relief. Now I’m worried that I’ve populated my gut (and perhaps my husband’s) with a challenging bacteria. How do I clean it out and repopulate with flora that suit our biomes better?

    • I would consider getting a stool test like GI Effects to see if Bacillus did colonize your digestive tract and if so consider following the endospore eliminating protocol in my book if it appears it is causing you issues.

  41. Everyone, please do just a small amount of research/reading on the risk assessment of bacillus lichenformis from the EPA. https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-09/documents/fra005.pdf. You will see very quickly how much of the information in this particular article is just… wrong. Lichenformis is one of the better defined bacillus species, it is very easily distinguished when compared with other toxic, harmful bacillus species (and thus unlikely to be confused with those related species), it is not toxigenic, is not predisposed to cause infection, and is absolutely not related to food poisoning (in fact, B. cereus is the common cause of food poisoning). If you still feel uneasy, of course, you have every right to NOT use probiotics with this strand. Personally, I was researching MegasporeProbiotic to see if I should try it, and I am very glad I stumbled across this post. It is the only thing I found in my research that was slightly negative. I am not sure what the agenda of the blogger is, but for me, all of this information has given me more confidence in using the product. Again, read the risk assessment. It’s an easy read and quickly negates so many of this blogger’s points.

    • I linked many studies that show that Lichenformis causes infections and has been implicated in spoilage of food. You missed those however and instead linked a 1997 EPA report. Granted I linked this report as well but let us take time and examine what you have missed out of it:

      “Although it can grow over a wide range of temperatures including that of the human body (Claus and Berkeley, 1986), it is unlikely that this microorganism will colonize humans to any large degree. Contact with the microorganism, therefore, would generally be relegated to soil and other environmental sources.”

      “While there have been cases of acute, self-limited gastroenteritis associated with the isolation of large numbers of this species, a toxic or direct effect on intestinal epithelia has not been demonstrated.”

      “While not innocuous, B. licheniformis appears to have a very low degree of virulence.”

      “Due to its ubiquitous presence as spores in soil and dust, B. licheniformis is widely known as a contaminant of food (Norris et al., 1981). It is a common spoilage organism of milk (Mostert et al., 1979; Foschino et al., 1990), packaged meats (Bell and DeLacy, 1984), and some canned goods (Norris et al., 1981). However, it is typically not thought to be a causal agent of food poisoning. B. licheniformis. It has also been shown to be a contaminant of pharmaceutical tablets (Nandapurkar et al., 1985.)”

      “However, if challenged by large numbers of this microorganism, compromised individuals or those suffering from trauma may be infected.”

      So yes, the EPA report brings up some of the issues I had with the bacteria, and this was the information available to them in 1997.

    • Very nice to hear that since I have had amazing rests from it. Clear head, no bloating and gas pains from too much fiber went away like magic. Thanku

  42. Spore forming bacteria are essential to people who do not have the genes to maintain the gut flora. Spore forming bacteria will stay and work in a gut that is not properly “cared for” by genes. So I think is is very difficult to state a blanket fact of HSO’s work or do not work. They have helped me and have helped others. I can see where there may be no subjective proof for people with no trouble maintaining a healthy gut. That’s not me so I have to take probiotics twice a day and take different stains — mix them around — to get a variety. They then die in my gut, but the spores don’t and thus help control the bad bacteria.

  43. http://sciencelife.uchospitals.edu/2014/11/25/do-probiotics-work/

    We spoke to Stefano Guandalini, MD, Section Chief of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition and Medical Director of the Celiac Disease Center at the University of Chicago ….

    Q. Is a food product the best way to treat symptoms of IBS or IBD, or do you need a special preparation in a pill?

    A. The best way is to use specific strains that have been validated through clinical trials and published in peer-reviewed journals to show efficacy, and if possible reproduced by different groups using the same preparations. So the list of probiotics that have gone through this process is actually very short:

    • There is a product called Align, based on a specific Bifidobacterium, which is mostly for adults with IBS.

    • For infants and colicky babies there is some proof of effectiveness for a product called Biogaia, which has the bacterium Lactobacillus reuteri in it.

    • Then we have Culturelle with Lactobacillus GG, another one with a long record of scientific, well conducted studies, which has been found effective in treating diarrheal diseases.

    • Florastor, which contains a yeast [Saccharomyces boulardii] instead of bacteria, is also effective in treating and preventing antibiotic associated diarrhea. Children who get antibiotics often develop diarrhea, and in many cases that can be prevented by the use of Florastor.

    • Finally there is a preparation called VSL #3, which is a highly concentrated preparation of 8 different strains of probiotics. This has received a great deal of attention by the scientific world to treat a number of conditions. It seems to be effective for ulcerative colitis, both in adults and children, and it has been found effective in irritable bowel syndrome as well.

    Outside of this incredibly short list, however, there is nothing else. There is no other probiotic that has been found to be effective in rigorous, controlled clinical trials. This is not to say they aren’t working, it’s just to say we don’t have any scientific proof yet.

  44. A friend had a severe allergic reaction to the product and could not work for a week. The product may or may not benefit anyone. I see no peer-reviewed studies of the effectiveness of this product. I certainly would not use it as its dangers are un-researched, and its benefits largely touted by the vendor and its promoter / employee.

  45. Being board certified in clinical nutrition and functional medicine, I have worked with patients that have had gut issues for over 15 years. From my own clinical experience, Megaspore has had a profound positive effect on the majority of my patients. I’m not saying that I have not had positive outcomes with other probiotics, just not to this degree. Whether it’s IBS, Crohn’s or constipation, I have had excellent results using this product.

    • Googling, I see a chiropractor called William Scalise.
      Would be interested to know, doctor, where you practise.

      • Ram, if you turned up his name in a google search, certainly you should be able to see his address and contact info.

        As for your earlier comments, I found studies and research on the MegaSpore Biotic site. Also, there are studies for the individual strains found on Pubmed.

        I haven’t tried it yet myself but it looks like it makes sense. These are organisms that are in the soil, and thus on foods that man has eaten for thousands of years. They didn’t take them home and wash them in chlorinated water to kill the spores and germs, in fact probably used water from fresh streams, yet there were no ‘autoimmune’ diseases prior to 60-70 years ago.

        Just food for thought.

        • Incorrect, there were “autoimmune” diseases 60-70 years ago. Most “autoimmune” disorders are infections, people have had these different infections for centuries. Granted modern medicine is wrong in identifying these infections as autoimmune diseases, but it does not change the fact they existed.

          Water from streams would still remove soil bacteria and biofilms, it has nothing to do with chlorination.

          • Wrong. A simple washing in a stream would not come close to fully removing bacteria and definitely not biofilms without abrasive scrubbing. Even with toothbrushes and mouthwashes we can’t remove all dental bacteria and plaque (biofilms). Please do not make a silly assumption that stream washing would remove our exposure to soil organisms. They are ubiquitous…we have been exposed to them extensively and daily in our past as a whole.

          • So autoimmune conditions are NOT infections. Most autoimmune conditions are a genetic susceptibility and these genes are turned on by certain lifestyle circumstances. There has been a substantial and documented rise in autoimmune conditions in the past 30 years. Based on your answer to these questions I would take anything in this article regarding MegaSpore with a grain of salt.

          • Genetics and epigenetics do play a part in autoimmune conditions, but to say that certain overgrowths are not also related including Klebsiella and RA or AS and MAP in ulcerative colits and Crohn’s is ludicrous.

          • If autoimmune diseases are Infections, do you know how to heal me? I have Hashimoto’s and Sjogrens Syndrome. Interested to read your answer.

          • I would look into H. pylori or Citrobacter in the mouth as the cause of Sjogren’s Syndrome. Do you have any mercury amalgams or root canals? Did you have any teeth pulled? You might have caviations. Endotoxins from Gram negative can cause thyroid issues including Hashimoto’s.

          • “Water from streams would still remove soil bacteria” – John Brisson

            Sir, this is by far the most ignorant statement I have yet to cross in your silly ramblings. The stream itself will have ‘soil based bacteria’. SCIENCE. FAIL.

          • Do you understand that running water from a stream would have fewer microbes then stagnant water? Therefore, if you put a piece of freshly picked vegetable or fruit in the water of a clear stream, some of the dirt would be washed away reducing CFU’s. Do you know what CFU means or do you have to use Google? Yes, the water would have some CFU’s (unless it is directly from a spring source) more if it is contaminated, less if the water is purer. To make things safer for consumption is about lowering CFU’s and reducing what we know to be problematic. It is impossible to make what we eat and drink sterile. Why do people wash anything food related at all before we consume it? I mean by your recommendation anyone might as well eat carrots straight from the ground.

          • please explain how autoimmune diseases are infections?

          • Most autoimmune conditions are caused by certain dysbiotic flora. For example if you look into the literature ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease seem to be caused by Mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis dysbiosis. Other factors can trigger the dysbiosis like genetic polymorphism, heavy metals, environment, chronic uses of antibiotics, low vitamin D from lack of proper sunlight exposure, poor diet, etc.

    • I have been using Megaspore for about 7 months,
      In addition to Paleo diet and herbal protocol
      To rebalance gut bacteria. It wasn’t until I added in
      The Megaspore that my guts calmed down significantly- but not until after the initial war was over. The first two weeks was a battle of the bad guys vs megaspore. I am extremely sensitive to foods, herbs, probiotics and fermented foods. But I was able to tolerate Megaspore. I am now able to eata significantly more diverse diet which was difficult due to severe intolerance to many foods. I have added back avacado, onion, beets, asparagus, trout, eggs, green beans, butternut squash. I feel very blessed to have found this product and will continue to take it for at least another year just as insurance!

      • Lisa, Thanks for your reply. My practitioner just recommended Megaspore for me. I am very sensitive to things as well and have been battling gut issues off and on for some years now. I do my best to research things on my quest for good health so your input helped. Blessings to you!

        • Suzy, thank you for your positive words to Lisa. This product was just recommended to me by a professional, but a friend sent me to this site. Confusion can arise so quickly. I was so hoping to be optimistic about MegaSpore Biotics. My food sensitivity is insane and with three autoimmune conditions mounting over 24+ years, I was excited to think that starting with repairing my gut would be best. I can not let fear move in. Blessings and Good Health to You!

          • Catherine my daughter has had very good luck healing her gut an outrageous food allergies and food intolerances with butyrate (2 caps 3x per day), and suthrival colostrum. We have taken body bio brand Butyrate. After a bit of time you can then add liposomal glutathione. She can eat dairy again. She was egg, dairy, gluten, sugar free basically paleo. No shellfish. Last night she ate a piece of pizza. No bad reaction. Butyrate increases Tregs and teaches your body tolerance to food proteins. Many studies. Colostrum reduces TNF-a and IL6.

      • I started using this (Megasporebiotic) last summer and for me it has been no less than miraculous for me and my family. No other probiotic has worked as well. It is a keeper for me.

    • This is so encouraging! Thank you. Perhaps fermentation is an even better option in the form of live whole foods, but if dysbiosis is at the root of some cases of autoimmune thyroiditis and lichen sclerosis the product might be worth my while trying. Do you do skype consultations????

  46. It seems to me, if it was a legitimate product, they would just sell the product outright instead of hiding behind naturopaths who then persuade their own clients to buy it. Sounds fishy to me when the naturopaths are the ones doing the promoting of the product for the company hailing the product as the find of the century. Mass marketing at its finest. What a shame.

  47. MegaSporeBiotic got rid of my lifelong constipation almost immediately, and at age 65 that is quit an accomplishment. I also snort about an eighth of a capsule and my chronic sinus infection clears up. Someday I’m going to remember to try and snort it every day for a week and see if it gets rid of the sinus infection permanently. I just do it once and for a week or so–no sinus infection!

    • So how did it go Mary? Did you continue using it for sinus infections? I have both terrible chronic sinus issues and also constipation, so I look forward to your reply.

    • wow!
      please tell us more… and do do that trial… you have a nag nearly your age to account to now!!

    • I have added probiotic to Neil Med sinus rinse
      Easier than snorting powder…jim

  48. LOL at this thread. Kiran, thank you for absolutely demolishing this post. Amazing how someone who so obviously has zero formal training/science background or knowledge of microbiology can be so arrogant and condescending!

    I really, REALLY would love to see your credentials to be offering medical advice, John. Good lord. Scary. I appreciate that you’re trying to help people, but it’s really wildly irresponsible to do so without proper knowledge. And if you’ve convinced yourself that you do know enough – you may be the one who needs some form of treatment. You are disseminating straight up incorrect and misleading information.

    • Thank you for the kind words. Your comment really contributed to the discussion.

      • John,

        Your passive aggressive reply is to be expected. You sir, are about as knowledgeable as your typical GNC staffer.

        A word of advice for anyone trying to debate Mr Brisson: Arguing with an idiot is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter how good your argument is the pigeon is just going to knock over the pieces, crap on the board and strut around like it’s victorious.

        • Hey! I used to work for Vitamin Shoppe, we are a little more knowledgeable. Please, do not insult the hard working people at Vitamin Shoppe by comparing the two.

      • Hi John,

        There is a new spore-forming probotic on the market called “Just Thrive”. The company is based in Park Ridge, IL. Would you be able to give me any advice or advise whether or not you would recommend this product?

        Thank you kindly for your help.

    • I don’t see Kiran’s response?

      Please share it….

  49. interesting read in the comments section. thank you.

    yes monkeys wash their potatoes.
    they know as we know dirt is kind of crunchy.
    But washing a potato in a river does not get rid of all the bacteria. I live of my land and can say for sure I have ingested plenty of soil bacteria over the years. Highly recommended ;)

    great article…… great comments. I think these probiotics help a lot of people. and being skeptical and ask tough questions is great too.
    we are all here to learn.

    • We are talking not about ingesting trace amounts of bacteria. Little kids do that all the time, and it helps their immune systems. We are talking about purposefully bombarding the body with billions of bacteria every day, by swallowing capsules of the stuff.
      It may be that is the panacea for everything. But my money stays out of the MegaSpore co’s pockets.

  50. I have to agree with Kiran who is clearly taking an educated scientific approach to the discussion. As a physician and certified GAPS practitioner, I am currently taking Megaspore.

    • how are you getting on with it? do tell. i’m excited want to know more and might try it based on kind human ginuea pigs like you. gold star…. xx

  51. This is all very concerning to an average person who has been taking this very product, megasporebiotic for over a year! Very confusing

  52. Microorganisms have the potencial to be harmful or beneficial. It is all about balancing the microbiome. My life and happiness have been saved by Megaspore Biotics and I am waiting for more strains to come to the market. Please e-mail me when you have more probiotic strains.
    Adriana Ponzanelli

  53. As an Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner, CHEK Practitioner, and someone who has been working with clients directly for over 7 years, the spores in question here, more specifically Megaspore Biotic has been absolutely, hands-down, without question the most effective (only effective) probiotic supplement I’ve ever used in my practice. This is a hack job at its finest, and my only hope is that it doesn’t discourage people from seeking out a product that I’ve personally seen help hundreds of people over the last 6 months, myself, my fiancee, many family members, and dozens of clients included. This is akin to political attack ads. My only guess is that the poster is being paid by some competitor who is losing market share – and has no real knowledge on the subject. I hope you’re paid well.

    • I suspect the reason these spores helped when other probiotics did not is the fact that they’re spores: they are far more likely to arrive to the large intestine alive and ready to multiply than non-spore-forming bacteria, which may not survive stomach acid or may not even be alive when purchased by the consumer.

      I’m glad it helped for you and others, but I don’t understand how your experience makes you so sure there are no risks. Your argument seems to be, “this product worked for me and others, therefore it must be good for everyone and have no downsides, and anyone pointing out downsides must be a hack and paid off by competitors.” That is ridiculous and does not follow logically.

      • I have often wondered why people do not use their probiotics by ahem, the alternate route. You can take a little coconut oil warm it a bit until fluid add you probiotics by opening the capsules and stiring let it become solid, mold it into a bullet shape then freeze it for more firmness and use as a suppository. No stomach acid. Colonic delivery, no SIBO risk. Part of the reason orally you need billions (of the non-spore varieties) is because only 1% survive the trip.

        • Hi maddy, this is interesting…does the heat of coconut oil not kill some of the bacteria?

          • Coconut oil becomes liquid at 75 degrees F. If bacteria can live at body temp, 75 degrees is not a problem.

        • A single priobiotic enema made a huge difference for me. I had developed very bad reflux, palpitations, depression, insomnia and intolerance to oral probiotics. I developed a black tongue coating, fevers, severe diarrhea, insomnia, and slow transit constipation, losing 40 lbs in 6 months. According to stools tests, I had insufficiency dysbiosis, with several missing strains including no E. coli growth, plus a substantial Klebsiella overgrowth. My body was craving tubs of yogurt on a daily basis for months.

          I instituted the Specific Carbohydrate Diet for IBS, and some symptoms started to improve. However, the therapy that finally worked for me was a single probiotic enema which I made by culturing the best-tasting yogurt that my body seemed to be craving using the cleanest source of milk I could find. I cultured it for 24 hours to remove all the lactose. Also, since stool tests revealed I had no E. coli growth, I added the Nissile strain from Mutaflor. I broke apart 2 capsules of Mutaflor into coconut water and let it incubate for 6 hours. I cleaned out my colon with distilled water twice, and then inoculated my colon with 2 cups of the mixture.

          Using massage and inversion technique I ensured the mixture would get to my ascending colon, and then retained for 1 hour. The diarrhea stopped the next day. Within 3 days the black coating on my tongue disappeared completely. 1 week later, my bowel movements had become normal, well formed, and more complete than I’ve had in years. My GERD, IBS, and palpitations cleaned up, depression lifted, and yogurt cravings stopped. Lucky to say this therapy made a huge difference. Naturally, this mode of delivery repopulates the colon, but not the Small intestine, so it may not solve everything for everyone, but it’s worth discussing with your naturopath or functional medicine practitioner.

    • I too have found MegaSpore to the the absolute hands down best Probiotic to deal with Leaky Gut Syndrome. My Functional Medicine Doctor gave me the first bottle over a year ago, after switching me from another he was using. I trust MegaSpore.

    • i hope he’s not paid well and that he gives in gracefully. be careful what you wish for!! xxx

    • Michael, what is your website please? Also, what do you think about this article bc it also states NOT to take spore probiotics https://www.hyperbiotics.com/blogs/recent-articles/15994079-the-problem-with-soil-based-organisms-sbos-as-probiotics?fbclid=IwAR3oCc9scMCaM8UIT3uWVquE5Tss5qXQwex5u4QQIq49YQIEXIRjY3AIxHk

      Excerpt — SBOs are different because they were never supposed to be part of the gut microbiome. Supplementing with soil organisms (introducing foreign microbes) when your intestinal tract is not properly colonized with resident bacteria is like inviting a group of squatters over to a vacant home and crossing your fingers that it will all work out. To make matters worse, SBOs are spore forming and they proliferate rapidly – so rapidly, in fact, that many manufacturing facilities who grow the probiotic strains found in the human gut consider SBOs as a contaminant to their facility. They know that if they don’t take every precaution to keep them out, SBOs could take over and create a nightmare scenario.

  54. In keeping with fair and accurate information, I would like to refute several of your incorrect statements and assessments in the above blog. There is a lot, so this reply will be long. Your assessment of the safety of bacillus licheniformis is directly refuted by scientific publications including extensive work by the EPA. Your statements on the bacterial carotenoids are under researched as you have ignored a very substantial body of evidence. Lastly, your remarks on statements made in the Megaspore brochures are also incorrect and misleading. Details on each can be found below.

    First, its important to note that Megasporebiotic is not a HSO. Bacillus spores are now better characterized as transient, gut commensal organisms. Megaspore contains only bacillus spores. Hong et al 2009 correctly identified the gut as the true “home” for bacillus spores. They use the soil as a vector to transfer from host to host. They are not active species in the soil like true HSOs, they are not homeostatic. Megasporebiotic is not a HSO. This is the latest science.

    You say…”Bacillus species used in their supplement are the most widely researched and used in the world. This statement is grossly incorrect.” – In fact, this is not incorrect and certainly not “grossly incorrect”. There are currently more than a dozen prescription or OTC products marketed around the world through primary care that utilize strains found in MegaSpore. The strains found in the product are the most widely used and researched among bacillus.

    You say…”This statement is grossly incorrect. Bacillus is not a species of bacteria but a genus…” – We understand microbial taxonomy very well and in fact we have 6 microbiologists involved in MegaSpore. It is perfectly fine when grouping several species within a genus to refer to each of those species collectively under the genus name vs. naming each one. For example, Toyota is a make or car and corolla, camry, prius, etc. are models. If we are talking about several different models within Toyota, we can refer to them as “toyota models” vs. naming each one.

    You say ….”specifically states that Bacillus clausii is the most widely used “probiotic” drug in the world. That award should instead go to Lactobacillus acidophilus, which is found in the prescribed probiotic VSL.” – This statement is very inaccurate as the prescription drug Enterogermina marketed by Sanofi Aventis since 1958 is by far the most widely sold prescription probiotic in the world by any measure. This drug carries bacillus clausii. Enterogermina with Bacillus clausii is sold in over 33 different countries for over 60 years and is by far the most widely sold prescription probiotic ever. VSL does not even come close. Enterogermina is a drug sold by a multi-billion dollar, multinational drug company.

    All the work on bacillus Indicus HU36 and its ability to colonize and produce 7 of the most bio-available carotenoids was done by the large, European Colorspore Consortium project. This project included 8 different research institutes, 50 researchers and had over 5 million Euro of funding. The company that produces Megaspore did not do any of the work. It is all done by the most highly regarded research institutes in the world. I would encourage you to research this before you make statements like…”Production of poorly absorbed dietary carotenoid antioxidants in the large intestine would be a great thing if there were any science available outside of the MegaSpore website to back up this theory…” There is over 5 million Euro worth of research, dozens of publications and ALL of it is not from producers of MegaSpore. It is also not “theory” as it has been proven beyond any doubt. The studies also show that these are the most bio-available carotenoids and not “poorly absorbed” as you claim. I dont think you have the credentials to dispute the work of over 50 research scientists. I would encourage you to research the European Commission CORDIS site where you will find fascinating information on these novel strains: http://cordis.europa.eu/result/rcn/45515_en.html


    Your assessment of the safety of bacillus licheniformis is unfounded and does not follow scientific principal. In fact the examples of adverse reactions you use as evidence have been directly contradicted by other scientific publications, including a very extensive study by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). If we followed your rationale for concluding that licheniformis is not safe, we would have to designate over 98% of all probiotic products (including VSL) and all fermented foods, as unsafe for consumption. Please see my explanation below.

    We have taken a significant amount of precaution when considering the safety of the strains/species used in MegaSpore. We are microbiologists, doctors and researchers that have worked together to assemble this formulation and have utilized the highest standards of scientific rationale to include or exclude species.

    When considering the safety of a particular species for use in a probiotic product, you cannot utilize a handful of reported case studies as the basis for the safety determination. A handful of non-controlled case studies does not constitute a scientific conclusion as there are far too many variables to consider in each case. Safety conclusion can only be made based on in vivo, controlled safety trials that have all variables accounted for. This is true both with safety and efficacy. Just as we cannot claim or say with any measure of certainty that a strain or product helps with a particular disorder based on a handful of non-controlled case studies, we cannot determine the safety of a strain by the same. Each reported case has to be carefully evaluated and examined to determine if the species of concern is the true causative agent and if so, what are the outlying factors. Fortunately, there are several researchers that have done just this in the case of licheniformis. Published studies that have reviewed the reported cases of adverse events with licheniformis have concluded that in NONE of the cases it was determined that licheniformis was the causative agent. In addition, ALL reported cases were in severely immunocompromised individuals or individuals with trauma. Lastly, licheniformis was only associated with infection and never determined to be the cause of the infection as this species is not naturally infective. The most comprehensive safety review on licheniformis was done by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and they concluded, at the end of their detailed report, that “B. licheniformis is not a human pathogen nor is it toxigenic. It is unlikely to be confused with related species that are. However, if challenged by large numbers of this microorganism, compromised individuals or those suffering from trauma may be infected.”

    The EPA and other researchers have reviewed each case of reported illness and come to the conclusion that licheniformis could not be determined to be the causative agent in the case or simply present in the patient because the strain is widely found all over the environment. Nithya, et al infect performed a controlled, in vivo safety and toxicological study with licheniformis and found it to “safe for food industry applications.”

    Bacillus licheniformis is a GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) organism in the U.S. by the FDA standard for safety and toxicity of bacterial strains and it has QPS (Qualified Presumption of Safety) designation in the E.U. There isn’t a single case report where licheniformis was determined to be the primary causative agent in an infection and all case reports of adverse events are in subjects that are severely immunocompromised and/or had significant trauma.

    There is no scientific validity to the conclusions on licheniformis based on the case studies referenced above. In fact, based on your rationale, NO PROBIOTIC ON THE MARKET WOULD BE SAFE TO CONSUME. Your rationale is that because there are case reports of adverse events, infections or disease associated with licheniformis, it is conclusively determined to be unsafe, well, following this rationale, then lactobacillus is also unsafe and should not be consumed. This then eliminates virtually 98% of probiotic products on the market including most yogurts and fermented foods as there are dozens of published cases where probiotic lactobacillus species have been identified as the primary causative agent in serious illness. Lactobacillus species have been implicated in several serious diseases such as bacterial sepsis, bacterial endocarditis, pleuropulmonary infections, gastrointestinal abscesses, urinary tract infection, conjunctivitis, dental caries, and endometritis. There are literally dozens of reported cases of common probiotic strain of lactobacillus acidophilus, reuteri, rhamnosus, GG, etc. causing disease in humans. Thus, following his rationale, NO PROBIOTIC ON THE MARKET IS SAFE FOR CONSUMPTION. Unless you are willing to conclude that nobody should be taking any probiotic formulation or fermented food, you should consider changing your position on the safety of MegaSpore – this is the correct, scientifically sound thing to do. The EPA with all its resources and knowledge disagree with you.

    For your review, I have listed some of these publications below. As you will see, the adverse events with lactobacillus probiotics are extensive.


    Ø K Suresh Babu Naidu, Jamila K Adam, et al. The use of probiotics and safety concerns: A review
    African Journal of Microbiology Research, 2012.

    “Several reports have directly linked cases of Lactobacillus and other bacterial sepsis to the ingestion of probiotic supplements.”

    Ø Michael H. Land, MD, Kelly Rouster-Stevens, MD, et al. Lactobacillus Sepsis Associated With Probiotic Therapy , 2006
    “We describe 2 patients who received probiotic lactobacilli and subsequently developed bacteremia and sepsis attributable to Lactobacillus species.Molecular DNA fingerprinting analysis showed that the Lactobacillus strain isolated from blood samples was indistinguishable from the probiotic strain ingested by the patients.”

    Ø Kunz, Anjali N.; Noel, James M, et al. Two Cases of Lactobacillus Bacteremia During Probiotic Treatment of Short Gut Syndrome.
    Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition, 2004.

    “Although Lactobacillus generally is not considered a pathogen, it can cause disease in compromised hosts, including bacterial endocarditis, pleuropulmonary infections, gastrointestinal abscesses, urinary tract infection, conjunctivitis, dental caries, and endometritis. Lactobacillus bacteremia, presumably secondary to bacterial translocation from the gastrointestinal tract, has been reported in a patient with severe intestinal inflammation caused by ulcerative colitis… We report two cases of Lactobacillus GG sepsis occurring during the therapeutic use of this organism.”

    Ø Robert J Boyle, Roy M Robins-Browne, et al. Probiotic use in clinical practice.
    The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2006.

    “Several reports have directly linked cases of Lactobacillus and other bacterial sepsis to the ingestion of probiotic supplements.”

    Ø Thompson C, McCarter YS, et al. Lactobacillus acidophilus sepsis in a neonate.
    Journal of Perinatology , 2001.
    “Lactobacillus species are non-spore-forming, anaerobic, gram-positive rods that cause disease in immunocompromised adults. We present the case of a 2-month-old infant who apparently developed Lactobacillus acidophilus sepsis from an infected central venous catheter. “

    Ø Farina, Claudio M.D.; Arosio, Marco M.D, et al. Lactobacillus casei subsp. rhamnosus Sepsis in a Patient With Ulcerative Colitis.
    Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, 2001.
    “Lactobacillus casei subsp. rhamnosus was repeatedly isolated in the blood cultures of a 43-year-old woman with ulcerative colitis. Lactobacillus spp. could be considered a potential opportunistic pathogen whenever there is disruption of the physiologic architecture of the intestinal mucosa, such as in abdominal surgery, endoscopic procedures, or enteric pathologies. Clinicians and clinical microbiologists need to be aware of this infective complication in patients with ulcerative colitis.”

    Ø Suresh J. Antony, Charles W. Stratton, et al. Lactobacillus Bacteremia: Description of the Clinical Course in Adult Patients Without Endocarditis,
    Clinical Infectious Diseases, 1996.
    “The clinical courses of lactobacillus bacteremia without endocarditis in 43 previously described patients and 12 new patients were reviewed.Bacteremia with Lactobacillus alone occurred in 34 (62%) of the patients, and 12 (22%) of the patients had bacteremia with other organisms, including Lactobacillus. Lactobacillus was isolated from another site in 18 (33%) of these patients.”

    Ø P. Kochan, A. Chmielarczyk, et al. Lactobacillus rhamnosus administration causes sepsis in a cardiosurgical patient—is the time right to revise probiotic safety guidelines?
    Clinical Microbiology and Infection, 2011.

    “A 24-year-old female patient developed sepsis resulting from preoperative administration of probiotics following an aortic valve replacement. Blood cultures revealed the causative agent to be the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus, which has recently been implicated as an emerging aetiology of infection in those taking probiotics. …This and other reports show the importance of establishing generally recognized safety guidelines.”

    Ø Sherman ME, et al. An unusual case of splenic abscess and sepsis in an immunocompromised host.
    Am J Clin Pathol. 1987.

    “Although these organisms are usually innocuous, increasing numbers of serious infections attributable to these bacilli have recently been reported. The authors report an unusual case of a patient presenting with a splenic abscess and sepsis resulting from lactobacilli and review the literature describing serious infections caused by these organisms.”

    • First in a true act of transparency, it would have been nice to admit that you work for MegaSpore (if you do) since you used a lot of the wording alluding to it in your comment. I honestly doubt that you do work for them because your comment is filled with syntax errors.

      I have no problem with a counterpoint; that was why I posted your comment even If I disagree with you, but let us begin shall we?

      “First, its important to note that Megasporebiotic is not a HSO. Bacillus spores are now better characterized as transient, gut commensal organisms. Megaspore contains only bacillus spores. Hong et al 2009 correctly identified the gut as the true “home” for bacillus spores. They use the soil as a vector to transfer from host to host. They are not active species in the soil like true HSOs, they are not homeostatic. Megasporebiotic is not a HSO. This is the latest science.”

      You are somewhat correct about this. I use HSO a trendy term that many people use when talking about spore probiotics. Semantics, which are most of what my concerns in the marketing of the product and your counterpoint. You are correct that the spore forming bacteria are transient organisms, but you failed to mention that most spore bacteria like the Bacillus genus pass through the intestinal tract without activation in a healthy system. Most but all are not probiotic flora in our gut.

      “You say…”Bacillus species used in their supplement are the most widely researched and used in the world. This statement is grossly incorrect.” – In fact, this is not incorrect and certainly not “grossly incorrect”. There are currently more than a dozen prescription or OTC products marketed around the world through primary care that utilize strains found in MegaSpore. The strains found in the product are the most widely used and researched among bacillus.”

      You did not fully quote me here. You are correct out of the Bacillus strains the ones used in the supplement are some of the most widely researched strains. The brochure does not make that statement, however:

      “To date, the most researched and widely used probiotic strains are from the Bacillus species.”

      Incorrect, the most widely researched and used probiotic strains are from the Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium genus.


      “You say…”This statement is grossly incorrect. Bacillus is not a species of bacteria but a genus…” – We understand microbial taxonomy very well and in fact we have 6 microbiologists involved in MegaSpore. It is perfectly fine when grouping several species within a genus to refer to each of those species collectively under the genus name vs. naming each one. For example, Toyota is a make or car and corolla, camry, prius, etc. are models. If we are talking about several different models within Toyota, we can refer to them as “toyota models” vs. naming each one.”

      Semantics again. Bacillus is not a species of bacteria it is technically a genus. I am correct about it. Even if you group a bunch of Bacillus species together, it will still make it a genus because that is the definition of proper taxonomy classification.

      “You say ….”specifically states that Bacillus clausii is the most widely used “probiotic” drug in the world. That award should instead go to Lactobacillus acidophilus, which is found in the prescribed probiotic VSL.” – This statement is very inaccurate as the prescription drug Enterogermina marketed by Sanofi Aventis since 1958 is by far the most widely sold prescription probiotic in the world by any measure. This drug carries bacillus clausii. Enterogermina with Bacillus clausii is sold in over 33 different countries for over 60 years and is by far the most widely sold prescription probiotic ever. VSL does not even come close. Enterogermina is a drug sold by a multi-billion dollar, multinational drug company.”

      VSL is not the most widely prescribed probiotic drug in the world, BUT Lactobacillus acidophilus is prescribed by doctors the most for digestive issues at least in the United States / Canada. It is also prescribed in great numbers in Europe for digestive issues. Most people are also told by their doctors to ingest yogurt, which has Lactobacillus acidophilus. Enterogermina is not widely known in the United States or Canada. It is mainly an Italian and Indian prescribed “probiotic.” The probiotic is so widely used, in fact, the website used to it by Sanofi is only in Italian http://www.enterogermina.it/. Just because a multibillion-dollar drug company produces a product, does not mean it is widely prescribed everywhere.

      In that, regard E. coli nissle was one of the first discovered probiotics in the early 1900’s by the Germans. It has been used medicinally by German doctors since then. Therefore, if we are going by discovery, It has been studied since 1917 and used medically shortly after that.

      “All the work on bacillus Indicus HU36 and its ability to colonize and produce 7 of the most bio-available carotenoids was done by the large, European Colorspore Consortium project. This project included 8 different research institutes, 50 researchers and had over 5 million Euro of funding. The company that produces Megaspore did not do any of the work. It is all done by the most highly regarded research institutes in the world. I would encourage you to research this before you make statements like…”Production of poorly absorbed dietary carotenoid antioxidants in the large intestine would be a great thing if there were any science available outside of the MegaSpore website to back up this theory…” There is over 5 million Euro worth of research, dozens of publications and ALL of it is not from producers of MegaSpore. It is also not “theory” as it has been proven beyond any doubt. The studies also show that these are the most bio-available carotenoids and not “poorly absorbed” as you claim. I dont think you have the credentials to dispute the work of over 50 research scientists. I would encourage you to research the European Commission CORDIS site where you will find fascinating information on these novel strains: http://cordis.europa.eu/result/rcn/45515_en.html”

      There are no in vivo human studies that Bacillus indicus HU36 produces carotenoids in the gut or that the gut can absorb those that they produce. There is no doubt that the bacteria produce these carotenoids in vitro, but in vitro is not in vivo.

      The EPA risk assessment states:

      “While not innocuous, B. licheniformis appears to have a very low degree of virulence. It does not produce significant quantities of extracellular enzymes and other factors likely to predispose it to cause infection. The species has been isolated a number of times from human infections. The literature (cited below) suggests that there must be immunosuppression or trauma in order for infection with this species to occur. Farrar (1963) divided human infections by species of Bacillus into the following groups: (1) local infections of a closed space, such as the eye, in which the organism is inoculated in high numbers secondary to trauma, (2) mixed infections in which the species of Bacillus is found in the company of other organisms with higher virulence properties, and (3) disseminated infections, usually in profoundly immunosuppressed individuals, in which the species is recovered from multiple sites, usually including the blood stream.
      Reviews of Bacillus infections from several major hospitals have indicated the relative lack of virulence of B. licheniformis. For example, Ihde and Armstrong (1973) reviewed cases at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Hospital over a 6-1/2 year period. Unidentified species of Bacillus were isolated in twelve cases of infection, two of which were felt to be serious. Banerjee et al. (1988), reviewing all Bacillus bacteremia cases during a sixyear period from 1978 to 1986, found 18 febrile patients experiencing 24 episodes of bacteremia. B. licheniformis was isolated from one case. Of these 18 patients, 15 had lymphoma or leukemia and three had breast cancer. Nine of the patients had neutrophil counts of less than 1000. Seven of these patients had an indwelling Hickman catheter in place. Scanning and transmission electron microscopy from one of the Hickman catheters showed Bacillus organisms growing in a biofilm inside the Hickman catheter. By comparison, during the same period, there were 1,038 cases of bacteremia.
      In a review article, Logan (1988) reported several infections produced by B. licheniformis. One case was an ophthalmitis, a corneal ulcer, following trauma (Tabbara and Tarabay, 1979). Other cases included septicemia and bacteremia, and peritonitis with bacteremia in a patient with an upper small bowel perforation (Sugar and McCloskey, 1977). In the literature, there is also circumstantial evidence implicating B. licheniformis as a cause of food poisoning (Gilbert et al., 1981; Kramer et al., 1982). Fuchs et al. (1984) and Pessa et al. (1985) described Bacillus infections associated with intravenous catheters.
      In a 10 year review of records at the YaleNew Haven Hospital, B. licheniformis was isolated four times as a cause of infection (Edberg, 1992). In two patients the species was associated with eye trauma; in one patient it was associated with a silicone-based implant; and in the fourth patient it was associated with metastatic lung cancer.”

      Therefore, it does cause infections. You are correct that Lactobacillus causes infections any bacteria even those we consider to be “probiotic” can become opportunistic. It is a lot easier, however, to eliminate Lactobacillus compared to most endospore bacteria. That is the difference.

      I do not recommend probiotics even Lactobacillus without the acknowledgement that they can cause infection. People like you say B. licheniformis
      is perfectly safe but always bring up the infections associated with Lactobacillus, making it appear to be more dangerous.

      • John, plese post your credentials as you are positioning yourself as an expert in the field and are making treatment recommendations to people. To be fair to anyone who reads your blog, you should disclose what your field of education and expertise is so people have some background on you. The statements you are making are incorrect, argumentative and not substantive, thus my guess is that you are just a blogger and NOT schooled in science or research. But please clarify.

        I am happy to disclose that I work with Megaspore (I thought it was clear from the content of my comments), I am a microbiologist and a researcher in this field. I am currently involved in 4 different human clinical trial with spores and MegaSpore at Universities and medical practices. I lecture on the topic of the human microbiome at medical conferences over 20 times each year and I have worked in industry as a microbiologist for over 15 years. At Megaspore, we are making investments to advance the science of probiotics as we are seeing significant clinical benefits from the thousands of patients that use the product.

        We can argue semantics all day long, which seems to be your focus, but I will point out simple scientific fact here that are black and white with no gray area. These are facts that anyone well schooled in the science will be familiar with.

        1) The bacillus spores used in MegaSpore are human, gut commensal organisms that DO colonize and have a biphasic life-cycle. They are still transient because they spend about 21-27 days in the gut, but they do desporulate, they attach and they multiply in the gut. Again, they are transient, human, commensal organisms that use an environmental vector to gain exposure to the host. They belong in the gut and they perform very important functions to support digestive and immune health.

        2) All strains use in Megaspore are absolutely safe for human use and each strain is and has been used in human probiotics (both as prescriptions and OTC) for decades.

        3) The world is much bigger than the U.S. and Canada. The U.S. and Canada make up less than 5% of the the global population. Your statements about Enterogermina not being a widely sold product because it is not sold in the U.S. or Canada are completely juvenile. It is the longest running prescription probiotic sold in the world and the most widely distributed. This is a simple fact that you can research. There is no opinion here, it is simply a fact.

        4) Non-controlled, case studies do not prove or serve as proof for either safety or efficacy. I only brought up the numerous cases of illness due to lactobacillus, to make you aware of them and to point out that by your erroneous rationale, no probiotic on the market (supplement or food) is safe. I do not take the published case studies of lactobacillus infections as proof that they are unsafe, I have never said that in any lecture I have given or write up that I have done. Non-controlled case reports prove nothing. The fact that you used those as the basis for your “recommendation” has lead me to believe that you have no science or research background, thus I am curious to see what you post as you credentials. Anyone who has any science understanding at all would quickly and clearly see that those case reports you used as your unequivocal proof that the product is unsafe, are not at all supportive of your conclusions. It is very amateur to make a scientific conclusion based on isolated case reports with extenuating circumstances, especially when there are published reviews that contradict them (which of course you did you mention in your original, slanted post).

        5) There are in vivo studies on bacillus indicus that show that they do produce the carotenoids in the gut and that they are highly bioavailable and bioaccessible when compared to supplemental carotenoids. Please do your research before making such statements. In addition, if you had research experience, you would know that in certain cases in vitro is accepted as in vivo depending on the model system and the end-point being studied. A general, uninformed statement like “in vitro is not in vivo” would only come from someone with no research background or understanding. So you are wrong in this matter. Certain outcomes and end-points can ONLY be studied in vitro and depending on the model used, it is absolutely accepted as in vivo function.

        6) Megaspore is and has been used by thousands of health practitioners and doctors over the past 3 years with great success and with efficacy against a broad range of issues. It has changed people’s lives and we get those reports everyday from doctors and patients alike. We are making a difference out there and we have clinicals and unsolicited testimonials to support the importance of the product. The biggest shame about your erroneous write up is that there may be one person that reads it and decides not to try the product, where the product would likely have made the needed difference in their path to health and wellness. You are simply causing people to miss out on getting better in an attempt to sell an ebook or a coaching service. You know that nobody knows who you are and so you are trying to link your page to a popular search term to gain traffic.

        I presume that you have no education or experience in the field based on your write up and your conclusions as they are not reflective of someone who has knowledge and a background in science. I also presume that you have no experience with the product at all. I am sure you are not a practitioner or doctor who has had several patients try it and had adverse reactions. So with your lack of credentials and with no clinical experience with the product, I am VERY shocked that you would choose to specifically slander the product. That is very unprofessional, baseless and certainly defamatory. You are drawing conclusions on a product based on inconclusive, non-controlled case reports that are possibly associated with one of the strains in the product? How do you even know that the licheniformis strain we have in the product has direct correlation to the ones discussed in case reports? You have no basis for your conclusions on the product which leads me to question the validity of your recommendations in you ebook or you coaching business. With that in mind, I believe a scientific review of your ebook is in order, I would be happy to get that done if you sent me a copy.

        We have microbiologists and M.Ds on our scientific committee and advisory board. We also work with and have derived our strains from London University, where we work with a renowned team of microbiologists and biochemistry researchers who have dozens of scientific publications, text book authorships and scientific committee appointments on their CV. We are conducting human clinical trials in collaboration with Universities and doctors in the U.S. We have thousands of people from doctors, medical practices, health practitioners, etc. that routinely use the product with great success with no reported adverse events. The product has far more validation than you can ever imagine to have with the service you provide.

        I wish you luck in building this business of yours, but I would recommend that you do not try to gain exposure in the market by posting defamatory statements about a product you do not have any experience with or any credentials to support.

        • Kiran, I’m glad you’re engaging in this discussion, but it seems like you might be missing the larger argument against HSOs / spore-forming bacteria. It’s more based in logic than in statistically significant research results, so I don’t think credentials factor into this. It goes like this:

          First, as John showed, there are isolated incidents of serious infection from spore-forming bacteria. As you showed, there are also isolated incidents of serious infection from non-spore-forming bacteria such as Lactobacillus.

          Second, as John wrote and as is also claimed in your marketing material (and that of Enterogermina) Bacillus species are resistant to antibiotics in ways that non-spore-formers are not, by virtue of the fact that they form protective spores.

          Therefore, it’s safe to say that:

          A) Under the right, rare conditions, such as compromised immune system or puncture wound to the gut, any bacteria in the gut could become opportunistic or pathogenic. Including the bacteria already living in an individual who has never taken probiotics.

          B) Spore forming bacteria is more difficult to remove from our bodies in the event of an infection than non-spore-forming bacteria because spores are resistant to antibiotics.

          THE ARGUMENT: if (A) and (B) are both true, then we must logically conclude that the use of spore forming bacteria has more risk associated with it than the use of non-spore-forming bacteria.

          Now, it’s totally fair, and I think a very worthwhile discussion to try to figure out how much benefit patients might see from spore formers, vs just how low the risk is. After all, we’re talking something like untreated HIV/AIDs, or a car crash with a massive puncture wound to the gut. Most people don’t need to worry about these things in their lifetime, so most patients would probably view these risks as negligible and worth the benefit.

          But in the event of sepsis from a Bacillus genus bacteria, antibiotics are far less likely to work reliably than non-spore-forming bacteria. So I don’t think it’s fair to claim ANY bacteria is “totally safe,” and I do think it’s fair to say spore formers are “less safe in the event of a health crisis.”

          In fact, I would be in favor of a small disclaimer on all probiotics and fermented foods: “This product contains live cultures that can reproduce in the gut. In very rare cases of immune compromise or serious trauma, ANY bacteria in the gut can become pathogenic, even the bacteria you already host.” With an addendum for antibiotic resistant strains.

          As you can see, this argument doesn’t really have a lot to do with research. Since the odds of immune compromise or serious trauma are so low, you could have a study with 10,000 or 100,000 participants and not see a statistically significant risk associated with use of Bacillus genus bacteria, the same is true for years of real-world sales. But just because the odds are low does not mean that there is no chance for complication. Just as large studies cannot prove 100% safety, individual case studies do prove the possibility of slight risk. Scientists love to remove outliers from their data sets – it’s standard practice in statistical analyses – but I believe in health-related studies, edge-cases can be especially instructive.

          I’m glad these products are on the market because they may help many people. But I wish that consumers and doctors better understood that any “probiotic” can cause an infection in the right (wrong) circumstances, and some classes are harder to kill than others in that event. I think companies selling probiotics would do well to make that information more available, rather than claiming 100% safety for all consumers.

          In my case, I have reasonably good digestion, so I don’t take any probiotics. If that ever changes, I will exhaust the options for easy-to-kill Lactobacillus and other non-spore-formers before considering what I view as higher risk Bacillus species. It’s just good sense to try treatments that are easily reversible before switching to treatments that are harder to reverse.

          By the way, while I’ve read a lot of John’s work and interacted with him here and on online forums, I’ve never met him nor do I have a vested interest in his success. No credentials here, just a guy who’s interested in nutrition and health. While the semantics of calling Bacillus a species vs. a genus is a little silly, I do think it’s worth taking the time to be very specific with the Bacillus genus, since it includes nasty species anthracis (anthrax) and thuringiensis (BT toxin) unlike Lactobacillus and others, most of which are benign. I’d advocate the same specificity with Streptococcus, for example, one species of which ferments dairy, and another of which is a cause of pneumonia.

          • ACH – I do appreciate your moderation stance on this as I think your approach will help balance the discussion. But there is a significant flaw in both what you and John are saying about the increased risk and the logic used to arrive at that conclusion. I totally get what you are saying that since there is antibiotic resistance characteristics of bacillus spores, that should an infection occur, it would be harder to treat, thus it holds more risk than opportunistic lactobacillus. I can see how you would make that conclusion and how John arrived at that as well. However, there is a flaw in that conclusion that is evident if you study bacterial physiology and pathogenesis in detail, as I have. This is where logic is trumped by science.

            #1 – For antibiotic resistant pathogens, the drug resistance comes from harboring genes that afford the bacteria a work around, metabolically, in the presence of the antibiotic. For example, if an antibiotic is designed to disrupt a proton pump of staph to render it metabolically inactive and thus “killing it”, the staph bacteria can develop a mutated version of the proton pump that isn’t susceptible to that antibiotic inhibition. This way the bacteria can continue its metabolic life-cycle in the presence of that antibiotic, thus having resistance. Probiotic bacillus spores are not resistant to the presence of antibiotics in the same way. Their resistance comes from remaining in the spore form in the presence of the antibiotic. They have this unique ability to remain dormant for millions of years in the spore form. If they sense an antibiotic in the environment, they may choose to remain in the spore form and thus be protected from the antibiotic. The spore form however is a metabolically inactive form of the bacteria. It is not active, not multiplying, not producing energy, it is similar to a grain of sand. So in the spore form, it is IMPOSSIBLE for the bacteria to cause disease or even multiply. So there is a paradox to your logic. To say that its antibiotic resistance makes it hard to treat is wrong, because in its antibiotic resistant state, it cannot cause disease at all. A bacteria (any bacteria) has to be in active, vegetative form to cause disease as bacteria cause disease in 1 way and that is by producing toxins. The spore is a deliberate life-cycle form of bacillus that it goes into when the growth environment is not favorable. In the spore state, it is completely inert and doesn’t do anything, let alone cause disease.

            #2 – When bacillus is in vegetative form (the form required for it to even potentially cause disease) it is very sensitive to antibiotics. In fact, there are numerous publications on MIC data for bacillus probiotics and they are very sensitive to vancomycin, cipro, clindamycin, penicillin, clarithromycin, etc. There are literally dozens of antibiotics that can be used to kill, live active bacillus cells. So they are not any harder to kill than lactobacillus.

            #3 – true bacillus probiotics do not carry toxin genes, they are not toxigenic at all. They are also gram positive so they don’t contain LPS, which is required for septicemia via disseminated intravascular coagulopathy. The risk of them becoming opportunistic is lower than most species used as probiotics because they do not harbor toxin genes.

            #4 – There has never been a single publication on a case of untreatable, bacillus septicemia due to antibiotic resistance. Despite the huge prevalence of bacillus bacteriotherapy use in the world, there hasn’t been any reported cases of what you guys are saying is an increased risk of this genus.

            So, there is no more risk of bacillus probiotics causing opportunistic infection than any other probiotic used in the market today. The data is clear on that and I think you will agree with me on that.

            The issue of bacillus being harder to treat is also clear as live bacillus cells are very sensitive to a number of commonly used antibiotics. If the bacillus is going to be resistant, it is in its spore form and in spore form it isnt doing much of anything, let alone causing an opportunistic infection.

            I hope this is clear. In fact, when you consider all factors, bacillus probiotic species are safer than most other species used today.

          • I dont want to waste my time or money on other non effective supplements. Is Megaspore going help cleanse my candida for good?

  55. EXCELLENT RESEARCH – thank you for putting in the time to reveal this very important other side of the story. As above comment, after months of clinical use I saw no measurable clinical effect from any HSO and can not recommend them.

  56. I’m glad I read your articles on HSOs.
    I’ve been using prescript assist with no success. In fact its made my condition worse.

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