Where can I find live culture tablets?

Live cultures supplements do not generally come in tablet format; instead, you can find them in capsules or powders. Optibac offers a range of live cultures supplements in both capsule and powder formats.

If you are looking for good bacteria tablets in supplement form as opposed to in foods such as yoghurt, you have come to the right place. Here at Optibac, we specialise entirely in live culture supplements in the form of capsules and sachets. Our capsules are able to easily disintegrate, yet do not require enteric-coating.

Selection of medicines
A variety of supplements and medicines - tablets, 'pills' or capsules and 'softgels' or soft capsules

What is the difference between tablets and capsules?

Tablets and capsules are two very different things. Tablets are a small disc or cylinder of compressed solid substance. A capsule is a small case or container, typically round or cylindrical, which contains a substance inside.

Tablets are produced by the process of either dry or wet granulation, which involves compressing and compacting ingredients together using a two-stage process. The tablet is then usually coated to improve the taste and to make swallowing them easier, and pigment may be added to enhance the appearance of the tablet and to help identify the manufacturer. Excipients such as talc or silica are often used as lubricants in tablets. The manufacturing process of tablets enables many to be produced at one time, therefore reducing the cost of the product. Some tablets are available in chewable form, although in order to make the tablets chewable there may have been addition of sugar and other artificial flavours in order to help make them more palatable.

Capsules are either found in "soft" (for liquids) or "hard" form (for powders). Optibac capsules are made by the process of two-piece gel encapsulation. 'For your cholesterol' has both soft and hard capsules. The machinery required for the manufacturing process of capsules is thought to be more sophisticated than that of tablets.

Why not live culture tablets?

The majority of high quality friendly bacteria on the market tend to be available in capsules rather than tablets. In our experience it is tricky to formulate a live culture supplement tablet whilst retaining the best condition of the live cultures, as they are not well suited to the compression process. Tablets may also contain up to 50% of additional excipients as fillers to help bind them together, such as talc and silica, which the body may find difficult to break down. As a result you may lose much of the benefit of the active ingredients. Those with compromised digestion, e.g due to low stomach acid or a lack of digestive enzymes (see Probiotics Learning Lab for more glossary terms), may also struggle to digest tablets over capsules.

Our capsules are also more convenient than tablets for those who prefer their live cultures in powdered form, such as those who have trouble swallowing. They are easily pulled apart to be sprinkled into (room temperature) food and drinks.

Optibac 'For every day EXTRA Strength' capsule
The majority of the Optibac range comes in capsules as opposed to tablets

If your customers are looking for chewable tablets for children, you may be interested to discover that our children's supplement, 'For babies & children', is available in sachets. It is a tasteless powder and very easy to take, mixed into cooled liquids or food. Alternatively, the capsules can be opened and the contents mixed with cold foods or drinks.

For further reading, you might be interested to read our FAQ: At what time should I take live cultures?.

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