A New Way to Reduce Stress: Probiotics

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by Bened Life |

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Providing care and support for someone with a chronic health challenge comes with its own unique set of stresses. You may be juggling doctors’ appointments, timing multiple medications, and keeping on top of insurance paperwork in addition to a job and/or family responsibilities. And that’s on top of adapting to what your loved one can and can’t do on any given day.

You may have experimented with incorporating a variety of stress relievers into your daily routine, like healthy nutrition,1 adequate hydration,2 exercise,3 and regular sleep every day.4 While these techniques may help, it may be difficult to make time for them when you need them most.

Other approaches are regularly recommended, like spending time in nature,5 connecting with others in a meaningful way,6 or cultivating gratitude.7 However, these well-worn suggestions may come across as overly simplistic or time-consuming to you.

There is an option you may not have considered that can be both simple and effective: taking a daily stress-reducing probiotic supplement.*

Can probiotics help with stress?

Imagine your ability to handle stress as a bucket. Stress is like water that flows into your bucket each day. Your experience, biology, and personality influence the size of your bucket, so it is not necessarily the same size as someone else’s. While you might not be able to change its size just because you want to, you can take actions that help to empty it faster. Actions that serve as healthy coping strategies can help prevent an overflow of stress, reducing the chance of a burnout or blow-up.

You may feel that you start the day with a bucket that’s already quite full of water. This kind of stress requires a consistent stress-reduction strategy that’s easy to maintain on a daily basis.

But when you’re near your limit all the time, trying to reduce your stress can feel like just one more stressful thing you have to do.

If this is you, a probiotic for stress may provide a way to lower your “water level” without you having to do anything but open a bottle and take a capsule. In fact, that probiotic could give you the mental space to employ a wider array of stress-relieving practices. It may take the edge off your psychological stress in a simple, safe, and effective way, giving you more room in your bucket.

Neuralli probiotic

How do probiotics for stress work?

Most people associate the benefits of probiotics with supporting gut health rather than their response to stress. Interestingly, there are certain probiotic strains that affect the brain and how you cope with stress. They send signals from the gut to the brain via the gut-brain axis and lift your mood.*

An example is L. plantarum PS128. Preclinical studies show that PS128 probiotic bacteria changed the levels of dopamine and serotonin in certain regions of the brain.8 Dopamine and serotonin are sometimes called “happy hormones;” they are neurotransmitters whose signaling between brain cells contributes to mood and the response to psychological stress.9

HT-PS23 is another strain of good bacteria (in postbiotic form) that helps with stress. In a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical study, highly stressed nurses took 20 billion cells of HT-PS23 per day. Those who started with higher levels of stress reported increased job satisfaction. Just two little capsules, and their work day felt less stressful, even though the work was just as hard.10

And it was more than just a feeling – blood tests showed that the nurses’ stress hormone (cortisol) levels decreased after taking HT-PS23 for 8 weeks compared to those who took a placebo.10

Not just any probiotic strain can boost mood or help with stress and cortisol levels, which is why you should check the science behind your probiotics with care. It’s also why we recommend adding the mood-boosting PS128 and HT-PS23 strains to your day by taking Neuralli Mood.* Even if your gut is just fine, Neuralli Mood can help support a healthy psychological stress response.*

Refresh your stress management toolkit

There are certain fundamentals of good mental health that we should always strive to include in our daily routine. Plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables, getting plenty of sleep, and staying hydrated will always be beneficial. But adding a daily mood probiotic into the mix can go a long way towards relieving stress and helping you stay on top of things.

When days get extra stressful, sometimes your diet, your bedtime, and all your other stress-coping mechanisms go out the window. On those days, those two little capsules of Neuralli Mood could be the easy thing – maybe the only thing – you can still do to support your mental health, reduce cortisol, and keep your mood from going off the rails.* Try it and see!

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

This article is not intended as medical advice and is for informational purposes only. Bened Life does not provide professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult a health care professional regarding your health and whether any supplement or regimen is appropriate for your needs and circumstances.



  1. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-981-99-7652-2_25
  2. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/british-journal-of-nutrition/article/effects-of-hydration-status-on-cognitive-performance-and-mood/1210B6BE585E03C71A299C52B51B22F7
  3. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S016517811630909X
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4434546/
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5981243/
  6. https://www.cdc.gov/social-connectedness/about 
  7. https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/2019/03/practicing-gratitude
  8. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0006899315008628
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4449495/
  10. https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlehtml/2022/fo/d2fo01156e


About the author

NoelleNoelle Patno, Ph.D. is Chief Science Officer at Bened Life, makers of Neuralli Mood. She started her career after a B.S. in chemical engineering with honors and distinction from Stanford in the pharmaceutical and medical device world. Since completing her PhD in Molecular Metabolism and Nutrition from the University of Chicago, Dr. Patno has focused on dietary supplements and medical foods, with clinical prebiotic and probiotic research.