Fermented milk containing Bifidobacterium lactis DN-173 010 improved self-reported digestive comfort amongst a general population of adults. A randomized, open-label, controlled, pilot study

J Dig Dis. 2009 Feb;10(1):61-70. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-2980.2008.00366.x.


Aim: Some probiotics improve digestive comfort of people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, but this needs confirmation in a healthy population. The objective of this pilot study was to investigate the effect of consuming fermented milk containing the probiotics Bifidobacterium lactis DN-173010 and yoghourt strains (test product) on digestive comfort and symptoms amongst adults without diagnosed gastrointestinal disorders.

Methods: The study was designed to approximate a real-life situation, by using a branded product in the intervention groups. In an open-label, randomized, controlled trial, 371 adults reporting digestive discomfort were randomized into three groups who had a daily consumption of either one or two pots of test product over 2 weeks, or to follow their usual diet. Digestive comfort and bother from digestive symptoms were assessed by questionnaire at baseline and follow-up (per protocol population n = 360). Self-reported change in digestive comfort and computed change between baseline and follow-up for each of 20 items were compared between groups (Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test).

Results: A higher percentage of participants consuming the test product reported improved digestive comfort (1-pot group 82.5%; 2-pot group 84.3%), than controls (2.9%). Their self-reported change scores differed significantly (P < 0.001). For both test product groups, almost all symptom scores improved significantly more than controls (P < 0.001). There were no significant differences between 1-pot and 2-pot groups.

Conclusions: This pilot study shows that daily consumption of a probiotic food in real-life conditions may be useful in improving digestive comfort and symptom experience of adults from general population. Further double-blind randomized controlled studies are required to confirm these health benefits.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Bifidobacterium*
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / diet therapy*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pilot Projects
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use*
  • Yogurt / microbiology*
  • Young Adult


  • Gastrointestinal Agents