Bifidobacterium breve
Bifidobacterium breve


Bifidobacterium breve (B. breve) is a type of probiotic ("good" bacteria) that lives in the intestines. It produces lactic and acetic acid in the gut.

"Good" bacteria such as B. breve can help break down food, absorb nutrients, and fight off "bad" organisms that might cause diseases. B. breve is commonly found in the gut of breastfed infants and in the vagina.

People use B. breve for age-related decline in memory and thinking, blood infections, and many other purposes, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses. There is also no good evidence to support using B. breve for COVID-19.

Don't confuse B. breve with other probiotics, or with fermented food products such as fermented milk, kefir, or yogurt. These are not the same.
When taken by mouth: B. breve is likely safe. It's been used safely alone and together with other probiotics for up to one year. Some people might experience gas and bloating from probiotics, but B. breve seems to be well-tolerated.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if B. breve is safe to use while pregnant or breast-feeding. But there's no reason to expect safety concerns when used appropriately under medical supervision.

Children: B. breve is likely safe for most children when taken by mouth for up to one year. However, there isn't enough reliable information to know if B. breve is safe for very small premature infants. There have been cases of blood infection with B. breve in critically ill babies.

Weakened immune system: B breve has caused blood infections in a small number of people with weakened immune systems. If you have a weakened immune system, talk with your healthcare provider before taking B. breve.

Blockage in the intestines: B. breve has caused blood infections in a small number of infants who have had stomach surgery. Because the intestines became blocked, the bacteria might have crossed into the blood stream. Use cautiously or avoid in infants with blockages in the intestines.


NatMed Pro rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
  • Decline in memory and thinking skills that occurs normally with age. Taking B. breve by mouth doesn't seem to improve memory and thinking skills in older adults.
  • Blood infection (sepsis). Adding B. breve to infant formula doesn't prevent sepsis in premature babies.
There is interest in using B. breve for a number of other purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

In adults, B. breve has most often been taken by mouth alone or together with other probiotics in doses of up to 20 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) daily, for up to 6 weeks. In children, B. breve has most often been taken by mouth alone or together with other probiotics in doses of 200 million-2 billion CFUs daily for up to 8 weeks. Speak with a healthcare provider to find out what dose might be best for a specific condition.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

Antibiotic drugs

Interaction Rating=Moderate Be cautious with this combination.

B. breve is a type of friendly bacteria. Antibiotics are used to reduce harmful bacteria in the body. Taking antibiotics along with B. breve might reduce the effects of B. breve. To avoid this interaction, take B. breve products at least two hours before or after antibiotics.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

There are no known interactions with herbs and supplements.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.
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This monograph was last reviewed on 22/02/2023 11:00:00. Monographs are reviewed and/or updated multiple times per month and at least once per year.
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