Unify Health Labs Multi-GI 5 Reviews - Legit or Hype?
Medically Reviewed by Jason Reed, Pharm.D.
Unify Health Labs Multi-GI 5 is a powdered supplement that combines prebiotics, probiotics and gut-health ingredients they claim can give you more energy and cut down on gastrointestinal-related discomfort and food cravings.
The company was started by Randy Jackson, the former American Idol judge. Jackson lost more than 100 pounds after gastric bypass surgery and lifestyle change and is now on a mission to promote good health through a simple solution: one scoop of supplement a day.
If you’re struggling with a constant feeling of bloating, gas and constipation, then a supplement like this is a ray of hope. However, every supplement needs to come under scrutiny regarding its ingredients, claims and the scientific evidence that either supports or stymies those claims.
In our review of Multi-GI 5, we will examine how to take the supplement and how it works, what its ingredients are and the scientific evidence for those ingredients’ effectiveness, as well as how much the supplement cost and what Unify Health Labs’ return/guarantee policy is.
This supplement comes in a 6.8-ounce jar that contains 30 servings. Use the scoop in the jar to mix one scoop of supplement with 8 ounces of water each morning. You don’t have to take the supplement with food.
Each serving has three main groups of ingredients: Prebiotics, Probiotics, and GI Health
“Prebiotics” are typically fiber-based substances that provide food for “probiotics,” which are good bacteria and yeast living in your gut that contribute to your digestive and overall health. Your body can’t digest prebiotics, so you pass whatever prebiotics your probiotics don’t break down.
The GI group’s main ingredient, L-glutamine, is an amino acid that acts as a building block for muscle and other tissue.
Unify Health Labs says that these three ingredient groups can improve your gut health by reducing “gas, bloating and irregularity,” and increase your energy, focus, and cravings.
These claims fall within the common refrain of companies that sell gut-related probiotics. They leverage existing research into prebiotics, probiotics and gut-friendly ingredients.
Unify Health Labs doesn’t provide any information about the studies or prevailing research that backs up their claims. We examined the general medical consensus about the supplement’s ingredients to see if they support the claims that Unify makes.
For probiotics, we list the dosages you get for each strain in this supplement because even if a certain strain has benefits, you won’t experience them if there aren’t high enough dosages in each scoop.
We examined each of the supplement’s ingredient groups, providing research from reputable organizations and concluding with our observations about the groups’ overall effectiveness.
We sourced our information from reliable websites like the Micronutrient Information Center at Oregon State University’s Linus Pauling Institute, independent supplement researchers ConsumerLab.com and WebMD.
Fructo-oligosaccharides are a type of synthetic fiber that “share many of the characteristics of fiber present in plant foods,” the Linus Pauling Institute points out.
While it’s widely known that fructooligosaccharides are food for probiotics, how effective it can be in improving your digestive health is undecided. ConsumerLab.com’s analysis of multiple studies related to this ingredient reveals a myriad of inconclusive data.
We conclude that this ingredient most likely provides food for the probiotics in Multi-GI 5 but that you can’t expect any additional benefits from taking 4 grams of it on a daily basis.
Each one of the probiotics included in this supplement has some form of research that indicates they may be helpful to specific digestive issues.
However, to be effective, probiotics need a certain amount of “colony-forming units,” a measurement for the active number of bacteria colonies in one supplement serving. The general medical consensus is that your probiotic supplement should have at least 1 billion CFU’s to be effective.
The concentration level of Multi-GI 5’s probiotics are as follows:
- Lactobacillus gasseri: 900 million CFUs
- Bacillus coagulans: 441 million CFUs
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus: 2.45 billion CFUs
- Lactobacillus casei: 2.139 billion CFUs
- Lactobacillus plantarum: 1.2 billion CFUs
As you can see, the first two probiotics don’t have the suggested dosage to be effective but the last three probiotics do, with L. rhamnosus and L. casei doubling the recommended minimum amount.
L. rhamnosus has been used in multiple studies for conditions ranging from chronic constipation in children, and diarrhea to the presence of certain bad bacteria in people with kidney disease.
The bacteria were effective in reducing diarrhea and constipation in children and in chemotherapy patients. However, outside of that, ConsumerLab.com noted the probiotic had marginal or ineffective impacts on various conditions.
The evidence indicates lactobacillus rhamnosus is helpful for kids with diarrhea issues and cancer patients but, beyond that, there’s little evidence to suggest it will be consistently effective in treating your gut issues.
This probiotic strain has been tested extensively but only in combination with other probiotics.
The research we reviewed showed that the bacteria could be helpful for adults with constipation, diarrhea in infants and children, diarrhea resulting in a C-diff infection (common in hospitals and nursing homes), and abdominal pain, bloating and gas in kids.
The adult-related study of constipation showed promising results. Also, participants in that study took the probiotic in liquid form, just like Multi-GI 5.
However, the participants in the study were taking 6.5 billion CFU’s of L. casei, which is around 2.5 times what you’d get in one serving of Multi-GI 5.
According to research from ConsumerLab.com, L. plantarum has shown promise for patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
However, the evidence for its effectiveness outside of IBS is limited. Our medical advisor Dr. Jason Reed, PharmD, has pointed out, however, that an ingredient’s effectiveness with certain disease states doesn’t mean it will help people who are healthy.
This final group of ingredients is titled “GI health” but has several ingredients that aren’t related to your gu. Rather, they are often associated with Unify Health Labs’ claims their supplement can increase your energy and focus.
We will focus our analysis on L-glutamine, as it’s the highest-dosed ingredient and most relevant to your gut. The other ingredients come in dosages that aren’t effective based on guidelines for daily dosage.
L-glutamine has been tested for its effectiveness with a variety of gut issues.
ConsumerLab notes the results of those tests reflect “mixed results.” This tells us that the ingredient most likely won’t be effective for you simply because tests were done on people in very specific medical situations and the results were not conclusive.
Furthermore, the dosages suggested for treatments range from 3 g to 30 g while Multi-GI 5 has 200 mg per serving, which is about 15 times less than the recommended amount.
Based on our research, you may experience side effects common to probiotic supplements: gas and bloating are common.
Also, WebMD points out that L-glutamine may cause:
- Stomach pain
At the time of publishing, you could buy this supplement at the following price points:
- One jar: $69.95
- Three jars: $188.85
- Six jars: $353.70
Shipping is free.
If you aren’t happy with your supplements, you have 90 days from the day the supplements shipped from Unify’s fulfillment center to request a return. To do so, you need to call (800)935-4598.
The phone line is available from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST Monday through Friday and from 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. PST on Saturdays and Sundays.
Based on our research, we believe this supplement has the right base of ingredients to be effective but that low dosages and limited applications make it the right choice for a small segment of the population.
Going by the prevailing research, we believe this supplement may be helpful if you’re dealing with gastrointestinal issues related to irritable bowel syndrome and constipation.
The three lactobacillus strains in this supplement are found in high enough concentrations to be effective, per the general medical consensus.
However, if you don’t deal with constipation or irritable bowel syndrome, the evidence is clear enough to suggest this product won’t be noticeably helpful if you’re dealing with minor gut issues.
We see the most promise in this product coming from its Lactobacillus probiotic strains.
As such, we suggest reading through our beginner’s guide to probiotics. It provides a more in-depth analysis of probiotics, including a solid list of their health benefits, how to take them and what their side effects are.