All About Bonafide’s Vaginal Probiotic, Clairvee®

Mercey Livingston

Written by Mercey Livingston

Mercey Livingston

Written by Mercey Livingston

You've heard about the gut microbiome, but another lesser-known but equally vital ecosystem of bacteria you should be aware of is the vaginal microbiome. Just like the gut, the vagina contains an ecosystem of bacteria, yeast and fungi that are important for healthy functioning as well as for maintaining a balanced vaginal pH. Factors like hormonal birth control, antibiotics, or the onset of perimenopause and menopause can disrupt the microbiome, which can contribute to issues like recurrent vaginal infections.

This is why Bonafide has launched a probiotic supplement specifically targeting feminine health, Clairvee. Clairvee is a vaginal probiotic taken orally that has been formulated to target the disruption of the vaginal microbiome and the symptoms that may occur as a result, such as vaginal discomfort, itching and discharge.* 

The Benefits of Taking a Vaginal Probiotic

"The microbiome of the vagina, similar to other microbiomes in the body, is composed of multiple organisms that are in an incredibly well-orchestrated balance," says Dr. Alyssa Dweck, Bonafide's Chief Medical Officer. "There are many disruptors that women see on a day-to-day basis, regardless of whether they are pre, peri, or postmenopausal that can disrupt this biome and cause an imbalance of the typical flora."  Because women can encounter at least some microbiome disrupters every day, taking a probiotic for women, targeted to optimize the vaginal microbiome, can be extremely helpful for bringing more balance and preventing associated symptoms that disruptors can cause.

"Vaginal symptoms, including itching, irritation, discharge and odor, can suggest microbiome disruption. Taking a probiotic for women, that is specifically geared towards vaginal health can help maintain normal flora so women can minimize these symptoms, feel more comfortable and lessen infection recurrence," says Dr. Dweck.

Common Vaginal Microbiome Disruptors

In order to prevent symptoms like those described above and maintain good general vaginal health, it's important to understand the common environmental and natural disruptors that can have an impact on your feminine health. Below, we’ve outlined some common disruptors that could contribute to an imbalanced vaginal microbiome.

Oral Contraceptives

"Oral contraception can be a disruptor to the biome," says Dr. Dweck. This is because oral contraceptives alter the hormonal environment in the vagina which can contribute to an imbalance of the bacteria in the vaginal microbiome.

Antibiotics

Antibiotics are used to treat infections and other issues caused by harmful bacteria. But when you take antibiotics, oftentimes good bacteria are also wiped out. For this reason, antibiotics can disrupt the vaginal microbiome, which is why taking a vaginal probiotic during or after finishing a course of antibiotics can be helpful.

Perimenopause and Menopause

According to Dr. Dweck, hormonal changes experienced during the menopausal transition are also a microbiome disruptor. “Symptoms such as itching, discharge and odor might occur due to biome imbalance without a diagnosed infection," says Dr. Dweck.

How Clairvee is Different than Other Vaginal Probiotics

If you already have a probiotic sitting on your shelf, you may wonder why you need another probiotic or how Clairvee is different than a probiotic geared towards gut health.

First, Clairvee is a vaginal supplement formulated to replenish the good bacteria naturally found in the vagina that can become compromised from environmental disruptors and hormonal changes, like those that occur during menopause. It also helps prevent the overgrowth of bad bacteria, since that can lead to potential issues.

Probiotics on the market all contain a variety of different strains of bacteria that are studied to do different things. Clairvee strategically uses a blend of two strains of Lactobacilli bacteria, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus rhamnosus, that are specifically found in the vagina and are clinically shown to support women's feminine health as well as aid in maintaining the vagina’s natural defense system.*

What sets Clairvee apart from other vaginal probiotics, in addition to the specific targeted lactobacilli strains used to support vaginal health, is the dose. You'll find a dose of Clairvee contains 5 million colony forming units (CFUs), which is a standard dose, according to Dr. Dweck, as well as the dose used in clinical studies. She adds that even though you may find other vaginal probiotics for women with increased amounts, more is not always better.

Not only is the probiotic dose in Clairvee effective, but it's also thoroughly tested for safety.

"When you talk about the balance of the vaginal microbiome, you want to take the right amount of probiotic that's been clinically studied to be effective and not have side effects. And the dose that's in Clairvee has been clinically tested to be both safe and effective," says Jim Komorowski, Bonafide Chief Science Officer.

Lactoferrin and Folate Help Support Vaginal Health

Clairvee also contains lactoferrin and folic acid, two additional key ingredients that work synergistically with the probiotic strains. "Lactoferrin is a prebiotic; a peptide that is helpful in promoting the formation of a protective biofilm in the vaginal tissue. This biofilm aims to prevent bad bacteria from sticking to it," says Dr. Dweck. “This helps to prevent recurrence of infection." 

The folic acid found in Clairvee is not only a helpful vitamin booster, but it also supports the growth of good bacteria, specifically lactobacilli, according to Komorowski.

Probiotic Benefits That Build Over Time

One of the benefits of using Clairvee is that you don't have to take it every day to see results. In fact, Clairvee works best if you take the vaginal probiotic for 15 consecutive days per month. “When you change your vaginal microbiome, you want to do it gradually," says Komorowski. "And taking Clairvee for 15 days allows for that gradual, healthy change."

Studies show that the probiotic strains found in Clairvee continue to increase in the vagina for 7 days after taking the last dose.1 "Evidence suggest that these levels remain elevated throughout the month, even on ‘off’ days, until you start taking Clairvee again the next month," says Dr. Dweck.

How to Take Clairvee

In terms of timing, you can take Clairvee first thing in the morning if you like, with or without food. If you are taking an antibiotic, Dr. Dweck suggests taking Clairvee a few hours apart.  If you take other medications in the morning, wait about 30 minutes before taking Clairvee. While Clairvee is designed to support vaginal health, it is intended to be taken orally, once a day, for 15 days.

Who Should Use a Vaginal Probiotic, Like Clairvee?

Clairvee is a vaginal probiotic for women that has been clinically shown to help women with symptoms related to disruption of the vaginal microbiome.2 If you aren't sure what your symptoms may be or the cause, always discuss them with your healthcare provider and never attempt to self-treat or self-diagnose problems that require medical attention.  

Resources

  1. Russo R, Karadja E, De Seta F. Beneficial Microbes.2019;10(1): 19-26
  2. Russo R, Karadja E, De Seta F. Beneficial Microbes.2019;10(1): 19-26
  3. Russo R, Karadja E, De Seta F. Beneficial Microbes.2019;10(1): 19-26

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* 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.

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