Welcome to my best at-home gut health tests for a healthy gut microbiome!
- Quick Summary of the Top At-Home Microbiome Gut Health Tests
- What Exactly Is The Gut?
- Explanation and Importance of “Gut Health”
- How to Take Care of Your Gut Microbiome
- How to Choose the Best At-Home Gut Microbiome Test
- Final Verdict: Which Gut Health Test Do We Recommend?
Telehealth has been rising in popularity since 2019 for obvious reasons in our health care systems across the world, and has been called a transformation by Oxford Academic. Virtual care and at-home health tests have since been proven to be a major need and provides a wonderful opportunity for both direct-to-consumer telehealth service providers and consumers who need care from home.
Perhaps our overall wellness has been a change of focus in recent times, or better yet (I’ll keep it real here) it’s flat out more convenient to get care or tested online from the comfort of our own homes than to have to drive to the doctor’s office, wait in an infested waiting room, cough up the co-pay and getting told the obvious after waiting nearly 30 minutes just to get seen.
With inflation spiking and health care systems at maximum capacity due to closing what were open floors, health care insurance is now at an all time high and it’s just that much harder setting up a doctor appointment.
Well, not online… it’s actually pretty darn easy.
And, if you’re looking to get a gut health check for a healthier gut microbiome, it’s now easier and more affordable than ever before.
As a registered dietician, I’m constantly helping my clients improve their gut health through adopting healthier foods that promote it, such as antioxidants, for example. But, sometimes the first step is to actually get a gut health check to find out if there’s anything wrong, or, if you’re doing things right. It can be a harsh reality check for some, and for others it can be a sigh of relief and a confidence booster.
Just how important is it to have a healthy gut microbiome? Well, your gut’s microbiome plays a key role in many aspects of your health, such as:
- It affects your immune system
- It’s active in fighting pathogens
- Contributes to vitamin synthesis
- Helps you stay at a healthy weight
In this article, I’m going to be sharing the best at-home tests for gut microbiome health checks that are most effective, as well as the importance of a healthy gut and how to choose the right one that best suits you.
Quick Summary of the Top At-Home Microbiome Gut Health Tests
Gut microbiome test kits differ from each other when it comes to price and what’s included with the test. For example, some have personalized food and probiotics (even prebiotics) post tests, while others just give you the test results. In this list, I’m giving you the top five gut microbiome test kits with their corresponding pros and cons to help you make a great choice.
|At-Home Gut Test
|Ombre (previously thryve)
Viome gut health test also has a unique approach to a healthier gut microbiome, offering more than just a test. Like Ombre, Viome also has personalized food and supplement recommendations based on your gut microbiome health test results.
Viome’s mission is very simple, but also effective. They want to “bring your body and gut microbiome back into balance.” Something I can definitely stand behind. Viome's gut intelligence test is best for utilizing AI and RNA sequencing to identify species of bacteria, viruses, parasites and yeast, to gain a complete understanding into a person’s gut microbiome. It’s a very sophisticated test designed to get to the bottom of poor gut health.
Currently, Viome has two specific tests:
The Health Intelligence Test: For gut and cellular health, $179
The personalized supplements and food recommendations with this product supports:
- Gut Microbiome Health
- Cellular Health
- Immune System Health
- Stress Response Health
- Mitochondrial Health
- Biological Age
The Gut Intelligence Test: For gut health, $79
The personalized supplements and food recommendation with this product supports:
- Gut Microbiome Health
Many of Viome’s customers report improvements in:
- Stomach Pain
- Low Energy
- Brain Fog
- Trouble Sleeping
- Very sophisticated testing kit
- Excellent customer support
- Also leaders in gut microbiome testing
- Personalized nutrition and supplement plans, if you choose that plan
- Easy process
- Could be a little too much information with its sophisticated testing
#2: Ombre (Thryve) Gut Health Test
Ombre’s gut health test (read review of ombre gut health test) is more than just testing. In fact, they can match you up with personalized probiotics and food recommendations that are designed to support your immune system. Their microbiome test provides accurate insights into your bacteria, then you’re able to see personalized recommendations after their ISO-certified lab results come back. These reasons alone make Ombre the best gut health test on our list.
At the core of Ombre, their mission is to help improve quality of life for those dealing with chronic illness. They are leaders in the industry and rely heavily on science and continue to research gut health (over 36,000 indexed microbiome research articles to date).
The gut health program at Ombre analyzes poop to target the good and bad bacteria in your gut so it can treat the root cause of your symptoms.
There are three pricing plans and all are super valuable and affordable. You can choose:
|Ombre gut Test
|Gut Health Test:
|Gut Health Test + 1x Probiotic (subscription):
|Gut Health Test +3x Probiotic (subscription):
- Available for just the test, if that’s what you’re after
- Personalized food and probiotic subscription plan, if you choose that pricing model
- Researched and published over 36,000 microbiome articles (leading the charge in gut health with all the data they have accumulated)
- Scientific board team, heavily respected in their fields of study
- Outstanding customer service
- Very simple process to get started
Could be too simple of a test for some
THORNE has gained positive momentum with their gut health test, which gives you a deep analysis and a personalized wellness plan targeting your GI discomfort. Basically, you get the test, and they come up with a complete wellness optimization plan. Just like the other at-home gut health tests, they take a sample of your stool.
Overall, THORNE's a wonderful wellness brand (and they offer more than just gut health tests). Start shopping their website, and you'll see what I'm talking about – they are blowing up!
If you’re more familiar with Onegevity’s GutBio, that’s because THORNE and Onegevity teamed up and called their test GutBio™. The test can identify and quantify bacteria, fungi, viruses, yeast, parasites and archaea. In addition, it can show you levels of healthy gut bacteria.
- Customer feedback is very positive
- People love the personalized wellness plan that targets your GI discomfort
- Very sophisticated gut test
- They offer a full line of gut health products and supplements (even for children)
- Professional website
- Very new and catching up to the big names mentioned, but they have amazing customer feedback
To be in our top at-home gut health tests, you have to be pretty darn good, and BIOHM is one of the leading telehealth brands that specializes in at-home test-your-gut kits. The cool thing with BIOHM, like the other top 2 on this list, is that after you get your testing results back, you receive actionable recommendations on how to support your digestive health.
BIOHM has been doing gut microbiome health tests for a significant amount of time, and was one of the first brands in the wellness sector that offered such a service. They have plenty of customer reviews that speak very highly of the product, providing influential social proof.
The main difference with BIOHM is that you can choose between:
The Gut Test Kit + Written Recommendations
The Gut Test Kit + Live Consult
So, in essence, you’re still getting a “personalized” plan moving forward. Overall, a good product, but not the best.
- The live consult is different and unique, if that’s what you like
- Have been around the gut microbiome world for a long time
- Great company, expanding
- Easy testing kit
- Great for those who just want written recommendations and then go find the products yourself after the test
- Sort of personalized
Floré is another telehealth brand that offers personalized probiotics after you take their gut microbiome test kit. So, if you’re experiencing abdominal pain, constipation, bloating leaky gut, SIBO, or other digestive issues, Floré can be a great option for you.
The Floré gut health test can detect over 23,000 microbes in your gut, including bacteria, yeast, parasites, fungus and viruses. With their use of whole genome sequencing technology, Floré test can detect these down to the strain level, which is pretty incredible to say the least.
- Good customer feedback so far
- Reasonably priced
- Personalized probiotic plan after testing results come back
- HQ and certified lab testing facility
- Another newer telehealth brand that specializes in gut microbiome testing
What Exactly Is The Gut?
The gut (gastrointestinal tract) is a long tube that starts at the mouth and ends at the anus (the back passage). It’s responsible for making sure our body is in working order. When it breaks down the foods we eat, our gut absorbs nutrients that our body needs in order to function properly. This can be from hormone balance to energy production to toxin and waste elimination.
Where is the gut found?
According to patient’s article on the digestive system, the mouth is the first part of the gut, also known as the gastrointestinal tract. What happens is when we eat, the food passes down the gullet, then into the stomach and then into the small intestine. There’s a lot that goes into the rest of the digestion process (I encourage you to read that whole article), but in essence the small intestine is the place where food is absorbed and digested into the bloodstream.
Explanation and Importance of “Gut Health”
“Gut health,” in its simplest form, describes the function and equilibrium of bacteria of the complexity of the gastrointestinal tract. The health department of UC Davis points out that these organs play a key role in working together to digest food and get rid of waste without discomfort:
Why Pay Attention to it?
Only a healthy digestive system can make it possible for all food to be broken down in the gut to a simple form that can enter the bloodstream and provide the nutrients our body needs. A healthy gut contains healthy bacteria. It also has strong immune cells that fight off infectious agents such as bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses. To go a step further as to why it’s important, a healthy gut communicates with the brain through hormones and nerves, which maintains overall wellness and general health.
What Are The Symptoms of Gut Health Problems?
Here are the common signs an unhealthy gut:
- Upset stomach
- Weight changes – weight gain or loss without even trying
- Increased stress
- Constant fatigue
- Sleep problems
- Irritation of the skin
- Autoimmune conditions
- Intolerances of foods
- Sugar cravings
Benefits of Good Gut Health
- Weight loss
How to Take Care of Your Gut Microbiome
There are some key steps to keep your gut microbiome healthy, and ways to get back on track. I'm constantly helping my clients create a solid plan that helps the digestive system, so let's take a closer look from an expert's point of view.
Check / Test for Food Intolerances or Other Potential Gut Health Problems
The good news is that this list gives you the opportunity to take a gut microbiome health test from reputable telehealth brands. If you have symptoms of bloating, cramping, nausea, fatigue, diarrhea, rashes, and acid reflux, you should strongly consider taking a test to see if you have any food intolerances.
Take a Prebiotic or Probiotic
I’ve touched on this in our top five list a bunch, but it’s important to note that adding a prebiotic or probiotic supplement to your diet could be a good way to improve your gut health. What’s even better, is when it’s personalized after taking a gut health test.
Follow a proven Nutrition plan
Start eating foods that are high in fiber and antioxidants. There have been numerous scientific studies that show how foods that are high in fiber help the digestive system tremendously. And, antioxidants have been proven to help with clearing gut bacteria and speeding up the digestive process.
How to Choose the Best At-Home Gut Microbiome Test
If you’re serious about testing your gut, then you’ll want to get one from a reputable brand based on your needs, ratings and reviews, and budget / cost. Below is a guide you can count on:
Your needs will differ from others in terms of what you’re trying to get out of the test itself. Is it that you want to know if there’s something wrong? Do you want to know how to fix it? Do you want peace of mind? Are you having symptoms that make you feel unhealthy? And, do you want personalized help from world class medical professionals?
All of these questions are critical in trying to figure out which gut microbiome test is best for you, and it’s all based on your needs.
Ratings and Reviews
Here at GoWellness, we’re always helping buyers live a fully optimized wellness life by helping them choose the top products for what they’re looking for. That said, the product's ratings and reviews are a key element to choosing a superior at-home gut microbiome test. Look for both positive and negative customer experiences because there’s not one product in this world that is perfect. With the negative reviews, make sure you dig in to see how the brand responded to the customer. And, for the positive reviews, research why the users liked the particular at-home gut microbiome test so much.
Costs, Pricing and Budget
Most of the time we have a budget in mind when choosing a product we’re considering. But, what do you do when the price differences are only $10-20? Or, how do you decide to go with the third-tier pricing option or a 1x cost of a test-only.
The good thing about our top list of at-home gut health tests is that they are all priced fairly closely. There really aren't too many differences with cost. The main differences are what the testing results provide and what’s included. Be sure to check exactly what you want, the price of it and what the value is that you’re paying for.
How To Get Started
It’s very easy to get started with a gut health test kit. Let’s take a look at the steps below, so you can get going right away.
Step 1: Order your gut health test kit (we recommend Ombre, get it here)
The process is simple to order it, and they are all basically the same. All you need to do is fill in an online form to create an account, which will be useful in step 3. Use your favorite payment method to place your order and wait for the brand to ship their kit to you. Everything is secure and legitimate as these are reputable brands you can trust.
Step 2: Take a sample
All of these gut microbiome health tests on this list use a stool sample. It’s pretty simple – you’ll take a stool sample, put it in the testing container and then ship it back to the address they provide for you, which goes to their certified testing lab.
Step 3: Get results and/or a personalized supplement or food plan
The last step is you basically waiting around until your lab results come back. Remember that account you created in step 1? Well, now it comes in handy as you’ll get your results back inside your personal dashboard.
Final Verdict: Which Gut Health Test Do We Recommend?
I'd like to be transparent with the main goal of helping you choose the right one. What you need to know is that gut tests are not the same as food sensitivity tests. They are two separate tests – something to be aware of when shopping around so you don't make that mistake.
You can't go wrong with these brands as they are transparent and have great reviews plus ratings (it's always nice to have options). My recommendations are as followed:
First: Viome – click for best price
Second: OMBRE – click for best price
Third: THORNE – click for best price
Fourth: BIOHM – click for best price
Healthy Tips From Our RD
Sometimes our genetics get the best of us and there's nothing we can do but deal with the hand we were dealt. However, most of the time, the reasons why we are in an unhealthy situation (in this case our gut), it's because of the unhealthy choices we made.
My nutrition recommendations are to eat lots of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains. These foods are high in fiber, which can benefit the digestive system. One study found that diets that are rich in vegetables and fruits prevented the growth of bacterial disease.
Here are certain foods that improve gut health based on scientific studies:
- Green peas
- Whole grains