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  1. a usually dairy food or a dietary supplement containing live bacteria that replace or add to the beneficial bacteria normally present in the gastrointestinal tract.
  2. a bacterium in such a food or dietary supplement.
  1. noting or pertaining to a probiotic: a probiotic yogurt drink.

Origin of probiotic

1950-55; pro-1 + biotic, on the model of antibiotic
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Contemporary Examples

British Dictionary definitions for probiotic


  1. a harmless bacterium that helps to protect the body from harmful bacteria
  2. a substance that encourages the growth of natural healthy bacteria in the gut
  1. of or relating to probioticsprobiotic yogurt

Word Origin

C20: from pro- 1 + (anti) biotic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

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