We were recently asked if Benefiber ® can be used as successfully as Banatrol Plus for treating diarrhea. Benefiber is a dietary supplement- a single fiber made from wheat dextrin and is most often used to supplement dietary fiber intake. As a dietary fiber wheat dextrin can help with both diarrhea and constipation. Wheat dextrin feeds all gut bacteria – both the good and bad gut bacteria- which can aggravate the original cause of diarrhea especially if it is from antibiotic use. So to a certain extent wheat dextrin can help improve loose stools, but for severe diarrhea the amount needed is very variable and can be too much fiber to consume without it actually contributing further to the diarrhea.
Banatrol Plus is a medical food not a dietary supplement. Banatrol Plus has 3 fiber sources – pectin and amylase resistant starch from bananas and B-GOS (Bimuno) prebiotic. Bananas have been used clinically for years for treating diarrhea. Banatrol Plus just makes this traditional approach easier to consume or to administer feeding tube.
The B-GOS prebiotic fiber in Banatrol Plus is the only prebiotic fiber clinically shown to increase only the beneficial gut bacteria while decreasing the group of pathogenic bacteria – this action makes Banatrol Plus unique and more effective in correcting diarrhea, especially related to c. diff infection.
Banatrol Plus is indicated for the management of diarrhea and loose stools. Once the stool starts to form, the dose is lowered or discontinued. In some cases, such as patients with fecal incontinence Banatrol can be safely administered daily without fear of side affects.