A few members of our team — and many of you — have become full-fledged, fervent devotees of Omni-Biotic’s wondrous Stress Release probiotic supplement: it truly delivers improvements in cognition, mood, and focus, and it has multiple clinical studies to back it up. But for the next month or two, some of us are switching (gasp) to something else, and we think many of you might want to do the same thing.
Omni-Biotic Hetox is this Austrian brand’s other favorite among healthcare practitioners, and for good reason: it addresses the health of the gut-liver axis, supporting the body’s detoxification processes for improved energy levels, clearer skin, and improved metabolic health. Take a deep dive into Hetox’s benefits and clinical studies in Dara’s interview with Omni-Biotic USA’s COO, Hannah, below.
Dara: I was such a Stress Release devotee, but I’ve been taking Hetox for the past month and I love it, too! You mentioned once that you’re a Hetox fan as well.
HANNAH: Yes — I loved Stress Release for the longest time and decided to run a little experiment on myself taking Hetox for 3 months. I specifically looked at how Hetox would impact several cardiometabolic markers that I’d been tracking with lab work for the past few years. I was thrilled to see that just after a few weeks of taking Hetox (and without changing anything else in my lifestyle or diet), several of these markers had improved.
Dara: Can you tell us what’s so special about the Hetox formula and what it does?
HANNAH: Hetox is truly a one of a kind probiotic. It was developed specifically to support the gut-liver axis.
I think about it in the following way: the gut is the machine room of the body, the blood is your transport highway, and the liver is a waste processing plant and a cleansing filter. Anything you ingest gets processed in the small and large intestine, and what’s left — including toxins — gets sent to the liver via the portal vein. The liver is the first stop after the intestines.
In a healthy gut, the liver filters out the typical load of things we don’t want circulating in the body (for example, environmental toxins or larger compounds found in medications). But in a leaky gut, many of these things leak into the bloodstream and a greater amount goes to the liver. The liver has to work overtime to get rid of these extra toxins. Over time, the liver becomes overburdened, which directly impacts liver function, increases metabolic issues, and can lead to liver damage.
Hetox was designed to address this: it supports healthy intestines and detoxification processes so that the liver doesn’t have to become overtaxed.
Dara: Hetox has some incredible clinical studies behind it, too. Can you tell us about those?
HANNAH: Yes, there are several clinical studies that were done with Hetox.
First, there were two different studies that looked at metabolic health, focusing on a cluster of different markers like high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides, and obesity. Both studies looked at people with diabetes who a) took Hetox for either 3 or 6 months and b) didn’t change anything else in their diabetes management.
Both studies showed similar results, but the results were even more pronounced after 6 months. It was fantastic to see that if you continue taking the product, you’re amplifying its results; you’re not just reaching a steady state after 3 months.
Some of the most surprising findings were that, at the 6-month mark, we saw a significant decrease in endotoxins and significant improvement in markers for metabolic syndrome: a 48% decrease in triglyceride levels, a 53% decrease in c-reactive protein (a major marker for inflammation!), and a 64.2% decrease in HOMA, which is a marker for insulin sensitivity.
Another key study that won an award in Europe looked at patients with liver cirrhosis. In this clinical study, half of the group took Hetox, and half took a placebo. The placebo group experienced significantly faster decline in their condition, while the group that took Hetox experienced significant improvement in macrophage (immune cell) activity, significantly reduced rate of secondary infections (which tend to be a major issue with cirrhosis of the liver), and improved infection defense, as measured by other immune markers.
Finally, there are two very compelling studies on Hetox with migraine. Migraine is still not very well understood, but the hypothesized underlying mechanism behind this study is that one possible migraine cause is neuroinflammation. Inflammation in the brain can, in some cases, be due to too many circulating toxins in the body. If the gut is leaky and toxins get into the bloodstream, the liver can’t filter them out quickly enough — so they can eventually reach the brain and lead to neuro inflammation.
In this study, those taking Hetox experienced a 33% reduction in migraine days after 8 weeks, a 58% reduction in migraine intensity, and a 70-80% reduction in accompanying symptoms (nausea, vomiting, and GI issues).
Dara: Those are very impressive. So who would you typically recommend Hetox for?
HANNAH: It’s a great product for anyone who lives a lifestyle that’s burning the candle on both ends – they might be really busy, traveling a lot in different time zones, are looking to lose weight, not sleeping much, eating out a lot, or eating a diet that’s higher than they’d like in processed foods, fatty foods, or alcohol. It’s also very helpful for people who are taking medications over long periods of time, because that impacts the liver. And it’s excellent for those who may not have diabetes but suspect they’re struggling with insulin regulation — for example, you might get jittery after you don’t eat for a couple of hours, or react strongly to having something sweet.
Another thing we heard from some of our healthcare practitioners is that, since the liver is most active between 2-4am from a TCM perspective, many patients who typically experience night wakings report sleeping much better and not waking up during that time after taking Hetox. If you wake up often in that time or find it hard to go back to sleep during that time, Hetox could help with that.
Even people who swear by Stress Release like to switch to Hetox for a month, once a quarter or twice a year, to help support detoxification. A great time to do this is during or after the holiday season.
Dara: What do people most frequently notice when they take Hetox?
HANNAH: It will improve digestion, like any good probiotic; that’s what people often notice first. Over time, people will also notice signs that their body is detoxifying better, such as improved energy levels, clearer skin and improved metabolic health. People might also notice an improvement in brain fog, an improved ability to sleep, and better-quality sleep.
If people have some issues with blood sugar control or other symptoms related to metabolism, they might sense they can go longer without needing a snack, for example. Lastly, if you are tracking your metabolic health via lab work, you might also be able to see improvements in cardiometabolic markers and inflammatory markers in your lab work, similar to those measured in the studies we talked about earlier.
Dara: For those of us who are already Stress Release fans, the choice between the two formulas might be difficult. Can you tell us how you think about Stress Release vs Hetox?
HANNAH: Stress Release is a psychobiotic; in addition to supporting digestive health, it really focuses on the gut-brain axis to deliver improvements in cognition, mood, and focus. It’s a good one to go with if you’re overwhelmed, you have trouble focusing, and you experience low mood in darker months. Many people report a general feeling of being more calm and better able to handle stressful situations when taking Stress Release.
Hetox really focuses on detoxification and metabolism. It’s a good choice if you’re really busy, you’re struggling a bit with your diet or your weight, you’re taking medications over the long term, or you think you may have insulin resistance.
If you think both might be helpful, try one for a month, then try the other for a month and see which one you feel better on. There’s no harm in continuing to switch them up depending on what your body is craving; don’t do one day on, one day off, but you could take Hetox for a week, for example, when you’re eating out a lot or on vacation or during the holidays. You’re having meals late in the evening, eating at restaurants, having a glass of wine or two – these are situations where I’d lean on Hetox. It can help your body stay strong through the holidays when you might be indulging more.
Dara: Can you use Stress Release and Hetox together?
HANNAH: You can definitely take more than one Omni-Biotic formulation on a given day. However, with Hetox specifically, since Hetox is so powerful, many people feel best if they just take Hetox. We do have some customers — especially those who are very tall and maybe a bit overweight — feel best if they take Hetox twice a day.
If you like both Stress Release and Hetox, you could see how you feel when taking one formulation in the morning and the other in the evening. Another option would be to take whichever of the two you like best for an ongoing routine, and keep a box of the other on hand for times when you need that little extra stress management or metabolic/detoxification support.
Dara could not be happier to have stumbled upon this gem in a pharmacy in Vienna — and to have found the company that brought Omni-Biotic to the US. Read more about them in our Brand Spotlight.