Probiotics are being called "this decade's oat bran," by trendspotters, who are referring to the fact that that grain rose quickly to popularity in the 1980s - and stayed there - when "it was shown to lower cholesterol levels." Oat bran ended up in everything for a very long period and it seems likely that probiotics will, too, provided that the companies that use them can get the same results from the live cultures than Dannon has. Known benefits include relief from irritable bowel syndrome, yeast infections, and diarrhea, but more claims are being made every day, suggesting "probiotics may help ward off everything from allergies to colon cancer."
For now, most probiotic products are dairy-based, including a TCBY frozen yogurt, StonyField Farm's upcoming dairy-based energy drink and Dannon's Activa and DanActive. There are soy milk products that contain probiotics and Kashi has put it into cereal.