ZBiotics™ is a genetically engineered probiotic that acts like your liver and helps you land on your feet the day after drinking alcohol. It’s engineered to break down an unwanted byproduct of alcohol called acetaldehyde – the main culprit in those rough mornings after drinking.
ZBiotics™ is designed to replicate the natural process of your liver, but do it in your gut. We took a normal probiotic bacteria you already eat every day, and we bioengineered it to produce the same type of enzyme your liver already produces. That enzyme breaks down acetaldehyde – an unwanted byproduct of alcohol that accumulates in your gut when you drink.
Your liver does not have access to your gut. But by putting ZBiotics™ directly in your gut, the goal is to augment your body’s natural ability to digest acetaldehyde while you drink and while you sleep. ZBiotics™ won’t affect intoxication, but it helps you survive your next day.
Acetaldehyde (pronounced “asset” “AL” “duh” “hide”) is a chemical we most often experience as a byproduct of alcohol metabolism. It’s linked to lots of unwanted effects on our bodies, but most commonly it’s associated with the rough feelings you get the day after drinking.
When we drink, our bodies break down alcohol in 2 steps. First: from ethanol to acetaldehyde. Second: from acetaldehyde to acetate (essentially vinegar). The first reaction (ethanol to acetaldehyde) moves quickly, but the second reaction (acetaldehyde to acetate) is less efficient, particularly in the gut. That’s because your gut has drastically lower amounts of acetaldehyde-digesting enzyme. So when we drink, acetaldehyde tends to build up in the gut, which is bad news, because normal responsible drinking habits like hydrating and eating are unlikely to increase your body’s ability to digest acetaldehyde. So you’re probably going to feel it. Good news, ZBiotics™ is here to help.
Yes. ZBiotics™ is completely safe.
It’s simply a combination of a natural good bacteria you likely already eat every day with a natural enzyme your liver already makes. It’s adapted to pass straight through your body, without seeding your gut or changing your microbiome.
And of course, it’s been heavily tested. The safety of ZBiotics™ has been confirmed through years of laboratory testing and review by America’s top food toxicologists. Furthermore, its safety and marketability are fully FDA-compliant, and all testing data is being made publicly available in the peer-reviewed Journal of Toxicology. If that’s not enough, know that ZBiotics™ has now been tried by thousands of people, including each team member of ZBiotics™ (some over 100 times), without issue.
1) Drink ZBiotics™. 2) Enjoy your night. 3) Get some sleep.
Drink ZBiotics™ before or during drinking – the earlier the better. Just give it a shake and drink the whole thing. The probiotics are designed to become active while you drink and while you sleep, helping your body digest acetaldehyde as they’re passing through your gut. Then they simply leave your body after a day or two, without changing your body or impacting your microbiome. Boom. A happier, healthier you, thanks to ZBiotics™.
It's the good stuff.
It's just the natural sedimentation of the probiotic and the flavoring that happens if the bottle is left resting for a while. Just give it a couple shakes to re-suspend and you're good to go.
The flavor is mild and slightly floral. The texture is just like water. The probiotic should make the liquid slightly cloudy unless it settles in the bottle. So give it a shake and watch all the ingredients mix together before drinking.
When you're drinking. The earlier the better.
ZBiotics™’s probiotics need time to “wake up” in your gut, so we say the earlier the better if you can remember it. We drink ZBiotics™ just before going out – right before our first drink. But ZBiotics™ should be active if you drink it any time during the night, so even if you’ve already enjoyed a round or two, go for it, just drink it before bed.
Room temperature. No refrigeration needed.
Store ZBiotics™ at room temperature with the cap on. Do not refrigerate. Try not to open it until you’re ready to drink it; opening it could potentially let contaminants from the air into the bottle.
ZBiotics™ won’t do much if consumed substantially after a round of drinking. ZBiotics™'s key ingredient – the probiotic that breaks down acetaldehyde – needs time to “wake up” in your gut and become active. That’s why we make ZBiotics™ our first drink of the night.
ZBiotics™ expires after twelve months. Check out the USE BY date on your box.
Yes. ZBiotics™ is fully FDA-compliant for safety and adheres to all regulatory requirements for sale in the U.S.
Note that FDA compliance is not FDA approval. FDA approval is a process reserved for drug products making health claims. ZBiotics™ is a food ingredient and has not been approved as efficacious for any purpose by the FDA.
FDA-compliant for safety means that we’ve satisfied all regulatory requirements to ensure ZBiotics™ is safe and can be legally sold in the United States. That means that all our manufacturing is conducted in an FDA-registered food-grade facility according to Good Manufacturing Practices compliant with 21 CFR 117. It also means that our novel ZB183 ingredient has been extensively tested and is generally recognized, among qualified experts, as having been adequately shown to be safe under the conditions of its intended use.
ZBiotics™ will not affect your level of intoxication. ZBiotics™ does not decrease your blood alcohol level, nor does it make alcohol any safer.
All the same rules about alcohol safety apply. Don’t get behind the wheel, don't operate heavy machinery, and don't drink too much. Alcohol is still dangerous on its own.
ZBiotics™ has no effect on alcohol, nor does it shield your body from the health effects of alcohol. Please drink responsibly.
That's not how it's designed.
We intentionally designed ZBiotics™ so that it would not change your microbiome. We purposefully built upon a base bacteria that is well-adapted to passing straight through you and not colonizing your gut.
This creates a few likely benefits: (1) your microbiome remains unchanged; (2) the interaction between our probiotic and your gut should remain consistent and predictable; and (3) because we’re not trying to change your microbiome, we don’t need to use an excessive amount of probiotic per serving.
It does, but dehydration is actually just a small part of how alcohol affects your body.
Alcohol is indeed a diuretic, but that actually contributes only minimally to the feelings you experience after drinking. There is actually some pretty cool scientific literature that shows that the biochemical marker of dehydration does not correlate with the amount of misery people feel the next day after drinking alcohol. And this makes sense; if the negative effects of drinking were due solely to dehydration, a glass of water in the morning would make you 100%... but we all know from experience that morning-after misery can persist well into the day.
There are hundreds of papers demonstrating the unwanted effects of acetaldehyde. HERE is one that shows a direct comparison of acetaldehyde to ethanol. HERE is another on the impact of acetaldehyde on DNA. And HERE is a summary of studies published by the EU regarding the safety (or lack thereof) of acetaldehyde.
ZBiotics™ is designed to break down acetaldehyde, which is responsible for some of the worst feelings you get when you drink. It is not designed to break down alcohol, which causes some of the more minor effects. Alcohol itself affects the quality of your sleep and causes dehydration, but you can usually take care of that with some breakfast and coffee.
B. subtilis ZB183™.
The primary ingredient is a probiotic bacteria we invented called Bacillus subtilis ZB183. We invented it by taking a base strain of B. subtilis and engineering it to produce an enzyme that breaks down the unwanted chemical acetaldehyde.
Other products on the market today are different mixes of the same ~10 off-the-shelf vitamins and plant extracts you can find anywhere. Many of these have absolutely no demonstration of efficacy or even really a hypothesis as to how they could possibly help you.
ZBiotics™ is different. We looked at one of the major unwanted byproducts of drinking alcohol – acetaldehyde – and invented a probiotic bacteria to break it down the same way your liver does. No other product out there does that.
We spent two years in the lab bioengineering a completely new solution from scratch. It’s built the ground up specifically for this purpose, and we’ve patented it.
Furthermore, our product uses a completely new technology. When we launch, we will be the first genetically engineered probiotic to ever hit the market. We are extremely excited not just for this particular use case, but for all the other things we think we can do using bioengineered probiotics.
If you have a soy allergy, to be safe you should not drink ZBiotics™.
We use soy as a protein source when we grow the probiotic bacteria. However, the bacteria are washed and freeze-dried before being put into the final product, so it's unlikely that there is any soy in ZBiotics™. But just in case there are trace amounts, to be safe we are warning anyone with a soy allergy.
First off, no other ingredient in the world actively breaks down acetaldehyde.
But if we felt like any other ingredients would meaningfully improve your next morning, we would use them. Sadly, the science substantiating that is nonexistent or mixed at best.
And furthermore, even if they were functional, it’s difficult to verify the source and purity of many supplement ingredients. We invented ZBiotics™ in-house and have extensively tested its safety, so we can be 100% positive about what’s in our drinks.
In the colloquial sense, ZB is definitely not all-natural. We invented it using modern genetic engineering technology.
But to go down the rabbit hole for a second, it also depends on how you define “natural.” Our technology leverages tools invented by nature. Homologous recombination – the technique we used to build ZBiotics™ – is a natural process, used by bacteria for billions of years. We merely designed an event where the use of that natural process has the precise result we want.
Genetic engineering is the use of modern biotechnology techniques to specifically and deliberately edit the genetic code, or “DNA,” of an organism.
Much like traditional plant and animal breeding on the farm, the goal of genetic engineering is to create unique organisms with new and useful characteristics: a more nutritious type of rice, for example. But genetic engineering allows for far greater control and speed than traditional breeding, as well as new combinations of characteristics that otherwise would take thousands of years to develop in nature.
More or less.
We try to reduce confusion by using these terms interchangeably. The terminology of genetic engineering is convoluted, even for scientists. It’s inconsistent and at times contradictory, so we try to keep it straightforward. But if you really want them, we do have the answers… if you want to know more, check out our blog piece on this.
The primary ingredient, Bacillus subtilis ZB183, was created using genetic engineering.
Specifically, the genetically engineered component is the production of an enzyme known as acetaldehyde dehydrogenase. The base bacteria – a bacteria used for thousands of years to ferment a Japanese soybean food called natto – does not produce this enzyme normally; ZB183 only produces it because we genetically engineered it to do so.
Genetic engineering – the technology underlying GMOs – is a tool to make new products. The tool itself does not carry any inherent risk, but the resulting products must be individually evaluated for safety just like anything else. Saying GMOs are altogether safe or unsafe would be like saying that any product made with metallurgy is always safe or unsafe. But of course a sword and a spoon have very different safety profiles. So we need to evaluate individual products individually.
With that in mind, the scientific consensus on the safety of the GMO foods currently on the market is settled – having been endorsed time and again by unbiased sources from the World Health Organization (WHO) to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
The WHO puts it this way: “[Genetically modified] foods currently available on the international market have passed safety assessments and are not likely to present risks for human health. In addition, no effects on human health have been shown as a result of the consumption of such foods by the general population in the countries where they have been approved.”
But again, genetic engineering is just a tool, and like any tool it can be wielded carefully or recklessly. That is why we strongly advocate for the extensive scientific evaluation of the safety of all new GMO products as a basic tenet of responsible use of genetic engineering.
Lots of things – many of which may surprise you.
There are many GMOs in the world today. We’re most familiar with them as components in major agricultural crops like corn, soy, cotton, sugar beets, and alfalfa. But another major source of GMOs is in the production of therapeutics, where microbes are genetically engineered to produce life-saving drugs. Just one example is insulin for diabetics, which has been produced using GMOs ever since the 1970’s. GMOs can also be found in industrial production, where they are increasingly being used to produce useful food ingredients and industrial products.
There are also an increasing number of GMOs currently in development. Some of these have the potential to save current crops from threats like climate change and disease. For an example, check out this infographic of the genetic engineering research going into saving coffee plants.
One rarely appreciated fact is that your gut, and particularly your colon (part of your gut), is actually a huge sink and source of acetaldehyde in the body, even more so than the blood or liver. In fact, while blood acetaldehyde concentrations generally are around 70-80µM after a night of heavy drinking, colonic acetaldehyde concentrations can reach as high as 300µM. That’s because a large amount of acetaldehyde is actually created in your gut, produced by enzymes in both your intestinal lining and your microbiome.
But acetaldehyde doesn’t just stick around your gut. It’s an extremely soluble molecule. So soluble, in fact, that it can actually diffuse into all the fluid of your body, easily passing through membranes from your gut and into your brain, muscles, and cells. The result? All those non-gut effects of acetaldehyde may in fact be quite gut-related.