Best Bromelain Supplements Ranked for 2018 – Top 10 Brands

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Jump Ahead to the Best Bromelain Products

Health supplements derived from herbs, fruits and vegetables can help to support and enhance your health through the power of nature. Many natural remedies have been found to be equally effective for certain conditions, and they also provide holistic health benefits that can help health conditions. Many of these natural remedies have been used for hundreds and thousands of years in traditional medicine.

For example, pineapple has been used as folk medicine in Japan, Hawaii and Taiwan for centuries. Bromelain, a natural supplement derived from pineapples, is one of the active compounds found in pineapples. When isolated, bromelain makes a good supplement for reducing inflammation, infections, wounds, bruises and more.

What is Bromelain?

Bromelain is a mixture of enzyme compounds naturally found in pineapples. It was first discovered and isolated in the late 1800s, and it has been approved in Germany to help treat inflammation and swelling after surgery. This enzyme blend is beneficial for digesting proteins and is often used to reduce inflammation and treat indigestion, among other things. Bromelain supplements isolates bromelain and provides it to consumers in easily taken pills, tablets and capsules.

Uses & Benefits of Bromelain

Bromelain is a beneficial enzyme found primarily in pineapple. The enzyme has been studied extensively, with over 1,600 scientific articles examining the potential benefits of bromelain. Some of the most common uses include:

  • Injuries & recovery: Bromelain may be useful in speeding recovery time from injuries and surgeries, and potentially reducing some of the most bothersome symptoms associated with recovery time. One study looked at patients with recent oral surgery, and found that supplemental bromelain helped to decrease swelling and pain following the operations, when compared to the control group. Bromelain has documented anti-inflammatory properties, leading many to use it in combination with or as an alternative to generic painkillers and anti-inflammatories like aspirin.
  • Cancer: Bromelain may be beneficial in slowing the spread of certain cancers in the body. Bromelain has the potential to promote apoptotic cell death and reduce the growth of tumors. Recent studies have found it beneficial for mesothelioma, and some evidence suggests it may hold promise for protecting against lung and breast cancer, as well. Bromelain holds significant potential in malignant cancers, although most experts agree that more research is needed to evaluate these effects.
  • Digestion: Bromelain is an enzyme that assists in the process of digesting proteins. It may help to improve your body’s ability to absorb and use nutrients and is sometimes prescribed alongside certain medications to aid in their absorption. Bromelain can also help reduce the secretion of cytokines, which are pro-inflammatory and can potentially damage the lining of the gut. It may also be beneficial for addressing inflammatory bowel disease, because it can decrease colonic inflammation. Bromelain is thought to be potentially beneficial for anyone suffering from constipation, diarrhea, heartburn, ulcerative colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, and related gastrointestinal issues.
  • Joint pain: Bromelain may be beneficial for addressing joint pain and symptoms of osteoarthritis, according to a recent study. The analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of bromelain are thought to be responsible for this potential benefit. This particular study looked at patients with osteoarthritis and painful joint conditions. When bromelain was prescribed twice daily, participants reported reductions in pain levels of up to 60%.

Bromelain has several other potential uses, although these are the most common. The primary food source is pineapple, and bromelain may also be beneficial in supplement form.

Who Can Benefit from Bromelain?

  • Those with Digestive Problems – It can help to improve protein digestion, which your body has more trouble with as you age. It can also reduce inflammation that may cause inflammatory bowel disease, helping the symptoms of the disease (such as diarrhea and constipation.) It may help with both types of the disease – Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis – making bromelain benefits great for those with digestive issues of many kinds.
  • Those with Arthritis – Bromelain acts as a natural anti-inflammatory and pain reliever, similar to NSAIDs. It can be taken by those with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis to reduce inflammation and pain, and also to increase joint mobility. It also can have less side effects than traditional pain relievers.
  • Those recovering From Injuries – Injuries and wounds caused by everyday life, exercise or even surgeries may need some extra help healing sometimes. Bromelain can help reduce inflammation and improve immune response to injuries, and helping avoid bacterial infections.
  • Athletes – Athletes can benefit from taking an effective bromelain supplement to help reduce pain and swelling from intense workouts.

Taking Bromelain

Bromelain supplements should be taken two to three times per day, and with meal for digestive problems. It can be taken in dosages between 80 and 2,000 mg per day depending on the condition. However, bromelain should generally not be taken for more than 10 consecutive days due to potential digestive side effects.

Are There Any Beneficial Bromelain Stacks?

Bromelain can be stacked with certain other supplements to enhance overall benefits. Some of these top bromelain stacks can be tailored to improve efficacy for particular conditions or goals.

  • Bromelain and Papain – Papain is a group of enzymes that come from the papaya fruit. It helps to reduce swelling, stiffness and pain from injuries and conditions such as arthritis.
  • Bromelain and Calcium – Calcium is an essential mineral that is mostly stored in your bones. Stacking calcium along with bromelain improves bromelain benefits for your joint health.
  • Bromelain and Quercetin – Quercetin is a flavonoid, also known as a plant pigment. It is a good supplement reducing pain and inflammation, as well as boosting your antioxidant intake.

Bromelain Supplement Side Effects

Bromelain supplements may have some side effects, but it is well tolerated by most people. Potential side effects include diarrhea, intestinal or stomach discomfort. These side effects are more common when bromelain is taken for more than 10 days in a row.

What to Look for in a Good Bromelain Supplement

The best bromelain supplements should be manufactured by a reliable brand. It is important to research the company before making a purchase to ensure that they manufacture their products in GMP certified facilities. They should also be accurately labeled so you know exactly what is in your product, and so that you know it will be effective.

Bromelain products indicate how potent they are through either GDU’s (gelatin-digesting units) or MCU’s (milk clotting units). One GDU is equal to about 1.5 MCU, and a strong bromelain supplement will have at least 2,000 MCU, or 1,200 – 1,333 GDU per bromelain dosage. If you are concerned about potential digestive side effects, choose a less powerful bromelain supplement by checking the MCU or GDU per gram.

Top 10 Bromelain Products Compared

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1. Doctor’s Best 3000 GDU Bromelain

Doctor's Best 3000 GDU Bromelain

Doctor’s Best Bromelain is perhaps the best bromelain supplement on the market. It is affordable, effective and pure. The only additional ingredients in this product is the vegetarian capsule that it comes in! It is non-GMO, gluten free and vegan.

Specs:

  • 500 mg bromelain (3000 GDU/gram)
  • Affordable
  • 3000 GDU
  • Non-GMO, gluten free and vegan
  • Pure bromelain

Who Makes It?

Doctor’s Best Vitamins is a physician-founded nutritional supplement brand. They offer over 200 different nutritional products primarily made with researched, branded ingredients. They manufacture all of their products in GMP certified facilities.

Bottom Line:

This affordable vegetarian supplement offers all bromelain benefits, in one of the highest reviewed bromelain products. It is effective and manufactured by a reliable company in a GMP certified facility. All of these qualities make Doctor’s Best Bromelain live up to its name!

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2. NOW Foods Bromelain

NOW Foods Bromelain 2400Gdu 500mg

NOW Foods Bromelain is a top bromelain supplement that is also vegetarian.

Specs:

  • 500 mg bromelain (2400 GDU/gram)
  • Vegetarian
  • Natural
  • Made by a great company

Who Makes It?

NOW Foods is a natural supplement producer that was founded in 1968. They offer products in a variety of supplement categories including antioxidants, amino acids, enzymes, herbs, vitamins, minerals and much more.

Bottom Line:

NOW Foods Bromelain offers effective bromelain benefits from a reputable company at a good price.

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3. Source Naturals Bromelain

Source Naturals Bromelain 500 mg

Source Naturals Bromelain is a bromelain tablet that is fortified with calcium, an important mineral to the health of your bones, joints and digestive system. This is complementary to the benefits of bromelain.

Specs:

  • 500 mg bromelain (600 GDU/gram)
  • 68 mg calcium
  • Fortified with calcium

Who Makes It?

Source Naturals is a nutritional supplement company that was founded on the concept of the Wellness Formula® in 1982. They are known for their effective immune boosting and holistic remedies formulated with nutraceuticals, herbs and nutrients.

Bottom Line:

This is one of the better bromelain supplements and is fortified with calcium to improve its benefits.

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4. Life Extension Specially-Coated Bromelain

Life Extension Specially-Coated Bromelain

Life Extension Bromelain is a enteric-coated bromelain pill that offers superior absorption. The enteric coating helps to ensure that the bromelain is absorbed in the small intestine. It is also fortified with calcium for enhanced benefits.

Specs:

  • 500 mg bromelain (2400 GDU/gram)
  • 75 mg calcium
  • Affordable
  • Enteric coated
  • Fortified with calcium

Who Makes It?

Life Extension is a nutritional supplement brand that focuses on improving people’s longevity of life. Their supplements are science based, formulated using raw ingredients and have high nutritional potency at an affordable price.

Bottom Line:

This is an affordable and effective bromelain supplement that almost anyone can benefit from. However, it includes many additional ingredients.

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5. Jarrow Formulas Bromelain

Jarrow Formulas Bromelain

Jarrow Formulas Bromelain is a vegan bromelain tablet that is one of the most affordable on the market. Suitable for vegans, this supplement can be taken by almost anyone!

Specs:

  • 1000 GDU bromelain
  • Affordable
  • Vegan
  • Many additional ingredients

Who Makes It?

Jarrow Formulas is a nutritional supplement brand that is based out of Los Angeles, California. They offer products such as probiotics, vitamins, minerals, standardized herbal concentrates, enzymes and amino acids.

Bottom Line:

This product is affordable and vegan, making it a good bromelain supplement for almost anyone. However, it contains many additional ingredients.

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6. Nature’s Life Bromelain

Nature's Life Bromelain

Nature’s Life Bromelain is a good bromelain pill that is fortified with papain sourced from pineapple and papayas. Papain is a group of enzymes from papaya.

Specs:

  • 250 mg bromelain (150 GDU)
  • 250 mg papain (37 GDU)
  • Vegetarian
  • Fortified with papain
  • Much less potent
  • Some say it tastes bad

Who Makes It?

Nature’s Life is a 40-year-old nutritional supplement brand that specializes in natural supplements and proactive health solutions. They use raw ingredients formulated with minimal processing.

Bottom Line:

Formulated with papain, these two compounds work synergistically to enhance benefits. However, it is much less potent, and some say it tastes bad.

7. Swanson Premium Bromelain

Swanson Premium Bromelain

Swanson Quercetin & Bromelain is fortified with quercetin, a plant pigment found in green tea and red wine.

Specs:

  • 250 mg bromelain (1,500 GDU/gram)
  • 500 mg quercetin
  • Fortified with quercetin
  • More quercetin than bromelain
  • Not vegetarian

Who Makes It?

Swanson is a nutritional supplement company that was founded in 1969. They produce all of their supplements in GMP certified facilities with high quality control standards.

Bottom Line:

This is an effective bromelain supplement, however it contains more quercetin than bromelain, making it more of a quercetin supplement. It also is not vegetarian due to the gelatin content.

8. Pure Encapsulations – Bromelain

Pure Encapsulations - Bromelain

Pure Encapsulations Bromelain is a hypoallergenic bromelain pill.

Specs:

  • 500 mg bromelain (2,400 GDU/gram)
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Expensive

Who Makes It?

Pure Encapsulations is a physician trusted nutritional supplement brand that produces scientifically researched hypoallergenic health supplements. They use no artificial sweeteners, coatings or colors, and they produce all their products in GMP certified facilities.

Bottom Line: This is a great bromelain pill with many benefits that can support your health. Manufactured by a reliable brand, Pure Encapsulations, it is high quality – but the quality comes with a price tag.

9. Nature’s Plus – Chewable Bromelain

Nature's Plus - Chewable Bromelain

Nature’s Plus Bromelain is a chewable bromelain supplement that natural and gluten free. It is a nutritional supplement that supports overall well-being.

Specs:

  • 40 mg bromelain (80 GDU/gram)
  • Chewable
  • Natural and gluten free
  • Low potency
  • Includes sweetener
  • Some consumers say it tastes bad

Who Makes It?

Nature’s Plus is a natural nutritional supplement brand that carries over 1,200 health products. They also maintain a 100% retailer and customer satisfaction guarantee.

Bottom Line:

Nature’s Plus Bromelain is a good bromelain supplement for those who want a less powerful bromelain dosage. However, the lower potency may be less effective. This chewable also includes a sweetener, and some consumers say it tastes bad.

10. Solaray Bromelain Supplement

Solaray Bromelain Supplement

Solaray Bromelain is a powerful bromelain supplement that is a good choice for those who are looking for an extra strong bromelain supplement.

Specs:

  • 1g bromelain (2,400 GDU/gram)
  • Super Strength
  • Not vegetarian
  • Pricier
  • May be too strong

Who Makes It?

Solaray is a nutraceutical brand that specializes in natural herbal supplements. They were founded in 1973 and acquired in 1993. Today they offer over 1,000 different supplement products.

Bottom Line:

This is a strong bromelain supplement that many people can benefit from. It provides all the bromelain benefits. However, it is not vegetarian due to its gelatin content. It also is a bit pricier than some equitable alternatives, and the strength may be too much for some people.