Pre and Probiotics: Everything You Must Know

Updated: May 20

Probiotics: These are live bacteria found in certain foods or supplements. They can provide numerous health benefits.

Prebiotics: These substances come from types of carbs (mostly fiber) that humans can't digest. The beneficial bacteria in your gut eat this fiber.

Both prebiotics and probiotics support the body in building and maintaining a healthy colony of bacteria and other microorganisms, which supports the gut and aids digestion.

Which Foods Are Prebiotic?

  • Legumes & beans

  • Bananas

  • Berries

  • Jerusalem artichokes (not the same as regular artichokes).

  • Asparagus

  • Dandelion greens

  • Garlic

  • Leeks

  • Onions

Benefits Of Prebiotics

1. They Help Your Body Properly Absorb Nutrients

Prebiotics help probiotics recolonize in the gut. In turn, your body is able to properly absorb nutrients and turns off its autoimmune responses. This helps you convert food into energy more readily. Moreover, by absorbing nutrients better, prebiotics also play a part in protecting your bones.

2. They Keep Your Blood Pressure in Good Shape

Eating prebiotics helps balance the body’s electrolyte & mineral levels, which are responsible for controlling blood pressure.

3. They Decrease the Risk of Cancer

A healthy consumption of prebiotics has been shown to decrease the number of free radicals and cancer cells in the body. Many studies have also shown a decrease in tumors in those who eat a diet packed with prebiotics.

4. They Keep Your Gut Happy and Healthy

Prebiotics, along with probiotics, maintain a healthy gastrointestinal system by increasing the presence and diversity of good bacteria. They also help improve overall digestion and reduce the risk of leaky gut syndrome.

Which Foods are Probiotic?

  • Sauerkraut

  • Kimchi

  • Kombucha tea

  • Kefir (dairy and non-dairy)

  • Some types of pickles (non-pasteurized)

  • Other pickled vegetables (non-pasteurized)

Benefits Of Probiotics

1. Digestive health

Numerous studies have found that probiotics may improve digestive health in some people.

2. Mental health

It is possible that probiotics have a positive effect on mental health because there is a link between brain health and the gut. Research suggests that probiotics may significantly improve one's mental health.

3. Gastrointestinal health

People with disorders affecting the stomach and intestines often see improvements with probiotics.

4. General health.

Probiotics have been found to decrease:

  • Eczema

  • Vaginal infections, such as yeast infections

  • Gestational diabetes

  • The incidence of ventilator-assisted pneumonia

  • School absences from colds

  • The need for antibiotics

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