What Are Prebiotics? How Does Prebiotics Impact Gut Health

Why Prebiotics?

They contribute to long term health in a multitude of ways like reducing inflammation, improving digestion and absorption of nutrients and boosting your overall immune system. And, the well you maintain your gut health, the efficient your brain functions. Check the gut brain connection.

Prebiotics And Probiotics:

There is always a bit of confusion as to what exactly contributes to gut health and what are ‘probiotics’ and ‘prebiotics.’ Let’s keep this analogy simple. Imagine your gut is comprised of ‘good bacteria’ (probiotics) and ‘bad bacteria’ (pathogens). Check the benefits of probiotics.

Now, in the fight between the good and bad bacteria, we obviously want the good bacteria or probiotics to remain victorious! Probiotic bacteria and pathogens feed on different kinds of foods and luckily they both respond very quickly! So in almost 24 hours, you can start to change your gut health based on the food you eat.

What Are Prebiotics?

These are nothing but the food for the probiotics to feed on which comprises mostly of the fiber found in plant-based foods.

While the probiotics fight the war against pathogens in the gut – when one consumes ‘prebiotic foods’ in the form of natural plant-based food or supplements, the probiotics are fed and thus grow in number to win the war of long-term gut health!

Since prebiotic fiber does not contain nor needs to contain any living bacteria to be effective, it costs less, lasts longer and can be better incorporated in food, compared to probiotics.

Benefits Of Prebiotics:

  • Increases absorption of calcium and magnesium
  • Promotes stronger bones and increases bone density
  • Helps to boost immunity
  • Generates more ‘good bacteria’ in the gut
  • Reduces blood triglyceride levels
  • Improves bowel regularity

List Of Prebiotic Foods:

Common Prebiotic Foods With Inulin And FOS (Fructooligosaccharides):

  • Chicory Root
  • Leeks
  • Garlic
  • Onion
  • Asparagus
  • Dandelion greens
  • Banana
  • Apples
  • Flaxseeds

A serving of green vegetables like the ones mentioned or even an assorted fruits/vegetables salad bowl can be a healthy option to include in your daily diet to get a good dose of prebiotics.

When you eat junk food that comprises of simple sugars, you feed the ‘bad bacteria’ in your gut. So don’t forget to consume a good quantity of prebiotics in a day to ensure longterm health!

Go ahead and feed the friendly bacteria in your gut to help them grow.

What do prebiotics do for you?

Prebiotics are specialized plant fibers. They act like fertilizers that stimulate the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. Prebiotics are found in many fruits and vegetables, especially those that contain complex carbohydrates, such as fiber and resistant starch.

What is a natural prebiotic?

Prebiotics are fibers and natural sugars that stimulate the good bacteria in the gut. Many prebiotic foods are suitable for vegans and people on other diets to eat. These foods include almonds, chicory, garlic, and chickpeas.

When should I take prebiotics?

To be safe, it’s best to take prebiotics at least 2 hours before or after medications. Digestive conditions: If you have a digestive condition like IBS, SIBO or FODMAP, you might prefer to take prebiotics before bed.

Do prebiotics make you poop?

Prebiotics are shown to improve stool frequency and consistency, and when combined with probiotics may provide even more benefits for constipation.

Is apple cider vinegar a prebiotic?

It doesn’t stop there: Apple cider vinegar also has prebiotics from the fermented apples. Those prebiotics contain pectin, an essential for good digestion, which helps foster the growth of probiotics in the gut.

Is coffee a prebiotic?

Research shows that regular and decaffeinated roasted coffee can help to grow probiotic strains as it has a prebiotic effect, thought to be due to the polyphenols it contains, and different strains are able to use different parts of the coffee to grow.

Are bananas prebiotic?

Bananas. Bananas are more than a delicious fruit: They’re rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, and they contain small amounts of inulin. Unripe (green) bananas are high in resistant starch, which has prebiotic effects.

Is potato a prebiotic?

White potatoes are a good source of resistant starch – a prebiotic that feeds beneficial fora in the colon. The bacteria in the gut then produces short-chain fatty acids, which can heal the gut lining and reduce inflammation.

Who should not take prebiotics?

Prebiotics are certainly not appropriate for everyone and can actually worsen symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome since rapid fermentation can cause gas, bloating, diarrhea or constipation in patients who are sensitive.

What are the signs you need probiotics?

6 signs you need a probiotic

  1. You have allergies and asthma.
  2. You suffer from one or more mood disorders.
  3. You’ve had food poisoning.
  4. You’ve taken antibiotics.
  5. You’re always getting sick.
  6. You suffer from skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis.

Which is better prebiotics or probiotics?

The benefits of prebiotics have links to the benefits of probiotics. Prebiotics may support a healthy gut, offering better digestive health, fewer antibiotic-related health problems, and other benefits. There is less research on prebiotics than on probiotics.

What do skinny poops mean?

While narrow or pencil-thin stool is not always a sign of constipation, it may be if your poop doesn’t normally look that way. Constipation is usually caused by a lack of fiber in your diet or not enough exercise. Other causes include pregnancy, travel, use of some medications, and changes in your hormone levels.

Are blueberries prebiotic?

Blueberries, nutrition powerhouses Blueberries are also a well-known prebiotic — its consumption in fresh, frozen, dried, and supplement form supports healthy digestion, fights inflammation, and gut dysbiosis.

Is benefiber a prebiotic?

Prebiotic Fiber Benefiber products containing wheat dextrin or partially hydrolyzed guar gum (PHGG) fiber are made with prebiotic fiber. Prebiotic fiber doesn’t just support a healthy digestive system, it nourishes the growth of good bacteria.

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