Why We Should Be Focusing More On Prebiotics
Knowing about the role of probiotics and beneficial bacteria of the gut has become common knowledge amongst the holistic health community and even in the medical field. Everyone is chatting gut health, and how to replenish the gut with the best probiotic supplements and with the use of some of our favorite foods like sauerkraut, kombucha, miso, kefir, and kimchi. Heck, people are even brewing their own kombucha from home these days using their very own Scoby.
I absolutely love that the wellness industry has turned to understand the huge importance of beneficial and "good" bacteria and everyone is sipping a nice cold kombucha during these hot summer days. We are even seeing kombucha on tap popping up around the city in Toronto.
Working with many clients that have digestive health issues from bloating, constipation, cramping, diarrhea, indigestion, leaky gut, Crohn's and IBS to name a few, I have come to learn the important role of not only a cold glass of kombucha on tap but the beneficial role of prebiotics. Our bodies are fascinating because they are home to trillions of gut bacteria, which together are called the microbiome. The next big step to understanding a thriving and healthy microbiome is the role of prebiotics and how they work in conjunction with probiotics. This information is gold and I am so excited to share it with you all. Keep reading...
I know that probiotics and prebiotics work together and have a strong connection in my body. They are like the yin to my yang, the jelly to my peanut butter, the peas to my carrots, the syrup to my pancakes and they work in perfect harmonious nature with one another!
While probiotics are the bacterial strains itself (think bifibacterium or acidophilus), prebiotics are the food, fuel, and nutrients to the probiotics. The role of prebiotics is to help balance the diversity of the intestinal bacteria and to supply energy for probiotics through a process of fermentation. It is what allows the beneficial and good bacteria in the intestinal tract to grow, multiply and fully thrive! I like to think of it as watering and feeding the beneficial bacteria that is already present in your gut.
Prebiotics are types of soluble fiber molecules found in certain carbohydrates. They are actually undigestible by humans so they completely pass through the digestive tract until they reach the lower part of the large intestine. Amazing, right? Instead of always focusing on replenishing (which is important too), why not shift your focus to also nourishing what is already there through the use of prebiotics!
How can you consume prebiotic food sources? My top prebiotic rich food sources are below.
Prebiotic Food Sources
Raw chicory root (check out one of my favorite herbal drinks called Dandy Blend)
Raw Jerusalem artichokes
Raw asparagus (try this Asparagus Kimchi Recipe)
Raw dandelion greens
Raw or cooked onions
Looking for a great supplement form?
I often refer clients to MS Prebiotics which you can find at any Healthy Planet Store. This prebiotic source is extracted from potatoes and put into a powder form. I love tossing this into my morning smoothie. Try 2 scoops a day and notice as you nourish your gut, improve digestion, support immunity, lower inflammation and help balance blood sugars.
Also, you have to try Crazy D's organic prebiotic 'soda', with no preservatives, added sugar or artificial anything, just natural goodness to nourish the gut! I just tried it for the first time last month at the Tastemaker event at Ever Green Brick Works and loved it!
I would love to hear from you, how do you get your prebiotics in? Do you have a favorite food source? Or a go-to supplement form that you take daily?