Best Prebiotic & Probiotic Foods For Digestive Health
Read this list to discover the best foods for gut health.
Prebiotics are special plant-based fibers that your body can’t digest. They go to your lower digestive tract, where they feed healthy bacteria (probiotics) to grow in your gut making your digestive system work better. Without prebiotics, good bacteria in your gut suffer.
Some experts say you should get at least 5 grams of prebiotics in your diet every day. Too much can lead to gas or bloating. Start with small amounts so your gut can get used to them. You’ll find prebiotics in many fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Probiotics are the “good bugs” and can be found in fermented foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, and yogurt. Eating probiotics add good bacteria to your gut. The most common are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. In addition to helping balance your gut bacteria, probiotics can help if you have diarrhea, boost your immunity, and keep your heart and skin healthy.
Foods That Contain Prebiotics & Probiotics
Sauerkraut is made from cabbage and salt. During the fermentation process, microorganisms eat the sugar present in cabbage and produce carbon dioxide and acids. The probiotics created during fermentation assist with digestion and add good bugs to your gut.
One cup of raw cabbage has 36% of your Daily Value for vitamin C and 56% DV for vitamin K.
Enjoy sauerkraut on a hot dog, substitute it for pickles on a sandwich or burger, add it to potato salad, or put it on a cheese plate and serve your friends something good for their guts.
Kimchi, also fermented cabbage, is the spicy Korean cousin to sauerkraut. It can have scallions, radishes, and shrimp added to give it more flavor. Look for it in the refrigerated section near sauerkraut, other Asian sauces, and pickles.
Kimchi is delicious added to a fried rice bowl with veggies and an egg.
Miso is a fermented paste made from soybeans, barley, or rice. Similar to other fermented foods, beneficial bacteria are produced in the fermentation process. You’ll also get some protein if you eat miso made from soybeans. A little bit goes a long way, which is good since miso is also high in sodium.
Miso is great added to sauces, dressings, and soup bases. Try it on this Miso-Maple Salmon.
Bananas supply your intestine with inulin, a type of fiber that assists good microorganisms to expand. They’re a top-notch choice because they’re high in fiber and a special carbohydrate, both of which feed helpful digestive tract bacteria.
Green bananas (the unripe ones) are best for the gut because they contain resistant starch, a type of indigestible fiber that produces more good bugs when your microbes feed on it. Resistant starch can also be created by cooking grains and then cooling them. So go ahead and make barley in bulk for the week. Ripe bananas are full of fiber too.
Eat bananas with peanut or almond butter for fiber, protein, and healthy fat. Or add to overnight oats, Greek yogurt or a high-fiber cereal, or top whole-wheat toast.
When beans and legumes, such as black beans, chickpeas, peas, lentils, and white beans, reach the large intestine (colon), they are still intact. It’s there that gut bacteria feed on them. This process is called fermentation. And the byproduct? Gas. So while it may be awkward, you can feel good about it because your bugs are hard at work.
Canned beans are a favorite—pick three types, rinse and mix for a simple bean salad. Or throw black beans on top of tacos. Lentils are delicious in soup.
Switching your diet to these gut-friendly foods should get you on your way to better gut health. However, if you can’t find the time to cook or prepare gut-healthy foods. A supplement such has AEON fulvic acid which contains both prebiotics and probiotics and other nutrients beneficial to the gut and body can save you time and ensure you are consuming the proper amount of materials for healthy gut fauna.