What Are Prebiotics and Why Do We Need Them?

Prebiotics are to probiotics what fertilizer is to a garden. They are the foods that nourish the healthy bacteria and help them to “set up shop” and thrive in your GI tract. Incorporating foods that are high in prebiotic fibers into your diet is an essential part of the journey toward a balanced microbiome.

By definition, prebiotics are nondigestible fiber compounds that pass (undigested) through the upper part of the gastrointestinal tract and stimulate the growth and activity of advantageous bacteria that colonize the large bowel by directly nourishing them and helping them thrive.

Top Foods Containing Prebiotics

Cooked Whole Unrefined Grains and Grain-like Seeds:

Oats
Millet
Amaranth
Quinoa
Brown or Wild Rice
Buckwheat
Barley
Whole Wheat
Flour Wheat Bran
*Remember, the more unrefined, the better. For example, steel cut oats are better than rolled and raw steel cut oats are better than plain steel cut.

Raw Herbs, Vegetables and Fresh Fruits:
Chicory Root
Burdock Root
Dandelion  Root
Tomatoes
Jicama
Jerusalem Artichoke
Dandelion Greens
Garlic
Leek
Onion
Asparagus
Yacon
Banana
Kiwi Fruit
Apples

Other:
Pistachios
Unrefined Honey
Acacia Gum
Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Fermented Foods:
Sauerkraut
Cabbage
Miso
Kefir

Tips For Eating More Prebiotic Foods:
• Snack on pistachios and hummus with jicama sticks!
• Try adding fresh asparagus and apple cider vinegar to your salad.
• Soak your oats overnight instead of cooking them for a delish raw oatmeal with honey and bananas!
• Make a yummy salsa or guacamole with fresh onion and garlic.
• Buy sprouted grain breads and try replacing white rice with quinoa!

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Julie Hays is the Communications Director here at Hyperbiotics. Health writer and mama of two little girls, Julie's on a mission to empower others to live lives free of the microbial depletion many of us face today. For more ideas on how you can maximize wellness and benefit from the power of probiotics, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter.

Posted in Gut Health, Lifestyle, Prebiotics, Top Articles


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