By now, most of us know our gut flora is very important and so we’ve started eating probiotic foods. But what about prebiotics? While probiotics are foods that actually contain these beneficial bacteria, prebiotics supply food to those bacteria, which encourages them to grow and multiply. Simply put, probiotics and prebiotics go hand in hand. You can’t reap the benefits of one if you ignore the other. So if you want to nurture your healthy gut bacteria, these are the ten foods you should start eating more of.
1. Dandelion Greens
An often-ignored green, dandelion greens are an important source of bacteria-feeding fibers. They contain a special type of fiber known as inulin fibers which are important to maintain a healthy colony of bacteria. They also reduce constipation and thus prevent buildup of toxic material in your body.
Your gut loves garlic as much as your palate does. Garlic serves the dual purpose of encouraging good bacteria to grow while at the same time, stopping harmful bacteria in its tracks. While garlic in all its forms is good for you, most experts recommend you eat it raw to get the most of its goodness. It also work as an anti inflammatory and cancer-fighting food.
Onions contains much the same compounds as garlic and are just as effective in promoting good bacterial growth. They contain inulin and another prebiotic compound known as fructooligosaccharides (FOS). The next time you chop a few onions at the start of a recipe, you’ll know it’s the most important prebiotic step of your whole meal.
It’s not all garlic and onions, you can get
5. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds may be tiny, but don’t let their size fool you. Flax seeds are almost entirely made up of good fats and fibers, which are important prebiotic compounds. They also contain a thick mucilage which coats your intestines and prevents constipation. Flax seeds are also an important source of antioxidants which protect your body from free radicals.
6. Wheat Bran
It’s time you stopped eating your wheat refined. Wheat
Even though seaweed might not seem particularly appetizing to you, your gut bacteria is going to love it. The sliminess of seaweed comes from a water soluble fiber, which supports bacterial growth. Because it eases your bowel movement, it prevents buildup of waste and even colon cancer.
Maybe the reason why apples are believed to keep the doctor away is because they’re so good for your gut bacteria. Apples contain the fiber pectin in large quantities, which speeds up the growth
Most of us hated them as children, but now that we’re older and wiser, we’re slowly waking up to the health benefits of oats. Oats contain a kind of fiber known as beta-glucan which has been linked to higher levels of healthy gut bacteria. It can also be a great diet food because it suppresses your appetite and improves your digestion.
10. Chicory Root
A more bacteria-friendly alternative to coffee is chicory root. Chicory root contains the fiber inulin, which promotes healthy bacteria growth. It also has powerful antioxidant compounds which fight off oxidative damage and keep your cells healthy.