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Health Benefits Of Prebiotics & Probiotics

Health Benefits Of Prebiotics & Probiotics

If you’ve ever wondered… how can I support my gut health? You’ve come to the right blog! Today we’re chatting about prebiotics and probiotics. We’ll explore the difference between probiotics and probiotics, gut healthy food sources, simple gut healthy recipes and more!

Why is Gut Health Important?

Your gut, also called your gut microbiome contains over 1 trillion bacteria, which equals about 3 pounds! This microbiome is already home to “good” bacteria that helps us digest food safely and comfortably. Over time, our microbiome can slowly become disrupted through poor diet, antibiotics, infections and toxins, which can lead to a bacterial imbalance and inflammation. This can lead to unwanted bacteria taking over which can wreak havoc on our gut, causing all kinds of digestive distress. 

Not only does your gut health affect your digestion, but your gut plays a key role in your immune health, mood, energy levels, hormonal health and skin health. At an even deeper level, your microbiome works to metabolize fats, carbohydrates and proteins. Your gut is also referred to as “the second brain” because of how closely gut health is related to cognitive health! This gut-brain connection is made up of two thin layers packed with nerve cells inside your GI tract. These millions of cells run from your esophagus to your vagus nerve, which is your longest nerve. Even 70-80% of your immune health resides if your gut! So… we now know that gut health is important and should be something we pay attention to. Next, let’s chat about 2 ways we can support gut health!

What are Prebiotics?

Prebiotics are essentially the food or fuel for probiotics. The food we eat will either positively or negatively balances our good gut bacteria. With prebiotic foods, they help increase the “good bacteria” or probiotics in our digestive system. 

Prebiotic Food Sources:

Garlic

Onions

Leeks

Asparagus

Bananas

Oats

Barley

Apples

Flaxseeds

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are good, living bacteria naturally found in our digestive tract. As mentioned above, this healthy bacteria may strengthen the immune system, improve digestion, hormonal health and has even been linked to better breath, healthier hair, skin and nails. 

There are several different bacterial strains within your gut that work together to keep you healthy! The two most common bacterial strain groups are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria. Most strains fall under these two categories, but some other stains you may see include Saccharomyces boulardii, Enterococcus faecium and Streptococcus thermophilus. Different strains have been shown to support digestion, immunity and health in different ways, so if you are consuming a probiotic supplement, make sure you’re getting one with a variety of strains.  

Probiotic Food Sources:

Kombucha

Yogurt

Kefir

Miso soup

Sauerkraut

Kimchi

Apple Cider Vinegar

If you decide to take a probiotic supplement, make sure that it is good quality! Ask your health care provider or Registered Dietitian what probiotic supplements they recommend. 

HGG Recipes that Support Gut Health

What we consume on a daily basis plays an important role in our overall gut health. Eating processed foods, foods high in sugar or foods high in unhealthy fats can negatively impact our gut flora. We want to help you consume foods that nourish your good gut bacteria! Here are some of our favorite HGG Recipes that contain either prebiotic or probiotic rich foods! Click the recipe title to head straight to the recipe on the blog… 

Probiotic Buddha Bowl

Lemon Immune Boosting Muesli 

Apple Cider Vinegar Sparkling Drink & Salad Dressing

Make Ahead Veggie Chili

The Best Breakfast Cookies

Cherry Apple Fruit Salad

Summer Pasta Salad

Spring Nourish Salad

Lemon Cashew Creamy Pasta

Cauliflower Crumble Tacos

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