Pre and probiotics: what you need to eat and why

A Better You

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Humans have ten times more gut bacteria cells than we do human cells. So what happens in your gut affects everything else in your health. And that’s why it’s essential to keep your pre and probiotics balanced.

Registered dietitian Amanda Allen explains that prebiotics is the food that feeds the good bacteria in the gut, and probiotics are the good gut bacteria that need to be replaced daily because we excrete those quite quickly.

Prebiotic foods:
Produce, especially bananas, artichokes, garlic and onion.

Probiotic foods:

“Probiotic foods are a little trickier to get in everyday diet,” Alen says.

Some of those include fermented foods, like sauerkraut and kimchi, and kombucha, a fermented tea.

Yogurt is also a good source, but make sure it contains live and active cultures. Kefir and aged cheeses are also good choices.

Allen recommends these foods every day.

“There’s no set-in-stone number, but I would tell people every day,” she said. “If you don’t see yourself eating these every day, I would recommend a supplement.”

Allen says gut health is hard to study because our gut microflora dies once it’s out in oxygen. But, she says everything affects your gut health, diet, genetics, smoking and alcohol consumption, and medication. So, it’s essential to pay attention to your body to know if it’s working correctly.

“How’s your digestion? If you have gas, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, those could be signs. There are other, though,” she says.

If you are hungry all the time, that might mean your hunger hormones, which are made in the gut, are imbalanced.

Gut health can also impact your sleep and even anxiety.

“Anything you can think of, there’s probably a gut connection,” Allen says.

Click here for more information, and email Amanda to book a free individual session.

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