We are almost positive that you’ve heard the expression, “You are what you eat.” We believe that the expression, “You are what you feed your microbiome” is more appropriate, given that the percentage of gut-related health problems seems to be increasing every year. Feeding your gut with foods that encourage healthy digestion is paramount to your overall health.
What Is Your Microbiome?
Your microbiome is like a small ecosystem made up of trillions of organisms in the body. When the amount of healthy bacteria outnumbers the amount of bad bacteria in your microbiome, you have better immune response, more energy, better digestion, and a decreased risk of chronic inflammation. The key to maintaining a healthy balance of your microbiome is to consume foods that these healthy bacteria like. These foods are known as prebiotics. You can also add living microbes to your system by consuming probiotics.
Let it be known that probiotics play a major role when it comes to gut health and overall wellbeing. The body needs prebiotics, however, to feed the probiotics and enhance their benefits. Prebiotics travel through the stomach without being broken down, becoming positive nutrient sources for your beneficial gut bacteria. Both prebiotics and probiotics work together to maintain a diverse balance of intestinal bacteria, amplifying your health and propelling you towards a healthier future.
Health Benefits Of Prebiotics
We’ll take a closer look at the benefits of prebiotics and how adding them to your diet can do wonders for the body.
Stronger Immune System
Having diverse, healthy gut bacteria is directly correlated with a healthier functioning immune system. The Greek etymology of the word “probiotic” translates to “giving life.” It is safe to say, then, that both prebiotics and probiotics are necessary for immune support. Studies have found that people with healthier gut bacteria have a better chance of fighting off harmful pathogens, bacteria, and viruses.
Weight Loss Help
Several studies have indicated that regular consumption of prebiotic foods may lead to lower body weight and a decreased risk of obesity. Prebiotic foods are naturally rich in fiber, which helps to promote the feeling of fullness. Certain animal studies show that the production of ghrelin, the hormone responsible for hunger, was far less present after consuming prebiotics.
Improved Digestive Health
The healthy bacteria in your gut require prebiotics to thrive and help the body function better. Since about 70 million people are affected by gut disorders, increasing prebiotic intake is best if you want to increase the amount of probiotic microorganisms in your gut. Feeding and repopulating healthy gut bacteria can lead to regular bowel movements and protect against bacterial overgrowth, which can lead to bloating, gas, acid reflux, constipation, or intestinal bacterial infections like candida.
Reduced Risk Of Heart Disease
Glycation can increase inflammation, lower insulin resistance, and increase the number of free radicals in the body, all of which contribute to the development of heart disease. Consuming prebiotics can not only reduce glycation, but it can also help lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation. Additionally, prebiotics help to balance potassium and sodium, two electrolytes responsible for regulating blood pressure.
Better Nutrient Absorption
While consuming certain foods together can improve nutrient absorption, prebiotics facilitate nutrient absorption by feeding probiotics, which absorb essential nutrients. Probiotics are necessary to absorb nutrients from the foods we eat, but they cannot do their job if we don’t eat prebiotics. Better nutrient absorption can reduce stress, improve bone health, increase energy, and boost overall mood.