Pre-, pro-, anti-, there are a lot of biotics to keep up with these days, and it can get mind boggling, to say the least. So, let’s break it down.
“Biotic” literally means life, and in terms of science usually refers to bacteria. We all know that antibiotics are drugs that kill bacteria, but what about prebiotics and probiotics? The words look similar and so are their purposes! Both are ways to support the healthy bacteria we all need in our guts. Proper gut bacterial balance has been linked to digestive health for decades, but we now know it’s also important for so much more including mood balance, decreased sugar cravings, decreased inflammation, tissue repair, and even reduced risk of diseases like cancer, heart disease and autoimmune disorders. So, how can you reap the benefits of all of that biotic goodness?
Probiotics – These are foods that are fortified with the beneficial bacteria. Good sources include yogurt, kefir, kimchi, and supplements, which you can find at any health food store.
Prebiotics – These are foods that support the natural growth and maintenance of beneficial bacteria. Prebiotics are not digested by us, but are digested by the bacteria. To get them into you diet, you simply need to add fiber! Good sources include vegetables and whole grains.
So, eat up! Include foods from both categories and enjoy all the benefits that biotics can add to your life!
By Rick Elliott