Michelle Marks via NaturalHealth365 – Probiotics are foods that help build the population of healthy bacteria in the gut. Why is this so important to human health? Because poor digestive health leads to a wide range of health issues from allergies to many forms of cancer.
Unfortunately, too many people have consumed synthetic antibiotics – which kill healthy bacteria. As healthy adults, we are supposed to carry around 3 to 4 pounds of “good” bacteria and yeast in our gut. But, every time we take antibiotics, we kill beneficial bacteria inside the digestive tract.
Dysbiosis Has Been Linked to a Multitude of Chronic Health Conditions, Scientific Evidence Suggests
Eventually, a condition called dysbiosis can occur – which can cause arthritis, autoimmune illness, vitamin B deficiency, chronic fatigue syndrome, food allergies, and food sensitivities, irritable bowel disorders plus skin problems like, eczema and psoriasis.
THESE Are Some of the Best Probiotic Foods to Improve Digestive Health
Try eating fresh sauerkraut and pickles. Finely shredded cabbage, which gets fermented, is a super-rich source of probiotics. A 2007 study published in the journal of Applied and Environmental Microbiology revealed that more than 13 different species of gut-friendly bacteria are present in sauerkraut. Naturally speaking, pickles and sauerkraut are some of the best probiotic foods to eat – especially after a heavy dose of antibiotics.
Fortunately, it’s quite easy to make your own sauerkraut at home by combining finely shredded cabbage with Himalayan sea salt. Just store it in a mason jar at room temperature. In the presence of sea salt, the cabbage releases water, and the surface bacteria on the cabbage helps in the process of fermentation.
If you want to buy sauerkraut, be sure to avoid the ‘commercial’ varieties that are heat-treated and pasteurized for obvious reasons. My personal favorite store brand is Real Pickles.
Miso soup is one of the mainstays of traditional Japanese medicine and is commonly used in macrobiotic cooking as a digestive regulator. Made from fermented rye, beans, rice, or barley – you can easily add a tablespoon of miso paste to hot water to make an excellent (quick), probiotic-rich soup. One of my favorite companies for quality miso paste is South River Miso Company.
Kefir, which is similar to yogurt, is a fermented dairy product. High in lactobacilli and bifidus bacteria, kefir is also rich in antioxidants. Look for a good, organic version at your local health food store to improve digestive health and help restore your microbiome.
Kombucha is a form of fermented tea that contains a high amount of healthy gut bacteria. This probiotic drink has been used for centuries as a natural way to boost energy levels, improve digestion and achieve weight loss goals. Just keep in mind that kombucha, with its natural sugars, may not be for everyone – especially if you suffer from candida.
Tempeh – as long as it’s non-GMO – is a probiotic-rich, fermented soybean product. It’s also a delicious meat substitute for vegetarians or vegans and a nice source of vitamin B12.
Kimchi is the Asian form of pickled sauerkraut. It’s actually an extremely spicy and sour fermented cabbage – typically served in Korea. Kimchi is rich in beta-carotene, calcium, iron, and vitamins A, C, B1, and B2, plus a great source of probiotics. However, proceed with a bit of caution, as this food has an intense spicy flavor.
But Wait, That’s Not All! THESE Foods Also Offer Probiotic Benefits
Remember, to restore your gut bacteria, it is also important to consume a variety of raw fruits and vegetables – as often as possible. We say ‘raw’ because, although most produce gets washed before consumption, some bacteria clings to the surface, providing natural probiotic benefits.
Improving gut health is relatively inexpensive and loaded with health benefits like a stronger immune system and greater clarity of mind. If you suffer from serious health problems, work with an experienced healthcare provider to restore healthy bacteria today.
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