Today’s era is plagued by a vast number of chronic digestive and other serious health ailments. This is partly to blame for our growing consumption of unhealthy foods. From constipation to chronic conditions like Irritable Bowel Syndrome, the list of digestive ailments only grows long! Prebiotics has long been known to be beneficial to gut health. Read on to know more about this miracle class of food!
What is Prebiotics?
Prebiotic is defined as a kind of fiber (non-digestible food ingredient) that helps in the growth of friendly gut (intestinal flora a.k.a. probiotics). Probiotics in turn help in keeping the digestive system clean and healthy! Prebiotic foods aid digestion, help in the increase of vitamins in the body and are also known to benefit the immune system.
Need for Prebiotic Foods in our Diet
Prebiotic foods aid digestion, help in the increase of vitamins in the body and are also known to benefit the immune system.
Prebiotic foods are an essential requirement of our body for a healthy and happy digestive system. Due to our diets being mostly made up of processed food and sugar, prebiotics is an essential requirement for the normal functioning of our body. Prebiotics and probiotics work hand in hand to maintain the balance of good friendly and eliminate the bad bacteria.
Mechanism of Prebiotics
Prebiotics make their way into our digestive system whole i.e. without being broken down and become the nutrient sources for the friendly bacteria in our gut. Due to its connection with so many bodily functions, prebiotics is vital for the healthy functioning of the body.
Benefits of Prebiotics
Listed below are some benefits of consuming prebiotic foods –
- Better gut health and improved digestion.
- Enhanced immune system and cancer protection.
- Reduced inflammation in the body.
- Lesser chances of developing heart disease.
- Increased metabolism which leads toweight loss.
- Improved bone health.
- Better hormone regulation.
Top 10 Prebiotic Foods
1. Chicory Root
A popular additive in coffee, 47% of chicory contains the prebiotic fiber inulin. Chicory root also helps in bile production, fat elimination and protects the liver from oxidative damage.
2. Dandelion Greens
Dandelion greens contain 4 grams of fiber per 100 grams serving. They are also known for their anti-inflammatory, diuretic andcholesterol-lowering food.
3. Jerusalem Artichoke
High in thiamine andpotassium, every 100 grams of Jerusalem artichoke contains 2 grams of fiber. This vegetable is known to strengthen the immune system and prevent certain metabolic diseases.
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Garlic contains the fiber inulin and the naturally occurring prebiotic fructooligosaccharides. This miracle herb is also known to lower the risk of heart diseases and cancer.
5. Raw Onions
Rich in the flavonoid quercetin, this famous vegetable helps in the accelerated breakdown of fats and prevents many cardiovascular diseases.
The lesser-known cousin of onion and garlic, this potent food contains 16% inulin fiber. Leeks are also rich in flavonoids that help the body in releasing oxidative stress.
Asparagus is known to promote the growth of friendly gut bacteria and also has anti-inflammatory benefits.
Unripe bananas are ripe in resistant starch which is known to have prebiotic effects. This fruit is also known toreduce bloating.
A popular cereal grain, barley contains 3–8 grams of beta-glucan per 100-gram serving. Beta-glucan not only promotes gut bacteria but also has been known to lower cholesterol.
preOats are an important source of beta-glucan and some resistant starch. This cereal has also been known to offer anti-inflammatory protection due to its phenolic content.
This was all about Prebiotics. Both Pre and Probiotics are essential and must be included in our diet.
Nikita Mayuresh is a software engineer turned health and wellness blogger. She is passionate about healthy lifestyle, yoga and different other forms of exercises. A fit body is only earned through efforts in right directions. Cultivating healthy habits and maintaining them is the only way to always be fit.