The world is abuzz with news of probiotic foods and what they can do for people’s health and well-being.
Probiotics are a class of bacteria that help the digestive tract and intestines to function properly.
Though they naturally exist in the human digestive tract, many modern diets cause the digestive bacterial levels to get out of balance.
As a result, many people suffer from stomach pains, gas and diarrhea that could be cured and prevented with proper consumption of probiotics.
Though there are many probiotic supplements available for purchase at the grocery store, the best way to keep your probiotic levels within the optimal range is to consume them by eating real food. What follows is a list of the top 9 probiotic foods that you can add to your diet for optimal health:
You have probably already seen the commercials touting the benefits of probiotic yogurt. What you may not realize is that you don’t have to pay extra money for yogurt that is labeled probiotic. In fact, eating any yogurt at all will benefit your probiotic levels, according to NPR.
2. Miso soup
Made from fermented soybean paste, miso soup is a great source of probiotics. In fact, the average bowl of miso soup can contain more than 150 different strains of bacteria. Furthermore, it is relatively low in calories, so you can indulge without guilt.
A German staple, sauerkraut is made from fermented cabbage. As a result of the fermentation process, sauerkraut is full of probiotics that aid digestion.
Kefir is a fermented milk product that has more probiotics than yogurt due to the fact that it is fermented using more bacteria as well as yeast.
Kimchi is another fermented cabbage dish. A staple Korean condiment, kimchi has probiotics that have been shown to aid digestion as well as to combat the bad bacteria that causes stomach ulcers.
A fermented tea, kombucha has recently hit the Western market running. It is a quick and easy way to drink your probiotics and has been around for more than 2,000 years.
Sold as dietary supplements, blue and green microalgae are a powerful probiotic that you can incorporate into your diet in a number of ways. Try adding the microalgae to a sweet smoothie or savory soup.
Sour pickles are a great source of probiotics, so long as they are naturally fermented. To ensure that your pickles are a good probiotic source, check the label to make sure that no vinegar was used in the pickling process (sea salt and water solutions are the best for the formation of probiotics).
Poi is a traditional Polynesian food made from a taro paste. It is one of the few non-dairy probiotics that has been shown to have any major effect on digestive bacteria.
Probiotics are a great addition to anyone’s diet, but they are even more beneficial for people who have struggled with digestive difficulties including diarrhea, gas, or stomach pain in the past. If you believe that you need to up your probiotic intake, give one of these 9 foods a try. The benefits are definitely worth it.
How do you get your daily dose of probiotics? Have you noticed improved digestive health?