Prebiotics. Do I need them?
Yes you do but more importantly, your gut bugs need them.
Prebiotics are nondigestible, fermentable foods and you may already eat them every day. Microorganisms in your gut use these for energy to keep you healthy. Prebiotic fibre has distinct physical and chemical properties which interact with the microbiota of your gut and can affect your health in different ways.
Also remember, all prebiotics are fibre but not all fibre is prebiotic. To be classed as a prebiotic, the fibre must be:
Able to resist the acidity in your gastrointestinal tract, being hydrolysed by enzymes being absorbed in your upper gastrointestinal tract;
Fermented by your gastrointestinal gut bugs; and
Selectively stimulate the growth and/or activity of intestinal bacteria with the potential of providing positive health benefits.
The health benefits or effects of prebiotics suggested by current research are numerous and may include:
A reduction in the prevalence and duration of infectious and antibiotic-associated diarrhoea;
A reduction in inflammation and symptoms associated with bowel disorders such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD);
May help prevent colon cancer;
Helps your body get the most minerals it can out of the food you eat e.g. calcium, magnesium, and maybe iron;
May decrease your risk factors of cardiovascular disease; and
Can make you feel fuller for longer which can help you lose weight and prevent obesity.
Feeding your gut bugs the right types of fibre can improve they way your gut communicates with the rest of your body. Try to have at least 2-3 different types of prebiotics in your meals each day to help your cut community to be diverse and numerous and in turn they will look after you. `
For More information on prebiotics and how you can increase them in your life click here.