Probiotics are good bacteria that live in your gut and are responsible for nutrient absorption and supporting your immune system. Science shows they’re a great way to support a healthy gut and may help treat some digestive problems, such as constipation and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). They also may relieve depression and help to prevent obesity. Luckily, probiotics are not only found in capsule or powder form, they also can be found in many foods. Here is a list of best 5 probiotic foods you should add to your diet.
1. Yogurt: Yogurt is probably the easiest to rich probiotic food. When making yogurt producers add cultures of bacteria after milk has been pasteurized, to ensure the bacteria survives. But before buying yogurt you need to read the label to ensure that the yogurt comes from goat’s or sheep’s milk and that it is grass-fed and organic. You can add it to salad dressing, dips, and cold sauces but remember that any recipe that requires heating the yogurt in any way is going to kill off its good bacteria.
2. Kimchi: This traditional Korean side dish is made by fermenting cabbage, cucumber or radish. Since it’s mostly pickled vegetables, kimchi is a great low-calorie source of fiber. According to a study published in January 2014 in the Journal of Medicinal Food, this kimchi is packed with healthy bacteria called lactobacilli, giving it a probiotic boost.
3. Kefir: It is a milky beverage originated in Russia and Turkey. It is a combination of fermenting goat, cow or sheep’s milk with kefir grains and it contains ten to 20 different types of bacteria. Kefir is similar to yogurt, but because it is fermented with yeast and more bacteria, the final product is higher in probiotics.
4. Kombucha: Kombucha is a probiotic-rich fermented drink made with tea, sugar, bacteria, and yeast. Many claims have been made about kombucha, but its primary health benefits include digestive support, increased energy and liver detoxification.
5. Miso: Miso is a traditional Japanese spice found in many of their traditional foods. Soybeans fermented with brown rice and koji produce miso paste. The fermentation process is what makes this condiment a source of lactobacillus acidophilus. Just remember that high temperatures can kill probiotics (eliminating their health boost). Add the miso paste just before serving and avoid super-hot temperatures to preserve as many beneficial microorganisms as possible.