The human gut contains all types of microbes, both good and bad. The good bacteria keep the bad bacteria in check, help with digestion of food, control intestinal permeability, synthesize nutrients like vitamin K2, and send hunger/fullness signals to the brain. It is important to keep the environment in the gut in balance. As long as there is balance, there is health. Once there is imbalance a number of problems develop.These days we consume a lot of antibiotics that are prescribed by the doctor and through meats of animals that are routinely fed antibiotics on the farms. The antibiotics kill the bad bugs and the good bugs as well. Gluten in wheat products and other grains, medications, sugar, alcohol and stress are some of the factors that also destroy good gut flora. Once the good bugs are destroyed, the bad bugs that get into the body in various ways can quickly multiply without control, causing problems. Even yeasts tend to multiply without check in the absence of the good bacteria, causing yeast infection with its long list of health problems. Probiotic foods It is therefore important to restore the good bacteria in the gut. One way is to eat foods that contain probiotics, some of the good bugs that live in the gut. These foods are:
- Live cultured yogurt ranks very high in terms of probiotics if it is made with milk from grass-fed animals and is not pasteurized.
- Kefir is a fermented dairy product that contains fermented kefir grains and looks like yogurt.
- Sauerkraut is made from fermented cabbage and other vegetables. It is does not contain many probiotics but it is high in organic acids which give it its sour taste and support the growth of good bacteria.
- Kimchi is a cultured vegetable from Korea.
- Kombucha is an effervescent fermented black tea that is started by using a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast.
- Coconut kefir is a dairy-free kefir made by fermenting the juice of young coconuts with kefir grains. It contains some of the probiotics found in traditional kefir.
- Natto is a Japanese dish that consist of fermented soybeans and contains the extremely powerful probiotic bacillus subtilis.
- Apple cider vinegar also contains probiotics. Get the raw variety that contains the mother, the sediment at the bottom.
- Salted gherkin pickles are a good source of probiotics.
- Brine-cured olives are an excellent source of probiotics too.
- Tempeh, an Indonesian fermented soybean product, is another source of probiotics.
You can also take probiotic supplements if you can find good quality probiotics. By adding more probiotic foods into your diet, you can get a stronger immune system, improved digestion, increased energy, better smelling breath, healthier skin, less infections from colds and flu, healing from leaky gut syndrome, and weight loss.If you have been taking anti-biotics recently, you probably need to restore the balance of your gut flora. Add probiotic foods to your diet or take probiotic supplements.