In a previous blog post, we discussed the important role probiotics play in our digestive health and immunity, and we discussed the importance of the symbiotic relationship between probiotics and prebiotics. Thinking about increasing your probiotics intake can seem overwhelming at first, (especially when thinking about the time, effort, and money that goes into probiotic supplements) but there are actually a lot of ways to get probiotics into your diet without too much extra effort!
Eating your probiotics is a fantastic way to get these friendly bacteria into your digestive tract naturally, not to mention in a delicious way! With a little education and a changeup of your grocery list, you’ll be filling your gut with the helpful bacteria it needs to function at its best in no time! Hey, you may even have some of these items in your kitchen or pantry already!
Apple Cider Vinegar
Many people have heard about the health benefits of apple cider vinegar; in fact, many American adults add apple cider vinegar to their daily diet to aid in digestion and for the added B-vitamins and polyphenols (plant-based antioxidants). Apple cider vinegar can help aid in digestion by stimulating stomach acid and helping to dissolve protein and fats. Additionally, apple cider vinegar acts as a prebiotic to assist the probiotics in flourishing in the gut.
You've undoubtedly seen kombucha in your local health food stores, but you might not know that it is a fermented tea that has been consumed for thousands of years. Kombucha is full of probiotic bacteria and plenty of antioxidants from the fermentation process of the tea.
Yogurt is fermented food and just like most fermented foods, it’s an excellent source of probiotic bacteria. However, you must be aware that not all yogurts are created equal. Aim to try yogurts that have the word “probiotic” specifically on the label somewhere, as that will usually indicate an extra source of the good bacteria has been added to the yogurt.
It may sound counterproductive since many probiotic supplements are required to be kept refrigerated and cold, but VitaCup’s Probiotic Blend coffee contains 1 Billion CFU’s of heat-resistant probiotics (Bacillus Coagulans), plus Aloe Vera (prebiotics), and vitamins to assist your body with digestive health and immunity.
This superfood has been around for centuries and is one of the earliest foods to be fermented. Sauerkraut is not only a great source of probiotics, but also contains fiber, vitamins C, B, K, iron, and antioxidants. Talk about getting more bang for your buck!
Pickles aren't just a great low-calorie snack food; they can be an excellent source of Probiotics. Like most pickled or fermented foods, pickles are beneficial for the health of your gut. As most pickles are pickled in vinegar, be sure to choose pickles that are made using a salt water brine in order to get your probiotics! Pickles also contain fiber and vitamin K.
This traditional Korean dish is not only deliciously flavorful (with a punch of spice), but it is also an incredible source of natural probiotics. Kimchi is made up of vegetables that have been fermented with probiotic lactic acid (LAB). This live bacteria is highly beneficial for your gut.
By adding Kefir grains to milk, you end up with a sweet, yet tangy yogurt-like drink that is full of good bacteria. Kefir is available at any grocery store and contains a wide variety of probiotics, as well as a ton of protein.
Getting Probiotics doesn’t have to be hard work and it can totally spice up your diet! Even incorporating a cup of coffee or some yogurt to your daily breakfast is an excellent start to improving your gut health. Did your favorite Probiotic make this list, or did you find a new one to try out?