Chat with us, powered by LiveChat

Nutrition Spotlight:
Probiotics + Prebiotics

If you’re interested in nutrition, chances are you’re familiar with probiotics–and if not, no worries, this post has you covered. But what about prebiotics? What’s the difference between the two, and why do we need both for a healthy gut?

Probiotics vs. Prebiotics: What’s The Difference

While they sound similar, and both are beneficial to the gut, probiotics and prebiotics are not the same thing. The easiest way to think about it is that probiotics are the healthy bacteria that make up the gut microbiome, and prebiotics are the foods that feed them.

Health Benefits of Probiotics

Here are some of the key benefits of consuming probiotics:

They Improve Digestion. Probiotics are living organisms that live in the large intestine of the digestive tract, and they can contribute to good gut health by protecting against the more harmful pathogenic bacteria. Probiotics can also help symptoms of certain digestive disorders, like ulcerative colitis, as well as improving symptoms like gas, bloating and diarrhea. 

They Can Help Regulate Blood Sugar. Research has found that probiotics have a beneficial impact on regulating blood sugar by reducing blood glucose and insulin resistance. 

They Reduce Inflammation. While some inflammation in the body is needed to help the body fight infection, chronically high inflammation can lead to pain, swelling and even damaged tissues. Probiotics have anti-inflammatory properties and have been shown to reduce C-reactive protein, a marker of inflammation. Probiotics may be beneficial for treating inflammatory conditions like arthritis, digestive disorders and even depression. 

They Boost Immune Function.  Probiotics may also be able to give your immune system a boost by increasing levels of natural antibodies that fight off infection and decreasing levels of harmful bacteria.

How To Get Them In Your Diet

You can add probiotics to your diet by including both supplements and probiotic-rich foods. Some food sources of probiotics include:

  • Fermented dairy, like yogurt and kefir

  • Miso

  • Tempeh

  • Kimchi and fermented vegetables

  • Kombucha 

Health Benefits of Probiotics

Here are some of the key benefits of consuming probiotics:

Now that we’ve talked about the importance of probiotics,  let’s talk about why prebiotics matter. Prebiotics come from plant foods in the form of non-digestible carbohydrates, like dietary fibre. This fibre is digested by probiotics, and partially fermented, to form short-chain fatty acids. 

They Can Improve Gut Health. Similar to probiotics, prebiotics are important for good digestive health. Butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid, in particular, has been found to enhance the integrity of the intestinal barrier–which is important for nutrient absorption–and to improve symptoms of inflammatory bowel diseases.

They Support Heart Health. Consuming prebiotics has been found to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by reducing inflammatory elements, such as triglycerides. 

They Support Mental Health. The gut and brain are intricately connected through a two-way communication channel called the gut-brain axis. Not only can stress can actually negatively impact the gut by altering the gut microbiome, but the gut can impact our mood by releasing certain hormones. Prebiotics have been shown to improve mental fatigue, recognition and even mood.

How To Get Them In Your Diet

The best way to consume prebiotics is by consuming a diet rich in plant-based whole foods, such as:

  • Bananas

  • Apples

  • Onions

  • Garlic

  • Beans

  • Root vegetables

  • Rice

Choosing Prebiotic + Probiotic-rich Foods at Impact Kitchen

If you’re looking to include more gut-supportive foods into your diet, here are some of our favourite choices at Impact Kitchen:

  • Zesty Mexican

  • Victory Bowl

  • Organic Non-Gmo Tempeh

  • Chicken Noodle Soup

  • Turkey Chili

  • Chia Pudding

  • Parfait Cup

  • Kimchi

Gut health is imperative to overall well being, and therefore the importance of probiotics and the foods that feed them cannot be overlooked. By consuming a diverse plant-based diet, along with a variety of fermented foods, you can improve digestion, reduce inflammation and support your general health!


Sign up below to stay up to date on the latest at Impact

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.


Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Privacy Policy