What are prebiotics?

Facts about PrebioticsMost of us have heard about probiotics and the benefits they can provide to our digestive system. But what are prebiotics and what do they offer.

Prebiotics and probiotics are fields of nutritional research. Studies have shown it offers significant benefits to both your heart and immune system. The concept behind prebiotics is the stimulation of the large intestine with healthy microflora. This is accomplished because a prebiotic transported is actually a non-digestible food.

Because they’re non-digestible the bacteria have a feast on them. Thus, they can be considered

beneficial food that the beneficial bacteria need to keep functioning properly and to continually improve the overall health of the digestive system.

Where do they come from?

The come from insoluble fiber and from carbohydrate molecules which are derived from only small number of simple sugars. These can also be referred to by a very technical term fructooligosaccharides or FOS. Fructooligosaccharides is also a prebiotic and is often added to dairy foods and baked goods. It improves the taste and stimulates the growth of the beneficial bacteria, bifidobacteria.

Types of Prebiotics:

Prebiotic can include anything having sugar in it. They can include the following:

  •     Herbs – chicory root, burdock root and dandelion root
  •     Fruits – such as apples, bananas
  •     Sweet vegetables – such as onions, garlic, asparagus, leeks and Jerusalem artichokes
  •     Raw apple cider vinegar
  •     Mother’s milk for babies
  •     Fructooligosaccharides (FOS) is a subgroup of inulin.
  •     Dairy products

What Can They Do For You?

Heart Health

Heart disease indicators include cholesterol and triglyceride levels, prebiotics have been shown to moderate both of those.


Prebiotics can increase white blood cells while eliminating the T cells. It has even been shown to help the human body’s response to vaccinations.

Chronic Illness and Digestion

Because prebiotics act in your intestines, they have a profound effect on the pathogens and bad bacteria in your body that can cause disease. Prebiotics are being used to treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Crohn’s Disease

Gluten Free Grains

While grains like wheat act as prebiotics, they also feed yeast. grain-like seeds (amaranth, quinoa, millet and buckwheat) are gluten-free alternatives that act as prebiotics AND don’t feed pathogenic yeast.

Sweet Vegetables

Vegetables are 80% of the Diet, so you can eat plenty of asparagus, leeks, onions, garlic, Jerusalem artichokes and other sweet vegetables to feed healthy microflora without feeding pathogenic yeast.