Prebiotics and Probiotics -- What's the Difference?


Soy Product Containing Prebiotics

Experts are now recommending prebiotics for the body versus probiotics. So what’s the difference?

Prebiotics are foods that feed the "good" bacteria in the body, while probiotics are foods that replenish the “good” bacteria supply. Another huge difference is that the prebiotics usually do not perish like many of the probiotic foods do.

Examples of prebiotic foods include asparagus, bananas, oatmeal, legumes (dried beans), Jerusalem artichokes and garlic. Onions, soy products, and chicory are a few more. Examples of probiotic foods include yogurt, sauerkraut, gouda cheese, misco soup and sourdough bread.

The process of feeding the good bacteria in your body can provide you one or more advantages. For instance, they can keep your colon and small intestine working the way these organs should. Other benefits include weight loss and regulated insulin and glucose levels. They also help protect you from harmful bacteria that cause sickness or disease.

Probiotic foods provide similar health benefits as prebiotic ones. However, they add more advantageous bacteria to your body instead of feeding what you have in you already.

You also can combine certain prebiotic and probiotic foods to create synbiotic results. Good examples of synbiotic food pairs include yogurt and kefir, legumes and pickles (sour ones), feta cheese and onions, or kombucha with Chia seeds.

Now you have an idea of what prebiotic and probiotic foods are. You also can combine certain prebiotic and probiotic foods to create synbiotic results. Good examples of synbiotic food pairs include yogurt and kefir, legumes and pickles (sour ones), feta cheese and onions, or kombucha with Chia seeds. However, you might not always have the time to find out which ingredients to put together. So when time is limited, you can try supplements to enhance your nutritional intake. But, it is always best to eat as healthy of meals as possible using freshly-made versus pre-packaged foods.  

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