By Nutritionist, Samantha Gemmell
Probiotics are 'good' micro-organisms, generally bacteria. Probiotics can be found everywhere – on our skin, in our digestive tract, and other more delicate areas. They are also found in many raw fermented products such as yoghurt and pickled vegetables.
Humans have trillions of bacteria in the colonies throughout our bodies. These bacteria help keep us healthy in dozens of ways, some of which we don't even understand yet. However, with the rise of anti-bacterial products and overuse of antibiotics, many of us are killing our good bacteria without even knowing it.
Think that good bacteria can only help with bloating? Think again. Research shows that increasing probiotics could have dozens of health benefits, including:
The list goes on. Basically, if there's a health issue out there, it may be alleviated by the right bacteria.
However, probiotics are only half of the equation. You can't just dump a bunch of bacteria into your digestive tract and expect them to magically fix you overnight!
That's where prebiotics come into play. Prebiotics are essentially what probiotics need so that they can do their job.
Prebiotics are a fuel of sorts for the probiotics to feed on. They are usually some type of fermentable fibre, found in plant foods such as garlic.
In order to get the most out of your probiotic foods and supplements, and heal your gut, you need prebiotics. But how can you get that in an easy and tasty form?
Around here, we think cacao is pretty much the answer to everything. New research shows that we're right – at least when it comes to a happy tummy!
Cacao has been shown to have prebiotic activity, helping to fuel good bacteria and rebalance digestive health. It helps bacteria to ferment away and produce health-giving substances such as short-chain fatty acids.
These properties are likely due to the presence of dietary fibres in cacao. These fibres cannot be digested by our digestive tract, but instead are fermented by the good bacteria to fuel their colonies.
The best way to put this all together is to:
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