An Introduction to Probiotics and Prebiotics

By Leon Vance

Before we can talk about Pro and Prebiotics, thet meaning of the term “gut” used here should be explained in more detail”. The “gut” is a large term for the organs that make up your digestive system. These organs include the stomach, small intestine, and large intestine. 

The “gut” is a large term for the organs that make up your digestive system. 

Prebiotics and Probiotics

More than 100 trillion microbes live in your gut, which is about equal to the total number of “human” cells in your body! Although they have evolved to live in symbiosis with your body, most of these microorganisms originated outside of the human body, and were thought to have first been introduced to multicellular organisms when life was first evolving on Earth. These microbes live in close contact with your nervous system, and almost constantly relay information about their condition to the brain. Some scientists classify the gut as its own nervous system — the Enteric Nervous System —  or “second brain”. Although we often think of the digestive system as just a series of organs, it is important to take care of them in the same way you take care of your brain. Being more conscious of what you consume is an important part of this process. In particular, it is important to look for probiotics and prebiotics. 

Some scientists classify the gut as its own nervous system — the Enteric Nervous System —  or “second brain”.

Probiotics

Probiotics are foods that contain microorganisms that positively contribute to your gut microbiome. These live cultures of bacteria are specially cultivated through the process of fermentation. Some examples of foods that contain probiotics are yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kanji, pickles, and kombucha. Kombucha is a great source of probiotics as it is a beverage both delicious and portable. If you have a moment of break or free time, a few sips of kombucha can be just the thing to re energize your body. 

 Some examples of foods that contain probiotics are yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kanji, pickles, and kombucha.

While detrimental side effects of taking probiotics are uncommon, it is important to note that everyone’s body — including their gut microbiome — is different and can react differently to the same substance. Fermentation conditions such as temperature and humidity can drastically affect how a probiotic bacteria culture develops, so it is no understatement to say that every probiotic product is one of a kind. There is still a lot we do not fully understand about probiotics, but they may have even greater benefits than we currently know. 

There is still a lot we do not fully understand about probiotics, but they may have even greater benefits than we currently know. 

Prebiotic Bananas

 

Prebiotic foods do not contain living organisms, but they greatly contribute to the health of your gut microbiome by providing nutrients to the microorganisms that live there, including probiotics. Prebiotics serve as a healthy source of energy for both you and your gut microbiome. Prebiotics are found in vegetables, whole grains, allium plants, apple cider vinegar, green bananas, cooked and cooled potatoes, and Atmosphere’s specialty cheesecake. While nutritious on their own, our homemade cheesecakes also serve as a great accompaniment to our kombucha.

Prebiotics are found in vegetables, whole grains, allium plants, apple cider vinegar, green bananas, cooked and cooled potatoes, and Atmosphere’s specialty cheesecake.

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