Probiotics: A healthy and balanced diet

by Stephanie

Want to reduce bloating and have a healthy digestive system by balancing the bacterial growth in your body? Probiotics may do just that, and by either adding foods containing probiotics to your diet or by taking supplements, you will experience healthier, regulated digestion.

Not all bacteria in your body are harmful. According to WebMd, an average person’s digestive tract carries about 400 types of probiotic bacteria that help regulate a natural balance in your intestinal and digestive tracts. They also help maintain a healthy balance of yeast in your body, so when the body lacks these “good” bacteria yeast infections can occur. Certain antibiotics that you may take for infections may kill off the good bacteria, so it’s important during a time of illness to load up on foods or supplements containing probiotics to help boost your immune system. Bacteria in probiotics, such as lactobacillus and bifidobacteria, help maintain a healthy digestive tract.

Which Foods Have Probiotics?

Top foods that contain probiotics are:

1. Yogurt (with live lactobacillus and bifidobacteria cultures) – Have a cup of yogurt with these live cultures at least once a day to keep a balanced diet.

2. Soft cheeses – Gouda cheese in particular, which is loaded with lactobacillus, can help boost your immune system.

3. Miso soup – This Japanese soup contains over 160 bacteria strains and is loaded with B vitamins as well.

4. Milk with Probiotics – Also called acidophilus milk, this milk is fermented with bacteria.

5. Sauerkraut – Raw, shredded cabbage that has been fermented promotes the growth of probiotics.

6. Kefir – Contains 11g of protein and tons of probiotics, it’s similar to yogurt but slightly tangy.

7. Kombucha – Chinese fermented sweetened black tea has probiotics.

8. Pickles – Sea salt and water based pickles contain beneficial bacteria.

9. Microalgae – Grassy green known as “blue algae,” contains probiotics.

10. Olives – Those that are in brine produce growth of good bacteria.

There are also probiotic supplements you can take if you are unable to work these foods into your regular diet. Also consider foods that contain prebiotics, such as bananas and honey, which basically increase the amount of probiotics already in your body.

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