Probiotics vs prebiotics: which ‘biotic’ is key to weight loss?
Nutritionist Zoe Dent decodes probiotics and prebiotics, both of which we need for a bloat-free healthy gut and one of which could be the key to weight loss
Good gut health means there'll be low-to-no bloating and your fave skinny Frame jeans will zip up without any major tummy gymnastics/breath-holding moves. But how do you get to the ideal state of gut health where your digestion is clicking along so well it doesn't puff up, go on strike and basically freak out every time food comes its way?
Apparently it's all about the 'biotics' - probiotics and prebiotics. But what exactly are they and how do we get them into our lives (immediately)?
Probiotics are, according to WebMD, "...live bacteria and yeasts that are good for health, especially your digestive system. Probiotics are often called 'good' or 'helpful' bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy." They're actually already in your body but you can add to the supply cupboard with foods and drinks containing probiotics like yoghurt, fermented vegies (kimchi) and kombucha.
As for prebiotics, Find Your Glow nutritionist Zoe Dent says, "I believe prebiotics are actually almost more important than probiotics to gut health. Why? Prebiotics are non-digestible high fibre compounds that pass through the gastrointestinal tract undigested until they reach the colon where they essentially act as nutrient sources, or "fuel," for your beneficial bacteria."
Zoe further adds, "Although probiotics are essential to help re-establish these beneficial bacteria - especially... post antibiotics - the only way to maintain your existing levels of good bacteria is by feeding them prebiotics." Who knew we needed to 'feed' our good bacteria?
"Prebiotics are therefore essential for good gut health, and thus our immune system, and our mental health as your gut is where your happy hormones are made. Recent studies have even demonstrated that animals given prebiotics produce less ghrelin, the body's signal to the brain that it's time to eat, indicating that prebiotics could play a role in weight loss or maintenance," says Zoe.
Scroll through for Zoe's best tips for getting prebiotics into your diet:
Zoe runs eight-week cleanse programs with Kellie Prieur from HeartGlow Yoga which includes a cleansing wholefoods plan, weekly meditation, yoga sequences and an educational e-book, for details: findyourglow.com.au/cleanse-program
You can also follow Zoe on Insta @findyourglow_nutrition
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