Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are beneficial for our health, particularly for our digestive system. They help maintain a balance of good bacteria in our gut, which is essential for healthy digestion, immune function, and more. While you can take probiotic supplements to boost your intake of these good bacteria, getting them from your diet is also a great idea. Here are 5 probiotic-packed foods you need to add to your diet right now!
Yogurt is perhaps the most well-known probiotic food out there. It is made by fermenting milk with live cultures, which are strains of bacteria such as Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus. Look for yogurts that say they contain “live and active cultures” to make sure you’re getting probiotics. Greek yogurt is a great option, as it is typically higher in protein and lower in sugar than regular yogurt. You can enjoy yogurt on its own or use it as a base for smoothies, dips, and more.
Kefir is a fermented milk drink that is similar to yogurt but has a thinner consistency and a tangier taste. It is made by adding kefir grains to milk, which are actually a combination of yeast and bacteria. The bacteria in kefir can help boost your gut health and improve digestion. Like yogurt, kefir is a great source of protein and calcium. You can drink kefir straight or add it to your smoothies for a probiotic boost.
Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish made from fermented vegetables, typically cabbage and radishes. It is seasoned with a variety of spices and has a tangy, spicy flavor. Kimchi is packed with probiotics, as the fermentation process creates lactic acid bacteria. These good bacteria can help boost your immune system and improve digestion. Kimchi can be eaten on its own or used as a condiment to add flavor to dishes like rice bowls, stir-fries, and more.
Kombucha is a fermented tea drink that has gained popularity in recent years. It is made by adding a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY) to sweetened tea and allowing it to ferment for several days. Kombucha is a great source of probiotics, as the SCOBY contains a variety of good bacteria and yeast. Kombucha also contains antioxidants and other beneficial compounds. You can drink kombucha as a refreshing beverage or use it as a base for cocktails and mocktails.
Sauerkraut is a fermented cabbage dish that is popular in German cuisine. It is made by finely shredding cabbage and allowing it to ferment with lactic acid bacteria. Sauerkraut is a great source of probiotics, as well as vitamins C and K. It is often used as a garnish for dishes like hot dogs and sausages, but it can also be used as a side dish or added to salads and sandwiches.
Adding these probiotic-packed foods to your diet can help boost your gut health and overall wellbeing. Try incorporating them into your meals and snacks to get the benefits of these beneficial bacteria.