You might be familiar with probiotics, but have you heard of their counterpart, prebiotics? While they sound similar, they’re actually quite different and play different roles in our gut. For optimal wellness, make sure you understand prebiotics vs probiotics and why you need both!
Prebiotics vs Probiotics
There are trillions of microorganisms in the lining of your digestive tract which play a role in your overall health and wellness. Probiotics are one of the most well-known parts of this system thanks to their quick rise in popularity over the last few years! They’re known as the ‘good’ bacteria that promote healthy digestion and support a healthy immune system. Although your digestive tract naturally produces probiotics, many choose to consume additional supplements or foods naturally rich in probiotics to increase the number of good bacteria in their systems.
Prebiotics are types of non-digestible carbohydrates found in fiber-rich fruits and vegetables. Rather than being broken down into glucose for cells like your typical carbohydrate, prebiotics pass through your gut and serve as a food source for probiotics & good bacteria.
Why You Need Both
They play complementary roles for gut health and, with a joint effort, support a healthy microbiome in your gut. Think of prebiotics vs probiotics like a garden. Probiotics are the seeds and prebiotics are the water & soil. Probiotics can survive without prebiotics but those non-digestible carbs are what allows the seeds to thrive! For the best balance, make sure your diet includes high-fiber foods like onions, garlic, oats, bananas, ground, apples, and wheat. Of course, if you’re on-the-go or don’t find those foods in your diet often, a supplement can always help.