Top 20 Probiotic Foods
Probiotics are the latest health obsession thanks to their seemingly endless list of health benefits. The probiotics are commonly called as healthy bacteria that provide potential health benefits and can prevent many diseases as well. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and preventing dreadful diseases has always been of primary importance. And as always the solution is two way- invasive as well as non-invasive. Invasive options like intense medical treatments or the application of OTC (Over The Counter) products may cost a bit of effort, time and money. These procedures are mostly very frustrating. As they are primarily concerned with symptomatic relief and do not wipe off the root cause. Ergo, it is advisable to try out the effective, inexpensive and most importantly non-invasive probiotic solutions. There are many natural supplements that work as effective probiotic foods and here is a quick lineup of some of the probiotics sorted out.
Legend has it that samurai warriors once used umeboshi pickled plums to stay strong during battle. It is a salty, sour treat, known for its supreme alkalizing ability and often served with rice, and has become a common staple in the list of probiotic foods. The umeboshi plums are typically fermented for six months and are suggested to consume two to three per week for best results. The umeboshi plums are also known effective in the case of aiding good digestion and detoxification as well as a wonderful hangover cure that combats fatigue, nausea, and other symptoms.
Salted Gherkin Pickles
These fermented tasty treats are also a little-recognized source of probiotics. It is to be sure to select from a range of products that is organic first. Next, it is to be certain that the gherkins are not made from a huge manufacturer. To get the best quality, it is to be recommended to choose a smaller company that advertises probiotics.
Dark chocolates make up for great probiotic foods. Studies tell that probiotics in dark chocolate survived the passage through the stomach and small intestine better than those added to liquid milk. Dark chocolates are the probiotic best friend that people need to add to their nutritional diet.
Green peas are one of the newer probiotic foods that have been discovered lately. The peas raise the level of IgA antibodies in the immune system. They can do so due to the presence of leuconostoc mesenteroides in them. The leuconostoc mesenteroids are a strain of probiotic bacteria with high IgA, this helps to raise the level of antibodies and can also help to enhance the mucosal barrier function. In addition, fresh raw green peas are also known to fight off infections and colds thanks to their inherent probiotic bacteria.
Natto is a traditional Japanese breakfast food often served with rice. Made from soybeans fermented with probiotic Bacillus subtilis natto, this superfood is an excellent source of good bacteria and thus makes up for another great source of probiotic foods. In addition, the enzyme nattokinase may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Kefir is a good source of protein, calcium, and potassium as well as probiotic foods. It is so due to the presence of its high levels of lactobacilli and Bifidus bacteria. These bacteriae help to alleviate the digestive troubles by reducing the growth of bad bacteria and thus aiding in digestion. Kefir is widely consumed as a fermented milk drink but it is also abundantly available as used in several products like, in popsicles, cheese, oatmeal, ice cream, and even veggie-based drinks.
Miso, one of the many probiotic foods, which is sourced from brown rice, fermented rye, soybeans, barley, beans and most other grains and beans. Commonly used in soups and marinades, miso contains probiotic bacteria such as lactobacillus and Bifidus. It is to be recommended to go for Chinese miso over the Japanese ones as the former one contain probiotics in it.
Kombucha is a probiotic tonic that the Chinese have enjoyed for over many years. It is one of the time-honored probiotic foods available in the market. Kombucha now becoming more widespread in its availability is actually a fungus flush with probiotics. It is to be taken in a form drink, as kombucha tea contain an ample amount of probiotic that supports the overall digestion and gut health of a being.
For a long time, yogurt has been the go-to food of choice for those seeking probiotic benefits. Yogurt is a good start, as it often contains only one or two strains of the many bacterial sources needed by the body for healthy gut flora. Studies tell that healthy women who ate probiotic-enriched yogurt twice daily for just four weeks experienced positive changes in brain function.
Rich in vitamins, sauerkraut is raw, fermented cabbage. This tangy dish contains at least four different species of gut-friendly lactic acid bacteria, making it a trusted source of probiotic foods. Studies tell that this specific type of bacteria which is present in sauerkraut might also help to reduce the risk of heart diseases and some cancers. To ensure that the serving of sauerkraut packs its full probiotic punch, it is to be recommended to choose unpasteurized sauerkraut, as heat can kill the live bacteria.
Pickles are a great source of probiotic foods when made using the fermentation method rather than bringing with vinegar. Like other naturally fermented vegetables, pickles may help to improve the intestinal tract health. The gut-friendly lactobacillus bacteria used in the fermentation process act as a probiotic, which help to keep the gastrointestinal tract healthy and they also create B vitamins.
Soft fermented cheeses like parmesan, gouda, and swiss can contain good bacteria that are able to navigate the gastrointestinal tract without breaking down. Probiotic cheese is also known beneficial for the better and healthy functioning of the immune system. In addition, it is noted that cheddar cheese contains probiotic strains of L. casei and L. acidophilus that have ACE-inhibitory activity, which may help to maintain healthy blood pressure levels.
Olives that are brine-cured are an excellent source of probiotic foods too. Olives containing the chemical sodium benzoate is a big no-no, so one has to keep in mind that the olives are chemical free. Like with salted gherkin pickles, it is to be sure to select from a range of products that is organic first. Next, it is to be certain that the olives are not made from a huge manufacturer. To get the best quality, it is to be recommended to choose a smaller company that advertises probiotics.
Kvass has been a common fermented beverage in Eastern Europe since ancient times. It was traditionally made by fermenting rye or barley, but in more recent years has been created using beets, fruit along with other root vegetables like carrots. Kvass uses lactobacilli probiotics and is known for its blood and liver-cleansing properties and has a mild sour flavor.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is great for controlling blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, and even weight loss. The inclusion of apple cider vinegar in the diet is a great daily addition that will bring many benefits — including providing probiotics. It is to be taken by drinking a small bit each day or can be used as a salad dressing as well.
The term buttermilk actually refers to a range of fermented dairy drinks. However, there are two main types of buttermilk: traditional and cultured. Traditional buttermilk is simply the leftover liquid from making butter. Only this version contains probiotics, and it is sometimes called the Grandma’s probiotic. Traditional buttermilk is mainly consumed in India, Nepal, and Pakistan. Cultured buttermilk, commonly found in American supermarkets, generally does not have any probiotic benefits. Buttermilk is low in fat and calories but contains several important vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin B12, riboflavin, calcium, and phosphorus.
Tempeh is grains which are protein-packed meat substitute probiotic foods, made from fermented soybeans that contain probiotics. It is high in fiber and protein and its fermentation process may help the body to better absorb minerals like iron and calcium. Tempeh is also easy to digest since enzymes produced during the fermentation process predigest many of the basic nutrients.
A relative of sauerkraut, kimchi is nutrient-dense and includes compounds that offer a rainbow of wellness perks, including boosting the immune system. It is a spicy condiment which is best known as one of the many probiotic foods. It has a very high concentration of lactic acid bacteria that aid for a good digestive health.
Microalgae refer to super-food ocean-based plants such as spirulina, chlorella, and blue-green algae. While not a probiotic itself, microalgae can act as a prebiotic, which means that it feeds and nourishes the probiotics already in the gut. These probiotic foods have been shown to increase beneficial bacteria and improve gastrointestinal health. They also offer the most amount of energetic return, per ounce, for the human system.
Beer & Wine
Now both beer and wine should not be one’s go-to source of probiotics, but such fermented alcoholic beverages do actually provide some benefits when consumed in moderation. The vitamins from the barley grain that beer is made out of surviving the fermentation and filtering process and can lead to good cholesterol and decrease blood clot formation. And wine has been found to be a potent source of free-radical fighting antioxidants.