This post was created in partnership with Benefiber.
If you’re a regular reader of ours, you know how important it is to give your gut some love. Often, we talk about supporting good digestive health by incorporating probiotics into your daily regimen. But just as important as probiotics are prebiotics. In fact, the two work in synergy to keep your gut happy and healthy.
We’ve recently teamed up with Benefiber to shine a spotlight on new survey data, which revealed that nearly 60% of Americans are more familiar with probiotics than with prebiotics, and about a third of Americans confused the two altogether. To clear up the confusion, we’re going to share some facts about the importance of both probiotics and prebiotics—and how they can help you to help your gut.
Fact 1: Prebiotics are the food for probiotics.
There are trillions of bacteria swimming around in your large intestine, and not all of them are good for you. The good bacteria, you probably have heard by now, are called probiotics. They help you to digest food and stimulate the growth of even more beneficial bacteria in the gut, which helps keep your immune system strong and balanced.
Prebiotics are a specific type of fiber that play a supporting but vital role in feeding those probiotics. Prebiotics aren’t digestible by your body. Instead, they travel down to your lower digestive tract and become a food source for the healthy bacteria in your gut. When the good bacteria edge out the bad ones, this promotes an optimal environment for good digestive health. Win-win.
Fact 2: Most Americans don’t get enough fiber in their diets, so adding a supplement to your daily routine can be a good alternative.
It’s always best to try to get your nutrients through the food you eat. But, according to one study, only 5% of Americans consume the recommended daily amount of fiber. That’s a pretty sad statistic, which is why we suggest a fiber supplement to many people who aren’t getting 21 to 38 grams of fiber in their diet each day, in addition to upping their intake of high-fiber foods.
Even better than supplementing with fiber is supplementing with a product that includes fiber with prebiotic effects—like the fiber in Benefiber—which helps nourish the growth of the good bacteria that naturally exist in your gut while fighting off harmful bacteria.
The great thing about Benefiber is that it’s clear and taste-free, making it super easy to add into your daily wellness routine. You can stir it into your coffee or smoothie in the morning or sprinkle it into a recipe and it won’t change the taste or texture of your food. It’s that simple.
Fact 3: Stress can wreak havoc on your gut health, but prebiotics can help.
How can prebiotics possibly help reduce stress, you ask? Well, it comes down to the mind-gut connection, which is the relationship between our digestive system and brain. The connection between the two is super tight and communication between them can impact everything from emotions and moods to decision-making and behavior.
According to a recent study conducted by the University of Surrey, young women who took a prebiotic supplement once a day experienced reduced anxiety, better gut health and improved mental well-being.
In our pandemic-crazed world, managing stress and anxiety couldn’t be more important.
Here are three nourishing, gut-loving recipes that I partnered with Benefiber to create. Give them a try. Your gut will thank you.
Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, is a renowned celebrity nutritionist, healthy cooking expert, and wellness thought-leader. She is the founder and CEO of Nutritious Life and The Nutritious Life Studio, an online certification that provides unparalleled, forward-thinking education to individuals of various backgrounds looking to establish successful careers in the health and wellness industry.
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