Probiotic foods contain live microorganisms that are beneficial for your health especially for your digestive system. Our gastrointestinal tract is home to more than 400 species of bacteria. They form the intestinal microflora that plays a vital role in aiding digestion and assimilation of nutrients. They are also essential for synthesizing certain nutrients. Apart from maintaining the optimal health and function of the digestive system, these microorganisms also help in bolstering the immune system. Probiotic foods are formed following fermentation of milk, soybeans or vegetables that introduce the good bacteria in the food. Consuming probiotic foods helps in maintaining the healthy microorganism balance in the gut.
Here Are The Top Probiotic Foods That Contain The Live Bacteria That Are Good For Your Health
Yogurt is undoubtedly the most popular probiotic food. It contains beneficial lactobacillus bacteria species. The live bacteria present in yogurt help in promoting digestion and reduce risk of digestive disorders that lead to flatulence and diarrhea. Yogurt is even suitable for people who have lactose intolerance. Studies have shown that yogurt helps in reducing lactose intolerance.
Semi-soft cheeses such as Gouda cheeses are another good source of good bacteria. They contain live lactic acid bacteria that have been used to ripen and age these products. Unlike hard cheese varieties and cheeses that are heat treated, the lactic acid bacteria present in the semi-soft cheese stay alive for a long time after the cheese making process.
Sauerkraut or fermented cabbage contains lactic acid bacteria that help in improving digestion and strengthening the immune system. In addition to the beneficial bacteria, the sour cabbage is also an excellent source of vitamins and minerals.
Kimchi is a traditional Korean fermented dish similar to sauerkraut. Different types of fermented vegetables are used for preparing kimchi. It may contain fermented cabbage, cucumber or scallion. Seasoned with spices and herbs, this Korean side dish is a good source of live microorganisms that are good for your health.
Kefir is a delicious fermented drink made with kefir grains and milk. The kefir grain stimulates fermentation of the milk that adds different varieties of Lactobacillus and beneficial yeast to the drink.
This Japanese traditional soup is made with fermented soybean paste. The miso paste may also contain fermented barley or rice. Adding miso paste to any soup recipe will transform your soup into a delicious probiotic food.
Pickles that do not contain vinegar are loaded with healthy live bacteria. Traditionally, brine was used to ferment the vegetables. The process known as lacto-fermentation helped in feeding the good bacteria, making pickles a good probiotic food.
Kombucha is a type of fermented tea. In the traditional medicines of East Asia, Kombucha is recommended to boost stamina and aid detoxification. It contains both bacteria and yeast that are beneficial for the health. This probiotic drink is believed to be a powerful immunity booster.
Sourdough breads are made with fermented dough. It contains live lactic acid bacteria that give the bread the sour taste. There are different varieties of sourdough breads including the popular San Francisco sourdough bread, Amish friendship bread and Danish rye bread.
Tempeh in a traditional Indonesian food prepared with fermented soy. In addition to the live bacteria, tempeh is a rich source of protein, and is widely used as a vegetarian substitute for meat.