Prebiotic Foods

Keeping a balanced and healthy diet is key to a healthy microbiome. Adding prebiotic foods along with supplements is a good way to help ensure your gut is getting the fuel it needs. Check out our list of common fruits and vegetables that contain prebiotics below.

prebiotic foods

What are prebiotics?

Prebiotics and probiotics are easily confused but offer distinct digestive health benefits. Probiotics are good bacteria that fight off harmful bacteria in the gut and help establish a healthy microbiome. Probiotics are found in foods such as yogurt and specialty beverages, including 'gut-shots' and kombucha.

Prebiotics are dietary fibers often found in grains, vegetables, and fruits that cannot be broken down by enzymes in our digestive system. These non-digestible carbohydrates act as fuel for good bacteria in the gut, including probiotics and optimize their growth and functions. In addition, when good bacteria in the colon ferments these undigested prebiotic fibers, they are converted into short-chain fatty acids. These short-chain fatty acids are associated with many health benefits including immune system regulation.

To develop a successful gut health regiment, it is vital to include both probiotics and prebiotics. Consuming only probiotics without prebiotics is like planting seeds on cement instead of on fertilizer.

 Some food sources of prebiotics include:

  • Green Bananas
  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Beets
  • Cabbage
  • Asparagus
  • Beans
  • Whole wheat
  • Barley
  • Apples
  • Flaxseeds
  • Seaweed
  • Oatmeal
  • Chicory root
  • Berries

Why take prebiotic supplements?

While these foods can serve as a great base for a gut healthy diet, a high quantity of them is needed to achieve prebiotic effect. For example, you would need to consume 15 green bananas to match the prebiotic content in one glass of Inner Life!

gut health

The prebiotic fibers in these foods are also not as selective in promoting only good bacteria and are linked to promoting not as beneficial strains, including pathogenic (Salmonella) and opportunistic (Klebsiella). Klebsiella is a bacterium associated with Ankylosing Spondylitis and increased intestinal permeability. 

This is why consumers are turning to prebiotic supplements to ensure that their gut is receiving the fuel and nourishment it needs. Unfortunately, many popular prebiotics fibers used in supplements, such as inulin commonly derived from chicory root or dandelion roots, are also needed in higher quantities to achieve prebiotic effects. Many prebiotics on the market can also cause GI distress including gut discomfort, gas and bloating.

The Inner Life! difference

We chose the clinically-proven prebiotic fiber Arabinoxylan for Inner Life! to avoid these common prebiotic problems:

Check out our chart below to learn more about how Arabinoxylan compares to other prebiotics in terms of potency, tolerability in the gut and the selectivity in promoting only good bacteria.

Arabinoxylan (Inner Life!)

Inulin

(Chicory Root, Dandelion Greens)

Asparagus

Bananas

Amount needed  to achieve prebiotic benefits

2.2 grams

5 grams

400 grams (1 pound)

15+ bananas

GI Symptoms

(Bloating, gut discomfort)

Very Little 

Yes, especially with higher doses

Yes, especially with higher doses

Yes, especially with higher doses

Promotes growth of good bacteria

Yes, specifically Bifidobacterium species

Yes

Yes, but also can promote growth of bad bacteria (not selective)

Yes, but also can promote growth of bad bacteria (not selective)

Inner Life! makes meeting your daily prebiotic needs easy. Each serving of Inner Life!’s Peach Iced Tea Flavored prebiotic mix provides 3.8g of the clinically-proven prebiotic fiber, Arabinoxylan. Inner Life! is made with only the best ingredients, meaning no artificial sweeteners, colors, or preservatives or gluten, and is conveniently packaged in single-serve sticks.

And remember, Inner Life! is gentle on the stomach and will not cause the bloating or belly discomfort associated with other prebiotic fibers. Just add it to water and enjoy!

About the Author

Hannah Ackermann, RD
Communications Manager at Inner Life!
As a Registered Dietitian, Hannah uses her expertise in food and nutrition to tell Inner Life!’s ingredient story. Hannah is passionate about gut health and helping educate consumers about healthy eating.


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