Probiotic Foods

Probiotic Foods - Yogurt

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics are beneficial forms of gut bacteria that help stimulate the natural digestive juices and enzymes that keep our digestive organs functioning properly. In addition to taking a probiotic supplement, you can also eat probiotic foods that are a host to these live bacterium.

We all know of the great health benefits of probiotics, however, not all of us know how to take advantage of these health benefits. Below is a list I put together to outline the best probiotic foods for you to add to your diet. I would also recommend buying the organic version of all these probiotic-rich foods.

Probiotic Foods to Add to Your Diet

1. Yogurt

One of the best probiotic foods is live-cultured yogurt, especially handmade. Look for brands made from goat’s milk that have been infused with extra forms of probiotics like lactobacillus or acidophilus. Goat’s milk and cheese are particularly high in probiotics like thermophillus, bifudus, bulgaricus and acidophilus. Be sure to read the ingredients list, as not all yogurt is made equally. Many popular brands are filled with high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners and artificial flavors and are way too close to being a nutritional equivalent of sugary, fatty ice cream.

2. Kefir

Similar to yogurt, this fermented dairy product is a unique combination of goat’s milk and fermented kefir grains. High in lactobacilli and bifidus bacteria, kefir is also rich in antioxidants. Look for a good, organic version at your local health food shop.

3. Sauerkraut

Made from fermented cabbage (and sometimes other vegetables), sauerkraut is not only extremely rich in healthy live cultures, but might also help with reducing allergy symptoms. Sauerkraut is also rich in vitamins B, A, E and C.

4. Dark Chocolate

Probiotics can be added to high-quality dark chocolate, up to four times the amount of probiotics as many forms of dairy. This is only one of the health benefits of chocolate.

5. Microalgae

This refers to super-food ocean-based plants such as spirulina, chorella, and blue-green algae. These probiotic foods have been shown to increase the amount of both Lactobacillus and bifidobacteria in the digestive tract. They also offer the most amount of energetic return, per ounce, for the human system.

6. Miso Soup

Probiotic Foods - Miso

Miso is one the main-stays of traditional Japanese medicine and is commonly used in macrobiotic cooking as a digestive regulator. Made from fermented rye, beans, rice or barley, adding a tablespoon of miso to some hot water makes an excellent, quick, probiotic-rich soup, full of lactobacilli and bifidus bacteria.

Beyond its important live cultures, miso is extremely nutrient-dense and believed to help neutralize the effects of environmental pollution, alkalinize the body and stop the effects of carcinogens in the system.

7. Pickles

Believe it or not, the common green pickle is an excellent food source of probiotics. Try making your own home-made pickles in the sun. Here’s a great set of instructions for making your own probiotic-rich dill pickles [1].

8. Tempeh

A great substitute for meat or tofu, tempeh is a fermented, probiotic-rich grain made from soy beans. A great source of vitamin B12, this vegetarian food can be sauteed, baked or eaten crumbled on salads. If prepared correctly, tempeh is also very low in salt, which makes it an ideal choice for those on a low-sodium diet.

9. Kimchi

An Asian form of pickled sauerkraut, kimchi is an extremely spicy and sour fermented cabbage, typically served alongside meals in Korea. Besides beneficial bacteria, Kimchi is also a great source of beta-carotene, calcium, iron and vitamins A, C, B1 and B2. Kimchi is one of the best probiotic foods you can add to your diet, assuming you can handle the spice, of course.

10. Kombucha Tea

Kombucha is a form of fermented tea that contains a high amount of healthy gut bacteria. This probiotic drink has been used for centuries and is believed to help increase your energy, enhance your well being and maybe even help you lose weight. However, kombucha tea may not be the best fit for everyone, especially those that have had problems with candida.

Other Sources of Probiotics

You can also get beneficial bacteria by taking a probiotic supplement. I recommend Latero-Flora™.

Do you have any favorite foods with probiotics that I may have missed? Leave a comment below!

– Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, ND, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM

References:

  1. Instructables. Probiotic Rich Dill Pickles.

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  • DG

    Thats been disproven as a myth started by the makers of margarine companies. People with high levels of saturated fat outside of the us have lower risk of heart disease such as in france and italy.

  • DG

    Who mentioned white people? I smell bigotry under the diguise of ma freedum…MURIKKA!

  • Ron

    Hey Callgirl, How did you like those mid terms! I guess your definition of a VERY long time must have been two years! I would also like to bet that Brigadier saw it happen in his lifetime! Don’t go away mad, just go away! Demonrats got their donkeys kicked and handed to them big time and it ain’t over yet! Hopefully your unprincipled habitually lying pandering bath house boy messiah will be out of office and in a prison cell soon!

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  • actionfiguretrish

    what about your ad hominem attacks? they are all over the place. indeed, you appear to play the victim quite often, subjected to “liberals” who you believe are ruining your life and country. you made an immediate assumption that anyone who points out your INCORRECT word usage is a liberal. your nastiness and assumptions are what started this conflict. oriental refers to things, asian refers to people. all my most conservative friends and family know that, even the FOX devotees. even my Brigadier father. where you been? by the way, i’m a publisher and a LOT of crap books make it out there. and anyone who throws out an IQ number as proof of anything is a social imbecile. no one is impressed. oh yeah, 20,000 books. if you were 80 years old and could read from birth, that would be 250 books a year. give me a break with the hyperbole.

  • sam sneed

    In the UK “Oriental” would refer to someone of a Mongoloid race such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai etc etc. These countries are considered “The Far East” or “The Orient”. The term “Oriental” is not considered offensive in the UK.

    Asian in the UK means Pakistani, Indian, Bangladeshi – basically from the Indian subcontinent

    I think its because we have a much larger proportion of people from the Indian Subcontinent than from “Oriental” countries, because Pakistan, India, Bangladesh etc are members of the Commonwealth and were former colonies. So we use “Asian” to refer to these people and “Oriental” refers to the people who would, in the USA be called “Asian” – we have a smaller number of people fron “Oriental” countries than people from “Asian” countries in the UK.

    Confusing, I know! But “Oriental” is not considered offensive in the UK.

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  • dukeintexas

    Brigadier, sir; I have read your comments and I am very impressed with what you have to say. To me, what you say makes a lot of sense. Thank you for the information you shared. Just wanted to mention that I am Asian and take no offense to the Oriental remarks. I think some have made them to be like wow!?, pivotal in hearing what you really want to share.
    I am and have been a life-long Dem, and take no offense to anything you’ve said as being politically offensive in anyway; I get what you’re saying and agree whole heartedly.
    Again, my thanks for your very valuable information.

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  • Country Boy

    I am a miso addict and eat it in some form a few times a week. A great probiotic and, if you add a few hot chilies to the dish, it’s wonderful. Can be used in dishes other than soup…for example, a miso and chili stir-fry with tons of veggies is guaranteed to put the guts in order!

    I hate to cloud an issue with facts, but I lived and worked in Japan for over 6 years. Did extensive travel duty through most of the Asian countries. Many of the locals I met had no problem with the “O” word and in fact, many would refer to themselves as “Orientals” in conversations in which we would be discussing cultural differences.

    I am not sure how the use of the “Oriental” could be offensive to people in Asia, but I suppose if one looked hard enough, they could probably dig up a few.

  • Tupac

    You’re a racist low life. End of story. Your life is spent being a keyboard warrior in random threads. You can’t accept that the world doesn’t revolve around you and that makes your pathetic self butt hurt.

  • hai

    i dont eat curd and i frequently catch cold.Can i find a substitute for yogurt??

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  • Gargamel

    Negro is nothing more than the Latin (Spanish) translation of black. I am a part of a miniscule minority (I may very well be the only one!) who loathes being referred to as ‘black’. As a centuries-old ubiquitous label that I myself used until the past few years, I stop well short of being offended with the term however.

    The label “black” is a major contributor to the negative stigma attached to Americans (and other nationalities) of African descent worldwide. Not only is it descriptively illogical (my skin is not black it is brown, and many other “blacks” are tan, white, etc.) it is representative of all things negative concerning life in general. These things are too numerous to discus in this post and it would take a lifetime to realize and 99% of human beings never will.

    Are there some very dark brown people in Africa? Yes. What are they? Are they Zimbabwean, Kenyan, Monrovian, Egyptian, Ethiopian, Moroccan, Sudanese, etc., etc., etc.?

    Instead of being given an identity such as a Dane, Greek, Italian, German, Spaniard, Scot or any other number of European nationalities, Americans of African descent are simply called “black”. If I must be referred to by the color of my skin, why not call it as it actually is? You don’t call a green light pole orange do you?

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