Probiotic foods: everything you need to know

Probiotics have been in the spotlight for a while now. These are live microorganisms that have health benefits. They are beneficial bacteria that have powerful benefits for the brain and the body. They help improve heart health, digestive health, and reduce depression. There is evidence that probiotics also improve your skin.

You can get probiotics from supplements, but you can also get them from fermented foods. Here is the list of the most popular probiotic foods.


Yogurt is one of the best sources of probiotics, which has beneficial bacteria and can improve your health. Eating yogurt is associated with several health benefits, including bone health and lowering high blood pressure.

In children, yogurt can help reduce diarrhea caused by antibiotics. It can also relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

It is also a good option for lactose intolerant people. But not all yogurt has live bacteria; in some cases, the bacteria have died during processing.

Therefore, be sure to choose live and active culture yogurt.


Sauerkraut is a finely grated cabbage that has been fermented by lactic acid bacteria. It is an ancient common food tradition in Europe. It is used as a garnish and has a sour and salty taste and can be stored for months in an airtight container.

Not only this, sauerkraut is rich in fiber and vitamin C, B and K. It is rich in sodium and has manganese and iron.

It has antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which are important for eye health.

Be sure to choose unpasteurized sauerkraut, as pasteurization kills live, active bacteria.


Kimchi is a spicy and fermented Korean dish. Cabbage is the main ingredient of the dish, but it can also be prepared with other vegetables. It is full of flavors and has various seasonings such as chili flakes, garlic, ginger, salt, and chives.

Kimchi is good for digestive health and has the lactic acid bacteria Lactobacillus Kimchii.


The drink is now on the menus of several cafes and restaurants. It is a fermented black or green tea. It has friendly bacteria and yeast and is consumed in various parts of the world.


Also called pickles, gherkins are cucumbers pickled in a solution of salt and water. These are left to ferment for some time, using their own lactic acid bacteria. The process gives them a sour taste.

Pickled cucumbers are healthy probiotic bacteria that can improve digestive health. They are low in calories and a good source of vitamin K. They are also high in sodium. Also, remember that pickles that have vinegar do not have live prebiotics.

Traditional buttermilk

There are two types of traditional and cultured buttermilk. Traditional buttermilk is simply the liquid left over from making butter. This version has a probiotic and is also called “grandma’s probiotic”.

Traditional whey is consumed in Nepal, Pakistan, and India.

Cultured buttermilk does not have any probiotic benefits and is found in supermarkets.

Whey is low in fat and calories and has important vitamins and minerals, such as B12, riboflavin, calcium, and phosphorus.

Some types of cheese

Although most types of cheese are fermented, that doesn’t mean they all contain probiotics. It is important to look for live, active cultures on food labels. Good bacteria can survive the aging process in some cheeses, such as mozzarella, gouda, cheddar, and cottage cheese.

Cheese is nutritious and is a great source of protein. It is also rich in important minerals and vitamins, such as vitamin B12, calcium, selenium, and phosphorus.

Moderate consumption of dairy products such as cheese can reduce the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis.


Tempeh is a fermented soy product. It is a firm burger whose flavor is described as nutty, earthy and similar to a mushroom.

It is a high protein meat substitute and is famous all over the world. The fermentation process has surprising effects on its nutritional profile.

Soy is high in phytic acid, which makes it difficult to absorb minerals like zinc and iron. But the fermentation process reduces the amount of phytic acid, which can increase mineral absorption.

Fermentation also produces some vitamin B12, which soy does not have otherwise.

Vitamin B12 is mainly found in foods of animal origin such as meat, fish, dairy, and eggs. This makes tempeh a great option for vegetarians who want to add a nutritious probiotic to their diet.


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