by Lucia Weiler, BSc, RD, PHEc
Prebiotics are a type of food, mostly fibers, that are beneficial for our good gut bacteria. Prebiotics provide the fuel that is necessary to get the benefits from bacteria, which live in our gut and support health. You can get prebiotics in foods that are rich in fiber, but NOT ALL fibers are prebiotic.
Prebiotics naturally provide food that healthy gut bacteria can use. To be classified as a prebiotic, the fiber must:
Dietary fiber classified as having high prebiotic effects includes inulin, fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS, fructans) and galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS).
See below for examples of foods that are naturally high in prebiotics. Gradually include more of these foods in your diet to promote gut health.
Jerusalem artichokes, chicory, garlic, onion, leek, shallots, spring onion, asparagus, beetroot, fennel bulb, green peas, snow peas, sweet corn, savoy cabbageLegumes:
Chickpeas, lentils, red kidney beans, baked beans, soybeansFruit:
Custard apples, nectarines, white peaches, persimmon, tamarillo, watermelon, rambutan, grapefruit, pomegranate. Dried fruit (eg. dates, figs)Bread/cereals/snacks:
Barley, rye bread, rye crackers, pasta, gnocchi, couscous, wheat bran, wheat bread, oatsNuts and Seeds:
Cashews, pistachio nuts
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