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Top 9 Probiotic Foods and Their Health Benefits

Top 9 Probiotic Foods and Their Health Benefits





Do you love probiotic foods? Do you know their health benefits? How much they are healthy? What are the top 9 foods? Is yogurt healthy for us? What are the roles of kombucha?

Top Probiotic Foods
probiotic foods & Their Health Benefits

Ok! Don’t be confused. Today we will discuss everything about it.

There are some forms of micro-organisms that are present inside our gut as well as some foods, they are good for our health, known as probiotics.

These are living organisms, gut-friendly, and provides several health benefits.

On the other hand, probiotic foods meaning those foods containing a large number of friendly micro-organisms.

These foods and beverages provide massive nutrients and extremely healthy options in our regular diet. They promote a healthy heart, toned belly, improve digestion, and many more.

We can obtain these foods and beverages from natural sources, and easy to incorporate with daily diet.

The natural sources are yogurt, kombucha, kefir, kimchi, tempeh, etc.

Let’s know about them, and increase our wellness.



Top 9 Probiotic Foods in the Diet


Nutritious, and healthy probiotic foods are generally, fermented products.

That means, these fermented foods have undergone microbial growth in the presence of friendly micro-organisms, and convert into different kinds of stuff.

These foods are really important for our healthy living. They are:


i. Yogurt

Yogurt is a popular probiotic food, which fermented with lactic acid bacteria.

For thousands of years, it has been used as a part of a snack and frequently used as a dessert.

It is a vital source of several nutrients. Every 100 gm of yogurt contains 88% water, protein 3.5 gm, carbs 4.7 gm, fat 3.3 gm, and very low calories.

The protein of yogurt is either casein or whey. Yogurt also contains vitamin B12, riboflavin, calcium, and phosphorus.

One up of yogurt (245 gm) provides 18% of potassium as well as 12% of magnesium of the daily value.

The benefits of yogurt are quite popular in the modern world.

Top Probiotic Foods
Benefits of Yogurt

Probiotic yogurt improves digestive health. Regular consumption maintains gut flora and may help to treat antibiotic-associated diarrhea.

Friendly micro-organisms, such as Bifidobacteria, and Lactobacillus of yogurt have been reduced bloating, constipation, and IBS.

On the other hand, it has been found to lower blood pressure and prevent heart diseases.

Yogurt is an important ingredient of a weight loss diet chart. People who eat yogurt with active and live micro-organisms on a regular basis are usually shown to have lower body weight and less fat.

It also increases bone mineral density and strengthens your bones. It may protect from osteoporosis.

According to health experts, regular yogurt consumption may strengthen our immune system. Dietary zinc, magnesium, vitamins are responsible for the immunity-boosting effects.

Yogurt can be eaten at any time of the day. While some people simply eat it as part of their breakfast, or as a snack.

It can be used in a smoothie with some healthy fruits.

But those who have lactose intolerance, milk allergy, may suffer from diarrhea, abdominal pain, hives, and swelling after eating yogurt.

However, probiotic bacteria of yogurt can increase the ability to digest lactose. So, put it into your daily meals.


ii. Kefir

Like yogurt, kefir is another fermented dairy product as well as a popular probiotic food.

The word ‘kefir’ comes from the Turkish word ‘keyif’, meaning ‘feel good’ after eating.

It made from cow, or goat milk fermented by kefir grains. Kefir grains provide lactic acid bacteria, and yeast to the milk, which starts the fermentation.

Every 175 ml of low-fat kefir (6 ounces) contains 4 gm of protein, 7-8 gm of carbs, almost 4-6 gm of fats, vitamin B12, riboflavin, vitamin D, and K.

On the other hand, it provides calcium 10%, magnesium 3%, phosphorus 15% of the RDI. It also contains several bioactive compounds, like peptides, and organic acids.

The benefits of kefir are quite popular. It is much more potent than yogurt. It can manage lactose intolerance.

Top Probiotic Foods
Benefits of Kefir

According to the study, the antibacterial properties of kefir inhibit the growth of some harmful bacteria, such as Salmonella, E. coli, Helicobacter, etc.

Kefir maintains a healthy balance of gut flora, and effective at treating diarrhea, IBS, other digestive problems. 

On the other hand, it can decrease inflammation in the body and decrease your chances of getting heart diseases as well as cancer.

According to health experts, this probiotic food boosts our immune system and prevents various allergies.

Regular consumption of kefir can improve bone health, increases bone mineral density, and lowers the risk of osteoporosis.


iii. Buttermilk

The term buttermilk refers to the traditional fermented foods made of dairy. But it does not contain butter.

The bacteria cultures present in the buttermilk are lactic acid-producing Lactococcus lactis, or Lactobacillus bulgaricus.  

Flavored buttermilks are common probiotic foods in India, but also consumed in Nepal, and Pakistan.

Buttermilk provides a lot of nutrition in small serving sizes. 245 ml (one cup) of buttermilk contains 8 gm of protein, 12 gm of carbs, 3 gm of fat, and very low calories.

Top Probiotic Foods
Benefits of Buttermilk

On the other hand, it also contains 29% of riboflavin, 22% of vitamin B12, 13% of pantothenic acid, and 22% of calcium of the Daily Value.

The benefits of buttermilk are quite popular in the fitness world. In comparison to other dairy products, buttermilk is easier to digest.

It is a significant source of calcium, phosphorus as well as vitamin D, which supports strong bones, and prevents osteoporosis.

According to some studies, buttermilk may lower blood pressure. On the other hand, it reduces total cholesterol and triglyceride levels.    


iv. Kombucha

Kombucha is an important ingredient in the fermented foods list. It is also known as mushroom tea.

It is a sweetened tea that has undergone fermentation by micro-organisms.

Kombucha is made from black or green tea with sugar, and certain specific strains of yeast and bacteria. During fermentation, a mushroom-like film forms on the liquid surface.

Not only for the delicious taste, but kombucha provides several health benefits. It is an important probiotic food.

Top Probiotic Foods
Kombucha Tea

The polyphenols of kombucha are potent antioxidants in nature, which fight against free radicals, and prevent oxidative damages.

According to the study, drinking this probiotic beverage will block the growth of cancer cells.

It reduces toxicity in the liver and protects us from severe liver damage.

Animal studies have found that regular consumption of kombucha lowers bad cholesterol, and prevents various heart diseases.

Another study on diabetic rats found that drinking kombucha suppresses the digestion of carbs, and reduces blood sugar level.

When kombucha made properly, provides several benefits, but over-fermented, or contaminated kombucha can cause serious health issues. 


v. Kimchi

Kimchi is a spicy, fermented cabbage product, which is Korean food.

Generally, cabbage is the main ingredient of kimchi, but it can be made from other veggies, such as radish, garlic, ginger, etc.

It contains Lactobacillus kimchi and other lactic acid bacteria.

Every 150 gm of kimchi (serving size) contains carbs 4 gm, fiber 2 gm, protein 2 gm, and very low calories.

It also provides 22% of vitamin C, 19% of vitamin B6, 24% of riboflavin, 55% of vitamin K, 20% of folate, 21% of iron of the daily value (DV).

Top Probiotic Foods
benefits of kimchi

Among various probiotic foods, kimchi is also important for health benefits.

It may strengthen our immune system, and reduces some infections, diseases, etc.

The anti-inflammatory effects of kimchi can suppress inflammation in the body, and reduce heart diseases.

It can also reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) as well as total cholesterol levels.

Regular consumption of kimchi significantly lowers blood sugar levels and reduces your insulin resistance.

The benefits of probiotics for weight loss are well researched. Low calorie-rich kimchi promotes weight loss. Dietary fiber also contributes to the weight loss process.        

So, keep in mind the benefits of kimchi, and put it into your regular diet.


vi. Sauerkraut

Same as kimchi, this probiotic food is made from cabbage and fermented by lactic acid bacteria.

Especially, in China, it is one of the oldest foods. Sour and salty tasted sauerkraut provides several nutrients.

One cup (142 gm) serving rich in only 27 calories, 4 gm of fiber, 1 gm of protein, and 6 gm of carbs.

It also provides 23% of vitamin C, 15% of vitamin K, 11% of vitamin B6, 9% of folate, 12% of iron, 15% of copper, 9% of manganese of the daily value.

Sauerkraut also rich in potent antioxidants lutein, and zeaxanthin.

The benefits of sauerkraut are very impressive.

Top Probiotic Foods
probiotic sauerkraut

The antioxidants promote eye health and reduce the risk of eye disease. Research also believes that these antioxidants reduce DNA damage, cell mutation, and prevent certain types of cancer.

In the case of women, 3 servings of sauerkraut juice per week can reduce the risk of breast cancer by 72%.

Low calories and high fiber of this food may help you lose weight. On the other hand, probiotics present in sauerkraut reduce the amount of fat absorption from the diet.

Just like other probiotic foods, it improves digestion and reduces constipation, diarrhea, ulcerative colitis, etc.

According to health experts, sauerkraut may reduce blood cholesterol levels, prevent plaque deposition in the arteries, and prevent heart diseases.

It also contributes to stronger bones.

Sauerkraut provides lots of health benefits. However, it increases salt intake. So, keep this in your mind if you are suffering from high blood pressure.  


vii. Tempeh

Fermented soy products are vital options as a probiotic.

Tempeh is a high-protein meat substitute, originally from Indonesia, and made from soybean.

It is a tiny cake whose flavor is earthy or similar to an edible mushroom.

Tempeh is a significant source of protein. One ounce serving provides almost 6 gm of protein.

It is extremely low calorie, the same single-ounce contains only about 55 calories. On the other hand, it provides riboflavin, niacin, iron, calcium, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, etc.

Top Probiotic Foods
benefits of tempeh

The benefits of tempeh are really interesting. As a high protein diet, this soy product increases fullness, and controls hunger as well as loses weight.

The isoflavones of tempeh linked to reducing cholesterol levels. Tempeh is also able to reduce bad cholesterol (LDL).

Generally, taking 52 gm of soy protein per day for 6 weeks may decrease total cholesterol by 3%. So, it lowers the chances of getting heart disease.

The antioxidants also found in tempeh scavenge free radicals, decrease oxidative damage, and protect us from deadly diseases.

The calcium and phosphorus of tempeh are responsible for maintaining bone mineral density and contribute to stronger bones.

However, tempeh provides several nutrients, and health benefits but it may not be for everyone. It may generate an allergic reaction in some individuals.  


viii. Miso

Miso is a Japanese food made from fermented soybeans.

It consists of a thick paste and fermented by salt, and a koji starter. This starter usually contains Aspergillus oryzae. 

Miso paste is usually added to soup, used to make sauces or pickles.

It is a significant source of vital nutrients. Every ounce (28 gm) miso provides 56 calories, carbs 7 gm, protein 3 gm, fat 2 gm.

Top Probiotic Foods
probiotic miso soup

It also contains vitamin K, B, calcium, magnesium, selenium, phosphorus, copper, iron, zinc, etc.

Like other probiotic foods, miso maintains a healthy gut flora and improves digestion.

Several nutrients of miso help to boost our immune system and reduces the risk of common clods, various infections, etc.

According to health experts, miso soup reduces the risk of heart diseases. Animal study shows that miso reduces blood pressure, and lowers bad cholesterol.

However, it contains a little more salt but actually helps to lower heart rate and reduce the risk of a stroke.


ix. Natto

Natto is another fermented soy food in Japanese cuisine. It characterized by a sticky, slimy texture.

Traditionally, this probiotic food made from boiled soybean, fermented by Bacillus subtilis.

Natto offers so many different nutrients and several health benefits.

Top Probiotic Foods
benefits of natto

A 100 gm of natto (3.5 ounces) provides 212 calories, carbs 14 gm, protein 18 gm, fiber 5 gm.

It also contains vitamin K, C, B6, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium, calcium, zinc, selenium, copper, iron, etc.

The significant amounts of fiber keep us full for a long time, reduces hunger, and promotes weight loss.

Vitamin K, calcium plays an essential role in bone health, contribute to stronger bones, and help to prevent osteoporosis.

According to a Japanese study, regular consumption of natto helped reduce bone loss in postmenopausal women.

Natto promotes heart health. It reduces blood pressure as well as cholesterol levels. The vitamin K in natto lowers plaque deposition in the arteries.

Same as other probiotic foods, natto maintains a healthy gut flora, improves digestion as well as reduces constipation, diarrhea, and bloating.

On the other hand, natto helps to reduce mental stress, anxiety, depression and improves memory power.

Isoflavones, vitamin C, and K of natto linked to a lower risk of prostate, breast, and liver cancer.



Now, The Conclusion


As we know that probiotic foods are incredibly nutritious, and healthy. They provide powerful benefits for the body and brain.

The provides dietary fibers, which make us full, reduce hunger, and lower body fat. Dietary fibers also act as a prebiotic, and support gut flora.

Top Probiotic Foods
top probiotic foods

The antioxidants of some probiotic foods prevent oxidative damage and may lower certain types of cancer.

Some studies suggest that these foods may give us better-looking skin. In that case, supplementation is more effective than natural foods.

Various vitamins, calcium, phosphorus of these fermented foods improves bone health and make them stronger.

These foods are also healthy for the heart. Some of them reduce blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and prevent stroke, and other heart diseases.

All these natural probiotic foods are generally safe. But soy products contain goitrogen, which can interact with the normal function of the thyroid gland.

In some cases, fermented soy foods may be allergic.

However, few drawbacks are may present, but fermented dairy, soy products, kimchi, kombucha is really healthy as well as tasty.


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