You hear a lot about probiotics these days. And it’s easy to see why.
It seems like hardly a week goes by when we don’t get some exciting news about our gut health. And probiotics contribute to healthy gut flora. Replenishing our good gut bugs in the face of diet mistakes, stress and drugs.
But you don’t hear nearly as much about prebiotics. And that’s a shame because indigestible prebiotics support the probiotics you take in.
In fact, they act sort of like a fertilizer for the good bugs in our gut, stimulating them so they can grow and thrive.
The good news is it’s easy to add more prebiotics to your diet. And I’ll tell you exactly how to do that in just a few moments.
But first let’s take a closer look at some new research revealing prebiotics might not just play a supporting role in your health.
According to an exciting new animal study prebiotics could be hiding some star-quality benefits of their own.
Prebiotics may slash signs of stress
Regardless of whether we’re talking about a rat or a person, stress typically robs a health gut of some of its good bugs.
But researchers say their new study has uncovered evidence that prebiotic plant foods could help us bust through that stress.1
Which not only could can help you hold onto more healthy bacteria, but may also help ease the kind of anxiety that can keep you up at night.
For the study, published in the journal Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, the scientists split up a group of over 50 rats into two groups. Half the critters got normal rat chow. The other half got rat chow laced with prebiotics.
After three weeks, the researchers stressed the rats out by repeatedly giving them some safe, but uncomfortable, shocks to their tails. But when they tracked their responses, the rodents which got the supplemented food didn’t show the same signs of stress as their peers.
The rat’s temperatures weren’t elevated. And when they took measurements of the rodent’s gut bacteria, to the researcher’s surprise, the critters which got the supplemented food didn’t lose any of their good belly bugs!
But the benefits didn’t end there.
Prebiotics could help you sleep soundly too
When the researchers tracked their sleeping patterns using EEG brain scans, they found the rats which got the spiked chow slept better too.
They slept more deeply, and spent a significantly longer amount of time in restful and restorative non-REM sleep. And their REM sleep, which experts say helps us recover from stress, improved as well.
In other words, the prebiotics may help eliminate the kind of stress-induced anxiety that can cause insomnia.
Boost the prebiotics in your diet for better health
Boosting the prebiotics in your diet couldn’t be easier.
Simply eat more of any of these foods…
- garlic (raw)
- leeks (raw – great in salads)
- jicama (raw – great in salads)
- onions (raw and cooked)
- scallions (raw)
- asparagus (raw – great with dip)
- Jerusalem artichokes
- dandelion greens
- apple cider vinegar
Prebiotics are also available as a supplement, either alone or in comprehensive pre and probiotic formula.
Support good gut flora, slash stress and promote a healthy night’s sleep at the same time, with prebiotics.
1. “Dietary Prebiotics and Bioactive Milk Fractions Improve NREM Sleep, Enhance REM Sleep Rebound and Attenuate the Stress-Induced Decrease in Diurnal Temperature and Gut Microbial Alpha Diversity,” Front Behav Neurosci. 2017 Jan 10;10:240
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