Ask Jackie: Is There a Difference Between Pre and Probiotics?

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A: They've been pegged as some pretty good for you immunity boosters, but what are pre and probiotics exactly? Prebiotics are a type of compound found in plants that help promote the growth of immune-boosting beneficial bacteria — a.k.a. probiotics.

And while probiotics are actually live bacteria, prebiotics are non-living and non-digestible, acting much like dietary fiber does in your gastrointestinal tract. Both can be found in the body, as well as in foods, and have been linked to treating intestinal infections as well as the common cold and flu.

Although we still need more research to support using probiotics to protect against chronic disease, the good news is that naturally occurring pre and probiotic food sources are healthy — and delicious! Try adding prebiotic foods into meals from foods like bananas, asparagus, artichokes, garlic, and 100% whole-wheat. Probiotics are found in fermented foods. Yogurt, drinkable kefir, sauerkraut, and tempeh are all tasty options.

TELL US: Have you added pro or prebiotics into your diet?

Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, is the nutrition director for the GolfHr Institute.

More from Jackie:

Is Coffee a Healthy Pick?

Should I Try a Juice Cleanse or Detox Diet?

What Are the Sneaky Signs of Added Sugar?

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