Probiotics are foods or supplements that contain live microorganisms intended to maintain or enhance the “good” bacteria (normal microbiota) in the body, while prebiotics are foods (usually high in fiber) that act as nutrients for the human microbiota and they are used with the intention of improving the balance of these microorganisms, according to the Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit organization dedicated to clinical practice, education and research.
The web portal points out that prebiotics are specialized plant fibers that act as fertilizers that stimulate the growth of healthy bacteria in the intestine.
In addition, they are found in many fruits and vegetables, especially those that contain complex carbohydrates, such as fiber and resistant starch. These carbohydrates are not digestible by the body, so they pass through the digestive system to become food for bacteria and other microbes.
Thus the things, the portal Women’s Health revealed that apples and bananas are the fruits that provide prebiotics.
Likewise, the entity pointed out that these are found in foods such as whole grains, green leafy vegetables, onions, garlic, soybeans and artichokes.
For its part, the Portuguese health, nutrition and wellness portal your health revealed that the main benefits of probiotics are:
“1. Fight and prevent intestinal diseases such as colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, and intestinal inflammation.
2. Fight diseases such as cancer, candidiasis, hemorrhoids and urinary tract infection.
3. Improve digestion and combat acidity.
4. Fight constipation and diarrhea, regulating intestinal transit.
5. Increase nutrient absorptionsuch as B vitamins, calcium, and iron.
6. Strengthen the immune systemby increasing the production of macrophages, some of the body’s defense cells.
7. Prevent the proliferation of bad bacteria in the intestine.
8. Help digest lactoseespecially in people with intolerance to this component.
9. Prevent problems such as obesityhigh cholesterol and hypertension.
10. Prevent allergies and food intolerances.
11. Help improve moodsince a direct relationship has been found between the balance of the intestinal flora with a decrease in diseases such as depression and anxiety.
12. They could help improve conditions like autismas some studies seem to indicate that there are improvements not only at the gastrointestinal level, but also at the behavioral level, improving the ability to concentrate and listen.
Along the same lines, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States explained that probiotics act mainly in the digestive system, where they can affect the intestinal microbiome.
This microbiome is made up of many microorganisms (mostly bacteria) that live mostly in the large intestine. When a person eats or drinks enough probiotics, they help protect the digestive tract from harmful microorganisms, improve digestion and bowel function, and may also provide other health benefits.
These institutes noted that in healthy people, probiotics can cause gas, but rarely infections or other health problems, and that they are more likely to cause problems such as bacterial infections in people who are already seriously ill or have a weak immune system.
In fact, according to the Los Condes Clinic in Santiago de Chile, in some cases it has been shown that the consumption of probiotic foods produced a decrease in the symptoms of atopic dermatitis and they have been able to delay its appearance, even for several years.
It should be noted that the expert committee of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) determined that “Probiotics are live microorganisms that, administered in adequate amounts, exert a beneficial effect on the health of the consumer.”