The world is made up of macro and microorganisms that interact with each other in order to survive. The term “probiotics” was introduced as early as 1953, it was in 2005, when the use of live microorganisms in promoting good health was the spotlight and probiotic foods have started gaining good ground.
Probiotics can be found in foods and supplements, like capsules, tablets, powders and sachets. Without knowing it, you may have already been eating foods with probiotics. Foods rich in probiotics are not hard to find. In fact because of the interest that Americans took in probiotic foods and supplements, you can find them on your ordinary grocery isles nowadays. Examples of foods containing probiotics include yogurt, fermented and unfermented milk, sauerkraut and soy beverages.
The Korean staple kimchi and fermented milk drink kefir have enough live microorganisms or good bacteria that help promote good digestion. These bacteria are almost similar to those which we find in our bodies. The purchasing of the top rated probiotic should be made from online websites. The bacteria will kill the germs of the body efficiently.
As proven by science these good or friendly bacteria or microorganisms play essential role in developing ones immune system, digestive system including absorbing food nutrients. And since there are good bacteria, there are also bad bacteria, which can be countered with these good microorganisms.
Probiotics are not the same as prebiotics. However, prebiotics, when combined with probiotics actually stimulate and promote the activity of probiotics in our colon and large intestines. The combination of prebiotics and probiotics produce a synergistic effect which is obviously called synbiotics. Whole grains, identified fruits and vegetables have prebiotics. Aside from these products, there are a number of companies that have developed and packaged prebiotics in more convenient forms like snack bars and cereals that are fit for the fast pac ed lives we live today. Now, more than a hundred prebiotic and probiotic foods can be bought in United States.
Probiotics are likewise popular in Asia, where kimchi, tempeh, tofu are food favorites. Europe and South America have also embraced probiotics in their diets and daily nutrition. Baby milk formulas and chocolate drinks rich in probiotics are also marketed all over the world.
If you want to prepare your own probiotic-rich food, creating kefir from milk culture is the simplest and cheapest method. Kefir grains are a combination of bacteria and yeasts which forms grains that look like cauliflower. In ambient or room temperature, soak kefir grains in regular milk for 24 hours. Once the kefir grains are placed in the milk, live microorganisms or good bacteria begin to grow. The end product will be curd and whey.
There are various ways to prepare kefir. The most traditional way hanging kefir in skin bags near doorways, which when knocked by the passersby help mix the milk and kefir grains. Now, some choose to prepare kefir with dried fruits fermented for a couple of days, while others prefer using teabags instead of the skin bags. After which, the kefir is stored and refrigerated until you eat it.
While kefir can be drank straight, the sour taste are not that desirable to many so fruits like strawberries, banana or blueberries are added to make a smoothie. Maple syrup, honey and other sweeteners can also be added to it making it a popular breakfast or dinner drink.