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Greetings, Eric Bakker, the naturopath from New Zealand. Questions, questions. I always get questions from people. People ask all sorts of questions, it’s amazing. Today we’re going to talk about postbiotics, prebiotics, and probiotics. So that’s going to get a bit confusing, but if you hang in there I’ll explain all. You will soon understand.
A couple of years ago, people started to hear this word being thrown around called postbiotics, thinking, “What the heck is that? We’ve heard of prebiotics, we’ve heard of probiotics but we don’t know what postbiotics are.”
So let’s start with the prebiotics. Prebiotics are basically fibers that you take in through your diet. These are different types of foods, they pass through the body, some are digested properly, some are not digested properly. They get fermented in the gut, basically, and they form a very good substrate for the prebiotic bacteria … sorry, the probiotic bacteria to feed on. So we’re talking many different classes of beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract are going to feed on these things.
The microbiota basically is a term we use or for the human microbiome, is a term we use, encompasses all the of the gut, the bacteria in the gut. So when we’re going to look at foods in particular, this is what I like to talk about when it comes to prebiotics, not supplements like inulin or fructooligosaccharides, FOS, GOS, inulin. These sugars are found in foods which help to really feed off the bacteria.
It makes more sense to consume the food, rather than to have the prebiotic as a supplement, in my opinion, because I’ve just stopped using prebiotics years ago in my clinic. I’ve found they encourage too much gas and bloating in a lot of people with SIBO. So I avoid them now entirely. I tell people to eat the foods. I’ve often talked about these foods, here you go, you can take a screen shot of that. Or look at it, freeze it. So this is my idea of the prebiotic foods. You can see here, all sorts here: brassicas, legumes, rice, sour dough bread, which I think’s a really good bread to eat. So those are prebiotics.
Probiotics are bacteria. When you take probiotics in, you’re looking at really putting bacteria into your microbiome. They alter the pH, that supplement, and it allows the bacteria to really take off, to really grow. Stool testing is quite a clever thing for you to do, to have a live stool culture to see what kind of levels of beneficial bacteria you’ve got. So probiotics can help to balance that gut and get it into a really good shape.
Postbiotics is basically compounds produced by the probiotics. So they come after. Pre’s before, post is after. It makes sense. So postbiotics are thing like short-chain fatty acids, for example, produced in the large intestine through bacterial fermentation. There are many different foods that really encourage that. For example, sweet potato is a fantastic food that really encourages that good fermentation in the colon.
But again with keto, people taking all these foods out of their diet now, and just loading up on bacon, and sausages, and ham, and meat, and all this kind of stuff, I’m just a bit concerned with these kind of high protein diets, what they’re going to be like long term for people. So make sure that you balance your diet, and have good amounts of vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts, rice, brown rice for example. These are very, very good foods to include in your body because they encourage proper fermentation in the gut, and allow the bacteria to make good levels of postbiotics.
So the short-chain fatty acids especially are important for colonic health. They will confer benefits all over the body. So healthy colon, I found with patients that [inaudible] have healthy, emotional balance. I find a big relationship with the emotional state of people and the large intestine, but also cognitive function. The colon is where a lot of fluid gets reabsorbed, particularly electrolytes. So you’re not going to lose a lot of magnesium, calcium, potassium, elements like that, that are required by the body in large amounts.
So healthy bowel, normal stool functioning, where the stool’s not too lose, not too firm, means that the body has taken what it needs from that stool and passed out, basically just bacteria that are remaining, just rubbish. So people with bowel problems often have issues there with short-chain fatty acids. They can get bloating, they can get gas, they can get diarrhea. We always get the weakness and tiredness, and emotional issues that go with that. So I always encourage people to eat these healthy foods.
But yeah, so that’s it for this video. Prebiotics, probiotics, postbiotics. So now you get an idea on what the whole thing means. Thanks for the question, thanks for tuning in.