Eating Probiotics and Prebiotics For Health

Scrambled eggs with kimchi and arugula

Serves 4

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8 large eggs

¼ cup water

1 cup kimchi

2 cups baby arugula or spinach

½ teaspoon pepper

Cooking spray

Spray and nonstick pan with cooking spray and put over medium heat. While the pan heats up, whisk eggs, water, salt and pepper together. Add eggs and cook until almost done (3-6 minutes) stirring often so they don’t get brown. Add kimchi and arugula or spinach until heated through and an eggs are done. Enjoy!

*Note: Kimchi can be high in sodium so I didn’t add any to the dish. You can find low sodium ones so adjust the salt accordingly.

It seems like almost any nutrition or cooking magazine I pick up these days has an article about probiotics or prebiotics. As nutrition science expands, we are learning more about this symbiotic relationship between the bacteria in our intestines and our health.

Probiotics refers to intestinal bacteria that may boost immunity and overall gut health. Prebiotic is what this bacterium likes to eat so it will be healthy and flourish. An article in Food and Nutrition (Jan/Feb), entitled “Exploring the Gut-Brain Axis”, explores the relationship between the gut flora and our central nervous system. Our gut microbiome may be communicating to our brains the foods they like to eat and thus influencing our food choices. We have much to learn about this relationship, but we do know that it is important.

Eating foods that contain beneficial bacterium, as well as, the food that the bacteria like to eat can help increase overall wellness. It is also important to replenish these bacteria in our bodies when we have finished a course of antibiotics. Antibiotics do not discriminate and can kill natural intestinal bacterium. Some of the bacteria that we should ingest are: Lactobacillus Acidophilus and other Lactobacilli; Bifidobacterium Bifidum and Breve; Streptococcus Thermophilus and Salivarius; and Bacillus Coagulans. More information on each of these bacterium can be found at http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/list-good-bacteria-7771.html.

If you are wondering how to get probiotics and prebiotics in your diet, look no further. As always, eating a balanced diet with a wide variety of foods should accomplish this task. However, some suggestions are to combine both probiotic and prebiotic foods into a synbiotic food such as plain yogurt, 1 teaspoon of honey and some fruit of your choice. The yogurt contains the probiotic and the fruit contains the fiber that the bacteria like to eat.

It is good to mix up what kinds of bacteria you eat in order to have a diverse microbiome. I have included a recipe for scrambled eggs with kimchi and arugula. Kimchi is a traditional condiment in Korean cooking, made from salted, fermented vegetables usually cabbage and Korean radishes. It can be found in most supermarkets near the refrigerated pickles. It can also be quite spicy so look for a variety with the level of spice you like.

Increasing our awareness of how to eat healthy can create an environment where well-being can thrive. As always, I hope you will make this recipe and enjoy!

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