Should You Take a Probiotic?

May 18, 2017

in Ask Dr Lisa


“Dr. Lisa, my family and I take our daily probiotic. What is a prebiotic and should we be taken this also? I am hearing it can help our guts, but I have no idea what is or where to purchase it. Thank-you.”  ~ Diane, MA

Today many people are well aware of the benefits of a probiotic, but many are not aware of the amazing benefits of taking a prebiotic. In fact, the American diet fails to focus on the importance of eating both which can result in gut and digestion issues, low immunity and leaky gut causing chronic health issues such as joint and muscle pain, thyroid imbalances, female and male hormone imbalances, chronic fatigue, candida and more.

What is a Prebiotic?

A probiotic is the good bacteria in the gut which helps keep the flora healthy and balanced. A prebioitic is an indigestible plant fiber (fructo-oligosaccharides, oligosaccharides, inulin and polysaccharides) that feeds and promotes the growth of the probiotic. Together, they provide the gut with a healthy flora.

Prebiotics pass through the stomach without being digested,  and once they arrive in the intestines they actually promote the growth of good bacteria (probitoics) such as  Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, L. reuteri, bifidobacteria, and certain strains of L. casei or the L. acidophilus-group. These good microorganisms are very important to our gut health. In fact, they metabolize fiber from many of our foods, producing short-chain fatty acids which helps balance electrolyte levels, improve digestion and digestive issues.

When I am describing prebiotics to my patients, I tell my patients to think about preparing a garden. In doing so, you want to make sure the garden soil has the best components to yield incredible plants or crops. Making sure your soil is healthy will promote healthy plant growth. Having prebiotics in your gut helps promote the growth of good bacteria (probiotics) needed to have a high functioning and healthy gut flora which will create healthy organs and body.

Some Benefits of Prebiotics include:

  • Protects body against heart disease
  • Promotes gut health and digestion
  • Helps repair a leaky gut
  • Improves chronic health issues
  • Boosts immune function
  • Lower risk for obesity and weight gain
  • Decreases inflammation and autoimmune issues

Where to Find Prebiotics?

The top prebiotic foods in my Kind Gut™ program that help promote healthy gut flora are inulin foods such as oatmeal, banana, Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, garlic, leeks and onions as well as, licorice and chicory root. My recommendation is to always try your best to get prebiotics from food sources. You can simply begin adding these foods to your daily food intake. For example, I love making oatmeal bowls and smoothies in the morning that are loaded with banana and other healthy fruits and super-foods. I also add onion and raw garlic to omelettes, stir drys, stews, soups, wraps and salads. Asparagus is an easy vegetable to add in, grill and serve as a delicious healthy side dish.


Some prebiotics are added to foods in synthetic form such as isolated fiber sources which can be difficult to digest. There also are many supplements on the market that claim to be “high in fiber” or a healthy prebitoic choice, but are actually made by man in a lab, not found naturally in food. There are only a few good clean organic supplement choices on the market today if you need more support beyond food. You should always check with your medical doctor and nutritionist before taking them because you should not take something like licorice root if you are on a blood thinner. Therefore, getting your fiber and prebiotics from whole, real foods is the way to go!

Give my Egglicious Oatmeal Bowl , Acai Power Smoothie and Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies a try as they are loaded with real food prebiotics!

Please read my disclaimer and photo is taken by Adobe. This page contains affiliate links meaning we earn a commission if you use those links. We only recommend brands we use and trust.



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