Weight Loss Diet using Probiotics

As those of you who have traveled know, the preparation of foods you eat for your meals can be very different that what your body is used to back home. Although generally I have very few difficulties with Mexican foods, this morning I would have given anything for a big bowl of plain yogurt to ease the digestive system. Back at home I eat yogurt every day. I try to have a couple of tablespoons before every meal or eat a small bowl as a snack or with breakfast. Either way, I have found that my digestive system has functioned better with the addition of yogurt in my daily diet.

Probiotics, which are bacteria commonly found in yogurt, improve digestive health and metabolism making them an excellent addition to any weight loss diet.

Probiotics, which are bacteria commonly found in yogurt, improve digestive health and metabolism making them an excellent addition to any weight loss diet.

There are many health benefits to eating yogurt, but the most important one is that it is an excellent source of probiotics.  Probiotics are bacteria that are known to help with health and they can also help with weight loss as well. You may not want to think about it, but there are bacteria inside of your body that work with and against your system. Probiotic bacteria, generally either of the Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium genera of bacteria, are the good guys that work to improve digestive health. If you do not have enough of the good bacteria in your digestive system (or in other areas of the body where they are welcome) you could suffer as a result. Your system is not going to work correctly as it is overrun with unhealthy bacteria. Some people find that eating foods or supplements with probiotics helps them feel more balanced and healthy. You can also find probiotics under the name of acidophilus in some stores. These supplements should be taken as directed and will work to kill off and balance out the bad bacteria you have in your system for better overall health as well as the benefit of easier weight loss.

While probiotics were first only thought to help the digestive system when things were not as they should be, some now believe that a weight loss diet using probiotics can be a healthy approach to losing weight. In fact, the weight loss someone experiences with probiotics is actually because those good bacteria are doing their job as they should. Not only does the digestive system work more efficiently and in tune with the body, but the operation of the thyroid is optimized, which improves metabolism making it even easier to lose extra weight.

When shopping around for probiotic foods or supplements to buy you will likely come across the terms CFU, prebiotics and synbiotics. CFU stands for “colony forming unit” and is a term used to describe one live bacteria cell that has been made dormant and must be reactivated following ingestion. CFU’s are most commonly used in probiotic supplements that come in pill form. Prebiotics are ingredients in foods that assist the growth of probiotic bacteria and also their activity. The most common forms of prebiotics are inulin and fructo-oligosaccharides (FOS). Finally, synbiotics are foods or supplements that contain both a prebiotic and a probiotic.

If you want to start a weight loss diet using probiotics, all you have to do is to eat the right foods or find the right supplement. Many foods naturally contain probiotics, however the processing of these foods for human consumption often kills these helpful bacteria. One of the best sources of probiotics has always been yogurt. Keep in mind, however, that probiotics are bacteria that can be harmed when products are processed with heat and for this reason many brandname yogurts contain very few beneficial bacteria. Also, many yogurts contain high amounts of sugar that will negatively impact your weight loss plans. For both of these reasons, it is recommended that you buy natural or organic yogurt that contains “live active cultures” of bacteria and is either not sweetened or contains very little sugar.

Probiotics are most commonly found in fermented foods and drinks. Other than yogurt and other cultured dairy products, probiotics can be found in Kefir (a fermented milk drink), cultured butter, unpasteurized miso, and Kombucha that is a fermented tea. Natural sources of prebiotics include whole grains, onions, garlic, leeks, artichokes, bananas and honey. These days there are also a number of foods supplemented with probiotics and prebiotics, although the actual health benefit that comes from eating these foods verses their non-supplemented counterparts is questionable.

3 comments to Weight Loss Diet using Probiotics

  • Don’t forget all the common foods that can function as prebiotics! Beans are a good source the same oligosaccharides that cause gas feed the good bacteria. BAsically any food with a gassy reputation is a prebiotic. Beans, broccoli, potatoes…

  • Sara Roberts

    I feel that probiotics are a great way to support a healthy lifestyle. I feel that a healthy digestive system can promote the road to weight loss and promote energy throughout your day. I have tried yogurt and Kefir but I have just recently found these probiotic attune bars. They have living cultures in them and are beneficial to my daily diet. Do you think the Attune bars can replace some of my other daily probiotic intakes? Another special factor to these bars is that they are only 80-100 calories and they taste incredible!

  • sarah walker

    if i were to eat only food that contains probiotics wouldn’t that greatly restrict what i can eat and inturn making it hard to maintain?

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