Probiotics and Prebiotics

Learn what we have to say about probiotics and prebiotics.

Scrabble tiles spelling the word probiotic
Monday, June 13, 2022

What are probiotics and prebiotics?

Probiotics are the good bacteria that we can replenish through the foods we eat and are available as supplements.

Prebiotics are fiber-rich foods that help probiotics flourish in the gut.  They provide a steady, nutrient-rich diet for our good gut bacteria.

What are microbiota?

The community of bacteria and microorganisms is called our microbiota. The human digestive tract is home to more than 1000 species of bacteria. Our microbiota can be affected by infection, immune response, toxins, and changes in diet and lifestyle such as stress and the foods we eat or don't eat. Beneficial bacteria help our bodies digest food, synthesize vitamins, and support our immune system.

Sources of Probiotics Sources of Prebiotics
  • Fermented vegetables (sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles, beets, carrots)
  • Fermented fruits (chutneys, jams, green papaya, pickled jackfruit)
  • Yogurt, kefir, sour cream, buttermilk
  • Kombucha
  • Water kefir, coconut milk kefir
  • Natto, miso, tempeh, tamari sauce
  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Banana
  • Eggplant
  • Garlic, leeks, onions
  • Honey
  • Jicama
  • Kefir
  • Legumes
  • Whole grains
  • Cooked and cooled potatoes

Here is a recipe full of probiotics and prebiotics!

Spicy Kimchi Potato Salad


  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 3 Tablespoons finely chopped scallion whites (slice and save greens for garnish)
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped kimchi
  • 1.5 Tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1.5 teaspoons sriracha

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 pounds small waxy white or yellow potatoes


Step 1: In a bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, scallion whites, kimchi, ketchup, lime juice, sriracha, and salt. 

Step 2: Place whole unpeeled potatoes in a large pot with enough salted water to cover by 1 inch.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until potatoes are just tender, 15 to 25 minutes depending upon size.  Drain and cut potatoes into 1 1/2-inch cubes.  

Step 3: Transfer hot potatoes to a large bowl and toss with 2/3 of the dressing.  Let cool to room temperature or refrigerate until ready to use.  Just before serving, toss with the remaining dressing.  Garnish with scallion greens and more lime juice to taste. 


Hurley, Amanda K. The Garden in Your Gut. Johns Hopkins Health Review. Published Fall/Winter, 2015. Accessed August 28th, 2017.

“Probiotic and Prebiotic Foods.” Handout. The Institute for Functional Medicine. 2016. Print.

Probiotics and Prebiotics WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Roberfroid, Marcel B. Prebiotics and probiotics: are they functional foods? The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2000; 71 (6), 1682-1687. Accessed August 29th, 2017.