food for the superheroes in you.
When we think of the body’s immune system, our natural defence from pathogens, white blood cells are usually the only thing that come into our mind. Little do we know there is actually a large number of living organisms, a number larger than the total cells in our body, that are preventing harmful microbes from breaking into our cells and tissues. They are the friendly organisms inside us commonly known as probiotics, and they act just like superheroes.
Like all other brave souls, this army of superheroes require food to thrive and that food particularly, is prebiotics. A non-digestible plant fibre, prebiotics is the very thing that feeds and nourishes these friendly organisms that are protecting us. It acts as a fertiliser for the them, making sure that they are strong and always ready to battle, whenever needed.
There are roughly 500 to 1000 species of bacteria living in the human gut, each playing a role in part of the complex system in our body.
Without food, these population of tiny superheroes will dwindle, leaving us defenceless and vulnerable. Soon enough our body will be taken over by pathogens that bring countless of diseases, infections and allergies. By making sure that our superheroes is well fed and nourished, we can be assured that we decrease the risks of having heart diseases, high cholesterol level, hormonal imbalance, and even cancer.
First off, there are roughly 100 trillion bacteria living inside our body and gut alone.
However, not all of them are our superheroes. There are bad guys lingering here and there, and more are coming in along with the food we eat or through the environment we live in.
That said, a golden ratio of good and bad bacteria is very important for optimal health. In order for our body to perform at its best, we should 85% of good bacteria, whereas only a 15% of bad bacteria.
You can guess how important probiotics really are. Without probiotics, the good bacteria, no one will protect us against the harmful pathogens.
If there is a lack of dietary fibre in our diet, or when threatened by other environmental threats such as the use of antibiotics, the population of probiotics will dwindle. If our superheroes do not survive, not only our digestive system starts to malfunction, our health will also begin to deteriorate.
Probiotics maintain the natural balance of organisms in the intestines. Bacterial imbalance can lead more than 25 different types of diseases and syndromes which includes Alzheimer's, arteriosclerosis, depression and rheumatism.
According to World Health Organisation and Journal Nutrition published on March 2013, lack of probiotics has shown to have impact on our cholesterol levels as well.
Studies have shown that by having weak or diminishing number of probiotics in us can increase our overall cholesterol level as much as 67%. Not only that, having imbalance ratio of probiotics and bad bacteria in our body bears a high possibility of decreasing our high-density lipoprotein (HDL) level, known as the "good" cholesterol up to 88%.
As what was recorded in British Journal of Nutrition, our immune system will only flourish with strong army of probiotics present in us.
Low levels of these superheroes will decrease our body's immune response in term of its effectiveness by 50%, resulting in higher chances of infections in our upper respiratory.
who should consume prebiotics?
Great for kids, growing teenagers, motivated young adults, hardworking adults and the honourable seniors in life; everybody except only for babies under 12 months. Prebiotics is especially good for:
People with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
People suffering from constipation.
People suffering from diarrhoea.
People suffering from allergies.
Patients undergoing chemotherapy.
People with cardiovascular problems such as blood pressure, cholesterol and heart problems.
People suffering from osteoporosis.
People who are taking antibiotics.