Prebiotics make it all the way through the metabolic process without getting digested at all. Once it gets to the gut, that fiber feeds the intestinal bacteria which is incredibly beneficial.
The gut is in charge of the entire process of digestion, which is controlling everything from salivary glands to excretion. When there’s a problem with this digestive system, it can cause all kinds of issues from IBS to depression. There’s growing evidence to show that a lack of good gut bacteria can throw the whole digestive system for a loop and cause an array of unfortunate symptoms.
One study found that Probiotic supplements increased serotonin and lessened the symptoms of depression. Another review found that probiotics may help reduce obesity, Type 2 diabetes, IBS and other intestinal disorders. Gut health studies are relatively new, so we can’t conclusively say that gut bacteria is connected to all these disorders, but the evidence is certainly growing.
A Probiotic supplement will add bacteria to the gut, but it won’t stick around if there’s nothing to help it live. With prebiotics, the bacteria gets to eat a gourmet meal, thrive and multiply. Though prebiotics don’t technically introduce new bacteria to the gut, by feeding the existing bacteria, it helps increase the overall numbers. Raw garlic, leeks, onions and asparagus are good sources of prebiotics
For some, adding more fiber will worsen symptoms of IBS, or if you’re experiencing bacterial overgrowth. However, the risks are slight.