What Are Postbiotics (& Why We Want Them)

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Many people mothers wrestle with digestive points. We’re busy, we’re consuming on the run, and there’s barely even time to run to the lavatory on an excellent day! The tough half is incorporating good consuming habits whereas juggling all of the issues household life throws at us. It may be a circus typically! 

Whereas maintaining a healthy diet and specializing in complete meals is important, dietary supplements may also enable you assist your microbiome to digest all these wholesome meals. That’s the place prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics are available in. 

Haven’t heard of POSTbiotics? Properly, to not fear as we are going to dive into them on this article.

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What Are Postbiotics? 

Postbiotics are the product of your intestine micro organism digesting a prebiotic. They’re technically a waste product of the micro organism. They embrace a number of metabolites, together with:

  • Brief-chain fatty acids (SCFAs)
  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • Exopolysaccharides
  • Enzymes
  • Cell wall fragments
  • Bacterial lysates (combination of bacterial items)
  • Cell-free supernatants (combination of compounds made by micro organism and yeast)
  • Amino acids, nutritional vitamins, antimicrobial peptides, and extra

These are identified for his or her health-promoting results, significantly for the digestive and immune methods.

They could be a shortcut for optimizing your digestive well being. In case your physician agrees, you may deliberately embrace meals that promote postbiotics in your eating regimen or think about including a postbiotic complement. 

Postbiotics vs. Prebiotics 

The distinction between postbiotics and prebiotics is that we make postbiotics from prebiotics. Prebiotics are the fibers and starches which are naturally current in meals. 

The intestine micro organism digest these fibers and starches and produce postbiotics, SCFAs, and different compounds. “Bacterial metabolites” is one other title for them. 

The widespread SCFAs embrace butyrate, acetate, propionate, pentanoic, and hexanoic acid. Butyrate is crucial of the SCFAs. Analysis has proven this postbiotics can enhance many elements of intestine well being, which we’ll cowl under. 

Postbiotics vs. Probiotics

The distinction between postbiotics and probiotics is that probiotics are the precise reside micro organism you may soak up dietary supplements (just like the lactobacillus and bifidobacterium species). When taken as dietary supplements, these dwelling microorganisms produce useful results within the host (you).

Probiotics could also be mixed with prebiotics in a complement to extend the manufacturing of those essential compounds. We name these combos “synbiotics,” as they work synergistically.

Taking synbiotics might assist in the manufacturing of postbiotics. It’s simply that particular processes should happen to supply them. If situations aren’t optimum within the digestive system, these processes might not work as effectively. 

For that purpose, it could be useful to leap straight to the tip product of probiotics digesting prebiotics, which is: postbiotic dietary supplements. 

Well being Advantages of Postbiotics 

Postbiotics are good on your general well being and wellbeing. Nonetheless, some particular documented well being advantages, particularly the SCFA butyrate, embrace:

  • Decreasing irritation – Butyrate suppresses irritation within the colon by decreasing the inflammation-promoting cells and proteins. 
  • Repairing leaky intestine A type of butyrate referred to as tributyrin helps the formation of tight junctions within the intestine lining to fight leaky intestine.
  • Supporting the mucus layers of the intestine – The physique wants SCFAs to supply mucus within the intestines. Additionally they have an effect on the blood circulate to the mucus layers of the colon, which helps digestive well being. With out sufficient SCFAs, the mucus layers can not keep their thickness. 
  • Rising the variety of useful micro organism within the intestine – Supplementation with SCFAs was proven to promote bacteroidetes in animal research, which helps keep a wholesome weight.
  • Eliminating pathogens – Postbiotics have proven promise in defending youngsters in opposition to infectious ailments by enhancing the steadiness of the intestine microbiome. 
  • Enhancing immune operate – Some postbiotics, like butyrate, assist to rein in an overactive immune response, whereas others assist to extend the immune response. 
  • Decreasing autoimmunity – In stopping an excessively aggressive immune response, postbiotics might enhance signs of autoimmune illness.
  • Enhancing allergic reactions – Youngsters with meals allergic reactions are inclined to have a deficiency in butyrate. Primarily based on animal analysis, postbiotics, like SCFAs, could also be a useful therapy for meals allergic reactions
  • Defending in opposition to most cancers – Early analysis suggests postbiotics might suppress the expansion of most cancers cells, significantly within the intestine. 

With out sufficient postbiotic compounds like butyrate within the physique, an individual could also be extra more likely to develop immune or gut-related issues. 

Circumstances which are related to low butyrate ranges embrace the next: 

  • Inflammatory bowel illnessCrohn’s and ulcerative colitis, each autoimmune ailments
  • Irritable bowel syndromeIBS – each constipation-dominant and diarrhea-dominant
  • Colon most cancers – preliminary research counsel postbiotics might even assist in the therapy
  • Sort 1 diabetes – diets excessive in acetate or butyrate supplied a excessive diploma of safety from diabetes
  • Rheumatoid arthritisan autoimmune illness – rheumatoid arthritis (RA) sufferers and animal fashions of RA have decrease ranges of SCFAs in comparison with wholesome controls
  • Weight problems – as a result of an imbalance within the intestine microbiota
  • Parkinson’s illness – the gut-brain connection
  • Allergic reactions in youngsters – pores and skin allergic reactions, bronchial asthma, meals allergic reactions, and seasonal/environmental allergic reactions

These situations are extra possible as a result of the SCFAs steadiness the immune system and shield in opposition to irritation and injury to the tissues. 

So, how can we enhance low butyrate ranges? We are able to do it via meals and supplementation.

Postbiotic Meals

As it’s possible you’ll know from earlier weblog posts, I attempt to get as a lot vitamin from meals as attainable—earlier than including dietary supplements. So, earlier than you think about including a postbiotic complement, check out these dietary sources:

Resistant Starches 

Resistant starches are those who “resist” digestion and supply a meals supply for our intestine micro organism:

  • Leftovers! – cooked and cooled potatoes, candy potatoes, rice, oats, pasta (doesn’t must be wheat), beans, legumes, different grains
  • Inexperienced (unripe) bananas – greater in starches and decrease in sugars
  • Flours/meals: inexperienced banana flour, potato starch, Hello-Maize starch

These may be very easy to include by making potato salad with cooled potatoes, including cooked candy potatoes to a salad, making gluten-free baked items with potato starch, and simply reheating leftovers. 


Pectin is a kind of fiber that’s naturally current in sure vegetables and fruit, together with:

  • Apples 
  • Oranges 
  • Lemons
  • Apricots
  • Carrots

Pectin has naturally gelling capabilities, which is why we use it to make jams and jellies. Most individuals tolerate it properly, and, in contrast to the following couple of meals parts, it isn’t excessive in FODMAPs, or fibers that may irritate IBS and different signs. 


Inulin is a kind of fiber referred to as a polysaccharide. It’s in a class of non-digestible carbohydrates referred to as fructans. Watch out with inulin if in case you have points with FODMAPs. Listed here are some meals containing inulin:

  • Artichokes 
  • Onions 
  • Garlic 
  • Asparagus 
  • Chicory root 

One other postbiotic-promoting meals part is fructooligosaccharides, shortened to FOS. 

Fructooligosaccharides (FOS) 

Fructooligosaccharides (FOS) is a kind of polysaccharide. They’re made up of fructose chains strung collectively. Once more, watch out with meals excessive in FOS if in case you have points with FODMAPs:

  • Onions
  • Jerusalem artichokes
  • Leeks
  • Garlic
  • Asparagus

Meals wealthy in inulin and FOS are straightforward to incorporate in soups. Listed here are just a few concepts:

You’ll be able to even make your individual French Onion Soup Combine


Nut consumption will increase the manufacturing of butyrate-producing micro organism within the intestine.

Fermented Meals

Fermented meals comprise probiotic micro organism that secrete postbiotics.

  • Miso – A fermented soybean paste made by fermenting soybeans with salt and koji (a fungus, Aspergillus oryzae). Some add different substances, like seaweed, grains (rice or barley), and seeds. Cooks will use miso in soups, sauces, and seasonings. 
  • Tempeh – A fermented soybean cake that’s part of conventional Indonesian delicacies. They ferment it with the Rhizopus species of fungus, Rhizopus oligosporus or Rhizopus oryzae. It’s typically marinated in brine or spices after which fried. It tastes nice in soups, stir-frys, sandwiches, or alone with a chili paste.
  • Sauerkraut – Not only for Germans! Fermented cabbage is a standard fermented meals from a number of nations, together with Poland, Russia, and Hungary.
  • Kimchi – A fermented cabbage dish from Korea. It takes conventional sauerkraut to the following stage with different greens like radishes, spring onions, and spices like crimson pepper, garlic, and ginger. 
  • Kefir – A fermented milk made with kefir grains, together with conventional dairy kefir, coconut milk kefir, or water kefir soda.
  • Kombucha This fermented tea drink originated in China and unfold via Russia and Japanese Europe. The unique model is made from black tea and sugar and fermented with a starter referred to as a SCOBY – an acronym for Symbiotic Colony of Micro organism and Yeast.

Conventional cultures have used these postbiotic meals for hundreds of years all over the world. (Be taught extra on this submit in regards to the significance of conventional meals). Nonetheless, some folks have points tolerating these meals. Some are on the excessive FODMAP listing, and others are high-histamine meals.

Potential Aspect Results

Getting postbiotics from meals sources might trigger some negative effects. Examples embrace:

That’s the place a complement may be supportive. These dietary supplements are usually a lot simpler to tolerate than dietary fiber if in case you have compromised intestine well being.

Postbiotic Dietary supplements

Postbiotic dietary supplements are a good way to bypass the digestive processes wanted to create these essential compounds. For those who’ve been coping with compromised digestion for some time, a postbiotic complement could also be a great way to calm irritation. It might probably additionally assist steadiness your immune system.

My favourite method so as to add postbiotics into my well being routine is to rotate on this postbiotic from Simply Thrive. Not solely does it comprise postbiotics, however it additionally contains different immune-supporting substances, like zinc, selenium, and echinacea.

It’s additionally gluten-free and lactose-free, and it doesn’t have any fillers, stearates, or circulate brokers like silicon dioxide. The veggie caps are straightforward to swallow.

This text was medically reviewed by Madiha Saeed, MD, a board licensed household doctor. As at all times, this isn’t private medical recommendation and we advocate that you simply speak together with your physician.

Have you ever tried a postbiotic complement, significantly if in case you have points with FODMAP meals? What was your expertise? Share with us under!


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