8 Probiotic-Rich Foods that Boost Weight Loss

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Probiotics aren't anything new, but they're often overlooked as part of a healthy diet.

Yes, you can find them in supplement and powdered form (which vary in quality), but some of the best sources of Probiotics can be found in certain naturally fermented foods.

It's important to realise that even plant-based diets can be lacking in this vital nutrient, unless you're consciously adding probiotic-rich foods to your daily eating plan.

Probiotics provide your gut with “good bacteria” that are absolutely key to performing many important functions of your body - including maintaining strong immunity and healthy digestive function.

But did you know that Probiotics can also help boost weight loss as well by stimulating the removal of stubborn, stored fat?

What are Probiotics?

Probiotics cultivate healthy bacteria that live in your gut, keeping the 'bad' bacteria in check and helping to support robust overall health and wellbeing.

They’ve been known to help with everything from digestive diseases to weight control, but they’re not to be confused with "PRE-biotics", which are foods that 'feed' the healthy bacteria that PRO-biotics cultivate, to keep your gut microbiome strong and thriving.

These eight probiotic-rich foods can not help to promote the formation of good bacteria in your gut and assist healing from gut issues, but also to boost and support healthy weight loss.

The best part? All of these eight probiotic-rich foods are readily available and can be flavoursome and interesting additions to any healthy diet. 

1. Kefir

Though it's been around for thousands of years, Kefir is one of the best kept weight loss secrets.

Kefir is traditionally a fermented milk drink that’s full of probiotics, but you can substitute it with 'coconut kefir' if you are vegan or you're following a completely plant-based diet.

Loaded with protein, Kefir helps you to feel fuller for longer, curbing your appetite, whilst restoring much needed gut flora - vital for a healthy metabolism and shedding belly fat.

Additionally, Kefir contains a fatty acid known as Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) which is known to reduce body fat.

In simple terms, the Probiotics and Fatty Acids in Kefir stimulate the release of fat into the cell membranes of your muscles to be used as fuel.

Kefir can be a smart, healthy substitute for other drinks in your day-to-day.  A Drink a small cup full mid morning or before breakfast.

Learn more in Probiotics: Health Benefits & 7 Powerful Food Sources.

2. Sauerkraut

Low in calories and high in plant fibre, Sauerkraut isn’t just a delicious topping for your veggie dog or sandwich, it’s a powerful probiotic that can seriously boost your health and your weight loss.

It regularly makes the top lists of probiotic foods to consume, and it’s tasty to boot.

Sauerkraut is a fancy name for fermented shredded cabbage, and it creates a crunchy and deliciously sour condiment that works in a wide variety of dishes to add both taste and texture.  These days some amazing varieties of Sauerkraut can be found in your local health food market or store.

Add it to a whole grain sandwich with mashed avocado, sliced ripe tomato and sliced organic cheese or eat it straight out of the jar!

Opt for unpasteurised sauerkraut to avoid killing the beneficial bacteria, and find new and interesting ways to add this to your meals. Sauerkraut has plenty of gut-pleasing bacteria, but it also offers a great source of fibre, which can help keep you feeling full longer so you’re less tempted to snack on unhealthy foods. It also provides vitamins B, C and K, as well as antioxidants, iron and manganese.

3. Tempeh

Tempeh is a staple in plant-based diets, but not just for its protein.

It’s a fermented soybean product that makes a firm patty that many use as a healthy meat substitute, but the fermentation makes it chock full of beneficial bacteria that your gut will love.

Not only are you getting a healthy meat substitute (helping to lower cholesterol and fat intake), but you’re also getting a probiotic without even realising it from a food form that’s different than anything else on this list. The fermentation process of tempeh also provides you with vitamin B12, which is hard to get enough of if you’re not eating meat, and without it, you can feel tired, lethargic, and weak. Ensuring you’re getting enough B12 can help you be more fit, make better nutritional choices, and maintain a healthy weight. 

It's no surprise that cultures who include Tempeh regularly in their diet are among some of the leanest populations in the world.

Learn more in Digestive System: Top Foods to Support Digestion, Gut Health & Healing.

4. Kimchi

Kimchi might seem off-putting at first to those who have never tried it, but once you do, you’re hooked.

This spicy, fermented cabbage dish is bursting with flavour and interesting texture, and can be added to almost any dish you can think of for a probiotic, healthy boost. It’s similar to sauerkraut, but has spices and other vegetables mixed in. It’s a great source of fibre, minerals, vitamins and probiotics to aid in digestive health. It can be a great way to jazz up a healthy dish so that you don’t feel like you’re missing out to eat healthy, helping you manage your weight effortlessly.

Try adding kimchi to all your favourite healthy salads, tacos, pizza, rice bowls, burritos, or even on its own as a side dish.

5. Kombucha

Kombucha is a popular probiotic nectar that’s both healthful and delicious.

You either hate it or love it, but it’s wonderful for your health and weight loss because it almost instantly adds healthy bacteria into your gut.

Kombucha is a fermented tea drink that uses a culture of bacteria and yeast to create a deliciously bubbly and easy-to-drink beverage that can do wonders for indigestion.

It’s become incredibly popular in recent years and is renowned for its health benefits, but it’s most known for its high content of probiotics. Kombucha can help with weight loss by providing you a healthy drink option, as well as soothing any upset stomach issues that can impact your healthy diet.

Learn more in 5 Healthy Reasons to Drink Kombucha & How to Make Your Own.

6. Pickles

Who doesn’t love pickles?

Unless you've been brought up with them, they can take a little getting used to, but once you try them you'll probably be hooked!

Pickles are hotbeds for beneficial bacteria that can keep you healthy.

Pickles are actually just fermented cucumbers that have been pickled in salt and water. They’re very low in calories, which makes them a great snack, but also high in fibre and probiotics. Make sure you avoid pickles fermented with vinegar, as they don’t contain live probiotics. Pickles make for a great addition to your daily plant-based diet, because they provide you the healthy bacteria you need without loading you up on calories.

7. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is another health trend that has taken off in recent years and there’s good reason for this. This tart, sour liquid supplement is a probiotic similar to kombucha and water kefir and can help heal gut issues, but it’s bursting with additional health benefits.

Taking apple cider vinegar once a day can boost weight loss, suppress your appetite, reduce acid reflux, and stabilise your blood sugar. It’s definitely not a magic elixir, but you don’t need very much of it to reap the benefits.  Many weight loss gurus are now espousing the benefits of a daily shot of ACV first thing in the morning when you wake up because of its rapid impact on the digestive system during the digestive/elimination cycle.

8. Miso

You’ve probably had miso soup before, but didn’t realise that miso is actually a powerful probiotic food. Miso is a Japanese seasoning created by fermenting soybeans and a fungus called koji.

The paste that you end up with is used to make a variety of foods, but most commonly miso soup. Miso is salty but tasty, and it’s a great source of both protein and fibre, not to mention various minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Make sure to use warm water rather than boiling hot water when making miso soup to avoid killing off the beneficial bacteria that help you achieve a healthy, balanced gut flora.

Tip: include more miso paste in your diet by incorporating it into salad dressings, sauces, and marinades.

Learn more in 5 Tips for Better Digestion & Less Bloat.

Probiotics are a powerful tool that can help you maintain healthy weight loss, support your gut health, and provide a number of other benefits for holistic, complete health.

No supplements are required: these eight probiotic-rich foods are easy to incorporate into your diet, they’re delicious, and they’re all plant-based so you can continue to feel your best every single day.

Find two or three that you love and make them part of your world.

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