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Probiotics are beneficial bacteria, and prebiotics is food for these bacteria.
Both prebiotics and probiotics are essential for human health. But they have different roles:
- Probiotics. These are live bacteria found in particular foods or supplements. They can offer multiple health benefits.
- Prebiotics. These substances come from types of carbs (mostly fiber) that humans cannot digest. The beneficial bacteria in our gut eat this fiber.
The gut bacteria, collectively referred to as the gut flora, or gut microbiota, perform many vital functions in the body. Eating balanced amounts of both probiotics and prebiotics can help assure that we have the right balance of these bacteria to keep our gut microbiota healthy.