Top Tips for Supporting Your Microbiome
Our Pre/Probiotic has targeted strains specifically designed for optimal gut health for mama and baby before, during, and after pregnancy. While we wait for your Pre/Probiotic to come back in stock, there are other steps you can take beyond supplementation to support your microbiome. Below are our top tips!
Fill up on fiber
Both soluble and insoluble fiber are good for the gut. Soluble fiber Insoluble fiber pulls water into your stool, making it easier to pass (helpful if you’re dealing with constipation as well!).
Certain types of soluble fiber are also fermentable, meaning they act as prebiotics and feed the beneficial bacteria in the gut. These fermentable fibers are found in foods like artichokes, onions, garlic, and plantains.
Bottom line? Aim for variety in your diet and eat a diverse range of plant fibers from fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds to maximize the types of fiber and nutrients that you are feeding to your gut.
Include fermented foods
Dairy products like yogurt and kefir are full of beneficial strains of bacteria. Just look for options with as few ingredients as possible - check the label and avoid unnecessary additives like gums, sugar, and artificial flavors and colors. You can also find other fermented dairy products like cottage cheese and sour cream from brands like Nancy’s and Good Culture.
If you don’t tolerate dairy, seek out a clean plant-based yogurt, like Lavva or GT’s Cocoyo coconut yogurt.
Other fermented food options include kimchi, sauerkraut, and even some pickles (like Bubbie’s brand). Kombucha is a great option, but some mamas choose to avoid it due to its low alcohol and caffeine content and sometimes high sugar content.
Include resistant starch
Resistant starch is a unique type of starch that “resists” digestion. Instead of being broken down by the body’s digestive enzymes, resistant starches are broken down by bacteria in the gut. When this happens, they produce short chain fatty acids like butyrate, which support gut health by fueling the important cells that line the gut. Resistant starch is found in foods like cooked and cooled potatoes and white rice, green bananas, and uncooked oats.
Limit refined grains and poor quality fats
Processed foods like refined carbohydrates, excess sugar, and industrial seed oils are inflammatory and lack gut-supporting nutrients like soluble and insoluble fiber. These foods can hurt rather than help your microbiome.
Research suggests that stress can reshape the gut bacteria’s composition through stress hormones, inflammation, and autonomic alterations. Stress can also promote consumption of highly palatable foods, influencing which gut bacteria thrive. Manage stress with activities like meditation, exercise, and our Stress Support (for before and after pregnancy).
Limit exposure to environmental toxins
Exposure to environmental toxins like heavy metals, plastics, pesticides, and other chemicals has been shown to influence the composition of the gut microbiota. Learn how to reduce your exposure in our three-part series on pregnancy-safe detox.
Due to the unique nature of our product formulation, there is unfortunately not a readily available alternative to our prenatal Pre/Probiotic. Most probiotics do not use targeted, clinically-validated strains. However, the best available alternative is to pair Klaire Lab's Women Probiotic with Microbiome Lab's Megasporebiotic and MegaPre (prebiotic). We recommend purchasing these from a reputable source like Fullscript.
The best way to support your gut is to look at gut health from all aspects of your diet and lifestyle. Avoid foods that throw off the balance of good bacteria, populate the gut with good bacteria from fermented foods and a targeted probiotic, feed the good bacteria with prebiotic foods, and consider lifestyle factors that will influence your gut health (like stress and toxins).
When possible, supplementing with a high quality Pre/Probiotic with targeted strains helps to optimize your gut health for you and your baby.
Your gut (and your baby’s gut) will reap the benefits for years to come!
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