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Are Prebiotic Sodas Healthy?
June 04, 2024

Are Prebiotic Sodas Healthy for You?

As many of us know, "gut health" is necessary for strong digestion. Additionally, a healthy gut or microbiome is linked to a lower risk for anxiety and depression, strong immune health and weight management.

Probiotics are healthy bacteria that can improve gut health and found in foods like kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi and tempeh.

Prebiotics are the lesser discussed compounds that promote the growth or activity of probiotics. While found in many foods including bananas, garlic and dandilion greens, trending today are prebiotic sodas that are promoted as functional drinks to detox the gut or even improve chronic health issues. So, are they as good as claimed?

Prebiotic Sodas

Poppi and Olipop are the dominant prebiotic sodas that are made with mainly carbonated water, a little sweetener, fruit juice and then added ingredients like apple cider vinegar or a combination of inulins (root sugars like chicory root), or extracts such as kudzu or slippery elm bark extracts) as the sources for prebiotics.

With fewer calories, only few grams of sugar and no phosphorus, these drinks are a healthier alternative to traditional sodas. They do contain prebiotics, so may have some benefit to digestive health - but so far no studies have confirmed this.

There is concern about the carbon dioxide use to create carbonation, which mainly incude painful gas, bloating and flatulence due to the increased gas.

Additionally, some studies that show carbon dioxide from carbonated beverages create a rise in esophageal pH, meaning a slight rise in acidity. Overconsumption may lead to increased gastric acid volume, which may eventually lead to issues with your stomach lining.

If the rest of your diet is fairly healthy, consuming prebiotic sodas in moderation will not harm, but don't rely on them to establish a healthy gut.

Instead, focus on whole foods while eliminating highly or ultra-processed foods that can lead to poor digestion, weight gain, and interfere with metabolism.

Helping your body cleanse can also help improve gut health and overall digestion. A supportive detox diet is easier for your body to digest and should provide the required nutrients to help your body heal and reset digestion.

4 Tips to Improve Digestion




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