The average human gut contains 300-500 different strains of bacteria and around 100 trillion individual bacteria cells in the gut. These bacteria break down our foods and allow for the various nutrients therein to become a part of us.

But these bacteria demand from us the foods they crave. And so we feed them. Some have preferences that are different from others. Some prefer fruits, plant proteins, and whole grains; some prefer meat; some prefer sugar and refined starches. The bottom line is: the ones you feed, you multiply. And some strains of the bacteria that prefers refined carbohydrates, such as Candida albicans, are nasty and can do terrible things to your body.

So we’re going to look at some foods and beverages in 2019 that are beneficial to your gut health. These are foods that either add to a healthy microbiome (the term for the little world the bacteria inhabit), or kill off bad bacteria like Candida.

Old Standbys

First thing’s first: While foods that contain probiotics are tremendously good for you, of extreme importance is remembering to eat the foods that breed a healthy microbiome in the first place. Foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains and less fatty meats like chicken breast. Good bacteria like good, whole foods. The importance of this cannot be understated.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Before we look at foods that contain probiotics, we need to look at one key liquid that actually kills starch-craving bacteria like candida. Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which is the active chemical in vinegar, and which also gives vinegar its taste and smell. Acetic acid kills the three problem strains of Candida, helping to restore gut health.


Kombucha is a miracle beverage because it contains both acetic acid and supplemental probiotics. The acetic acid comes from one of the major bacterial strains in the concoction, acetobacter. Acetic acid is given off as a byproduct of cellular respiration and reproduction. So in a way, the acetobacter that grows in your stomach after drinking kombucha kills the candida.

(This differs from the author of this article’s image of good bacteria eating bad bacteria that he attempted to confirm on Google, but found no evidence to support. However: I think it’s safe to say that the image of acetobacter poisoning candida is equally satisfying, although it would also be cool if good bacteria ate bad bacteria.)


One could say that yogurt is inherently probiotic, since it is made by fermenting milk with bacterial cultures, but not all yogurt is created equal. Also, some yogurts’ colonies of bacteria are DOA when they hit grocery store shelves. Also, many yogurts are flavored with all kinds of artificial sweeteners or even with high fructose corn syrup—ingredients that are bad for the gut biome.

Often, yogurts will list the types of bacteria they contain on the ingredients list, so it is recommended that you read the label. Some yogurts have a label from the National Yogurt Association that says “Live and Active Culture.” If you don’t see this just read the label and often there will be a bacterial strain or three listed.

Fermented Veggies

This is the good stuff. Have you ever had fresh kimchi that almost seems to fizz? Have you ever had sauerkraut that had that extra bite to it? These flavor attributes are all signs of a healthy biome growing on this food. Companies like Cleveland Kraut create products that are rich in probiotics and that promote a healthy gut biome.

You can even ferment your own veggies. All you need is a mason jar, salt, water, and whatever spices you like. Just be careful you seal the mason jar so it is air tight. Failure to do so can result in a nasty and sudden death resulting from botulism. If you don’t want to risk it, you can find all manner of fermented products on the supermarket shelf.

We’re rooting for your gut. We want you to be happy and smile like this author is doing after several days of eating and drinking a plethora of probiotic foods. Why is the author of this article happy? Because 80% of the body’s serotonin (the neurotransmitter in the brain that promotes feelings of satiety, happiness and well-being) is contained in the gut. Consuming a massive amount of probiotics like this author did can result in a calm feeling of tranquility.

Give it a try sometime! You won’t regret it!


Chad Weisman—CEO, Golden Strands Communication; ‘creative type’; surfer on the amber waves of grain; avid concert attendee.