Inulin is a soluble fiber found in many common foods such as wheat, garlic, and raisins albeit in small quantities. Our modern diet provides us with around 2 – 3 grams of inulin a day, but our ancestors ate 15-20 grams daily because they ate more roots and tubers where inulin concentration is greatest.
Chicory root contains the highest amount of inulin compared to hundreds of commonly eaten foods that contain inulin, . The good news for Teeccino drinkers is that a substantial amount of inulin from chicory, 650 mg in each cup, is naturally extracted during brewing with hot water.
Inulin Supports Beneficial Digestive Flora
Inulin is called a prebiotic because it supports a healthy population of beneficial microflora, called probiotics, that live in the large intestines helping to digest your food. Studies show that a strong population of probiotics is necessary for good digestive health.
Many food manufacturers are adding inulin that is commercially extracted from chicory root to everything from baked goods to yogurt. In yogurt, inulin supports the effectiveness of the probiotics such as the bifidobacteria that make yogurt so healthy for us.
Beneficial microflora increase the efficiency of digesting your food plus increase the production and absorption of B vitamins. They may also affect immune functions that further promote good health. Supplementing with a probiotic that contains live lactobacillus and bifidobacteria and consuming a prebiotic creates a potent duo called a “synbiotic” that helps improve your digestion and your health.
Harmful bacteria have been shown to decrease in population after an increased inulin intake supports the healthy digestive flora to become dominant. Inulin creates a climate in the colon that prevents harmful bacteria from growing such as E. coli and salmonella.
Constipation can be a problem for some people when weaning themselves off of caffeine because they are used to depending on its purgative effects on the colon. Inulin supports healthy elimination by increasing the bulk of the stool and promoting regularity. Studies show that inulin helps relieve constipation.
Inulin also affects the cells in the colon by increasing their ability to absorb minerals. Studies show enough inulin in the diet can increase calcium absorption as much as 20%. On the other hand, coffee has been shown to cause the elimination of minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium in the urine. Drinking Teeccino provides potassium and its inulin content may help the colon to absorb more minerals.
Some people can experience gas when first consuming higher quantities of inulin. If this happens to you, take a probiotic supplement and continue gradually increasing your intake of inulin. Gas and bloating usually resolves itself in a week or so when the healthy digestive microflora become established and eliminate the bad bacteria that cause gas.