Dishes for Digestive Health - NYTimes.com: "...I’d never heard the word “prebiotics” until I attended a talk by the Stanford nutritionist Jo Ann Hattner, who has written (with Susan Anderes) an interesting guide called “Gut Insight: Probiotics and Prebiotics for Digestive Health and Well-Being.”
Prebiotics are certain indigestible plant fibers that have been shown in studies to support the growth of probiotics in the gut. Ms. Hattner has looked at the scientific literature and created a table of foods considered by some researchers to be “prebiotic stars” as well as “prebiotic potentials” (foods that may have a prebiotic effect but require more study). The “prebiotic stars” are high in inulin and oligosaccharides, nondigestible fermentable carbohydrates that support probiotics in the intestinal tract. “The probiotics need to eat, and that’s where the prebiotics come in,” Ms. Hattner explained in her talk...."