Ever heard of ‘polyphenols’? Polyphenols are naturally occurring compounds found in many plants such as fruits, vegetables, coffee, tea and wine. They act as a prebiotic, meaning our good gut bacteria can metabolise them, therefore increasing the number of healthy bacteria in the gut.

With over 100 trillion bacteria living in our gut, the foods and drink that we consume on a daily basis have a profound effect on the health of our bacteria. With more research being carried out than ever before into the workings of the gut microbiome, we are only now realising the link between the health of our gut and the rise in illnesses such as IBS, leaky gut, some cancers, depression, anxiety, obesity and more.

And polyphenols not only benefit the good bacteria, they also inhibit the growth of the bad bacteria that go on to cause these illnesses. Polyphenols are found in a surprisingly large group of foods that includes dark chocolate, red wine and coffee – though it’s important to note there are downsides to consuming too much of a good thing.

But you can also find these beneficial compounds in apples, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, black and green tea, spinach, hazelnuts, olives, asparagus, artichokes and many more. So there is definitely something for everyone!