Role of probiotics and prebiotics in digestion, metabolism, and immunity

Shilia Jacob Kurian, Tejaswini Baral, M. Sonal Sekhar, Mahadev Rao

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Probiotics are microbes that help maintain and stabilize the intestinal flora, resist pathogenic colonization in the gastrointestinal tract, modulate the immune system, improve vitamin synthesis, absorption of mineral salts, and enhance the production of short-chain fatty acids, bacteriocin, and other antimicrobial substances. Prebiotic substances are nondigestible oligosaccharides that influence the intestinal flora by improving the microbial flora’s saccharolytic activity. The development of the microbial flora starts at birth and gets altered with varying physiological changes that occur with aging. Multiple studies have shown that probiotics and prebiotics help manage several disease conditions, including infectious and inflammatory conditions. Their roles in metabolism have also been well explored. This chapter briefly discusses the role of probiotics and prebiotics in digestion, metabolism, and immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNutrition and Functional Foods in Boosting Digestion, Metabolism and Immune Health
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9780128212325
ISBN (Print)9780128232194
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Health Professions(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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