Sauerkraut, pickled cucumbers, kefir, Kombucha – these foods have recently gained unprecedented popularity among Hollywood stars. It turned out that these fermented foods can improve health immediately and are almost a panacea for all diseases. Dale’s Natural Foods figured out whether this is true and what will happen to our body when eating such food.
What is fermentation?
Fermentation is a metabolic process that produces chemical changes in organic substrates through the action of enzymes, probiotics and beneficial bacteria, accelerating the biochemical processes in our body. In simple words, during the fermentation process, food changes its composition, becomes easier to digest, and sometimes is even enriched with minerals and vitamins. Probiotic products are considered to be particularly useful since the microorganisms in their composition heal the intestines and everything connected with it, including immunity, mental and psycho-emotional state.
Fermented food is considered healthier than frozen foods, as it retains its nutritional value (frozen foods only have it before heat treatment). Initially, people began to ferment products so that they were stored longer because harmful bacteria do not reproduce in an acidic environment.
Health benefits of fermented foods
Fermented foods have a number of advantages:
- Improve digestion. They destroy nutrients to more simple and easily digestible forms. As a result, the risk of heartburn, constipation or frustration is reduced;
- Help digest milk. The type of bacteria present in fermented dairy products turns lactose (that many people cannot tolerate) into digestible lactic acid;
- Suppress Helicobacter pylori. This is a bacterium that causes many diseases of the gastrointestinal tract: stomach ulcers, gastritis, or stomach cancer;
- Helps to treat liver failure caused by excess fat in the liver cells;
- Improve skin condition. In particular, they help in the treatment of acne and prevent photo-aging;
- Reduce the symptoms of arthritis. In one study, 3-month probiotic treatment improved patients’ condition;
- Treat inflammatory bowel disease. Clinical trials show that probiotics from fermented foods help reduce abdominal pain, bloating, constipation and flatulence in patients with inflammatory bowel disease;
- Help reduce weight. Even if you only eat healthy foods, your body will not feel the benefits of these foods if it is not working properly. That is why it is important not just to include fermented foods from Dale’s healthy foods store in your diet but to make them part of your normal diet.
In addition, in most cases, this food is not very calorie, and this will not only balance the diet but help not to exceed the number of calories you need.
Top 10 fermented foods
Here is a list of the healthiest fermented foods recommended by Dale’s Healthy Foods:
- Yogurt is a popular milk product. It was used once to get rid of intestinal problems and diarrhea. In addition, it contains a hormone-like substance called prostaglandin, which can be a good prevention of stomach ulcers. But this is not about yogurt, which is presented in many store shelves but about natural one from Dale’s Healthy Foods. As a rule, most yogurt types produced by the food industry do not have “live bacteria”. During pasteurization (this is done in order to prolong the shelf life and sale), beneficial bacteria die. In addition, store yogurt contains sugar. Today, you can even buy special starters and make yogurt at home;
- Cottage cheese is an excellent source of protein, calcium and beneficial bacteria. Look for cottage cheese low in salt;
- Whey is the liquid remaining after the cottage cheese has been separated. You can use it in soups, add to steamed vegetables, or mix with fruit juice, fruits, and vegetables;
- Kefir is an excellent milk-based drink that can be prepared by adding leaven to it. After 12 hours, kefir will be ready;
- Cheese is made from fermented milk. Bacteria (sometimes combined with mold) continue to participate in the ripening of cheese, which gives it flavor and texture;
- Olives, picked straight from the tree, taste bitter and astringent. Fermentation of fruits in special solutions, including just salt, eliminates this bitterness. Sugar in the olives are converted into lactic acid or acetic acid;
- Miso, tempeh and soy sauce are fermented soy products. Phytic acid is destroyed during fermentation, thereby increasing the bioavailability of certain nutrients and oligosaccharides, which can cause increased gas formation and indigestion in the stomach. Fermentation also enhances the taste;
- Vinegar. During the initial fermentation, the yeast converts the fruit’s sugar into alcohol and then, under the action of bacteria, the alcohol is fermented into acetic acid. This applies to non-pasteurized vinegar, not the one sold in regular stores;
- Alcoholic drinks. Non-pasteurized alcoholic beverages such as wine, cider, beer contain beneficial lactic bacteria;
- Salted-fermented vegetables and fruits. Non-milk fermented products include all fermented vegetables, including Sauerkraut, cucumbers, tomatoes, beets, garlic, and many others. It is possible to subject to pickling not only vegetables but also fruits: apples, plums, cranberries, and others.
Fermented Dale’s foods are the best way to maintain a balance between beneficial and pathogenic bacteria, provide the body with the necessary vitamins and minerals. Include them in your daily diet, both in the form of snacks and as an addition to the main dish. Remember: good bacteria die during heat treatment.