Everyone is going gaga over taking probiotic pills these days.
From Dr. Oz to your neighbor next door, you most likely would have heard many rave about probiotics.
Today let’s look at ‘Natural’ probiotic foods.
I’m talking about ‘Fermented foods’.
Most likely, your grandma and her grandma were making these for the family, long before the advent of the modern day probiotic supplements.
Fermented foods are very important for your gut health and overall wellbeing.
I always advise my clients to include a fair share in their daily diet.
You’ll see why in just a moment.
What is fermentation?
Fermentation is basically the digestive action of bacterial and fungal cells and their enzymes.
In doing so, the composition of the food is altered and it may therefore be preserved.
Benefits of fermentation:
1. Pre- digestion of foods:
This makes it easy for your digestive system to breakdown and assimilate foods you are eating.
It is especially helpful for those of you with weak digestion, as these foods are pre-digested.
So your gut does not have to work as hard to break down the foods you eat.
If you have a weak digestion, you will also want to grab my Free Guide for ‘Top 10 Foods for Rocking Digestion and Energetic You’. Just click to download.
2. Nutritional enhancement:
Fermentation increases levels of Vitamin Bs (like B1, B2 and B3).
It increases availability of essential amino acids like lysine in cereal grains.
Some ferments create unique micronutrients which may not be present in the raw form.
Fermentation has shown to remove some toxic compounds from foods.
In fact sometimes it has even shown to transform anti-nutrients into nutrients!
For example bitter cassava tubers are detoxified of its high cyanide content by soaking peeled and chopped pieces in water.
Another example is of phytates found in grains, legumes, nut and seeds. These are anti-nutrients as they bind minerals and make them unavailable for absorption. Fermenting these foods helps release an enzyme called phytase, which frees up the bound minerals and makes them available for absorption!
Some pesticide residues on vegetables can also be biodegraded by fermentation.
4. Balance the gut bacteria after a round of antibiotics:
Antibiotics are effective in case of bacterial infections because they kill the ‘bad’ bacteria.
However, they also indiscriminately kill the ‘good’ bacteria.
Researchers have found that the effect of antibiotics on the gut bacteria may last upto 2 years!
Therefore, it is extremely important to consume probiotic rich fermented foods to balance the gut bacteria.
Some popularly consumed examples of fermented foods are:
- Many Cheeses
Furthermore, probiotic bacteria have been shown to be effective in conditions such as:
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Vaginal infections
- Reduced incidents of common colds and upper respiratory symptoms
- Lowering high BP and cholesterols
- Reduced anxiety
- Help in allergies, urinary infections, periodontal disease etc.
I hope you can now clearly see the benefits of including fermented foods in your daily diet.
One thing to remember is that they have powerful effect and strong flavors.
So eat them in smaller portions more often rather than in large quantities at one go.
You can also download my Free Guide for ‘Top 10 Foods for Rocking Digestion and Energetic You’ here.
If you have more questions about fermented foods, feel free to reach out to me. I always love to hear from you.
- Create a crystal clear vision for the ideal life you’ll be living in your energized, symptoms free and confident body.
- Uncover the root cause, hidden challenges and self sabotaging habits that may be causing your symptoms.
- Leave this session renewed, inspired, ready to finally strengthen digestion so you can enjoy your favorite foods with restrictions and be your best once and for all.
(*Source: The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Elliz Katz)