We are so happy that everyone is talking about fermented foods. Fermented foods are high in good bacteria that help digestion and gut health. And taste great!
Almost every culture in the world has its own traditional fermented foods. Known to have unique health properties, fermented foods started out being a way to preserve foods from harvest time over the cold days of winter.
As a fundraiser for Diabetes Auckland our October 17th 2016 workshop is all about the truth behind fermented foods. More information here!
Here are 4 truths you should know about fermented foods.
1. Lose more weight with Kimchi
Kimchi is cabbage fermented with garlic, ginger and chilli. It has a bit of a kick! Kimchi is a traditional Korean dish served at most meals.
In studies Kimchi has been shown to help weight loss. How does it do it? The bacteria in kimchi changes gut bacteria to favour bacteria common in lean (not overweight) people. These bacteria change how the body harvests energy and supports weight loss.
What can you do? Kimchi can be bought in health food stores and some supermarkets. Have a tablespoon of spicy kimchi at lunch and dinner. Delicious stirred in to soup or salad or served on the side.
Want to make your own? Click here
Support Kiwi made and buy some from Be Nourished or Living Goodness
2. Kombucha and diabetes
Kombucha is fermented black tea, traditional to Asia and Russia.
Research on animals has shown that drinking kombucha regularly can change enzyme activity that can reduce blood sugar rises after meals. It does this by reducing the amount of glucose that is absorbed during digestion.
How does it do this? Kombucha is high in antioxidants, polyphenols and organic acids that all affect digestion.
But wait. Commercially produced kombucha is often higher in sugar than kombucha you make yourself. Get the best health benefits by brewing your own.
We always have loads of kombucha cultures to give away. If you are in Auckland and would like some just get in touch.
3. Constipated? Drink kefir
Milk kefir tastes like a slightly sour, fizzy drinking yoghurt. Popular in India and the Middle East, milk is fermented using clumps of bacteria that look strangely like mini cabbages. Milk kefir contains a whole range of beneficial bacteria and yeasts.
Research from Turkey shows that drinking 500ml of milk kefir a day can help treat constipation.
Stop! Before you go sipping away on 500ml of milk kefir each day! Always start fermented foods slowly. Start with 100ml kefir and work your way up to 500ml over 10 days.
Contact us if you are in Auckland and would like some milk kefir grains
4. Cabbage! Why cabbage?
For the best bacteria you can’t go past fermented cabbage products such as Sauerkraut and Kimchi. But why is this?
Bacteria that hide in the folds of cabbage leaves convert natural sugars to lactic acid. Cabbage-based fermented foods are known to be high in Lactobacillus plantarum which is a superstar of the good-bacteria club.
The bacteria found in fermented cabbage can help improve irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and reduce depression. Find it hard to digest cabbage? Don’t worry, fermentation makes cabbage easier to digest and so even the most tender tummies can manage it.
Curious about fermented foods?
Come along to one of our fermented foods workshops to learn more and taste some fermented foods.
Aloulou, A., Hamden, K., Elloumi, D., Ali, M. B., Hargafi, K., Jaouadi, B., Ayadi, F., Elfeki, A. & Ammar, E. 2012. Hypoglycemic and antilipidemic properties of kombucha tea in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 12, 63.
Bourrie, B. C., Willing, B. P. & Cotter, P. D. 2016. The Microbiota and Health Promoting Characteristics of the Fermented Beverage Kefir. Frontiers in microbiology, 7.
Chakravorty, S., Bhattacharya, S., Chatzinotas, A., Chakraborty, W., Bhattacharya, D. & Gachhui, R. 2016. Kombucha tea fermentation: Microbial and biochemical dynamics. International journal of food microbiology, 220, 63-72.
Han, K., Bose, S., Wang, J. h., Kim, B. S., Kim, M. J., Kim, E. J. & Kim, H. 2015. Contrasting effects of fresh and fermented kimchi consumption on gut microbiota composition and gene expression related to metabolic syndrome in obese Korean women. Molecular nutrition & food research, 59, 1004-1008.
Turan, İ., Dedeli, Ö., Bor, S. & İlter, T. 2014. Effects of a Kefir supplement on symptoms, colonic transit, and bowel satisfaction score in patients with chronic constipation: A pilot study. Turk J Gastroenterol, 25, 650-6.
Katrina Pace, Dietitian
Gut bugs fascinate me. Diet and gut bugs intrigue me. Cooking is essential. Add them all together and you get a fairly interesting opinion on life! In my humble opinion.