It is an obscure fact that eating fermented foods or probiotic supplements can superbly benefit your health. Particularly, fermented foods like fermented cabbage with sea salt and fermented pickle provide the human body with health benefits like lactic acid and microflora, friendly bacteria or ‘starter cultures’ that provide a protective barrier around the intestines. As a result, this bacterium supplies rigid protection from harmful bacteria such as E. coli and salmonella.
Digesting fermented foods also produces and strengthens antibodies and collectively builds a strong immune system. Loosely speaking, incorporating a few fermented foods and vegetables in your diet certainly couldn’t hurt. With that stated, here are ten of the healthiest fermented vegetables and foods. Enjoy!
It may be true that many people aren’t familiar with Kefir, but the taste certainly is very distinguishable. Many compare the taste of Kefir to “drinkable yogurt”. Essentially, Kefir is fermented milk that packs a whole lot of vital nutrients and vitamins. Kefir naturally contains high amounts of calcium, vitamin B12, probiotics, folate enzymes, magnesium, biotin, and vitamin K12.
That’s right. Kefir is a healthy, tasty treat that can effectively boost your immune system and provides additional benefits.
In fact, Kefir can also treat IBS, strengthen bone density, alleviate allergies, improves digestion, and eliminates candida.
Kombucha is a beverage that is fermented made from sugar and black tea. This drink contains an influx of yeast and bacteria, which activate a unique fermentation process as the black tea combines with the sugar. Once this fermentation is achieved, kombucha transforms into a carbonated delicacy, containing healthy B-vitamins, vinegar, probiotics, enzymes, and high concentrations of important acids (lactic, acetic, and gluconic).
Drinking kombucha regularly makes digestion more comfortable, helps improve weight loss, provides energy, increases productivity, cleanses the body, improves your immune system, alleviates pain in joints, and can even reduce the possibility of cancer. Go figure!
Being possibly the oldest raw food in world history, sauerkraut can also be a healthy addition to your diet. Sauerkraut is produced from cabbage that is fermented, supplying you with increased amounts of dietary fiber. Sauerkraut also contains high levels of vitamin C, vitamin A, B vitamins, and vitamin K. That’s not all, mind you. This delectable fermented veggie is full of copper, iron, sodium, calcium, magnesium, and manganese.
Sauerkraut offers a wide array of bodily benefits as well. Eating sauerkraut daily can give a boost to your digestive health, strengthens your bones, and can exponentially reduce cholesterol levels.
You can never go wrong with a few pickles in your diet. Pickles are packed with an abundance of vital minerals, nutrients, and probiotics. Just by consuming pickles alone, you can combat vitamin K deficiency. In fact, just one pickle contains 18% of your daily need of vitamin K, which is a beneficial fat-soluble vitamin in its own right. What’s also great is that vitamin K plays a vital role in maintaining healthy bones and a healthy heart.
However, be mindful to always consume organic pickles. The price may be more than what you can get from the supermarket, but your health is paramount in this case.
You may have heard of miso in your favorite Japanese bistro, but the nutritional value of this food precedes its reputation. Miso is created by fermenting barley, soybeans, or brown rice with a fungus called Koji. Once the fermentation is complete, the product is nothing short of spectacular. Miso is distinctly proven to have anti-aging properties and can promote great skin health.
Miso also supports your immune system, lowers the possibility of cancer, boosts bone health, and benefits your nervous system. Therefore, it wouldn’t hurt to incorporate miso in your daily diet, that’s for sure.
Tempeh is another beneficial fermented food that packs a wallop. Basically, tempeh is produced by adding a tempeh starter (a live mold) to a solution of fermented soybeans. After sitting for a couple of days, the finished product resembles something of a small cake. Thus, tempeh is born.
In addition, tempeh can help reduce cholesterol, increase bone density levels, lower the chances of menopausal symptoms, and promotes muscle strength. Tempeh actually contains the same protein grade as any lean meat and is a great source of vitamins B5, B6, B3, and B2.
Another great and healthy meal consisting of soybeans is Natto, a popular Japanese cuisine. Though unlike tempeh, Natto contains a potent probiotic called bacillus subtilis. This probiotic is known to support your body’s immune system as well as build a healthy cardiovascular system. Eating natto can also improve your digestive health and provides vitamin K2. In addition to these amazing benefits, natto also contains an anti-inflammatory enzyme called nattokinase, which has been proven to be a factor of preventing cancer.
If you want to try a fermented food, while adventuring with foreign cuisines, then you would be wise to try Kimchi. Kimchi is a popular, traditional 7th-century Korean fermented dish made from vegetables which also includes cabbage and a unique blend of spices and seasoning. Kimchi has been proven to boost cardiovascular health gradually. Kimchi also has high levels of antioxidants that can viably reduce the chances of cancer, gastric ulcers, and diabetes.
It doesn’t sound appealing at all, but don’t knock it until you try it. Raw cheese is made from milk that hasn’t been pasteurized or purged. In particular, goat’s milk and sheep's milk cheeses are high in probiotics that can boost your digestive health in more ways than one. This food also supplies your intestinal tract with helpful bacteria that kills anything that tries to harm you.
Yogurt is one of the most consumed fermented dairy products in the world today. Not only is it delicious, but yogurt regulates your metabolism and blood pressure, while building a colony of helpful bacteria in your stomach. Make sure that the yogurt you buy is organic and produced from grass-fed goats and sheep.
All in all, fermented foods and vegetables are beneficial to the overall health of any person. That’s why you should definitely take the time to try some and build your body to become a strong fortress.