Examining the Benefits of Fermented Food
What’s the first thing you think of when you hear the word “fermentation”? Maybe science class? Maybe home brewing a beer or kombucha? Maybe you're just leavening some bread with yeast. Fermented foods are good for gut-health and just so happen to be super tasty too. Are you reaping the benefits of natural probiotics in fermented foods? If not, here's a quick dive into all the ways you can incorporate fermented food into your diet life!
Good for the Gut
You might take a probiotic to keep a good balance of micro-organisms in your cut. The same concept is true when eating certain fermented food products. Your gut is a living breathing biome of bacteria, and microorganisms. Even more astounding is there is an inherit link between what happens in your stomach and your bodies neural network. Ever had butterflies in your stomach when you get nervous? That’s why it is so crucial to support good gut health with probiotics, fermented foods, and a healthy diet.
Fermented Foods to Try
If you don’t have a lot of experience with fermented foods it can be a little scary to try new things. If you’ve had sauerkraut or sourdough bread you are well on your way to eating more fermented food, but what about some of the more unconventional fermented items?
Kimchi is a fermented Korean dish that prominently features cabbage. Kimchi can be fermented for weeks and can have variations in vegetables, and seasoning. Kimchi is great on the side with any Asian dish, added as a topping on tacos, or simply on top of a bed of rice.
What happens when you take tea and let it ferment? The carbohydrates and sugars turn into alcohol and healthy bacteria that’s great for your gut. Kombucha usually has a slight alcoholic content and can be caffeinated. The drink is easy to make at home, is full of good bacteria and antioxidants and is great for gut health.
Fermented dairy might sound kind of gross, but if you’ve had some yogurt, you are already eating fermented. Kefir is very similar to yogurt but drinkable. Kefir is great for digestive health and can boost your gut health.
Miso is a traditional Japanese paste that is made up of fermented soybeans. Miso is great with veggies, ramen, with protein or in a soup.
The Fermentation Process
Fermenting is surprisingly easy to do in your home kitchen. Fermenting kits are widely available in stores and online, or you give it a try on your own by adding veggies, dairy, or fruit. Modern Hippie has an awesome breakdown of the history and steps needed to ferment food at home here.
There you have it! Are you waiting on the train at the funky fermentation station? What’s your favorite fermented items and recipes? Let us know in the comments below.