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Probiotics on Fermented Foods

There are two ways to add good bacteria into your gut: dietary supplements and fermented foods. Probiotic supplements are reserved for specific ailments or as suggested by a health practitioner. You can easily get them over the counter. Another way to get more good bacteria in your gut is to consume fermented foods. What are fermented foods? Why should you add them to your diet?

 

Fermented foods

 

Fermented foods are foods that have been broken down by yeast and bacteria through the fermentation process. Fermented foods are now categorized as the next “superfoods” because of their growing popularity among health-conscious consumers.

 

The idea of food fermentation is not new. Many countries including Japan, Korea, Germany, and Poland, ferment foods daily. Food fermentation is one of the oldest food preservation techniques. It has been used for centuries. Fermented foods undergo lactofermentation, which occurs when bacteria in the foods feed on the starches and sugars, creating lactic acid. This process preserves the foods. It also releases beneficial enzymes vital to the digestion process, like omega-3 fatty acids and B vitamins. We know the fact that most of the immune system resides in the gut, which means it’s vital for overall health. Furthermore, it also promotes the growth of various probiotics.

 

However, not all fermented foods contain probiotics. Beverages, like beer or wine, undergo steps that remove the probiotics. The process of baking or canning also makes the probiotics inactive. The most common fermented foods that contain probiotics or have added probiotics include pickles, miso, yogurt, kimchi, tempeh, sourdough, and some cheeses.

 

The only downside of fermented foods is their taste and smell. They’re quite strong and can be unpleasant to those who are not used to consuming fermented foods. Yogurt, the most valuable player among all the fermented foods has flavors and texture that’s very appealing even for children. It’s obviously the widely accepted fermented food, and it plays a vital role in the history of probiotics. Yogurt contains added probiotics which range from 90 billion CFUs to 500 billion CFUs per serving.

 

 

What are the properties of fermented foods?

 

Aside from the nutritive properties, food fermentation may bring additional properties to the new foods including:

  • More live and active cultures of probiotics
  • Improved texture, taste, and digestibility
  • The beneficial enzyme-like lactic acid helps digests other foods like proteins.
  • Food is enriched with increased concentration of a variety of health-promoting compounds

                                             

Ways to add fermented foods into your diet

 

Breakfast

  1. Make breakfast bowl with yogurt and cooked grains and beans
  2. Top your scrambled eggs with fermented salsa.
  3. Add yogurt, buttermilk, or kefir to your morning smoothies.
  4. Top your oatmeal or granola with fruits and yogurt.
  5. Add kimchi or kraut to your breakfast burritos or scrambles.

Lunch

  1. Use fermented mayonnaise instead of the store-bought ones.
  2. Add chopped fermented pickles to your ham salad sandwich, salmon, or tuna.
  3. Make tofu soup with fermented miso paste
  4. Stir fermented veggies into sauces for tuna, salmon, or crab fish cakes.

Dinner

  1. Top your green salads with fermented veggies.
  2. Add kimchi to your stir-fries and rice bowls.
  3. Stir some sour cream into your dinner soup
  4. Experiment with a new kind of vegetables

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