Fermenting the how’s and why’s

Fermented Foods

Fermented foods contribute live microbes to the existing colonies in our gut,
called the microbiome. If these microbes in our body become unbalanced an array
of conditions linked to this imbalance can occur. When the bad bacteria
overwhelm the good bacteria, food is not digested properly and these food
particles leak into the body. This is called “leaky gut”, which causes major
inflammation and can lead to autoimmune disease, such as ulcerative colitis,
irritable bowel syndrome, allergies, diabetes, metabolism and
metabolic diseases, mental disorders and other immunity problems.

Probiotics are live microorganisms, bacteria, yeasts and fungi that have health
benefits, they are found naturally in some fermented foods, and also can be
purchased in tablet form. Studies have shown they can improve digestion, help
protect against disease and enhance immune function by fighting infection.
Probiotics can improve both diarrhea and constipation issues, help reduce
symptoms of IBS, knock out colds and flu, prevents yeast infections, kill
candida, clear up skin issues, reduce cavities in children, give relief from
lactose intolerance, and prevent food poisoning.

Strains of lactobacillus and bifidobacterium bacteria are the most commonly used
probiotics because they survive the passage through your digestive system to the
gut. Studies have found fermented milk products reduce the risk of bladder
cancer in Sweden and the Netherlands.

Kombucha is a fermented fizzy drink made from sweetened black tea (and green tea), using a scoby which is a combination of yeast and bacteria that enables the fermentation process. The yeast turns sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, and bacteria called acetobacter, which are very common in the environment, convert the alcohol into acetic acid, giving it a sour taste. It may contain a small amount of alcohol.

Fermented foods like Kimchi, sauerkraut, pickles and other vegetables are
created using lactic acid fermentation.The process occurs when the
lactobacilli bacteria convert the sugars in the vegetables into lactic acid. The
vegetables and spices are mixed with salt or placed in a saltwater brine, and
the salt inhibits the growth of unwanted organisms until the acid produced by
the lactobacilli lowers the pH sufficiently to inhibit growth and spoilage. The
final product is rich in beneficial microbes.

Fermented drinks such as fermented whey from grass-fed cows and fermented
ginger,garlic, kombucha, kimchi, coconut kefir, and apple cider vinegar are also
powerful tools to help destroy parasites. The good bacteria in fermented
vegetables enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels such as
vitamin C, vitamin K and B vitamins.Fermented vegetables also produce helpful
enzymes, which help to digest foods and detoxify. Better digestion means more
nutrients are absorbed and this in turn strengthens and supports the immune
system to better able fight off disease and illness.

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Danah Cooper Baron

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