If you’ve ever studied traditional diets such as the Paleo diet, you’ve likely heard all about the benefits of eating fermented foods. They are loaded with probiotics. Your family doctor may have even recommended you take probiotics. I want to show you how fermented foods are even better for you than anything you can ever get in a capsule. Let me open your mind to the world of fermented foods.
What’s the difference
Do you have a bottle of probiotic vitamins on your shelf right now? While it’s good to get those probiotics in, I’m a huge advocate for real food and getting our nutrients as much as we can from a whole foods diet. Some nutrients need to be supplemented with vitamins, but I believe probiotics needn’t be one of those. If I can teach you how to make fermented foods in your own kitchen with simple ingredients and supplies you already have on hand, you’ll experience some benefits that will greatly improve your families health. There’s more good bacteria in a tablespoon Of sauerkraut than a whole jar of probiotic pills. Today I’d like to discuss what fermented foods are, and convince you to start feeding them to yourself and your family on a regular basis
Types of Fermentation
There are 2 types of fermentation. Yeast ferementation – yeast eat the sugars and make alcohol, and bacterial fermentation – when bacteria eat the sugars and make lactic acid. The latter is called lacto fermentation and unlike the yeast fermentation, it does not make you drunk. Cabbage juice is high in lactic acid. And when you begin to make your own saurkraut, you add salt to prevent the the bad fermentation from starting. You’ll start by putting it in crocks or mason jars, and allow it to ferment for a few days. You end up with a delicious saurkraut. It’s completely preserved and will keep for years.
You become an alchemist in your kitchen when you learn how to ferment. It’s can be really fun. Lacto fermenting is magic. Nature takes over and does her part when you do your part.
Many Cultures Eat Fermented Foods
Primitive and traditional diets have a high content of food enzymes and beneficial bacteria of lacto-fermented foods.
Saurkraut, fermented veggies, & fermented beverages all contain these enzymes. Not only do we get enzymes from these foods, but we get the good bacteria as well. Our gut is swimming with good bacteria and bad bacteria. The more good we put in, the easier it is to flush out the bad.
Eating fermented foods is universal. Cultures fermented foods to keep foods good throughout the winter. Science is starting to validate these traditions of cultures who fermented foods. It’s very beneficial for our gut health. The wisdom of these cultures is deeper than we know.
Kefir and Kombucha are great drinks that are lacto fermented. You find it in many many cultures. Native Americans would ferment their corn before making their tortillas so it would be easily digestible. Then they would ferment that corn further to make a beverage.
Have you ever tried water kefir drinks? They are healthy soft drinks. And If you like soda, try making the switch to Kombucha. It’s like a healthier soda.
We are increasing the nutrient value and it’s life
Most modern methods decrease the nutrient value. Fermenting makes it more healthy for you.
If you were to eat cabbage in a coleslaw or a raw salad, it would be harder on your body to digest. But not fermented cabbage. Cabbage alone contains a lot of vitamin C. However, when you ferment cabbage, which turns into sauerkraut, the vitamin C goes up 10 times! Minerals are released and B vitamins go up as well.
Cabbage has anti nutrients as well. Anti nutrients are natural or synthetic compounds found in a variety of foods — especially grains, beans, legumes and nuts — that interfere with the absorption of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. They can even get in the way of the digestive enzymes, which are key for proper absorption. Anti nutrients can also be found in plant roots, vegetables, leaves and fruits, although these are at much lower levels and usually have benefits as opposed to mostly harmful effects. Fermented cabbage can help fight against the anti-nutrients in our bodies.
Children and Fermented Foods
Is it okay for children to have lacto fermented foods? YES – you can even start pretty early before they are a year old. In Africa, mothers give their babies fermented corn. They recognized that it gave a lot of protection to the babies. It inoculates the gut to protect them from all the diseases that are prevelant in Africa.
Parents preparing for conception, should be eating these lacto fermented foods 6 months before they get pregnant. Mother’s begin to populate their gut with the good bacteria that the baby will then pick up in the mothers birth canal. It’s the first inoculation. What you don’t want is candida, yeast and fungus. However in our culture today, sadly, many many babies are picking this up within first inoculation.
Disease & Fermented Foods
While we can’t claim that anything can actually heal the body, our bodies are amazing at how strong they can be, if we’re just willing to feed them good foods. Some of these enzymes in lacto fermented foods are protective against cancerous cells. Anything that helps your digestion, will help your body. You’ll start to produce cancer fighting enzymes instead of digestive enzymes. And cancer is rampant in our society.
There are many components that will help protect you against cancer. Getting rid of chemicals in your home, eating clean foods, exercising, reducing stress etc.. Fermented Foods is just one of them. You’re getting a blast of good bacteria in your gut.
We have 10 times more bacteria in our body than we do cells. You have a bio film lining your intestinal tract. That makes up 85% of your immune system. It will keep out pesticides and heavy metals. It protects you from mercury. So as long as you support that good bacteria, you’ll have protection.
70% of energy used in the body, is used for digestion. Fermented foods are pre-digested foods, so you’ll gain more energy when using them. Imagine decreasing your fatigue during the day, or not needing that extra cup of coffee to keep you awake in the afternoon.
If you suffer from any gut issues such as IBS, fermented foods can really help you.
Sailors would avoid getting scurvy if they ate fermented foods on long voyages.
How much should I take?
Can you go overboard with fermented foods? YES. You don’t need a whole plate of saurkraut. Saurkraut is a cold food. You eat it in small amounts as a condiment with your meal. Fermented foods help you digest fats as well. They’re not to be eaten in huge amounts. Some people might experience constipation from wiping out their gut if they are eating too much fermented products. In my home, we just drink a shot glass full of kombucha each day or Have about a tablespoon of fermented veggies (saurkraut) at every meal.
Be careful when purchasing kombucha from the store. Some of them are too sweet. They haven’t fermented long enough. You don’t want to have too much sugar in your beverage. Sugar is damaging on the gut.
If I could leave you with one thing, it would be this…
Learn to eat saurkraut. Get the real stuff. Most health food stores carries them now.
RECIPE TO MY SAURKRAUT – YouTube
Add 2 T. Whey to your jar and that will help with the lactic acid buildup and get the good bacteria going
A good sea salt will help prevent any bad bacteria from getting into your kraut.
Think you’re ready to jump into a whole foods diet? Now is the time for you to get my 5-day whole foods reset for beginners and families. I’ll walk you through clean eating at it’s finest. Simple click on the link, and choose the reset corresponding with the season you are in right now. Purchase your groceries and supplements, and get started. I walk you through everything. Let me help you set the stage for being an example to your children of what healthy eating looks like.
Need some 1:1 coaching to really help you solidify those habits for life? Let’s do it. Let’s jump on a discovery call together and you can see first hand what it’s like getting coached from a Master Certified Health Coach. I am here to support you and your goals and help you lead the way in health and wellness. CLICK HERE to learn more about my 1:1 coaching.
P.S. Are you taking fermented foods or probiotics? I’d love to hear about it. Post in the comments below.
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