Fermented foods growing in popularity, can keep your gut in check
Published Wednesday, July 13, 2016 3:38PM ADT
Last Updated Wednesday, July 13, 2016 6:17PM ADT
Fermented foods are growing in popularity as a way to get healthy bacteria into a person’s diet.
Fermented food may not sound appetizing, instead bringing to mind thoughts of mouldy or spoiled food. But many fruits, vegetables and dairy products are fermented, with delicious and healthy results.
The process increases good bacteria, which can benefit your health.
Dietitian Angela Dufour says the healthy bacteria and probiotics found in certain fermented foods can help the body in several ways.
"When they go through that fermentation process, what happens is you can actually get more bacteria,” says Dufour.
"Mainly better bio availability of vitamins, minerals, again healthy gut, absorption of other foods, better digestion."
Fermented foods can also be beneficial to those with food sensitivities or intolerances.
"Naturally fermented yogurt and even kefir breaks down that lactose, so it's better able to be absorbed in lactose intolerant or sensitive people," says Dufour.
Kefir is one of the most common and familiar fermented products.
"It actually has 20 to 30 times the amount of probiotics as an actual regular yogurt,” says Dufour.
Dufour recommends swapping your regular yogurt for kefir, and replacing one of your beverages with a fermented option.
"Other products would be kombucha, which is basically adding some bacteria to green, black or white teas," she says.
Miso is another commonly-found fermented food, but Dufour says moderation is the key.
"It’s easy to add as a marinade, or in sauces; however the sodium content should be cautioned about, because you'll get about 260 mg of sodium in just two tablespoons of miso."
Jessie Palmer had a previous job in Korea that inspired her current Maritime business 'Cabbage Patch Kimchi.'
During her four years teaching overseas, Palmer took classes to learn how to make kimchi.
"While I was there I just really grew to love kimchi. It was delicious,” says Palmer. "It's essentially fermented cabbage. It's made from napa cabbage."
Kimchi is traditionally used as a condiment or side dish, and like other fermented foods, it also has many health benefits.
Palmer suggests trying kimchi, in a variety of dishes, as well.
"Sausages, hamburgers, a lot of people like it with eggs. It goes really well with rice, any meat, seafood. I've baked it in scones before, which was really tasty."
Dufour recommends adding fermented foods to your diet slowly over time if you don't already take probiotics to avoid any stomach upset.