Fermented Foods: Why we should be eating them?

The term ‘Fermented Food’ can sometimes sound a little scary!

BUT, there’s no need to panic.  Most people consume fermented food without even realising. That cup of coffee you’re sipping on?  Fermented.  The sourdough bread you ate at brunch?  Also fermented.  And what about Chocolate?  You guessed it...fermented!

So, chances are that you’ve probably eaten them before and really enjoyed them.  However, this blog is all about the healthy fermented foods (sorry, we’re not going to tell you that chocolate is the new health food!)  Fermented foods can be added to any diet to aid digestion and contribute to a healthier lifestyle overall.  

 

What are they?

You’ll be surprised by the amount of foods that are fermented!  The great news is that most of these foods work fantastically with salads and can be added to any of our original salad options.  Great examples of healthy fermented foods are:

  • Sauerkraut
  • Unpasteurised Cheese
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Pickles
  • Soy Sauce
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha

Why are they so good for you? 

Fermented foods have been touched by the digestive gods.

This is because they go through a process of lactofermentation in which probiotic bacterias are created, which is great for the body.  Probiotics increase the amount of good bacteria in the gut which can reverse bowel disease and improve overall gut health.  Hence, these foods are amazing for your digestive system.  

Alongside this, lactofermentation generates enzymes in the body which aid digestion, as well as Omega-3 and B-vitamins which are crucial to overall health.  Not only do these little guys have incredible benefits for the gut, they are also able to decrease the amount of supplements that you need to take in order to maintain your overall wellness.

The research has also shown that they can even have an effect on your overall wellbeing.  Science has backed the idea that ‘gut feeling’ is real.  Serotonin is a neurotransmitter which is created in the gut and travels to the brain in order to make us feel good and in some cases not so good.  Fermented foods aid overall gut health, which in turn contributes to the creation of serotonin which makes us feel great.

They are amazingly healthy and come at a relatively low cost.  Unlike other health foods which might break the bank, they have been eaten for years across an array of cultures and have been hailed for their affordability and ability to stay fresh.  They last forever and are able to retain their nutrients, which has contributed to their popularity in the past.

Eat your pickles! 

There are loads of great ways to add fermented foods to your diet.  Maybe you want to try and make your own sourdough bread?  Or try fermenting your own vegetables?

If you’re not feeling so adventurous, don’t sweat it!  You can always head to the supermarket to source some pickles, Greek yoghurt and unpasteurised cheese which will make the perfect addition to any healthy diet.  Whatever you do, try and add a couple of portions of fermented foods into your diet over the next week and see if you notice any changes.  You could even order yourself a couple of salads and add fermented foods to help you get stuck in.

Don’t forget to get in touch if you have any questions or requests - we are always on hand to offer nutritional support, advice and encouragement.  Good Luck!