Previous mentioned as a way to stay healthy by adding to your diet; fermented foods such as kimchi, kefir, kombucha, natural yogurts and fermented soya bean milk , which have been shown to promote the abundance of healthy gut bacteria and reduce the levels of enterobacteriaceae, a family of bacteria linked to a number of chronic diseases. Here Dr. Joseph Mercola, Mercola.com, reflects on fermented foods and how to culture a healthy way of life:
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“There is an abundance of nutritional therapies that can help you get to new levels of health. I've been advocating them for decades now, but there is one that I've found to have phenomenal benefits in your overall wellness: the introduction of fermented foods to your diet.
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I'm so excited to share with you today the radically positive changes fermented or cultured foods can provide your body: how they can “heal and seal” your gut to optimize health or reverse disease, and how culturing your own veggies and foods can give you a jump-start to achieving better health today.
Fermented Foods Are Abundant in Your Ancestor's Diet
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The way our forefathers lived offers clues on how different cultures used fermented foods (like yogurt and sauerkraut) not only as food preservatives, but also as support for intestinal and overall health.
History shows that:
- During the Roman era, people consumed sauerkraut because of its taste and health benefits.
- In ancient India, it was common to enjoy lassi, a pre-dinner yogurt drink. This traditional practice is anchored on the principle of using sour milk as a probiotic delivery system to the body.
- Bulgarians are known for their high consumption of fermented milk and kefir, and for their high level of health.
- Ukrainians consumed probiotics from a fermented food list that included raw yogurt, sauerkraut, and buttermilk.
- Various Asian cultures ate pickled fermentations of cabbage, turnips, eggplant, cucumbers, onions, squash, and carrots, and consume these fermented treats until today.
Fermented foods are chock-full of probiotics or good bacteria. A myriad of research has demonstrated how the ideal balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut forms the foundation for physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
Why a Fermented Food List?
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Consuming traditionally fermented foods provide you a number of benefits, including:
- Important nutrients. Some fermented foods are outstanding sources of essential nutrients such as vitamin K2, which help prevent arterial plaque buildup and heart disease. For instance, cheese curd is an excellent source of both probiotics and vitamin K2. Just half an ounce (15 grams) of natto daily can also provide all the K2 you'll need . Fermented food is also a potent producer of many B vitamins.
- Optimizing your immune system. An estimated 80 percent of your immune system is actually located in your gut. Probiotics play a crucial role in the development and operation of the mucosal immune system in your digestive tract, and aid in the production of antibodies to pathogens. This makes a healthy gut a major factor in maintaining optimal health, as a robust immune system is your top defense system against all disease.
- Detoxification. Fermented foods are some of the best chelators available. The beneficial bacteria in these foods are highly potent detoxifiers, capable of drawing out a wide range of toxins and heavy metals.
- Cost-effectiveness. Adding a small amount of fermented food to each meal will give you the biggest bang for your buck. Why? Because they can contain 100 times more probiotics than a supplement!
- Natural variety of microflora. As long as you vary the fermented and cultured foods you eat, you'll get a much wider variety of beneficial bacteria than you could ever get from a supplement.
What the State of Your Gut Tells About Your Overall Health
Probiotics, along with a host of other microorganisms, are so crucial to your health that researchers have compared them to “a newly recognized organ.” Your microflora – a term used to describe the bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microbes that make up your microbial inner ecosystem – impact far more than your digestive tract.
Here are areas where your gut bacteria play key roles in:
1. Behavior. A study published in Neurogastroenterology & Motility found that mice lacking in gut bacteria behave differently from normal mice, engaging in what would be referred to as “high-risk behavior.” This altered behavior was accompanied by neurochemical changes in the mouse brain.
In fact, your gut serves as your second brain. It produces more of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which is known to have a positive influence on your mood, than your brain does.
2. Gene expression. A probiotic-rich beverage has been shown to influence the activity of hundreds of your genes to help them express in a positive, disease-fighting way. This makes your gut health a very powerful variable of epigenetics, a cutting-edge field of medicine showing that your lifestyle plays a significant role in your genetic expression.
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3. Diabetes. According to a study from Denmark, bacterial population in the gut of diabetics differs from non-diabetics. According to the authors, the results of their study indicate that type 2 diabetes in humans is linked to compositional changes in intestinal microbiota.
A healthy diet – low in sugar and grains; high in whole raw foods and fermented foods – allows your beneficial gut bacteria to flourish.
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4. Autism. Establishment of normal gut flora in the first 20 days or so of life is critical in appropriate maturation of your baby's immune system. Hence, babies with abnormal gut flora have compromised immune systems and are particularly at risk for developing ADHD, learning disabilities, and autism, especially if they are vaccinated before restoring balance to their gut flora.
5. Obesity. Probiotics may help fight obesity. Restoring your gut flora is therefore a crucial consideration if you're struggling to lose weight.”
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Read More … Article Source: https://articles.mercola.com/fermented-foods.aspx
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