Digestion is essential to every process in our body, and plays a huge role in how we feel. Fermented foods are abundant in natural probiotics that help us balance our bacteria - a crucial step to optimal health. ‘Probiotic’ literally translates to ‘for life’.
Fermented foods help us with digestive function, energy production, and nutrient absorption. Nearly every culture has a version of fermented foods that dates back centuries: yoghurt, miso, tofu, tempeh, and fermented vegetables such as kimchi, sauerkraut, and pickles, as well as drinks such as Kefir, Kombucha, Beet Kvass amongst many others.
Probiotics found in these fermented foods and drinks introduce different strains of bacteria into your digestive system. While bacteria is often associated with something that makes you sick - we are in fact made up of lots of bacteria; our human bodies are believed to be about half bacteria cells and half human cells. However, the bacteria cells in our body only makes up about 2% of your body weight.
Aim to add fermented foods into your daily diet to enhance digestive function, boost your energy, and create a healthier micro biome to assist with nutrient absorption. Most fermented foods and drinks can be made easily at home, with some requiring minimal effort and some which can be a bit more laborious. These can also be readily purchased in health stores and some supermarkets.
If you want to start with something easier than try Kombucha, a delicious, fizzy, probiotic rich tea. If you know someone that already makes Kombucha then ask them for a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast) and the rest of the ingredients you are likely to already have at home.
A happy gut equals a happy mind, so get fermenting and reap the benefits!
Written by Selina Singh ND