I have been conducting fermentation workshops for several years now, and in every workshop of mine i spend at least 1/3 of the time talking about the reason we should be consuming more home-made fermented foods.
Long story short - It really is all about the gut, that is also known as our digestive system.
Lately i hear so much about it, and while i'm so happy it's starting to get into the world community consciousness, it is not yet something we all take care of - but small step towards this reality already makes a huge change!
"The idea of the gut health everyone are talking about is that we always should strive to create a balance in favor of good bacteria as opposed to bad bacteria in our body"
So why everyone go crazy about our guts and why is it so important?
In order for me to explain this let me tell you about another term that is called 'Microbiome' - Each of us has an internal unique Eco-system of bacteria located within our bodies that we call the microbiome.
This eco-system is made out of trillions of microorganisms from thousands of different species, when the larger amount of them are located in our digestive system, but also throughout the body.
Our microbiome plays a huge role in our health. Why you ask? Well, 80% of the body’s immune system is formed in the gut, where the main microbiome is located as we mentioned, therefore its determined by our microbiome. and a good balanced microbiome provides essential benefits for our health and survival and directly influence our digestive system. (1)
The idea of the gut health everyone are talking about is that we always should strive to create a balance in favor of good bacteria as opposed to bad bacteria because there are more bacterial cells in your body than human cells.
The most significant influencers on our microbiome is our diet (2 , 3 , 4) and environmental exposures, and while we sometimes might not be able to control our environmental exposure, we definitely can help by supporting our gut health with a proper diet and lifestyle (5).
So how can we support our gut?
There are so many ways you can support your gut health but i'll focus on the three main and so important things each of you who reads this (and i really mean each of you) CAN do from today.
Eat prebiotic rich foods (or just eat a plant-based diet): Prebiotics are a type of fibers that the human body cannot digest so the fibers goes through the small intestine undigested and is fermented when it reaches the large colon. This fermentation process feeds beneficial bacteria colonies and helps to increase the number of desirable bacteria in our digestive system, it is essential to create an environment where good bacteria can thrive and flourish. You can find this prebiotic fiber in vegetables, fruits and legumes. here are Example for prebiotic rich foods- Jerusalem artichoke, garlic, onion, banana, asparagus, green peas, broccoli, legumes and so much more plant-based ingredients. (6, 7)
Eat probiotic rich foods: This is where fermented food is coming into the picture. Fermented food is so full of beneficial living bacteria inside of it, These beneficial microorganisms were named 'probiotics' which were proven to promote and improve health in the human body. Example for probiotic rich foods- Real traditional yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, sourdough, kombucha, aged cheeses and more. (8 , 9)
Move your body: A study (10,11) found that athletes had a larger variety of gut bacteria compared to non athletes - exercise changed the composition and function of our gut microbiome. But important to say, you don't have to be an athlete (!), a recent study (12), found that participants who had a regular 3 times a week fitness program improved the healthy microbes in their gut after just six weeks. Amazing how effective exercise can be.
More things you can do to contribute to your gut health are: Reducing stress, Sleep enough hours and Eat less sugary foods.
Hope you'll find it helpful,
For any questions you can comment here below!