Probiotics are live microorganisms that provide several health benefits when consumed. These are usually beneficial bacteria that serve some function in the body. Probiotics have all sorts of powerful benefits for your body and brain.
They can improve digestive health, reduce depression and promote cardiac health.
Some researches even suggests that they can help your skin look more beautiful..
You can get probiotics from fermented foods and here’s a list of 11 super healthy fermented foods that contain live probiotics.
Yogurt is a highly nutritious dairy product made from fermented milk. Milk is fermented with friendly bacteria, mainly lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria.
Eating yogurt has been associated with many health benefits, including improved bone health, in addition, It is also beneficial for people with high blood pressure.
In children, yogurt may help reduce diarrhea caused by antibiotics. However, keep in mind that not all yogurts contain live probiotics. In some cases, live bacteria are killed during processing.
For this reason, make sure you choose yogurt with live or active cultures.
Also, make sure to always read the label on the yogurt before buying it. Even if it’s labeled as low fat or fat free, it may still be loaded with high amounts of added sugar.
Kefir is a fermented milk drink, made by adding kefir grains to cow or goat milk. Kefir grains are not cereal grains, but rather cultures of lactic acid bacteria and yeast that look a bit like cauliflower.
The word kefir allegedly comes from the Turkish word Keyif, which means “to feel good” after eating. In fact, kefir has been related to various health benefits.
It can improve your bone health, help with some digestive problems and protect against infections.
While yogurt is probably the best known probiotic food in the Western diet, kefir is actually a better source. Kefir contains several major strains of friendly bacteria and yeast, making it a diverse and potent probiotic.
Sauerkraut is finely shredded cabbage, fermented by lactic acid bacteria. It’s one of the oldest traditional foods in many countries, especially in Europe.
Sauerkraut is often used on top of sausages or as a side dish. It has a sour, salty taste and can be stored for months in an airtight container.
In addition to its probiotic qualities, sauerkraut is rich in fiber, as well as vitamins C, B and K. It’s also high in sodium and contains iron and manganese.
Sauerkraut also contains antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin which are important for eye health.
Tempeh is a fermented soy product. Its shape is like a firm patty, and people have described the taste as nutty, earthy or similar to a mushroom.
Tempeh is originally from Indonesia, but has become popular around the world as a meat substitute, with high protein value. The fermentation process actually has some surprising effects on its nutritional profile.
The bacteria that ferment it produce some vitamin B12, a nutrient that soy does not contain, mainly found on animal foods, like meat, fish, dairy products and eggs.
Kimchi is a fermented, spicy Korean side dish. Cabbage is usually the main ingredient, but it can also be made from other vegetables.A mix of seasonings is used for flavor, such as red chili pepper flakes, garlic, ginger, scallion and salt.
Kimchi contains the lactic acid bacteria known as Lactobacillus Kimchii, as well as other bacteria that may benefit digestive health. Furtheremore, it’s high in some vitamins and minerals, including vitamin K, riboflavin (vitamin B12) and iron.
Miso is a Japanese seasoning, traditionally made by fermenting soy with salt and a type of fungus called koji. Miso can also be made by mixing soy with other ingredients, such as barley, rice and rye.
This paste is most often used in miso soup, a popular breakfast food in Japan. Miso is typically salty, so you can buy it in many varieties, such as white, yellow, red and brown. Miso is a good source of protein and fiber. It’s also high in various vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, including vitamin K, manganese and copper.
Miso has also been related to some health benefits, like lowering the risk of breast cancer in middle aged Japanese women, or reduced risk of cardiac diseases.
Kombucha is a fermented black or green tea drink. This popular beverage is fermented by a friendly colony of bacteria and yeast. It is consumed in many parts of the world, especially in Asia.
On the internet, there are many comments about the potential health benefits of kombucha tea, however, the studies that exist have been done on animals and test tubes, and the results may not apply to humans.
Even so, since kombucha is fermented with bacteria and yeast, it probably does have health benefits related to its probiotic properties.
Pickles are cucumbers that have been preserved and then put in a solution of salt and water. They are left to ferment for some time, using their own naturally present lactic acid bacteria. This process is what makes them sour.
Pickled cucumbers are a great source of healthy probiotic bacteria, which may improve digestive health. They are low calorie and a good source of vitamin K, an essential nutrient for blood clotting. Pickles also tend to be high in sodium, and It’s important to clarify that pickles made with vinegar do not contain live probiotics.
- Traditional buttermilk
The term buttermilk actually refers to a range of fermented dairy drinks. However, there are two main types of buttermilk: traditional and cultured.
Traditional buttermilk is simply the leftover liquid from making butter. Only this version contains probiotics, and it’s sometimes called grandma’s probiotic. This buttermilk is mainly consumed in India, Nepal and Pakistan, on the other hand, cultured buttermilk, is commonly found in American supermarkets, and generally does not have many probiotics benefits.
Buttermilk is low on fat and calories, but contains several important vitamins and minerals, like vitamin B12, riboflavin, calcium and phosphorus.
Natto is another soy fermented product, like tempeh and miso, which contains a bacterial strain called Bacillus subtilis. Natto is an essential element in Japanese kitchens. It’s typically mixed with rice and served with breakfast.
It has a distinctive smell, slimy texture and strong flavor. Natto is rich in proteins and vitamin K2, which is important for bone health and cardiovascular health.
A study in older Japanese men found that consuming natto regularly was associated with higher bone density. This is attributed to its high vitamin K2 content.
Other studies suggest that natto can help prevent osteoporosis in women
- Some types of cheese.
Although most types of cheese are fermented, this does not mean that all of them contain probiotics. Therefore, it’s important to look for live and active cultures on the food labels.
Good bacteria survive the aging process in some cheeses, including gouda, mozzarella, cheddar and cottage cheese. Cheese is a highly nutritious food, and it’s a very good source of protein. It’s also rich in important vitamins and minerals, including calcium, vitamin B12, phosphorus and selenium.
Moderate intake of dairy products, such as cheese, can even lower the risk of cardiac disease and osteoporosis.