“Everyone has a doctor in him or her; we just have to help it in its work. The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest force in getting well. Our food should be our medicine. Our medicine should be our food.” – Hippocrates, 460 BC – 377 BC
The word “probiotic” means “for life”, in Greek. For thousands of generations, people from every corner of the globe – Asia, Egypt, Greece, Roman Empire, African, and European civilizations – relied on the medicinal, protective and healing powers of lacto-fermented food, for its many life-giving, protecting and healing benefits. Doctors of antiquity prescribed soured milk (yogurt) and pickles (kimchi and cucumber pickle which originated in China), for digestion issues, following the wisdom of Hippocrates.
The probiotic effect, or “natural healing force within each one of us” are real, living beneficial microbes proven by modern science to exist in a wide-variety of lacto-fermented foods. Our flesh and digestive systems are dependent on microbes. When we do not have a diet rich in beneficial (probiotic) naturally-created food, this natural healing force suffers, and in turn, so do we.
Over a century ago, the beneficial probiotic effect of lactic-acid bacteria (LAB) was described by Nobel laureate, Ilya Mechnikov. He was mocked, but decades later, proven to be correct!
The mainstream media and Westernized medicine are only now just catching up to what thousands of generations have known, that lacto-fermented foods offer a wide-range of nutrients and health benefits. Every year there are amazing discoveries about how complex lactic-acid fermentation probiotic health-benefits affect every aspect of life.
We are a microbial being as is all the life around us. Our bodies are incredibly complex structures home to trillions of microbes, so it only makes sense that if we keep them fed and healthy with nutrient-dense enzyme-rich food, they will, in turn, keep us healthy!
The following health benefits have been attributed to strains of lactobacilli and bifidobacteria:
- Inhibition of potential pathogens, such as E. coli or Clostridium perfringens
- Prevention of diarrhea caused by (rota)virus or Salmonella
- Reducing the effects of a Candida infection
- Positive effects on cholesterol level
- Prevention of gut dysbiosis
- Stimulation of the immune system
- Production of and making vitamins more available
- Increased defecation and reduced constipation
- Improving the uptake of minerals, especially calcium
- Breaking down of lactose for lactose-intolerant persons
- Help in the relief of anxiety and depression
All lacto-fermented foods have different strains or ratios of lactic-acid bacteria, and each of them is crucial to good health. For a well-balanced diet, be sure to eat a wide-range of fermented foods. Considering how many there are to choose from? Variety shouldn’t be a problem!
Pickl-It makes it fun and easy to always have batches of your favorite probiotics fermenting!
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Microbiology for Teachers – or for those who love to learn!
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|by Kathleen in Fermenting | Permalink|
Did you know...
Consciousness of the importance of vitamins increased slowly from the 1911 discovery of the concept of “vitamine”.
—First Vitamin Discovered
My soon-to-be 19-year-old son was about to get ready for bed, when he asked if he could have some dessert. I said “Yes”, and a few minutes later, he came out with a big bowl of kimchi, mixed veggies and kraut. I was so thrilled to see him wanting to eat something good instead of the icecream that “Dad” was eating! Maybe I didn’t start too late making healthy fermented foods for him!!!