Yesterday afternoon I had the pleasure of speaking to a group about nutrition and at one point in the conversation, we got on the topic of our microbiome and the importance of fermented foods.
One lady spoke up to say she didn’t like fermented foods. She was totally turned off by kimchi, sauerkraut, kombucha etc and I totally get it! They are acquired tastes and despite all of the health benefits, they aren’t going to appeal to everybody. That said, they are such an important addition to our overall health that it’s important to find a way to enjoy them. Our bodies will thank us.
Adding new foods to your diet can seem daunting and overwhelming especially when your first impression of them is not so great. The truth is is that consuming fermented foods is a very traditional way of eating and we need to bring it back
When it comes to our health, our gut and digestion is at the core of it all. The gut has even been nicknamed the second brain because it dictates so many responses in our bodies, right down to the foods we crave! I’ve said this in a previous blog post, but 2000 years ago Hippocrates famously said “All disease begins in the gut”, and all this time later we are finding out just how true that really is. The addition of fermented foods benefit us in so many ways. Here a few of my favourite key benefits:
-Supports our immune system. Did you know 2/3’s of our bodies immune system lives in the gut?
-Supports healthy and proper digestion. A friend of mine recently said in a blog “you are what you absorb, not what you eat” which is so true! We want our bodies to efficiently be breaking foods down so we can actually make use of their nutritional benefits. The healthy bacteria release enzymes that in turn help us break down our foods much easier.
-Helps us stay regular. No it’s not glamorous, but what goes on in the bathroom is a huge indication of our health! If you are irregular, try the addition of these foods and chances are they’ll help you out.
-The gut is where we synthesize various different vitamins including mood supporting B Vitamins, the healthy bacteria in our system play a key role in this
-Help combat leaky gut and maintains the integrity of the gut lining.
-Help combat chronic inflammation which is thought to be at the root of most disease
On the Go Gut Loving Smoothie:
When I need something quick, whether its for breakfast, a snack or even a late night dinner, a smoothie is my go to and I am loving this good-for-my-gut combo:
This smoothie features two fermented good for your gut ingredients: Genuine Health’s Fermented Vanilla Protein powder and organic kefir. The fermentation of the protein powder and dairy are much easier for digestion as compared to an unfermented protein powder and dairy product.
To recreate this smoothie: Genuine Health’s Fermented Vanilla Protein, organic kefir, organic blueberries, banana 1 tbsp milled flax seed, cinnamon, optional topping of extra berries and bee pollen!
Tempeh Brunch Bowl:
This can be thrown together so quickly as tempeh is super easy to cook. This is a perfect addition to a brunch spread or for a satisfying lunch.
Tempeh is a complete protein source made from fermented soy beans. (When it comes to soy foods in general, I recommend they’re consumed fermented for easier digestion) It’s a great source of plant based protein and a great alternative for meat.
To recreate this bowl: organic roasted sweet potato, baked marinated organic tempeh, avocado and hardboiled or poached egg. Top with black pepper, sea salt and chopped green onion
Creamy Coconut Miso Veggie Soup:
It’s grey and dreary out today where I’m from and I can’t wait to warm some of this up for dinner. I’m always mindful not to bring miso to a full boil, just gently warm it to maintain full benefits.
A while back I was in Victoria, BC with one of my best friends and went to Bliss Cafe. I had theeee most amazing coconut miso veggie soup that I have been dreaming of ever since. It was incredibly delicious. I did my best to pull from memory what this soup consisted of and fortunately I was completely happy with how this turned out. Miso is fermented paste of soybeans. Most people know it as a soup but it’s actually fairly versatile! There are many different varieties which have different flavours and lend to different things: you can create sauces, soups, salad dressings, dips etc with it.
To recreate this soup: Genmai miso, full fat coconut milk, organic low sodium vegetable broth, veggies of choice: I used radish, green bean, portobello mushroom, carrot, zucchini. Top with seaweeds: I used a blend of wakame, dulse and sea lettuce and nori. This addition may be easily overlooked if you choose to recreate this recipe but I highly recommend adding them! They are a fantastic source of vitamin and minerals.
There are plenty of different foods and ways to the enjoy the incredible powerful fermented foods. They may take some time to get used to but keep at it. They are amazingly flavourful but most importantly so vital to our overall health. In fact, the bacteria in our body outnumber the amount of human cells we have! Have you tried fermented foods?