Fermented Foods that support your immune system

Fermented Foods that support your immune system

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For decades, many traditional diets have made extensive use of fermented foods, and for good reason. These meals offer a variety of potential health benefits in addition to being delicious. 

Let's start by defining fermented foods. These are foods that have undergone fermentation, a process in which the food's nutrients are broken down by helpful microbes like bacteria or yeast. Lactic acid, one of the molecules produced by this process, can help preserve the food and give it a distinctive flavour. Foods that have undergone fermentation include sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, and tempeh, to name a few.

  1. Sauerkraut: This is a type of fermented cabbage that is popular in Central and Eastern Europe. It is produced by chopping up cabbage, adding salt, and letting it ferment. This preserves the cabbage. Probiotics can be found in sauerkraut, which is also rich in fibre and vitamin C.
  2. Kimchi: A popular Korean meal made of spicy fermented vegetables. Napa cabbage, radishes, and other vegetables are often used in its preparation, along with seasonings and spices. Probiotics can be found in kimchi, which is also a strong source of vitamins A and C.
  3. Miso is a fermented soybean paste that is popular in Japan. It is made by fermenting cooked soybeans with salt and a type of fungus called koji. Probiotics can be found in miso, which is also rich in protein and minerals.
  4. Tempeh: A popular product in Indonesia made from fermented soybeans. It is made by fermenting cooked soybeans and shaping them into a patty or loaf. Probiotics are abundant in tempeh, which is also strong in protein and fibre.


Fermented foods are a good source of probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that can help support a healthy immune system. The microbiome, or group of microorganisms that live inside the body, can be balanced with the help of these bacteria. Since a healthy microbiome can support digestion, immunity, and mental health, it is believed to be crucial for overall well-being and health. By consuming fermented foods, you can help to increase the number of beneficial bacteria in your gut, which can help to support a healthy microbiome.

Additionally, the immune system may benefit from fermented meals. According to some studies, eating foods that have undergone fermentation may enhance the immune system, lower the chance of contracting certain infections and may help to lessen the intensity and duration of colds and upper respiratory tract infections.

In addition to their potential immune benefits, fermented foods may also offer other health benefits. For instance, some evidence points to the possibility that eating foods that have undergone fermentation may help lower the chance of contracting conditions like type 2 diabetes and heart disease. According to some research, fermented foods may also aid with weight management by lowering body weight and body fat. This may be partly because fermented foods frequently include high fibre levels, which can aid in promoting feelings of fullness and lowering the likelihood of overeating.

In conclusion, fermented foods offer a range of potential health benefits, including being a good source of probiotics, supporting immune health, and possibly reducing the risk of certain chronic diseases. While more research is needed to fully understand the potential effects of fermented foods on health, including a variety of fermented foods in your diet can be a tasty and nutritious way to support your overall health and well-being. 1  2  3 4

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