I have recently started to experiment with fermenting food. So far I have made my own sauerkraut and I have a tomato salsa in the process of fermenting. I have struggled with various digestion issues for a long time and had been reading a lot about how fantastic fermented food is for gut health… so I thought I would give it a try!
Sauerkraut is fermented cabbage – fermentation is the ancient method of preserving food. By adding salt to cabbage, the production of lactic acid bacteria is encouraged – turning the cabbage into sauerkreaut.
5 reasons why you should eat sauerkraut:
1. Sauerkraut improves our gut health – the fermentation process produces probiotics which aid the breakdown of food and nutrient assimilation. Basically probiotics help us digest our food and enables the gut to get the most out of the various nutrients in our diet.
2. Saurekraut improves our mood – a healthy gut means a healthy mind. Research has shown that the gut flora communicates with our central nervous system and therefore our brain. Our gut flora can influence our behavior and our moods – hence why the stomach is called the 2nd brain and we use the term ‘gut feeling.’
3. Sauerkraut is full of antioxidants – antioxidants help fight free radicals that cause certain cancers.
4. Sauerkraut stimulates the immune system and is an antimicrobial substance. This helps fight infection such as inflammatory bowel diseases and gastrointestinal disorders. Fermented foods can also help relieve the symptoms of IBS.
5. Sauerkraut is a good source of – dietary fiber, vitamin A (important for vision), vitamin C (important for absorbing iron), vitamin K (important for blood clotting) and B vitamins (important for growth and healthy skin).
It’s so easy to make:
- Slice 1 medium cabbage
- Add 1 tablespoon of salt
- Massage the salt in with your hands
- Put the cabbage and the liquid that has been produced by the salt in a jar (if there isn’t enough liquid then add a little water mixed with salt)
- Submerge the cabbage in the liquid – I place a glass in the mouth of the jar on top of the cabbage
- Place a tea towel over to protect from flies, dust etc
- Leave for 3 – 10 days depending on how strong a flavor you like
- Place in the fridge – it will keep for several months!