Fermented Foods

Posted on in Healthy Living by Michelle Schoffro Cook

Ten Specific Ways to
Improve Your Life


  1. Eating sauerkraut helps protect you from breast cancer. When cabbage is fermented, as it is in making sauerkraut, its nutrients, known as glucosinolates, transform into the powerhouse anticancer nutrients isothiocyanates. Researchers have found that isothiocyanates balance excessive hormone production linked to breast cancer and even suppress tumor growth.
  2. Kimchi is the medicine of the future. Scientists have identified a whopping 970 different probiotic species in kimchi, many of which offer powerful immune-boosting effects. Some of these unique probiotics are proven to kill superbugs even when our most potent medicines fail. The Journal of Medicinal Food found that kimchi’s additional health properties include anticancer properties, anti-obesity benefits, anti-constipation effects, colorectal health promotion, cholesterol reduction, fibrolytic effect (a process that prevents blood clots from growing), antioxidative and anti-aging properties, brain health promotion, immune promotion, and skin health promotion.
  3. Regular consumption of miso fights at least five different types of cancer. Research published in multiple medical journals, including the International Journal of Oncology, found that miso consumption prevents and even effectively treats lung, liver, breast, colon, and liver cancers.
  4. Eating yogurt can reduce four markers essential for preventing diabetes and heart disease. Research published in Nutrition demonstrated that yogurt cultured with the probiotic L. plantarum improved cholesterol levels, blood sugar balance, and homocysteine levels in women with metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of four symptoms, and when they occur together, they increase a person’s risk of diabetes as well as heart disease and stroke. So reducing these markers bodes well for long-term health.
  5. Eating certain fermented foods can alleviate seasonal allergies. Fermented plums contain beneficial yeasts known as Saccharomyces cerevisiae that have been linked to reducing allergies, congestion, and sinusitis. Why pop expensive supplements when you can reap these benefits from a cultured plum chutney, for example?
  6. Eating fermented foods can give your brain a boost. Exciting new research published in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology found that intentionally boosting beneficial microbes by adding fermented foods to the diet could directly activate neural pathways between the gut and the brain and may boost brain health and prevent depression.
  7. Eating nondairy yogurt can improve bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Research published in the International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition and multiple other journals found a direct link between dairy-free yogurt consumption and bone health.
  8. Drinking probiotic-rich kefir helps protect against cancer and even effectively treats the disease. Kefir contains a probiotic called Lactobacillus kefiri P-IF, which is effective against leukemia even when multiple cancer drugs fail.
  9. Eating fermented soy, known as miso, can prevent radiation injury. It’s not just an urban myth: Medical research conducted in Hiroshima found that eating fermented soy protects against the damaging effects of radiation—a growing concern.
  10. Fermented foods are the missing link when it comes to effortless and permanent weight loss. In many studies the intestines of overweight and obese people were found to differ from those of lean people. Research published in the medical journal Beneficial Microbes found that obese and overweight people tend to have a higher ratio of harmful microbes to beneficial ones. The best way to boost beneficial microbes so as to benefit from their slimming properties is to enjoy fermented foods that contain live cultures on a regular basis.

These ten health suggestions and their benefits are just the tip of the iceberg. New studies are regularly released demonstrating the lively merits of probiotics and probiotic-rich foods.

Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM, lives in Vancouver and is a certified herbalist, doctor of natural medicine, and one of the world’s most popular natural health bloggers. She holds advanced degrees in health, nutrition, orthomolecular nutrition, and acupuncture. She is author of Be Your Own Herbalist and The Cultured Cook: Delicious Fermented Foods with Probiotics to Knock Out Inflammation, Boost Gut Health, Lose Weight & Extend Your Life (NewWorldLibrary.com), the latter of which inspired these recommendations. DrMichelleCook.com.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Join our once-monthly newsletter to get all the latest news & resources

No spam. Unsubscribe any time.