Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Using probiotic enriched foods can optimize your health

Our ancestors' utilized probiotic enriched foods on a regular basis. This was necessary as a means of food preservation without the advent of refrigeration. Many ancient medicine men and physicians began utilizing them to treat certain ailments. Probiotic enriched foods are one of the most important attributes of a healthy diet and lifestyle. In the early 20th century, Nobel Prize winning scientist Ilya Ilyich Mechinikov attributed the remarkable health of a group of Bulgarian people to their daily consumption of probiotic enriched foods. He named the unique bacterial species that made up much of their fermented products Lactobacillus bulgaricus. He theorized that probiotic bacteria could have a much greater impact on human health than the much feared pathogenic strains of bacteria. Every culture around the world had their own unique fermented foods. The Europeans used cabbage, beets and cucumbers to make foods like sauerkraut, kvass and pickles. The Koreans made a spiced, fermented cabbage they called kimchi. The Asians fermented soy to form products such as tempeh, miso and natto. They also created a fermented drink called Kombucha. Many different cultures also made their own fermented sourdough style breads. Traditional fermented foods Sauerkraut is made by fermenting cabbage often times in vinegar. Raw cabbage naturally has probiotics and enzymes that are exponentially multiplied during the fermentation period. Fresh (not canned) sauerkraut is a fantastic source of living enzymes and active lactobacillus and pediococcus strains of probiotics. Kimchi is most commonly made with Chinese cabbages. There are many other variations of kimchi using cucumbers, eggplants, leeks, radishes, & other seasonal veggies. Often times these are prepared with a combination of fermented veggies that give it unique antioxidants, live enzymes and the special organism lactobacillus kimchi among others. Fermented soy comes in three major forms: miso, tempeh and natto. Miso and tempeh often incorporate brown rice and barley fermentation with two unique probiotic yeast species. These yeasts enhance the bioavailability of the amino acids and produce high amounts of B vitamins. The bacillus subtilis bacterium is used to produce natto which is rich in proteolytic enzymes and vitamin K2. Almost every region had their own raw, fermented dairy products. The Bulgarians ate yogurt, the Indians ate Lassi, the Africans had Amasi, and the Eastern Russia/Slovakia areas had kefir to name a few. Each of these dairy products were fermented with lactic acid based bacteria such as Lactobacillus, Lactococcus and Leuconostoc among others. These raw, fermented dairy products share many of the same bacterial strains. In particular, the lactic acid based lactobacillus family of bulgaricus, kefir, parakefir, brevis, casei, etc. It also provides a variety of healthy yeast saccharomyces species. These include saccharomyces unisporus, turicensis, cerevisiae and exiguous. Finally, these dairy products contain one of the most potent probiotic strains, bacillus coagulans. This combination of probiotic organisms work in synergy to repair and protect the gut and destroy even the harshest of opportunistic organisms such as the Candida yeast species. Many individuals struggle to digest the milk sugar lactose and protein casein. Fermented, raw milk products such as those listed above have not only metabolized lactose but provided large doses of the enzyme lactase to assist in digestion. Most individuals who are naturally lactose intolerant do very well with fermented raw milk products. Milk coming from cows that produce Beta Casein A1 can be problematic even after undergoing fermentation. It is best to purchase fermented, raw dairy from 100 percent green-fed animals that are completely free of Beta Casein A1. These acceptable animals would include goats and cows that have been selectively bread to no longer produce Beta Casein A1. Source - www.naturalnews.com

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