8 Foods That Are Good For Gut Health
Do you know that our gut is home to billions of bacteria? These are friendly bacteria that help in improving immunity, doing several bodily functions and keeping us healthy overall. The way we look and think also depends on the gut flora. They are like an army working hard for our benefit. The problem is that this gut flora of ours can be affected badly by the food we eat. Eating sugar loaded and processed stuff can suppress the power of the friendly bacteria. Just like modern food, modern medicines like antibiotics can adversely affect the gut flora.
It would be a good idea to include probiotic foods in your diet. Eating fermented food will do benefit the little guys in your gut and which will eventually benefit you!
Here is a list of fermented food you should include in your diet:
Yoghurt has a lot of friendly bacteria in it. It is also a good source of protein and calcium. If you don’t find the plain version too interesting, just add some chaat masala to it! You can make it even more healthier by adding berries and other fruits. Here is a yummy yoghurt recipe- have a look!
It is like a drinkable yoghurt. It is a fermented dairy product. It is made by adding kefir ‘grains’ to milk. No, kefir not actually a grain, it is just used to start the fermentation process. This drink is more popular in Eastern and Northern Europe.
Coming closer home, we have lassi. It is more common in Northern parts of India. If you happen to go to Punjab, you are most likely to be welcomed with a tall glass of lassi. It is made out of curd, water and sugar. Fruits can also be added to it. At times even spices like saffron is added to it. It can also be salty and the salty version it is called namkeen lassi.
Our desi chaas or buttermilk is one of the most sought after fermented drink. To make chaas, curd is churned. When the butter comes up on to the top, after removing the butter, the liquid that remains is called the buttermilk or chaas. Powdered cumin seeds and salt are added to taste. You can add grated ginger, finely chopped green chilli, mustard and curry leaves to it. It is a refreshing drink especially during summer months.
Kanji is another famous fermented North Indian drink. It is made with dark purple carrots, water and mustard powder, black salt and red chilli powder. The earthen pot in which this is made is kept under the sun for 3 to 4 days before it is ready for consumption. It is a good appetizer.
Kimchi is a spicy fermented dish made out of cabbage. It has been a part of Korean culture for centuries. It is like a tonic for the gastrointestinal tract. You can have it along with rice or salads if you don’t find the fizzy and sour taste appealing. Here is the detailed recipe of Kimchi. Do try it!
It has been found that the bacteria in the stomach ferment the chocolate into compounds that are anti-inflammatory in nature and are good for the heart. You should be on a look out for chocolate with at least 70% cocoa. The more the cocoa the lesser will be the sugar content. Cocoa has other health benefits to offer too like regulating stress hormones.
This fruit is known to have friendly bacteria that produce short chain fatty acids. These fatty acids provide the optimal pH conditions required for maintaining a balance of microorganisms.
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