Koreans have been enjoying fermented and salted vegetables also known as kimchi for thousands of years. It’s usually served together with steamed rice at each Korean meal. However, this spicy dish is more than just an ordinary condiment.
Korean researchers recently published an ample review of the various health benefits of kimchi as a probiotic. In this research, they cited about 130 studies confirming the fantastic healing properties of this modest food.
In case you don’t know, probiotics consist of the good bacteria inhabiting the gut. The human gut typically contains more than 400 strains of bacteria and the combination of different strains in each person is individual.
- Apart from that, probiotics help to:
- Protect against tooth decay
- Promote a powerful immune system
- Help synthesize some vitamins
- Boost the number of nutrients absorbed from food
- Avert diarrhea
- Minimize the risk of bladder and colon cancer
- Reinforce healthy digestion
Additionally, probiotics in kimchi also enable the body detoxify from toxins such as organophosphorus pesticides, bisphenol A, perchlorate, and heavy metals.
The balance of bad and good bacteria in the gut can be interrupted by using antibiotics. Gut bacteria is equally disrupted by excessive use of alcohol, stress, toxins, and diseases. All of these things permits damaging bacteria to flourish. Now, in order to rebalance the scales, probiotics or good bacteria are required to repopulate the gut.
Interestingly, these good bacteria conspicuously feature in fermented foods such as kimchi. Lots of bacteria strains take part in the fermentation of kimchi but the most noticeable one is lactic acid bacteria. It’s the primary source of many health benefits of kimchi.
Furthermore, all traditional ingredients of kimchi are healthy foods in their own way including ginger, cruciferous vegetables, red pepper, and garlic. Kimchi equally has high levels of vitamins (vitamin B complex, vitamin C, and beta-carotene), minerals (potassium, sodium, phosphorus, calcium, and iron), and some dietary fibers.
According to Korean’s recent study, “kimchi has a long list of health benefits such as:
It also helps to promote skin, colorectal, and brain health. It reduces blood clots, cholesterol, and has some anti-aging and anti-oxidant properties.
A kimchi recipe was developed by the Korean researchers to increase its anticancer effects. In this recipe, they added Chinese pepper, Korean mistletoe extract, and mustard leaf. In lab tests of human colon cancer cells; the mistletoe extract boosts inhibition rate from 62 to 80 percent.
Furthermore, animal studies indicate that kimchi equally displays tumor suppression action. These researchers believe that the anticancer effects of kimchi are mostly because of the inhibition of inflammation, and the regulation of apoptosis of cancer cells.
The anti-aging benefits of kimchi come from its ability to reduce free radical production. Additionally, animal studies show that kimchi improves epidermal thickness by about 37 percent compared to a control group.
It equally boosted free radical scavenging and collagen production. Researchers characterize anti-oxidant activity of kimchi to high-levels of carotenoids, chlorophyll, phenolics, and vitamin C.
Some researchers tested kimchi’s effects on body weight in a group of women with obesity. Women that were supplemented with capsules that contain either 3 or 6 grams of freeze-dried kimchi daily experienced a notable reduction in body weight, body mass index, and visceral fat compared with the control group.
Moreover, serum triglycerides were equally reduced significantly in the kimchi-supplemented group compared with the control group. Similarly, other studies proved that kimchi minimizes fasting insulin, fasting blood glucose, leptin levels, and blood pressure.
Finally, visit Green Med Info’s page on kimchi for more information.