There are incredible health benefits when you start incorporating fermented foods to your diet. Did you know that your gut is the largest component of your immune system? It introduces friendly bacteria into your digestive system that helps to keep illness’s at bay and they are rich in live bacteria that help us absorb nutrients along with maintain proper microbiome gut balance. Research has proven that gut health could affect inflammation, allergies and autoimmune disorders in the body as a whole. Around 1,000 different species of bugs live in your gut. We acquire them at birth (initially in the birth canal) and during the early years of childhood.
Your gut has been linked to contributing to weight loss and for overall improvement of numerous symptoms, including depression, anxiety, brain fog, skin problems, hormonal issues, immune weaknesses, digestive problems, and fatigue.
A healthy microbiome can transform our endocrine, immune, digestive, and nervous systems. So why not start eating fermented foods and give that microbiome some support? Maybe I am jumping the gun but I’d like to call fermented foods part of the new generation of Super foods.
How is fermented foods are good for hypothyroidism patients?
More often than none hypothyroidism patients suffer from an imbalance in the gut flora. There are more pathogenic bacteria in the gut then there are beneficial bacteria. An imbalance in the gut flora can contribute to leaky gut (intestinal permeability) which is one of the requirements for developing an autoimmune disease (such as Hashimoto’s) as per Dr. Alessio Fassano who is one of the lead researchers on leaky gut disorders.
Dr. Alessio Fassano goes on to say, ” Rebalancing the gut bacteria will lead to normalization of leaky gut and therefore help to manage autoimmune conditions. Rebalancing can be done through diet (fermented foods), probiotics, digestive enzymes and/or medications.”
Our beneficial bacteria are affected by processed foods, sugar intake, antibiotics, acid-reducing medications, toxins, and chronic stress.
Not all fermented foods are Created Equal
Having hypothyroidism limits you to certain foods. Consuming raw cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower contain natural chemicals called goitrogens (goiter producers) that can interfere with thyroid hormone synthesis. This can suppress your thyroid and also cause your energy to go in a downward spiral.
Don’t worry you can eat fermented Cabbage, kale, or collards, (as included in “cultured veggies”) will NOT suppress your thyroid. In fact, they will nourish your thyroid. They are rich in the vitamins and minerals that your thyroid requires.
You should avoid all types of unfermented soy products . All soy foods are high in copper. Copper also suppresses the thyroid and usually when someone is suffering from a fungal infection, they will also be suffering from a low thyroid condition called hypothyroidism.
Proper fermentation must be done with salt, NOT vinegar. Salt is antimicrobial in nature, and will inhibit the growth of putrefying bacteria while the lactic acid preserves the vegetables. Also, salt aids in the proper activation of enzymes. The salt should preferably be non-iodized and unprocessed as this contains minerals that help the lactobacilli grow.
Most fermented foods you can buy in supermarket jars or cans have been pasteurized and cooked at high heat, killing any friendly bacteria. High levels of sodium are the downside to savory fermented foods such as pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso and soy sauce. Opt for low-sodium products when possible, or make your own to control added salt; in any case, use in moderation. We need to get those friendly bacteria – and not too much unfriendly sugars and sodium.
Here is a brief history of fermentation from the Weston Price Foundation website:
It may seem strange to us that, in earlier times, people knew how to preserve vegetables for long periods without the use of freezers or canning machines through the process of lacto-fermentation. Lactic acid is a natural preservative that inhibits putrefying bacteria. Starches and sugars in vegetables and fruits are converted into lactic acid by the many species of lactic-acid-producing bacteria…The ancient Greeks understood that important chemical changes took place during this type of fermentation. Their name for this change was “alchemy.” Like the fermentation of dairy products, preservation of vegetables and fruits by the process of lacto-fermentation has numerous advantages beyond those of simple preservation. The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels. These beneficial organisms produce numerous helpful enzymes as well as antibiotic and anticarcinogenic substances. Their main by-product, lactic acid, not only keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation but also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine.
Health Benefits of Probiotics:
Relief of stress and anxiety
Reduces digestive discomfort
Improves mood gut-brain signaling
Protects against free radicals
Anti inflammatory properties
Improves digestive health
Improves liver health
Posted on July 14, 2015
- 3 lbs tomatoes, cored and chopped into bite-size pieces
- 1 or 2 bell peppers, minced
- 1 white onion, minced
- 6 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 jalapeños, minced
- 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
- 2 to 3 tbsp fresh whey
- 1 tbsp salt, plus more to taste
- 3 to 4 tbsp fresh squeezed lime or lemon juice, or to taste
1. If using whey, before you begin chopping and mincing, strain some yogurt until you have collected a few tablespoons.
2. Place the bite-size tomato pieces in a bowl. Use your hands to crush them into a soupy consistency. This will take only a few minutes.
3. Stir in the remaining ingredients, including the whey, if using.
4. Pack the salsa into clean jars and replace the lids and set aside at room temperature.
5. Burp your jars daily to release built-up carbon dioxide.
6. If you added whey, taste your salsa after it has fermented for two days. It may take a couple of days longer to ferment without whey. If you like the flavor, place your jars in the refrigerator to slow down the fermentation. If you prefer your salsa more tangy (or if it’s not ready yet), let it ferment a little longer (12 to 24 hours).
More recipes for fermented foods can be found @ 7 recipes for fermented foods.
There are different types of probiotics. Some are pills, powders, or capsules that contain billions of live bacteria and will help to replenish your microbiome. Fermented foods are more of a nature type of probiotic. They carry live bacteria plus many other crucial nutrients. Many cultures all around the world has its own recipes for fermented foods.
Remember Foods to Promote Thyroid Health
1. Sea Weed
Naturally rich in iodine as well as trace minerals, sea weed has long been considered a food that supports thyroid function. Iodine is critical to thyroid health and function. Without adequate dietary iodine, your body is unable to manufacture the thyroid hormones. Of course, excess intake of iodine-rich foods is also implicated in thyroid disease. Remember: moderation is the key, not excess.
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil also supports proper thyroid function as it slightly stimulates thyroid hormone production and the metabolism. Coconut oil may also help to reduce cholesterol in hypothyroid patients as thyroid suppression in and of itself raises blood cholesterol levels.
Shellfish, like sea vegetables, are naturally rich in iodine – the nutrient that is critically important to thyroid function as iodine molecules are used inthe production of thyroid hormones.
Try avoid Gluten-containing Grains, Unfermented Soy, Coffee, Raw Cruciferous Vegetables, millet, Soy and fermented soy products.
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Health and Happiness,
The information and recipes contained in blog is based upon the research and the personal experiences of the author. It’s for entertainment purposes only. Every attempt has been made to provide accurate, up to date and reliable information. No warranties of any kind are expressed or implied. Readers acknowledge that the author is not engaging in the rendering of legal, financial, medical or professional advice. By reading this blog, the reader agrees that under no circumstance the author is not responsible for any loss, direct or indirect, which are incurred by using this information contained within this blog. Including but not limited to errors, omissions or inaccuracies. This blog is not intended as replacements from what your health care provider has suggested. The author is not responsible for any adverse effects or consequences resulting from the use of any of the suggestions, preparations or procedures discussed in this blog. All matters pertaining to your health should be supervised by a health care professional. I am not a doctor, or a medical professional. This blog is designed for as an educational and entertainment tool only. Please always check with your health practitioner before taking any vitamins, supplements, or herbs, as they may have side-effects, especially when combined with medications, alcohol, or other vitamins or supplements. Knowledge is power, educate yourself and find the answer to your health care needs. Wisdom is a wonderful thing to seek. I hope this blog will teach and encourage you to take leaps in your life to educate yourself for a happier & healthier life. You have to take ownership of your health.
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