by Sonja Bacus, Nutritionist, Paracelsus Clinic, Switzerland
Before we had refrigerators and freezers foods were successfully preserved by lactic acid fermentation.
Sauerkraut is still highly popular in certain regional cuisines like especially the Alsatian one. In Asia, Kimchi and Kombucha are popular, in Eastern Europe sour pickled gherkins, in the Mediterranean area there are olives, or there is the Russian national drink Kvass or Kanne Bread Drink from Germany.
Currently, fermented foods play an important role when it comes to uncooked vegetarian foods.
Lactic acid fermentation is a natural process. Under specific conditions (water and oxygen deprivation), ever-present lactic acid bacteria convert carbohydrates contained by the foods to lactic acid and thus create vital energy, ensure preservation, and retain the flavor as well as high vitamin and enzyme contents with probiotic properties.
This lactic acid has nothing to do with milk!
Levorotatory and dextrorotatory lactic acid
Specific bifido- and lacto bacteria convert sugar to dextrorotatory lactic acid. However, if there are not enough of these bacteria present in the body (especially the intestines) the sugar will be fermented instead. In this case the result is the less desired levorotatory lactic acid.
Levorotatory lactic acid verifiably promotes histoid over-acidification.
Acidified tissue is a base for diseases!
For that reason it is important to always ensure a sound bacterial balance, which results in a sound microbiome = all our bacteria in total.
The lactic acid that is product of the fermented foods provides these bacteria with perfect surroundings for their survival and reproduction. The accelerate the feces‘ passage through the intestines, which means harmful substances are excreted faster and the putrefaction frequently found in people’s intestines these days is being prevented.
Lactic acid-fermented foods offer these advantages:
- They help saving our genetic material by preventing pathogenic substances from settling in the intestines.
- They improve the absorption of and supply with vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes and facilitate better digestibility by fermentation.
- They ensure high and stable vitamin contents.
- They prevent pathogenic and promote healthy bacteria by organic acids being produced in the intestines. Thus they ensure a sound intestinal flora.
- They bind heavy metals and are thus highly recommended for detoxification treatments.
- They are easily stored without any electricity.
- Fermentation is thus the perfect preservation method for wholesome diets and for the environment.
Also dietary recommendations for cancer patients increasingly advocate fermented food. But why should you wait until you’ve got a problem?
However, fermented foods available at shops have frequently not been subjected to real fermentation but have been pickled in vinegar and pasteurized instead. It is thus best to buy fresh food and ferment it at home.
The internet and various books provide lots of information on how to do this. Or, read how to produce your own fermented vegetables.
– Sonja Bacus, Nutritionist, Paracelsus Clinic, Switzerland