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  • Writer's pictureRamesh Hirani

Discover the Fun and Flavourful World of Fermented Foods that Fight Diabetes

Are you ready to embark on a tasty adventure that also happens to fight against diabetes?

We're about to take you on a journey through the fascinating realm of fermented foods, where flavours burst and health benefits flourish!


Picture this: Southeast- and Far East-Asian nations boast a culinary landscape brimming with fermented delicacies.


From preserving food to enhancing its taste, fermentation has long been a part of Asian cuisine. So why not bring some of that exotic flair to our Western plates?


Enter the superheroes of nutrition – fermented foods!

They not only extend shelf life but also offer a plethora of health benefits that have made them staples in Asian countries.


Take India, for example, with its vibrant array of fermented dishes like idlis, dosas, and lassi. It's a flavour explosion waiting to be discovered!



Now, let's dive into the nitty-gritty of fermentation.


Brace yourself for a mini science lesson! 


During this magical process, microorganisms (think bacteria, yeast, and fungi) work their magic on organic matter, transforming sugars and starches into alcohol and acids. This not only gives fermented foods their unique tangy flavours but also creates a party of beneficial bacteria called probiotics.


Probiotics are like your gut's personal cheerleaders, promoting good digestion, synthesising essential vitamins, and even contributing to your mental well-being.


Yep, you read that right – a healthy gut equals a happy mind!


The connection between your gut and brain is more fascinating than a plot twist in a blockbuster movie.


Speaking of vitamins, did you know that fermented foods are your body's personal vitamin factories? These incredible microorganisms churn out essential vitamins like vitamin K and the B-vitamin dream team. Your body relies on these superheroes to stay in tip-top shape, so it's time to give them the spotlight they deserve.



Fermented foods have been natural preservatives since way before refrigerators existed. Thanks to their organic acids and antimicrobial compounds, they keep the bad guys at bay and extend the life of your favourite dishes….Say goodbye to food waste and hello to tastier leftovers!



If you think that's impressive, wait until you hear about how fermented foods can turbocharge your digestion. By breaking down sugars and starches, they essentially pre-digest your food, making it easier for your body to absorb essential nutrients. It's like having a personal nutrition coach in your kitchen.



Boosting your immune system is another superpower of fermented foods. Your gut holds the key to 80% of your immune system, so keeping it in top shape is crucial.


Remember those amazing probiotics we mentioned earlier?


Well, they strengthen your gut lining, forming a barrier against disease-causing microbes and keeping inflammation at bay. It's like having a personal bodyguard for your well-being!



And let's not forget about those sneaky sugar cravings. Refined carbohydrates and sugar are like fuel for the pathogenic bacteria lurking in your gut. But fear not! Fermented foods come to the rescue by eliminating those bad guys and replacing them with lactic acid, which nourishes the good bacteria. Say goodbye to sugar cravings and hello to a healthier you!



Now, let's connect the dots and talk about the diabetes connection.


Recent studies have shown a strong link between the composition of gut bacteria and Type 2 diabetes.


By embracing the power of fermented foods, you can take control of your gut microbiome and potentially fight back against diabetes.


With just a small serving of fermented food, you'll be introducing an army of 10 trillion probiotic organisms into your body – that's 100 times more than any supplement can offer!



So, are you ready to spice up your breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a dose of fermented goodness?


Swap out your usual meal routine for dal-based fermented foods like idli, uttapam, or appam.


For lunch and dinner, dive into the world of barley dosa, millet dosa, and brown rice dosa with urad dal – healthy and nutritious dishes that your taste buds will thank you for!


Here are some other readily available Fermented foods:

  1. Sauerkraut: Fermented cabbage with a tangy flavour, great as a side dish or in sandwiches and salads. Look for it in the refrigerated section of grocery stores.

  2. Kimchi: Traditional Korean side dish made from fermented vegetables like cabbage and radishes. It's spicy, tangy, and rich in probiotics. Available in many mainstream grocery stores.  

  3. Kombucha: Popular fermented tea beverage with a fizzy texture and tart taste. Look for commercially produced options in the refrigerated beverage section.

  4. Miso: Traditional Japanese seasoning made by fermenting soybeans with salt and koji fungus. Used in miso soup and as a flavouring in various dishes. Find miso paste in the refrigerated section of grocery stores or Asian markets.


Remember to check the labels and opt for products that are minimally processed and free from unnecessary additives.


Action Steps: Can you include just one of these fermented wonders in your life? Start with just one of the above and embrace the deliciousness and benefits of fermented foods. Your taste buds, gut, and overall well-being will be dancing with joy.

Let's embark on this flavourful adventure together!


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