1. Degradation of undesirable compounds
Microorganisms present in fermented foods produce some enzymes that may degrade undesirable and antinutritive compounds, for example, Phyticacid is found in legumes and seeds bind minerals such as iron and zinc, reducing their absorption when eaten. However, phytic acid can be broken down during fermentation by some species of Lactobacillus, Lactococcus, Leuconostoc, and Pediococcusfermentation so the minerals become available.
2. Mood and behavior
The brain and gut are linked to each other; just as our brains have neurons, we also have neurons in our gut. The neurotransmitter, Serotonin is made in the gut and found in our brain is thought to regulate anxiety, happiness, and mood. Fermented foods are rich in Probiotic bacteria that help to maintain intestinal flora and thus improve mood and brain health
3. Prevention of Diarrhea and Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Consumption of fermented food is reported to be beneficial for alleviating many types of diarrhea. Some strains of Lactobacilli have shown to improve the symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
4. Hepatic Disease prevention
The Probiotics S. thermophilus, Bifidobacteria, Lb acidophilus, Lbplantarum, Lbcasei, Lbdelbrueckiibulgaricus, and E. faeciumhave multiple mechanisms of action that could disrupt the pathogenesis of Hepatic disease.
5. Protection from hypertension
Consumption of fermented milk with a starter containing Lactobacillus helveticus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae experienced helps to reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressures in hypertensive individuals.
6. Immune functions
Consumption of probiotic-rich foods adds beneficial bacteria and enzymes to the gut. For example, Bifidobacteria are the natural inhabitants of the human large intestinal tract and a large number of Bifidobacterium act as a natural barrier, making the immune system more robust against pathogens by prohibiting colonization or by controlling the intestinal pH level through the release of acetic and lactic acids. A lack of beneficial bacteria allows pathogens to grow to cause inflammation in the gut wall.
Probiotics may help reduce obesity. Restoration of gut flora is, therefore, a crucial consideration to lose weight.
8. Synthesis and availability of nutrients
Bacterial population in the Fermented food can also increase the availability of vitamins and minerals for our bodies to absorb. Probiotic bacteria manufacture many B vitamins and folic acid and synthesize vitamin K.
9. Therapeutic Value of fermented foods:-
• Koumiss- Is an acidic alcoholic. Beverage from Russia is used particularly in the treatment of pulmonary tuberculosis
• Kvass – a rye/wheat-based alcoholic beverage can provide protection to the digestive tract against cancer.
• Natto-a traditional Japanese food made from soybeans fermented with Bacillus subtilis helps to prevent hemorrhage caused by vitamin K deficiency in infants.
• Douchi- Chinese fermented soybean food reduces high blood pressure.
• Kefir – A probiotic cultured drink, kefir contains multiple strains of bacteria and yeast. Kefir is rich in minerals and vitamins, particularly the B vitamins and vitamin K
• Sauerkraut – Easy to make at home, this fermented cabbage dish has been around for centuries. It’s high in fiber, as well as vitamins A, C, K and various B vitamins. It’s also a good source of iron, manganese, copper, sodium, magnesium, and calcium
• Miso – This traditional Japanese paste is made from fermented soybeans and grains consisting of millions of beneficial bacteria. It’s rich in essential minerals and a good source of various B vitamins, vitamins E, K and folic acid
• Kimchi – Spicier than sauerkraut, kimchi is also a form of fermented cabbage and other vegetables. It contains vitamins A, B1, B2 and C and minerals such as iron, calcium, and selenium
• Lassi – Made from soured milk, lassi has been drunk as a pre-dinner yogurt drink for centuries. They are a popular way of achieving probiotic bacteria
• Kombucha – A fizzy, fermented black tea. Yeast turns sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, and bacteria called acetobacter convert the alcohol into acetic acid, giving it a sour taste. Watch out for sugar in shop-bought kombucha, you’re better off making it at home
• Tempeh – another version of fermented soybeans, tempeh is a rich protein source so a good choice for vegetarians
• Yogurt – Lactobacilli bacteria convert lactose sugar in milk into glucose and galactose, which break down further into lactic acid, giving yogurt its sour taste. Live bacteria remain in the yogurt and provide a valuable contribution to gut microflora