If you haven’t been stuffing your face with sauerkraut on a daily basis yet, do it and pronto! Sauerkraut is nature’s best probiotic — in my opinion it’s a much better source than yogurt which is sadly the trendy face of food-based probiotics (the dairy industry has to be making money somwhere!). Dr. Mercola recently conducted a study to measure the amount of probiotics in saurekraut and found that a 4-6 ounce serving contains over 10 trillion bacteria — what’s more astounding is the fact that a 16 ounce jar of sauekraut contains the same amount of bacteria as 8 bottles of (100 count) probiotics. That’s amazing! Those eastern Europeans were definitely onto something
In The Gluten Summit, 2013, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, told Dr. Tom O’Bryan, ““With every mouthful of sauerkraut you’re consuming billions of beneficial microbes which will be killing the pathogens in your gut driving them out and replenishing the beneficial flora in your digestive tract.” 90% of our body is made up of microbes — 80% of those microbes reside in the gut where 80% of our immune system also lies. Maintaing a healthy gut is VITAL for overall health and prevention of almost all types of disease. It’s crucial that we maintain a healthy microbial environment by eating fermented foods and reducing our intake of processed foods which literally destroy our gut and in turn, our precious belly bugs.
Here’s a little bit of info that you need to know about sauerkraut because the stuff you get alongside your hot dog at the hot dog stand isn’t the same sauerkraut that I’m referring to.
“Not all sauerkraut has health benefits. In order for sauerkraut to have a preventative effects, it needs to be raw. Raw naturally fermented sauerkraut contains lactic acid and the living probiotic microorganisms that are the agents of fermentation. Canned sauerkraut, pasteurized sauerkraut, or fully cooked sauerkraut does not have this healing power, because the microorganisms have been killed by extended exposure to high heat. Cooking and pasteurization also damages other preventative properties. Naturally fermented cabbage is normally made from finely shredded cabbage and salt. The salt preserves the cabbage for a few days while the probiotic bacteria begin to grow. These probiotic bacteria are highly beneficial to human digestion and are the mechanism that turns cabbage into a super nutritious food. Naturally fermented sauerkraut does not contain vinegar. The sour taste comes directly from the process of fermentation. The sugar in cabbage is converted into lactic acid, which gives the cabbage its characteristic sour flavor. The lactic acid also preserves the cabbage and prevents it from rotting.” – Health Impact News
My favorite saurkraut brands: Eden Organic, Bubbie’s, Trader Joe’s, FarmHouse Culture (the key is to look for a brand that is unpasteurized, RAW and fermented naturally NOT in vinegar).
I’ve been eating sauerkraut for as long as I can remember. My mom would make her sauekraut salad recipe with practically every dinner meal. I honestly can’t remember a spread without it. I’m sharing her recipe with you, too, as I think you’ll find it incredibly beneficial to your health and have I mentioned that it’s incredibly delicious? Beyond its health benefits, sauerkraut is darn YUM! If I’m strapped for time, I’ll eat saukraut right out of the jar but this recipe is my frequent go-to as the carrots, apples and celery add a nice blend of flavors and nutrients. I like to have this salad alongside a meat dish like a roasted chicken with cooked veggies. Perfect combo! Enjoy!
- 2 cups sauerkraut jarred
- 1 apple grated
- 2 carrots grated
- 1 celery stalk chopped
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp raw honey
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 pinch pepper
- 1 onion chopped
- Juice 1/2 lemon
- Drain sauerkraut and squeeze out all water.
- In a mixing bowl, combine sauerkraut, onion, apple, carrots and celery.
- In a separate bowl, combine raw honey, olive oil and sea salt and mix well. Pour over the salad and season with pepper.
- Toss before serving.