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Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics -Michigan Academy member -SWMDDA member -American Association of Diabetes Educators -American College of Sports and Medicine Member 
 

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Fighting Diabetes with Fermentation


Foods that have been fermented have exceptional health benefits, especially for individuals with diabetes. Experts suggest that adding a daily serving of fermented foods to your meal plan can help reduce insulin resistance and improve glucose levels.

Many renowned scientists and researchers are trying to change the world by focusing on forward development of ideas, technology, and pharmaceuticals. But there is another group of professionals out there claiming the inverse. They are taking steps backwards to move medicine forward.

Diabetes is a disease that has become a global health problem, costing people their lives as well as countless dollars in healthcare expenses. The increased prevalence of documented cases of diabetes has researchers examining foods, rather than prescription drugs, for antidiabetes effects. Among the many treatments considered to prevent and control diabetes, fermented foods may have the necessary remedying potential.

What is Fermented Food?

Fermentation is a process in which food is exposed to bacteria and the good bacteria go into battle fighting off the bad bacteria that can harm you. While they are at it, they also eat up the carbohydrates in the food. Anything that is aged or cured is considered to be a fermented food, many distinguishable by a tangy, umami taste. Fermentation is also the oldest method of preserving food, as it predates written history.

This process is what transforms cabbage into kimchi and sauerkraut, milk into kefir and yogurt, and alcohol into vinegar. The best part about this seemingly magical transformation is the way it can lower the numbers on your blood glucose monitor.

The Battle Plan

Gut health plays a major role in the fight to prevent diabetes. Most fermented foods are loaded with prebiotics that aid in gut health and create an environment for all the good bacteria to grow. When you begin to supplement your diet with foods that are rich in prebiotics and probiotics, you are actively nurturing gut health and producing positive effects on insulin sensitivity.

Blood sugar is the next pillar to be knocked down by utilizing the acids in fermented foods. The acids in fermented foods block carbohydrates from entering the blood and turning into blood sugar. This ultimately reduces spikes in blood sugar. The same acids also fight to give your pancreas a break and improve pancreatic function. Most fermented foods are already pre-digested or broken down to make it easier on your pancreas.

Choose Your Weapons

How to turn your kitchen into an arsenal of health:

The options are seemingly limitless. There’s much more to fermented food than pickles and sauerkraut. Sauerkraut’s Korean cousin, kimchi, is a suitable choice according to a study published in the Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism. The study concluded that consumption of kimchi had beneficial effects on individuals with prediabetes and results showed that regularly consuming kimchi decreased insulin resistance and increased insulin sensitivity.

Yogurt, buttermilk, and sour cream are ready to fight your dairy cravings as well as diabetes. Kombucha and kefir will wet your whistle and keep you hydrated. Tempeh is the superfood that works well as a meat substitute and will anchor any main dish. Sourdough bread makes an excellent snack or side to any soup or salad. When you are in need of condiments, kochujang and miso make great additions to any meal.

Execute the Mission

Your mission, should you choose to accept it:

Keep fermented foods in your refrigerator, pantry, and a staple on your grocery list. Add some sauerkraut to your sandwich, some kimchi to your stir-fry, and some yogurt to your smoothie. Simply start by adding one serving of fermented foods to your food each day. You will undoubtedly prepare some delicious meals, expand your recipe book, and fight diabetes! http://kendalldick.com/fighting-diabetes-with-fermentation/


#Diabetes #Fermentation

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