Health Benefits of Fermented Foods After 50
Getting older is a privilege that many people want in their own lives. You get to see society advance, your children grow up, and you may even get to accomplish your dreams.
Many things we want to do in life have to wait until we’re older. On the other hand, there are not-so-great things that we can’t avoid but also come with age. For instance, our bones start to ache, and movement becomes more difficult.
One thing that everyone experiences at some point in their lives is a necessary change in diet. Your health needs will require that you change what you eat, which may mean adding things you haven’t tried before.
Your doctor or other health experts might recommend that you add more of certain foods to your diet. One commonly suggested addition is fermented food.
The term ‘fermented’ just means that the food item has been through the natural process of lacto fermentation, which creates healthy bacteria.
It is a process which preserves all kinds of good things in your food that can make you healthier. Read on about why you should start eating more fermented foods on a daily basis after you reach the age of 50.
They Have Probiotics
If you’ve ever seen a yogurt commercial, you’ve probably heard the word ‘probiotics.’ Ads don’t usually explain this term, but probiotics have some significant benefits, which is why you should try to eat them on a daily basis.
Probiotics are great because they get many jobs done at once. They work to regulate your digestive tract while also boosting your immune system to help prevent and fight illnesses.
People sometimes get scared away from eating them because they are technically bacteria. However, probiotics are actually helpful to your body, which is why they are known as good bacteria.
You don’t need to fork over extra cash at the grocery store to buy specialized probiotic-rich brands or products. You can make your own probiotic friendly meals right at home, even on a budget.
They Reduce Acid Reflux
When you were younger, you probably enjoyed eating a variety of foods, but especially those that leaned more toward comfort than health. Maybe you were able to eat burgers and fried foods with ease.
Now, when you try to indulge in your favorite pastime foods, your stomach burns and you get acid reflux. This is another problem that fermented foods can help fix.
Each type of bacteria in fermented food will help your body in different ways. One bacteria strand in particular, thrives on high levels of acid in the stomach.
Named Lactobacillus, this type of bacteria can calm stomach inflammation and reduce levels of acid, naturally preventing heartburn and helping to extinguish it when it does occur.
Your Digestive Tract Will Be Healthier
Your ability to digest foods will change as you get older. Some people find that they just don’t feel great after eating foods they used to love.
There are many ways you can aid your digestive tract right itself – such as exercising, keeping a food diary or even consulting a nutritionist. However, there might be an even easier way to help yourself that won’t cost you time and money.
Fermented foods aid the digestion process by essentially helping your colon get back into balance. The bacteria that reside in your intestines eat away at foods that your digestive system just can’t break down on its own.
Afterwards, they help your body better absorb these broken down foods, and then you benefit from the nutrients, instead of rejecting them. This means less time in the bathroom for you, and more time enjoying some great food with your loved ones.
They’re Safe for People with Diabetes
Diabetes is a condition that affects many people. If you don’t have it yourself, you probably know someone who does. In fact, nearly 50% of adults in the U.S. have diabetes or pre-diabetes. This condition can be the result of obesity, bad diet or slow metabolism caused by a lack of exercise.
If you have diabetes, you know it’s a challenge figuring out what things – and how much of them – to eat. It’s all about watching your sugar intake and timing everything right.
Trying new foods can be intimidating even for healthy people. The thought of causing your body to go into diabetic shock just because you tried a new food can be enough to keep you on the same diet for years to come. However, people with diabetes could benefit from adding fermented foods to their diet.
During the process of fermentation, the bacteria convert the carbohydrates into lactic acid, which means that they essentially eat the stuff that raises blood sugar levels.
Some foods are safer than others, as with most specialized diets.
If you wanted to eat fermented cabbage, for example, you could do that whenever you like. But some foods may have sugar in them before fermentation, like milk. And some foods will have sugar in them after fermentation, like flavored yogurts.
Having to learn a new way to eat isn’t always the most exciting thing you can do with your time. After all, it’s hard to give up foods that you loved to eat when you were younger. It’s even harder to admit to yourself that your body is changing with age and needs some extra help when it comes to your diet.
You can use fermented foods to make your life easier by incorporating them a little bit at a time into your new diet. They’ll solve some digestive problems and are safe for people with diabetes who want some change in their eating habits. Fermented foods come in multiple forms, so you don’t have to add one food and stick with eating it for years to come.
Try eating fermented foods, or making recipes that feature those foods, sometime soon. You’ll quickly see the positive results that come from helping your digestive tract by eating the right foods. All it takes is the knowledge of how fermented foods will help you and the determination to try them.
Have you added fermented foods to your diet? Please share your favorites in the comments below!
Jennifer Landis is a writer, blogger, mom, wife and health nut with a fierce love for peanut butter and naps. She practices yoga regularly even though her husband doesn’t think it counts as exercise. Fitness and nutrition are her cup of tea. You can find her online at www.mindfulnessmama.com