Fermented Food Benefits

Print Article

Consider receiving Edenews

A brief, monthly, pertinent, email with reliable facts about food, and other matters.

Pin It

June 2017

When the Great Wall of China was built, fermented cabbage was a key to keeping the builders of it strong and healthy. Genghis Khan's army brought fermented cabbage to Eastern Europe. Easy preparation and storability made it a great food for his troops. In Germany this valuable food became known as sauerkraut or sour cabbage. Sauerkraut remains a staple food in all of those countries, and fermented foods have risen in esteem in the face of abysmal commercial food.

Sauerkraut has been an important source of vitamin C and strengthening nutrition for people of northern climates for a long time, especially during winter. It was the first known way to avoid scurvy among early far-ranging seafarers. Dutch sailors discovered this and used it widely. It became common on ships the world over to prevent scurvy because it worked and stored so easily. Citrus fruit replaced some of sauerkraut's nautical popularity as seafarers journeyed through the tropics. Vitamin C synthesis in lactic acid fermentation of sauerkraut remains largely underappreciated.

Antioxidant Value

Fermentation of food is, and has been, extremely beneficial for humanity. Sauerkraut is one of the most beneficial cruciferous vegetables, cabbage. The ancient methods of fermenting it (fireless cooking) significantly enhances value and efficacy, making sauerkraut one of the healthiest foods on earth. Fermentation produces many healthy compounds not found in raw foods. Raw cabbage is abundant in the compound glucosinolate. During fermentation enzymes completely change glucosinolate into several other nutrients, the majority of these being extremely beneficial isothiocyanates. “We are finding that fermented cabbage … is healthier than raw or cooked,” said Eeva-Liisa Ryhanen, Ph.D., research manager of MTT Agrifood Research, Finland. Isothiocyanates are common to cabbage and other cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, kale, collards, turnips, Brussels sprouts, wasabi, horseradish, mustard, radish, watercress, and capers. Fermentation produces organic acids and enzymes that make cabbage easier to digest and aid in the digestion of food in general. They also boost immune strength. This research adds to the growing number of studies showing cabbage and other cruciferous vegetables as the best source of many healthful phytonutrient indoles.

Pure, Traditional Sauerkraut

EDEN Sauerkraut is organically grown and made by the Hirzel family in northern Ohio. Since 1923 they have grown sweet cabbage to make sauerkraut the way their family did in Switzerland. Their cabbage fields are richly enlivened from years of on-site composting operations and organic care. Tree leaves and organic production trimmings become organic soil enriching compost. This brings vitality and moisture holding softness that creates delicious, nutrient dense sweet cabbage for EDEN sauerkrauts.

Hand harvested at peak flavor the cabbage is washed, cored, and shredded. It then ferments in large vats with EDEN Sea Salt for at least six weeks. Artisan management of this process is a multi-generational skill set of the Hirzel's. Five generations, over ninety years experience using traditional methods, and this one family's care of the seed, sprouts, fields, harvesting, and fermentation creates sauerkraut of considerable value. Link to photo essay.

Kimchi & Three Onion

The classic sauerkraut is combined with all organic red bell peppers, onions, garlic, ginger root, cayenne pepper, yellow mustard seed, and chili pepper for a sparkling red kimchi zest to make New EDEN Kimchi Sauerkraut.

For New EDEN Three Onion Sauerkraut, all organic onions, shallots, green onions (scallions), brown rice syrup, caraway and mustard seeds, black pepper, and nutmeg are added for a sweet and savory richness.

Antioxidant potent organic vegetables, herbs, and spices further enhance the health and nutrient value of these two new sauerkrauts, Kimchi and Three Onion in the new 18 ounce glass jars.

Second Only to Mustard

Sauerkraut is second only to mustard as America's favorite topping. Americans consume 387 million pounds of sauerkraut annually, about 1.5 pounds per person. Sauerkraut is not only a condiment. It is a great side dish and a delicious ingredient for many recipes. Sauerkraut pairs very well with EDEN Buckwheat. Try it in soup, stew, casseroles, salads, sushi, stir-fries, as a stuffing for pierogi and on sandwiches. Use EDEN Sauerkrauts for Sauerkraut Guacamole, Tempeh Reuben, and in other free EDEN recipes at edenfoods.com/recipes.

Organic EDEN Sauerkraut is a wise choice for the pantry with no untoward additives of any kind. It comes in 32 oz. and New 18 oz. glass jars. Gluten Free and kosher pareve.