A client reached out – she eliminated all dairy due to intestinal discomfort and had heard that sauerkraut may complement her diet with probiotics, but wasn’t sure which one to buy.
Great Question! With so many items on the shelves of modern grocery stores…
Most fermented foods, like sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir and yogurt offer probiotics, since fermentation in them favors good bacteria to grow. Here’s what to look for on the label:
🔺Ingredients of properly prepared sauerkraut are cabbage and water (maybe some spices like salt pepper) but NEVER vinegar. Vinegar aids in pickling – a process of preservation in brine, while fermentation is a process of bacteria eating up sugars in the food and multiplying, thus becoming our essential probiotics. I found d Trader Joe’s and Bubbies sauerkraut to be the best.
🔺Sauerkraut contains way more beneficial bacteria than supplements. A 2 oz sample (tested by Dr. Mercola) is comparable to 30 capsules of 100 mil probiotics each! Crazy! Thought of course, results vary based on the type of sauerkraut, preparation methods, salt content and temperature.
🔺You can make your own sauerkraut, there are plenty of recipes online (remember not to pickle it with vinegar). It’s way cheaper than high-priced probiotics (plus you never know what kinda cat in a bag your are getting – FDA has no authority over supplement industry, which is scary…).
🔺Moderation is key, as with everything else. Too much of a good thing is not necessarily better, as too much of good bacteria can still disrupt the balance in your gut, so start slowly, experiment with small amounts, watch for your tummy reactions and overall state. Modify as needed.