Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Kimchi Health benefits
Potential health benefits
Koreans eat approximately 40 lbs. of kimchi per person each year, downing it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Korean astronauts even eat a special kind of kimchi to prevent constipation, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Kimchi was originally fermented as a preservation technique for food during the winter, according to Livestrong. It turns out the fermentation has more benefits than just preservation: It also promotes the growth of healthy probiotic bacteria along the intestinal tract. In fact, kimchi is higher in lactobacilli — one of the probiotics that can help alleviate digestive problems, such as an upset stomach — than yogurt.
Kimchi is extremely low in calories, fat and sugar; high in fiber; and packed with vitamin A, vitamin C and iron. Some studies have reported a connection between kimchi consumption and weight loss, as well as a lowering of blood cholesterol levels. At least one study has suggested the food has the ability to cure birds infected with bird flu, and many believe it can prevent SARS, though not enough research has been conducted to confirm this.