Kimchi is a traditional mix of fermented vegetables that is mainstay of Korean cuisine. Researchers are starting to discover the health benefits of this nutritious and health promoting food. Kimchi is made from fermenting vegetables such as cabbage, garlic, onion, ginger, red pepper and more with probiotic bacteria.
Kimchi is extremely low in calories, fat but quite nutrient dense. Kimchi has been found to contain a lot of vitamin C and beta-carotene. A serving of kimchi also contains many necessary minerals, fiber and phytochemicals. Researchers believe that phytochemicals are to be responsible for much of the disease protection conferred from diets high in fruits, vegetables, beans, cereals, and plant-based beverages Kimchi has been found to contain numerous probiotic strains important to good stomach health. Researchers have compared kimchi to yogurt, stating that kimchi can be considered a vegetable probiotic food, while yogurt is a health-promoting dairy probiotic food.
Researchers have found a link between kimchi and other fermented vegetables and their ability to help obese individuals. Studies have shown that eating kimchi has helped obese people decrease their body weight, body mass index, waist to hip ratio and percentage of body fat. Researchers have discovered that kimchi has the ability to improve a number of metabolic factors associate with being overweight. These factors increase your chances of heart disease and diabetes such as fasting blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure. Early results have shown that kimchi has improved the insulin function and has helped to lower average blood glucose levels.
They are studying kimchi and its ability to stimulate the immune system. Some studies have shown that kimchi may have the ability to decrease the risk of viral infections such as the flu. Researchers are finding that kimchi has stimulated the growth of immune cells found in the spleen, bone marrow, thymus and B cells. One probiotic strain in kimchi is known to increase the production of imminoglobulin A which is an antibody that plays an important role in immunity. More studies need to be undertaken before this claim can be validated.
There are studies being performed in regards to kimchi and its potential anti aging qualities. Researchers believe that the presence of antioxidants and vitamin are the reason. A recent study looking at kimchi’s anti aging potential showed that it helped in regulating and lessening the inflammation that speeds up the aging process. The study found that kimchi was able to reduce the oxidative stress in the cells. It also inhibited lipid peroxidation and extended the life span in the subjects. More studies are being done.