Kimchi is a traditional Korean food manufactured by fermenting vegetables with probiotic lactic acid bacteria. It is the national dish of Korea and has been a staple of their food since ages. Kimchi was also taken to space by astronauts on the spaceship. The multi-million dollar research conducted on kimchi took several years and was aimed at achieving a version of kimchi which would remain harmless and bacteria-free even after exposure to cosmic radiations and remain safe for consumption. That version is referred to as ‘space kimchi’.
Kimchi is a spicy fermented cabbage that’s full of lots of great probiotics. And having the right flora in your gut is important for health and vitality… and Kimchi is one way to provide your body with probiotic bacteria.
Kimchi is loaded with vitamins A, B, and C, but its biggest benefit may be in its “healthy bacteria” called lactobacilli, found in fermented foods like kimchi and yogurt. This good bacteria helps with digestion, plus it seems to help stop and even prevent yeast infections, according to a recent study. And more good news: Some studies show fermented cabbage has compounds that may prevent the growth of cancer.
Lowers cholesterol levels
If you’re suffering from high blood pressure or a high cholesterol amount in your blood, don’t fret. The garlic found in kimchi contains allicin and selenium – both of which are helpful in decreasing the cholesterol reserves of the body. In addition, these substances also indirectly help you prevent chances of developing stroke or other cardiovascular diseases of any kind, due to its prevention of plaque build-up in the walls of your arteries.
Kimchi is beneficial in diabetes. A study conducted on high-fat diet-fed type-2 diabetic subjects who were given kimchi revealed the anti-diabetic properties of the Korean delicacy. The study showed better glucose tolerance and lower levels of fasting glucose after eating kimchi-containing diet in the diabetic subjects. The same study also suggested that kimchi can prove more useful in diabetes if it is eaten with normal or low-fat diet instead of high-fat food.
150 grams of kimchi contains only 40 calories. But it’s not limited to this – kimchi helps carbohydrate metabolism to aid you in losing weight. Additionally, the capsaicin found in chili peppers in this Korean dish boosts your metabolism and makes you use the excess energy in your body, thereby increasing weight loss.
The multi-nutrient packed kimchi is rich in a range of flavonoids and phenolic components. The variety of ingredients including ginger, garlic, peppers involved in the preparations of kimchi are super protectors which are renowned for their beneficial effect on the immune system. They help in fighting infections and are valuable in curing cold and flu symptoms.
Kimchi is a valuable food that helps to reduce the risk of development of various cancers. Studies performed on kimchi samples have validated its anti-cancer properties. The cabbage present in kimchi contains healthful flavonoids, which are known to inhibit the growth of cancer cells.
Kimchi helps in reducing obesity rates in women. Researchers tested the effects of kimchi on body weight in a group of obese women. Women who supplemented with capsules containing either 3 or 6 grams of freeze-dried kimchi every day achieved a remarkable decrease in body weight, visceral fat and body mass index compared to the control group.
Other health benefits of kimchi
Increased antioxidant status
Protection from asthma
Protection from atherosclerosis
Colon health promotion
Brain health promotion
Skin health promotion