Fermented foods have been a part of human diets for thousands of years and have been praised for their potential health benefits. However, despite their popularity, many people still struggle to incorporate fermented foods into their daily eating habits due to various health issues. These issues can range from concerns about the sugar or sodium content of fermented foods to taste preferences or even digestive problems. In this article, we will explore 7 health issues that commonly prevent people from eating fermented foods and offer solutions for how to overcome these challenges.
Issues that prevents people from consuming fermented food
1. Digestive Issues
One of the most common health issues that can prevent people from eating fermented foods is digestive discomfort. Fermented foods are high in probiotics, which can help improve gut health, but they can also be challenging for those with digestive issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or Crohn’s disease.
Solution: Start slowly and choose the right fermented foods
If you have digestive issues, it is important to start slowly when incorporating fermented foods into your diet. Begin with small portions and gradually increase the amount over time. It may also be helpful to choose fermented foods that are easier to digest, such as yogurt, kefir, or fermented vegetables that have been cooked or pureed.
2. Histamine Intolerance
Histamine intolerance is a condition where the body has difficulty breaking down histamine, a compound that is naturally found in fermented foods. For people with histamine intolerance, consuming fermented foods can lead to symptoms such as headaches, hives, and digestive issues.
Solution: Opt for low-histamine fermented foods.
If you have histamine intolerance, it is important to choose fermented foods that are low in histamine. Some examples of low histamine fermented foods include yogurt, kefir, and sourdough bread.
For people with allergies to specific foods, incorporating fermented foods into their diet can be a challenge. For example, those with a dairy allergy may struggle to consume fermented dairy products such as yogurt or kefir.
Solution: Choose Fermented Foods That Work for You
If you have allergies to certain foods, it is important to choose fermented foods that work for you. For example, if you have a dairy allergy, you can opt for fermented vegetables, kimchi, or kombucha instead.
Individuals with diabetes may also face challenges when it comes to eating fermented foods. Some fermented foods, like yogurt and kefir, are high in carbohydrates and can cause blood sugar levels to spike. This can be especially problematic for those with type 2 diabetes, as their bodies may not produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar levels. Fermented foods such as sourdough bread or kombucha can be high in carbohydrates, which can cause blood sugar levels to spike.
Solution: Choose fermented foods with a low glycemic index.
If you have diabetes, it is important to choose fermented foods with a low glycemic index. This includes fermented vegetables, kefir, and yogurt.
5. Weight Management Issues
Another health issue that can make eating fermented foods a challenge is weight management. Some fermented foods, like kombucha and kefir, are known to contain high amounts of sugar. Consuming too much sugar can lead to weight gain and other negative health effects. To combat this issue, it is important to choose fermented foods that are low in sugar and consume them in moderation. Fermented foods such as yogurt or kefir can be high in calories, which can make it difficult to maintain a healthy weight.
Solution: Opt for low-calorie fermented foods.
If you are trying to manage your weight, it is important to choose fermented foods that are low in calories. Some examples of low calorie fermented foods include sauerkraut, kimchi, and pickles.
6. Gluten Sensitivity
One of the health issues that can make it difficult for some people to consume fermented foods is gluten sensitivity. Gluten is a protein found in grains like wheat, barley, and rye, which are commonly used in the production of fermented foods like bread, beer, and soy sauce. For those with gluten sensitivity, consuming these foods can lead to uncomfortable symptoms like bloating, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.
Solution: Choose gluten-free fermented foods.
If you have a gluten sensitivity, it is important to choose fermented foods that are gluten-free. This includes fermented vegetables, kefir, and yogurt.
7. Taste Preferences
Finally, some people may be hesitant to eat fermented foods simply because they do not enjoy the taste. However, there are many different types of fermented foods available, and it is possible to find one that you enjoy.
Solution: Try different fermented foods and experiment with recipes.
If you do not enjoy the taste of one fermented food, try another. Experiment with different recipes to find a preparation method that you like. For example, you can add fermented vegetables to salads or sandwiches, or use them as a topping for tacos or pizzas.
There are many potential health benefits to incorporating fermented foods into your diet, but it can be challenging for some people due to various health issues. By starting slowly, choosing the right fermented foods, and experimenting with recipes, it is possible to overcome these challenges and reap the benefits of this nutritious and delicious food group. Some examples of fermented foods include Enduri pitha, Hawaijar, Kadi, Gundruk, Kanji, sourdough, Kallappam, and many others. Remember to listen to your body and consult with a healthcare professional if you have any concerns about adding fermented foods to your diet. With some patience and experimentation, you can find a way to enjoy these delicious and beneficial foods.