If you’ve tried different diets, pills, shakes and you still can’t shift those extra few kilos I might have an answer for you. Balancing your gut microbiome could be the key to a healthier, happy version of yourself.
In recent years, researchers have proven that the type of bacteria in your gut control everything from your mood and immunity to blood sugar levels and even how satisfied you feel after meals. They also play an important role in weight regulation, with studies showing that normal weight people have very different gut bacteria to those who are overweight or obese. (1)
Altering your gut bacteria is a relatively simple and cost-effective measure to improving your gut health and below, I’ve highlighted 5 ways you can use fermented foods like kefir, kombucha and sauerkraut to heal your gut, balance your gut bacteria and lose those extra kilos.
5 ways fermented foods help with weight loss
- The good bacteria found in fermented foods help balance insulin levels
While the exact mechanisms of how probiotics do this is still unknown, there is evidence that some strains of probiotics (particularly Lactobacillus acidophilus and L. casei) are involved in regulating blood sugar levels through modifying insulin levels. (2)
- Probiotic strains in fermented foods send the right messages to your body
Different strains of probiotics have different roles to play in supporting healthy digestion and absorption of food. Some probiotic strains release your satiety hormone which sends a message to your brain that you’ve had enough to eat. Other strains increase levels of particular proteins that may lead to reduced fat storage. (3)
- Fermented food is high in fibre so keeps you full for longer
Apart from the hormonal signals of feeling full and satisfied, the high fibre content of fermented foods gives you a physical feeling of fullness and also helps to regulate blood sugar levels and control sugar cravings that often derail weight loss diets.
- The probiotic strain Lactobacillus commonly found in fermented foods reduces body fat
Several lactobacillus strains have been studied for their positive benefits on weight loss but the most promising research has come from L. gasseri. (4) Animal studies have proved its antiobesity action but a 2013 human study found that taking L. gasseri for 12 weeks resulted in an average belly fat loss of 8.5% for the 210 participants. (4)
- Fermented foods are nutrient dense and low calorie
Fermented foods are traditionally nutrient dense and low calorie making them a great choice for those watching their weight. Many people consider kefir to be one of the healthiest fermented foods available, with a 175mL glass of kefir providing Vitamin D, magnesium, 6% of your daily calcium intake and 6gm of protein among other trace nutrients. (5)
Use fermented foods to help balance your gut flora and improve weight loss
Adding in a daily routine of drinking milk kefir or enjoying a glass of flavoured kombucha is a simple and effective way to use fermented foods to improve your digestion and maintain a healthy weight.
Click here to shop our wide range of kefir grains complete with how to guides for newbies.
To find out more about how fermented foods can improve other aspects of your health like your immunity, skin, energy levels and sleep click here.