Did you know that 70 percent of our immune system lives in our gut? It’s true, and this is just one of the reasons gut health is so important. More and more research is coming out about how gut health is linked to many different aspects of our body including mental health. Fermented foods help to promote better gut health by feeding the good bacteria that lives there. Here are 5 of my favorite fermented foods!

  1. Sauerkraut – Probably the most popular fermented food. It’s usually made from cabbage with seasonings like garlic. Add it to salads, wraps or just eat it by itself. Bonus benefits: finding a brand sold in glass 
  2. Tempeh – It’s basically fermented beans packed into a block. It takes on any sauce flavor you marinate it in. It’s also a great source of plant protein.
  3. Miso – If you’ve never had miso soup it’s a must try! The only thing about miso is you don’t want to boil it because then a lot of the benefits are lost so if you do make soup with it just don’t bring it to a boil.
  4. Living coconut yogurt – This is a good dairy-free yogurt option that’s packed with probiotics. 
  5. Kim Chi – similar to sauerkraut but different seasonings and flavor. A lot of them have fish sauce in them but I recommend buying one without it. . 

Note: if you’re new to eating fermented foods start out light! Try a serving (1-2 tbsp) of sauerkraut and then work your way up. One study showed eating 6 servings of fermented food a day could be beneficial, especially for reducing inflammation in the gut.