Fermented Foods and Longevity and How They Are Related

Eating fermented foods do help you live longer. According to Russian bacteriologist Metchnikoff, people who eat yogurt and sour milk products live longer, healthier lives because of the lactose (milk sugar) they contain. Properly assimilated lactose gives one a healthy and clean intestinal tract. Virtually every race of peoples who have achieved exceptionally good health and longevity, such as the Hunzas, Russians, Bulgarians, etc., all eat lots of fermented foods whole wheat sourdough.

Dr. Johannes Kuhl, a German cancer researcher, says that fermented foods such as sour bread, sour milk, and sauerkraut (not the commercial brands of sauerkraut which is prepared in vinegars) contain natural lactic acid and fermentive enzymes which have a beneficial effect on the consumers metabolism.

Dr. Boris Sokoloff believes drinking plenty of acidophilus cultured milk, which also contains high levels of lactose (milk sugar) is the secret of remaining healthy because milk sugar is the proper food for the beneficial bacteria needed in the human’s intestines tract. By the way, lactose (milk sugar) is found only in milk and no other food! It is not digested in the stomach or small intestine as other foods. It goes undigested directly to the large intestine to feed the beneficial bacteria.

Lactose performs other vital functions in the body. Besides being a food for the intestinal tract beneficial bacteria, it also assist the body in the assimilation of calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium. Researchers discovered that calcium retention doubled, in those who were studied, when lactose was given them along with a bone meal supplements.

Yogurt consumption has proven to be extremely beneficial because of its lactose content. The interest in fermented milk for gastrointestinal disorders became highly publicized as a result of the work of Klya Metchnikoff, a 1908 Nobel Prize receiver, and associate of the Pasteur Institute. Metchnikoff observed that the Bulgarian people had the greatest number of long-lived individuals, including centenarians and older.

He discovered in addition to their large consumption of generous quantities of home-grown vegetables, yogurt was also one of their great staples. He examined yogurt and learned that it contained bacteria capable of converting milk sugar into lactic acid. Metchnikoff developed the theory that toxic substances are absorbed into the blood from retained fecal matter and undigested food residues in the intestines. And that yogurt’s friendly bacteria destroy these harmful bacteria and prevent them from reaching the blood.

In addition to this good bacteria, yogurt also contains high quality proteins, minerals, vitamins and enzymes. Yogurt is a pre-digested food changed to this state as a result of the special bacteria that it contains. Because of this, yogurt is digested and utilized in the body twice as fast as ordinary milk. Vitamin D, B-12 and vitamin K are found here. Vitamin K and all of the B vitamins are manufactured by these beneficial intestinal bacteria.

This prevents putrefaction within the large intestine and constipation. Yogurt is a natural antibiotic. It kills harmful bacteria just like penicillin does. There is at least one occasion when fermented milk products may be counter productive as a healthful therapy, unfortunately. This is when you have a cold. The curds produced by these fermented products can absorb the vitamin C taken in and prevent it from reaching the bloodstream. Also you should also be aware that since fermented products contain acids, you should keep your teeth cleaned, because like any other acid, it will attack the surface of your teeth.

When buying commercially branded yogurt, read the labels very carefully. Many of these brands have such high sugar content they should be labeled as puddings instead. Whey, the yellowish liquid that is left after cottage cheese is made, has similar properties to that of yogurt.

Cheese is another healthful fermented food. It bears the same relationship to milk that wine bears to grapes, which means, like wine, there are countless varieties of cheeses available. When buying cheese, remember the yellow coloring is from a dye, however, some use natural dyes. You can find some raw milk cheeses, mostly cheddar available for purchase at health food stores.