Monday, February 21, 2022

Eating Sauerkraut To Stay Healthy

Fermented Food: Why Eating Sauerkraut Helps Your Gut Stay Healthy

By Manal Mohammed, University of Westminster

For decades fermentation was used to preserve foods, enhance shelf life, and improve flavour. But many people are not aware about the health benefits of fermented food.

Fermented foods are generally defined as “foods or beverages produced through controlled microbial growth, and the conversion of food components through enzymatic action”. That might be pickled cabbage or sauerkraut, the yoghurt drink kefir, sourdough bread and some pickles (only the lacto-fermented ones).

Fermented foods are rich in beneficial microbes and useful metabolites (substances produced during fermentation by bacteria and good for a healthy gut).

Several prominent research groups have suggested fermented foods may offer many health benefits, encourage weight loss and reduce risk of some diseases.

Food organisations and groups such as the Association of UK Dietitians now recommend eating fermented foods more often. For example, fermented milk and yoghurt are now being given to young children from the age of six months to help provide a good nutrient balance, to prevent iron deficiency in populations using cow’s milk and to reduce gastrointestinal infections.

Milk kefir grains. milk kefir, or búlgaros, is a fermented milk drink that originated in the Caucasus Mountains. Motorolka/Shutterstock

Another study found regular consumption of fermented foods could be especially important for low income, resource-challenged communities who are disproportionally susceptible to gastrointestinal infections like E. coli and Listeria.

Why do fermented foods work?

During fermentation, bacteria can produce vitamins and useful metabolites. Fermented foods contain potentially probiotic microorganisms such as lactic acid bacteria. And, despite the short time these bacteria spend in the gut, they help with food digestion and boost our immune system. Probiotics in fermented food also strengthen the walls of the intestines to keep them from leaking their contents into blood so fermented food can contribute to the prevention of leaky-gut syndrome. It has also been found to contribute to prevention and treatment of diseases such as allergies and eczema.

Consumption of kimchi and other fermented vegetables may reduce asthma and atopic dermatitis. Other studies report the effect of fermented foods on reducing risks of type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Consumption of fermented milk products reduced the risk of bladder cancer. Yoghurt-rich diets showed a reduced risk of metabolic syndrome, in older Mediterranean adults where a cluster of conditions occur together (including increased blood pressure, high blood sugar and excess body fat).

Probiotics in fermented foods have health-promoting properties such as lowering cholesterol; one study demonstrated that several lactic acid bacterial strains have properties to lower blood cholesterol.

There appear to be other possible benefits, but more research is needed. A recent review demonstrated the anti-cancer properties of lactic acid bacteria in fermented food on a variety of tumour cells from intestine, liver and breast as they modulate the development of tumours. A diet composed of conjugated linoleic acid-rich foods, particularly cheese, may protect against breast cancer in post-menopausal women. However, not all studies agree and a pilot study in mice even suggested increased tumour growth.

Improving mood and sleep

Fermented foods are also shown to improve mood and sleep. Prebiotics, found in fermented food, are non-digestible ingredients that selectively stimulate the growth and activity of beneficial bacteria in our gut. So eating fermented foods can make you feel happier as prebiotics in fermented food boost the gut’s health and promote the growth of several types of beneficial bacteria. This results in healthy levels of serotonin hormone which helps to stabilise moods, regulate feelings of wellbeing and happiness, regulate anxiety and control sleep. Fermentation-enriched chemicals are also linked to positive mental health. For a good sleep, you need to be kind to your gut and eating fermented food such as yoghurt, sauerkraut or kimchi before bedtime could help overcome insomnia.

During fermentation, lactic acid bacteria produce conjugated linoleic acids which have shown to have a blood pressure lowering effect. If the person has hypertension, they are more likely to experience mood issues (such as anxiety and depression) than a person with normal blood pressure.

Despite the many reported health benefits of fermented food some people may experience side effects. The most common reaction is a temporary increase in gas and bloating. This is the result of excess gas being produced after probiotics kill harmful gut bacteria and fungi.

Unfortunately others may experience headaches or a migraine, prompted by eating sauerkraut or kimchi, and this could be connected to histamines found in a plentiful amount in fermented foods. While symptoms of histamine intolerance may vary, some common reactions include headaches or migraines, nasal congestion or sinus issues, nausea and even vomiting (however this is relatively rare).

Over the centuries many people have eaten fermented food for convenience without realising their health benefits. Luckily many fermented foods are cheap and not complicated to make, giving us an easy way to improve our health and wellbeing.The Conversation

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

2022 Color Trends

These 2022 Color Trends Make A Case For Throwing Out Your LBDFacebo


When I’m picking out an outfit, color is everything to me. Nailing the perfect hue can completely change the vibes of a knitwear-denim combo, a great dress or any other look I’m dreaming up. And while I definitely enjoy wearing my favorite colors and the shades I think suit my complexion, I’m always looking at what’s trending for new ideas to inspire me. Luckily, the color trends for 2022 as predicted by the runways are all bright as can be. Let’s break ’em down, shall we?

According to fashion’s top designers, we’re in for a very lemon-lime 2022. Just look at the color palette! Lime green, saturated yellow, classic Kelly green and sunset orange are all trending hues incorporated on the Spring/Summer 2022 runways, each with its own special tang.

Christian Siriano paired a tea-length lime gown with a matching hat; Proenza Schouler made me crave a tailored orange suit out of absolutely nowhere; Jason Wu proved dressing like the sun is simple with the right yellow gown and, last but not least, Yuhan Wang proved Kelly green is far too gorgeous to be classified as “grassy” ever again.

That said, we’ll also be singing the blues—in a variety of saturated shades! See how easy it is to get carried away with these punchy hues? Below, read on for runway inspo plus all the deets on 2022’s trending colors.

Primary Blue

Lacoste; Vetements; Loewe/Instagram.

Kelly Green is the color of right now (more on that further down) but royal blue is the saturated hue that will knock it off its throne in a matter of months. Lacoste and Loewe explored the primary hue in their Spring/Summer 2022 collections, and Vetements went all out with it for their Fall/Winter 2022 range. Just be careful when pairing with red and white, unless you want to go full-on Americana.

Tangy Lime


Muted sage green was one of 2021’s most in-demand hues, so this vibrant lime green sparks some serious joy for Spring/Summer 2022. Runway looks by Cinq a Sept, Prabal Gurung and Christian Siriano featured the shade by way of satin mini dresses, pilgrim-chic midis and tea-length gowns with matching headgear. When styling this limeade shade, let it stand alone and stick with black or white footwear that doesn’t compete.


Hot Orange


Forget creamsicle hues—Spring/Summer 2022 is all about choosing the brightest orange you can find and wearing it from head to toe. Designers like Proenza Schouler, Collina Strada and Christian Siriano all showed monochrome orange ensembles on their runways, so yes, you may be able to justify a pair of orange heels. Or, you can take a page from Proenza’s book and add a little contrast with a blue bag and some classic black sandals for edge.



Rokh; Nina Ricci; Stella McCartney/iMaxTree.

I know what you’re thinking, and yes, this is similar to the royal blue mentioned earlier. But it’s different! Balenciaga, Nina Ricci, Stella McCartney and Rokh all showed a more cerulean blue in their Spring/Summer 2022 shows. Of course, you can revisit Miranda Priestly’s monologue from The Devil Wears Prada to learn about the hue’s true fashion origins.


Radiant Yellow


This Spring/Summer 2022 trend perfectly embodies the idea of a sunny disposition. Yellow is in, y’all! In 2021, a buttery, pale yellow was a chic option to opt for over cream, but in 2022 it’s all about the classic, almost-neon sunshine hue. Jason Wu, Sergio Hudson and Rodarte all showed the shade in different ways, with Wu gracing us with an off-the-shoulder gown, Hudson staying true to his impeccable suiting and Rodarte upping the ante with a beaded fringe frock. Whatever way you wear it, this color is guaranteed to brighten your mood.


Kelly Green


Last but never ever least, my personal favorite of 2022’s top trending hues: Kelly green. It’s rich! It’s playful! It’s bold! It’s pretty, don’tcha think? Green is unlike any other color, so skip the LBDs and opt for something far more fun instead. Particularly at London Fashion Week, this shade ruled the runway, with Supriya Lele, Yuhan Wang and BMUET(TE) giving it a go.  No more waiting for Christmas to pull out my best green dress!