Food & Recipes

What Is Kimchi? The Korean Superfood Is a Natural Probiotic Goldmine

Kimchi is famous for being a traditional Korean food, but this dish has grown in popularity all over the world. And when you find out how many amazing benefits of kimchi there are, it’s no surprise.

What is kimchi?

Kimchi is a spicy fermented vegetable dish that is often described as a staple of Korean cuisine and sometimes as one of the “national foods” of Korea. According to Korea.net, the most common type of kimchi is made by mixing salted white cabbage with kimchi paste. This paste is composed of chili powder, garlic, spring onion, Korean radish ginger, fish sauce, and other ingredients such as fresh seafood. That said, it’s worth keeping in mind that there are many different types of kimchi available in the country, which vary based on local produce and traditions. For example, kkakdugi kimchi is a cubed radish version popular in the city of Seoul, and gat kimchi is a leaf mustard variety beloved in the Jeolla-do Province.

Although you can eat kimchi fresh, most folks eat it only after it’s been fermented for at least several days. As an incredibly versatile ingredient, kimchi can be added to a virtually endless array of recipes, such as stews, savory pancakes, and rice dishes. Or, if you really like kimchi, you can also eat it by itself as a tasty appetizer or as a a side dish to your main meal. Considering the great benefits of kimchi, it’s no wonder why people all over the world simply can’t get enough of it.

Benefits of Kimchi

Arguably, the most impressive benefit of kimchi is that it’s a natural source of probiotics, which are great for gut health. According to Harvard Medical School, kimchi is one of many fermented foods that offers a spectrum of probiotics crucial to good digestion. Beyond the gut, some experts think that probiotic-rich foods like kimchi may even play a role in preventing heart disease in the midst of promoting a healthy gut microbiome. However, probiotics aren’t the only advantages that kimchi has to offer. According to the Journal of Medicinal Food, kimchi also promotes good skin, brain health, immunity, and even some anti-aging properties. On top of that, kimchi is also rich in vitamins like A and B, as well as minerals like calcium and iron.

Just when you think kimchi can’t sound any better, new research emerges that further suggests its power as a superfood. Did we mention that South Korean women born in 2030 are projected to outlive pretty much everyone else on earth, according to a new study? Some experts suggest that South Korean women may have this future lifespan advantage due to the traditional diet of the country, which of course includes a healthy amount of kimchi, according to the World Economic Forum. Is it just us, or does a good serving of kimchi sound even more tempting than it did before?

Well, if it’s true that kimchi can play a role in extending our lives, we can’t think of a tastier way to live longer!

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