Yogurt is one of the best sources of probiotics, which are friendly bacteria that can improve your health.
Yogurt is made from milk that has been fermented by friendly bacteria, mainly lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria (6).
Eating yogurt has been associated with many health benefits, including improved bone health. It is also beneficial for people with high blood pressure (7, 8).
In children, yogurt may help reduce the diarrhea caused by antibiotics. It can even help relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (9, 10, 11).
Additionally, yogurt may be better than milk for people with lactose intolerance. This is because the bacteria turn some of the lactose into lactic acid, which is also why yogurt tastes sour.
However, keep in mind that not all yogurt contains live probiotics. In some cases, the live bacteria have been killed during processing.
For this reason, make sure to choose yogurt with active or live cultures.
Also, make sure to always read the label on yogurt before you buy it. Even if it is labeled low-fat or fat-free, it may still be loaded with high amounts of added sugar.
Kefir Drink in a Jug
Kefir is a fermented probiotic milk drink. It is made by adding kefir grains to cow’s or goat’s milk.
Kefir grains are not cereal grains, but rather cultures of lactic acid bacteria and yeast that look a bit like cauliflower.
The word kefir allegedly comes from the Turkish word keyif, which means “feeling good” after eating (12).
In fact, kefir has been linked to various health benefits.
It may improve bone health, help with some digestive problems and protect against infections (2, 13, 14).
While yogurt is probably the best known probiotic food in the Western diet, kefir is actually a better source. Kefir contains several major strains of friendly bacteria and yeast, making it a diverse and potent probiotic (15).
Like yogurt, kefir is generally well-tolerated by people who are lactose intolerant (16).
Sauerkraut is finely shredded cabbage that has been fermented by lactic acid bacteria.
It is one of the oldest traditional foods and is popular in many countries, especially in Europe.
Sauerkraut is often used on top of sausages or as a side dish. It has a sour, salty taste and can be stored for months in an airtight container.
In addition to its probiotic qualities, sauerkraut is rich in fiber, as well as vitamins C, B and K. It is also high in sodium and contains iron and manganese
Tempeh is a fermented soybean product. It forms a firm patty, and people have described the flavor as nutty, earthy or similar to a mushroom.
Tempeh is originally from Indonesia, but has become popular all over the world as a high-protein meat substitute.
The fermentation process actually has some surprising effects on its nutritional profile.
Soybeans are typically high in phytic acid, a plant compound that impairs the absorption of minerals like iron and zinc.
However, the fermentation process lowers the amount of phytic acid, which may increase the amount of minerals the body is able to absorb from tempeh