What can make a delicious and healthy addition to any meal? Kimchi! Kimchi has been my staple food since longer than I can remember. I’ll happily add it to anything including burgers, pizza, tacos, ice cream...okay, maybe not the ice cream, but you get what I mean. To put it short, I love kimchi and you should too.
Although kimchi has been present in my life since longer than I can remember (literally while I was in the womb), it is not well known to many non-Korean Americans. Recently, kimchi seems to be gaining popularity in America, making its way to standard grocery stores such as Safeway and Trader Joe’s, claiming the superfood title, and being infused into many restaurant dishes.
So what is kimchi is exactly and why do I value it like a childhood friend? Let’s find out.
What is Kimchi?
Full recipe can be found here: https://www.maangchi.com/recipe/tongbaechu-kimchi
Health Benefits of Kimchi
Kimchi is extremely low in calories, only ~33 calories per 100 grams. Although low in calories, kimchi is packed with dietary fibers and micronutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin K, manganese, vitamin C, folate, vitamin B6, and iron (Levy, 2018). Along with micronutrients, kimchi is also filled with various probiotics or “good gut bacteria” such as Lactobacillus and Leuconostoc (Lee, Shim, Park, Heo & Kim, 2016).
Bujňáková, D., & Kmeť, V. (2012). Functional properties of Lactobacillus strains isolated from dairy products. Folia Microbiologica, 57(4), 263–267. doi: 10.1007/s12223-012-0121-x
Gropper, S. (2013) Advanced Nutrition & Human Metabolism. Boston, MA. Cengage Learning.
Lee, K. W., Shim, J. M., Park, S.-K., Heo, H.-J., Kim, H.-J., Ham, K.-S., & Kim, J. H. (2016). Isolation of lactic acid bacteria with probiotic potentials from kimchi, traditional Korean fermented vegetable. LWT - Food Science and Technology, 71, 130–137. doi: 10.1016/j.lwt.2016.03.029
Levy, J. (2018, October 26). Kimchi: Improve Immunity & Digestion with Kimchi. Retrieved November 6, 2019, from https://draxe.com/nutrition/kimchi/.
Maangchi. (2014, June 22). Traditional napa cabbage kimchi. Retrieved November 6, 2019, from https://www.maangchi.com/recipe/tongbaechu-kimchi.
Patra, J. K., Das, G., Paramithiotis, S., & Shin, H.-S. (2016). Kimchi and Other Widely Consumed Traditional Fermented Foods of Korea: A Review. Frontiers in Microbiology, 7. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2016.01493
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