Kimchi is one of Korea’s staple dishes. A traditional side dish, kimchi is made from salted and fermented vegetables like cabbages and radishes; although it may also include salted seafood, garlic, ginger, scallions, and chili powder. The following are the health benefits of kimchi, followed by a sample recipe.
Kimchi helps counter bad bacteria in the body. According to Mercola, kimchi is rich in probiotic lactic acid bacteria or LAB, since it is made up of fermented vegetables. As per the publication, while several bacteria are part of kimchi fermentation, the lactic acid type bacteria are dominant and the putrefactive bacteria are reduced in the process. In addition, the addition of ingredients and the fermentation byproducts of lactic acid bacteria result to the removal of putrefactive and pathogenic bacteria and boost the functionalities of the dish. As per the publication, kimchi has the same manner as yogurt as a dairy probiotic food.
Kimchi also helps promote the health of the heart and the blood vessels. According to Organic Facts, kimchi reduces cholesterol which allicin and selenium. As per the publication, allicin has cholesterol-reducing properties, enabling it to reduce the risk of developing heart disorders like heart attack and stroke. Then, selenium prevents cellular and tissue damage; in the cardiovascular system, it protects the arterial walls from plaque formation, which leads to conditions like atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease. Kimchi also reduces blood sugar, preventing obesity and diabetes mellitus.
Another health benefit of eating kimchi is the promotion of vision. According to Life Hack, a 100-gram serving of the Korean dish contains 18 percent of the daily value of vitamin A, which is vital for vision and the integrity of the skin and mucus membranes. The vitamin also acts as an antioxidant, which helps the body get rid of toxins and free radicals.
One kimchi recipe is Basic Napa Cabbage Kimchi Kimchee. According to Chow Hound, the ingredients include napa cabbage kosher salt, cold water, daikon radish, scallions, Korean red pepper powder, fish sauce, fresh ginger, garlic cloves, Korean salted shrimp, and granulated sugar.
To prepare, as per the publication, the cabbage is cut to half lengthwise, then crosswise into two -inch pieces; the root end is discarded and the cut leaves are placed in a large bowl. Then, the cabbage is sprinkled and coated with salt. Cold water is added, ensuring that the cabbage is submerged. Next, the leaves are covered with plastic wrap and sit at room temperature for at least 12 hours. After that, the cabbage is drained and rinsed with called water, mildly squeezing out excess liquid and is transferred to a medium bowl before it is set aside. Once done, the remaining ingredients are stirred in a large bowl. Then, the cabbage is added and tossed. The mixture is packed tightly into a clean glass jar with a tightfitting lid and is sealed. The jar is placed in a cool and dark place for one day; the jar is opened to get rid of the gases and is the resealed and refrigerated for at least 48 hours before eating.
Kimchi is one of Korea’s pride when it comes to dishes and it may be increasingly becoming more common in other countries. With its health benefits, it can be added as a side dish in various meal recipes for families and friends.