College of DuPage Nursing Student Jennalyn Mendiola shared with Healthy Lombard that food can often bring communities closer together. In the current world, it is easy to eat dishes from around the world without having to travel far. One dish called kimchi is a traditional staple that comes from South Korea. Kimchi is fermented vegetables. Vegetables are salted and seasoned and left to ferment giving it their signature tangy taste. Kimchi can be made from a variety of vegetables, but the most well-known is the napa cabbage. It is often used as a side dish in everyday life in South Korea, but it has grown in popularity worldwide in recent years. It is beneficial to gut health, has great nutritional value, and is known for boosting immunity.
Fermented foods such as kimchi have high amounts of probiotics that are especially beneficial to digestive and gut health. Probiotics are living organisms that aid in colonizing guts with beneficial bacteria. Lactobacilli bacteria are found in kimchi. This bacterium is also found in yogurt and other fermented foods. These bacteria help to maintain the balance against bad bacteria. Unbalanced gut flora can lead to inflammatory bowel disease and inflammation (Dimidi et al., 2019). Therefore, eating kimchi helps to prevent such diseases. Kimchi can also help with constipation and diarrhea because it creates a healthy digestive system.