Ask an Expert: Why Are Fermented Foods the Secret to Healthy, Glowing Skin?

Did you know that more than 20 years of research has gone into the development of The Beauty Chef’s natural bio-fermentation process called FloraCulture™? It involves fermenting wholefood ingredients with a ‘mother culture’ containing 14 species of beneficial bacteria and yeasts for several weeks. The bacteria break down the ingredients, making the nutrients more bioavailable for the body to use, supercharging their benefits and creating a broad-spectrum, food-based probiotic for holistic health, beauty and wellbeing.

To delve a little deeper into why fermented foods are so beneficial to our health—and our skin—we sat down with one of our microbiologists, Dr Mike Bridges.

What are the Health Benefits of Fermented foods?

“While fermented foods continue to receive more and more scientific attention, they’ve actually been part of our diet for thousands of years—examples include yoghurt, kombucha, kimchi, kefir, sauerkraut, pickles and miso. The health benefits of these foods are due to the combination of nutrients and ingredients being fermented—often in a more bioavailable form as the enzymes and beneficial bacteria are already hard at work, improving our ability to digest and absorb these nutrients, the natural compounds formed during the fermentation process and a mixture of active and inactive probiotic cells.

Aside from their nutritional properties however, fermented foods also play a key role in balancing our immune systems. They contain live probiotics as well as the cell walls of the probiotics that have died during the fermentation process, and both of these interact with our immune systems in a way that promotes healthy immune function. This is particularly useful when our immune systems attack our healthy cells, leading to inflammation.”

Can You Explain the Relationship Between Immunity and Inflammation?

“Our immune system functions to protect our body from disease. One of the problems we have with our modern diets is that we have very low levels of bacteria. And because the immune system is used to detecting bacteria, and the levels are low, often our immune system can become overactive. That can lead to inflammation throughout the body, and unfortunately inflammation is expressed in the skin. The way we work with an overactive immune system is to put the bacteria back in our diet, that our western diets have naturally lost. Regularly taking GLOW will help rebalance that immune system, reduce inflammation levels and then we see that expressed in skin health. “

What’s the Link Between Fermented Foods and Skin Health?

“Put simply, during fermentation oxygen is removed and so fermented foods become a rich source of antioxidants. Early in the fermentation process, the probiotic cells consume all the oxygen, resulting in an environment where antioxidant compounds are naturally produced. GLOW is harvested and dried through a process that minimises contact with air, allowing these compounds to be preserved. As oxidation is one of the major contributors to ageing, the consumption of antioxidants is able to help combat this.

Fermented foods such as GLOW are ideal for maintaining healthy skin as they provide nutrition through the careful selection and combination of organic foods, probiotics and cell wall material. It’s this unique blend that helps modulate the immune system, minimise inflammation and release antioxidant compounds to reduce premature ageing.”

What Makes GLOW Different to other Probiotic Supplements?

“What sets GLOW apart is that it is a fermented food produced in a mixed fermentation, creating a natural, broad-spectrum of probiotics rather than just one or two strains as in many probiotic supplements. As these probiotics each flourish at a different stage of the fermentation process, the final product contains a mix of live cells, compounds produced during fermentation and cell wall material, the part that elicits an immune response.

The scientific evidence is not strong for the use of supplements, whereas there is very strong evidence for the use of food, which is why we stick with wholefoods. For auto-immune issues, such as eczema, double-blind studies show that in general there’s a positive effect. The ingredients fermented include organic maqui berry and garnet plum and Dunaliella salina algae, and the enzymes produced during fermentation assist in releasing the nutrients from these ingredients.”

Discover more about the beauty of bacteria on The Bio-Fermentary...

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