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5 Interesting Facts about Sauerkraut

Posted by Meghan Wilson on
5 Interesting Facts about Sauerkraut

Sauerkraut is a wonderfully delicious and probiotic-rich food with the power to boost your health and infuse much-needed flavor into your everyday routine. 

Using ancient culinary techniques to meet modern dietary needs, this fermented veggie delicacy can broaden your palate, expand your cultural horizons, and promote your body’s optimal function.

For more on what makes this yummy superfood so special, read on for Cleveland Kitchen’s top 5 Interesting Facts about Sauerkraut

1. Sauerkraut Originated in China

The journey of sauerkraut from inception to modern times begins more than 2,000 years ago, in ancient China:

At the time, unpaid laborers on the Great Wall of China needed nutritious food to sustain themselves but often only received a short-lasting mixture of shredded cabbage and rice.

To lengthen the lifespan of these foods, the laborers stored them in “rice wine” — a fermented, alcoholic beverage derived from rice — for extended preservation.

The resulting mixture, the ancestor of modern krauts, was flavorful, nutritious, and durable. Unsurprisingly, its adoption as a hearty dish spread, quickly becoming a culinary staple of the region.

While many people today associate sauerkraut with Europe, it has its roots in Qin Dynasty China, and we have the culinary ingenuity of those laborers to thank for this tasty, fermented delicacy.

2. Sauerkraut Is A Great Source of Nutrients

When crafting a well-balanced meal plan, it’s crucial to mindfully consider both your personal tastes and nutritional needs.

If you overemphasize yummy flavors, you risk a nutritional deficit. If you only focus on nutrition, you might lose out on the flavorful joy of well-made, tasty foods.

Fortunately, sauerkraut doesn’t force you to make either compromise.

With mouthwatering, natural flavors and a satisfying crunch, kraut is the food of your taste buds’ dreams.

It is also rich in an array of essential vitamins and nutrients, such as:

  • Dietary Fiber
  • Iron
  • Vitamin C
  • Potassium

  • Whether you’re struggling to consistently stick to a nutritious meal plan or looking for a much-needed injection of flavor into a successful one, sauerkraut offers the best of both worlds in each delicious bite.

    3. Sauerkraut Can Boost Your Immune System

    Krauts are famously rich in probiotics, essential microorganisms (bacteria and yeasts) that can protect your immune system from pathogens and keep your bodily functions in tip-top shape. 

    When you regularly consume probiotics, you can open your entire body up to a number of immune system benefits.

    These include, but are not limited to:

  • Proper Levels of White Blood Cells to Fight Pathogens
  • Strengthened Gut Barrier 
  • Improved Cell-to-Cell Communication
  • Reduced Inflammation
  • As you’ll notice, these benefits both aid your immune system when it’s under attack and better equip it to fight off future pathogens (viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites), putting you in the best position possible to defeat your body’s biological enemies.

    4. Sauerkraut Can Enhance Gut-Brain Interaction

    Some of the most incredible sauerkraut benefits lie in the dynamic between your microbiome (gut) and brain, which share a vital relationship with notable impacts on your mood and productivity

    Known as the gut-brain axis (GBA), this pivotal connection is the system that connects your mind and microbiome through a complex series of communications.

    While many genetic and lifestyle-based factors (like sleep and exercise) influence this relationship, your diet plays a critical role as well.

    When you nurture and strengthen your GBA through the consumption of probiotics -- like those found in sauerkraut -- you prime yourself for tremendous potential benefits, such as:

  • Reduced Anxiety
  • Improved Cognition
  • Enhanced Stress Response

  • These potential outcomes can have a remarkably positive influence on your mental health, in turn benefitting your emotional health and numerous aspects of your physical health -- such as immune function.

    5. Americans Annually Consume 380+ Million Pounds of Sauerkraut

    With its rich cultural history, remarkable nutritional value, and health-boosting properties, it’s little surprise that sauerkraut is a culinary hit in many countries -- including the United States.

    Americans consume an incredible 387 million pounds of sauerkraut per year, or approximately 1.2 pounds per each of our 328 million citizens. 

    For reference, this is only 1.4 pounds/person behind Germany, the country you perhaps most associate sauerkraut with, and 2.55 pounds behind France, a dominant force in the contemporary world of fermented foods.

    Considering the many delicious ways to combine sauerkraut with a variety of cuisines, we only expect these global numbers to grow in the coming years.

    Whether as a snack on its own or as part of a delicious meal, the reign of sauerkraut is here to stay. 

    Fun Fact: While sauerkraut dominates in much of Europe and North America, kimchi is the king of fermented foods in some Asian countries like Korea, where 49 pounds of this popular side dish are consumed per person

    Cleveland Kitchen’s Krauts

    Now that you know what makes sauerkraut such a unique and delicious superfood, it’s time to explore Cleveland Kitchen’s diverse range of authentic, nutritious, and probiotic-rich krauts:

    Whether you follow a vegetarian, vegan, keto, paleo, gluten-free, or Whole 30 diet, our crunchy sauerkraut offers exquisite flavors, essential nutrients, and vital probiotics to effortlessly boost your healthy lifestyle.

    Follow your tastebuds and enjoy any of our six fantastic flavors listed below -- or a Variety Pack if you can’t decide!

    If you’re looking to take your meal plans up a notch, also feel free to check out our diverse and simple recipes for fun, flavorful, and nutritious ways to infuse your diet with yummy, fermented goodness.

    Last but not least, make sure to keep up with our weekly blog and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to join our exciting world of fermented foods!

    Medical Disclaimer: All information, content, and material of this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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