Does Kimchi make you stay young?
Kimchi was selected as one of the world’s five healthiest food by the American health magazine, “Health.” Kimchi is a very beneficial fermented food, enjoyed by many Koreans.
In addition, it was proven that regular consumption of kimchi prevents cancer and slows aging.
A Rural Development Administration (RDA) research team observed the slowing effects on aging effects of aging by applying a specimen of cabbage kimchi to an aging-induced cell.
A normal aging-induced cell became 54% aged, while another cell, which had been given optimum mature cabbage kimchi, prior to being age-induced, became only a minimum of 25% aged.
The cell was able to function like a normal cell, which proved that kimchi has an anti-aging effect.
Kimchi, especially the ones which have been soaked for half a month, has shown the most amount of aging prevention effect.
This is due to the fact that well-soaked kimchi has a much higher activity of lactic acid zymogens.
In addition, the research team proved that supplementary ingredients such as garlic, ginger, chili powder, and chives become fermented by the kimchi zymogens, resulting in increased anti-cancer effects.
According to the research, when an anti-cancer drug called ‘Cis-platin,’ seasoned vegetables, and fermented seasoned vegetables have been applied to a cancer cell.
There were significant observations to be made on the growth restraint of the cancer cell.
The ’Cis-platin’ applied cancer cell showed a growth restraint of about 79%.
Comparatively, the garlic, before being fermented, showed a 47% growth restraint on the cancer cell.
However, after being fermented, it showed an increase to 51% growth restraint.
The same increase of growth restraint, after being fermented, could be seen in other vegetables such as ginger, 29% to 38%, chives, 38% to 48%, and chili powder, 46% to 56%.
These seasoned vegetables which are supplementary ingredients to kimchi, after fermentation, showed an increase in anti-cancer effects.
There was some speculation kimchi could cause cancer because of the substance known as capsaicin in chili powders. Capsaicin is the main cause of the spicy taste in chili powders.
However, it was proven that capsaicin actually had the effect of suppressing cancer.
Also, the highest restraint effect on cancer cells was shown in cabbage kimchi at optimum maturity.
This is because if kimchi is fermented until it reaches an optimum maturity, the kimchi ingredients interact in a way that increases the prevention of cancer.
Origin of Kimchi
Kimchi was created as a way to preserve vegetables for the winter months.
What started as cabbage simply pickled in salty brine slowly transformed into the kimchi we know today, through the addition of various spices and seasonings such as hot pepper powder.
Where to Buy
Kimchi is available in a variety of types and packaging sizes at convenience stores and supermarkets.
For the convenience of travelers leaving Korea, duty-free shops located in major international airports and seaports also have airtight sealed kimchi products available.
Types of Kimchi
Regions, temperatures, and other environmental conditions have led to the creation of more than 100 different types of kimchi.
The most common types of kimchi served are baechu kimchi, kkakdugi, and nabak kimchi.
Nutritional Value of Kimchi
Kimchi is high in nutritional value and has many health benefits, earning its spot as one of the top five healthiest foods in the world according to American health magazine “Health.”
Thanks to the fermentation process, kimchi contains lactic acid bacteria, a bacterium that helps with digestion and combats harmful bacteria. Kimchi also boosts the immune system and helps prevent the growth of cancer.