Fermentation is nature’s chemical magic that turns organic substances into simpler compounds by enzymes that are produced by yeasts, bacteria or molds.
We humans have been consciously harnessing the process for quite some time, to put it mildly — starting in the Neolithic (or New Stone) Age that began almost 6,000 years ago.
In fact, as far back as 10,000 BC, milk would have naturally fermented on its own. The first yogurts would have been accidental, produced in milk-filled bags that were carried on the backs of camels in North Africa.
The earliest types of intentionally fermented foods were beer, wine and leavened bread (made with yeasts), and cheeses (made with bacteria and molds).
After these first fermented foods, yogurt, pickles, sauerkraut, vinegar (soured wine), cultured butter and fermented soy products would later be developed.
Fermentation: One of Nature’s Miracles
For our Stone Age ancestors the metamorphosis of turning simple food materials into fermented foods was both a mystery and a miracle, as they couldn’t imagine what caused the dramatic and delicious transformation of fermentation.
Some ancient peoples chalked it up to divine assistance.
The Egyptians heaped praise on the god Osiris for the brewing of beer and the Greeks thanked Bacchus being the god of wine, otherwise known as fermented grapes.
Fermented honey was regarded as the “nectar” and “ambrosia” of the ancient Greek gods, so the special powers in raw honey have been well-known for thousands of years.
In fact, many early Japanese miso and shoyu (“soy sauce”) breweries would have a small shrine located in a central place that people would bow to each day.
Almased is crafted with soy, raw honey and yogurt via a very special fermentation process.
Fermentation: Super-Charging Nutrients
Fermentation also acts as an octane boost for nutrients.
In fact, it’s not inaccurate to say that the process is a master key that can unleash greater effectiveness and more sheer power from food.
Because of the chemical processes that occur during fermentation, the micronutrients in food are “unlocked” and their bioavailability — the ability of the body to absorb and use them — is increased.
From minerals to enzymes and bioactive peptides, fermented foods help the body to better extract the nutrients it requires from what we eat.
The natural metabolic mojo that happens during fermentation also yield compounds with unique benefits. In this way, fermentation can make a product healthier than it would have been without fermentation.
One study by Swedish researchers found that fermentation increased the bioavailability of nutrients, in this case zinc, by upwards of 240% compared to non-fermented.
Fermentation’s Poster Child: Soy
Some of the most popular fermented foods are made with soy, and include miso, natto, pickled tofu, tamari and tempeh.
Fermented soy — like the non-GMO soy in Almased — is extra nutritious because fermentation is able to unlock the nutrients that are found inside the bean.
One of the reasons why soy’s such a powerful health ally is precisely because of its naturally occurring bioactive peptides.
Peptides are pieces of protein that are built with amino acids. When these amino acids link together, they make an amino-peptide — and when bioactive peptides join together they form the basis of proteins.
These peptide clusters are critical to a whole range of health areas and benefits — such as immunity, gut health, skin health and weight loss — plus they serve as the building blocks of vital enzymes and natural hormones.
The fermentation process used to make Almased sets these bioactive peptides free.
A Fermented Food Nutrition Boost
It’s easy to include more fermented foods in our diet. Some examples are kefir, kimchi, kombucha, miso, natto, pickles, sauerkraut, skyr, tempeh, tofu and yogurt.
We should look for dietary supplements that use natural fermentation in their processing.
As mentioned, Almased’s three core ingredients are soy, yogurt and honey. Unlike regular honey, which is heat-treated, the raw honey in Almased is bursting with vital enzymes and naturally occurring yeast that allow fermentation to continue even after the cans are sealed. In fact, the honey’s natural ingredients are still living and active when you open the can.
A single serving of low-glycemic Almased supplies 27 grams of protein and a treasure trove of amino acids and other nutrients.