While feasting on sauerkraut today during lunch, my 2 year old exclaimed, “I love sowlerkowt!!!” I told him- “I’m so glad you do. Mommy ate tons and tons of sauerkraut when you were in Mommy’s tummy.” He replied, “Oh, yeah, I remember.” I said, “You do? What was it like in Mommy’s tummy?” He thought for a few seconds, then said, “It was dark.” I said, “yes, I’m sure it was- what else was it like?” He said, “FLOWERS!”
Aaah the joys of hearing my son speak are endless. Everything that comes out of his mouth these days is entertaining in some way. Especially when I told him not to look at the sun and he said, “It’s not the sun Mommy, ACTUALLY it’s an egg yolk.” And yesterday when he told me, “It’s really IMPORTANT for me to cross the street without holding your hand.”
Oh, right. What was I thinking?
But back to the kraut. Fermented vegetables of any kind are really important during pregnancy and breastfeeding, since they contain enzymes and probiotics that help digest food and eliminate wastes. This is a huge plus when the hormones of pregnancy slow down digestion.
They also help build up friendly bacteria in the intestines. During the first trimester the vegetables also help alleviate morning sickness. That must be why many pregnant women stereotypically crave pickles, and I ate sauerkraut straight out of the jar during my last pregnancy.
Cultured and fermented foods include unpasteurized miso, naturally fermented vegetable pickles and sauerkraut and yogurt.
Another intriguing fact is that studies show that sauerkraut and other cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, etc., when eaten by women during pregnancy can prevent the babies from developing certain types of childhood cancer, and from lung cancer later in life.
This time around, I’m making my own sauerkraut with the copious amounts of cabbage I’m receiving in my weekly CSA share.
Here is a great and very easy sauerkraut recipe from Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats.
A one-cup serving of sauerkraut has:
- 4 grams of fiber
- 35% DV vitamin C
- 102% DV vitamin K
- 12% DV Iron
- Plus vitamin B6, folate, calcium, potassium, and copper
Enjoy! Don’t forget to feed it to your kids too- they might also love sowlerkowt!