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Significance of Fermented Food in Nutrition and Food Science

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Abstract

Fermenting foods can make poorly digested, reactive foods into health giving foods. The process of fermentation destroys many of the harmful microorganisms and chemicals in foods and adds beneficial bacteria. These bacteria produce new enzymes to assist in the digestion. Foods that benefit from fermentation are soy products, dairy products, grains, and some vegetables. The beneficial effect of fermented food which contains probiotic organism consumption includes: improving intestinal tract health, enhancing the immune system, synthesizing and enhancing the bioavailability of nutrients, reducing symptoms of lactose intolerance, decreasing the prevalence of allergy in susceptible individuals, and reducing risk of certain cancers. This article provides an overview of the different starter cultures and health benefits of fermented food products, which can be derived by the consumers through their regular intake. Keywords: Fermentation; Fermented food; Starter cultures; Probiotics; Nutritional benefits. © 2014 JSR Publications. ISSN: 2070-0237 (Print); 2070-0245 (Online). All rights reserved. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.3329/jsr.v6i2.16530 J. Sci. Res. 6 (2), 373-386 (2014)
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J. Sci. Res. 6 (2), 373-386 (2014)
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Significance of Fermented Food in Nutrition and Food Science
M. N. Hasan1,*, M. Z. Sultan2, and M. Mar-E-Um3
1Institute of Nutrition and Food Science, University of Dhaka, Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
2Centre for Advanced Research in Sciences, University of Dhaka, Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
3Food and Nutrition Department, Khulna City Corporation Women's College, Khulna University,
Khulna, Bangladesh
Received 8 October 2013, accepted in final revised form 2 April 2014
Abstract
Fermenting foods can make poorly digested, reactive foods into health giving foods. The
process of fermentation destroys many of the harmful microorganisms and chemicals in
foods and adds beneficial bacteria. These bacteria produce new enzymes to assist in the
digestion. Foods that benefit from fermentation are soy products, dairy products, grains, and
some vegetables. The beneficial effect of fermented food which contains probiotic organism
consumption includes: improving intestinal tract health, enhancing the immune system,
synthesizing and enhancing the bioavailability of nutrients, reducing symptoms of lactose
intolerance, decreasing the prevalence of allergy in susceptible individuals, and reducing
risk of certain cancers. This article provides an overview of the different starter cultures and
health benefits of fermented food products, which can be derived by the consumers through
their regular intake.
Keywords: Fermentation; Fermented food; Starter cultures; Probiotics; Nutritional benefits.
© 2014 JSR Publications. ISSN: 2070-0237 (Print); 2070-0245 (Online). All rights reserved.
doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.3329/jsr.v6i2.16530 J. Sci. Res. 6 (2), 373-386 (2014)
1. Introduction
Fermentations occur when microorganisms consume susceptible organic substrates as part
of their own metabolic processes. Such interactions are fundamental to the decomposition
of natural materials, and to the ultimate return of chemical elements to the soil and air
without which life could not be sustained. Currently the term fermentation refers to
breakdown of carbohydrate and carbohydrate like materials under either anaerobic or
aerobic conditions. The term fermented foods is used to describe a special class of food
products characterized by various kinds of carbohydrate breakdown in the presence of
probiotic microorganisms; but seldom is carbohydrate the only constituent acted upon [1].
* Corresponding author: mnh_rony@yahoo.com
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Significance of Fermented Food
Most fermented foods contain a complex mixture of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and so
on; undergoing modification simultaneously, or in some sequence, under the action of a
variety of microorganisms and enzymes. In addition to the roles of fermentation in
preservation and providing variety to the diet, there are further important consequences of
fermentation. Several of the end products of food fermentation, particularly acids and
alcohols, are inhibitory to the common pathogenic microorganisms that may find their
way into foods, e.g. inability of Clostridium botulinum to grow and produce toxin at pH
values of ≤4.6. When microorganisms ferment food constituents, they yield energy in the
process and increase in numbers. To the extent that food constituents are oxidized, their
remaining energy potential for human decreases [1]. Compounds that are completely
oxidized by fermentation to such end products as CO2 and water retain no further energy
value. Some of the beneficial effect of fermented food which contains probiotic organism
consumption include: (i) improving intestinal tract health; (ii) enhancing the immune
system, synthesizing and enhancing the bioavailability of nutrients; (iii) reducing
symptoms of lactose intolerance, decreasing the prevalence of allergy in susceptible
individuals; and (iv) reducing risk of certain cancers. The mechanisms by which
probiotics exert their effects are largely unknown, but may involve modifying gut pH,
antagonizing pathogens through production of antimicrobial compounds, competing for
pathogen binding and receptor sites as well as for available nutrients and growth factors,
stimulating immunomodulatory cells, and producing lactase. The fermenting organisms
include LAB (Lactic acid bacteria) such as Leuconostoc, Streptococcus, Lactobacillus,
Enterococcus, Aerococcus and Pediococcus spp. [2, 3]. The yeasts isolated are mainly of
the species Saccharomyces, Kluyeromyces and Debaryomyces [4]. Moulds have been used
mainly in milk and cheese fermentation and include Penicillium, Mucor, Geotrichium, and
Rhizopus species [5, 6]. Some of the microorganisms isolated from fermented food are,
however, yet to be identified. In all the foods and beverages examined, LAB is the
dominant microorganisms, and therefore, lactic acid fermentation is considered as the
major contributor to the beneficial characteristics observed in fermented foods. The
numerous fermented food products in Asia can be categorized into five groups: (1)
fermented soybean products, (2) fermented fish products, (3) fermented vegetable
products, (4) fermented bread and porridges, and (5) alcoholic beverages. Probiotics are
involved in all of these fermentations to a varying extent, having either positive or
negative effects on the eventual product. Nutrition is known to influence the heath and can
thereby modulate resistance to infection. So, our objective of this study is to assess the
influence of a fermented food in health of the volunteers.
2. Health Benefit of Fermented Food
2.1. Probiotics
Probiotics are defined as „live microorganisms which when administered in adequate
amounts confer a health benefit on the host [7, 8]. Efficacy of probiotics on survival,
375
growth, biochemical changes and energy utilization performance is immense [9].
Probiotics may be consumed either as food components or as non-food preparations.
Probiotic organisms are sold mainly in fermented foods as starter organisms, and dairy
products play a predominant role as carriers of probiotics. These foods are well suited to
promoting the positive health impact in lactose intolerance, Urinary tract infections in
woman, gut function, Traveler‟s diarrhea, infantile diarrhea, antibiotic associated diarrhea,
helicobacter pylori gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), irritable bowel syndrome
(IBS) and colorectal cancer (CRC), immune function, infant health, atopic disease and
atopic dermatitis for probiotics [7]. Health benefits of probiotics have been shown in Fig.
1 [11]. When probiotics are added to fermented foods, several factors must be considered
that may influence the ability of the probiotics to survive in the product and become active
when entering the consumer‟s gastrointestinal tract. These factors include 1) the
physiologic state of the probiotic organisms added (whether the cells are from the
logarithmic or the stationary growth phase), 2) the physical conditions of product storage
(e.g. temperature), 3) the chemical composition of the product to which the probiotics are
added (e.g. acidity, available carbohydrate content, nitrogen sources, mineral content,
water activity, and oxygen content), and 4) possible interactions of the probiotics with the
starter cultures (e.g. bacteriocin production, antagonism, and synergism). The probiotic
bacteria used in commercial products today are mainly members of the genera
Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. Lactobacillus species from which probiotic strains
have been isolated include L. acidophilus, L. johnsonii, L. casei, L. rhamnosus, L. gasseri,
and L. reuteri. Bifidobacterium strains include B. bifidum, B. longum, and B. infantis.
Different yeast species of probiotics are Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Debaryomyces
hansenii, Torulaspora delbrueckii, Kluyveromyces lactis, Kluyveromyces marxianus and
Kluyveromyces lodderae [10].
Fig. 1. Various health benefits from fermented food (probiotics) consumption [11].
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Significance of Fermented Food
2.2. Preservation
Preservation of foods by fermentation is a widely practiced from ancient time [12].
Fermentation ensures not only increased shelf life and microbiological safety of a food but
also make some foods more digestible and in the case of cassava fermentation reduces
toxicity of the substrate. Although many fermentation processes traditionally dependent
on inoculation from a previous batch starter cultures were available for many commercial
processes such as cheese manufacture thus ensuring consistency of process and product
quality. It is anticipated that the contribution of the advances in lactic acid bacteria &
certain yeast research towards improvement of strains for use in food fermentation will
benefit both the consumer and the producer.
2.3. Flavor enhancement
Fermentation makes the food palatable by enhancing its aroma and flavor. These
organoleptic properties make fermented food more popular than the unfermented one in
terms of consumer acceptance [13]. However, the specific mechanisms by which flavor
generated are still subject to investigation.
2.4. Improvement of nutritional quality
Fermented foods can be more nutritious than their unfermented counterparts. This can
come about in at least three different ways. Microorganisms not only are catabolic,
breaking down more complex compounds, but they also are anabolic and synthesize
several complex vitamins and other growth factors. The second important way in which
fermented foods can be improved nutritionally has to do with the liberation of nutrients
locked into plant structures and cells by indigestible materials. This is especially true in
the case of certain grains and seeds. Milling process do much to release nutrients from
such items by physically rupturing cellulosic and hemicellulosic structures surrounded the
endosperm, which is rich in digestible carbohydrates and proteins. Crude milling,
however, practiced in many less developed regions, often is inadequate to release the full
nutritional value of such plant products; even after cooking; some of the entrapped
nutrients may remain unavailable to the digestive process of humans. Fermentation,
especially by certain bacteria, yeast and molds, breaks down indigestible coatings and cell
walls both chemically and physically. A third mechanism by which fermentation can
enhance nutritional value, especially of plant materials, involves enzymatic splitting of
cellulose, hemicellulose, and related polymers that are not digestible by humans into
simpler sugars and sugar derivatives. Cellulosic materials in fermented foods can be
nutritionally improved for humans by the action of microbial enzymes [1]. A number of
foods especially cereals are poor in nutritional value, and they constitute the main staple
diet of the low income populations. However, lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and yeast
377
fermentation has been shown to improve the nutritional value and digestibility of these
foods. The acidic nature of the fermentation products enhances the activity of microbial
enzymes at a temperature range of 22-25 ºC [14]. The enzymes, which include amylases,
proteases, phytases and lipases, modify the primary food products through hydrolysis of
polysaccharides, proteins, phytates and lipids respectively. Thus, in addition to enhancing
the activity of enzymes, fermentation also reduces the levels of antinutrients such as
phytic acid and tannins in food leading to increased bioavailability of minerals such as
iron, protein and simple sugars.
2.5. Alleviation of lactose intolerance
The inability to digest lactose in lactase-deficient individuals, or milk sugar, is prevalent
worldwide. Consumption of lactose by those lacking adequate levels of lactase produced
in the small intestine can result in symptoms of diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain and
flatulence [15]. Milk with cells of L. acidophilus aids digestion of lactose by such persons.
It has been documented that many lactose intolerant individuals are better able to consume
fermented dairy foods, such as yoghurt, with fewer symptoms than the same amount of
unfermented counterpart. Fermented food yoghurt was found to be helpful in the
digestion of lactose because the lactic acid bacteria used to make yoghurt produce lactase
and digest the lactose [16].
2.6. Improvement of immunity system
The immune system acts to protect the host from infectious agents and a variety of
noxious agents existing in the environment [17]. In principle, the immune system has two
functional divisions: the innate and the acquired. Both components involve various blood-
borne factors (complement, antibodies, and cytokines) and cells. A variety of secondary
plant metabolites including polyphenols produced from fermented food might also
contribute to the beneficial effects. Regulat is produced by cascade fermentation with
several fermentation steps involving five different strains of Lactobacillus. Polyphenols
are prominent in the resulting macerate and published data have shown the antioxidative
and immunemodulating potential in vitro. Several in vitro and in vivo studies have shown
that polyphenols such as flavonoids have antioxidative and immunomodulatory actions.
The high content of polyphenols might therefore be at responsible for the bioactive effects
of Regulat [18]. The trial was to identify a suitable marker that could be used to obtain
significant insight into the complex network of immune function, inflammation, and the
redox state and the impact of Regulat as well as fermented foods in healthy subjects [17].
There are several studies indicating the stimulation of the host cell immunity, both innate
and adaptive immunity, by S. cerevisiae var. boulardii in response to pathogen infections.
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Significance of Fermented Food
2.7. Maintenance of epithelial barrier integrity
The intestinal and upper reproductive tract are lined by a continuous monolayer of
columnar epithelial cells that is responsible for maintaining the physical and functional
barrier to harmful microorganisms, such as bacteria and their products, including bacterial
toxins as well as commensal organisms. The preservation of the barrier function is
dependent on the intactness of apical plasma membrane on the epithelial cells as well as
the intercellular tight junctions. The disruption of the tight junctions can cause increased
permeability, leading to “leakiness” such that normally excluded molecules can cross the
mucosal epithelium by paracellular permeation, and could lead to inflammatory
conditions in the mucosa. Various pathogenic organisms have developed strategies to
either infect or traverse through the epithelial cells at mucosal surfaces, as part of the
strategy to establish infection in the host [19]. It has been shown that exposure of different
strains of S. cerevisiae (human epithelial colorectal adenocarcinoma cell lines) increased
the transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) across polarized monolayers of cells [18]. In
another study, infection of T84 cells with enteropathogenic E. coli reduced the monolayer
transepithelial resistance and distribution of tight-junction-associated protein Zonula
occludens was altered, which caused disruption of epithelial barrier structure [20].
2.8. Prevention of toxic effects of mycotoxins
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungi belonging mainly to the
Aspergillus, Penicillium and Fusarium genera. Agricultural products, food and animal
feeds can be contaminated by these toxins and lead to various diseases in humans and
livestocks [21]. Contamination of agricultural products by mycotoxins is a worldwide
dilemma. The most important mycotoxins are the aflatoxins, ochratoxins, fumonisins,
deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and trichothecenes [22]. Various fermented food
microorganisms are able to some extent and with varied efficiency to degrade mycotoxins
to less- or non-toxic products. Inhibition of mycotoxin absorption in the gastrointestinal
tract is another way to prevent the toxic effects of mycotoxins. There has been increased
interest in the use of mycotoxin binding agents, e.g. yeasts and yeast-derived from
fermented food products, which can be added to the diet to bind mycotoxins. S. cerevisiae
has the ability to bind mycotoxins [23]. The mechanism of detoxification by yeast is due
to the adhesion of mycotoxins to cell-wall components.
2.9. Bioavailability of nutrient
Beneficial functions of probiotic microorganism like yeasts are improvement of
bioavailability of minerals through the hydrolysis of phytate, folate biofortification and
detoxification of mycotoxins due to surface binding capacity of the yeast cell wall.
Nowadays, the products of modern yeast biotechnology form the backbone of many
commercially important sectors, including foods, beverages, pharmaceuticals, industrial
379
enzymes and others. S. cerevisiae, which according to EFSA (The European Food Safety
Authority) has a QPS (Qualified Presumption of Safety) status [24], is the most common
yeast used in food fermentation where it has shown various technological properties.
Yeasts do also play a significant role in the spontaneous fermentation of many indigenous
food products. A review on S. cerevisiae in African fermented foods has been provided by
Jespersen [25]. However, there are other reported effects such as enrichment of foods with
prebiotics as fructooligosaccharides [26], lowering of serum cholesterol [27],
antioxidative properties, antimutagenic and antitumor activities [28] etc. Additional
information on health significance and food safety of yeasts in foods and beverages can be
obtained from Fleet and Balia [31]. There is a great interest in finding yeast strains with
probiotic potential. Different yeast species such as D. hansenii, T. delbrueckii [29], K.
lactis, K. marxianus and K. lodderae have shown tolerance to passage through the
gastrointestinal tract or inhibition of enteropathogens [30]. However, S. boulardii is the
only yeast with clinical effects and the only yeast preparation with proven probiotic
efficiency in double-blind studies [31]. S. boulardii, isolated from litchi fruit in Indochina
by Henri Boulard in the 1920s, is commonly used as probiotic yeast especially in the
pharmaceutical industry and in a lyophilized form for prevention and treatment of
diarrhoea. In a study conducted by Jespersen [25] on commercial strains of S. boulardii, it
was found that the S. boulardii strains morphologically and physiologically could be
characterized as S. cerevisiae.
2.10. Folate biofortification
Folates (vitamin B9) are the essential cofactors in the biosynthesis of nucleotides and
therefore crucial for the cellular replication and growth. Plants, yeast and some bacterial
species in fermented food contain the folate biosynthesis pathway and produce natural
folates, but mammals lack the ability to synthesize folate and they are therefore dependent
on sufficient intake from the diet [23]. S. cerevisiae is a rich dietary source of native folate
and produces high levels of folate per weight [32].
Before discussing anything else the major beneficial effects of yeasts in fermented food are
given in Table 1 [33].
2.11. Biodegradation of phytate
Fermented food has the ability to biodegrade the phytic acid. Phytic acid or phytate (myo-
inositol hexakisphosphate, IP6) is the primary storage form of phosphorus in mature seeds
of plants and it is particularly abundant in many cereal grains, oilseeds, legumes, flours
and brans. Phytate has a strong chelating capacity and forms insoluble complexes with
divalent minerals of nutritional importance such as iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium.
Phytases are widespread in various microorganisms including filamentous fungi, Gram-
positive and Gram-negative bacteria and yeasts [34]. Yeasts or yeast phytases can be
applied for pre-treatment of foods to reduce the phytate contents or they can be utilized as
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Significance of Fermented Food
food supplement in order to hydrolysis the phytate after digestion. The phytase activities
of yeast during bread making for reduction of phytate content of bread have been
examined [34].
Table 1. Overview of the major beneficial effects of yeasts in fermented food [33].
Activity
Yeast species
Heath effects
Probiotic effect
S. cerevisiae var. boulardii
Effect on enteric bacterial
pathogen, maintenance of
epithelial barrier integrity, anti-
inflammatory effects, effects on
immune response, trophic effects
on intestinal mucosa, clinical
effects on diarrheal diseases.
Biodegradation
of
phytate
S. cerevisiae; S. kluyveri;
Schwanniomyces castellii; D. castellii;
Arxula adeninivorans;
P. anomala; P. rhodanensis;P.
spartinae;
Cryptococcus laurentii; Rhodotorula
gracilis;
T. delbrueckii; K. lactis; C. krusei
(Issatchenkia orientalis) and Candida
spp.
Nutritional importance, i.e.,
bioavailability of divalent
minerals such as iron, zink,
calcium and magnesium.
Folate
biofortification
S. cerevisiae; S. bayanus; S. paradoxus;
S. pastorianus; Metschnikowia
lochheadii;
D. melissophilus; D. vanrijiae var.
vanrijiae;
D. hansenii; P. philogaea; Kodamaea
anthophila; Wickerhamiella lipophilia;
C. cleridarum and C. drosophilae; C.
milleri and T. delbrueckii; S. exiguous
and C. lambica; P. anomala and C.
glabrata
K. marxianus and C. krusei (I.
orientalis)
Prevention of neural tube defects
in the foetus, megaloblastic
anaemia, reduction of the risk for
cardiovascular disease, cancer and
Alzheimer's disease.
Degradation of
mycotoxins
S. cerevisiae; Phaffia rhodozyma and
Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous
Antitoxic in some degree.
Absorption of
mycotoxins
S. cerevisiae
Antitoxic.
2.12. Intestinal pH balance
A healthy large intestine (or colon) has a slightly acidic pH, which tends to inhibit or
destroy putrefactive bacteria. Putrefactive bacteria can produce foul smelling wind and are
damaging to health when present in large numbers in the intestine. Naturally fermented
381
foods contain active Lactobacilli bacteria that produce lactic acid, and many other
beneficial bacteria and yeasts that also produce acids, which help to keep the large
intestine pH at a healthy level. An acidic pH and a healthy population of friendly bacteria
will inhibit the growth of undesirable bacteria, moulds, mould spores and yeasts,
particularly Candida [34].
2.13. Improvement of digestion and the digestibility of foods
Healthy bacteria found in naturally fermented foods produce enzymes that can break
down foods present in the intestines, thus making the nutrients easier absorption.
Furthermore, the beneficial bacteria also produce vitamins such as the water soluble
vitamin B and C, making the fermented food richer in nutrients. Yoghurt is a prime
example. It is easier to digest than the milk it is made from, and richer in water soluble
vitamins [35].
2.14. Protection against infection
Gastrointestinal infections including diarrhoea result from a change in the gut microflora
caused by an invading pathogen. It is suggested that viable lactic acid bacteria interfere
with the colonization and subsequent proliferation of food borne pathogens, thus
preventing the manifestation of infection [36]. L. bulgaricus, L. acidophilus, S.
thermophilus and B. bifidum have been implicated in this effect. The beneficial effects of
lactic acid bacteria and cultured milk products have also been attributed to their ability to
suppress the growth of pathogens either directly or through production of antibacterial
substances. Antibiotics have been reported to kill normal bacteria as well, often resulting
in disruption of the bacterial flora, leading to diarrhoea and other intestinal disturbances.
Replenishing the flora with normal bacteria during and after antibiotic therapy seems to
minimize disruptive effects of antibiotic use. Fermented food have been reported to
effective in prevention of various gastrointestinal infections [37]. There are reports of
benefits for sufferers of rotavirus infection, traveler‟s diarrhoea & antiobiotic induced
diarrhea.
2.15. Anticarcinogenic effect
It has been reported that fermented food products can work against certain types of
cancers. Animal studies have shown that lactic acid bacteria exert anticarcinogenic effect
either by prevention of cancer initiation or by suppression of initiated cancer.
Anticarcinogenic effects of yoghurt and milk fermented with L. acidophilus have been
reported in mice. Different potential mechanisms by which lactic acid bacteria exert
antitumor effects have been suggested such as changes in faecal enzymes thought to be
involved in colon carcinogenesis, cellular uptake of mutagenic compounds, reducing the
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Significance of Fermented Food
mutagenicity of chemical mutagens and suppression of tumors by improving immune
response [38].
2.16. Antihypertensive activity
Casein hydrolysate, produced by an extracellular proteinase from L. helveticus (CP790)
has been reported to show antihypertensive activity in rats. Two antihypertensive peptides
have also been purified from sour milk fermented with L. helveticus and S. cerevisiae
starter cultures. These two peptides inhibit angiotensin-converting enzyme that converts
angiotensinogen I to angiotensinogen II, which is a potent vasoconstrictor [39]. It has
been reported that consumption of certain lactobacilli, or products made from them, may
reduce blood pressure in mildly hypertensive people.
2. 17. Lowering of serum cholesterol
Reports indicate that fermented food products to have hypocholesteraemic effect. It is
suggested that intake of large quantities of fermented milk furnish factors that impair the
synthesis of cholesterol. It has been found that L. acidophilus has exhibited the ability to
lower serum cholesterol levels [40]. This promotes the potential healthful aspects of dairy
products fermented with L. acidophilus (or other lactic acid bacteria), since
hypercholestermia is considered to be one of the major factors contributing to
cardiovascular disease.
2.18. Food security and cultural importance
Fermentation technologies play an important role in ensuring the food security of millions
of people around the world, particularly marginalized and vulnerable groups [41]. This is
achieved through improved food preservation, increasing the range of raw materials that
can be used to produce fermented food products and removing anti-nutritional factors to
make food safe to eat. Moreover, there exist many examples of fermentation by-products
which can be safely fed to nutritionally supplement livestock, thereby further
strengthening the livelihood system. Well known examples include the by-products of
brewing, such as “brewers grains” and dried yeast. These provide a good source of
undegradable protein and water soluble vitamins, but need to be stored cool and fed
within a week, or otherwise ensiled, to prolong their shelf-life (FAO, 1999) [42].
Fermentation is a cheap and energy efficient means of preserving perishable raw
materials, which is accessible to even the most marginalized, landless, physically
incapacitated rural, peri-urban and urban poor. Following harvest, fruit and vegetables, for
example begin to deteriorate, especially in the humid tropics where the prevailing
environmental conditions accelerate the process of decomposition. There are several
options for preserving fresh fruit and vegetables including drying, freezing, canning and
pickling, but many of these are inappropriate for use on the small scale: for example,
383
small-scale canning of vegetables can have serious food safety implications given
contamination with botulism (a possibility); but freezing fruit and vegetables is not
economically viable at the small-scale [43]. Fermentation however, requires very little
sophisticated equipment, either to undertake or subsequently store the fermented product,
and has had a major impact on nutritional habits, traditions, and culture. As such,
traditional fermentation still serves as a substitute for refrigeration or otherwise
safekeeping of food, and is also directly utilized to make good of edible leftovers.
3. Discussion
There is need to educate the people on the need of consuming fermented foods for food
security and safety. Safety is of paramount importance. Personal hygiene should be
practiced to complement the overall benefits of fermented foods. The greatest drawback in
the development of fermented food products in the developing countries that many
products are produced under primitive conditions, resulting in low yield and poor quality,
including short shelf-life [44]. Other problems include the lack of appeal in the
presentation and marketing of the food products, as well as the fact that the processes are
often laborious and time-consuming. The technology needs to be improved through
research to advance its potential for food safety and nutritional value. The challenge is to
ensure that technology is used to add value to such products, such as increased shelf-life,
flavor and appealing packaging and labeling. Old ferments are not an efficient way of
preserving the LAB probiotic organisms as poor survival has been reported in these
products. Yeasts and LAB are used in preparation of human foods and beverages, where
they besides having Technological functions confer different beneficial effects on human
health and well-being. Among these, the most well known is the probiotic effect, which
has been proven for S. cerevisiae and LAB species. By choosing appropriate yeast and
LAB strains as starter cultures and using optimized food processing techniques, it is
possible to improve the nutritional value of foods in general. They do have a more diverse
enzymatic profile, appear to have a more versatile effect on the immune system, do
provide protection against pathogenic bacteria and toxic compounds by surface binding
and appear to be better suited for nutritional enrichment and delivery of bio-active
molecules. Besides, yeast is much more robust than lactic acid bacteria which make them
easier to produce and to distribute, especially in less developed areas. It is therefore
encouraged that additional efforts are placed on exploring the health beneficial effects of
fermented food.
4. Conclusion
The fermented foods offer tremendous potential for promoting health, improving nutrition
and reducing the risk of various diseases worldwide. Usually, eight reasons considered as
useful for fermented foods: (a) Fermented foods improve digestion, (b) fermented foods
restore the proper balance of bacteria in the gut, (c) raw fermented foods are rich in
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Significance of Fermented Food
enzymes, (d) fermented foods actually increase the vitamin content, (e) eating fermented
foods help us to absorb the nutrients we are consuming. (f) fermented foods help to
preserve it for longer period of time, (g) fermented food is inexpensive and (h) fermented
food increases the flavor [45]. Advances in fermented food production, technology have
led to a variety of products that suit diverse cultural tastes. Infants, children, adults and
elderly can consume fermented foods for their good taste and their general nutritional
value. Those with special medical needs can turn to fermented foods to provide added
nutrition, soothe intestinal disorders, improve immune function and optimize gut ecology.
Fermented foods show particular promise in reducing the incidence of malnutrition,
lactose intolerance, diarrhea and food security. Although fermented foods are generally
safe, and in the view that certain antimicrobial factors are present, lack of standardization
in the methods used, the environment and the hygiene of the people that prepare them,
will determine the quality of the product. As evidence of the health benefits of fermented
food products mounts, and modern production makes these products available to world
populations, one can anticipate that the consumption of fermented food products, will
reach a new milestones.
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... Fermented food, a historically essential food type in the human diet, is the product manufactured by changing nutrients such as carbohydrates, fat, and protein by reactions of microbial organisms and enzymes in food [3,7]. Fermentation, as a major process in producing fermented food, involves the breakdown of carbohydrates or similar substances in either aerobic or anaerobic reactions [7]. ...
... Fermented food, a historically essential food type in the human diet, is the product manufactured by changing nutrients such as carbohydrates, fat, and protein by reactions of microbial organisms and enzymes in food [3,7]. Fermentation, as a major process in producing fermented food, involves the breakdown of carbohydrates or similar substances in either aerobic or anaerobic reactions [7]. ...
... Second, fermentation can implement detoxification as well as degradation of anti-nutrients. Poisonous substances or toxins, such as mycotoxin and cyanide content in cassava, and anti-nutrient, such as phytic acid, will be inhibited from absorption or reduced in concentration during fermentation, indirectly improving nutritional value [7,8]. Additionally, fermentation enhances the nutrition content of food. ...
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Fermentation has been a significant food processing and storage method in human dietary culture since ancient times. Nowadays, an increasing number of research studies are intensely focusing on the health advantages that fermented beverages and foods have. Type 2 diabetes mellitus, known as the metabolic disorder with high blood glucose level, is prevailing in modern society and seriously harms publics’ well-being. However, several studies showcased the benefits of fermented food in the potential treatment and prevention of type 2 diabetes. Effect of animal-based fermented food, such as yogurt, on type 2 diabetes has been greatly explored, but insufficient studies specifically explored the relationship between plant-based fermented food and type 2 diabetes. This article investigated the health benefits of plant-based fermented beverage and food, including vegetables, tea, fruits, legumes, and grains, on type 2 diabetes. In conclusion, the fermentation process enhanced the nutritional value of the raw material. Fermented food and beverage are potentially diabetes-friendly and desirable, but they must be consumed in moderation.
... Marco et al. [23] proposed that fermented foods could benefit health by modulating the immune system and gut microbiota composition and activity by altering intestinal and systemic function. Studies on the health benefits of fermented foods have been reviewed recently [7,9,32,39,40]. Lavefve et al. [31] examined the health advantages of fermented foods and beverages, including coffee. Fermented grains and legumes also provide health benefits [24]. ...
... The WHO defines probiotics as "live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host". Several research have documented the probiotic effects of fermented foods [7,9,29,30,33,39,40,72,244,245]. Today's most widely accessible probiotics are Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species. ...
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The focus on managing Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is shifting towards prevention through lifestyle modification instead of treatments since the currently available treatment options are only capable of providing symptomatic relief marginally and result in various side effects. Numerous studies have reported that the intake of fermented foods resulted in the successful management of AD. Food fermentation is a biochemical process where the microorganisms metabolize the constituents of raw food materials, giving vastly different organoleptic properties and additional nutritional value, and improved biosafety effects in the final products. The consumption of fermented foods is associated with a wide array of nutraceutical benefits, including anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, anti-apoptotic, anti-cancer, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, immunomodulatory, and hypocholesterolemic properties. Due to their promising health benefits, fermented food products have a great prospect for commercialization in the food industry. This paper reviews the memory and cognitive enhancement and neuroprotective potential of fermented food products on AD, the recently commercialized fermented food products in the health and food industries, and their limitations. The literature reviewed here demonstrates a growing demand for fermented food products as alternative therapeutic options for the prevention and management of AD.
... Fermented foods are known to have more nutritional values than their unfermented equivalent (14). The added nutritional value of fermented foods is because of the presence of fermenting microbes. ...
... Subsequent to cooking, some of the blocked nutrients still stay inaccessible to the digestive system in humans. Thus, this problem can be solved by the use of some yeasts, molds, and bacteria, which can break or decompose indigestible coverings and the cell walls of such products chemically as well as physically (14). ...
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Microbial communities within fermented food (beers, wines, distillates, meats, fishes, cheeses, breads) products remain within biofilm and are embedded in a complex extracellular polymeric matrix that provides favorable growth conditions to the indwelling species. Biofilm acts as the best ecological niche for the residing microbes by providing food ingredients that interact with the fermenting microorganisms' metabolites to boost their growth. This leads to the alterations in the biochemical and nutritional quality of the fermented food ingredients compared to the initial ingredients in terms of antioxidants, peptides, organoleptic and probiotic properties, and antimicrobial activity. Microbes within the biofilm have altered genetic expression that may lead to novel biochemical pathways influencing their chemical and organoleptic properties related to consumer acceptability. Although microbial biofilms have always been linked to pathogenicity owing to its enhanced antimicrobial resistance, biofilm could be favorable for the production of amino acids like l-proline and L-threonine by engineered bacteria. The unique characteristics of many traditional fermented foods are attributed by the biofilm formed by lactic acid bacteria and yeast and often, multispecies biofilm can be successfully used for repeated-batch fermentation. The present review will shed light on current research related to the role of biofilm in the fermentation process with special reference to the recent applications of NGS/WGS/omics for the improved biofilm forming ability of the genetically engineered and biotechnologically modified microorganisms to bring about the amelioration of the quality of fermented food.
... Dalam proses fermentasi, mikroorganisme dapat menghasilkan enzim yang dapat memecahkan senyawa kompleks menjadi bentuk yang lebih sederhana. Pemecahan senyawa tersebut dapat meningkatkan bioavailabilitas sekaligus menghasilkan senyawasenyawa bioaktif (Hasan et al., 2014). Tempe merupakan produk fermentasi yang sudah dikenal oleh masyarakat Indonesia, umumnya berbahan dasar kedelai (Amin et al., 2020;Ahnan-Winarno et al., 2021;Romulo & Surya, 2021). ...
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One of the Indonesian government's strategies to control the spread of the Covid-19 virus is to restrict people’s mobility when going out, which is often called the Implementation of Restrictions on Social Activities (PPKM). As a consequence of this PPKM, access to sufficient food tends to be rather limited. One effort to help people meet their food needs was through online tempeh-making training. This training, conducted online using Zoom and WhatsApp groups, involved community members who were connected through several health-related WhatsApp groups. The participants were all Indonesian from various areas, including the Greater Jakarta area, Ambon, Makassar, Medan, Padang, and even the US. Most of them were over 40 years old and were either employees or college graduates. Considering the significance of tempeh as a food item in Indonesia and a relatively affordable source of protein, the training became relevant in helping the participants to produce their own tempeh at home amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. After the training, all participants were found to be able to make tempeh with good quality and hygiene, with several participants even exhibiting creativity in processing their tempeh into more advanced tempeh products, such as tempeh noodles, tempeh pudding, and tempeh steak. In addition, their positive perception of tempeh as a healthy food item increased after attending the training.
... For example, sauces from Galleria mellonera and Locusta migratoria have been obtained through fermentation, with higher consumer ratings regarding sweetness, acidity, bitterness and umami compared to traditional fish sauces (Mouritsen et al., 2017). These processes were shown to improve not only the taste but also the rheological and textural properties, the functionality of bioactive compounds and the shelf life of the products obtained (Hasan et al., 2014). ...
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