lactofermented cabbage is still a goitrogen?!? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 24 Old 07-17-2009, 11:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yikes, just read these articles saying that my beloved sauerkraut is still hurting my thyroid, even if I eat extra iodine.

http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/...crucifers.html

http://www.westonaprice.org/basicnut...crucifers.html

I'm crushed, I love to eat it by the bowlful, not in "condiment sized portions." It is the only thing that has been helping me to avoid constipation this pregnancy, too.

Guess it's time for me to finally try the pickled cucumbers recipe in NT...

(OT: Does anyone have a recommendation for a veggie to sub for cabbage in kim chee? Already thought of daikon, but I guess it's out too...)

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#2 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 12:43 AM
 
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I've been holding of on the sauerkraut for this verry reason. I am throwing caution to the wind now though, given that I will only eat it in small portions, it's got more benefits than the strawberries or peanut butter that I splurge on from time to time, so darn it I'm going to do it!

I don't know if there's any way to swing it, but heating goitrogens removes the goitrogenic (?) make up of it....perhaps heating first and then fermenting or vise versa? if you're desperate.

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#3 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 11:04 AM
 
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So, this is the case w/ all crucifers? Ahhhh! One of my FAVE cultured veggie blends includes cabbage and radishes and kale...

I need to look more into this! Thanks for posting!

Lauren, wife to my dear and mama to amazing River
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#4 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 11:20 AM
 
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Do Koreans have thyroid issues from all of the kimchi they eat?

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#5 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 11:48 AM
 
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I think something may be a little off on this, because lacto fermentation pre-digests the cabage.
I would only be concerned if you had a severe thyroid problem that was not resolving.

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#6 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 02:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulaJoAnne View Post
I think something may be a little off on this, because lacto fermentation pre-digests the cabage.
Here is an excerpt about the effects of fermenting cabbage from the Wise Traditions article:

Quote:
Fermentation of sauerkraut actually activates the goitrogens from their precursors. It also has the beneficial effect of reducing the nitrile content to half of what would be generated by cabbage upon digestion.18,21 Since nitriles appear to be more toxic than goitrogens and their effects cannot be mitigated by dietary iodine, the overall effect of fermentation is positive. More importantly, if sauerkraut is used as a condiment, the amount of goitrogens consumed is very low and very unlikely to exert any harm. However, it is important to realize that unreasonably high intakes of sauerkraut could have adverse effects.
Both articles are written by the same person--has anyone else looked into this? I'm interested in reading more about this!!!! ETA: I'm wrong on that--the nourishing gourmet article just references the other author on her blog.

And this has me thinking as well:
Quote:
A number of leafy crucifers that no longer exist were used throughout Europe as salad vegetables and scurvy remedies from the sixteenth through the nineteenth centuries.3 Familiar crucifers such as cabbage, radish, turnip, mustard and horseradish also flourished throughout Europe by the sixteenth century.6 Cabbage itself reached cult status as a cure for all diseases.

According to Antonio Mizauld, a sixteenth century Parisian professor of medicine, the Germans and Flemish had a custom of consuming cabbage before and after meals, which protected them from being "overtaken by the wine which they never tire of drinking and with which they are always ready to moisten their throats."
I'm wondering about the history of saurkraut in Europe--were there really awesome sources of iodine being eaten w/ kraut? (I'm thinking that Asian cultures and their heavy consumption of fish/sea veggies probably balances out the crucifers found in kimchi, etc.) But how did the Europeans balance that out? Hmmmmm...

Also, I wonder if consuming iodine rich foods at one part of the day, and raw crucifers at a different part of the day would make a difference? I don't quite understand how the crucifers block iodine absorption...

I too like eating bowlfuls of my kraut mix...I'm definitely going to keep looking into this!!!! (I just got back from the farmer's market though, and I'll be making a ginger/garlic/onion/carrot mix of fermented veggies today, leaving out the cabbage and radishes I wanted to add in light of this info...)

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#7 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 02:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulaJoAnne View Post
I would only be concerned if you had a severe thyroid problem that was not resolving.
This is just what the World's Healthiest Foods site states:

Quote:
Goitrogens and health

In the absence of thyroid problems, there is no research evidence to suggest that goitrogenic foods will negatively impact your health. In fact, the opposite is true: soy foods and cruciferous vegetables have unique nutritional value, and intake of these foods has been associated with decreased risk of disease in many research studies. That's one of the reasons we've included both types of food among the World's Healthiest Foods!

Because carefully controlled research studies have yet to take place on the relationship between goitrogenic foods and thyroid hormone deficiency, healthcare practitioners differ greatly on their perspectives as to whether a person who has thyroid problems, and notably a thyroid hormone deficiency, should limit their intake of goitrogenic foods. Most practitioners use words like "overconsumption" or "excessive" to describe the kind of goitrogen intake that would be a problem for individuals with thyroid hormone deficiency. Here the goal is not to eliminate goitrogenic foods from the meal plan, but to limit intake so that it falls into a reasonable range.

Interesting. I also wonder what would be considered "excessive".

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#8 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 02:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
This is just what the World's Healthiest Foods site states:




Interesting. I also wonder what would be considered "excessive".
I hafta take anyone's advice who promotes soy consumption with a grain of salt...

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#9 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 06:07 PM
 
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I hafta take anyone's advice who promotes soy consumption with a grain of salt...
I totally hear you--I'm just interested in finding more info on all of this from various sources. I really *don't* want to limit my kraut intake, but want to be sure I'm not eating harmful amounts...

Any more links or thoughts on all this (anyone)? All I'm finding are studies/articles on folks w/ actual goiter or thyroid problems...

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#10 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 07:11 PM
 
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Here is an excerpt from Chris Masterjohn - Thyroid Toxins: The Double-Edged Swords of the Kingdom Plantae

Quote:
These foods are not inherently unhealthy but simply contain chemicals that have the capacity to harm the health of some people under some circumstances; this is true of all foods. Experience always trumps theory, so the individual should use this information as but one tool with which she or he can experiment to find the most appropriate diet for herself or himself.
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#11 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 10:06 PM
 
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You all do know, that fermented foods are meant to be condiments, right?
They are not meant to be eaten by the bowlfull, but as a cooling side, to a meal.
I am remembering that kraut does have a cooling effect on the body, so its best eaten in small amounts.

Guess it does play out that it can interfere.
But then again, any food can be a problem if abused.
So, all things good in moderation.

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#12 of 24 Old 07-18-2009, 10:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulaJoAnne View Post
You all do know, that fermented foods are meant to be condiments, right?
They are not meant to be eaten by the bowlfull, but as a cooling side, to a meal.
: Hee hee--some things are just sooooo good! It's hard to stop!

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#13 of 24 Old 08-10-2009, 10:41 PM
 
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http://www.bodyecology.com/06/11/16/..._nutrition.php

Donna Gates (Body Ecology Diet) says that fermenting crucifers decreases the thyroid suppressing effects...

Just wanted to post that here. This is a topic I'm still looking into! Also, I found this: http://renegadehealth.com/blog/the-r...n-the-thyroid/ but was unable to watch it all as my comp. crashed in the middle of it and won't load it again...I'm interested in hearing what it says...(and learning more about the source!)

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#14 of 24 Old 08-10-2009, 11:18 PM
 
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I don't know what to think about all the articles, but I really just stick to the basics and say as a comment when I don't know what is right "eat what is traditional"

But as a personal thought, my 2 yr old dd is HIGHLY allergic to sauerkraut. She gets a severe diaper rash that doesn't go away for days, and she cries about it. Before I knew about allergies, I used to let her eat lots of it, and I think that contributed greatly to her leaky gut. I have given her other lacto fermented foods (beets, carrots and ginger, and pickles) and she is fine. I couldn't even eat it while breast feeding her.

Now when she was weaned I was so happy that I could eat sauerkraut.

I just had my baby Ds (h is 2 weeks old) and he had an allergic reaction just like my dd when I ate the ginger carrots. I tested him for the sauerkraut and he is allergic to that too. What is with my kids? Or should I ask the opposite question- what is up with these ferments?

And a note, my dd is fine with cooked cabbage, and ds is fine with ginger plain or carrots.
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#15 of 24 Old 08-11-2009, 02:58 PM
 
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bluebirdmama, if it's multiple ferments, maybe amines are an issue? They're a food chemical, they're quite high in fermented foods (also broth, moreso in the long-simmered broth than short simmers). If you think it is amines, do a search in the Allergies forum, amines are excreted by the body in a specific way, and y'all could either be low in some of these nutrients, or more likely for some reason, you've built up a lot of things that are detoxified by the same pathways, and so you need a lot more of those nutrients than most folks until you catch-up.
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#16 of 24 Old 08-14-2009, 05:55 PM
 
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Some info on goitrogens and the mechanism of action here:
http://iodine4health.com/special/goi...goitrogens.htm

Bluebirdmama1,

This happens to my DS too. He just cannot do ferments. I also think maybe it's because they are so acidic too. He eats well cooked cabbage (with lots of butter and salt, yum) just fine. I cook 30 min. to reduce 90% of goitrogens (Masterjohn).
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#17 of 24 Old 08-14-2009, 06:27 PM
 
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my dad always heated up the sauerkraut (uh, and added bacon )... that's not normal to eat it hot?

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#18 of 24 Old 08-14-2009, 07:45 PM
 
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From what I've learned, fermented crucifers may actually be MORE goitrogenic. As in soy, some of the goitrogenic compounds are bound in carbohydrates and as fermentation breaks down carbohydrates the goitrogens are more easily absorbed. If you're concerned about goitrogens and you're thyroid, there's plenty of other fermented vegetables you can eat and you can simply lightly cook your crucifers.

I blog traditional foods and Weston A Price at Nourished Kitchen. See my healthy recipes.
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#19 of 24 Old 08-14-2009, 08:07 PM
 
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Would the salt in the fermented kraut help offset the issue? I'm thinking sauerkraut = cabbage + salt + water, and if you use real sea salt, you're getting a pretty hefty dose of a good trace source of iodine, the place iodine is actually supposed to come from in our diets. I think that would have been the case for Europeans, too, no? Good old Mediterranean sea salt?

Maybe it has enough iodine to offset the issue for folks w/o health issues, but so many of us today have already developed thyroid issues prior to starting TF eating, so they have to be cautious about it until restoring balance to the thyroid ... ?
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#20 of 24 Old 08-14-2009, 08:09 PM
 
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Snowbunny, will heating the sauerkraut make a difference or do you mean just eat cabbage in an unfermented, but cooked way?

(love your blog, by the way)

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#21 of 24 Old 08-15-2009, 11:37 AM
 
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I think the key might be the portion size. No known thyroid issues here, but I think (esp. for women) it is such a huge issue in this country (and similar countries) that I eat with a mind toward goitrogens. We eat a fermented cabbage/beet/carrot mix every night with dinner--about 3-4 tablespoons each.

We try to get our probiotics from a variety of sources: fermented veggies, yogurt, kefir, pickles, raw cheese (and milk to a degree), kombucha, and a supplement. Looking into making fermented "sodas" too.

I'd be a bit concerned about a daily "bowlful" of cabbage/crucifer in any form.
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#22 of 24 Old 08-15-2009, 03:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NatrlCatholicMama View Post
Would the salt in the fermented kraut help offset the issue? I'm thinking sauerkraut = cabbage + salt + water, and if you use real sea salt, you're getting a pretty hefty dose of a good trace source of iodine, the place iodine is actually supposed to come from in our diets. I think that would have been the case for Europeans, too, no? Good old Mediterranean sea salt?

Maybe it has enough iodine to offset the issue for folks w/o health issues, but so many of us today have already developed thyroid issues prior to starting TF eating, so they have to be cautious about it until restoring balance to the thyroid ... ?
There's really not much iodine in sea salt, even the best which is Celtic Sea Salt. Iodine can also be in the soil and therefore in foods/animals raised in a holistic manner, so that is why I think traditional people succeeded. Also seafoods were big, I remember Price saying many inland groups went out of their way to get seafood.

But yes, I think it's a big difference to talk about modern people who may have already damaged their thyroid and iodine stores (in thyroid and other organs such as breasts and ovaries) compared to a traditional person who ate the right way and weren't exposed to artificial goitrogens (such as mercury, perchlorate, processed soy, pesticides, chlorine and bromides) as we are.

See "THE Iodine Thread" for more
http://www.mothering.com/discussions....php?t=1091794
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#23 of 24 Old 08-15-2009, 05:57 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
Also, I found this: http://renegadehealth.com/blog/the-r...n-the-thyroid/ but was unable to watch it all as my comp. crashed in the middle of it and won't load it again...I'm interested in hearing what it says...(and learning more about the source!)
So, I watched this, and it basically says that IF you are getting enough iodine, THEN you can eat raw, cruciferous veggies w/out an issue. (That raw, cruciferous veggies are only harmful to those who are iodine deficient...which may be a lot of us if you check out THE Iodine thread JaneS mentioned!)

He recommends checking your thyroid and iodine levels about this if you are worried about it, and upping the amount of iodine in your diet/supps if you eat cruciferous veggies raw. (Still unsure if it's a reliable source, but I found it interesting and will continue to look into this!)

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#24 of 24 Old 08-15-2009, 07:20 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
So, I watched this, and it basically says that IF you are getting enough iodine, THEN you can eat raw, cruciferous veggies w/out an issue. (That raw, cruciferous veggies are only harmful to those who are iodine deficient...which may be a lot of us if you check out THE Iodine thread JaneS mentioned!)

He recommends checking your thyroid and iodine levels about this if you are worried about it, and upping the amount of iodine in your diet/supps if you eat cruciferous veggies raw. (Still unsure if it's a reliable source, but I found it interesting and will continue to look into this!)
I may believe this since it sounds so convincing. I do put raw broccoli in my salads when I can get it local and perhaps it isn't a problem because I out loads of dulse on my salads. I feel pretty good, and the last time I was at a naturopath, I was told my thyroid was fine.
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