Sauerkraut Test Divulges Shocking Probiotic Count

It was recently reported that sauerkraut topped the charts of probiotics, surpassing that of over-the -counter probiotics purchased.

Dr. Mercola sent his sauerkraut off to a lab and reported the findings of probiotics saying, “We had it analyzed. We found in a 4-6 ounce serving of the fermented vegetables there were literally ten trillion bacteria.” That means 2 ounces of home fermented sauerkraut had more probiotics than a bottle of 100 count probiotic capsules. Translated this means one 16 ounce of sauerkraut is equal to 8 bottles of probiotics.

He says there’s two ways a lab can analyze the microbial presence in the sauerkraut,”One is to measure the quantity of bacteria growing and then the more expensive process is to speciate the different types of bacteria. We’re in the process of doing that now.”

In The Gluten Summit, 2013, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, told Dr. Tom O’Bryan, ““With every mouthful of sauerkraut you’re consuming billions of beneficial microbes which will be killing the pathogens in your gut driving them out and replenishing the beneficial flora in your digestive tract.”

The probiotic count of store-bought, shelf stable sauerkraut does not compare to home-brewed sauerkraut. Click here to learn how to make your own. Click here to learn how to make sauerkraut at home and here to learn how to make kraut juice, a more gentle on the stomach probiotic for those with leaky gut. People who do have unbalanced gut flora with an overpopulation of bad gut bacteria pathogens experience die-off symptoms such as diarrhea, rash, cold-like symptoms, flu-like symptoms, etc. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride recommends starting with one teaspoon and looking for die-off symptoms then gradually increasing the amount daily or weekly depending on what your body can handle. To read more click here. To see another test on mice with sauerkraut click here.

Die off symptoms are accompanied with inflammation. Healing and inflammation do not go hand in hand. It is important to keep inflammation down so healing can take place therefore it is important to keep the amount of die off down to just below a noticeable state.

Cabbage is high in anti-inflammatory properties, vitamins A and C. Cabbage also reduces lipids in the bloodstream. When cabbage is fermented into sauerkraut the fermentation process opens up the cell walls accessing a higher ratio of vitamins. It has been said that sauerkraut has 200 times more vitamin C than the head of cabbage before fermentation.

The African Journal of Science and Research (AJSR) said, “Healthy colons of humans contain some beneficial bacteria which feed on digestive wastes, thereby producing lactic acid. Without these beneficial bacteria, the digestive tracts become a thriving zone for DSC04298pathogenic bacteria and yeasts, resulting in candidiasis. However, it is suggested that the consumption of lacto-fermented sauerkraut could help re-establish lactobacilli.”

Bacteria in your body outnumber your cells by about 10 to 1.

Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, author GAPS (affiliate link) says 90% of our body is made up of microbes.

In 1807 French psychiatrist Phillipe Pinel said, “The primary seat of insanity generally is in the region of the DSC04295stomach and intestines.” Pinel is known as the father of modern psychiatry and came to this quote after working with mental patients for many years.

Sauerkraut is high in tyrosine, an amino acid that affects many aspects of the body including blood pressure regulation and dopamine. To learn how to make your own sauerkraut in three easy steps click here.

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, CGP, D.PSc. who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. She works as a Certified GAPS Practitioner who sees clients in her office, Skype and phone. She has been published in Wise Traditions, spoken at two Weston A. Price Conferences, Certified GAPS Practitioner Trainings, has been on many radio shows, television shows and writes for Nourishing Plot. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia, through food, she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. She is a Chapter Leader for The Weston A. Price Foundation. [email protected]

“GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The right of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Patent and Designs Act 1988.

Sauerkrat contains large amounts of tyramine.  Tyramine is neurotransmitter releasing agent.  In other words, it’s a chemical that induces the release of feel good brain chemicals.  This includes our friend, dopamine! – See more at:


Sauerkrat contains large amounts of tyramine.  Tyramine is neurotransmitter releasing agent.  In other words, it’s a chemical that induces the release of feel good brain chemicals.  This includes our friend, dopamine! – See more at:

Sauerkrat contains large amounts of tyramine.  Tyramine is neurotransmitter releasing agent.  In other words, it’s a chemical that induces the release of feel good brain chemicals.  This includes our friend, dopamine! – See more at:



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  1. What kind of inflammation can a child experience? My son had a rash appear and flu and diahrrea symptoms after we eliminated dairy and gluten 3 weeks earlier. Also doing feingold too :-). This was such a great read!

  2. Great article, and I especially love this statement: “Die off symptoms are accompanied with inflammation. Healing and inflammation do not go hand in hand.” I totally agree. Thanks for helping to spread the word that a “healing crisis” isn’t necessary, or even beneficial, to healing.

    • thank you josie! i completely remember fixing that! thanks for catching my mistake – i must not have saved it properly. so much to learn.

  3. I remember Dr Mercola’s talk and it was the homemade sauerkraut made with a starter culture packet that had these high numbers. The homemade with just salt/whey did not have as high of numbers.

    • the talk where dr. mercola said this is linked on the article. it was interview with sandor katz, the godfather of fermentation. in the interview sandor and dr. mercola discussed using starter cultures with no salt. sandor said his findings and papers showed more strains with the salt and natural enzymes from the vegetables vs the isolated strains from the starter culture. sandor explained he used a starter culture twice, out of thousands of brews, because the only difference it made was it lowered the ph faster at the beginning but made no difference in the end. in the interview dr. mercola explained he would try it with his Himalayan salt form there on. can you please link the interview where dr. mercola says otherwise. i would love to see it!

      • I don’t think there is a link. It is a purchased conference talk from the WAPF conference last year in Atlanta. 2013. Do you have the talks? I do have them and can point you to it, but not publicly here. How can I contact you more privately? This would be great to figure out because I stopped doing my salt ferment after that talk and started using the culture. I’d like to find out what is best. The talk I heard was around November 11th, 2013. I wonder if the Sandor interview was before or after that date?

        • I will stay tuned here for an update. I am very interested as well because I plan to make homemade sauerkraut.

    • Different bacterias dominate in population depending on the pH at the time. Introducing bacteria early on in the piece may not be a good idea. It ‘s not be the ideal pH for what you’re trying to introduce, therefore failing to flourish. Each veg has its own native microflora that can grown in a crock environment, which changes as the pH changes.

  4. It sounds so very interesting and easy to make. I have high blood pressure and asthma my entire life, now maybe COPD and literally can barely breath with sinusitis. will this help my problems and …… how does store bought compare. I have some, but haven’t cabbage and home bound so I want to go try some right now, but it probably has preservatives in it and other bad stuff. Could sinusitis and lungs be healed? I also have a hernia, swallow problem, food gets stuck and can NEVER sleep , until I wear out and then get rested a couple days and back to insomnia. I hope this stuff words on some of my problems. ;o))

    • Hi Brenda. I’ve been suffering from asthma for approx. 30 years and was getting really really bad 2 years ago. My doctor had me tested for COPD and pulmonary fibrosis with no definite prognosis. Finally my doctor told me to take kéfir to try to boost my immune system. After 5 weeks of taking it with no improvement, I developed a huge fever for a day. From then on, I started improving a little bit every day up to the point where I could run up a flight of stairs without coughing. My life changed completely. I was also able to reduce my medications considerably. Kéfir is a probiotic (5 billions bacterias per tablespoon) so yes ! probiotics are good for you. I never tried sauerkraut but I’m sure it would do the job !!!

    • Regarding your hernia, which sounds like it may be a hiatal hernia: my mother suffered from that for years and used Prilosec daily for heartburn. Near the end of her life she started taking magnesium citrate at my request for something else, and after a few weeks told me that she hadn’t had to take Prilosec recently because she hadn’t needed it. I had read that magnesium is good for spasms (including asthma) and nervous system disorders, but did a little further research and found some discussions online about magnesium being a remedy for valve/sphincter disorders. In a related vein, I am prone to leaky bladder but noticed that the problem vanished during a recent trip; I figured out that I had taken my vitamins/minerals religiously during that trip. I tried to isolate which supplement did the trick and am fairly sure it was the magnesium. If you try it, let us know how it works out. Magnesium is supposed to be good for insomnia as well, I hear.

      • i agree – magnesium is amazing and from what i understand 90% of america is low. i take magnesium malate every day, more than is recommended and it makes a large difference. i wonder is taking magnesium citrate along with malate is more beneficial. hmmmm…. more research to be done for sure. although i was taking both together until just last week so now i’m not sure. hopefully someone more intelligent on this will pipe up.

    • Brenda, beets are incredible for the lungs, eyes, and preventing and even treating cancer. Athletes are now drinking beet juice because it helps them get more oxygen with every breath. It increases their endurance. I have no time for dealing with fresh beets, so I just buy them canned, rinse them in a colander to get the salt off, and put them in a salad. Or by themselves with red wine vinegar and a dash of cloves. I started eating them for their cancer benefit, but quickly noticed their effect on diminishing my eye floaters.

    • Hi Brenda, the autoimmune paleo diet and daily magnesium sulfate (epsom salt) baths help me with chronic inflammation, gastric reflux, and insomnia. If you try it, I recommend being prepared with a lot of snacks and meals.

    • linked. it says “click here to learn how to make…” click on the blue underlined part that says click here

  5. Great article. Thank you for what you are doing with this blog!

    Quick typo alert – “He says there’s two ways a lav can analyze the microbial presence in the sauerkraut” It had me chuckling, though!!

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  9. I’d take this more seriously if you weren’t quoting that quack Joe Mercola.
    If you really want to help folks you should head over to Science Based Medicine – Here’s a good article that addresses Food Fears as promoted by the likes of Mercola, Mike Adams and the “Food Babe”.

    • What is the source of all your venim? I found absolutely no mention of any of your 3 mentioned ‘so called quacks’. Such a duffer.

  10. Great article, one near and dear to our hearts here at Sonoma Brinery. I agree that the shelf stable products do not offer benefits that raw sauerkraut does. If you don’t have time to make your own, check you local stores in the refrigerated sections, like the product we make here, there is raw sauerkraut available, inexpensively, that is only done with salt, water and mother nature. Thank you for sharing this great information. Its great in scrambled eggs, on tacos, in mac and cheese, hundreds of ways to eat it besides right out of the package or on a hot dog! 🙂

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  13. After a 9 month long series of oral surgeries w. anti-biotics, I began buying Bubbies Sauerkraut, and then a Kimchi, both w. live cultures, non-pasteurized. But the prices, not cheap, so I began making my own kraut, then kimchi. So much happier now, as are friends who are now enjoying it and making their own as well.
    I have gone back to using just salt, no starter. No problem.
    Just do it! Whether you are using Food As Medicine, or just want a tasty, nutritious condiment to go with your meals, kraut and kimchi offer what you need.

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