Posted by John Hartman on 4/1/2019 to News
When I was a child, I had relatives in Indiana. (I still do, as it happens. Hey, folks.) A significant number of these aunts, uncles, and cousins were of German ancestry, and some of them never really got a handle on the English language. They also tended to be deeply religious, at least to the point of tempering their language in front of young children. Which, I believe, is where I first heard the phrase, "Sauerkraut Juice." One or another of my uncles, experiencing a typical minor Hoosier setback such as having his tool shed carried away by the latest in a near-constant string of summer tornadoes, might stand out on the back porch and stare balefully at the twisted wreckage of his former building. He would then spit. Then he would take a deep breath, only to have my grandmother, a formidable woman, catch his eye and then cast a meaningful look at the gathered youngsters.
His shoulders would slump, ever so slightly.
"Aw... sauerkraut juice," he would say, and amble off, leaving us kids to learn our swear words by other, more practical methods.
So I heard the phrase once in a while as a kid, but never in the context of a beverage. In fact, growing up in my German-Scots household, when we were the term mentioned, it was usually in the context of, "Empty out that kraut jar; there's nothing in it but sauerkraut juice now."
It turns out that we were pouring liquid gold down the kitchen drain this entire time.
It's well known that pickled vegetables, especially pickled cabbage, are not only tasty, but healthy as well. Many cultures in Europe enjoy some form of sauerkraut; the Koreans have their famous kimchi; and many African cultures enjoy pickled peppers in their cuisine. For as long as people have needed to preserve food, pickling has been a popular option, especially once it was realized that herbs and spices could be added to the pickling mix. (It has not been empirically tested, but I'm sure I could consume a significant percentage of my own body weight in kimchi.)
It also turns out, however, that the juice from that process might have some real beneficial properties. Multiple studies referenced by Livestrong posit the many good things sauerkraut juice has to offer:
- Sauerkraut juice is loaded with probiotics as a result of the normal fermentation process, including natural lactic acid. Natural lactic acid acts as a sort of security officer for your digestive system, promoting the growth of good bacteria and limiting the bad. If you're having digestive issues, these bacteria also help prevent constipation.
- Also: packed full of potassium, about 12% of your USDA requirement. You need potassium to help keep your blood pressure down and also to prevent kidney stones. You don't want those.
- Plus, everyone's favorite antioxidant, vitamin C! One cup of sauerkraut juice gives you 58% of your daily requirement.
- Finally, Iron. We all need it, and sauerkraut juice has it; 19% of your daily requirement in a one-cup serving. Helps your blood cells carry oxygen, which, as you know, we all need to live.
"Wow," I pretend to hear you say, but I can't, because this is just words on a screen, "If only there were some way I could get my hands on some of this groovy stuff."
I have the most astonishing news to report.
It just so happens that IdealMall.com carries this whizbang beverage, and we're thrilled to share some with you. It only has three ingredients, and it's all natural.
Drink up, and maybe together we can turn "Sauerkraut Juice!" from a minced oath into a healthy toast.