Fermented vegetables are lactose-free, but some caution is advised for histamine intolerance: The longer fermented vegetables are stored, the more histamines they contain. “However, in histamine intolerance, it is especially important to sanitise the gut and support the body’s own microbiome. Thus, in mild cases of histamine intolerance, one should also regularly consume small amounts of fermented vegetables – starting with one teaspoon per day,” advises Dr Sonja Schottkowsky, Mayr doctor at Park Igls and also phytotherapist. She is an expert in the field of medicinal herbs and plants and their effects.
When preparing kimchi – the Korean version of sauerkraut – fish sauce is added, which has a very high histamine content. This can also be omitted, which leads to lower histamine content and improves tolerance.
“If you want to try fermenting yourself, start with white, red or Chinese cabbage or carrots,” the Mayr doctor recommends. “And don’t be afraid to make mistakes! If you work cleanly, deficient fermentations rarely occur with the vegetables mentioned, because the absence of oxygen means that problematic germs can hardly multiply.” Should mould nevertheless form during the fermentation process, the contents of the jar must be disposed of. In the case of creamy yeast, on the other hand, which can be visually distinguished from mould, the top layer is simply skimmed off. You can recognise cream yeast by its very fine, velvety surface and its white colour throughout.