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Fermented Foods in Aging and Longevity [Book Chapter]

Fermented foods have been in the human diet for thousands of years because of their nutritive, preservative, and organoleptic properties. Recently, fermented foods gained more attention among people due to the functional microbes, which possess antioxidant, antimicrobial, probiotics, peptide production properties etc., thereby modulating specific actions in the human body related to healthy aging and longevity. Growing evidence suggests that fermented foods change the metabolic activities in the gut, acquire new characteristics, and increase benefit in age-associated changes. Gut microbiota and the brain maintain bidirectional communication and modulate behavior via the “microbiota-gut-brain axis” in the human body. A series of relevant benefits associated with fermented foods in healthy aging and longevity have been reported that includes preventing allergic reactions, gastrointestinal disorders, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity, improving metabolic function and neuroendocrine effects, etc. Therefore, the ultimate way for longevity may be obtained by healthy lifestyle habits that comprise a healthy diet inclusive of various fermented foods. This chapter focuses on reviews and critical analysis of past, current, and future research of fermented foods in aging and longevity.