Throughout history, humans have always strived to live longer and better. And with science rapidly evolving, it seems to be working.

The Global AgeWatch Index of 2015 states that we live in an ageing world. In 2015, there were an estimated 901 million people over the age of 60. By 2050, this is expected to more than double, at 2092 million.

So, what’s the secret? While there are many components that may have an impact on our life expectancy, science suggests there may be one ingredient that plays an active role - fermented foods.

Forging the way with fermented foods

One of the main benefits of probiotic foods can be the gut healing properties that the good bacteria brings. This helps immune systems to stay healthy - something that we need more of as we get older, it seems!

It’s observed that as we age, there is less and less microbe activity in our gut. This is can be why many consider older people to have weaker immune and digestive systems.

While it’s not guaranteed this will happen to you when you reach your golden years, there may be some preventative measures to postpone irritable bowel symptoms.

Perhaps parents should say "eat your probiotics" instead of "eat your greens"!    (gorgeous photo thanks to  Leno )

Perhaps parents should say "eat your probiotics" instead of "eat your greens"!

(gorgeous photo thanks to Leno)

There are several studies where teams of researchers investigated the results of good bacteria on worms. Two studies in particular (referenced below) found significant lifespan increases in the worms that were exposed to a probiotic bacterium called Bacillus subtilis.

Experts from the National University of Rosario explain that they conducted their testings on worms because “the ageing regulatory pathways of this worm used as an animal model have been conserved along the evolution, and they are basically the same as the human ones”.

Worming our way into a longer life

There also needs to be more studies to find a correlation between longevity and probiotics directly, but currently, we only have the ageing worms to aid in continuing research.

While there is no direct proof yet that probiotics can definitely extend our lifespan, you can see the many benefits of including fermented foods into our everyday diet.

At the end of the day, if you do want to live a life with healthy gut flora, fermented foods could potentially be one of the best ways to help.