As a staple food in the human diet, bread digestibility is a topic of marked interest. Several scientific publications have reported over the years that baked goods made with lactic ferments are characterized by better performance, improved digestibility and various nutritional benefits.
Rizzello, C.G.; Portincasa, P.; Montemurro, M.; Di Palo, D.M.; Lorusso, M.P.; De Angelis, M.; Bonfrate, L.; Genot, B.; Gobbetti, M. Sourdough Fermented Breads are More Digestible than Those Started with Baker’s Yeast Alone: An In Vivo Challenge Dissecting Distinct Gastrointestinal Responses. Nutrients 2019, 11, 2954.
This is a clinical study of 35 patients who were given bread made with Saccharomyces yeast alone (brewer's yeast bread) and sourdough breads made with L. Plantarum, L. Rossiae and S. Cerevisiae (sourdough breads). The study found:
Differences in carbohydrate digestibility and absorption after ingestion of these two different types of breads;
Higher digestibility of breads made with lactic ferments (sourdough breads) than breads made with brewer's yeast alone.
Anna Reale, Luigia Di Stasio, Tiziana Di Renzo, Salvatore De Caro, Pasquale Ferranti, Gianluca Picariello, Francesco Addeo, Gianfranco Mamone, Bacteria do it better! Proteomics suggests the molecular basis for improved digestibility of sourdough products,Food Chemistry, Volume 359, 2021, 129955, ISSN 0308-8146.
The results of this work suggest the following conclusions:
despite minor effects on gluten proteins, lactic ferments-induced fermentation degrades specific proteins (such as β-amylase, serpins, ATI and oleosin) thus directly or indirectly improving the digestibility of wheat-derived foods.
Kashika Arora, Hana Ameur, Andrea Polo, Raffaella Di Cagno, Carlo Giuseppe Rizzello, Marco Gobbetti, Thirty years of knowledge on sourdough fermentation: A systematic review, Trends in Food Science & Technology, Volume 108, 2021, Pages 71-83, ISSN 0924-2244.
This review considers various aspects, including nutritional ones, on which sourdough and its lactic ferments impact. The most recent literature has shown that sourdough fermentation:
Primarily increases the bioavailability of minerals
Allows products to be enriched with dietary fiber
Reduces the glycemic index
Improves protein digestibility
Decreases the content of anti-nutritional factors
Detailed on pg.78 and pg.80 are a series of nutritional effects of sourdough on the baked goods in which it is used.