Life Giving Foods vs. Life Robbing Foods!

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? You might be asking how I distinguish between life giving foods and life robbing foods.

This past week I had the great pleasure to listen to a very wise woman share her plight into traditional eating and the reason was her sick young daughter.

You see, most mothers (and fathers) become fierce momma or papa bears when our young are sick or ill, don’t we?

We want to find out what exactly is wrong and then do everything in our power to make them better.

I know I’ve done this over the years with my own daughters and now with my grandchildren. When they don’t feel well, we’re digging and fixing!

If you’re shopping for and consuming prepackaged and commercialized food products from your local grocery, you are consuming life robbing foods.

There is a list of 10 major life robbing foods that I’d like to share that you should NEVER eat and then I’ll share the list of life giving foods.

Foods you should NEVER EVER eat….

1. GMO Foods

(Corn, Soy, Sugar, Aspartame, Papaya, Canola Oil, Cotton Oil, Commercial Dairy, Zucchini, Yellow Squash)

2. Processed Meats

(Lunch meats, hotdogs, sausages, bacon)

3. Microwave Popcorn

4. Soft Drinks

5. Diet Beverages

6. Refined White Flours

7. Refined Sugars

8. Conventional “Dirty” Produce (see EWG’s Dirty Dozen listing here)

9. Farmed Salmon

10. Hydrogenated Oils (canola, shortening, vegetable oils)

(Most baked goods use these oils)

Whew….that’s a list isn’t it?

Now would you like the list of foods that are living giving and good for you? It’s my pleasure to present them!

1. Bone Broths

2. Raw Milk

3. Yogurt

4. Kefir

5. Grass-fed Beef, Pork, Lamb

6. Pastured poultry (chicken, turkey)

7. Sourdough Bread

8. Pastured Eggs

9. Fresh fruits and veggies (preferably organic)

10. Soaked grains, nuts, seeds, beans

11. Fermented veggies, fruits and teas

Yum!!! This is the food items that I adore! When foods are properly grown, prepared and eaten, they give life and they taste absolutely delicious!

Often times in conversations, it comes about that “healthy” doesn’t taste good. Well, have I got news for you. When you eat the “life giving” foods I outlined above, your whole body sings, including your mouth!

Every cell is awakened and having a party and rejoicing! One of my clients recently shared how she’s feeling just after two weeks of consuming Kombucha (fermented tea) and Bone broths. The results are amazing and she’s seeing the proof.

Guess what else is amazing? She’s telling everyone that will listen. Why? Because when you’ve struggled with something like IBS for so long and you don’t have control over what your body does, and all of a sudden you are given a glimpse of normal and vibrant living, you feel fabulous, you look fabulous, people notice and you sing!

Isn’t it time to take back your health and your life? Do you feel doomed to just suffer through? Or perhaps you’ve tried so many things and nothing seems to work.

It really isn’t your fault. You just need a fresh start, some sound guidance, a good roadmap to follow to your destination, which is great health, energy, sound sleep, vibrant vitality and the feelings of being youthful and sexy again.

I really don’t believe we were put on this planet to suffer. We are created of a higher power and image and that image isn’t one of a broken down body that suffers needlessly.

What has been your biggest takeaway from the “Life Robbing” and “Life Giving” foods list? Share your comments below.

To Your Health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Are you ready for your personal roadmap to health and vibrancy? Click here to talk and make a plan! Isn’t it time to take your life back?

What’s a Belly to do?

Ferments

On Tuesday night, my sister-in-law, Kathy and I did our Fermentation presentation and Demo class in front of a room full of novices and veterans alike.

Wow, what an awesome experience. We showcased this class last year for a large group and had much success and were graciously invited to teach this year to a new group of amazing folks.

Something we noticed is that the room had quite a few experienced fermenters and they had some great comments and questions, which we love.

The base or foundation of the class is to look at the “science” behind fermentation, which is Kathy’s forte, as she’s a Science teacher by day and a great presenter by night J. She also shared her plight with Diabetes and the amazing healing journey that has unfolded over the last year or so! Yes, eating and drinking fermented foods can help with Diabetes…hmmm! Ask me how!

By incorporating the why and how, we feel it helps us truly understand why bacteria is good for us and to learn that consuming “fermented” foods isn’t bad for us or going to “kill” us, as many would have you believe.

One of the points of discussion was on fermenting in the typical fashion, which is to properly prepare and then allow to sit and ferment for several days and then some would have you can or process with heat to store.

There were those in the room who have family members that practice this method. If this is you, can I share that if you are fermenting for the benefits of healthy probiotics, bacteria and enzymes, when you heat it after the fermenting period in a hot water bath or pressure cooker, you now have a very dead food?

Why is this important to distinguish? The art of fermentation is for several reasons, namely to take food sources in their raw state, allow them to lacto-ferment and they become powerhouse foods. They are now inoculated with more vitamins and minerals than their original state.

They also are now loaded with probiotics to help our gut system, which plays the role of being 75-80% of our immune system health and it puts in good healthy bacteria to populate all that which is killed throughout our normal living.

Implanting good bacteria also helps to offset the bad guys running around too. Because our society is so heavily abused by antibiotic use, antibacterial soaps, and chlorinated water, there is no distinction between good and bad bacteria, they all get wiped out.

What most don’t understand is that we have to either put in a good probiotic or eat good fermented foods daily. Not occasionally, but daily.

Our bodies are under constant attack by our environment, our foods, our toxic Ag products and acres and even our homes. Do you realize that the beloved cleaning products you bring in to “scrub away” the grime; make the inside of your home more caustic than the outside, in many cases? Another topic for another day!

If you’re interested in diving into the world of fermentation deeper, there are many great sources, including a previous article I wrote here.

Fermentation is a godsend in my family’s home. There are at least 5 jars of different ferments as well as Kombucha at any given time. You will also find sourdough bread too!

Why? Pure health benefits….plus they taste wonderful! It’s truly a party in your mouth and your gut (belly).

If you need to heal your body, fermented foods will be a great addition. We talked about introducing these foods to young children, as the sooner you do, the easier it will be.

Have you noticed how young our children and grandchildren that are being diagnosed with horrendous illness and diseases? Is it a fluke? I don’t think so. We have to wake up and take charge of our health or you won’t be enjoying good health.

Got questions, ask away in the comments section below. What are your favorite fermented foods?

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Do you need a solid plan to take back your health? One that provides instruction, accountability, celebration, praise, goals and positive action? Look no further. Click here and let’s talk!

 

Raw Milk…It does a body good!

Raw Milk facts

Have you ever considered drinking raw milk? If you are honest, I bet one of your first thoughts is…whew…that’s gross!

I remember conjuring up such thoughts and more. I don’t know exactly why I thought this, but I couldn’t fathom drinking milk directly from the cow, I mean I was always taught that it had to be cooked and cleaned first, right?

Boy, have I come along way. For the last year and a half, I’ve consumed no other milk other than raw milk. I also make fermented foods from raw milk, things like yogurt, kefir, soft cheeses, cottage cheese and the like.

I can’t begin to tell you how much better tasting it is, how fresh it is AND the health benefits are superior to anything pasteurized, contrary to what you’ve been told or the warnings you’ve had flashed to you. I’

Now, let me also say, not all raw is deemed equal. If you have access to receiving “raw” milk from a commercial dairy, don’t do it. Why? The condition under which it is produced is key and the way the animals are raised.

The ideal raw milk is taken straight from animals fed only fresh, organic, green grass, and then the milk is rapidly cooled to somewhere around 36-38 degrees and then bottled. There is no processing, just filtration and cooling.

Diet is a major factor in the quality of raw milk. Cows weren’t meant to be fed grains and starches and this changes the acidity of the cow’s stomach environment and changes fat and nutritional values in the milk. They lack the self-protective properties that occur when cows are grass-fed. Also milk fed grains and starches, has the capability to be more contaminated.

There is a whole other topic of what’s injected into the cow, as well as being fed to increase the milk production. Many of these soy based products, mimic estrogen in humans, hence the higher hormone issues in this country as well.

I will link several resources at the bottom of this article, for those that would like further, in depth research. For the sake of this article, I really just wanted to give an overview and open it up the comments for further review and questions.

Clean raw milk from pastured cows is a complete and properly balanced food. If you had to, you could live on it exclusively. The ingredients that make it such a powerhouse are:

  • Proteins (Cow’s milk has 8 essential amino acids)
  • Carbohydrates (Lactose or milk sugar, is the primary)
  • Fats (approximately 2/3 of the fat in milk is saturated, which play a number of key roles in our bodies)
  • CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) is abundant in milk from grass-fed cows
  • Vitamins (water and fat soluble) – nothing needs to be added to raw milk, it’s already there and ready to be used by our bodies
  • Minerals (ranging from calcium and phosphorus on down to trace minerals)
  • Enzymes (there are 60+ known and the biggest help I think they play is relieving the burden from our system – as they help break down foods
  • Cholesterol (a protective/repair substance) Contrary to what you’ve been told, our bodies produce it and need it for a healthy life
  • Beneficial Bacteria (with high levels of lactic acid, numerous enzymes and increased vitamin content, fermented dairy products, think yogurt and kefir, add even more health benefits

Raw milk is the best thing you can give your children, next to lactating of course. Have you noticed the rise in Asthma, allergies, skin disorders, etc.? There are a number of studies linking the consumption of pasteurized milk to these.

Pasteurization kills all the bacteria in the milk by heating it. As I mentioned earlier, this is necessary because of their living conditions, the cleanliness of the cows, what they are fed, etc. Then vitamins have to be added back in.

Milk…it does a body good! I’m sure you’ve all heard that saying. I would add the word “Raw” to that statement. Raw Milk….It does a body Good! It’s the only milk that does a body good! Whether it’s from goats or cows, make sure it’s grass-fed and from a trusted source.

As I mentioned earlier, I’ll link several resources for you who want and desire more, as you ultimately have to make the right choice and decisions for your family.

I can’t say enough for the benefits my family has experienced as a result of making the change and I will never go back, even if that means having a cow of my own.

Interested in learning more and/or obtaining raw milk…here’s an excellent resource, www.realmilk.com

There is much controversy over this issue and the best advice I can give, is do the research, talk to trusted sources and make an informed decision.

What questions arise from this blog? Do you consume raw milk or are you afraid and have questions? This is the place to share those questions and/or concerns, post below.

As I’ve said a few times, this article isn’t intended to be all inclusive, as this topic is very in-depth and there are some strong political views at hand as well. All I can do is open the door, let you dive in and see where it takes you.

The choice is yours….here to lasting good health!

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Here are a couple of great resources, and these aren’t all inclusive…just trusted sites.

www.realmilk.com

www.westonaprice.org

www.raw-milk-facts.com

http://empoweredsustenance.com/raw-milk-is-special/

Click here if you’d like to schedule some time with me to see how we can take this conversation further into a plan of lasting health for you and your family. Let’s Talk!

 

Benefits of consuming kefir regularly

Kefir

Welcome to the world of delicious and probiotic rich kefir. Did you know that kefir has over 50 strands of probiotics/bacteria in it?

Kefir is easily digested, it cleanses the intestines, provides beneficial bacteria and yeast, vitamins and minerals, and complete is a complete protein. Because kefir is such a balanced and nourishing food, it plays important roles in a healthy immune system and has been used to help patients suffering from AIDS, chronic fatigue syndrome, herpes, and cancer. Its calming effect on the nervous system has benefited many who suffer from sleep disorders, depression, and ADHD.

The regular use of kefir can help relieve all intestinal disorders, promote healthy bowel movements, reduce flatulence and create a healthier digestive system. In addition, its cleansing effect on the whole body helps to establish a balanced inner ecosystem for optimum health and longevity. Helps provide a healthy gut flora.

Kefir can also help eliminate unhealthy food cravings because it makes the body more balanced and nourished. Its excellent nutritional content offers healing and health-maintenance benefits to people in every type of health condition.

For the lactose intolerant, kefir’s abundance of beneficial yeast and bacteria provide lactase, an enzyme which consumes most of the lactose left after the culturing process.

Kefir can be made from any type of milk, cow, goat or sheep, coconut, rice or soy. Although it is slightly mucous forming, the mucous has a “clean” quality to it that creates ideal conditions in the digestive tract for the population of friendly bacteria.

In addition to beneficial bacteria and yeast, kefir contains minerals and essential amino acids that help the body with healing and maintenance functions. The complete proteins in kefir are partially digested and therefore more easily utilized by the body. Tryptophan, one of the essential amino acids abundant in kefir, is well known for its relaxing effect on the nervous system. Because kefir also offers an abundance of calcium and magnesium, which are also important minerals for a healthy nervous system, as well as hormonal system, kefir in the diet can have a particularly profound calming effect on the nerves.

Kefir’s ample supply of phosphorus, the second most abundant mineral in our bodies, helps utilize carbohydrates, fats, and proteins for cell growth, maintenance and energy.

Kefir is rich in Vitamin B12, B1, and Vitamin K. It is an excellent source of biotin, a B vitamin which aids the body’s assimilation of other B Vitamins, such as folic acid, pantothenic acid, and B12. The numerous benefits of maintaining adequate B vitamin intake range from regulation of the kidneys, liver and nervous system to helping relieve skin disorders, boost energy and promote longevity.

I often get asked if yogurt and kefir is the same thing. The difference between the two is this…they are both fermented milk products …but they contain different types of beneficial bacteria. Yogurt contains transient beneficial bacteria that keep the digestive system clean and provide food for the friendly bacteria that reside there. But kefir can actually colonize the intestinal tract, a feat that yogurt cannot match.

Kefir contains several major strains of friendly bacteria not commonly found in yogurt, Lactobacillus Caucasus, Leuconostoc, Acetobacter species, and Streptococcus species.

It also contains beneficial yeasts, such as Saccharomyces kefir and Torula kefir, which dominate, control and eliminate destructive pathogenic yeasts in the body. They do so by penetrating the mucosal lining where unhealthy yeast and bacteria reside, forming a virtual SWAT team that housecleans and strengthens the intestines. Hence, the body becomes more efficient in resisting such pathogens as E. coli and intestinal parasites.

Kefir’s active yeast and bacteria provide more nutritive value than yogurt by helping digest the foods that you eat and by keeping the colon environment clean and healthy. Because the curd size of kefir is smaller than yogurt, it is also easier to digest, which makes it a particularly excellent, nutritious food for babies, the elderly and people experiencing chronic fatigue and digestive disorders.

Now that I have kefir grains, what do I do with them?

You are starting out with 1 tablespoon of grains.

Add this to 1 cup of milk.

I put them into a pint mason jar, close the lid and let sit on your kitchen counter for 24 hours, out of direct sunlight. Pour kefir into a strainer, with a bowl underneath. Take a spatula and work the kefir through the strainer. You’ll be left with the grains, which are gelatinous cauliflower like substances, ranging in size from a small piece of grain to a fairly large piece.

NOTE: The first time you make your kefir, if your grains were stored in water, the fermentation period might be more like 36 hours vs. the typical 24 hours.

The consistency will be slightly thick and have a more pungent smell to it. You’re good to go.

Rinse out the jar that you fermented in and put the grains back into the jar along with another cup of milk. DO NOT rinse your grains.

Wait another 24 hours and repeat the process above. You can continue this indefinitely.

Your grains will grow. Expect this to happen after the first couple of weeks of fermenting with them. After that, they will expand a little more rapidly.

Keep them, make more kefir, store them in another jar of milk in the refrigerator or share them with family and friends.

Always keep your ratio of 1 tablespoon of grains to 1 cup of milk. If you want to make more because you have more grains, just keep this same measure and you’ll be fine.

When I make a quart, I use approx. 3 tablespoons of grains to 3 cups of milk.

If I have unused kefir, I store it in a mason jar with a lid in my refrigerator. It will keep for a couple of weeks, no problem. Another thing I like to do is fill an ice cube tray with them, freeze and then pop into a freezer bag. These are great for smoothies or anything else you might want to use them for. I find that 3 cubes equals approx. ¼ cup, which is a nice measurement for some recipes. You can thaw and use.

Another tip: If you find yourself with an abundance of kefir because you haven’t been using it as frequently or you’re traveling and can’t keep up with production, add them to some milk in a jar and store them in your refrigerator.

When you’re ready to start up again, measure out a tablespoon to 1 cup of milk and start again.

Use kefir in smoothies, baked goods, dressings; make whey from it and so much more.

You can also just drink it straight up. Yum!

There are some great ways to do a second ferment as well. My favorite is to peel the skin from an orange or lemon, place in a jar and pour the finished kefir over it. Place the lid on the jar and set on your counter another 24 hours.

The kefir will take on the citrusy flavor and won’t be so sour tasting. This is especially good for those not accustomed to the flavor of regular kefir or just those that like something a bit different and refreshing.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do and I hope to hear from you.

What’s been your experience with making or drinking kefir? Comment below!

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Are you serious about taking charge of your health? If so, we need to talk. Click here if you’ve decided that now’s the time to get some accountability and take back your life!

 

 

 

Inflammation and Gut Flora – From Brain to Gut

shocked business woman

From Brain to Gut – Inflammation and Gut Flora – about now you’re probably saying “What?”

 

Hang with me if you will and I’ll explain.

 

You see, our bodies are designed to run like a really well-oiled machine. They are complex and diverse. The problem arises when we think we know what’s best and put in the wrong fuel, fuel filter and we don’t change the oil.

 

What do you suppose happens over time? We don’t get very good gas mileage, the engine is missing badly, the exhaust is smoking and polluting up the place and eventually the engine just stops.

 

Hmmm….we then run to the doctor and cry for help. “Something’s just not right” you say! The Doctor asked you a few questions and writes something illegible on a pad, hands it to you and sends you on your way. BUT, not before charging you for ½ days wages and then you get to the pharmacy and they want another ½ days wages to fill your meds.

 

Something’s wrong with this picture. But it’s the truth isn’t it? When we continue to eat prepackaged and commercialized foods, we are causing our bodies to work extremely hard to process ingredients that the body doesn’t know what are and quite frankly has no use for.

 

Even though the food industry and big Ag will tell you that their products are the best on the market and are “good” for you, your body knows best! It’s now fighting with everything it’s got, day after day after day. Over time, it’s being demanded to overwork continually, and what happens to you when you work really hard continually? You fizz out, you’re tired, and you can’t keep doing it. You quit!

 

Guess what your body is doing too? It’s fizzing out, it’s fighting back the only way it knows how. It’s been giving you red flags for some time now and you aren’t listening. So it then gets serious and knocks you out with its defenses, called inflammation. Which really is a necessary part of the body’s defense mechanisms, but when overtaxed and overworked, it goes into overdrive and causes major problems.

 

  • Obesity
  • Cancer
  • Heart Disease
  • Autoimmune Disease

 

If it’s killing people, increasing health care costs and reducing your quality of life, inflammation is probably involved at some level.

 

Because our 2nd brain relies on good healthy gut flora to balance things out, what do you suppose happens over time when all the “not so good for you foods” keep getting put in, antibiotics, anti-bacterial soaps, chlorinated water, pollution and agricultural chemicals keep bombarding your gut? The bad guys take over.

 

You want to have more good guys than bad and in order to do that, you must be feeding your gut a healthy dose of probiotics daily or my favorite influx of good foods like yogurt, kefir and fermented veggies, like Kimchi, Sauerkraut and the like.

 

So you might be wondering what inflammation and gut flora have to do with one another. Simple. When the bad bacteria take over the gut, this is thought of as bad stimuli. When bad stimuli are running the house, you get inflammation. Gut inflammation is at the heart of many diseases, such as a number of autoimmune diseases, leaky gut, and many others.

 

Without going into great detail of the inner happenings within the intestinal walls, the idea is that we want and need to keep the ratio of good bacteria over bad bacteria running smoothly.

 

You might be asking, well what happens when my gut has been compromised? The answer, it’s quite possible to reverse and heal. Will it be immediate? No, BUT, you can and do often times see some pretty amazing results quickly.

 

Don’t let all this information overwhelm you or paralyze you. Realize that it does take you to jump in the driver’s seat, put in the proper fuel, get regular check-ups and stay the course, even when you don’t feel like it.

 

Your body does need your help! Are you willing to do what it takes to be well again? With the assistance of others who have been down this path, amazing healing is possible. All you have to do is say “It’s time.”

 

What’s been your biggest health challenge and how do you see yourself getting well?

 

To your health,

 

Kellie

 

PS: If you’re truly ready to take the next step and say that “It’s time”, click here to schedule some time to discuss your next steps in the healing process. Remember, we truly only get one shot at this life, what’s yours saying about you? Are you just getting by or have you decided you’d like to claim your life back? Click here and let’s talk!

 

Is your waistline expanding? How bacteria in your gut is linked!

Woman weight loss photo

I very much believe in the mind body spirit connection for the simple reason that everything we do is as a whole. We don’t disconnect the head from the body, although sometimes that would be nice and we don’t disconnect the spirit from the body and the mind.

 

When we are flowing into our passions and purpose, we find ourselves more at peace and thus less stressed.

 

With less stress comes weight loss in general. Why? Simple, we aren’t producing an overabundance of stress hormones called cortisol, which has shown to increase belly fat and we aren’t stuffing our faces mindlessly.

 

My own story with this scenario is that I personally didn’t realize how stressed I really was. Looking back, my dear friends and family will give me the sideways eye look when I say “I didn’t think I was that stressed.” As a result I put on a few extra pounds.

 

Since my focus has changed, I’ve lowered my stress and I’ve been more mindful of what goes into my mouth, my weight has just dropped off over the last few months, along with feeding my gut flora all the stuff it loves.

 

It’s really not rocket science. Our gut health plays into this perfectly. There are some very interesting studies taking place that are proving more and more that our “2nd brain” definitely has some play into excess weight. Did you also know that 70-80% of your immune system comes from the health of your gut?

 

The latest World Health Organization figures show there were more than 1.4 billion adults aged 20 or older who were overweight in 2008.

 

Of these, 200 million men and nearly 300 million women were obese.

 

Since these latest numbers are from 2008, we know these have risen, unfortunately.

 

Of the studies being done, researchers think that changing the type of bacteria found in the gut may be more effective at helping people to shed weight than cutting calories alone.

 

More and more research does show that your gut bacteria impacts your weight. There are other studies that show that lean people tend to have higher amounts of various healthy bacteria compared to obese people.

 

There was one particular study from 2011 found that daily intake of a specific form of lactic acid bacteria could help prevent obesity and reduce low-level inflammation.

 

Babies that are breastfed tend to have lower risk of obesity because of the bacteria mix flourishing in their guts that are found in breast milk. Probiotics also appear beneficial in helping women lose weight after childbirth when taken from the first trimester through breastfeeding.

 

There are other studies that have shown obese people losing fat by just drinking a probiotic-rich fermented milk beverage for 12 weeks. Probiotics have also been found to benefit metabolic syndrome, which often times goes hand in hand with obesity.

 

The reason this makes sense is that both are caused by a diet high in sugars, which leads to insulin resistance, fuels the growth of unhealthy bacteria and packs on excess weight.

 

Our modern diets have left our gut flora very overloaded with bad bacteria and not enough good. We need to “reseed” our gut with a good high-quality probiotic supplement or my favorite way is to eat and drink non-pasteurized traditionally fermented foods like:

 

  • Fermented veggies/fruits
  • Fermented milk products like kefir
  • Natto, which is fermented soy
  • Kombucha, fermented tea

 

Of the many reasons these foods are so beneficial, one of them is the fact that they contain lactic acid bacteria, which of course has health benefits over and beyond any weight-loss benefits, including a wide array of other healthy bacteria.

 

There are many different types and I recommend eating different varieties so as to inject many different bacteria types. This is a huge step in the right direction. You still need pay attention to the rest of your diet, especially if it’s poor. Processed foods as an example will compromise your gut bacteria as it will destroy healthy microflora and feed bad bacteria and yeast.

 

Other things that affect our microflora are:

 

  • Antibiotics
  • Chlorinated water
  • Antibacterial soap/wipes
  • Pollution
  • Ag chemicals

 

Let’s also not forget the meats that you eat. If you’re buying commercial meat, they are loaded with antibiotics, which affect you. My strong recommendation is to reach out to local organic farmers who product grass-fed beef and pastured chickens. They will not be using antibiotics and they are eating a healthy diet.

 

There are many local CSA (community supported agriculture) groups available. Linking to them will help you find produce and meat that are free from chemicals and antibiotics.

 

The Weston Price Foundation has chapters all over the world and there are many connections to buying good, clean, healthy food.

 

When you tend to the health of your gut, your overall health will improve. There is a whole “ecosystem” that has taken up residency inside your gut. The type and kind are important. What you put in determines the overall health of these organisms. They can either prevent or encourage the development of many diseases, including heart disease and diabetes and many help dictate the ease with which you’re able to shed unwanted pounds.

 

This really needs to be an ongoing process since most of us are exposed daily to factors that will destroy beneficial bacteria in the gut.

 

Cultured/fermented foods like raw milk, yogurt, kefir, some cheeses and veggies are excellent sources of natural, healthy bacterial.

 

These foods/drinks need to become a part of your regular diet. If you don’t start here, then please take a high-quality probiotic supplement, especially if you are straying away from a healthy diet and find yourself consuming too much sugar and eating too many grains that haven’t been prepared properly.

 

If you have to take antibiotics due to an illness, make sure to put in good probiotics into your system right away. The benefit of the antibiotics doesn’t know the good from the bad bacteria, it just seeks and destroys all bacteria. You have to inoculate your gut constantly.

 

I am “The Gut Lady” not by accident.

 

Do you have stubborn weight that seems to be your best friend and not go away no matter what you do?

 

The health of your gut depends on these!

Carolina Style Slaw

Hello everyone,

These last several weeks have been so interesting getting to talk with so many of you about the health of your gut!

The more you know, the healthier you’ll be. However, just knowing doesn’t solve all the problems. Part of the equation is implantation or action.

I am a perfect example of knowing things and not necessarily taking quick action. On some things yes and others, I tend to drag my feet or wait until I have all my “ducks in a row.” Can any of you relate?

Why is that? I mean, if we know something is really good for us and it’s proven to work, why don’t we always do it? Why do we humans tend to take the long way around things?

The irony is that we often come back around to what we know we should be doing in the first place. We could have not taken up so much time if we just would have taken action in the first place.

The good news is this. You can jump on board when you are ready. Just don’t waste too much time getting around to it or lining up those “ducks.”

Since I have a passion for making and consuming fermented foods, I thought I’d share some history that I found fascinating and along with that some benefits and why you should be consuming these incredible healing foods. So let’s dive in, shall we?

What are Fermented Foods?

Let’s first look at todays’ foods. Most of today’s pickles and sauerkraut are made with vinegar instead of the traditional method of lacto-fermentation using salt and/or whey. Bread and pasta are made with commercial yeast instead of being naturally leavened with wild yeast as in a real sourdough. Wine, beer and cheeses are pasteurized, which kills off all the good bacteria we so desperately need to maintain health.

There are many advantages to going back to the traditional ways of our ancestors, and eating more fermented foods. And no they aren’t scary or hurt you.

Let’s now look at our history. Humans all over the world have been fermenting food since ancient times. The earliest evidence of winemaking dates back to eight thousand years ago in the Caucasus area of Georgia. Seven-thousand-year-old jars which once contained wine were excavated in the Zagros Mountains in Iran. There is evidence that people were making fermented beverages in Babylon around 5000 BC, ancient Egypt circa 3150 BC, pre-Hispanic Mexico circa 2000 BC, and Sudan circa 1500 BC. There is also evidence of leavened bread in ancient Egypt dating back to 1500 BC and of milk fermentation in Babylon circa 3000 BC.

“In the normal scheme of things, we’d never have to think twice about replenishing the bacteria that allow us to digest food. But since we’re living with antibiotic drugs and chlorinated water and antibacterial soap and all these factors in our contemporary lives that I’d group together as a ‘war on bacteria,’ if we fail to replenish [good bacteria], we won’t effectively get nutrients out of the food we’re eating.” – Sandor Katz

Benefits of Eating Fermented Foods

Improves Digestion – Fermenting our foods before we eat them is like partially digesting them before we eat or drink them. Sometimes people who can’t tolerate milk can eat yogurt or consume kefir. That’s because the lactose (which is usually the part people can’t tolerate) in milk is broken down as the milk is fermented and turns into yogurt and kefir.

Adding Good Bacteria to Your Gut – Fermented foods restore the proper balance of bacteria in the gut. If you have issues with lactose intolerance, gluten intolerance, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), yeast infections, allergies, or asthma, all of these conditions have been linked to a lack of good bacteria in the gut.

Boost Enzymes – Eating raw, fermented foods are rich in enzymes. Your body needs enzymes to adequately digest, absorb, and utilize the nutrients in your food. As you age, your body’s production of enzymes goes down.

Increase Vitamins – Fermenting food actually increases the vitamin content. Fermented dairy products show an increased level of folic acid which is critical to producing healthy babies as well as B vitamins, riboflavin and biotin depending on the strains of bacteria present.

Better Absorption – Eating fermented food helps us to absorb the nutrients we’re consuming. You can ingest huge amounts of nutrients, but unless you actually absorb them, they’re useless to you. When you improve digestion, you improve absorption.

Better Preservation – Fermenting food helps to preserve it for longer periods of time. Have you ever noticed how forgotten milk gets sour and rancid pretty quickly? But kefir and yogurt last a lot longer. Sauerkraut, pickles and salsa will keep for months. And if you’ve got a huge batch of produce in your garden that you don’t know how to use up — ferment it!

Cost Effective – If you were to start experimenting with fermenting, you’ll find that you don’t need any fancy or expensive equipment. The food types that you can use in fermented are usually not expensive, especially if you’re able to grow many of them yourself or someone you know.

Chock full of Flavor – Fermenting food increases the flavor. Just think of the last time you ate some great cheese or drank a nice glass of wine, you did this because they taste good. We’ve also grown up with sauerkraut as a favorite hot dog condiment or roast pork and sauerkraut for New Year’s Day for good luck.

Here are some good ways to incorporate more fermented foods into your diet

1. Eat real sourdough bread (you don’t want commercial breads made with yeast)

2. Drink fermented beverages like kombucha, kefir, or kefir soda to name a few.

3. Eat fermented veggies and fruits, like pickles, sauerkraut, salsa, and kimchi and don’t forget about fermented condiments, like mayonnaise, ketchup, sour cream, crème fraiche, and the like.

All of these things can be made at home or purchased from someone you know. They are often also available at Health Food stores.

If you’re like me and want to experiment, there are lots of ways to do so. Things like kefir ice cream, crackers that are actually made with sourdough, fermented coconut water and milk. There are fermented wines to be made and also mead which is a wine made from honey.

I often make breakfast cereals from kefir and soaked oats or smoothies from kefir. I also make a mean applesauce as well as several varieties of veggies, slaws and krauts. The ideas are endless.

No more excuses for not getting your ferments in daily.

What’s been your experience with fermented foods and/or drinks? Leave your comments below.

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Have questions, hit the Let’s Talk Button and ask away or schedule some time with me to get them answered. I consider no question a dumb question only a smart one!