Bug Alert: You’ve Got Company

Headache

Bug Alert: You’ve Got Company is the introduction title of the book Brain Maker: The Power of Gut Microbes to Heal and Protect Your Brain for Life by David Perlmutter, MD

This book came highly recommended to me recently by a friend and I’ve dove into it. While I haven’t finished it as of yet, I wanted to share part of the introduction because I found a lot of the statistics to be worth sharing as most of us need some eye openers once in a while to make us sit up and pay attention or to take action.

Death begins in the colon. – Elie Mechnikov (1845-1916)

Take a moment to think about how much has changed in our world over the past century, thanks to medical research. No longer do we worry about dying from smallpox, dysentery, diphtheria, cholera, or scarlet fever. We’ve made huge strides in lowering the death rates of many life-threatening maladies, including HIV/AIDS, some forms of cancer, and heart disease. But when you consider brain-related diseases and disorders, the picture is vastly different.

Advances in preventing, treating and curing debilitating neurological ailments across the life cycle – from autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to migraines, depression, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s – are virtually nonexistent. And, sadly we are quickly losing ground as the incidences of these conditions are increasing in our society.

Let’s consider a few numbers. In the ten wealthiest Western nations, death from brain disease in general, which largely reflects death from dementia, has risen dramatically over the past twenty years. And the United States leads the way. In fact, a 2013 British report showed that since 1979, death due to brain disease increased a breathtaking 66 percent in men and 92 percent in women in America.

In the words of the study’s lead author, Professor Colin Prichard, “These stastics are about real people and families, and we need to (recognize) that there is an ‘epidemic’ that clearly is influenced by environmental and societal changes.”

The researchers also noted how this surge, which is affecting people at younger and younger ages, is in sharp contrast to the major reductions in risk of death from all other causes.

In 2013, the New England Journal of Medicine published a report revealing that we spend about $50,000 annually caring for each dementia patient in this country. This amounts to approximately $200 billion a year, twice what we spend on caring for heart disease patients and almost triple what we spend on treatment for cancer patients.

Mood and anxiety disorders are also on the upswing and can be equally as crippling to quality of life as other neuorological conditions. About one in four adults in the U.S. – more than 26 percent of the population – suffers from a diagnosable mental disorder. Anxiety disorders afflict more than 40 million Americans, and nearly 10 percent of the U.S. adult population has a mood discorder for which powerful drugs are prescribed. Depression, which afflicts one in ten of us (including a quarter of women in their forties and fifties), is now the leading cause of disability worldwide, and diagnoses are growing at a startling rate.

Medications like Prozac and Zoloft are among the most prescribed drugs in the nation. Mind you, these drugs treat symptoms of depression, not the causes, which are flagrantly ignored.

On average, people with severe mental illness, such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, die twenty-five years earlier than the general population. (This is partially due to the fact that these individuals are more likely to smoke, abuse alcohol and drugs, and be overweight with obesity-related illnesses in addition to their mental challenges).

Headaches, including migraines, are among the most common disorders of the nervous system; nearly half of the adult population wrestles with at least one headache per month. And they are more than an inconvenience; they are associated with disability, personal suffering, damaged quality of life, and financial cost. We tend to think of headaches as being inexpensive nuisances, especially since many drugs that treat them are relatively cheap and easy to access (e.g., aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen), but according to the National Pain Foundation, they cause more than 160 million lost work days each year in the U.S. and result in about $30 billion a year in medical expenses.

Multiple sclerosis, a disabling autoimmune disease that disrupts the nervous system’s ability to communicate, now affects an estimated two and a half million people worldwide, with close to half a million in America, and is becoming increasingly more prevalent. The average lifetime cost of treating someone with MS exceeds $1.2 million. Mainstream medicine tells us that there is no cure in sight.

And then there is autism, which has surged seven to eight-fold just in the past 15 years, making this truly a modern-day epidemic.

To be sure, hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent on these and other enfeebling brain-related ailments, yet we are seeing precious little progress.

Now for the good news: New, leading-edge science coming from the most well-respected institutions around the world is discovering that to an extraordinary degree, brain health and on the flip side, brain diseases, are dictated by what goes on in the gut. That’s right; what’s taking place in your intestines today is determining your risk for any number of neurological conditions.

Dr. Perlmutter goes on to make the connection between brain and gut, which ironically not-so-mainstream has known all along.

What I find interesting is that now science is finally backing what many of us have known and that’s really good news for so many afflicted with today’s inflictions.

It all basically comes down to “You are what you eat.” Anyone can change the state of their microbiome (gut flora) – and fate of their health – through dietary choices.

The sooner you realize that the choices lie in your hands, the sooner you can take back your health.

We’ll continue this discussion in further posts. There is just so much to share.

Need help mapping out a plan, book an appointment with me and let’s talk about this might look like for you.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments below. Do you agree that you have control or do you believe you are destined to be ill and let the Doctors take over?

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Wellness Mentor

Gut health and serotonin production

Depression

A recent health news article was an interesting read because it involves us, you and me! Gut health and serotonin production are being further studied to scientifically prove the correlation between the two.

This is important to you because serotonin is the happy chemical. It’s the one that makes us feel like we have sunshine or a dark cloud following us around. It affects our emotions and behaviors.

This particular study is interesting because scientists estimate that 90% of serotonin is made in the gut and imbalances in this peripheral serotonin have been linked to diseases ranging from irritable bowel syndrome and cardiovascular disease to osteoporosis.

In this particular study done at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena the researchers were interesting in find out more about how gut microbes and the nervous system talk to each other and explore the idea that normal gut microbes could influence levels of neurotransmitters in their hosts.

In the gut, there are three types of cell we know of that produce serotonin: immune cells, nerve cells or neurons and enterochromaffin (EC) cells.

For this particular study, they compared peripheral serotonin levels produced from these cells in two groups of mice, one with normal gut microbes and another group of germ-free mice without gut bacteria.

The team found that in the germ-free mice, their EC cells produced around 60% less serotonin than the mice with normal gut bacteria.

And when the restored bacteria colonies in the gut of the germ-free mice, their EC cells began producing normal levels of serotonin – showing the effect on the EC cells can be reversed.

Next they looked at which bacteria in particular were interacting with the EC cells to make serotonin.

They introduced single species and groups of gut microbes one by one in the germ-free mice and found that serotonin levels went up when there was a certain mix of about 20 species of spore-forming bacteria.

Also interesting is that introducing this particular bacterial mix into the germ-free mice increased the movement of food through their digestive tract. It also changed activities in their blood platelets, which use serotonin to boost clotting.

The team also found several metabolic byproducts of gut bacteria are controlled by the mix of spore-forming bacteria and act on EC cells to alter serotonin production.

When the metabolic byproducts were increased in the germ-free mice, it increased their levels of peripheral serotonin.

There are other investigations that have shown bacteria can make serotonin on their own. The researchers say their study suggests a lot of the serotonin in the body relies on the interaction between bacteria and host cells.

This is all really exciting news especially for those suffering from mild depression to those who suffer extensively.

The more scientific proof, the more mainstream pays attention and the more help there is.

If you’ve been following me for a while you know that I’m a huge advocate for consuming a healthy mix of fermented foods and drinks, eating nutrient-dense food and imputing healthy fats into our bodies.

This also doesn’t mean eliminating whole food groups from your system either; unless of course you are in a healing stage and introduction of certain foods like dairy or grains are added in later.

It all boils down to the health of your gut. When it’s healthy, your whole body is healthy. Serotonin plays such a vital role in the body, namely lifting our mood and our entire outlook.

Are you unclear about what healing the gut looks like? Share your comments and thoughts below and let’s get some answers for you OR if you’ve had some success, share your wins so we can celebrate what’s working for you.

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Wellness Mentor

Toxicity and Skincare: Ever wonder how it affects your health?

Surprise

A few weeks ago brought up a conversation about acne. So I posed the question… ever wonder how it affects your health?

It’s kind of an odd question really, but there is a direct correlation between your skin breakouts, like acne, eczema, psoriasis, etc. and gut health that most don’t know about and actually are surprised by it.

If scientists are saying that the gut is considered the “2nd brain,” would you agree that it controls most bodily functions and go so far as to agree that if your gut isn’t healthy, the rest of you isn’t healthy?

A lot to take in isn’t it? When we frame a question like this one, it allows our brains to think about situations in a slightly different way. It plants seeds of doubt or of insight, depending on what’s being presented.

Either way, a seed has been planted for us to either put away for later use (I call this my back pocket) or to research and dig into further at the present time.

Today, I propose we dig into toxicity and skincare and gut health. When our world is toxic, from the foods we eat, to the air we breathe to the products we use in our homes and on our bodies, our health pays a price.

Toxins are everywhere. Even those of us who pay special attention to exposure, will still be affected. It’s the world we live in. We can, however, limit how much by some changes.

One of the biggest organs of our body is our skin. A vast majority of what we put on it gets absorbed into the body. Once there, some of these toxins wreak havoc on our system causing illness and disease.

This then led me to an email that I received from EWG (Environmental Working Group) talking about their fabulous tool called Skin Deep which is a Cosmetics Database.

They are finally mobile so you can have a cool app on your phone and while shopping can search a product and get a score of how toxic the product is or if it passes their testing to be deemed safe to use.

It rates all the ingredients in a particular product and gives an overall score. I love it, no more guesswork and taking a manufacturer’s word for just truly how good a product is.

We all know that marketing is done to sell a product. It doesn’t necessarily mean that all facts stated are true and in our best interest.

If you’d like to check out this great tool for yourself, as well as a few other incredible apps they have, like their sunscreen app, food scores, healthy cleaning, pesticides and produce, as well as others, check them out at www.ewg.org and be prepared to be educated on what’s perhaps been affecting your health all along and you didn’t even know it.

I find that the less we have to think about what to use and what not to use and there’s someone that’s a trusted source that has taken a lot of the guess work out of it, kudos to them and yea for us for plugging in.

What products have you successfully been able to purchase or make to reduce the toxic load in your skincare or household? I’m looking forward to your comments below.

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Wellness Mentor

Autoimmune Disease: 3rd Leading Chronic Disease

Meds

If you’re like me, reading that Autoimmune Diseases are now considered the 3rd leading chronic disease, right behind right heart disease and cancer is eye opening!

Over 50 million Americans are affected and a large percentage of that number is women. They are the top ten leading cause of death in women under the age of 65 and they come in more than 80 different varieties.

These include things such as Lupus, Psoriasis, Multiple Sclerosis, Thyroid Disease, Thyroid Disease, Type I Diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis and so many more.

If you’re not familiar, autoimmune disease is a disease of the immune system and one of the biggest problems with diagnosis is that Doctors don’t look or recognize these immune diseases as diseases of the immune system as whole but instead they are looked at as diseases of particular organs.

What this means really, is that you’ll be shipped to different specialists for different issues. Many people who suffer from one autoimmune disease also suffer from a few and that means many specialists.

Our current medical beliefs are that once someone is afflicted with an autoimmune disease, they are no cures or ways to reverse the affects, only treatments of managing the symptoms, which means some really harsh meds that are supposed to suppress the immune system.

The problem with suppressing your whole immune system is the side effects that often arrive too. Things like depression, weight gain, fatigue, more chance for infection and even cancer.

My belief and that of many others who believe in holistic health and functional health believe that our bodies work together. So when one area is affected, it affects other areas. The same is for a healthy system or area.

When you can treat the root causes of diseases and not the symptoms, it’s possible to reverse many of the effects of these often debilitating diseases.

I believe, having my focus on the gut, plays an integral part on your whole body health.

If you were to look at the reasons that often times lay hidden behind other things, there really are only a handful of places to start paying attention to.

The first thing I look at is Gluten Intolerance. I think many people think of the gut first, which it is damaging to, but it’s also detrimental to our neurological system too, like pain, sleep, fatigue, depression, brain fog and others. Many don’t associate these symptoms to so many autoimmune diseases.

Let’s also think about the term “leaky gut”. Many times our gut is so damaged by things like stress, gluten, meds and infections that our gut becomes  permeable, which means it allows our food particles to escape through the gut walls into our bloodstream, which then means we’re not absorbing the nutrients that your body needs to function properly.

The escape of toxins and gluten starts to form inflammation which then leads us right to autoimmune diseases.

I just mentioned toxins as a culprit. We are surrounded my much in our current environment. Heavy metals, like mercury are a factor. Think of exposure from sources like mercury fillings you might have in your teeth. Some fish are heavily exposed.

Let’s not forget stress. While some stress isn’t harmful, chronic stress is. It leads to inflammation that is on all the time, which over time leads to autoimmune disease.

So, I hope you’re now wondering how one helps themselves to better health other than conventional medicine.

My answer; gut health healing is a great place to begin.

What this means is this, elimination to begin with. You have to learn what the culprits are. I’m not by any means saying to eliminate foods from your diet forever. You need to find out what the triggers are, heal the gut, which controls about 80% of your immune system, and then you can start slowly introducing foods back in.

The whole idea isn’t to eliminate gluten forever; the idea is to become gluten tolerant.

Dairy and grains is another culprit for many. The idea isn’t to eliminate forever.

Your body needs to heal. This means managing stress, treating any possible infections, and reducing toxins in your system.

The overall idea is to get to the root of the problems, treat and reverse those, and not to suppress your entire immune system, which leads to other problems.

I believe that you aren’t intended to be living a life of mediocrity and feeling bad or not living your life at all.

How many people do you know that are afflicted? We all need to ban together and spread the good news. There is hope and healing.

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

PS: Are you personally affected or do you know someone who’s suffering with an autoimmune disease(s)? Give yourself hope or someone you know. By clicking here, I would be happy to talk with you to determine where you are today and make a plan to get your life back. Not one filled with pain and suffering and fatigue. Light and Love are being sent your way!

 

Can you help spread the word?

imagesCABWV6NJ

Another awesome week and great conversations with so many leave me feeling blessed and humbled.

Have a told you lately how blessed I am to be a Holistic Health Coach? Do you realize that I “get to” help so many on their health journeys?

I don’t “have to” share any of the amazing wisdom and knowledge that I have gained over the years, I “get to”.

So, I am asking your support in spreading the word on so many accounts. If you or a loved one is suffering needlessly and needs some guidance, send them my way.

If you or a loved one is befuddled with where to truly start, ask me, I’ll help demystify and together we’ll make a game plan to start walking in the right and best direction.

The basis of this article really was to shed some light on chickens, as I was engaged in a conversation this week with a gentleman who has Celiac disease and he and his wife are navigating the healthier side of nutrition and practicing what they are learning.

Trial and error is what happens a lot for all of us. We quickly figure out what we don’t know and quickly go figure it out. However, there are many who just get frustrated and give up! This is where spreading the word comes in too! We can’t keep what we know a secret. We have to share and pass along!

In our conversation, it was mentioned that he needed to consume bone broth “stock” and said that they could go to “Sam’s Club” and get a rotisserie chicken for $5 bucks, and you can’t beat that.

While I listened to him say this, it struck me that this is a lot of the thinking that has gotten us into trouble with our health.

We think in terms of cost, what’s easiest and fastest. While I’m not saying this is necessarily wrong, what if we tweaked this line of thinking.

What if we processed our thoughts with, how can I consume the freshest, locally grown or raised meats and produce at the best possible price? How could I best benefit his/her family while doing the same for mine?

Could you imagine what our economy would look like, not only our economic climate, but our health as well?

If we were to stop relying on what’s cheapest and easiest and switch from what’s freshest and raised locally and in season, what would your world look like?

Does it take a little more thought and planning? Sure, but not really any more than you’re currently doing by making the many trips to the grocery or through the drive-thru restaurants.

While I gave the gentlemen some education on the difference between his $5 chicken and a good healthy pastured chicken, by basically saying that there really is no comparison in terms of health and nutrition in the two.

Comparison in terms of fat – pasture-raised poultry contain 21 percent less fat than conventional chickens and 30 percent less saturated fat.

Pastured-raised poultry has 50 percent more vitamin A compared to conventional raised broilers.

Omega-3 fatty acids are significantly higher as well, which reduce your risks of cancer. People with higher levels of Omega-3 are less likely to have high blood pressure or irregular heartbeat. They are 50 percent less likely to suffer a heart attack and less likely to suffer from depression, schizophrenia, attention deficit disorder or Alzheimer’s disease.

It has been estimated that only 40 percent of Americans consume an adequate supply of omega-3 fatty acids. Twenty percent have blood levels so low that they cannot be detected. Switching to meat, milk and dairy products of grass-fed animals is one way to restore this vital nutrient to your diet.

There is also no residue from pesticides, growth hormones or other chemicals that you will have from commercially raised birds.

Best of all, the excellent texture and taste won’t even come close to comparing to a commercial raised bird.

When the birds are healthy, so are you. When you support your local farmer, our economy is healthy. You see, it’s a win, win, win!

The gentlemen shared that he would probably have to go far to obtain pasture-raised chicken and I shared a local farmer’s location; he was delighted to know that it wasn’t truly very far to go to get good food.

Let’s also not forget about the wonderful egg. Hens raised on pasture are far more nutritious than hens confined in factory farms. Eggs from hens raised on pasture are also showing 4 to 6 times as much Vitamin D as typical supermarket eggs.

Not to mention 1/3 less cholesterol, ¼ less saturated fat, 2/3 more vitamin A, 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids, 3 times more Vitamin E and 7 times more beta carotene.

So you see I need help spreading the word. The word of health, hope and healing. Are you up for the challenge?

To your health,

Kellie

Holistic Health Coach

 

PS: Claim your spot now, don’t delay or think about it anymore. Life is too short to dilly dally, as they say! Click here and “Let’s talk”.

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!

 

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!