We know that the body can’t live without water, but what about the basic nutritional foundations of fats, carbs, and proteins? Gotta have them! And in balance! But what if there is way to “super-power” our nutrition…
The amazing process of “fermenting” or “culturing” foods is absolutely vital to our health! It is the power of allowing naturally occurring bacteria and beneficial yeasts to act upon our foods. This process pre-digests the nutrients for us, making the foods much easier for our own bodies to assimilate. These awesome microbial friends also rush to over-take the harmful microbes that we are harboring in our entire digestive tract. In fact, we already have an enormous number of microbes living with us, and they out-number our own cells 10 to 1! When they are in the correct balance, these microbes are such amazing friends… ever working to aid digestion! And, lest we forget, digestion is KEY to health! We can’t bypass digestion and think that life will be comfortable. (For more information, please see link suggestion at the end of this page.)
All systems of the body depend upon nutrients to perform their assigned tasks. These nutrients reach the miniscule cellular level through the highly complex process of breaking down every bite of food into something helpful for sustaining cellular life. Now, pause and contemplate a Dorito. What about an Oreo? How about a Diet Coke. Crazy and amazing that our bodies are still upright when we send in such non-foods for the body to break down. We are not blessing the body with a food source that it recognizes as nutrition, nonetheless, the body is brilliant and will work to the point of fatigue to survive on nutritional rations. I am still amazed that we are puzzled about our growing list of ailments.
How have we become so naive when it comes to the most obvious cause and effect of our health? I certainly lived under such a veil!
The automobile you drive must have gasoline. I can’t pour in gasoline with water and expect my car to run well. And isn’t that the argument we have all used… well there is water in Coke. The body can find it. Well, I surely said that too (before my demise).
Let me circle back to the gift that cultured foods can be for all of us…
Every culture around the globe has a variety of this sort of “sacred” food. Think kimchi, think miso soup, think sauerkraut. In the U.S., we might be used to a yogurt or perhaps you dabble in buttermilk. Cultures are certainly used in creating cheeses and cultured butters even. All of these are wonderful foods to intake, but we have allowed the factory to create, market, and shelf them for us. The original products were divine, but our commercial shortcuts have pushed in radical amounts of refined sugars and greatly reduced the essence of what makes a cultured food… well… cultured. Sauerkraut, for example, can be found in every grocery story across the land, but there is no fermentation anymore (with the exception of a very few brands found in natural groceries). Vinegar has become the number one ingredient.. this creates a “sour” taste which goes with cultured foods, but it has no microbial benefits! (Let me say that organic vinegars, like Bragg’s apple cider vinegar with the “mother” is a great exception!)
WITH GREAT ENTHUSIASM, I TALK MUCH ABOUT KEFIR (which is glorious cultured milk), but I WANT TO POINT YOU TO ANOTHER HEALTH-PROMOTING GIFT:
They are foods laden with SOUR POWER!
The tart taste is something that our American diet does not incorporate except with sugar-laden candies (sour patch kids), but it is the taste we might just all be craving! It is the taste of healing and sealing the struggling digestive tract! It is the taste of correcting years of digestive woes and perhaps untold aches and pains! It is the taste of powerful, powerful probiotics presented to the body in a form it understands… real food!
But like all new things, the first few attempts will take a little extra time. As you find some flavors you like, and as you truly begin to benefit from these food-wonders, then making a batch might just become a rhythm of life that you cherish.
Please stay tuned as I submit posts around this topic. One of my favorite cyber-space-cultured-food-mentors is Donna Schwenk. By clicking a link at the bottom of this page, you will be scooted over to her fabulous site which is a source of great inspiration and helps. Or, you might want to click here to jump to the recipe for GOURMET CULTURED GRAPES! This recipe is a wonderful place to begin…
My final comment to you on this post would be one of encouragement. Hey… we all eat on the go and do the best we can with our family budgets. We can’t eat perfectly! It is impossible! There. I feel better. Let’s just let that idea fade away… GOODBYE GUILT-RIDDEN LIE OF LIVING LIKE PIONEER POLLY ON THE HIGHWAY OF THE 21st CENTURY! I am finding solace in accepting the fact that the past is the past… I am choosing the quality of my tomorrows each moment of today. Some things are being tossed; some things are being discovered! The walk is full of wonderful newness!
And here’s where I settle down regarding the daily stuff… I have heard it said by the experts that if we choose to eat well for 70 to 80 percent of the time, then our bodies can roll through the 20 to 30 percent of questionable stuff. We can do that, right? Just be mindful of doing the best we can and give grace when the schedule or the budget puts up a roadblock. We can’t live defeated and guilt-ridden! We can live mindfully and prayerfully. The Lord will give us direction and ideas and encouragement!
And if you need some encouragement regarding the importance of fine-tuning the GUT, please take the time to read BLESS THE GUT. This information is WILDLY IMPORTANT to every little one of us! This understanding has changed my life!
Here’s the link to Donna Schwenk’s site, CULTURED FOOD LIFE. She is a fabulous resource! I am so happy to point you to her treasure chest!