To kick off the New Year I thought I’d share a magic tool I really loved using over the summer holidays.
It’s so economical and easy to make at home, tasty and convenient to use and it helped me steer clear of too many sugar-laden foods over the holidays!
We’re only delightfully human… so to savour and enjoy our food on holidays is just part of the fun!
It’s when the enjoyment goes a little crazy we can spiral into trouble and before we know it we’re craving the sweet treats more often and at certain times of the day.
If sugar was a good thing for our bodies I would say ‘go for it!’ But regular hits of sugar weaken us all round – it can contribute to a host of diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, problems with our heart, adrenal and weight issues. Sugar steals our energy, weakens our immune system and ages our cells. Now this magic tool simply cuts those cravings! I am talking fermented foods, namely Cultured Veggies.
Cultured Veggies have really hit the streets with a ‘kapow’ thanks to like-minded foodie friends around the ridges like Chef Pete Evans. There’s more info via telly, social media and popular recipe books now and many of us are learning about the benefits of Cultured Veggies.
And more importantly we’re all learning how easy they are to create!
And here at Your Digestion we LOVE them too!
So who could do with a side of Cultured Veggies on their plate?
Anyone with gut problems, bowel problems, joint and muscle pain, poor immunity, depression, food allergies, food cravings, sugar cravings, weight problems, headaches and fatigue – if the source of the problem is an out-of-whack inner ecosystem Cultured Veggies can help!
In clinic I see so many of my wonderful clients feeling dragged down with many of these symptoms. They’re so keen to get to the bottom of the problem and clear those symptoms and it’s my mission to help them achieve that.
So I share with them my experience - where there’s nagging symptoms there’s most likely, an imbalanced inner ecosystem with too much ‘bad biome’ ruling the roost. To reduce or even eliminate these symptoms we need to kick out the bad biome and get the good gut biome re-established.
Now there are a few ways we can do this – of course there’s our famous fermented drinks you may have already heard me rave about…but a another great food-based source of good gut biome is…you guessed it... Cultured Veggies!
My clients love them and once they’re in the swing of adding them to a meal or as a snack there’s simply no stopping that good biome from digesting, breaking down and helping us absorb our food and get rid of toxins. As I mentioned earlier, when the good gut biome is back in the swing, those nagging symptoms can be reduced or simply eliminated.
So what are Cultured Veggies?
Think of sauerkraut.
Cultured Veggies are lightly ‘pickled’ veggies, like the sauerkraut in jars we see on the supermarket shelves.
There is one big difference!
Supermarket sauerkraut doesn’t give us our good gut biome as it’s killed off during the pasteurisation process.
Cultured Veggies on the other hand has stacks of good gut biome due to the different way they are made.
Aren’t we lucky Cultured Veggies, packed with these ‘good guys’ are easy to make at home!
I shall give a simple ‘how to’ lesson later on but essentially when we end up with a jar of Cultured Veggies we have a tasty ‘magic tool’ to help us digest and absorb any meal - soft, delicious, lightly pickled veggies ready to go from the jar and easy to store. They last at least eight months in the fridge unopened.
So what do Cultured Veggies do for us?
Here are three big reasons;
1. Cultured Veggies help us ABSORB our good food by loading us up with GOOD BIOME and ENZYMES.
2. Cultured Veggies are ‘pre-digested’ – so the good biome already in the culturing process has already broken down the natural sugars and starches in the veggies, so they end up super easy to absorb. And with the bonus supply of enzymes in Cultured Veggies, anything else we eat with them is also so much easier for us to absorb!
Cultured Veggies are packed with VITAMINS.
With so many nutritionally ‘dead’ foods and synthetic vitamins on the market it’s so important to have a 100% natural source of vitamins our body can easily use, to get rid of toxins, spark up our cells and strengthen our immunity. Raw Cultured Veggies are also a fantastic source of the hard to obtain but vital Vitamin K. For more info on Cultured Veggies and Vitamin K, check out an interesting article we have recently posted on Facebook with a big thanks to the author Mercola! https://www.facebook.com/YourDigestion
3. Cultured Veggies ALKALISE our system.
If we are slightly alkaline as opposed to acidic – we are more likely to fight off infections, viruses and prevent many common ailments and diseases.
So how do I make Cultured Veggies?
It’s so simple – really!
Here’s a quick basic intro – shred your choice of veggies (e.g. carrot, cabbage, ginger, kale) combine in a bowl after blending some in water, pack into an airtight container (glass or stainless steel) and let them sit for at least 3 days at a warm temperature range!
Cultured Veggies can be made without any extra help but we do recommend using the Body Ecology’s Culture Starter to the mix to ensure a hardy strain of the good biome. Many of my clients prefer to use the Culture Starter. For more information click here.
And for full instructions grab a copy of the Body Ecology Diet Book!
Here’s a tasty summer recipe to try!
Cucumber, Wakame, Red Capsicum Salad with Cultured Veggies
- 1/4 C wakame
- 4 large cucumbers, peeled and very thinly sliced
- 2 tsp. herbamare or celtic sea salt
- 1 large red capsicum, diced
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1/3 C raw organic apple cider vinegar (with the ‘mother’)
- 2 Tbsp. organic virgin coconut oil
- Pinch of pepper
- Cultured vegetables
- Soak wakame for 15min, in enough water to cover.
- Sprinkle herbamare or sea salt on cucumbers and let set for several minutes to release the juices.
- Remove stem from soaking wakame and discard soaking water.
- Chop wakame and add to cucumbers.
- Add diced capsicum and red onion to cucumbers and wakame.
- Toss in vinegar, oil and pepper.
- Add a dollop of cultured vegetables and ENJOY!
Have fun with Cultured Veggies – they’re so versatile! Toss through salads, add them as a side or garnish to any starch or protein meal, blend into dips or wrap up in a sheet of nori! At least half a cup a day of Cultured Veggies is a great place to start. Just remember not to heat Cultured Veggies as it destroys the good biome.
So just imagine how it would feel to….
- be clear-minded and comfortable after your midday meal, (no siesta required).
- maintain your energy through the traditional mid-arvo slump, (power through those late afternoon tasks).
- control your food cravings for sugar and carbs (walk right past those chocolate bars with ease).
- have a strong immune system (less sick days!) and…
- have a few extra dollars in the bank by not having to buy synthetic probiotic powders or capsules.
It’s all possible with Cultured Veggies on your plate.
Happy 2015 and look forward to catching up soon.
Remember it takes good guts, to gain great health!