All posts tagged: gut

Delicious fermented beets

I’m enjoying the fruits of my labor, pickled beets from the first episode of Fermentation Fun. They are a totally delicious accompaniment to my lunch of lamb stew. It was so delightful to present these simple ferments at People’s Food Coop last month. For those of you who missed the class or lost the recipes, read on. Both pickled beets and beet kvass allow you to enjoy and easily digest the many benefits of beets. These include nutrients such as iron, potassium, fiber, folate and antioxidants. Then there is boron which helps build bones, elevates, testosterone and improves blood flow, contributing to the use of beets as an aphrodisiac. Not to forget, sodium nitrate which is credited with allowing you to exercise for 15% longer and helping some British athletes win in the 2012 Olympics, according to Jo Robins in Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health These lacto fermented foods will provide your gut lining with a fresh batch of live, digestion enhancing bacteria. Eat fermented foods with every meal! …

What’s the big deal about eating Organic?

I have been eating organically grown food for most of my life. In the 80’s Austria was the first country to have organic certification and since my parents were interested in eating natural food they quickly sought out the little health food stores, Bioladen, in Vienna. When I moved to Portland for college I became a member at People’s Food Coop. By volunteering a few hours a month there I received a hearty discount and have always done most of my grocery shopping there since. I never thought about how much more expensive organic food is. It was real food and it just costs as much as it does. But for many people buying organic is on the other side of the big hurdle called “too expensive” So why buy organic? Because it is better for your body and the environment. Here are a few quotes from Joshua Rosenthal’s book Integrative Nutrition: Feed your Hunger for Health and Happiness: Fresh, organic produce contains more vitamins, minerals, enzymes and other micronutrients than intensively farmed produce. According …

Food Journal, 6.20

6:45 woke up, almost exactly eight hours after I turned off the light. Feeling good and refreshed. 8:15 Breakfast: smoked salmon, avocado, cucumber, jicama, spinach. 2 cups broth, 3 oz kombucha. 9:00 nice, big type 4 bowel movement. Poop update : I looked back over the past few weeks. Mostly my bowel movements where still type 1 (small, hard balls) but several times a day. But there have been a number of type 4 (large, well formed) stools. The fist one on 6.5 then 6 days later, then 5 days later, then 3 days later. This is a huge improvement. In the past year I had maybe one of those a month. And I haven’t taken any psyllium or cascara in quite a while now. Seems like dandelion and burdock and whatever shifted in me energetically is working. Letting go is happening, but not how I imagined. I am letting go of some hard feelings about things that happened in the past few years, but more importantly I am letting go of a lot of …

Food journal 6.18

It’s the third week of the bootcamp challenge. This week were only eating meat and veggies. No dairy, no nuts or fruit in addition to avoiding grains and sugar. Paleo to the fullest. I’m adding in a lot of bone broth to use this as an opportunity to rebuild my gut flora. Though the last few days my bowel movements have been so regular I’ve actually been taking a break from Psyllium and Cascara. 5:05 up with the alarm, moving a little slow, but feeling good after 8 hours at home in my bed 5:30 1/2 carrot, 1 cup broth 6:00 bootcamp, abdominal workout. Lost 3 lbs over the last two weeks. 7:40 Breakfast: 2 lamb chorizo sausages, sautéed asparagus, cabbage, onion in coconut oil and kraut 8:30 a little more chorizo and veggies, breakfast was rushed before work and I just wasn’t quite satisfied 9:00 1 cup broth 11:00 Snack: rest of breakfast, celery and water 12:30 1 cup broth, finished second bottle of water 1:00 Lunch: Cajun Halibut with a pile of broccoli, …

Food Sensitivity induced abdominal swelling

This morning I woke up and my belly was noticeably flat. Just one day without any irritating foods can do that. Yesterday was totally grain and sugar free for me. It’s described as non gaseous abdominal swelling/ bloating and makes people look like they are pregnant. Do you, or someone you know sometimes have a big distended belly, one that comes and goes throughout the day and with eating? Well, it is likely caused by a reaction to an irritating food that makes all the lymphatic tissue in the digestive tract swell up. This type of bloating is different from abdominal fat and is not relieved by passing gas. But is most definitely relieved by removing the offending foods. As the bacteria in my gut get balanced out my whole being gets balanced out. The gut has more neural pathways than the brain, it is an aspect of our thinking. When it is inflamed and on high alert emergency mode, how might that make me feel? Tense, anxious, afraid and over time exhausted and depressed. …

Psyllium

Oh Psyllium, I have been taking you almost daily now for over a year and your smooth, gelatinous ways help keep my bowels moving. But for some reason I have resented you. I have held it against you that my bowels have this embarrassing habit of getting slow and dry and painful. I’m so sorry, you have been my savior, really, and I am deeply grateful for it. Today I look a little into who you are as a magical plant being, more than just a powder I buy at the co-op and ‘have’ to take. Psyllium is of the Genus Plantago, closely related to our average garden Plantain, Plantago lancelota and P. major. The seed husks contain a great amount of mucilage and when they are ground become a fine, tan powder that is strongly hydrophilic. Meaning that it absorbs water. Which helps to soften stool in constipation as well as firm up stool in mild cases of diarrhea. It is one of the most commonly used bulk laxatives in the US and is …

Digestion

I am re-colonizing my intestinal tract. Chicken broth, fermented foods, veg juices and leaving out the sugar and junk that feeds the unhealthy bacteria. They say our gut is almost like a second brain. It has so many nerve cells. As my gut cleanses I feel my mind clear too. Old, outdated thought patterns, the ones that say mean things about me, are slipping away. I don’t need that any more. No need to worry or be anxious so much. Replaced with new thoughts of the beauty all around and the joy in the sun. I find myself sitting, just sitting after a meal and smiling to myself as I digest a little. The urge to rush off and do a million things set aside for the moment. Nice.

Listening to my gut

I’m not going to tell anyone how to eat, unless they ask my advice, of course.  But I finally told myself and am following my own advice. I got to the point where my aching joints, delayed bowel movements, frequent gas and dry skin just got to be too much for me. So I eliminated sugar, gluten, legumes and most grains from my diet a week ago. I know those are the foods I’ve struggled to digest in the past. And wow, do I feel better. The joint inflammation and pain is almost totally gone. My bowel movements are softening and totally unexpectedly I feel warm, even when it was 57 deg in my home. I’m excited and inspired. Have been browsing some paleo blogs for recipes and checking out the Gaps diet for extra ideas such as drinking bone broth with my meals. On some intellectual, moral, spiritual and environmental levels I think being vegetarian would be better. But my gut doesn’t seem to think so at all and that’s who I’ll be living …