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Iconic Health: Lacto-Fremented Vegetables

There has been a lot of talk recently about probiotics and your health. Recent medical research is proving how important your gut heath, or micro-biome, is to your overall health. Did you know that your intestines have a nerve lining that has just as many nerves in it, if not more, then your brain? That's where that saying "listen to your gut" comes from. There is some serious truth to that expression. Having said all that, one way that we can uphold and maintain the health of our gut, or micro-biome, is to eat lacto-fermented vegetables. What are lacto-fermented vegetables? They are vegetables that have been fermented in a salt water brine, helping to produce B vitamins, vitamin C, and a number of strains of lactobacillus. Lactobacilli are benificial bacteria that help to break down food, aiding digestion and assimilation. Eating foods high in lactobacillus will help improve colonies of flora living in the gut, which will improve digestion, absorption and immunity, as well as helping with chronic skin conditions, yeast infections and seasonal allergies. All you need is a condiment-sized portion of some kind of fermented food added to your daily meals to reap these awesome benefits.


You can buy lacto-fermented foods at your local health food store, or Whole Foods, in the refrigerated section. These do tend to be on the pricey side. An alternative would be to make your own fermented vegetables. Check out this link to read how to make your own lacto-fermented sauerkraut!

Recently, I made my own pickles from cucumbers that I grew in my garden! Yummy!

I also made Beet Kvass, a naturally fermented traditional Russian beverage made with raw beets. This drink is very nurturing due to it's high vitamin and mineral content. It also helps aid in digestion. I like to sip on it while I'm cooking dinner. For me, its helped me to start to kick the habit of drinking wine while cooking. Click here for the recipe. The recipe calls for whey. To make whey, all you have to do is take plain yogurt that has lactobacillis bacteria in it, and stain it through a cheesecloth lined mesh strainer that's placed over a bowl for 12-24 hours. I leave mine on the counter, covered with a towel. The liquid in the bowl is the whey. The left over yogurt is how they make greek yogurt! Very edible and healthy!


Yours in health,

Renee Koczkodan

Holistic Health Coach

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