Lifestyle Changes That Will Strengthen Your Immune System - Part 1
Over the next few weeks, I’m going to share with you three very important strategies you can incorporate into your everyday life. Each one will boost your immune system, but putting them all into play will change your world. And in these trying times, our immune system is the best defense we have. So let’s give it what it needs to do an optimal job!
We’ll start with the most important one and the one that will make the most drastic changes. Did you know that your gut microbiome comprises 70% of your immune system?
Adding probiotics in the form of cultured and fermented foods will greatly benefit your microbiome. Our gut (gastrointestinal tract) houses trillions of microbes, some good and some bad. The standard American diet (SAD), because of the processed, refined and artificial foods, has caused a great imbalance. This has led to a plethora of chronic illnesses and conditions, the main one being inflammation. Other culprits include Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Bad microbes are also detrimental to our mental state causing insomnia, depression and anxiety. Not only do probiotics decrease inflammation and other chronic diseases, they also improve your state of mind.
The three types of probiotics you need in your life are kefir, kombucha and cultured vegetables/fruit. I have been making these for over 6 years and the simplicity of each one never ceases to amaze me. There is nothing complicated and the results are worth it! The many health benefits include increased vitamins and beneficial bacteria, diversity of microbes, and enzymes that aid digestion.
To make kefir you will need a quart jar, milk and milk kefir grains with instructions.
Fun fact: In ancient times, kefir grains were treated as wealth because of their healing properties.
For kombucha you will need a gallon jar, green and black tea bags, sugar and a SCOBY with instructions.
The cultured vegetables/fruits are the most fun! Jar size will depend on the recipe. A culture starter (or whey from kefir) will be needed, as well as a food processor. There are so many recipes to choose from but some of my favorites are blueberry spinach kraut, bread and butter pickles, and carrot cake in a jar. You can also make fermented cranberries or garlic using only honey!
I hope you enjoy this new adventure as much as I do! For kefir grains, SCOBY, culture starter or any needed supplies, plus hundreds of recipes, visit culturedfoodlife.com.
There are many different kombuchas, kefirs and an increasing variety of cultured kraut and kimchi that can be bought in stores. The kefir will not have as many beneficial strains of bacteria due to pasteurization, but If you are unable to make your own, it’s the next best thing!
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