When I was in school at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in NYC, I learned something that absolutely floored me. It was what Louis Pasteur, the scientist who influenced everything about the current food system, said on his deathbed:
“Bernard was right…the pathogen is nothing; the terrain is everything.”
Damn. Pasteur invented pasteurization and shifted worldwide understanding of what makes people sick, and here he was, recounting his life’s work. (Bernard was his contemporary who argued for a healthy biological terrain—we’ll get into that more below.)
Before Pasteur, we didn’t know bacteria existed. When people got food poisoning they were treated by extreme measures such as bloodletting. Yup–let the evil spirits out.
This was not that long ago. Less than 150 years is a mere blip in the 10,000 year history of food cultivation.
Pasteur contributed a lot to our world, but his method for dealing with bacteria using heat kills off both the good and the bad, and the practice has drastically altered our food system and our bodies. The process uses heat high enough to damage the food’s nutrient availability, enzymes, and natural antibacterial properties, but that temperature is not high enough to kill typhoid, E. coli, TB, or Salmonella. (Dr Ghislaine Lanctôt, The Medical Mafia)
I’m not trying to *dis* Pasteur. He was the forerunner to the work I do now. Like me, he was a seeker of knowledge who set out to fix a problem that was affecting the entire world.
‘The terrain is everything’ means that harmful bacteria can’t survive in a healthy gut. If you don’t have the right probiotics your terrain is shot. This is why some people eat super healthy and still have health problems stemming from poor digestion, and live in a state of constant exhaustion.
It’s now clear that the terrain is the key to everything else. It’s not the only component to being healthy, but it is absolutely the foundation.
So how do you create a healthy terrain? When I found the answer to this question it became the seat of my personal theory of healing. Creating a healthy biological terrain is a new methodology of healing.
I also jumped for joy. That understanding led me from getting sick 4-6 times a year to getting sick only once every 4-6 years.
Are you the kind of person who LOVES making food and being in the kitchen and the concept of using food as medicine ignites sparks for you? I’ve got a free training coming up–Sign up and we’ll send the first one over shortly!
Register for the Healing With Fermented Foods Video Series.
It’s designed to give you tools to improve your health, the health of other people, and revolutionize your local food system. Enjoy!
Comment below to let me know your epiphanies…
My dear friend, Robyn Youkalis and I combined forces and created a delicious new recipe that totally blew our minds.
Check out this amazing recipe for Tempeh-Reuben Salad and comment below the video to let us know what you think!!!
Watch here and comment below the video!
I am over-the-top excited about this round of Gut Rebuilding!
Yes, more people signed up than ever before.
Yes, those people have been experiencing shifts RIGHT NOW, in the middle of the program.
I have to say that watching people heal their guts in such a short time is one of my absolute favorite parts in a lot of favorite parts.
But the real zinger? The part that I’m bursting with a mix of pride and borderline Just. Damn. Floored. by?
My father, Tom Bock, is doing Gut Rebuilding.
And? He’s my biggest fan. Sure, the whole proud papa paternal factor has something to do about it…but check this out:
Daddy Bock is diabetic. Has been for decades. The docs have had him on a whole cocktail of medications to manage, and he’s struggled with his blood pressure, blood sugar, and weight gain for years (actually for much longer than when he was first diagnosed).
Since starting Gut Rebuilding, he’s taking one third of his diabetes medications and has discontinued his hypertension meds – in just a few weeks of following my program.
He’s lost 13 pounds.
He’s cutting off the end of his belt and punching new holes in them to make them fit.
He’s had noticeable attitude changes and is feeling more positive than ever.
I just got back from seven weeks spent visiting my family in Tennessee because my outrageously wonderful sister just had this genius gorgeous baby—
The most hilarious thing about all this is that my father couldn’t stop following me and my sister around with his camera. Seriously, I had to tell him to stop! (And then he was still taking just as many photos but just trying to be sly about it!)
He is happier than I have ever seen him.
This here? The goods…
I also want to announce that I’ve got something special coming up here in the next few weeks. I’m doing a live webinar training call, free of charge, and I want YOU to be there!
It’s called “End Your Digestive Woes: 3 Steps to Rebuild Your Gut & Boost Your Energy Simultaneously,”. Mark your calendar for Thursday, July 3rd at 3pm PT/6pm ET to listen LIVE.
Keep your eyeballs open! It’s gonna be hot!
PS – Want to learn how you could start experiencing what my Dad did? Gut Rebuilding is open for registration.
Share and post your comments below…
My friend and colleague Pedram Shojai runs the website well.org and asked if I would be on his show! Of course I said Ha-aaay!
This is a big deal! This is cause for celebration!
If you don’t know who Pedram is, you need to! He’s 100% incredible.
For starters, he is a brilliant doctor of Oriental Medicine.
He also made the acclaimed documentary Vitality, which I can’t recommend highly enough.
Pedram invests all his resources getting super smart people on video and showcasing their unique contributions that make the world a healthier place. This is a truly noble way that he’s devoted to improving the world. You must check him out!
In the video we did together I go through the exact steps to make the healthiest, most gut rebuilding sauerkraut. Head on over there to see a quick video of me demonstrating my chops (and my chopping skills!)
You’ll get to see the different stages of sauerkraut and hear about the gut rebuilding benefits of this truly super food. Learn the traditional spices, as well as a little known ingredient that adds a boatload of immune boosting probiotics to every bite of kraut!
AND. . .
If that wasn’t exciting enough, on June 18th I am going to be on his live podcast, The Health Bridge, with his co-host, Dr. Sara Gottfried, the Harvard-trained MD with 20+ years of experience and the author of the forthcoming book, The Hormone Cure.
You HAVE to check out this podcast, ya’ll! You can even make comments live online if you show up at 11am PT (2pm ET).
P.S. Don’t forget to check out me sharing my award winning recipe:
P.P.S. You can catch the Vitality trailer here:
P.P.P.S. Please comment under the video letting us know you watched! Even a quick ‘thanks’ is appreciated.
Integrity is one of my favorite words. To me it means your thoughts lining up with your actions.
I’m an observer.
I’m a listener.
I watch your words and see if they line up with your actions.
I trust bodies.
I read bodies.
The way you carry yourself, where you store fat, how you hold your limbs, the lines, stretch marks, your eyes, the muscles – they all ended up there from a story. Those stories started as thoughts and beliefs. I know what you think and what you believe about yourself when I look at you.
It sometimes feels like I’m psychic. But it’s not that at all. It is all there. Visible. It makes logical sense. It’s undeniable. We are our own stories. Healing is about processing the old stories until they end. Healing is about changing your beliefs and thoughts so your emotions can flow freely through you.
Now how will you let go of the stories and beliefs that are making you sick, pulling on your body, keeping you in pain, and worst of all – keeping you from experiencing the brightest best you possible?
I’m going to get radical here for a minute. Hold onto your horses, but consider letting go of what you already know and hear me out.
1. (especially of change or action) relating to or affecting the fundamental nature of something; far-reaching or thorough.
“a radical overhaul of the existing regulatory framework”
2. of or going to the root or origin.
contributed by http://www.pinterest.com/pin/157274211959984207/
What led me to do the work I do?
It’s because I have a fundamental belief that the food system is broken. A hefty claim, a bold assertion—I know.
And what led me to believe—to know with all my being—that the food system was broken?
It was because my own body was destroyed after decades of eating even a marginally “healthy” modern American diet. In order to fix my body, I had to examine the source of my problems. I had to get radical—down to the root.
In doing so I discovered some huge, capital ’T’ Truths that weren’t so pretty. In fact, I denied them for as long as I could stand because they challenged everything I knew and thought about myself, how healthy I believed myself to be, how my mom fed me, and even what everyone around me took for granted.
These new ideas weren’t widely accepted.
The thing that floors me the most about the food system is completely absurd, and I mean this in the looniest, most nonsensical kind of way. (As opposed to some avant guard art that pushes the status quo.) I’m talking about how the food system is straight up bonkers here.
The #1 thing that needs to shift to have a healthier society and a non-busted food system? The thing that if we fix, EVERYONE gets healthier?
It’s simply this:
Focus on getting the right nutrients.
What do people focus on instead?
Cheap fuel and fillers.
The price people pay for just filling their bellies so they stop growling is enormous. They’re missing the biggest opportunity to supercharge their nutritional content with solid, beneficial gut flora.
How, you ask? With fermented foods.
We want this! We need this boomin’ bellyful of healthy bacteria most of all. A healthy gut flora will help digest and extract more nutrients from food.
This is where we need to be focusing—not on trying to get through lunchtime as fast as we can so we can go back to work, but on truly nourishing our bodies. If that’s the priority, then everything else is…well, ok—maybe this isn’t the best metaphor—but everything else is gravy.
The reason people have to work so hard right now to figure out what they need to eat for their body is because the food system is broken. People are (still) being told to eat in a way that doesn’t work.
So rather than get all weepy and just curl up on the couch with gluten-free microwavable TV dinner, here’s the BEST thing we can do about this busted food system that we’ve inherited. (Yes, find solace in the fact that we didn’t make it, but we have a choice over what to do with it.)
We need to get as educated as possible about how humans eat, what makes us healthy, and what we need in our lives to feel good.
Here’s the other capital ’T’ Truth that knocked me over. It was when I realized—midway through my winding road to what’s now exceptional health—that no one was going to save me.
And the hard-knock truth when I started my health coaching practice? I can’t save anyone else either. But here’s what I could do.
I could learn how to be healthy. I also saw an opportunity to learn how to help other people be healthy. My friend Stella likes to call this being a ‘Classy Ambassador.’ It’s when you lead by example in so graceful and non-pushy a way that other people can’t help but be intrigued with what you’re up to.
At first it appeared that I stumbled into this leadership discovery, but I was clear-headed enough that I saw an opportunity to become a leader in this field, both on a small and large scale. I’m not saying my path is for everyone. But when I realized that:
1) I could heal my own broken body
2) I could teach other people they steps I took to heal their broken bodies
3) that with each broken body healed, one brick of the broken food system was dismantled
I couldn’t see doing it any other way.
Why? Because there’s grandparents in nursing homes, children in schools, people in hospitals who are the most negatively affected by this faulty food system we’ve inherited. Ironically, they’re the people that need nutrition the MOST.
So I write this knowing that I’m more than just a little bit of an upstart. I write this knowing that I might alienate some people who disagree, or who aren’t ready to hear what I’m saying, or who just don’t like me for what ever reason. I HAD to make a decision to be okay with that. Because to be radical means that you are willing to stand by your beliefs, no matter how it affects your popularity.
Whatever you believe at your core, I hope you’re willing to choose your Truth over the status quo. I hope that when it comes down to living with integrity that you’re willing to shift your whole previous belief system, if that’s what it takes. I hope that you’re even ready to push aside what your family taught you in the past or what they think now.
This is how change happens. This is how we fix the food system and learn how to nourish our bodies first, and up next, the world.
You have at your disposal one of the best methods for self to know how your gut is doing. People are always asking me which tests they should take to find out how their intestinal bacteria are faring. Even though tests are useful in some situations, the most important skill set you can develop is daily self-diagnosis. This means paying attention to your skin, tongue, eyes, and digestion.
The most important signal of your health is being swept away everyday down those darned automatic flush toilets. Too bad, tragically sad! You can’t know how your body is doing if you don’t get the chance to study. (The other annoying thing about those toilets is they flush like 6 times before you even sit down!)
Every time you drop your kids off at the pool, look at what you left behind.
Here are some basic guidelines for telling if your gut is f***ed or filled with the friendly flora and fauna that keeps you feeling good.
You should go 1-2 times per day, no less.
Your BM should be between a 3 and 5 on the Bristol Stool Chart.
A healthy deuce should be torpedo-shaped and easy to pass. A minute or two tops. No floating, no little deer pellets – you aren’t a kibble factory – time to drink more delicious H-2-O. You want your stool to be Crayola-brown color. Little thin poops could be an indication of serious health problem. Soft serve is an indication of lactose intolerance, artificial sweeteners (sorbitol and Splenda) doing their evil magic in your body, or a reaction to fructose or gluten.
Check out Dr. Mercola’s explanation of all the different factors that influence your bowels. What a darling man for laying it all out for everybody else!
In Gut Rebuilding we fondly call the highest achievement in poopdom, the ‘Golden Doodle’. This number two has a clean break – meaning there is a clean wipe, and the entire elimination is under a minute. No straining, no rocking back and forth, no groaning or grunting, no magazine-reading.
The benefits of healthy poops like this are that you have less digestive problems and no struggle with hemorrhoids because there is no straining.
When you eat new foods, try new supplements, and take better care of yourself – you should see this reflected in your feces. Take a look. Gauge your progress. I strongly recommend that you limit the amount of new supplements you start taking at once in order to understand how each thing is affecting you.
Within two weeks of my Gut Rebuilding program, most of my clients experience a positive change in their number twos. They notice it’s more digested. This is due to the increased bacteria in their guts digesting their food more fully. The good gut bugs are happy, you’re happy. Win-win.
I help my clients achieve is the Golden Doodle through Gut Rebuilding. Speaking of – I have a whole series of videos that talks all about this. Check out the Gut Rebuilding Video Series here.
For a Fermentationist one of the highest achievements is getting an award for your delicate victuals.
This year, OlyKraut won the Good Food award for not one, but two flavors. The last time we won the good food award was back in 2012. But the reason I’m so proud is because my recipe won.
When we started the company a long long time ago in 2008 we each brought our very own recipes and flavors to the table. We contributed our best hits and let the public give us their precious feedback about what they liked. Sea Vegetable was one of my favorite contributions. I love the thyroid-protecting benefits of sea vegetables. I love the taste of garlic and onion mixed with the spicy of jalapeño in just the right proportions.
Today is a good day. I’m a proud mama of a baby sauerkraut that has made a name for itself in this world. I love you Sea Vegetable. (In secret I call it Mermaid Kraut.)
What blows my mind is our continue reach towards the goal of growing the local food system. In 2009 we ordered 1400 pounds of local product in which to make our product. Last year that number towered at an epic 30,000 pounds! ?Those produce purchases go back into our community and recycle money through local channels making money more potent.
Keep eatin’ kraut and rebuildin’ your gut!
How to make bone broth:
When doing some research on the internet looking for a simple bone broth recipe, I was unable to find anything but soup stock recipes! Even my three favorite posts on this topic only had recipes for stock. They are written by my friends and colleagues. This one by Jordan and Steve at SCD Lifestyle. This one by Katie at Wellness Mama. And this one by Sally at Nourishing Traditions.
Because this is for those who need that extra nourishment while doing my Probiotic Power Cleanse, I want to make sure the recipe is simple and easy.
This is how I make it:
You will need about 2 pounds of bones, you can use beef or chicken bones.
First, I parbroil the bones. I learned this from making Pho, a delicious Vietnamese soup that is often eaten for breakfast.
“When you simmer bones they release “scum” or impurities. If you don’t get rid of this, you’ll be stuck with a cloudy broth. Not good. We like our Pho to be as clear and clean as possible, so we add an extra step. Add the bones to a large stockpot, cover with cold water then bring to a boil. Boil for a few minutes then throw the water and bones into a strainer. Discard the water then rinse the bones to get rid of all the impurities. Also, make sure you give the pot a rinse, too — there will be scum on the bottom and sides of the pot.” This excerpt is from an awesome Pho recipe.
After parboiling the bones, I place the bones in a large stock pot (or electric crock pot if you’re worried about sleeping with the stove on) and fill the pot to the top with water. When I interviewed Sally Fallon-Morrel during the Gut Rebuilding Experts Telesummit, she said that what I was making was more of a ‘bone tea’ since it contains more water. For a more strong and concentrated bone broth reduce the water to half way to the top or fill the pot with bones and cover with water. I recommend starting with the bone tea and working your way up.
Next bring to a boil and reduce to a low simmer for 24-48 hours. After about 8 hours of simmering I sometimes add 2 tablespoons of vinegar, but I recommend leaving this step out during the Probiotic Power Cleanse.
You can ladle the soup directly out of the pot while it is simmering. You can also pour everything through a strainer and store in glass jars in the fridge. You may freeze your bone broth, but be careful, when I’ve done this in mason jars they break, even when I leave enough room.
My favorite things to do with broth:
- To each mug of bone broth you drink add a pinch of salt, a teaspoon of miso, or my favorite, a shot of sauerkraut brine. Drink it for breakfast in the morning. Yum!
- Use it as a base for any kind of soup you create.
- Replace bone broth for the water you normally cook your grains with.
- Pour it on squash and add smoked alder sea salt. Super yum!
When I drink bone broth I’m super careful to remove the fat. Otherwise I end up eating more fat than my body can process. Be cautious of the bone broth baby fat syndrome. Many people I know get on the bone broth bandwagon and add extra padding quickly.
Use the fat to sauté your onions and greens. Excellent for dairy-free folks as a butter replacement!
I danced at this amazing even called the “dance co-op”. Live DJ, no talking, and fifty barefooted sweaty people dancing their hearts out for 2 hours. Before leaving the house I was totally paranoid about getting sick. Everyone and their brother is getting sick this season. Even my friends who never get sick are getting laid out by this flu going around. I refuse to be one of those people. I’m headed to Tampa, Florida this week and don’t want to miss out on the amazing mastermind I’m attending – much less miss the sun and warmth.
So I took all my precautions and had my emergency precautions handy to use if needed. Here’s what I did.
- I ate kimchi and sauerkraut. I ate about 1/2 cup of kimchi before heading out the dance. Now I knew that my breath might offend, but thankfully there is no talking at the dance so there’s no way anyone would even know. Kimchi has shown to be effective against the avian flu and other influenza outbreaks. If you are new to kimchi or sauerkraut, you might want to start with just a couple forkfuls and work your way up to larger amounts over the course of a week. Otherwise you’ll experience gas and bloating.
- I took a day off. Yes, I did. It was great. The next day I was feeling pretty run down so I took the day off and laid around taking naps. I took three 45-minute naps. Listening to your body when you are tired takes practice and skill. Otherwise it’s too easy to turn to coffee or stimulants to get through the rest of the day. This is the worst idea during cold and flu season because the extra work when you really just need rest can be the straw that breaks the camels back.
- I fasted for a day. I drank only green juice for 24 hours to help my body rest up and catch up with whatever was going on inside. Sometimes I get stronger food cravings right before I get sick. There are cravings rather than my body asking nicely for something. The difference is subtle if you haven’t yet learned to listen to your body. You can learn how to do that in my upcoming group cleanse. Let’s think about what’s actually happening when you have a cold or the flu. You are snotty, runny, sore, tired, and fuzzy headed. You may have a fever. These are all ways that your body is working to not just kill off the invading bacteria or virus, but also to quickly remove toxins from the system that are building up from the microbe invasion. If you think of the cold or flu as your body forcing a cleanse then it will help you better understand how to not get sick. Snot is a toxin superhighway. Your body is eliminating acidic byproducts through mucus. Consider cleansing regularly as a way to keep your toxic load lighter. #juicefastforaday
- I take an extra probiotic right before bed. This helps boost immunity and kill off any organisms that are trying to proliferate in the gut. Say you ate tons of sugar recently and have been stressed out and maybe even drinking coffee. You are feeding the yeast and sugar-loving bacteria and they are peeing and pooping in your bloodstream. Yep. Gross. And your body will try to get that out. Give yourself a hand.
- I sleep in. Rest, rest, and more rest. I can’t say it enough. It makes a big difference whether you get sick or not. When you are resting your stress hormones decrease which is great for your immune system and intestinal bacteria.
- I sweat. Since getting the cold or flu is basically creating a toxin superhighway, you can help your body get all the excess toxins out by opening your channels of elimination. Your skin is your largest organ and when you sweat you allow certain toxins to bypass the liver altogether. (Your liver is clapping just hearing this news).
When I was suffering from low immunity years ago, I would start taking all kinds of supplements to help me not get sick. I would take echinacea, elderberry, oregano oil, probiotics, drink green juice and basically overdo it. My bioterrain was shot. There was no way to avoid getting sick when my body was a garden of bad bacteria and yeasts. I was feeding it sugar and other acid-forming foods constantly because my cravings were so strong. I was lacking in the precious nutrients that feed probiotics.
Most people are still thinking in terms of the outdated paradigm called ‘the germ theory’. This theory is based of Louis Pasteur’s idea that you catch a cold. A germ flies up your nose and you get sick. He came up with this theory sometime around 1866.
This theory has led to many pharmaceuticals, antibiotics, chemo, and even food pasteurization. Preserve food by killing all organisms in it and keep it sterile to prevent spoilage. Allow the food to sit on the shelves for eons without going bad.
This is the same theory that led to the use of hand sanitizers, which have now been proven to increase the risk of allergies in children.
The truth is, your body is a community of organisms that makeup your immune system. It is not just your white blood cells that are protecting you – it’s also the intestinal bacteria that are preventing you from getting sick. They have the ability to fight off invaders with their own natural antibiotics (called bacteriocins).
This is the theory of bioterrain. In fact, when Louis Pasteur was on his deathbed, he said, “I was wrong. The microbe is nothing. The terrain is everything.” Can you say that a little louder, please?
When it comes to your body and your desire to get happy friendly bacteria living and thriving there it has everything to do with your bioterrain.
If your bioterrain and friendly bacteria are wiped out, then what? You are more susceptible to sickness. You will catch that cold or flu going around because your protective bacterial immune system is down.
When your intestinal bacteria are wiped out, new critters have taken up residence. And they are living in your gut eating and excreting. Your body is filtering all their excretions.
And if you fall into a slump and start eating more sugar than normal or go to a party and have too much cake and drink you start feeding some of the bad bacteria. No! Guess what happens then? You end up feeling sluggish and funky the next day (maybe even depressed) as your body is inundated with the excess toxins that are being produced from within your gut. Ew.
Have you ever noticed when you feel slightly run down and you push through it or drink coffee and then the next day you start to notice that you are coming down with something? Your body was telling you it was tired for a reason. And if you ignore that and add even more work for your body to do, you are making yourself more susceptible to illness.
If you feel a cold coming on, try my tips. See how they work. And if your bioterrain is shot, you need to check out my Gut Rebuilding program to boost your immunity, digestion, and energy levels.