Guts & Glory #43

What’s A Normal Amount to Get a Cold or Flu?

I hear conversations that drive me to the brink of insanity.

Things like, “I can’t go make it tonight. I’m sick,” followed by a sympathetic “Oh yeah, It’s really going around…” or “Yeah, it’s winter so everyone has the flu.”

For the record:

Getting sick every winter is not normal. Getting sick four times a year is not normal. In fact, getting sick every year is also (you guessed it) not normal.

Getting a cold every couple of months is as common these days as the bubonic plague was in the 1300s.

That doesn’t make it normal. It makes it pandemic.

When you’re healthy, meaning you’ve built up your good immune system from your gut and otherwise learned how to set up your life, you only get sick every few YEARS.

Another myth is that the culprit of all the world’s colds and flus is germs.

Nope. On this week’s Guts & Glory podcast I’m giving out the one thing that helped me change the amount I get sick more than anything else.

Watch the quickie video—or read the transcript—here that will save you hours laid up with your box of tissues and your teddy bear(s) and get ready for your new awesome life where you laugh in the face of germs…

Comment below—share your experience so we can all learn!

What’s one thing you can change today, or this week to get less stress? Share on the blog so we can all de-stress just a little bit more!

 


 

TRANSCRIPTION
Hello everyone, I’m Summer Bock, this is Guts and Glory.

We’ll talk a little bit about stress levels and getting sick. It is not normal to get sick every season. It’s not normal to get sick every year. It’s not actually normal to be getting sick as much as people get sick. It drives me crazy that people make so many excuses about why they’re sick. I want you to build a strong resilient body to where you can have a night where you drink or you can have a little bitty sugar binge or you can do whatever and it doesn’t knock you down. It doesn’t take you out.

The way that you do that, besides the fermented vegetables and building up your good immune system from your gut, that’s one of the basis for this. You have to deal with your stress. You are tolerating more stress than you ever were designed to. You need to learn how to set up your life, set up your food, set up your everything, your sleep schedule, your exercise, everything, to where you are able to lower your stress. Just think for a moment what it would be like to lower your stress 50% of what it is right now, 50%. How different would your life be? How would you feel? Do you have access in your day-to-day life to people who can help lower your stress rather than raise it?

I want you guys to untrain the stress response that you have been trained to have. I want you to start untraining your habit to have stress in your life because that is the number one thing that is totally affecting and killing your gut when it comes to getting sick and your immune system.

Get out of the stress pocket, figure out what it takes to, just even this week, reduce it by even a small amount. What’s one thing you can change today, or this week to get less stress? Start taking inventory of your whole life. If you really want to hit this hard and go super deep and actually handle stress once and for all, it’s going to help you on a lot of levels. This is where you start to see people’s chronic illnesses be able to go away. This is where you start to see people’s weight get normal. They start to enjoy life and have fun. This is when you deal with stress but that’s what you get.

Think about this in the deeper dive version of stress. I want you to take this full inventory of your life, pull out a sheet of paper, start making a list of everything in your life that stresses you out. Just put little boxes next to each one and start checking them off. If it feels out of your control, if you feel powerless to it, those are the things that you have to reach out and get more support and start asking people how you’re going to get out of this pocket you’re in. That’s the stress pocket, the place where you are stuck and you have no idea how to get out of it. You know what? Here’s the big secret, you can’t do it alone. You can’t. You got to get help.

Alright everyone, I hope that this tip of the day for Guts and Glory is useful for you. If so, let me know. I would love to hear down below, what stresses you out? What are the things that you can handle this week or today to help decrease stress in your life? Now, for those of you who are feeling bold today, I want you to write down what are the things in your life that you feel completely powerless and unable to change or make a dent it in terms of your stress. Let me know.

Alright everyone, this is Summer Bock. I’m signing out.

Guts & Glory #42

The Best Time of Day For Probiotics

There are many nuances to getting the most out of all your probiotics efforts. Afterall, doesn’t everyone want to have the most probiotically packed body in all the land?

You need to know which form to take (as a supplement vs. raw ferments), how much, and when to take them (with meals or in between).

And then there’s this tricky question:

Tracy says, “I love making my own Kraut and eating it, but in my learning as a nutritionist, I learned the best time to take a probiotic is just before bed. What do you think of this and would it be just as effective to eat a couple of tablespoons before bed? I’d be really interested in your insight.”

Great question. First and foremost I would say no, don’t eat sauerkraut before bed.

But you might be surprised at WHY I don’t recommend this. Watch the video or read the transcript on the blog to find out!

This week’s Guts & Glory answers this AND has some great advice on how to lower your body’s acidity.

Watch the Guts & Glory podcast to learn:

  • What time of day is best for getting your probiotic fix
  • In a capsule or on a fork? The best method to take your probiotic
  • Best practice—taking probiotics with meals or when your belly’s empty
  • Flushable evidence—the best sign that what you’re doing is working!

Comment below—share your experience so we can all learn!

Do you notice a difference in the time of day to take probiotics?

TRANSCRIPTION
Welcome everyone, I’m Summer Bock. This is Guts and Glory. We get a lot of questions and email, and I wanted to start answering those for you a little bit more formally. Here we have a question from Tracy.

Tracy says, “I love making my own Kraut and eating it, but in my learning as a nutritionist, I learned the best time to take a probiotic is just before bed. What do you think of this and would it be just as effective to eat a couple of tablespoons before bed? I’d be really interested in your insight.”

Tracy Bosnian, thank you so much for asking. This is a great question. First and foremost I would say no, don’t eat sauerkraut before bed.

The main reason is having that acidity in your mouth is not ideal, it’s bad for your teeth. You should really keep your meals to two or three meals a day, and you shouldn’t be eating or snacking in between. It’s not good for your mouth, it’s not good for the pH, and it will make different organisms grow in your mouth than what you want.

Really focus on eating two to three times a day, not eating in between, and that really means not eating right before bed. Instead I would recommend taking a probiotic before bed. I’ve found in my work in the Gut Rebuilding Program that there are two different ways to do it. You can take probiotics with meals and you can take probiotics away from meals.

It works depending on the person. I find that with all my clients in that program we try it both ways and see which one works better for you. You can tell if it’s working because you get closer to the Golden Doodle. Your digestion is running smoothly, you have the Golden Doodle and that’s how you’ll know that this is actually an effective tool for you.

Taking them with meals, my fave way to do that is through kimchi and sauerkraut or other fermented foods that are rich in probiotics. Then if you want to take it at night I recommend taking the probiotic pill itself.

Tracy, I hope that helps you in your endeavors as a nutritionist, and helps you advise your clients as well. Thank you so much for submitting your question. Everyone, this is Summer Bock signing out.

Guts & Glory #41: Should you use a starter culture to make sauerkraut?

Should you use a starter culture to make sauerkraut?

Sauerkraut can increase certain vitamins and contains essential microbes, but there is some controversy about whether using a starter culture increases vitamin K when you make kraut at home, or if starter culture is even necessary.

In fact, I don’t agree with Dr. Mercola on this one…

In today’s episode of Guts & Glory I’m going to explain why I don’t believe his claim, as well as why I ditch the starter culture for the flavor factor.


Find out if a starter culture can:

  • Make a tastier fermented vegetable product
  • Extend the life of your ferments in the fridge
  • Ruin your large batches of kraut!
  • Help you get you some very healthy probiotics that are fantastic for you

And learn why people with certain health conditions should DEFINITELY consider using a starter culture.

Comment below and weigh in!
Do you use a starter culture? Why or why not?

TRANSCRIPTION

Welcome everyone, I’m Summer Bock, and this is Guts and Glory.

I get a lot of questions and emails so we’re going to make it easier. I’m going to do these frequently asked question videos from time to time for you guys, so that you can get some answers to your great questions that you sent in.

This one is from Lucy Hewitt, and she says, “I saw in today’s email a recipe on sauerkraut that you don’t recommend using a starter culture, only the cabbage and salt. Why not? Even Dr. Mercola has talked about the huge benefits of starter culture. Not only will you get more volume and kinds of microbes you’re looking for, you’re also going to get the vitamin K2.”

Okay Lucy, this is a fantastic question, and it’s actually a really highly controversial topic in a lot of ways.

What I have found through all my research, and this includes looking up Dr. Mercola ingredients for his starter culture, and looking up any lab testing that he’s done on this. What I have found is that the labs, as well as the information about K2, his starter culture, there is no indication whatsoever that any K2 would deform in sauerkraut. Vitamin K2 is more often found in dairy ferments, and the probiotics present in sauerkraut are even in his culture, are not the kinds that are going to produce, or convert, vitamin K2. I don’t, honestly, believe his claim. I’m willing to be proven wrong, but he has not given any information that shows that that’s possible, as well as the fact that the research I uncovered shows that none of those pro-additives in his starter culture have the ability to even make K2. I’m a little confused about why he’s making that claim, to be honest with you, it’s very confusing.

Secondly, I wanted to just talk about why I don’t prefer a starter culture, just beside the vitamin K2 issue. That’s the fact that I find that you make a much tastier fermented vegetable product when you don’t use starter cultures. Starter cultures adds probiotics that are at the end result of the fermentation process, at the very end, there’s no need to add these at the beginning. It just messes with the whole flow.

It changes the taste, it makes it not last as long in fridge, and I just find that you’re going to have a much higher quality product if you do it the traditional way. There’s also something called back slopping where you take some of the grind from a previous batch, and you throw it into the new batch. Now, when I was working at my gourmet sauerkraut company, we tried doing that a few times, and the second that we stopped, we stopped having any of our batches of kraut go bad. We actually think it was contaminating it.

There are a couple times when I would recommend possibly using a starter culture. One is if you’re dealing with a salt intolerance issue where you can’t have salt for some sort of major health condition. This is very few health conditions, and in which case you want to probably have the addition of a starter culture to help make your product last longer, because it’s hard to make sauerkraut without salt, it just is. It doesn’t last more than a week, usually.

The second reason would be a dysbiosis in somebody, where they’re actually really reactive to probiotics. In my healing journey I’ve really struggled. I ate fermented foods for a long time as a part of my big journey to be recovered through healing my gut. It was a huge part of it, but then it was really bizarre, because I actually developed an intolerance where I was having histamine reactions, allergic reactions, when I would eat fermented foods and probiotics. I had to lay off for a while, until I was able to completely heal my gut, at which point I could bring them back in.

For people who are struggling with dysbiosis in a why where they’re having reactivity to sauerkraut, or other fermented veggies like kimchi, yeah, in that case a starter culture may work for you. I know that Donna Gates in the Body Ecology Diet, she make a starter culture that has a lot of Lactobacillus plantarum, which is suppose to have some help with keeping the histamine levels down. There you go, that’s kind of the only exceptions, but other than that, no, I don’t recommend a starter culture. I don’t think it tastes as good, I don’t think it makes as good of a product. This is very much recreating a little anaerobic environment, and letting nature take its course when we don’t add a starter culture.

In nature when there’s a forest fire, you basically destroy all the whole forest, right? What grows next? Wildflowers, weeds, and then shrubs, and then little bit bigger shrubs, and then the trees start growing. When the trees grow, and they get tall enough, they build a thick enough canopy all that other stuff from the previous successions actually die off.

This is exactly what happens when you’re making sauerkraut and fermented veggies. You actually start out with these very specific bacteria, like the Leuconostoc mesenteroides, that’s how I say it, some people say it differently, I know. That’s the first bacteria in the succession, and it comes along, and it starts growing, and proliferating, and it’s actually a little bit acid intolerant. The lower the pH goes, eventually it does off, and some of the other successions of bacteria come along and grow, and take that place, and then finally in the final result of sauerkraut, and fermented veggies, and kimchi, you have some very healthy probiotics that are fantastic for you. There was no need to add anything to the beginning for that to happen.

There you go, I hope that helps. Thanks again Lucy for your question. Alright everyone, this is Summer Bock signing out.

Guts & Glory #40: The Controversial Flu Shot & The All Natural Fermented Food Alternative with Summer

The Controversial Flu Shot & The All Natural Fermented Food Alternative. Plus, how to tell how strong your immune system is…

I wanted to chat with you for a second about my opinion on the flu shot. Yes. This is a big question. Here’s where I personally stand. Plus, read on to learn about how Kefir can help some avoid the flu shot—but it’s not for everyone.

I have never, ever done a flu shot, and I don’t plan on it.

I usually get the flu once every 5 to 7 years, so I don’t have to take antibiotics. I am consistently and constantly doing everything I can do be as healthy as possible.

That doesn’t mean I’m perfect all the time, but what I’m doing is I’m paying attention to my immune system, and I’m paying attention to mucous…

Mucous is one of the body’s best tell tale signals of your immune system’s strength.

Too much or too little can mean your alkalinity is off and that you’re not absorbing your nutrients and minerals (So you’re wasting food and all those vitamins.)

I’m also sharing one of my all time favorite probiotically packed foods that boosts immunity—Kefir.

We’re covering:

  • The abusive relationship between stress & your immune system
  • How to tell if your body is too acidic and not getting enough minerals.
  • Why mucous is essential for the friendly probiotics in your body
  • How to get your body more alkaline so you have a strong immune system.
  • My favorite food with immune-supporting herbs & probiotics.
  • Some tips for working probiotic foods into your delicious dinners
  • The biggest MYTH I hear about Flu Season. This one makes me want to scream!

Comment below and let me know, What is your opinion on the flu shot?

TRANSCRIPTION – word for word…
Hey, everyone. I’m Summer Bock. This is Guts and Glory. I wanted to chat with you for a second about my opinion on the flu shot. Yes. This is a big question. This is a big deal.

This is talked about all the time. If you bring up anything about this on social media, people go crazy. I just wanted to let you know where I personally stand. This is where you do your own medical research. Insert medical disclaimer here. Listen to your doctor. Do whatever they are advising you to do. Pay attention to that. For me, I have never, ever done a flu shot, and I don’t plan on it unless I’m 80 years old and my health is failing, or for some reason I feel like I need it. I don’t even think that’s going to happen, to be honest with you.

I have no desire to do a flu shot. I don’t get the flu very often. I usually get it once every 5 to 7 years. Here’s what I do, and this is what I feel comfortable with. I am consistently and constantly doing everything I can do be as healthy as possible.

That doesn’t mean I’m being perfect, or 100% clean all the time, but what I’m doing is I’m paying attention to my immune system, and I’m paying attention to mucous.

Your mucous levels are a really strong indicator of how your immune system is functioning. Let’s talk a little bit about some of the things to look out for. Really thin, runny nose, whether it’s your runny nose, it’s dripping out of the front, or it’s post nasal drip going down the back, that is a sign of a couple different things.

It’s usually a sign of too much acidity in the body, meaning that you’re not getting enough minerals. You’re not absorbing your minerals or breaking them down very well. You’re too stressed out and you have too acidic of a lifestyle or a diet. It can also be associated with adrenalin. Maybe you have allergies or other things going on where your body is producing more adrenalin than it needs to. This is why sometimes when people are riding their bike or running they might get a runny nose, just that clear drip. That’s part of an adrenalin response. Those are a couple things to look out for. I don’t look at that as the best sign. If you have any kind of thin, watery, runny nose thing going on, your immune system isn’t functioning as well as it should be.

That’s just one thing to look for. You want to get more alkaline. That’s the key there.

Then you also want to make sure that you’re getting really good protection inside your gut from your gut bacteria, so that they can help be producing a mucous layer in your mucous membranes that protects them. Another possibility is just irritation of those mucous membranes because you don’t have a thick enough mucous layer that’s a healthy mucous layer.

There’s too much mucous and there’s not mucous. You want to be somewhere in the middle in order to maintain a really strong, functioning immune system.

If you tend to be on the less mucousy side, even some of that thin, runny nose, you might want to head towards kefir. That’s what I have over here in the background. That’s some kefir in that bowl over there. It’s home-made. When you make it at home, you use kefir grains. I actually think that’s the best way to do it. If you don’t have time, you can buy the store-bought kefir. You’re going to want to do no sugar. Do the plain stuff. Mix it in your smoothies.

Some people use it in marinades or sauces, dips, things like that. You don’t want to cook it. You want to make sure you get those live probiotics so that they can help your immune system get stronger and boost that functioning. Make sure that you’re getting that good mucous. That’s one thing to think about.

Some people are so clean, and they’ve been doing this for so long, that they’re a little bit deficient in that mucous that’s actually supportive. If you are somebody, or somebody you’re working with is too mucousy then you want to go more towards something like kimchi or sauerkraut. Kim chi is awesome. It’s one of my favorites.

I have a previous post on how to make some kimchi, so go check that out. It’s this exact one in fact. I love it. It’s delicious, probably my favorite one I’ve ever made, to be honest with you. That turned out well. Kim chi is fantastic. It has these amazing immune-supporting herbs in it, plus it has the probiotics.

I want you to consider doing kimchi on a daily basis. You do want to do it with meals. This is a great way to help your body get that good mucous going without taking it to the side of having it be too mucousy. For people that are too mucousy, steer clear of the dairy ones. Steer clear of the kefir and things like that, and head more towards the fermented veggies like kimchi or sauerkraut.

That’s my personal solution to the flu shot. That way I don’t have to get the flu shot. These are things that I eat on a regular basis. You want to just note the amount of times that you get sick per year.

The way to tell if you’re getting a stronger immune system is that you get sick less often. As you get older, and you get healthier, and you take better care of yourself, we want to see you getting sick less and less often.

I don’t want you making excuses like, “Oh, it’s flu season. It’s cold season. All the seasons … I always get sick when the seasons change.” No. Not anymore, folks. I want you to just get so good at taking care of yourself and get out of the stress pocket that you’re in, and figure out how to get your immune system functioning at its highest so that you’re not getting sick very often at all.

I’m happy to say it’s been quite a while since I’ve been sick.
I think we’re approaching a year now. I’m really happy, because I used to get sick three to five times a year. I used to take antibiotics like freaking candy because I get strep throat so often. I’m very, very pleased. It’s not for lack of trying. I think the biggest thing that I have changed is stress levels. That’s the thing I have focused on the absolute most. There you go.

How I chose fermentation instead of medicine

I want to take a moment to tell you a story.

When I graduated in 2001 with a certificate in Herbology I was ready to hit the ground running.

Or so I thought.

I had no idea what to do. I had learned which herbs to help with all kinds of ailments, become adept at making herbal formulas, and made a pretty large dent in my own healing journey.

I decided to continue my education and enrolled in Pre-Med for my undergraduate degree. I lived with a bunch of roommates and tried working with people (my roommates friends and my fellow students at school) to help them overcome their health challenges by using herbs. But I really really really really struggled to figure out how to structure the meetings, had zero training in being a ‘professional’, and was completely eluded by simple things such as their questions about the validity of herbs.

During my last quarter (in organic chemistry lecture) it dawned on me – I didn’t want to write prescriptions. I did a bunch of research and discovered that it was illegal to NOT prescribe medications in certain situations. Having this realization was akin to learning the Tooth Fairy wasn’t real. I wanted to be the kind of doctor that truly helped people. I didn’t want to partner up with Big Pharma as part of my career path.

The brakes screeched as I slowed down and started to turn towards a new path.

I chose nutrition.

I decided to work with people who wanted to push the boundaries of what it means to be truly healthy.

So I went to the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and became certified as a health coach. I was very interested in this program because of the actionable skills and promise to have clients before graduating.

It was one of the best experiences of my life.

I graduated with 12 clients. This was great, but I really struggled to pay back my student loans. There was some basic stuff I really needed to know to be successful as a business owner and professional that I still hadn’t learned at any of my, now three, schools.

My dream was to have a full time practice and never have to work for anyone ever again. I tried quitting my job and just working as a health coach/herbalist. I survived for a while and then would wake up in the middle of the night stressing about how I was going to pay my bills, make ends meet, and grow my practice to a sustainable level.

I was back in the same spot I was after graduating herbal medicine school.

I just felt like I ‘didn’t know how’ to get people in the door and fill my practice with clients.

I didn’t know what the answer was. I kept thinking that there was a program I was missing or a VA (virtual assistant) I needed to hire or a certification out there that would teach me what I needed to know.

And all of these things are sort of true. They are all part of our paths.

But they aren’t the things that made me be successful.

It wasn’t until I started using the power of probiotics and fermentation in my practice that this all changed. I created two distinct programs to run my clients through that incorporated these teachings that I was passionate about.

Speaking of passion, let’s back up a bit so I can tell you how I ended up focused on fermentation. I have a passion for healing. I think my mom helped share this with me. When I was little we would go on plant walks she would give me sticks and leaves to chew on and tell me the medicinal qualities of the plants. It opened up a magical world for me.

She went to Sandor Katz’s workshop on fermentation back when he was teaching at the Sequatchie Valley Institute, bought his book, and mailed it to me.

Perfect timing – I was at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition and wrapping up my two bachelors degrees. This is when I had just sat down with my doctor who told me that she couldn’t help me (you’ve probably heard me tell this story before and if you haven’t, listen to one of the upcoming telesummits – either the Heal Your Gut Summit or the Microbiome Summit and you’ll hear it). I decided I would heal my body. Clear decision.

I was working at a supplement store and got an amazing training on probiotics. I started taking them and it was helping. I realized through meeting and talking with some of the leading professionals in healing that my gut was the source of all my issues.

Remember, I’m trained as an herbalist here. So you know that as I’m taking these probiotic pills I’m thinking to myself that, “This isn’t how my ancestors got probiotics.” And IF these are an essential part of the human body then “What is the whole food form of probiotics?”

Finding the answer to this question became my mission. This was almost a decade ago.

I read Sandor Katz’s book cover to cover. I went to his workshop. I started a sauerkraut company. I used fermented foods to heal my body.

I taught classes locally. I got clients. I finally was able to teach in a way that connected the dots for people. I built my list to 1200 through just teaching classes mostly in person. I hired an assistant.

And now I have compiled all of that information and made it possible for those who are passionate about healing, probiotics, and gut health to take their health to the next level (and their business if they have one).

The Fermentationist Certification Program is this place. Not only will you get a chance to stand out from other wellness practitioners, you become a resource for recommendations in your community. When you become stellar at teaching classes you become known locally as the ‘go-to’ resource for all things fermented.

This kind of distinction makes all the difference in word of mouth marketing, which makes it easier to get clients and fill your practice.

But when you actually learn to create a program that incorporates probiotics and fermentation you can teach your clients so they can heal their bodies from the ground up, you literally get the opportunity to be successful doing something you love.

Click here to learn more about the program


Probiotically,
Summer

Guts & Glory #39: How to make the best miso you’ve ever tasted with Summer

Nothing nourishes like a warm cup of miso. It’s a fantastic source of vegetarian protein…I even drink the stuff for breakfast sometimes. The miso-making process is completely fascinating, but most people have never gotten a behind the scenes glimpse into what it takes to make this nutritious and ancient ferment. On today’s Guts & Glory episode you’ll learn all about miso, including:

  • Where the name miso comes from (this might be a bit disturbing for some!)
  • The health properties of miso and how it increases your body’s alkaline levels
  • The difference between barley koji, soybean koji, brown rice koji.
  • How to make this delicious paste in minutes
  • A few of my favorite companies to order miso starter from
  • How long until it’s ready, and more…

VIDEO TRANSCRIPTION

Hello everyone. I’m Summer Bock, this is Guts And Glory, and I wanted to make sure that we had a chance to talk about some fermented foods today. This is one of my favorite ferments, but I don’t know if you recognize this.

Do you know what this is? This is brown rice koji. This is miso starter. All right, “koji” means moldy grain, and this is one of my favorite, favorite, favorite ferments because it is just so delicious.

There’s some really amazing properties in terms of helping the body to get more alkaline, it’s a fantastic source of vegetarian protein, but this isn’t miso yet. This is just the starter culture.

These are little tiny grains of rice that, see how they’re kind of powdery white looking? They’re filled with mold, and the mold that they’re filled with is called aspergillus oryzae. Aspergillus oryzae is the mold, it’s the starter culture that allows you to make miso.

If you’re wanting to get on board with making some miso and experimenting with one of the best ferments out there but also one of the oldest ferments, this is what you have to get your hands on first. You have to go out and find, well it can be any kind of koji. There’s barley koji, soybean koji, brown rice koji.

I use this one because it’s organic and really much easier to get than some of the others, but South River Miso is a company that you can order koji from. You can look online, search around for it, but this one’s by Mitoku,  M-I-T-O-K-U, Mitoku, and this is their brown rice koji, so this is what you get your hands on.

Then you mix it with some beans and some salt and you stick it in a little crock. I’ll put it in a jar like this. I’m not making any miso right now, but I will be soon. You put it in a little jar like this, or you can put it in a crock like this, whatever you so desire.

You can let it ferment for anywhere from two months all the way to nine years. There are ferments of miso that are going for nine years, and truly the longer it ages the better it tastes. I’ve made miso that I’ve harvested every year and finally had one that was three years old, and it really was by far the best miso I’ve ever tasted, and that’s something you should know. When you make miso yourself, if you do it right it will be some of the best miso you’ve ever tasted in your life.

I hope this inspires you and motivates you to get out there and maybe get started on miso, and just know that the first step is getting your hands on some of the koji. Koji is your miso starter. Alright, thanks everyone. This is Summer Bock signing out.

Guts & Glory 38: What the crock? A mini-tutorial on the best system to prevent mold & make the tastiest, healthiest sauerkraut & kimchi with Summer

What the crock? A mini-tutorial on the best system to prevent mold & make the tastiest, healthiest sauerkraut & kimchi.

Kimchi, kraut, miso…all tasty, all contain probiotics, and all are easy to make, but one of the biggest questions and debates is what is the best system.

I get asked a TON of questions about what kinds of crocks to use. I made a video where I show off some of the most popular varieties and let you in on my favorite choices for making the best homemade probiotics in the form of fermented veggies.

One of the most common complaints I hear about making fermented foods is “IT MOLDED, SO I THREW IT AWAY!”

In this video I’ve shared some tips on how NOT to get mold.

In this mini lesson we’ll go over:

  • Airlocks vs. traditional style
  • Size—does it matter?
  • Something you have in your recycling bin that you can use right now
  • Where to score giant crocks
  • What kinds of weights are best
  • An important thing to watch out for
  • And my personal favorite system!

The kind of crock you use is important because when you’ve got this dialed, it takes WAY LESS STEPS, which leads to more raw fermented foods in your life—Yay! And homemade fermented foods have EIGHT TIMES the amount of probiotics than a bottle of supplements.

The right system also helps prevent mold and makes a tastier ferment, and did you know that some crocks are actually better for different climates or for those with Candida?

Speaking of rocking out…have you checked out the new Fermentationist Certification Program? We are running a small group through our new and improved shortened version! It starts this January and is the perfect way to get your expertise increased to help you teach classes in your community, become a mad scientist in the kitchen, or start your very own fermented foods company.

Comment below and let me know what kinds of crocks you use: whether I listed them here or not, I want to know how you make fermented foods in your kitchen!

How to Make Fresh Almond Milk That Doesn’t Spoil

So,  I’ve made almond milk for years. And even though it is easy to make and very delicious, it goes bad quickly if you don’t use it in a couple days. PLUS, if you need it in a pinch, you won’t have enough time to make it. Thankfully, I have solved BOTH of these problems with a simple solution.

Check it out!

Step 1:

Soak almonds in filtered water for 8 hours or more. Rinse each day if you soak them for longer.

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Step 2:

Purchase a nut milk strainer bag. I like this one the best.

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Step 3:

Place the bag in a pitcher.

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Step 4:

Rinse soaked almonds and place in blender. I use a 1:4 ratio. 1 cup almonds to 4 cups water. Blend for 2-3 minutes. Allow it to rest for 5 minutes. Blend 1 more minute.

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Step 5:

Strain in nut milk bag.

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Step 6:

Place fresh milk in jar and refrigerate.

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Step 7:

Pour the rest in ice cube trays.

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Step 8:

Now you have almond milk whenever you need it. Awesome!!!

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Have fun!

Guts & Glory #36: How to make easy Kimchi in 18 minutes!

Come to my kitchen and watch me and my herbalist, Lauren, as we show you how to make Kimchi, a delicious ferment that has exceptional health benefits. (And 3000 years of history starting in China!)

In recent years, there is a lot of scientific evidence that suggests that the ancient traditions of fermenting vegetables is important for the health of your brain and the rest of your body. It’s great for inflammation and for the liver. It’s also frickin’ delicious!!! I eat it everyday.

Watch as Lauren and I show you exactly how we make Kimchi in minutes!

(And witness as we both cry!)

We’ll also show you some tricks like:

  • How much salt
  • What kind of cabbage
  • How to cut your veggies
  • A secret tip for peeling ginger, turmeric & garlic
  • The (even) quicker way to make Kimchi
  • Getting a mold-free batch
  • And one trick that even I didn’t know until I made this video for keeping germs out!

Did you know I started an award-winning fermented vegetables company? I’m sharing how to make one of my favorite fermented recipes that tastes good on almost everything… well, except maybe doughnuts…

More about Kimchi…

Kimchi is a nutritional food with high level of vitamins including ascorbic acid, carotene, B-complex), minerals (calcium, iron, potassium) and dietary fiber. Kimchi has been shown to be antioxidant, antimutagenic, and have anticarcinogenic activities. The active agents in kimchi include carotene, capsaicin, chlorophylls, dietary fibers, phenolic compounds, ascorbic acid, allylsulfides and lactic acid.

Possible Health Benefits of Fermented Vegetables:

Reduces the risk of stomach, gastric, colon, and liver cancer

Rebuilds biological intestinal terrain

Improves immunity

Increase nutrient absorption

High in enzymes

Helps eliminate Candida overgrowth by crowding out the candida

Improved digestibility

Prevention of disease

Improve your moods

Increase your energy

So much goodness! I hope you’ll experiment with this easy recipe!

I want to know: What’s your biggest question about making fermented veggies?

Guts & Glory #35 How to make my award-winning sauerkraut (and why a homemade batch is way more healthy)

Your average bottle of good probiotics costs about $30 for a month’s supply.

Your average batch of homemade sauerkraut contains a small organic cabbage, which costs about $6, plus some sea salt, which might run ya $2.00 for a huge box.

That batch of kraut will probably cost $6.17. And it will be waaaay more powerful, probiotically speaking.

Dr. Mercola did a test where he had his homemade sauerkraut tested for its probiotic content. He found that 16 oz. of his kraut had the equivalent of 8 bottles of probiotics pills! What an incredible testament to the power of live foods.

At 8x the potency, that means that $6.12 worth of kraut can save you $240.00. And be a more effective way to get probiotics in your body—fast. Doing what they do to keep you healthy.

Just like Bob Ross painted happy little trees, you could start painting happy little probiotics.

(I just painted one. It’s too small for you to see.)

Sauerkraut is one of the easiest, most healthy things you can make. It takes 10 minutes.

Watch this video and learn how to:

  • How to make kraut safely
  • Why kraut is a natural antibiotic
  • What I wish every restaurant would make
  • The biggest difference between store bought kraut and supplements
  • Should you add water to your kraut
  • How to keep your kraut from molding
  • How often to eat kraut

If you are just taking probiotic pills, you are only getting a fraction of all the benefits. Or the deliciousness!

Watch the video to learn why my kraut tastes so good—Good Food Award winning good.

I want to know: What’s your favorite thing to add to sauerkraut for extra yumminess.