Probiotics are beneficial for everyone- ever since I started reading about traditional diets 6 years ago, I notice all the ‘new’ discoveries about probiotics helping with digestion, autoimmune disorders, and other chronic conditions. In reality, they used to be a part of everyone’s whole food’s diet; probiotics were used in the past to preserve fresh foods like vegetables, fruits, dairy, and even meat.
Before our clean modern lives, working in the dirt and with animals was a part of most healthy people’s daily activities. Now, we can go days without even getting our hands dirty!
Probiotics are a big part of the GAPS diet. See the Gut-Brain Connection post for more information about the role they play with chronic conditions such as autism, allergies, and eczema.
These healthy microbes can be gotten a variety of ways, here are 10.
1. Kimchi. This cultured multi-vegetable mix is a flavorful condiment to eat alongside savory dishes.
2. Kombucha is a fermented sweet tea. You can buy it in stores, or very easily and inexpensively make it yourself once you have the ‘mother’.
3. Saurkraut, when made at home is full of active cultures. I literally make a gallon of kraut at a time; it’s super inexpensive and my children love it when I make it out of purple cabbage or combine the green and purple (it cultures to make pink!). Culturing the cabbage makes the vitamins more accessible to our bodies as well.
4. Milk kefir is super super easy, I put off making it for years because I had never heard of it, but you literally just drop the kefir grains (not really grains) into room temperature milk, allow to sit for 12-24 hours, and then strain them out. Use in smoothies, popsicles, and just drink plain.
5. Beet Kvass can be re-made using the same beets multiple times. Beets are thought to fight cancer and increase the amounts of oxygen your blood can carry. Kvass can be taken straight, or used in salad dressings. It’s a beautiful red color.
6. When your’e looking for intense healing, probiotics can be purchased in supplement form. Research carefully to make sure you’re not throwing your money away on an inactive or old supplement; I’ve used Biokult in the past, and I saw die off from them, so I know they were active and working.
7. Playing outside in healthy natural areas allows us to breathe in the healthy microbes that are keeping the soil and ecosystem in balance. A beautiful forest is a much better choice than, say, a supermarket shopping cart- the forest has checks and balances within nature and beneficial bacteria keep the bad ones from overpopulating. A supermarket shopping cart is likely also full of bacteria, but since they often have been wiped down with antibiotic wipes, or had diapers leak on them from ill children, those microbes are much less likely to be the good kind.
8. Yogurt is the most commonly accepted probiotic in our culture. It’s way cheaper to make your own, did you know that? For less than $10 and an hour you can make 12 8-ounce individual servings to have on hand. See instructions here.
9. Chutneys, this one is peach, are preserved with probiotics and are delicious. Use them to extend the short peach season.
10. Pickles are eaten by most people, but the kind you buy in stores are usually NOT full of probiotics. You can make your own, or purchase naturally fermented pickles most health food stores. I’ve made some great pickles on my own, but they turn out different depending on the temperature they’re cultured at, so I choose to buy them most of the time because I like the consistency better.
You can find recipes for probiotics to be made weekly, and consumed daily for optimal health in the Grain Free Meal Plans! CLICK HERE to learn more!
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