This past month, despite seemingly having extra hours in the day, I have been very busy.  I am not complaining, being busy is good right now!  It keeps me fulfilled and makes it exciting to wake up every morning.  However, between blogs, client consults and interviews for my upcoming Healthy Aging Summit, I haven’t had much free time to “capitalize” on sheltering in place. 

I did take a break yesterday to go for a long hike but today I finally took the opportunity to do something that I have wanted to try for years.  I made sauerkraut!  That might seem strange to some.  Of all the delicious things I could have baked or made, I chose sauerkraut.  The reason is that sauerkraut is one of those traditionally fermented foods that has many powerful health benefits. 

“All disease begins in the gut” ~ Hippocrates

Our gut has trillions of microorganisms which are the key to many aspects of our health, from enhancing digestion and metabolism, to supporting your mood and immune system.  85% of our immunity comes from these microscopic inhabitants as they defend us from foreign invaders, like bacteria and viruses.  Now, more than ever, we need to support these beneficial bugs.  One of the best ways to get these bacteria to thrive is to feed them fermented foods, like sauerkraut.

Fermented foods have been part of traditional diets for thousands of years and have always been highly prized for their health benefits.  Sauerkraut is one of the oldest traditional foods dating back 2,000 years or more.   The fermentation of vegetables, in this circumstance cabbage, is called lacto-fermentation. The “lacto” in the name refers to the lactobacillus strains that are active in the fermentation process. Natural microbes such as lactobacilli in the environment create lactic acid which naturally preserves food. However, the process of lacto-fermentation has numerous other advantages beyond those of preservation. The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables help enhance nutrients, produce important enzymes, has antibiotic and anticarcinogenic properties and promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine. 

If you are interested in exploring DIY vegetable fermentation with me…click here to see the recipe I used today as well as a recipe for fermented carrots that a colleague shared. 

If you’re NOT interested in trying your hand in the fermentation process, but want to reap the benefits, my favorite Fermented Food company is called HEX Ferments.  HEX Ferments is a Maryland based food company that only uses organic ingredients and employs the traditional fermentation process, no shortcuts!  You can purchase their products from Whole Foods or Amazon. 

Is there a home-bound project or a passion that you have wanted to pursue but have never had the time?  Well, now is your opportunity!  Try your hand at something creative like painting, sewing, writing a book.  Or go bigger: learn a musical instrument, a new language or take an online course. 

When you fill your time at home with something you are passionate about, something that you have always wanted to do, you wake up looking forward to what the new day brings with enjoyment instead of dismay.  

So my message today is simple:  If there is something that you have always wanted to do, now’s the time.  Whether it’s making fermented vegetables, taking on a new craft, or learning a new skill, like Nike says: “Just Do It.”  It will bring excitement to your day and happiness to your heart.  You have everything to gain and nothing to lose! 

Please let me know what new endeavor you have taken on! 

Susan Brady
is a Physical Therapist,
Nutrition Consultant and
Doctor of Integrative Medicine.
She has been treating women with osteoporosis for over 30 years and is dedicated to helping people achieve
lasting good health and vitality.

Want to learn more about how you can improve your bone health? Contact me for a free 15 minute phone consult to learn more about the BONES Method™ and how it can help you achieve strong, healthy bones for life!

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