Here in Puna - we are blessed (no hashtag needed) with an abundance of healthy activities, drinks and foods at our fingertips. We've got our famous "Buddha" bowls, a bountiful salad bar (with Kalani-made dressings, hehe) - and a decent population of volunteers who have their own supplements they take everyday.
Ailene loves herself some mango - picked fresh that morning.
Take a walk through the lanai and it's likely you'll pass by at least a handfull of people who are yoga practioners, have taken part in a Vipassina medition, and are just as passionate about the joys of being healthy as I am.
If you've eaten a meal with me - or have spent any amount of time chit-chatting about food stuffs, you may have heard about my love for probiotics. Balancing out those healthy floras and faunas that lie within our digestive system is a passion of mine. Through kombucha, yogurt, kefir, and fermented veggies - I love it all. Now, I AM NOT A MEDICIAL PROFESSIONAL - but having said that, have you ever thought about what your belly may trying to be saying to you?
Let me start with the basics.
Probiotics are good for us - we naturally have them within our bodies environment. Probiotics are microorganisms (microflora) that live in our intestines. They are good bacterias that aid with proper digestion, nutrient absorption, and contribute immesly to healthy immune functioning. Probiotics tell the bad bacteria to buzz off - and protect us from disease, infection, and inflammation.
Interested in finding out if adding additional probiotics is something you should be doing? Do you find yourself feeling stressed? This could translate into many things: dry skin, an itchy scalp, breakouts - even nightmares! For many of us, stress lies within our gut.
Still not sure?
Here's even more insight - trust your gut on this one (wink, wink)
1. Antibiotics: Antibiotics translates to "anti-life" - the exact opposite of probiotic, which means "pro-life". If you've taken a round of antibiotics, you've killed off bacteria within your body - antibiotics don't know the difference between good and bad bacterias - consider a probiotic to reintroduce the healthy flora back into your body.
2. Food Posioning: If you recently had a bout of food posioning, or eaten something that didn't agree with you - there is a good chance that bad bacteria is still lingering around your body. Taking a probiotic will fight off these bad guys and get your cycles normalized!
3. Candida and Yeast Infections: These are both a good indicator that there is an overgrowth of bad bacteria within the body. The best way to bring it into alignment - no, not a coffee... Probiotics! They'll crowd out the bad bacteria, helping to reinvigorate the healthy stuffs.
4. Mood Swings: Feeling stressed? Anxious? Irritable? It could be because your intestional flora is out of whack. Start using probiotics to balance the flora, this will improve your neurotransmitters (ya know, the things that send you happy messages in your brain!) thus resulting in a happy mindset.
There you have it people - Probiotics = Happiness!
Feeling a little rumbly in the tumbly? Let me share a kombucha recipe that is so simple - you can make it in the jungle! (But, really - we did make it in the jungle...)
Kombucha is a fermented tea drink. It has natural effervescene that's packed with healthy bacteria, minerals, and vitamins - all great for your guts. Kombucha has roots back in China - specifically the Qin Dynasty (!) in 220 BCE with record of traveling to Russia and then bubbling its way to health-conscious communities in the 1970's. You can find kombucha in health food stores, all over - that being said, it's super simple to make.
JUNGLE BOOCH - (yields about a gallon)
• 3 1/2 quarts of water
• 8 black, green, or a mix of tea bags - we used black tea
• 1 cup organic sugar - the sugar is for the culture to consume
• 2 cups 'starter tea' from last 'booch batch (if you don't have this, grab an "Original" kombucha from your favorite health food store)
• A SCOBY! - SCOBY is an ancronym standing for, "Symbolic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast" Ask your kombucha-brewing friends for one or make your own!
Scooping out booch into sterilized glasses.
1. Steep tea in boiling water with sugar added, then cool.
2. Sterilize a container.
3. Add your SCOBY (it'll look all slimy, remember it's alive! Handle with care.) If you don't have a SCOBY, add your bottle of booch to create your own.
4. Cover and let sit for 7-10 days. Then add you own deliciousness. Keep your original SCOBY and scoop out some 'booch into other sterilized, glass bottles. Ailene and I got together this past weekend and added some added tastiness to the booch she was already creating.
Ginger, Lemon, Turmeric
To see more picture - check out the album on our Facebook page!
Interested in learning more about the wonderful world of probiotics? Check out some of the things Sandor Katz, fermentation expert, is up to. Also - if you're a volunteer at Kalani, make sure to get some of Charles' famous 'kimchi' on the salad bar!