I LOVE fermenting foods! Let me say it again....
I LOVE FERMENTING FOODS!
One of my earliest memories is of an elderly Hungarian woman that my mother took care of, her name was Suzie, & I remember her making whole foods-- real foods in her kitchen all the time! I remember her making cottage cheese, fermenting sauerkraut, and giving us bread pudding. I specifically remember eating sausage smothered in fermented (not store bought) sauerkraut and belly peppers in her beautiful flower garden.
As I got older, some of those whole foods went away, but I remember my mom always talking about how wine was good for you. She would tell me how it was great for digestion, even though she didn't really know exactly how it worked-- she knew that it was good for you.
Flash forward to when I began attending nutrition school and I started hearing people talking about fermentation... My first thought was, 'fermentation? isn't that like....alcohol?'. As I began to learn more and read further, I began to realize what fermentation really was! I realized that probiotics didn't necessarily need to come from a capsule that I bought at a health food store, that I could actually make probiotic rich foods at home!
My world somewhat exploded! I had been talking about good and friendly bacteria to my family and friends for a while-- but didn't realize it could come from fermented foods-- stuff I could do at home.
As I started researching further, I found that a lot of the foods that I loved were actually not really fermented at all. I love pickles & sauerkraut, but the kind I bought in the store and learned how to make at home, were not fermented like they were meant to be. They were made with vinegar and canned with heat- making them lose all of their awesome enzymes and friendly bacteria. The first thing I fermented on my own was sauerkraut. It was fairly simple- I chopped up a head of cabbage, added some salt, and pounded the hell out of it to release juices. I put it in a jar and let it ferment for a bit & then opened the jar & was AMAZED! It tasted just like the sauerkraut I ate when I was a toddler! I excitedly phoned my mom to tell her about this and she was just as thrilled as I was-- and informed me to make her some as well-- or at least bring her some. When I did, she was just as thrilled as I was!
Before we go much further--- let me explain
Why Fermented Foods are good for you!
Here is a simple break down for you-- not at all as deep as it goes, but a simple break down nonetheless:
Sally Fallon refers to lacto-fermentation in the book, Nourishing Traditions,
“The proliferation of lactobacilli in fermented vegetables enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels. These beneficial organisms produce numerous helpful enzymes as well as antibiotic and anti-carcinogenic substances. Their main by-product, lactic acid, not only keeps vegetables and fruits in a state of perfect preservation but also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine.”
Not long after I discovered how to brew kombucha, I happened upon a recipe from the blog called The Kitchen Rag. The writer of that blog also has a facebook page & her name is Diana! She had a recipe for lacto-fermented pickles that were to die for-- find the recipe here. I went overboard and made 4-5 1/2 gallon jars of lacto-fermented pickles! When it came time for my husband and I to move out of state & live in a hotel for a few weeks... I realized that my beloved ferments could not come with me.. or at least not all of them. I ended up driving up to my school the day before we moved and dropped of scoby's, kombucha, and lacto-fermented pickles... then cried coming home because of all the work I put into them!
To the right you can see one of the massive scoby's I had-- I completely forgot about this brew and the scoby grew to be quite large!
Learn more about Kombucha here.
Did you know that after a round of antibiotics, it can take up to 2 years to regain the proper gut bacteria? 2 YEARS!?? The first time I read that I didn't think it was possibly true... then I kept reading it and it kept coming up. 2 years is a long time!
So I set out to have more fermented foods! When I started attending Naturopathic Medical School, I saw a bunch of my peers drinking this fabulous drink. That fabulous drink turned out to be kombucha! I bought a bottle at a local
Co-op that was within a mile of my school and fell in love. I began spending lots of money on kombucha... At least $3 a bottle. I had at least one bottle per day... $21 per week... $84 per week-- yea my hubby caught on and told me to tone down my habit!
I had mentioned to a co-worker, at the time, how much I loved this drink but hated the price and she laughed and said "I'm shocked you don't make it yourself". What? I can make this amazing drink myself??? I was known by many people and to this day I still am, for making everything myself. I can foods, ferment foods, I have a skin care line (meaning we never ever ever buy soap, lotion, cream, salves, etc), dry my own food, etc. I started looking up recipes online and happened upon one for kombucha... and before you know it I became a kombucha brewing queen!
Once we got into our home I started fermenting once again. My husband handles it quite well-- he understands how good & cheap it is to ferment your own foods! Honestly, to ferment most of my veggies I just collected whey from my yogurt & lacto-fermented most of them. A lot of people are intimidated by fermenting, I would suggest starting with kombucha! It is yummy-- once you get used to the taste... it tastes a bit vinegary.. but once you drink it a couple times you will fall in love! Then you will learn how to do a second fermentation & flavor it! My currently favorite is Elderberry!
To the left you will see a continuous brew of kombucha and some quart sized brews... I'm also doing some sprouting.. and you can see a few jars of kimchi behind the sprouting.. I make as many ferments as possible!
I strongly suggest buying the book, The Art of Fermentation. This was the fifth book on fermentation I read, and I loved it! It was very in depth but easy to understand and relateable! The author talks about fermenting beverages, veggies, fruits, and all the different fermentation styles! I purchased one for my kindle and walk around the house reading it!
At this point I have fermented the following (and they were all extremely simple). You can find tons of other recipes on Pinterest! Oh and you can follow me & find my personal pinterest page here.
Until next time! Peace & Love!! Oh and hey check out some of my other fun ferments!
Disclaimer: Jessica Kellaway is a Naturopathic Practitoner & Nutritionist not a medical doctor. She gives no medical advice, simply suggestions. If you choose to follow these suggestions you are doing so out of your own free will!
I have had a great outpouring of love from many of my clients, customers, and fans during my pregnancy thus far. Every once in a while I update via Facebook, but I've been getting lots of emails and messages asking how my heart is handling the pregnancy.
Well-- I am currently just over 26 weeks pregnant, about 14 weeks from the guess date! My husband and I are very excited and happy to say that we are having a boy! My son is very active and happy in there.
As for my heart, it is doing better than expected! I have issues every once in a while, but it is no where near as bad as it was a year ago. My heart rate is quite elevated compared to what is considered normal during pregnancy, but not too much irregular beating. The doctors have been watching my son's heart beat to see if he will end up like his mama! So far so good. His heart rate is usually a little higher, but it isn't something to be worried about!
I've surprisingly gained about 13 pounds and it is all in my belly! I've had tons of morning sickness.. scratch that.. all day, everyday, middle of the night, wake me up out of my sleep to barf -- sickness. I am carrying pretty low, but it is not a concern :)
As for my workout routine, I've been doing yoga and light stretching, which is a big change from my weight lifting days prior to pregnancy. I'm doing my best to keep my heart under control, as I have a rare condition, so cardio and lifting isn't a good idea or approved by my doctors or midwife.
Cravings? Not too many! I enjoy chocolate- especially hot chocolate for some odd reason! Fruit is a pretty big deal to me as well. I can eat tons of it! I drink bone broth 4-5 days per week & I make it regularly. I eat lots of good fats (butter, coconut oil, etc.) I'm eating meat during the pregnancy- but it still makes me feel pretty yucky. I'm not a big fan of meat and never have been. I ate a rotisserie chicken the other day and I found it rather amazing!
I recently put my pregnancy protocol into a booklet for other moms! You can find it here. Plus I do lots of supplements and vitamins to support more than just the pregnancy. I support each organ that is growing and developing, rather than a one size fits all. Lots of probiotics, prebiotics, and such! I've actually bought the best maternity/nursing bra ever-- I would look into Hotmilk.com! It is the most supportive bra I've EVER had! (I've gone up 3 sizes since getting pregnant).
Thank you to all the lovely prayers and support I have received from so many of you! Below is a small gallery of pictures for your enjoyment!
Until Next Time
Avoid these oils during pregnancy:
(Some of these oils are Young Living Blends)
Use with caution during pregnancy:
(Some of these oils are Young Living Blends)
Every aromatherapist & aromatologist has a very different opinion on which essential oils should or shouldn't be used! I would recommend finding someone who has had extensive training in oils-- not just a random distributor of oils from any company. People who are going to school for Naturopathy or Naturopaths themselves have extensive training in essential oils and therapies. Muscle testing is the best way to figure out which oils your body needs!
This post has been a long time coming. I kept sitting down to write it and then would get distracted and do something else. Now I am 6 1/2 months pregnant and I'm finally writing about my experience.
Being on your period can be one of the most uncomfortable things in the world. I was always in pain, not just cramps, backache, and headaches-- but also down there it was hurting all the time. Most of the time, I also had cysts that were bursting on my ovaries just as my period started. I tried pads, the diva cup, and tampons and nothing helped. I liked the diva cup, but could never get it in properly to where I was comfortable. This went on for years.
When I started going to my naturopathy school, I was talking with one of the head doulas and she was telling me about how the commercial pads and tampons (along with many other products) contain xeno-estrogens (fancy name for false estrogens). She said that the normal time of bleeding is only supposed to be 4-6 days.. That got me thinking.. haha... I was bleeding anywhere from 7-10 days. It had been that way for a really long time. I had seen an OB-GYN and she put me on birth control that gave me the symptoms of my period but no flow. I eventually went off birth control and my period came back to 7-10 days of really heavy flow. So after my lovely talk with the doula, I switched to buying the pads at school that were chlorine free and safe. You can find them here. It really got me thinking though, so I did a little research, finding that xeno-estrogens will cause you to bleed longer.... you bleed longer you buy more pads.. huh.. Then I got to thinking about the chemicals we are putting right up in and around a sacred part of the body and absorbent part of the body let me add.. I still shake my head when I think about it to this day.
I started using those for a while and noticed that after a few months, my flow wasn't as heavy and was lasting about a week now. Well, they got to be expensive, but to me it was worth it. One day I had to see my OB-GYN when I was on my period-- I was mortified. I had a few ovarian cysts burst. It was scary because I had had surgery on my ovaries in the past and was pretty much convinced that having children was going to be difficult. When she was "down there" doing an exam she asked me if I was feeling any burning or irritation. I told her that yes I always had felt that and thought that it was a normal thing to feel. I told her I switched to different pads and they helped but if I wore a pad that irritation and burning was there. She started looking through my chart and chuckled for a second. I did not see how anything like this was funny... She said "honey you have a really bad latex allergy." I answered saying "Yes I know, I can't even wear regular underwear with the band because it has latex in it." She nodded and answered, "Most if not all pads contain latex and that is why you are having all this irritation."
It was as if a light bulb went off. She suggested I use tampons and I started doing just that. One day out of nowhere I ran across a listing on etsy for cloth pads, which got me thinking. At first I thought that it was gross and disgusting, but then thought, I am okay with my body. So I started looking into it and eventually decided to give it a try. My life changed!
Here is a list of what happened after I started using cloth pads (within 2 months!)
After this I was a believer! I used the cloth pads, which never leaked on me & were 10X more comfortable let me add. I also decided to do a xeno-estrogen cleanse. That took about 2 months. Before I got pregnant, my period was now lasting 4-5 days, wasn't super heavy, I wasn't passing tons of clots, I had little to no pain, no headaches, no pms, and no cysts! I also got pregnant without trying. My husband and I had been trying for months prior to this and I was discouraged. We talked and decided we would wait until I finished school. Then a couple weeks later I got a big fat positive test!
I have used the cloth pads now, during pregnancy, as discharge naturally increases, and it helps me feel clean and refreshed. I will continue to use cloth pads after my son is born, but I thought I would share my experience with the world! I suggest buying cloth pads on etsy from people who make each one for you! Ask lots of questions as there are lots of different kinds out there! Some people use mamacloth, which I have heard great things about as well!
Who am I?
My name is Jessica Kellaway! I am the earth loving, natural parenting, Jesus loving weirdo your mama might have warned you about!