Friday, April 30, 2010

An affair with Keifer


I want to first off say thank you for all the nice complements ! For many years I have had more than a little interest in something called nutritional healing, and have studied it with herbal medicine , but simply on my own and not in a formal setting. It started when I was first diagnosed as having PCOS and being unable to conceive. For so many years I was told by doctors an others that my life would be so perfect if I just lost weight ( wrong- life happens in spite of what the scale says and losing weight will simply address the physical issues and nothing more). It took a naturopath to find the condition and point out that my weight was a symptom of this condition and not the cause. It is a symtom becase of the way the body metabolizes food in PCOS , but ironically weight loss helps to bring the other symptoms under control. When he explained how a diet specifically focusing on certain nutrients addressed the metabolic issue , that made me very curious as to why. It was obvious that this thing called nutrition could do a lot more than just build strong bones and muscles, and I stated to study everything I could get my hands on about it. After Nick was born and autism entered our lives, nutritional healing once again became a factor. Could supplements and diet reverse this problem ? Turns out that it can make a dramatic difference. If it were not for evening primrose oil supplements, Nick would had been lost still and weight loss would have never been possible for him in the first place. Proper nutrition, addressing what a body lacks, can work a miracle.

There is food, and there is food. The longer I am on this journey, the more I am reminded at every turn of the importance of high quality, nutrient dense real food. One thing new to me is the concept of soaking grains before use in cooking. Soaking helps break down the grain and allows it to become more digestible. For some people grains are a problem in greater amounts. PCOS patients are amongst those. It has something to do with the metabolism of starch carbs amongst other things. It seems that this can be lessened with soaking the grains. It is one thing that currently is stored in my brain and makes sense but has not come to the level where I can put it into words yet, so let me show you my first experiment into this- steel cut oats soaked in keifer

Yum yum !!! But what is keifer you ask ? No, not the guy in the series 24- it is a cultured milk product similar to yogert.
I will let this web page explain- from keifer.net

"Both kefir and yogurt are cultured milk products...
but they contain different types of beneficial bacteria. Yogurt contains
transient beneficial bacteria that keep the digestive system clean and
provide food for the friendly bacteria that reside there. But kefir can
actually colonize the intestinal tract, a feat that yogurt cannot match.
Kefir contains several major strains of friendly bacteria not commonly
found in yogurt, Lactobacillus Caucasus, Leuconostoc, Acetobacter species,
and Streptococcus species.It also contains beneficial yeasts, such as
Saccharomyces kefir and Torula kefir, which dominate, control and
eliminate destructive pathogenic yeasts in the body. They do so by
penetrating the mucosal lining where unhealthy yeast and bacteria reside,
forming a virtual SWAT team that housecleans and strengthens the
intestines. Hence, the body becomes more efficient in resisting such
pathogens as E. coli and intestinal parasites.
Kefir's active yeast and bacteria provide more nutritive value than
yogurt by helping digest the foods that you eat and by keeping the colon
environment clean and healthy.Because the curd size of kefir is smaller
than yogurt, it is also easier to digest, which makes it a particularly
excellent, nutritious food for babies, the elderly and people experiencing
chronic fatigue and digestive disorders. "
It is thick , but not quite as thick as sour cream. Like yogert it has a "twangy " taste but it is more liquid than yogurt. To me this is a little easier to work with in a recipe , as it easily pours much like buttermilk. Here is the recipe I used for the dish:
Overnight oats with keifer

1 part steel cut oats
3 to 5 parts keifer
1 cup blueberries
1 t cinnamon

Place in fridge overnight or up to 24 hrs. In the morning add 1/3 cup
dried fruit and place in a greased casserole dish.Bake covered at 375
for 40 minutes

Not exactly a quick cook, but very yummy and filling. I was a little concerned that Nick might protest the twang without some major kind of sweetening, but he loved the taste. This one will be repeated in the future.

Lunch was an attempt to use up some leftovers from the night before, and it worked

A Thomas Lite multigrain English muffin spread with red pepper hummus, topped with leftover roast vegetables and mozzarella cheese , then baked at 400 for 10 minutes. Mini roast veggie pizzas ! I was out of wraps, so these worked just fine.

Today begins a celebration of one of the eight holidays in my spiritual tradition and I wanted to get the shopping and chopping done early so Saturday would be totally free for fun. We did our grocery shopping in the evening and grabbed a quick dinner out. I had a barbecue chicken sandwich and was reminded of my love hate relationship with barbecue sauce. I love the taste, but it gives me heartburn almost instantly. I should have grabbed soup or salad instead.

8 comments:

Kristina said...

Amazing! As a habitual dieter, I had never even given thought to what my body was lacking nutrition wise. Only keeping it from gaining. And by doing so, I gave it even LESS nutrition. No longer, now that I know how to eat better.....but I like reading your blog and seeing the diff foods I can try. And I just KNEW you had a dream about Keifer Sutherland! lol
Love what the evening primrose oil has done for your son. And LOVE the veggie pizzas......going to make those!

Julie said...

Thanks for all the great info!! My daughter is 17 and has pcos and is on meds for it.

Diane Fit to the Finish said...

I had never even heard of keifer. You are amazing with all of the foods you have introduced me to. And the way you put together such healthy foods is so impresive.

I hope you have a great weekend.

spunkysuzi said...

I have actually used kefir especially after being on anti-biotics! Now you've got me thinking i might just do it again :)
I have soaked my grains before but didn't really see any difference plus i'm not always that organized to remember to do it!
Thanks as always for a great post.

Texasmom1974 said...

I love kefir! Also, I suffer from PCOS and many doctors were unhelpful. It took a lot of research on my own to discover how to help myself and how to arm myself with information when seeing doctors. It has made a world of difference.

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Laila said...

Kefir is great for getting your probiotics, but I heard that we who have PCOS should steer clear of dairy. Other fermented foods and kombucha are better alternativesoon for us. Just wanted to share that. I do miss my yogurt!