100 Trillion Reasons to Eat Cultured Foods

Cultured food for health

As Donna Schwenk writes in her latest book Cultured Food For Health, our body is constantly remaking itself. Our intestines are being replaced every two to three days, our liver every five months, and the surface layer of our skin every two to three weeks. To me this means that self healing is truly possible if we feed ourselves the right foods and tune into the powerful mind body connection, anything is possible.

In Cultured Food For Health, Donna shares her healing story of how discovering the power of cultured foods enabled her to heal her body and reverse the diabetes and other health issues that plagued both herself and her family. Now, feeling healthy and vibrant again she is able to share with the world the healing powers of cultured foods and how they can help you to heal and love life again.

We are made up of a hundred trillion bacteria and if you treat them and feed them what they need you can heal your body and feel fantastic.

“Good bacteria are a mighty force inside of you”, yet you must strengthen and increase their numbers in order to stay healthy. When we have enough of the good bacteria they break down our food properly, keep our immune system strong and fight bad bacteria. The example that Donna shares in her book is that “cows can’t break down the cellulose in plants on their own, but they need to in order to get the nutrients from it. So bacteria do it for them, breaking the food into simple sugars that the cows’ bodies can use. This gives them all the energy they need to thrive.”

Good bacteria is what helps us to absorb minerals and vitamins and produce enzymes that break down proteins, carbohydrates, fiber and fats.

When we are born we are infused with bacteria and this lays the foundation for how our gut and immune system will function throughout our life.

We are learning through research that our diets have changed so dramatically over the past 50 years that we are not adequately getting the range of healthy foods and good bacteria that we need to thrive and feel healthy. Most of us now eat processed foods and look to simple, easy and take out meals due to our hectic lifestyle. These processed foods can wreck havoc on our gut and good bacteria which then causes inflammation which leads to disease.

The good bacteria in our gut not only enables us to have a healthy body, but a healthy mind as well. Ninety percent of the body’s serotonin- the feel good hormone- is produced in our gut, so creating a healthy digestive tract, one full of healthy bacteria is essential for a good mood. Links between depression, anger and anxiety and now being linked to the health of our microbiome or gut flora, so it’s imperative that we create a healthy digestive tract by replenishing the healthy bacteria that lives in our gut.

be alive

Why Eat Cultured Foods?

Cultured foods create and promote healthy bacteria and microbes which over power bad bacteria in our body. When we have an over abundance of good bacteria we are able to break down our food and transport it into vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that nourish our cells.

Combining a food or beverage with a starter culture ( which is a collection of live, healthy bacteria and yeasts) sets the conditions to make those bacteria and yeasts grow and thrive. These bacteria thrive, over power any bad bacteria and preserves the food and makes it super rich in probiotics.

Cultured foods have been around for thousands of years and was how foods were kept without refrigeration. Cultured or fermented foods enabled people to preserve their food throughout the seasons and allowed them to eat a nutrient dense diet.

Probiotics– eating cultured foods and drinking fermented drinks will introduce beneficial bacteria into your digestive tract and help slow and even reverse some diseases.

Absorption– having the proper ratio of good bacteria in your gut helps you absorb the nutrients from your food.

Preservation– fermented foods last much longer than store bought foods all while keeping their nutrients that many canned goods lose over time.

Inexpensive– eating healthy can be expensive, but when you make your own cultured foods at home you save money.

The Trilogy of Cultured Foods- why you need the power of three!

Kefir: a cultured milk product that contains more powerful probiotics than yogurt. Homemade kefir contains 30-56 different strains of bacteria opposed to the 7-10 found in yogurt. The bacteria in kefir is naturally occurring whereas most of the yogurts available today have been pasteurized, which means that heat is used to kill off bacteria before good microbes are added back in. One serving of kefir has as much as 35 percent of the daily recommended allowance of protein, and contains vitamins A, B, C, and K and phosphorous. It is loaded with enzymes which help you to absorb more nutrients from your food and is virtually sugar and lactose free.

Health Benefits of Kefir:

  • reduces allergies
  • aids in digestion
  • eliminates constipation
  • treats yeast infections
  • balance blood sugar
  • lowers blood sugar
  • replenishes the body with good bacteria

Kombucha: a bubbly fermented tea that has been around for thousands of years. Kombucha helps to stabilize blood sugar, is an a natural analgesic and helps to remove toxins from the liver. It contains bacteria that has special probiotic yeasts that cannot be killed by antibiotics.

Health Benefits of Kombucha:

  • helps with weight loss
  • supports the immune system
  • prevents kidney stones
  • assists in detox
  • boosts energy

Cultured Vegetables: are vegetables submerged in water with an added culture which enables you to get billions of probiotics in only one spoonful.

Health Benefits of Cultured Vegetables:

  • top diarrhea and constipation
  • support adrenal glands
  • aids in weight loss
  • reduces candida
  • combats colds and flu
  • reduces inflmmation

As Donna writes in her book Cultured Food For Life she started to feel better when she started to make and eat her own kefir, but the true magic and healing happened when she ate all three cultured foods that she talks about in her book: kefir, kombucha and cultured vegetables.

Your Health and Cultured Foods

We are a society of disease, yet the greatest medicine of all is to teach people how not to need it. Donna Schwenk does this in her book Cultured Food For Health.


If you know anyone with any of these conditions please tell them that they can be helped and even reversed by making and eating your own cultured foods.

  1. Acid Reflux
  2. Acne
  3. Allergies
  4. Asthma
  5. Autism
  6. Cancer/ Chemotherapy
  7. Colds and Flu
  8. Colitis
  9. Crohn’s
  10. Depression
  11. Diabetes
  12. Fibromyalgia
  13. Food Allergies
  14. High Blood Pressure
  15. Irritable Bowel Syndrom
  16. Kidney Stones
  17. Obesity
  18. Ulcers
  19. Yeast Infections

After reading Donna’s book I am eager to dive into making my own cultured foods and I know you will be too! She has recipes on how to make basic kefir, kombucha, and cultured vegetables. Then she takes it up a notch and includes many more recipes like kefir pancakes, soups, dips, appetizers and  even desserts. Plus if you visit her website you can get all the needed items to make the trilogy of cultured foods along with recipes, how to videos and more.

Check out my homemade sauerkraut- it’s delicious!!kraut

For more information or to order your copy of Culture Food For Health click here.




About the Author

Written by: Shirley Plant
Shirley Plant is a nutritionist and the author of Finally… Food I Can Eat, a dietary guide and cookbook for people with food allergies, and those looking for healthy, tasty recipes. Shirley offers dietary counselling and menu planning through Delicious Alternatives.

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One Comment

  1. Would like your recipe for sauerkraut and do you need a starter? Thank you, Judy Wood

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