What’s New ?

Hello World!

Whats new? What’s new with you, what’s new with me?

Its been a crazy year.  I’ve had ups, downs and all arounds. New things happening, I’m going back to school, I’m adding to my resume 🙂

This website will be changing soon, I will keep some things going, but moving into more ‘healing’.

for now I shall leave you with a powerful message I recently came across…..enjoy

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Kombucha – Recipe

Making your own Kombucha – at home

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Equipment:

  • Stock pot
  • 1-gallon jar or two 2 quart glass jars
  • Tightly woven cloth (like clean napkins, tea towels, coffee filters, or paper towels)
  • Bottles: Six 16-oz bottles with lids, 6 swing-top bottles, or clean soda bottles
  • Small funnel

Special note avoid prolonged contact between the Kombucha and metal both during and after brewing.  This can affect the flavor of your Kombucha and weaken the SCOBY over time. 

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups water, boiled & 4 cups cold (see instructions)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 6+ tea bags (Organic Black or Green do very well)
  • 1 1/3 cup starter tea from previous Kombucha batch or store-bought Kombucha (unpasteurized, neutral-flavored)
  • 1 SCOBY per fermentation jar, homemade or purchased online

Instructions:

Made a strong sweet tea base.  Boil 8 cups water on stove top, place your container on stove to preheat your glass jar.  Place 1 cup sugar and your tea bags into container.  Once water is sufficiently boiled, place into container, mix with wooden spoon (as plastic leaches impurities).  Stir the tea until the sugar has dissolved.  Allow sweet tea to cool completely, leave tea bags in during this time.

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Once the tea has completely cooled.  Add in your pure filtered cold water.  Ive used PH balanced water (Cerra Water) and or PureWater for clean clean water.  Please remove the tea bags as you do not want your SCOBY growing on foreign objects.

Once the tea is done, and the tea bags removed, slide in the Kombucha starter and the SCOBY.  The starter tea makes the liquid acidic, which prevents unfriendly bacteria from taking up residence in the first few days of the fermentation process.

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The SCOBY seen above is from my previous batch of Kombucha, you by no means need this amount.  I just happened to be making 4 full batches and therefore used up all my SCOBY by dividing it up.  Please ensure you hands and work surface are clean, that should go without saying.

Once the elixir is done, be sure to place a clean tightly-woven cloth, coffee filter, or paper towels across mouth of the jar to keep the insects out of the brew.  I happen to have lovely white cotton cloths and large elastics.

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Place in a quiet, darker area.  I know ones who place it in a cabinet.  I personally place mine in my laundry room on a little table.  The combined warmth and room temperature is perfect.  Plus its away from direct sunlight and wont be jostled around.  I personally go in every day and take a little peek and say positive loving things to my brew.    Ferment for 7 to 10 days, checking the Kombucha and SCOBY periodically.

Yes it will look a little alien as this formation begins to happen.  Its not unusual to have the SCOBY float to the top, bottom or even sideways during the fermentation process.  You will also notice the Mother SCOBY and Baby SCOBY growing together.  Do not fret if you see brown stringy bits floating beneath the SCOBY, sediment collecting at the bottom, or bubbles collecting around the SCOBY.  This is all normal and signs of healthy fermentation.  The tannins in the tea will also show in the SCOBY, no need to worry.  Only worry if you see BLACK MOLD appearing, then you will need to toss everything out and start again, but this is very very rare.

This picture below is of my brew I started yesterday.  See my little SCOBY growing 🙂

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Once the days have past and you are ready to test your Kombucha, take a small straw (long) and place along side, take a little taste test and see if you enjoy the taste.  When it has reached the balance of sweetness and tartness that is pleasant to you, the Kombucha is ready to bottle.

next Post:  Bottling Kombucha (with pics)

Benefits of Kombucha

the Many Benefits of Kombucha

  1. Detoxification

Detoxification produces healthy livers and aides  in cancer prevention. One of kombucha’s greatest health benefits is its ability to detox the body. It is rich in many of the enzymes and bacterial acids your body produces and/or uses to detox your system, thus reducing your pancreatic load and easing the burden on your liver. Kombucha is very high in Glucaric acid, and recent studies have shown that glucaric acid helps prevent cancer.

I know ones in my immediate circle of friends who have had cancer and fought it into remission without any chemo or radiation therapy. I also know ones that have had Liver disease and have reversed this and gained back a healthy liver.  How?  They warded it off by detoxing their lives (going 100% organic, removing chemical cleaners and agents in their home, changing their diet to be at least 80% raw or fermented, etc.)  Central to the detoxification process was drinking Kombucha regularly. Even Alexander Solzhenitsyn, the recently deceased Russian author and nobel-prize winner, in his autobiography, claimed that kombucha tea cured his stomach cancer during his internment in soviet labor camps. (And because of this testimony, President Reagan used Kombucha to halt the spread of his cancer in 1987. You’ll note he didn’t die until 2004, and that was from old age, NOT cancer.)

Consumption of Kombucha has been associated with lower cancer rates.  Researchers believe it increases the immune system’s anticancer defenses.   It may prevent cancer proliferation at early stages of tumor growth due to its glucuronic, lactic, and acetic acid content, as well as its antibiotic compounds.  It may have anticarcinogenic effects especially for hormone-dependent tumors.

Cell studies suggest it may be useful for prostate cancer treatment and prevention.  It’s also been studied as an anticancer agent against human lung, osteosarcoma, and renal cancer cell lines.

2) Joint Care

Kombucha contains glucosamines, a strong preventive and treatment all forms of arthritis. Glucosamines increase synovial hyaluronic acid production. Hyaluronic acid functions physiologically to aid preservation of cartilage structure and prevent arthritic pain, with relief comparable to NSAIDs and advantage over glucocorticoids. Hyaluronic acid enables connective tissue to bind moisture thousands of times its weight and maintains tissue structure, moisture, lubrication and flexibility and lessens free radical damage, while associated collagen retards and reduces wrinkles.  I personally had bone spore growths, along with 3rd stage degenerative arthritis in my neck, I was diagnosed June 2013 when I started on changes in my life, of which included drinking Kombucha.  Now, Sept 2015, my spores are gone, my arthritis in the neck is gone, there is clearly marked calcium growth in a positive way on my bones and my joints are nicely lubricating.

3) Antioxidants

Kombucha contains abundant antioxidants including vitamins E, C, beta-carotene, and other carotenoids.  Like black tea, kombucha also contains polyphenols and other compounds with antioxidant powers.  But because it is fermented, kombucha is much more powerful than plain tea.  Its antioxidant activity has been found to be 100 times higher than vitamin C and 25 times higher than vitamin E.  For that reason drinking traditional Kombucha may help cure chronic illnesses caused by oxidative stress.

4) Aid in Digestion and leads to a Healthy Gut

Because it’s naturally fermented with a living colony of bacteria and yeast, Kombucha is a probiotic beverage. This has a myriad of benefits such as improved digestion, fighting candida (harmful yeast) overgrowth, mental clarity, and mood stability. As such, it’s noted for reducing or eliminating the symptoms of fibromyalgia, depression, anxiety, etc.  My husband who does have a mood disorder, drinks my home brewed Kombucha regularly and his mood has stabilized.  Personally my guts feel better and better daily.

4) Immune Boosting

Kombucha is extraordinarily anti-oxidant rich, and you all know the benefits of anti-oxidants for boosting your immune system and energy levels.  After a day or two of constant drinking this elixir, you will begin to feel healthier and happier.  Like drinking an energy drink without the sugars and harmful chemicals, cause all this is a natural chemical baby.

5) Weight Loss

Kombucha helps balance the metabolism.  Animal studies show the tea may cause weight loss by encouraging calorie restriction.  Data from a study in 2005 showed evidence that kombucha improves metabolism and limits fat accumulation. Though we need to see more studies before we can confirm these results, it makes sense that kombucha supports weight loss since it’s high in acetic acid (just like apple cider vinegar is) and polyphenols, which are proven to help increase weight loss.  I am personally excited about this one, as I am working daily at weight loss and just to generally feel great every day.

6) Diabetes

Research dating back to 1929 found Kombucha can decrease blood sugar levels.  More recent animal studies report that kombucha significantly reduces blood sugar levels in diabetic rats.   Another study suggested kombucha may be considered a candidate for the treatment and prevention of diabetes.

7) Kidney Toxicity

Kombucha may help eliminate kidney damage caused by environmental pollutants and may be beneficial to patients suffering from renal impairment.  Kombucha has also been used to prevent calcification in the kidney and may prevent the formation of kidney stones.

8) Anemia

Organic acids found in Kombucha convert trivalent iron compounds from plant sources to divalent iron ions.  This makes iron from plant sources more available to the body.  And vitamin C in kombucha enhances iron absorption.   Researchers suggest Kombucha is particularly recommended for elderly people and vegetarians because it enhances the absorption of iron and helps prevent iron deficiency.

9) Asthma

Daily Kombucha may help asthma patients.  It contains significant amounts of theophylline, a bronchodilator.  The treatment dose of theophylline is 0.18-1.0 g daily.  Just one cup of Kombucha contains about 1.44 mg.

10) Antibiotic Resistant Infections

Kombucha contains strong antibacterials to combat infectious diseases such as diptheria, scarlet fever, influenza, typhoid, paratyphoid fever, and dysentery.  Its high total acidity makes it effective against Helicobacter pylori, Salmonella typhimurium, Staphylococcus aureus, and Bacillus cereus.  It’s been suggested that kombucha may be an effective alternative to synthetic antimicrobials that are becoming increasingly ineffective.

 

 

References

[1] Ilmara Vina et al, “Current Evidence on Physiological Activity and Expected Health Effects of Kombucha Fermented Beverage.” J Med Food 17 (2) 2014, 179–188 DOI: 10.1089/jmf.2013.0031

[2] Adriani L, Mayasari N, Kartasudjana RA: “The effect of feeding fermented kombucha tea on HLD, LDL and total cholesterol levels in the duck bloods.” Biotechnol Anim Husb 2011;27:1749–1755.

[3] Banerjee D, Hassarajani SA, Maity B, Narayan G, Bandyopadhyay SK, Chattopadhyay S: Comparative healing property of kombucha tea and black tea against indomethacin-induced gastric ulceration in mice: possible mechanism of action. Food Funct 2010;1:284–293.

[4] Shenoy C: “Hypoglycemic activity of bio-tea in mice.” Indian J Exp Biol 2000;38:278–279.

[5] Aloulou A, Hamden K, Elloumi D, Ali MB, Hargafi K, Jaouadi B, Ayadi F, Elfeki A, Ammar E: Hypoglycemic and antilipidemic properties of kombucha tea in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. BMC Complement Altern Med 2012;12:63.

[6] Gharib OA: “Effects of kombucha on oxidative stress induced nephrotoxicity in rats.” Chin Med2009;4:23.

[7] Dufresne C, Farnworth E: “Tea, kombucha and health: a review.”  Food Res Int 2000;33:409–421.

[8] Dufresne C, Farnworth E: “Tea, kombucha and health: a review.”  Food Res Int 2000;33:409–421.

[9] Suhartatik N, Karyantina M, Marsono Y, Rahayu ES, Kuswanto KR: “Kombucha as anti hypercholesterolemic agent (in vitro study using SD rats).” Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference of Indonesian Society for Lactic Acid Bacteria (3rd IC- ISLAB): Better Life with Lactic Acid Bacteria: Exploring Novel Functions of Lactic Acid Bacteria, 2011, Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

[10] Pauline T, Dipti P, Anju B, Kavimani S, Sharma SK, Kain AK, Sarada SKS, Sai Ram M, Ilavazhagan G, Kumar D, Selvamurthy W: “Studies on toxicity; anti-stress and hepatoprotective properties of kombucha tea.” Biomed Environ Sci 2001;14:207–213.

[11] Jalil A, Amin D, Mohammad HF, Saeid H: “Protective effect of kombucha tea against acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity in mice: a biochemical and histopathological study.” Comp Clin Path 2012;21:1243–1248.

[12] Pasha C, Reddy G: “Nutritional and medicinal improvement of black tea by yeast fermentation.” Food Chem 2005;89:449–453.

[13] Jayabalan R, Marimuthu S, Swaminathan K: “Changes in content of organic acids and tea polyphenols during kombucha tea fermentation.” Food Chem 2007;102:392–398.

[14] Sriharia T, Arunkumarb R, Arunakaranb J, Satyanarayanac U: “Downregulation of signalling molecules involved in angiogenesis of prostate cancer cell line (PC-3) by kombucha (lyophilized).”Biomed Prev Nutr 2012;3:53–58.

[15] Talawat S, Ahantharik P, Laohawiwattanakul S, Premsuk A, Ratanapo S: “Efficacy of fermented teas in antibacterial activity.” Kasetsart J Nat Sci 2006;40:925–933.

[16] Mo H, Zhu Y, Chen Z: “Microbial fermented tea—a potential source of natural food preservatives.” Trends Food Sci Technol 2008;19:124–130.

 

Blogging, Baking & Brainstorming

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Its been over a year since I embarked on being a Virtual Assistant.  Ive had a few jobs here and there but nothing completely solid like I had hoped.  Ive found that many VA’s locally are having the same issues that I am having, so many people are going overseas or to other poverty stricken countries and paying $0.40c per hour of work – of which I would bill out at $15.00+ per hour.  Yes Im in Canada, yes I do speak fluent english and yes I have 15+ years experience as an Administrator on various levels in multiple industries.  That being said, many entrepreneaurs are still hiring people in counties like India, Philippines and many others.  Even trying to get hired from a US company is next to impossible as a Canadian.  So I will keep the site up and running, and continue to assist those who would like some help.

But what next?

Ive been pondering, what is it that I really love doing?

I mean really LOVE doing

Well I personally love cooking and baking and showing my love in my little creations.  So Im trying something new.  Im going to post here my latest endeavours and share with you my various loves of

Blogging, Baking and Brainstorming

I will share some recipes both baking and cooking as well as my latest LOVE – Kombucha.  See later post on this 🙂

Thanks for reading and hope you follow more of my posts 🙂

Kind regards,

Natasha

 

Rocks, Pebbles, Sand – Whats Important to You?

Rocks, Pebbles, Sand – What is Important for You?

Recently my husband and I have been reevaluating our life, our friends or so-called friends and things that just don’t fit in our jar anymore.  Have you heard the story? 

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The Story

There was a philosophy professor who was giving a lecture. In front of him he had a big glass jar. He started off by filling up the jar with the big rocks and when they reached the rim of the jar he held it up to the students and asked them if the jar was full. They all agreed, there was no more room to put the rocks in, it was full.

Is it full?

He then picked up a tub of small pebbles and poured these in jar so that they filled the space around the big rocks. “Is the jar full now?” he asked. The group of students all looked at each other and agreed that the jar was now completely full.

Is it really full?

The professor then picked up another container, this time it had sand in it. He poured the sand in between the pebbles and the rocks and once again he held up the jar to his class and asked if it was full. Once again the students agreed that the jar was full.

“Are you sure it’s full?” he asked. He finally picked up a bottle of water and tipped the water into the jar until it filled up all the remaining space. The students laughed.

Filling up your Life

The jar represents your life. The rocks are the important things that have real value – your family, your partner, your health, your children – things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter – like your job, house, car, clothes and so forth.

The sand is everything else – the small stuff.

Make room for the important things

If you fill the jar up first with the sand, you won’t have space for the pebbles or the rocks. The same goes for your life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Put your priorities in their place.  Know for a certain what your Rocks are, what your Pebbles are and then once those items are safely placed in the jar, you can fill up with the Sand and either make it all fit, or make those priorities fit first, and everything else after.  

Take care of the rocks first – the things that really matter.

Set your priorities.       The rest is just sand.

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