How to Make Kombucha, a Naturally Fermented Health Drink

Kombucha is considered to be a health drink because it contains natural bacterias that can help replenish the bacterial balance in the colon. The kombucha itself is the yeast/bacteria combination which is formed into what is called a ‘SCOBY’ or Symbiotic Colony of Yeast and Bacteria. The SCOBY looks like a slimy pancake; some people refer to it as the ‘mother.’

GT Kombucha

The ‘mother’ kombucha culture is what is used to make your own kombucha batches at home, in the same way that people brew their own beer. The kombucha drink will also become ‘fizzy’ when fermented, but the alcohol content is extremely minimal.

You can start your own kombucha culture by buying a container of GT Kombucha Drink from any WholeFoods store. Drink enough of the liquid to leave about 1/4 inside the glass; leave out at room temperature with the cap off but covered in cloth. In about one week, you will see your very own SCOBY pancake floating on top and you are ready to start fermenting!

All of the details on how to make your own Kombucha at home are detailed in the above video, filmed at my friend’s organic farm in Maui, Hawaii. Here is a brief set of directions which I received when I purchased my SCOBY online through Dom’s Kefir Grains:

Directions for Kombucha:

1. Prepare tea with 4 teaspoons of conventional loose tea or 4 teabags in 4 cups of boiling water. Steep for 5 minutes. (Green tea, black tea or a combination is suitable).

2. Strain tea in an 8-cup glass jar and dissolve 1/3 cups sugar (either raw sugar or organic refined white sugar).

3. Let sweetened tea cool to room temperature, then pour kombucha ‘mother’ with the solution in which she was stored.

4. Place a clean cloth or paper napkin over the mouth of the jar and secure in place with an elastic rubber band.

5. Ferment, leaving undisturbed, for 7-12 days at room temperature range of 19C – 25C (66F – 79F).

6. Strain kombucha tea and repeat the whole process.

As for how much kombucha to drink daily to enjoy it’s health benefits, I would recommend about 1-2 cups per day or 250ml- 500ml daily. It’s a nice refreshing drink to enjoy on a hot day, and the natural bacteria will help with digestion and even can help stimulate the bowels, thus avoiding constipation. Kombucha can help lessen any overgrowth of candida and is good for anyone suffering from intestinal parasites. If you are addicted to pop or soft drinks, and are looking for a fizzy drink that is still considered healthy, kombucha is the drink for you.

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Visions of the Big Island, Hawaii

Take a minute to enjoy the most amazing sights of Hawaii – the Big Island up close and personal.

There are 2 pages of pictures here so be sure to check out them all!

The aquaponics farm can be found at friendlyaquaponics.com. Be sure to check out their farm tour every Saturday on the Big Island of Hawaii. It is pretty amazing to see and not so hard to do yourself… The lettuce and taro growing from the trays looked pretty perfect and the best part is that there are no chemicals used! The fish in the system fertilize the water through their waste, a completely natural process with no depletion of minerals in the soils. This system could be the future of farming as we can continue to grow healthy food while giving Mother Earth time to regenerate and renew!

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Visions of Maui, Hawaii

Finally, some pics to share my from time in Maui, Hawaii! For one week, I stayed with my friends in Hana on their organic permaculture farm – it was so great simply harvesting our food every day, eating from the land and living so in tune with the earth! At that time, we had plenty of wild edible greens and fresh herbs so we made beautiful salads every day. We also had a lot of papaya and liliquoi – the Hawaiian passion fruit – my favorite! One day we even made fresh liliquoi juice concentrate…so much fun and yummy too!

I also taught Green Smoothie Classes in Wailea and gave individual Iridology sessions there as well. The response was overwhelming, and I was so happy to see people interested in their health, nutrition and natural healing. Hawaii is a fantastic destination for a healthy holiday and Maui especially has a lot to offer for raw foods and organic farming!

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Images of Natural, Healthy Hawaii…

An abundance of natural, healthy foods just waiting for you in Hawaii 🙂 Check pictures of the raw foods available, healthy restaurants, organic farming, aquanponics, vegan and vegetarian foods, local eateries, fresh fruits, farmers markets and even green smoothies.

All great reasons to go to Hawaii for a healthy holiday!

For 2 weeks of my time in Hawaii, I had a nice family vacation with my parents, sister, brother-in-law and nieces. We satyed at a posh condo villa place – huge resort, full of tourists, and I couldn’t help but think what a perfect place this would be for a detox fasting spa. It’s ideal really, with beach, sun, pools, massage, nice views, relaxing time – if they offered a fasting program here I would totally do it!

Maybe in a few years the rest of the world will be ready for cleansing…certainly more and more people could use it!

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Life on an Organic Farm in Hana Maui, Hawaii – Video Tour!

I’ve got 7 clips up on youtube showing all the fun we had on the farm in Hana Maui, Hawaii! Check them out – I’ve got farm shots, chicken shots, unidentifiable bug shots, goat shots, pond swimming and a general tour of the farm. And, coming soon…the full how-to video on making kombucha at home! Enjoy and let me know what you think!

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Raw Food Restaurants and Healthy Options in Maui, Hawaii

With a wonderful variety of fresh tropical fruits and amazing veggies and greens, Hawaii is a fantastic holiday destination for raw food enthusiasts. The island of Maui is a popular spot for tourists and has a well-established raw food community as well.

Joy's place in Kihei, Maui - great spot for a health feed!

Joy\’s place in Kihei, Maui – great spot for a health feed!

There are 3 main restaurants serving raw food dishes in Maui. Perhaps the most established restaurant serving raw food in Maui is called Joy’s in Kihei. It is a small place with a nice friendly atmosphere and offers both eat-in and take-away options. Joy is a wonderfully warm and kind woman and is genuinely interested in serving healthy, delicious foods. Some of her dishes include a live wrap with ginger sesame dressing, a nut burger in collard greens, peppermint cacao truffles, live coconut chocolate ice cream, and green smoothies made to order. Joy’s is open Monday to Saturday, 8:30am – 3:30pm.

Joy showing one of her yummy creations

Joy showing one of her yummy creations

Another store serving raw foods is Mana Foods in Paia, on the road to Hana. Mana is a natural foods store also selling health foods, produce and fresh juices, and has a case of fresh raw foods for take-away every day. Jason, their raw food chef, is known best for his eggless egg salad, carrot ginger soup and sesame miso nori rolls. Other Mana favorites include their key lime pie, strawberry cheesecake and hazel fudge brownies. Mana Foods is open 7 days from 8:30am – 8:30pm. There is no eat-in service available.

Love the beard.. Scott at Alive & Well, Maui

Love the beard.. Scott at Alive & Well, Maui

Finally there is Alive and Well in Kahului which serves pre-prepared raw foods in their take-away case. Their options include a thin slice pizza, raw cole slaw and chocolate cherry torta.

Checking out a local market near Lahaina, Maui

Checking out a local market near Lahaina, Maui

Fresh farmer’s markets are a great source of local fruits and vegetables and are usually open a few days per week at various locations around the island. There are also a few locations of Jamba Juice around Maui, a similar chain to Boost Juice serving fresh juice and wheatgrass shots. A Whole Foods supermarket is due to open in Kahului in January 2010 which will be a great option for salads, juices and raw food take-aways.

Plan to have rawesome time in Maui!

This article was published in Living Raw magazine in Australia.

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Detox Craze – Is it good, bad or just hype?

Juicing is a great way to detox the body, mind & spirit

Juicing is a great way to detox the body, mind & spirit

Everyone these days seems to either be on a detox, just done a detox or is planning a detox. People are talking about the ‘Master Cleanse,’ fasting, cleansing and colonics like never before. Is it normal or even healthy for someone to consider not eating for a few days up to a week? Will there be any lasting benefits? Is it something you should be doing?

Ultimately only you can answer these questions. Personally I have been doing detox programs and different types of cleanses and fasts for the last 12 years, and I think it is the best thing I have even done for my body. Every time I do a cleanse I feel healthier, more in balance, lighter, purified of negative thoughts, more spiritual and much more in tune with myself. I have done 1 day, 28 days and everything in between, always testing the limits of what these programs can do so I can better help my clients.

BUT I don’t think fasting is for everyone.

If you are very stressed, toxic or sick, it can be a big shock to your body to go right into a cleanse, and you could end up doing more harm than good. I think it is always best to go gently into these programs, allowing your body time to build its vitamin and mineral reserve so it has all the elements it needs for healing.

If you want to try a detox program but prefer to get a feel of it for yourself at home first, I would suggest trying a 3-day fruit only diet. For 3 days, try to eat nothing but fresh fruits, including sweet fruits like pineapple, apple, papaya and banana as well as savory fruits like cucumber, tomato, bell pepper and zucchini. This is a great mini-cleanse and can be done at any time, without having to pay a lot of money or invest a lot of time to start feeling the results. If after 3 days you still feel good, you can continue for 5 or even 7 days. After 7 days of eating only fruit, I always feel stronger, healthier and better in every way. I lose a few unwanted pounds, my skin becomes clearer, my hair shines more and my bowel movements become so healthy, easy and regular!!

Eventually you might want to consider doing a full Master Cleanse or another fast or detox. In my opinion, doing a cleanse is a great way to allow the body to naturally catch up and clear out any excess toxic buildup. But the benefits only last if you change your diet and lifestyle after the cleanse and eat better foods, living a more natural, whole and pure lifestyle long-term.

If you do a detox, be sure to avoid too much retox!

If you have any specific medical conditions, please consult your medical doctor before doing any type of cleanse.

This article written by Jennifer Thompson on 27 July, 2009 for woman.ca

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Healing – Sharing – Flowering – Transformation – Change

Blossoming, Healing, Living

Blossoming, Healing, Living

These were my Tarot cards that came up on the Osho Zen Tarot today (no joke!) and so I knew it must be time to update the website, finally. I’ve been under the radar for awhile, out of touch with updating my websites, but not for lack of content, just lack of a positive perspective perhaps. I’ve had a very rough time in my life the last several months and I have fought hard both physically and emotionally to pull through it. Amazingly enough, I found that I was able to keep to about an 80% raw food diet despite everything, and for that I am so grateful because really, in times of stress, your body needs good nutrition more than any other time. At the moment I am back to about 90% raw, and working to get closer and closer to 100% every day.

We will all face challenges involving pain and suffering in our lives, and we must remember to take care of ourselves and feed our bodies well during those times.

Forgiveness is a Blessing!

Forgiveness is a Blessing!

The transformation and change part stem from the ability to forgive those who have hurt me during this process. It is important to note that forgiveness is not at all a sign of weakness; it is merely part of the ‘letting go’ process. We will never truly heal if we do not find a way to forgive those who have hurt us. And forgiving ourselves is equally as important. I will not lose my faith in human kindness!! There so many more people who have inspired and motivated me through life than those who have disappointed me!

I continue to surround myself with positive energy and kind-hearted souls.

I plan to do another fast/cleanse again soon and hope that I can transition to 100% raw food again after the cleansing. We will see how I go. In the meantime, I have been enjoying a wonderful morning smoothie inspired by my lovely Hawaiian friends Zeoc, Jen and Micah. You should definitely give this one a try…

In a blender combine:

Frozen chopped bananas
Fresh pineapple and papaya
Spirulina powder
Ground flax seeds
Goat’s yogurt
Probiotics (2-3 capsules opened)
Coconut Oil

Blend and enjoy – Yum-bo!

Can also add bee pollen, honey, flax seed oil, hemp oil, or liquid mineral supplements.

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