When it comes to improving your health, ingesting a bunch of bacteria is probably not the first thing that comes to mind, but, depending on the type, some bacteria actually have some impressive benefits for your body. Certain strains of bacteria, known as probiotics, play an important role in the way our bodies function. The most common of these strains are known as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which are naturally found in our bodies, and aid our immune system and digestive system, as well as treat ailments such as diarrhea, lactose intolerance, and skin ailments – pretty cool right?
So, where do you find these special little guys? There are actually several ways to get a healthy dose of the probs? Fermented Foods!!! Miso soup, made from fermented beans, rice, or barley, is one popular source of probiotics, but my personal favorite is Kefir Water or Kefirade. We take fresh coconut water straight from the coconut, then add a kefir culture to it. The culture eats some of the sugar and produces CO2 (sparkly) and Lactobacilli. This makes it a sort of Coconut Water Champagne without the alcohol. We make and sell it like that at our restaurant or we mix it with our amazing ginger lemonade to make our own Kefirade. Yummy! And, of course, our famous Sauerkraut is another excellent natural source of antibiotics. You can buy jars of it in two flavors “Pink Passion” or “Delightfully Dill”. And almost every plate you order at Leaf comes with a little sauerkraut!
We also make our own Kombucha in multiple flavors, which is another great source of probiotics. Kombucha tea not only tastes great, but it also helps boost your energy and detoxify your body and makes a great pick-me-up as an alternative to your morning coffee. Kombucha has been brewed for centuries, but has only recently started to gain popularity in Western markets Leaf Organics Restaurant in Culver City is one of the most pro probiotic restaurants anywhere! I even teach courses in Fermentation (check out our website at www.leaforganics.com)
When it comes to health, not all bacteria are created equal, so try out some probiotic foods and start to enjoy the benefits yourself.