Trent: What you got in the Crock-Pot?
Me: Um…a soup…stew…stuff I can eat.
Tonight I’m #grateful that the ingredients in my “Things I Can Eat Stew” have grown. This one has navy beans and lentils (yay, prebiotics!); the old standbys of carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash and golden beets; green beans, a few peas, a little corn and, of course…collards! It all cooked up in some broth seasoned with my homemade immunity blend seasoning, which I made a second batch of the other day. At dinner time, I topped it with the red cabbage/beet/carrot kraut (yay probiotics!). #DomesticGoddess
I’m really excited that I’ve worked my way up to having fermented foods multiple times per day. This morning I had an egg, hash brown, avocado, and vegan mozzarella cheese (VioLife is really far superior in the land of Vegan cheese available locally) scramble topped with the carraway seed kraut. Mid-morning, I also had 6 oz of kefir. I am grateful for this progress. Remember when I tried with yogurt and almost thought I was dying again?! No? I do. Vividly. 😂
Anyway, this progress with food is an important part of #operationrecovery because I need to rebuild my gut, and “diet is one of the most powerful ways we can influence our microbiota.” Did you know that “what you eat for one meal can change the composition of your microbiome in 24 hours!?”✳️ So this time tomorrow, mine should have all new, stronger tiny white knight fighters, right?! 🤺⚔️🗡️
As it turns out, like with most things, there’s no easy way to just rebuild your microbiome. You can’t just take the probiotic supplement pills forever (although some people try). 💊 Because apparently those probiotics don’t actually take up residence in your gut. Sure, they do some good while they’re there, but then they pass on through. You really have to work it into your diet through fermented foods. And also, you need to feed the good guy bacteria that does live all day every day in your gut, and prebiotic foods (like those beans and lentils) “provide the food your permanent residents depend on to get by.”
It takes work and time. After all, “recent research shows that the effects of a course of antibiotics on the microbiome can be seen at least a year after taking antibiotics.”*️⃣ Some reports even say 4 years later, you can still see microbial changes in the gut courtesy of nuclear bomb (aka broad spectrum) antibiotics. That’s why they keep saying that even though I’ve now gotten to Week 9 without recurrence and even if I get to Week 12 “clinically cured,” I’ll be fighting for at least another 6 months before any real return to normalcy. Which I get. Intellectually. And because I can still feel it. All day every day in a variety of ways. But today is better than the last two, and the last few weeks are so better than the entire months of September, October, and November, so…
I’m overall grateful for progress. Here’s to 2021, and my new word is…HEALING.
✳️ Source: Cultured by Katherine Harmon Courage
*️⃣ Source: The Whole-Body Microbiome by Finlay and Finlay