Thursday, September 18, 2014

Tatertot Brand Potato Starch...New & Improved!

You guys know me, I love playing around with stuff.

I have a Jack Lalanne Power Juicer that I use every summer when I have too many carrots and beets...ever have a glass of fresh squeezed carrot juice?  You can't beat it!

I got to reading some comments somewhere from a young lady extolling the virtues of raw potato juice, she said it was full of crazy-good stuff and used for centuries as a cure for nearly everything, even effective against cancer!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Antibiotic Pioneers

In 1928, Scottish scientist Alexander Fleming was fiddling around with a strange mold he found growing on a Petri dish. This mold was known as Penicillium notatum and after an accidental exposure of the Penicillium to a Petri dish containing Staphylococcus (an infectious microbe), Fleming discovered that the exposure resulted in destruction of the Staphylococcus. This was an amazing discovery and he soon learned he now had the power of life and death over a wide range of Gram-positive bacteria that had been stymieing doctors for centuries!  Fleming toyed with the moldy medicine for well over a decade with little success in making a commercially viable, purified form of his invention: penicillin.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

50 Shades of Gross

Haha, had to share this.  I know it's bad form to just cut and paste what others have written, so I will try to paraphrase from here as best I can. 

The author of this short piece, Katherine Dahlhausen, has dug up 50 "germ-phobic" tactics people use to avoid getting nasty microbes on them.  I'll admit, I still do a few of these.  I think that the underlying point here, though, is that we shouldn't have to be so 'anal' about avoiding germs.  In fact, avoiding all of these stray microbes has probably led us to the shape we are in.  Here's her many do you do?  

Monday, September 8, 2014

Antibiotics and Antibiotic Resistance

The antibiotic era is not confined to modern day. Tetracycline, an antibiotic first isolated from Actinobacteria in the dirt, is a cheap antibiotic that has been used to treat pneumonia, acne, and other infections.  It was first discovered in the 1940’s and by the 1950’s, tetracycline-resistant bacteria had quickly emerged.[7] Ironically, tetracycline has been isolated from the bones of ancient skeletons from Sudan dating back to the year 350 AD and late Roman period skeletons from ancient Egypt. The tetracycline in these instances is presumed to have been introduced by the diet or through the use of botanical herbs or healing soils used as medicine, but no trace of tetracycline resistance has been found in these areas after thousands of years of consumption[8].

Friday, September 5, 2014

RS2 vs RS3 Put to the (Gut) Test! Part 2

I love all of the gut tests available to us now!  The two that have gotten the most attention are American Gut and uBiome.  Neither require a doctor's orders and are relatively cheap ($99 and $89 respectively).  uBiome gets you a report in about 6 weeks, while AmGut takes 6 months.

I think both tests are far from perfect, as Mr. Heisenbug recently discussed:

Well, we’re certainly still left with the question of which technique — and thus which service — provides a more useful and “accurate” accounting of your gut microbiota. Ideally, I’d like to see a dialogue between American Gut and uBiome so that we can get a better understanding of all this and get at what’s really going on. A comparison study might also reveal that perhaps something other than the extraction technique is creating the discrepancy, such as differences in transport or collection methods.

RS2 vs RS3 Put to the (Gut) Test! Part 1

I have a bit of exciting news for those of you who are 'gut bug nerds' like me.  I just got back my uBiome results for a sample taken after 6 weeks of 'real food only.'  No potato starch or inulin, no probiotics, no supplements of any kind...just food.

But first, some background I thought you might like.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Beet Kvass

Summertime at my house means beet kvass.

Got probiotics?

Kvass is the forerunner to a host of water fermented probiotic drinks such as water kefir and kombucha.  Kvass was traditionally made with rye bread (sometimes flavored with berries, raisins, or birch sap) in Russia and is still popular in places with a Russian influence.  Somewhere along the line, some poor sucker who couldn't afford bread made kvass with a beet.