Amy Shah, MD, an Ivy League-trained, double board certified physician, is one of the few doctors who masterfully integrates mainstream medicine with Eastern thought and a mind-body approach. This week, we're thrilled to share Dr. Shah's expertise in a new series on total gut health. To learn more, head to her mindbodygreen course: The 7-Day Gut Reset: How To Get Your Digestion Back On Track In Just One Week.
You've probably heard a lot about probiotics, and all their gut-healing powers. But you should also know that you don't have to turn to probiotic supplements or even store-bought foods to reap the benefits. In fact, making your own naturally probiotic foods is surprisingly simple.
When I first started my gut-healing journey, I'd buy my natural fermented foods at health markets, in order to avoid all the added preservatives. Then I realized that sauerkraut and fermented vegetables are super easy (and cheap!) to make at home.
Here's the recipe I recommend:
- 1/2 cup salt (pickling salt recommended)
- 1 gallon water
- 3 pounds vegetable of choice (cucumbers, carrots, fennel and cabbage all work well)
- 2 cloves garlic (optional)
- 1 bunch fresh dill (optional)
1. Combine the salt and water in a pitcher, and stir until the salt has dissolved.
2. Rinse the vegetables thoroughly and cut them into spears or small chunks.
3. Place the garlic and dill in an air-tight jar.
4. Add the vegetables to the jar, on top of the garlic and herbs.
5. Pour in the salt-water mixture over the vegetables, completely covering them.
6. Set in a cool, dry place for approximately seven days. You'll know they're ready when they taste sour.
Dr. Amy Shah is a double board certified MD with training from Cornell, Columbia and Harvard Universities. She was named one of mindbodygreen's Top 100 Women In Wellness to Watch in 2015 and has been a guest on many national and local media shows. She helps busy people transform their health by reducing inflammation and eating more plants, utalizing the power of the microbiome to help digestion, natural hormone balance and food sensitivities. She is an expert on intermittent fasting for women and has a 2 week guided group program.