Kombucha 101 – Fermented Sweet Tea

If you have found my Kombucha 101 page, you may have heard me talking about the concept of making fermented sweet tea with a SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast).  Kombucha tends to come up in many of my conversations with my friends, because I am excited about it!  Most people do not ferment their beverages anymore.  However, for centuries, traditional cultures have fermented their drinks and their food in order to increase the nutritive value and to protect the food from the wrong bacteria and yeast.

 

If you have plenty of the right bacteria and yeast, you decrease the chances of your food having the wrong kinds of bacteria and yeast.

Kombucha 101

How I Started my Kombucha Obsession

I have now been making kombucha for four going on five years.  My first SCOBY was given to me by a sweet friend (at the time, barely acquaintance) Claude while I was living in Italy.  I took the slick round mass of bacteria and yeast that she gave me and made up a batch of sweet tea.  I laid the SCOBY on top and waited!  It was fantastic being able to make my own fermented tea.

Why I Continue My Kombucha Obsession

If it was all about making some slightly vinegary tasting tea, then I would not have continued drinking or making fermented sweet tea.  Kombucha is so much more than a simple enjoyable drink.  Check out the amazing benefits below:

  • Immune boosting –> Jam packed with anti-oxidants
  • Contains glucaric acid –> Very important for healing common malformations of cells
  • Detoxes the body while supporting the liver
  • Filled with glucosamines –> Important for joints and arthritis
  • Contains gut healing probiotics

All sorts of fermented drinks have […]

Elderberry Tea Recipe – Reusing Elderberry Syrup Berries

Do you love elderberry syrup, but hate throwing away the used elderberries?  This this elderberry tea recipe is for you!

Elderberry Tea

Waste not, want not.  Why waste all those beautiful elderberries after you make your elderberry syrup?  Use them again by enjoying elderberry tea.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons organic elderberries
  • 8 ounces filtered water

Instructions

  1. Boil 8 ounces of water.

  2. Place 2 teaspoons of the organic elderberries into the water.

  3. Let sit 4-15 minutes depending on desired strength, add more elderberries if you'd like it stronger.

Recipe Notes

Since this will only use two teaspoons of your wet elderberries at a time, you can dry the used elderberries to keep using them as tea.  You have two options for drying your berries.

Drying Your Elderberries

Take the elderberries and place them in a dehydrator and dehydrate them until dry.

OR

Spread the berries across a jelly roll pan (the type with short edges) and turn your oven to its lowest setting.  Heat the elderberries until they are fully dry and store in a mason jar.

Supplies

Organic Elderberries - Check out Vitacost for better prices.
Dehydrator - if you purchase this, don't tell me . . . it will make me jealous
Mason Jars

 

I’m so I saved you from throwing out your elderberries!  That was a close call 😉  If you love me every so much more for saving you from this terrible deed, let me know!  Comment below or come over and visit me on my –> Facebook page.

Brooke Shambley
THE Boholistic Mom

Affiliate Disclosure

I am an Amazon Affiliate and the links included in this post (including some of the pictures) will take […]

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe – Home Remedies

Have you been thinking about trying your hand at making elderberry syrup?  Then this will be a great recipe to help you through your first attempt!  I tried a few other recipes and I was so frustrated with the instructions, my hope is that this recipe will make it all clear and help you get it right the first time!  Enjoy!

DIY Elderberry Syrup

Elderberries have been used through the ages to help people who are sick and need a boost.  Elderberry tonic, wine, and syrup have their place in history . . . and in our cupboards.  Use the recipe below to help you and your family build up their immunity and fight off any unwelcome visitors!

  • 4 cups filtered water
  • 1.5 cups organic elderberries
  • 2 teaspoons dried ginger ((or 2 tablespoons fresh))
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon ((or you can add in a cinnamon stick))
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered cloves
  • 1 cup raw honey ((local raw organic is best; organic is next best))
  1. Fill pot with 4 cups of filtered water and add elderberries, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Note: Do NOT add raw honey at this point.

  2. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 45 minutes to an hour.  The liquid will reduce by half.  Note:  Do NOT cover.

  3. Remove from heat and let the mixture cool.

  4. Pour the elderberry juice through a colander or strainer into a bowl.

  5. Save the elderberries!*

  6. Let the liquid cool almost completely to keep the raw honey from being heated.

  7. Mix the honey into the elderberry juice stirring until fully combined.

  8. Pour the mixture into mason jars or glass bottles.

  9. Store your DIY Elderberry Syrup in the refrigerator.

Adults can take one teaspoon daily for wellness and children 1/2 to a teaspoon. Increase […]

Headache Remedy List for Moms

Gradually, but surely, I hope to share the lists of remedies that I use personally with my Boholistic Mom followers.  Today, I am sharing with you a headache remedy list that will give you some great ideas for tackling situations when you feel your head might explode.  Some of these ideas work within the hour, some will are long term fixes and will take time.  You are in charge of your health and your wellness.  Find out what options there are from this headache remedy list that are not in a medicine bottle and give them a shot!

Headache Remedy List

Headache Remedy List – Natural Relief

  • Magnesium

Magnesium helps blood vessels relax and regulates your blood pressure.1  With all of the stress our bodies go through, most people are very deficient in magnesium.  Deficiencies in magnesium can cause major headaches, but even if you aren’t deficient, magnesium can be a quick relief to minor headaches.  I use –> Ancient Minerals Magnesium Gel.

  • Ginger Tea

Ginger tea is also vasodilator like magnesium, meaning it dilates your blood vessels allowing blood to pass through more easily.  When you have a pounding headache with lots of pressure, this can be a life saver.  In addition, ginger can relieve sinus pressure that can lead to headaches.  I love to use fresh ginger, but if you want to keep a bit of ginger tea on hand for emergencies check out –> Traditional Medicinals Organic Ginger Tea.

  • Nasal Pressure Points

When I was pregnant with my son, I was instructed by a doctor to massage certain points around my nose to stimulate my sinuses to relieve pressure.  However, when I look online for great, solid information […]

Detox Protocol and Avoiding Toxins – Part 3

Detox Protocol - Fibromyalgia

If you have been reading through this series, then you know –> Leah’s story and you have read
–> my story.  What you need know now is the end of my heavy metal story and understand what type of a detox protocol to consider.  You also need to know how to avoid these heavy metals and toxins.

How the Detox Protocol Worked

The first month I began the heavy metal detox, I noticed a real change.  My bad days lessened.  I had more energy.  The first month, I did not actually believe the change.  I had to keep seeing this progress to believe there was a real difference.

The second month, things kept getting better.  James (my husband) and I began to tackle projects around the house that have been undone for . . . should I admit? . . . YEARS.  Rather than dragging our feet and forcing ourselves to do these tasks, we just naturally made things happen.  We had the energy, the focus, and our systems were cleared.

As for pain, I had not previously realized it, but I was plagued by mild pain for years.  I had been struggling with back pain and just a general malaise for a while now.  After those two months, the pain subsided.

Since then, I have started to work through the online classes that Leah McCullough has on her site.  I look forward to moving forward from the Detox to the rest of her 3D Fibro program.  I would have never said “I have fibromyalgia,” but I had no idea how much of an affect the heavy metals that were in my body were taking on my health and on the health […]

How Heavy Metals Changed My Life – Part 2

heavy metals

How Heavy Metals Changed My Life

After listening to –>Leah’s story, I thought about my own story.  In high school, I was that person who popped up out of bed at the first sound of my alarm.  I had unending energy.  Consequently, I received a few vaccines on my way to college and I thought nothing of it.  I wish I had known then that vaccinations contain heavy metals that collect in the body.  At that point, I still had plenty of energy and did many of the things I planned to do.  In essence, this was my “before” era.

After college, I had more vaccinations before going to South Africa for a missions trip.  I abided by the suggested shot schedule from the CDC.  I had no idea at the time that I only needed the vaccinations that were required by South Africa, not those suggested by the CDC.  In South Africa, my energy was definitely lower.  I did many of the things I needed to do, but it began to be a struggle.  While overseas, I was sick about half of the time.  I loved my time there and I gave every bit of energy I had, but I had so much less of it to give.

I began to eat more fish following my college years.  Indiscriminately, I ate fish.  I did not know from where my fish came and I had no idea that eating certain fish could lead to heavy metal toxicity.  Most farmed fish are contaminated with heavy metals and some ocean fish.

After my trip to South Africa, I married.  During this time of my life, I became a lot less productive.  I had multiple jobs, but less energy.  While […]

Fibromyalgia, Infertility, and Heavy Metals – Part 1

fibromyalgia help

Why Do I Care about Fibromyalgia?

Many of you know me and know that I generally seem healthy.  I eat well.  I exercise (well, sometimes . . . ).  I am not too little, not too large.  Most days, I do not look like I am in pain.  So then, why am I concerned about fibromyalgia?

My interested in fibromyalgia began in November of 2016 at the Weston A. Price Conference in Montgomery, Alabama.  After listening to a day full of speakers, they announced the speakers who would present after dinner.  One of the people who were speaking was a lady who had struggled with fibromyalgia for eight years, struggled with infertility (for the same eight years), and had become pregnant after treating the underlying problem that caused her fibromyalgia.

My ears perked.

Many of you know that while I appear to be healthy, I am struggling with secondary infertility.  Although we have a son, we have been unable to have a successful second pregnancy.  We have been dealing with this for six years.  Stories of hope from women who recovered from a fertility imbalance are of great interest to me.

Leah’s Story of Fibromyalgia

I readily showed up at Leah McCullough’s (–> The Fibro Lady‘s) presentation and listened attentively.  She has quite a story.  For eight years, she struggled with fibromyalgia, so much so, that she could not continue to work.  Her husband took on two jobs to help to support them.  She also dealt with infertility and depression during this time.  Finally, she reached the point where she knew she had to do something different.  She reached out to a local natural practitioner who helped her to make choices that changed her life.

This natural practitioner […]

6 Reasons You Need to Quit Coffee For Good – Boholistic Mom

6 Reasons to Quit Coffee For Good | Boholistic Mom

Why am I suggesting that you quit coffee?

If you know me personally, you know that I adore coffee.  I used to imbibe a cup (or two) of coffee each morning with cream and sugar.  Then I lived in Italy for three years and consumed copious amounts of cappuccino, espresso, and macchiato.  When we returned to the States, I tried my first Whole 30 . . . which worked great because it allowed you to have coffee, though it was without a sweetener.  So I gave up my honey and haven’t looked back, okay . . . well I do miss it, but now I don’t like it in my coffee.

As you can see, I have been an avid coffee drinker.

Or more honestly, a coffee addict . . .

I’m a lightweight.  While some people have to drink three of four cups a day to suffer withdrawal symptoms, I can drink one tazzo of espresso and have the same withdrawal.  Or just one cup of french press.  I feel what the coffee does to my system and I feel when its gone.

I’m starting with my history because it is important that you know I’m not some stupid tea drinker telling you to give up your coffee.  I am a coffee addict/lover who has realized that I can’t keep pretending it isn’t an addiction that is challenging my health.

Today, I’m going to share with you 6 reasons you need to quit coffee for good.  For me, this has been a long time coming and I need to get this out there so others know what I’ve learned.  Your health is worth reading this […]

Brazil and Microcephaly – The Real Facts

I spent hours this morning researching microcephaly, Brazil, and the Zika Virus.  What I found is vital information.  I honestly believe that this information needs to make it to the media and out to the world.  Each party is trying to blame a different person and I cannot believe how little research was done about the chemical Pyriproxyfen before it was used in Brazil’s water supply.  There is no excuse.  Read on.

Brazil and Microcephaly | Boholistic Mom

The Real Facts about Brazil and Microcephaly

 1. There is not a proven link between Zika and microcephaly.

“Authorities still can’t definitively make a causal link between Zika and microcephaly” – Washington Post (1)

2. A group of doctors and researchers in Argentina have published a report stating that a pestide, pyriproxyfen, is the true cause of the increase of birth defects in Brazil.

“A group of doctors and researchers in Argentina has published a report making the provocative argument that a pesticide, rather than the virus, is to blame for the alarming number of birth defects being reported in Brazil.” – Washington Post (1)

3. In 2014, pyriproxyfen was injected into Brazil’s water supplies to decrease the development of mosquito larvae in the water tanks.

“According to the Physicians in Crop-Sprayed Towns, a chemical larvicide that produces malformations in mosquitoes was injected into Brazil’s water supplies in 2014 in order to stop the development of mosquito larvae in drinking water tanks.” – Tech News (2)

4. Pernambuco is the first state in Brazil that had their water supply injected with pyriproxyfen.  Pernambuco is also the first state to have a problem with microcephaly.

“The Brazilian Health Ministry had injected pyriproxyfen to reservoirs in the state of […]

Effective Natural Remedies for a Sore Throat

We All Get Sick

Whether you eat like a foodie or you eat whatever appears on your plate, we all get sick.  Our body collects bacteria and viruses from our environment and eventually one of those bacteria or viruses break through our defenses and we become ill.  All bacteria does not cause us to get sick.  In fact, we need bacteria in our body and in our environment.  Bacteria helps to break down dead plants in the earth.  We have loads of healthy bacteria in our digestive track to break down our food and increase the nutrients received.  We even have an acid mantle on our skin that has bacteria and when healthy, the bacteria help to kill bad bacteria that collect on our skin and kill the bacteria that can cause us to become a bit smelly.

Infection vs Disease

Thus there is a very big difference between infection and disease.  Infection by viruses, bacteria, and microbes happen all the time.  We don’t live in a sterile environment and, honestly, we don’t want to.  When we sterilize our environment and our body, we have no good bacteria in our body to help us fight against the bad bacteria.  Disease happens when the viruses, bacteria, and microbes multiply in an unhealthy way so that our cells become damaged and we begin to show signs and symptoms of illness.1

Good Viruses?

I have learned in the last four years that we desperately need to take care of our good bacteria so that we can have a healthy immune system.  Much of the immune system is based around the health of our gut.  Healthy bacteria make for a happy gut.  I began wondering that if there were good bacteria, were there […]