Living with Dyslexia in Malaysia

kombucha research

 Date: Thu, 1 Jan 2004 09:40:10 -0700
From: “Michael Roussin” <mike@kombucha-research.com>
Subject: Re: [KT] What are the KT pro-biotics?

Good Morning All and Happy New Year!
> 1. Are you still brewing Kombucha and consuming?
> 2. Would you recommend consumption of Kombucha and if so for what reason?
> 3. Has it benefited you healthwise?

1. Yes I still consume Kombucha – 4 ounces on an empty stomach. That is all.
2. I would recommend Kombucha as a daily supplement to the diet, butI’m from the all things in moderation age and don’t believe that consuming large quantities of Kombucha adds additional benefits. I think a small amount on a daily basis is sufficient.
3. My blood pressure dropped about 20 points when I started drinking Kombucha and has stayed lower over the years. Also, my dental health improved and has also stayed better over the years.

Okay, there are too many questions to answer without it becoming a small book, but since the topic is living organisms in Kombucha, here is what we found:The mainstay of Kombucha ferments in North America appear to be Acetobacter xylinum, Zygosaccharomyces, Saccharomyces cerevisia. Unlike the research in the Fromm paper, which showed Brettanyomyces, Zygosaccharomyces and Saccharomyces appearing in 56%, 29%, and 26% of the tested ferments
respectively, we did not isolate Brettanyomyces from any of the ferments we examined. Saccharomyces, Zygo-saccharomyces and Saccharomycodes were the most common yeast in the ferments we examined. Of the genus of Acetobacter, Acetobacter xylinum was the most frequently isolated.

Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the leading species of its genus found in Kombucha. It reproduces by multi-polar budding or ascospore formation. It is employed in many food industries with special strains being used for the
leavening of bread, as top yeasts for ale, and for the production of alcohol, glycerol, and invertase. The invertase production is of special interest in the fermenting of Kombucha, because invertase catalyzes the
hydrolysis of sucrose into glucose and fructose. Invertase is a fructosidase which attacks the fructose end of the sucrose molecule, in contrast to the glucosidase of molds that attack the glucose end.

Zygosaccharomyces are still considered by some to be a subgenus of Saccharomyces. These yeasts are notable for their ability to grow in high concentrations of sugar, and they are involved in the spoilage of honey,
syrups and molasses. They are also used in the fermentation of soy sauce.  Saccharomycodes are a lemon-shaped yeast which are considered objectionable in wine fermentations because they give off-flavors, low yields of alcohol,
and high yields of volatile acids.

Acetobacter xylinum is an acetic acid-producing bacteria that oxidizes ethyl alcohol to acetic acid and other oxidation products. It is not suitable for many commercial applications because of its excessive sliminess, which clogs vinegar generators.

During our investigation, two ferments that we considered to be opposites were examined. The first colony and ferment was very high in acetic acid, and the second colony and ferment was low in acetic acid, but very high in
gluconic acid. . The colonies were placed in sealed Ziplock bags at room temperature for 30 days to observe which organisms could be isolated after such storage. The isolated organisms were identified by the Biolog
MicrosationT System and confirmed by biochemical testing. The species of the organisms were determined by comparing their biochemical profile to those of known bacterial strains. The organisms tested from the high acetic acid ferment were morphologically and biochemically similar to the following: Bacillus licheniformis, Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus amyloliquefaciens, and Rothia dentrocariosa. The genus of Bacillus is generally associated with the soil and the grower of this particular ferment used well water.

From the second low acetic acid ferment, Bacillus coagulans was isolated.

We had not previously screened Kombucha for these types of organisms, for we had studied the ferment from the point of view of what microorganisms produced the ferment. It was surprising to find that these organisms were
capable of surviving in the Kombucha ferment. So, what are these other organisms?

Bacillus licheniformis is a mild form of food poisoning and is frequently associated with cooked meats and vegetables that have been left at room temperature. According to Barbara M. Lund, (The Lancet Oct 20, 1990 v336
n8721 p982(5), the illnesses caused by B. cereus, B. subtilis, B. licheniformis and C. perfringens can easily be prevented by properrefrigeration. The major features of food-poisoning due to B. licheniformis in outbreaks recorded in the UK (24 episodes, [is greater than] 218 cases, 1975-86) were that: (a) the food vehicles most often involved were cooked meats and vegetables; (b) the median period of incubation was about 8 hours and the predominant symptom was diarrhea with vomiting in about half the cases (although the nausea, headaches, flushing, and sweating associated with B. subtilis food-poisoning were not characteristic of B. licheniformis (food-poisoning). B. licheniformis has been excepted for use in commercial fermentation processes for enzymes, antibiotics and other specialty chemicals by the EPA (TSCA Section 5(H)(4) Exemption for Bacillus licheniformis: History of safe commercial use). B. licheniformis has been used in the fermentation industry for over a decade for production of
proteases, amylases, antibiotics, or specialty chemicals. The ATCC Catalogue of Bacteria and Phages lists strains which are capable of producing alkaline proteases, a-amylases, penicillinase, pentosanases, bacitracin, proticin,
5′-inosinic acid and inosine, citric acid, and substituted L-tryptophan.

Rothia dentrocariosa is a common component of dental caries. According to Stuart J. Ruben, The Western Journal of Medicine,( Dec 1993 v159 n6 p690(2)) Rothia was first described as a genus in 1967 by Georg and Brown and shown in 1969 to be pathogenic but of low virulence.[1] This aerobic organism is gram-positive and varies in form from coccoid to filamentous to rod shaped. Branching is seen at times in the filamentous form, which resembles
Actinomyces, Corynebacterium, and Nocardia species. It is a component of normal oral flora that can be recovered from dental caries and plaque. We can only surmise that somewhere in the history of this particular colony,
someone tried to take a bite out of it. The Bacillus found the environment suitable, and survives generation to generation.

Bacillus amyloliquefaciens is employed in fermentation processes. Its presence in Kombucha is not totally surprising.

Bacillus coagulans is aciduric and produces a low pH (4.0 to 5.0) in media containing utilizable carbohydrates. Spoilage of acid foods, such as canned tomatoes, is usually cased by Bacillus coagulans. B. coagulans is a flat
sour bacteria that can produce considerable amounts of lactic acid from sugar. We note here that we found little or no lactic acid in most ferments. A bottled ferment from Temple City Kombucha of Culver City, California was
the only ferment we examined with any appreciable concentration of lactic acid.

I hope that helps.

Mike Roussin

mike@kombucha-research.com

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June 29, 2007 Posted by | Kombucha | 3 Comments

coconut oil

  Message: 2
Date: Fri, 28 Nov 2003 11:30:21 -0800
From: “Richard Grossman, L.Ac., O.M.D., Ph.D.” <acudoc@acudoc.com>
Subject: coconut oil information

Memorandum
To: All Current Clients
From: Krispin
Date: Friday, November 28, 2003
Re: Good fats, bad fats, VIRUSES, aging and stress syndromes.
NOW FOR THE BIG NEWS-
I spoke this week with the renowned world expert on fatty acids and degenerative diseases. Mary Enig, PhD. is a respected researcher in thefield of fats and oils, especially the hydrogenated, partially hydrogenated and trans fats. The latest findings coming down the research channels around the fall of this year will implicate all seed oils in the promotion of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, allergies, adrenal failure and stroke. The list of implicated oils includes canola, soy, corn, safflower, sunflower and all hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated fats and oils.
In the early 1900’s 25% of our fats came from seed oils including margarine and shortening and the rest from saturated, natural, no hormone, NOT CORN OR SEED FED, beef, eggs, poultry, pork and dairy. By the 1970’s this
proportion of seed oil intake had grown to 75% of daily fat totals with natural saturated fats reduced to 25% of totals.Changing from the safe, non-oxidizing saturated fats to the easily oxidizable polyunsaturated fatty acids, has precipitated the tremendous rise in degenerative diseases, all of which are associated with oxidative free
radical damage, and a higher need for all anti-oxidant vitamins. Reducing seed oils and using coconut milk or coconut oil as the staple of the diet is reversing viral loads in HIV, eliminating all types of Herpes
virus and reducing or preventing other viral diseases including the yearly ‘flus’ and measles. Animals fed natural (not processed) coconut and coconut oils were unable to grow tumors, malignant or benign. Coconut oil (as oil or in the coconut milk) lowers cholesterol if it is high and raises it if it is too low. Oil of coconut is anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal in the plant, in our gut and in our blood. In human HIV patients viral loads have decreased
from 950,000 to undetectable when just 1/3 can of coconut milk is consumed twice a day. The coconut oil or coconut milk must be un-preserved. Good brands are Thai Kitchen or Bangkok. Equivalents are 2-3 tablespoons of the unprocessed coconut oil daily or 1/3 can of the coconut milk twice a day (5 ounces twice a day) or 1/2 coconut steeped, mashed and eaten daily. Clients with hypo or hyper cortisol tests currently using this protocol are
showing an almost immediate response in adrenal restoration. With just the alteration of the thiamin plus B-complex plus coconut milk within a week day and night cycling of cortisol normalizes. Clients are more awake, mood
improves, energy greatly improves, sleep becomes normal without melatonin, Relaxer or any other aid. Phosphatidyl serine is not necessary. The coconut milk tastes great. If ‘fats’ bother your gall bladder stretch out the servings over more meals. High intake of seed oils contributes to gallstone formation but coconut oil or milk will normalize gallbladder function over time.
In studies in coconut eating countries metabolic rates in both men and women were found to be 25% higher than in the general US population. This protocol, if adhered to, will not cause weight gain unless you are underweight. If you are overweight, you will experience weight loss. The type of fatty acids found in unprocessed coconut fat are readily burned for energy without free radical damage. Seed oils destabilize blood sugar levels and contribute to storage of calories as fat. The thiamin, B-complex and coconut milk protocol stabilizes blood sugar and enhances metabolism. This protocol is safe for both type 1 and 2 diabetics, and any one experiencing stress induced hypoglycemia. These recommendations are in addition to any other supplements you may already be taking. Please do reduce other fats in the diet when adding coconut milk if your fat intake is already high. The fats to use are:
* Coconut oil or fresh coconut or coconut milk, natural, without preservatives, not hydrogenated. * Butter or ghee, on food as needed or desired (but coconut oil or milk can be used instead) * Olive oil, extra virgin only, for cooking or salad dressing or mayonnaise (make your own) * Peanut oil and non-hydrogenated peanut butter, for cooking or
eating * Avocado oil, for salads, not for cooking * Nuts and seeds in the whole, unprocessed state, alone or with
other foods. This includes the flax family. Flaxseeds or oil should only be used fresh. Buy organic flaxseeds, keep them in the freezer and fresh grind them in a coffee or seed mill on the day you use them. Light roasting of
some types of seeds is permissible. Other than sesame tahini or peanut butter do not use nuts as ‘butters’.

In descending order the previous fats are saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. A final excellent source of the good fats is fish and the old rule applies. Eat fish 3-4 times a week, fresh not frozen. Though canned
water pack white tuna may be used for a protein source it is not a good source of the omega-3 fatty acids.
A suggested use for the coconut milk with breakfast, * cook your eggs in it or * put 1/3 cup in your protein and potassium smoothie (with added flaxseed for fiber) or * oatmeal cereal- 1 serving freshly made oatmeal, made with water 1/3 can coconut milk (about 5 ounces) 2 tablespoons flaxseed (makes about 4 tablespoons when ground)
2 heaped tablespoons non-fat cottage cheese or 1 scoop protein powder (not soy based) for protein raisins or dried blueberries or fresh fruit for more potassium maple syrup (grade C the dark stuff) to sweeten This breakfast provides protein, short and medium chain fatty acids for energy, complex carbohydrates and fiber from the flaxseed and oatmeal for energy and essential fatty acids from the flaxseeds for cell reproduction and growth. It also contains an abundant supply of potassium and other nutrients needed for regeneration and repair. Avoid entirely, or as much as possible, in food preparation and packaged foods:
* Safflower oil * Soy oil and soy products (more on this in the next newsletter)
* Sunflower oil * Cottonseed oil * Corn oil * Canola oil (never cook with this oil)
* Hydrogenated fats and oils * Partially hydrogenated fats and oils* Shortening
Check packages to make sure what you are getting. Do not miss on this one. In the next issue of the newsletter I will be explaining my position on all of the above and giving the clinical references. What I have the time and space to tell you now is that the sooner you switch your oils and fats the healthier you will be and the longer you will live
(barring an act of God or Satan).All current research DATA DECLARING the harmfulness of coconut oil and palm
Oil HAS BEEN COMPILED from studies using HYDROGENATED oils. THE CONCLUSIONSDRAWN IN THESE STUDIES CANNOT FACTUALLY BE APPLIED TO THE USE OF UNPROCESSEDTROPICAL OILS.
ALL HYDROGENATED FATS AND OILS, INCLUDING MARGARINE, SHORTENING AND ALLOTHER HYDROGENATED AND PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OILS FOUND IN COOKIES, CANDIES, BAKED GOODS, BOXED TO BAKE ITEMS, CANNED FOODS AND MOSTRESTAURANT FOODS CONTRIBUTE TO DEGENERATIVE DISEASES INCLUDING HEART DISEASE, DIABETES, OBESITY, HYPERTENSION, STROKE, DEPRESSION, HYPOGLYCEMIA, THYROID DISORDERS AND CANCER.EVERY STUDY USING NATURAL, UNPROCESSED COCONUT AND PALM OILS FOUND A
NORMALIZING OF CHOLESTEROL, BLOOD SUGAR AND BLOOD PRESSURE. This is also true of extra virgin olive oil, peanut oil and avocado oil. COCONUT AND PALM OILS HELP TO PREVENT AND TREAT ALL VIRUSES.TOPICALLY COCONUT OIL (AND COCONUT MILK) TREATS SKIN AND HAIR inFESTATIONS AND INFECTIONS BY PARASITES, FUNGUS AND BACTERIA.
Confidential
A final note: Coconut milk is not the juice from the inside of a young coconut. That thin liquid is called coconut water. Coconut milk is made by steeping the coconut and scraping out the meat, adding just enough water to
simmer and mashing the end product into a thick, creamy (or milky)substance, coconut milk.

Thiamin normalizes carbohydrate utilization by supporting the enzymes necessary to burn glucose and glycogen in the cell. The complete B-complex is used to stabilize blood sugar and keep the body from going into ‘adrenal
stimulating hypoglycemia’. Short and medium chain fatty acids as found in coconut milk support cell energy as an alternative fuel source as glucose and glycogen are recycled which further prevents the dip into adrenal stress.

Expect more energy, less hunger, better mood and better sleep. If you have HIV, CFSIDS, fibromyalgia, candida, CMV, herpes (any type), hepatitis (any type) expect some initial sleepiness and then slow but steady recovery. Make
sure to continue your basic protocols but this plan requires a much lower intake of anti-oxidants ao your program may be modified. Hypoglycemia, with resulting adrenal stress and cortisol stimulated utilization of proteins and
long chain fatty acids for fuel, is eliminated.

SOURCES: Thai Kitchens Coconut Milk from Whole Foods in SF Bay area. Order by the case for a 10% discount OR Natural Value Brand also from Whole Foods and also 10% discount by the case. Do not get the ‘lite’ versions. If you are unable to access coconut milk, any brand without preservatives, you may
substitute coconut oil, 2 tablespoons a day total per person, from Spectrum Oils or Now Foods. Now Foods 1-800-283-3500. The oil can be used for cooking, baking or mixed in a smoothie.

June 29, 2007 Posted by | Organic Gardening | Leave a comment

Summary : Disabilities Act 2002

  Original Draft of Persons with Disability Act Summary of Act in EnglishAmendments proposed by SILA

Chinese Version Summary of Chinese Version

Malay Version RINGKASAN: Cadangan Akta Orang Kurang Upaya

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A SUMMARY : The Proposed Persons with Disabilities Act 2002

Introduction : The Ministry of National Unity and Social Development through its Working Group on Legislation headed by Encik Mah Hassan Haji Omar had drafted a proposed Act to be called the Persons with Disabilities Act to provide the basis for equalization of opportunities for persons with disabilities,to eliminate discrimination and harassment against them and to promote their full participation as equal citizens of this country.

Chapter 1 of the Proposed Act covers definitions. Among the definitions, “disability” is defined as “any restriction or lack of ability, resulting from an impairment, to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being” and “impairment” is “any loss or abnormality of psychological, physiological or anatomical structure or function “.

Chapter 2 provides for the equalization of opportunites and full participation for disabled persons.This chapter is divided into 7 parts.

Chapter 2 Part 1 sets out the responsilities of all the relevant authorities to prevent and detect disabilities. Among the responsibilities are the carrying out of research on the causes of disabilities and providing adequate training for primary health care personnel to assist disabled persons and regular treatment to improve their level of functioning.

Recognising that education provides the key to the development of disabled persons, Chapter 2 Part 2 covers in detail the requirements to provide disabled persons with equal access to quality education. It requires the relevant authorities to provide every disabled child with free education in an appropriate environment until the age of 18 years. It advocates integration of such students into mainstream schools where possible, the provision of flexible and suitable curriculum, assistive devices and properly trained teachers. The relevant authorities are also required to prepare a comprehensive education scheme to implement individualized education plan for every disabled child and to provide transport and financial assistance to parents and NGOs working in this aspect.

Chapter 2 Part 3 provides for ways to promote the employment and self-employment of disabled persons so that they can contribute to nation building and lead more independent lives.It sets out incentives for employers and financial and training assistance for disabled persons to carry out their own businesses.

Chapter 2 Part 4 covers the rehabilitation facilities and services to be provided for disabled persons.

Chapter 2 Part 5 covers access. It requires the relevant authorities and local governments to implement policies to reduce physical barriers in the environment and to increase access to information and communication for the disabled persons.

Chapter 2 Part 6 on support services requires all relevant authorities to ensure the participation of disabled persons and their organizations in the development of government policies and in decision making.

1-2

Chapter 2 Part 7 provides for better social security coverage for disabled persons by requiring the relevant authorities to give them adequate income support, incentives for seeking employment and protection from abuse

Chapter 3 makes Discrimination on the ground of disability unlawful. It provides the mechanisms for disabled persons to seek redress if they are discriminated on the ground of their disabilities. It has 5 parts.

Chapter 3 Part 1 defines direct and indirect discrimination. Discrimination is said to occur if a person treats a disabled person less favourably than a person without the disability in circumstances that are the same. Indirect discrimination is defined as treating a disabled person less favourably on the ground of his/her disability by requiring that person to comply with a requirement which he/she cannot comply with and which requirement is not reasonable having regard to the circumstances of the case.

Chapter 3 Part 2 covers all the areas where disability discrimination is prohibited. The areas include employment, agencies, partnerships, qualifying bodies, registered organizations, education, access to buildings, in the provision of goods, services, facilities and accommodation, in sports and recreational activities and in land and property dealings.

Chapter 3 Part 3 prohibits discrimination involving harassment in employment and education.

Chapter 3 Part 4 covers exemptions. Acts done in compliance with statutory authorities, order of court or tribunal or any law or regulation or to protect public health cannot be considered as discriminatory and are therefore not unlawful.

Chapter 3 Part 5 sets up a Commission for Persons with Disabilities. The Commission consists of a chairperson, 4 persons from the government and 4 persons representing disabled persons. The functions of the Commission, among other things , are to enforce the Act, advise the Minister, submit reports to Parliament, safeguard the rights of disabled persons and look into complaints of discrimination. It has powers to investigate complaints and to take up the matter with prosecuting authorities to prosecute those who discriminate against disabled persons and/or those who fail to comply with the requirements of the Act.

Chapter 4 on Offences sets out the punishments for those who discriminate against disabled persons and/or those who fail to comply with the provisions of this Act.

FOR DETAILS OF THE PROPOSED ACT, GO TO :

FOR DETAILS ON THE SUGGESTIONS FOR AMENDMENTS TO THE ACT, GO TO :

This summary is prepared by the Coalition of Societies of and for Disabled Persons in Penang which includes the following organizations:

(1)Society of Disabled Persons Penang (2)Eden Handicap Service Centre(3)Old Nicolites Association(4)St. Nicholas Association for the Blind(5)Society of the Blind, Malaysia (SBM), Penang Branch(6)Penang Deaf Association(7)The Cerebral Palsy (Spastic) Children’s Association Of Penang(8)Asia Community Service(9)Autism Support Association Penang(10)Penang Down Syndrome Association(11)Socio-economic & Environmental Research Institute

Original Draft of Persons with Disability Act Summary of Act in English

Amendments proposed by SILA

Chinese Version Summary of Chinese Version

Malay Version RINGKASAN: Cadangan Akta Orang Kurang Upaya

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June 29, 2007 Posted by | Dyslexia | Leave a comment

The importance of bees in organic agriculture

honey combIMG_0025

from my garden

IMG_0133

Bees started to build their bee house in my bougainvilla plant – 2005

The importance of bees in organic agriculture

Michael Weiler considers the value of bees in organic agriculture

Honeybee (Apis mellifera L.) keeping reveals a long-standing relationship between humans and insects.  Honeybees are of vital importance to the landscape they live and fly in. They increase the diversity of the  flora, which subsequently increases the diversity of insects and herbivorous animals and even soil fertility. It is well known that the quality and quantity of blossom flowers are increased when pollinated by insects, especially by bees. The effect of pollination by bees becomes particularly noticeable where fruit is grown for human consumption.

The objective of organic agriculture is the sustainable cultivation of nature, that is the landscape, soil, plants and animals. In addition, respectful social relationships between humans are encouraged.  The benefits of such practice are numerous: on the one hand, foodstuffs of highest quality are produced, on the other hand, nature, the basis for life on earth, is developed sustainably. This  objective of organic agriculture is significantly enhanced by the presence of bees.

Bees and life

A bee  hive can produce between 150,000 and 350,000 bees per year, depending on the landscape and climatic zone it lives in.  The bee venom of one hive amounts to approximately 45-100 grams (0.3mg/bee).

However, only a few bees will ever sting in their short lifetime of six weeks. Bees spend their lives flying from one plant to the next collecting nectar. While doing so, they automatically pollinate the flowers and distribute some of their revitalising bee venom to the plants and landscape. Both pollination and revitalisation through bees enhance the fertility and regenerative capacity of plants. Dr. Rudolf Steiner often referred to this link in his lectures on bees.

Organic beekeeping in practice

How can a bee colony be managed in practice to comply with the objectives of organic agriculture, while ensuring the welfare of bees?

First of all, beekeepers have to respect the bees way of life. They have to be enthusiastic about working with bees, but also be willing to face problems that may occur. Next, the necessary time and materials have to be readily available.  Bees do not articulate themselves when in need, and are more inclined  to ‘die in silence’. For bees to survive, expert human care is necessary, especially in the so called ‘modern’ regions of the world.  The hives and other  equipment, should be made of natural, untreated, material and no poisons should be used in the management or treatment of the bees themselves.

When honey is collected enough should always be left with the bees so that they do not have to be fed with sugar during the winter. If however, circumstances make it necessary to provide sugar as little as possible should be used, and where feasible some of the bees own honey should be added to the sugar solution to improve the quality of the feed.  Harvested honey should not be heated as it causes the quality of the honey to deteriorate. Light and heat also increase the aging of honey.

Michael Weiler works at the Biodynamic Institute in Germany and has kept bees for twenty years.

Biofach sets new records

Once again the organic business world come together in February  for the 11th Biofach fair in Nurnberg. With 1,725 exhibitors and 25,000 professional visitors new records were set for this unique and world-leading organic fair. IFOAM was again the patron of the event, a role that includes a major involvement in the conference programme.  Apart from general cooperation in the conference programme, IFOAM also organised a number of international seminars on topics that are particularly relevant to the organic movement. Among the theme covered were:

  • The roles of local markets and regional marketing
  • The social agenda of trade and organics
  • Fair and slow – three pillars for a common roof?

This year the “Focus Country” was the United Kingdom with its booming organic market.

IFOAM’s President, Gunnar Rundgren, gave a well received speech during the opening session. The opening ceremony was highlighted with a challenging presentation by the newly appointed German Minister of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, Ms Renate Kunasst from the Green Party. It is a remarkable fact that te first time a German minister of agriculture had paid a visit to the Biofach fair. However, Renate Kunast certainly made up for this and impressed everybody, not only with her strong support  of organic agriculture, but also because of her clear and radical analysis of the today’s situation in conventional farming, “That era of industrial farming is at an end”. But she left no doubt that this will only be the case if we are prepared to pay more for food and accept her slogan ‘Quality instead of Quantity’. She also reconfirmed her commitment to work towards 20% of German farms being organic by the year 2010. With the dual crises of BSE and foot and mouth disease, as well as the media talent of Renate Kunast it was not a surprise that Biofach received more media attention than ever before.

The floors of the fair were extremely busy, and watching the discussions and trade activities that took place all day and in every hall there is no doubt that the organic market is not only continuing but rapidly growing in its booming phase. It is now  that the yields of the decade long struggle to position  organic agriculture as the leading model for the future can be ‘harvested’.  It is important, though , not to be carried away by the wave of success or to sacrifice some of the basic organic principles on the altar of market expansion.  IFOAM’s role in ensuring this was, in fact, referred to by the Federation’s President, Gunnar Rundgren, when he  wrote in his welcome message to Biofach, ‘Our responsibility is not only to follow the organic rules but also to ensure that our production and trading practises are sustainable and people-friendly. It is still too early to determine exactly how, if and when. Ethical aspects of production and trade will be fully incorporated in the organic standards, but it is  now clear that if you want to be a future player, you should take this into serious consideration.’

The transition from Biofach’s previous owners and managers, the Okowelt Company (Hubert Rottner, Hagen Sunder, Christine Neidhardt), to Messe Nurnberg, the new owner, went smoothly. Messe Nurnberg’s potential and resources will also ensure that the newly-introduced global Biofach concept will become the focal point of organic trade all over the world. The Biofach Japan in December this year will be the next major step to making sure that ‘the world continues to grow organic.’

Biofach Japan

Tokyo, Japan

10-13 December 2001

The successful   concept of the world’s leading organic fair, Biofach held annually in Nurnberg, Germany, is a solid foundation for the upcoming Biofach Japan.  It is is organised by Global Fairs, a subsidiary of messe Nurnberg the organisers of the Biofach in Nurnberg. In light of the positive cooperation between IFOAM, patron of Biofach, and Messe Nurnberg, the invitation to become a global partner was accepted by IFOAM. IFOAM will now be  the parton for the new concept, which internationalises and decentralises Biofach. The new partnership between IFOAM, Messe Nurnberg and Global Fairs was signed at this year’s

Fair in Nurnberg.

The first  event  resulting from this new cooperative relationship will be Biofach Japan, taking place from 10-13 December, 2001, in Tokyo.  Together with its Japanese members, IFOAM will carry the special responsibility for the educational programme of the fair. It is expected that Biofach Japan will reach beyond Japan into the whole Asian region, which has tremendous ‘organic’ potential.

Global Fairs has arranged a very convenient package arrangement, which not  only facilitates  participation, but also makes it affordable, considering the high prices typical of fairs, particularly in Japan. Anybody with a business  interest in the development of organic agriculture and trade in Asia should not miss Biofach Japan- either as exhibitor or visitor.

The 4th IFOAM Organic World Exhibition

August 24-25, 2002

St. Ann’s Academy, Victoria, BC, Canada

The 4th IFOAM Organic World Exhibition is held in conjunction with the 14th Organic World Congress. For one week-end in August 2002 Victoria will be the ‘organic’ capital of Canada! This international organic festival is an opportunity to showcase certified organic products from around the world.

The attractive heritage building of St Ann’s Academy will provide a unique setting for the marquees and individual display tents scattered throughout the grounds. Exhibitors are invited to display their finest organic food, beverages and fibre products, and to offer for them sample and sale.  This Organic World Exhibition is offering exhibition space at half the standard price to non-profit groups who wish to inform the public about organic agriculture projects in their country.

The event will have cultural activities, music and other performances taking place throughout the Exhibition, as well as  an exciting programme of films and speakers. This World Expo will be a100% recycled/no waste event with recycling facilities on-site. The City of Victoria is ‘going green’ and organic methods are being used at St Ann’s this season in preparation for the event in 2002.

Come, join in and enjoy the fun as you sample the best the organic community has to offer.  Admission is free for residents, tourist and congress delegates. August is the height of the tourist season and 15,000 people are expected to visit the site during the course of the weekend. Exhibitors are encouraged to book their space as early as possible.

For more information concerning any event at IFOAM 2002 please contact

IFOAM 2002, c/o Building 20, 8801 East Saanich Road, Sidney BC, V8L 1H3, Canada.

Tel: +1-250-655-5662    Fax: +1-250-655-5657   email: ifoam2002@cog.ca

Website: www.cog.ca/ifoam2002

Registration information will be available from October 2001.

Effective Micro-organisms Technology

EM-Technology was developed by professor Dr. Teruo Higa in 1980 at  the University of Rhyukyus, Japan.  At the First International Conference on Nature Farming held in Tahialand in 1989, the Asia Pacific Natural Agriculture Network (APNAN) was formed. This network established an international programme for promoting research, education and extension of nature farming with EM-Technology.

EM contains photosynthetic bacteria (Rhodopseudomonas spp.), lactic acid bacteria (Lactobacillus spp.) and yeast (Saccharomyces spp.). It also supports thr activities of other microbes. It is claimed that EM promotes germination, growth, flowering, fruiting, and ripening in crop plants.  It enhances the photosynthetic capacity of plants and the efficiency of organic matter as fertilisers. EM develops the resistance of plants to pests and diseases and suppresses soil borne pathogens and pests. It can also be used in human and animal health care. A good introduction on EM-Technology can be down-loaded from www.agriton.nl/higa.html

In Pakistan EM-Technology is being promoted by Nature Farming Research & Development Foundation (NFRDF) which set up the Nature Farming Research Centre and the EM-Technology Training Institute. In the last 8 years extensive experimentation has led to some important innovations in EM-Technology. Now a wide network of EM suppliers and technology transfer officers are available for the thousands of farmers who have begun using EM-Technology.

In January 2000, the EM World Journal (ISSN:1562-255X) was launched by Nature Farming Research & Development Foundation, 41-X-101, Susan Road, Madina Town, Faisalabad, 38060 Pakistan. Ax: +9241613507; nature@fsd.paknet.com.pk

The Journal contains research articles on EM-Technology in agriculture and health. One of the articles: Technology of Effective Micro-organisms as an alternative for rice and wheat production in Pakistan by Tahir Hussain et al., reports on a long-term field experiment at Faisalabad, Pakistan, to determine the agronomic and economic merits of EM-Technology. Results were, among others: EM applied in combination with NPK fertilisers, Green Manure (GM) and Farm Yard Manure (FYM) caused significant increase in grain and straw yield and  in nutrient uptake by the grain and straw of each crop following the order NPK+EM>GM+EM>FYM+EM. The GM+EM treatment produced grain and straw yields of each crop that approached those for NPK alone. A comparative economic analysis of the treatments showed a significantly higher net return due to EM. The average net profit from rice and wheat production using EM was US$44.90/ha and US$62.35/ha, respectively, compared to about nil for the conventional rice-wheat system with optimal fertilisation and management.

Key elements of “Farm Planning (FP) for Sustainable Farming””

•1. Learning from the forest for the farm.

Before starting a farm planning process in a farm, farm families and extension staff learn from the example of a natural forest as a sustainable environment.  The most important ecological processes through  which the natural forest sustains itself and creates a balanced environment are in brief:

  • Bio mass production
  • Diversity and complexity (a web of relations in unity)
  • Living soil as a major component of soil fertility
  • Recycling of all organic matter
  • Efficient use of all the resources
  • Site specificity of plant and animal species chosen

By discovering and analysing these processes and their linkages in a natural environment, families and extension staff draw learning points for sustainable farming.

Efficient resource use serves as the starting point for FP. The unity in a natural forest environment as a system with a web of interaction between its elements is also important. Likewise, in FP the farm is considered in a holistic way, as a system with flows of material and energy between all the different farm enterprises.

•2. Observation and analysis of the existing situation of the farm.

The planning process starts from the existing situation on the farm, which is carefully observed and analysed.  How does the present farm system work and what are the available resources?  The farm family members are the most important resource persons in the exercise of observation and analysis of resources, processes, practices, opportunities and problems in their own farm.  Extension staff act as facilitators. Together they document the analysis of the farm system in maps, flow charts and written or “symbolised” text: this is the first part of the farm document.

•3. Exposure visits to farm families who successfully developed their farms.

Groups of farm families who have mapped the existing situation of their farms visit others who are in the process of successfully developing their farms, and collect ideas for their own farm plans.

•4. Planning for further development of the farm.

Before making the Farm Plan, farm families and facilitators discuss about planning in relation to needs, goals, dreams, and vision on the future.  Planning starts with the ‘here and now’, the existing situation, and reaches a final goal.  It describes changes and improvements in different feasible steps, keeping in mind the lessons learned from the natural forest environment and utilising available resources optimally.

In a Farm Plan this final goal, the more sustainable situation of the farm, is put on paper. Then, with the help of simple formats, often designed by the farm families themselves, the different steps of systematic development of the farm over several years, towards the desired situation, are chalked out: the longterm plan.  The long-term plan, is divided in seasonal workplans,  in which the activities for the season, the necessary resources and the expected returns are documented.  This is the second part of the farm document made by the farm family.

This farm document, the Farm Plan, is not a blue -print but a flexible framework for the farm development, which can be adapted to changing situations (e.g. weather conditions, availability of resources, changing views and priorities, new ideas, etc.) This makes Farm Planning an ongoing process.

•5. Implementation of the Farm Plan

Implementation of Farm Plans is the responsibility of the  respective farm families.  Their Farm Plan is a documented commitment to the systematic development of their farms. It increases the confidence of the farm families: “We can reach this goal on our farm with our own resources”. At the end of each season the outcome of the seasonal work-plans is reviewed and new workplans are made, based on the results, and with reference to the long-term plan.

Farm Planning for Sustainable Farming is a family affair, involving women, men and children and their experience, knowledge and views of the farm. The planning process, the plans and their implementation are ‘owned’ by the family and facilitated  by extension staff.

The Sprout Route

Count the stars stretched across the desert sky. Count the grains of sand spread upon the tropical beach. Count the seeds contained in a jar of alfalfa sprouts.  Now try to count the many ways to grow the perfect alfalfa sprout. In order to conserve paper and ink, here are six basic sprout routes (which possible total five more than you need to explore):

  • A. The Jar/Tube Method
  • B. The Bag Method
  • C. The Tray/Plate Method
  • D. The Towel Method
  • E. The Saucer Method
  • F. The Soil Method
  • A. Jar/Tube Method

The most common container for home sprouting is the jar, and for decades it has proven to be the most effective. In time for the new millenium, a new contender has joined the symphony of sprout containers: Tubby the Tube.

While many nutrition books discuss sprouting in a page, they outline the Jar Method in a paragraph.  At the risk of appearing complicated and confused, our instructions span over several pages.  Not difficult and foolish, just definitive and foolproof.

The ten simple steps are:

  1. Measure and cull
  2. Wash and skim
  3. Soak overnight
  4. Drain the soaked water
  5. Rinse and drain (2-3 times a day for 2-3 days)
  6. Sun (leafy sprouts only)
  7. Hull (optional)
  8. Cull and store
  9. Clean the jar
  10. Begin again

We shall begin our bowl-by-bowl description with alfalfa sprouts.  Granting that the seeds are viable, they will sprout even if your thumb is not green:

  • 1. Measure and cull

Measure two tablespoons of seeds. Eventually you will develop the ability to estimate quantities visually, but for now resort to the spoon and cup.

Pick the seeds clean of foreign matter such as twigs and stones. Extensive experimentation proves that stones do not sprout.  Alfalfa seeds are too tiny, but larger sproutables should be culled of the Four D’s: Decayed, Diseased, Discolored, and Dwarfed. All these signify Dead.

Flat-tipped tweezers used by stamp collectors work best, but even a thumb  (red or green) and forefinger will suffice. Do not deliberate too long over  this. In fact, you may postpone this step  just before the harvest, when the quick are more easily discerned from the dead. In this case, a rotten apple seed rarely spoils the barrel.

  • 2. Wash and skim

Place the measured and culled seeds into the jar. Fill the jar three-quarters full with room-temperature water. Wither vigorously twirl the jar or stir the seeds in the water with a spoon.  A broad wooden spoon works better than a tiny metal teaspoon. Pour off the UFOs (the Unidentified Floating Objects).

Some otherwise lively-looking seeds will also float to the top. These may be infertile, but you are wise to judge them innocent until proven guilty.  Again fill the jar with water and, if needs be, pur off the UFOs. Repeat this step until the water appears clear and the surface is free of UFOs.

(Using a tube: Affix the solid brown cap onto one end of the tube. This end now becomes the bottom. The one and only inconvenience of the tube compared to the jar occurs at this step. The fit of the plastic cap to the plastic tube might not be leakproof. Test the fit by filling the tube with water before adding the seeds. If room temperature water leaks, pour it off and add hot water from the faucet. The slight heat will mold the shape of the cap to the shape of the tube. Next, pour off the hot water, add the seeds, add the room temperature water, and proceed as above.)

  • 3. Soak Overnight

Just one more time fill the jar three-quarters with room temperature water. Cover with a screen top. Not a jar cap, because air ventilation is important even at this submerged stage.  Alfalfa or clover should soak from 3 – 8 hours, depending upon the room temperature: the warmer the temperature, the shorter the soak time.

For other seeds soaking times vary. A common  denominator is 8 hours or over-night: a one-night stand. Let the seeds stand in water overnight, and while you are sleeping your sprouts will be waking.

Generally, the larger and harder the seed, the longer the soak time. When the saturated seeds have expanded to nearly twice their original size, or when they no longer rattle but just dully thumb against the glass if you spin the jar, they are ready for draining. Be aware that the larger beans, such as chick-peas, or  harder beans, such as aduki, might require 24 hours of soaking at cool room temperatures

June 29, 2007 Posted by | Organic Gardening | 2 Comments

kefir – list of bacteria and yeast

  Message: 1       
   Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2004 12:24:41 +0930
   From: “Dominic N. Anfiteatro” <dna@chariot.net.au>
Subject: Was:: does kefir grains evolve? [microflora, and size or weight of kefir grains]

Hi Nori,

 I hope you have digested the info I shared in my last reply, without suffering any indigestion in the process 😉 Otherwise I suggest to sip the info with a slurp of kefir.
Here is a list of organisms isolated from kefir grains, which is similar to the list found on Dom’s Kefir in-site:

LACTOBACILLUS
L. casei – Homo-fermentative [responsible for 90% of lactate synthesis]
L. paracasei – Homo-fermentative
L. acidophilis – Homo-fermentative
L. hilgardi -Hetero-fermentative [responsible for 50% of lactate synthesis]
L. delbruechkii subsp. bulgaricus – Homo-fermentative
L. kefiranofaciens – Produce Kefiran, internaly within the matrix
L. kefyri – Synthesizes kefiran superficially [possibly controlls microflora]
L. desidiosus – Heterofermentative [ferments L-arabinose and gluconate]
L. brevis [Synthesizes polysaccharide]
L. cellobiosus
L. casei subsp. rhamnosus
L. casei subsp. alactosus
L. helveticus subsp. lactis
L. delbruekii subsp. lactis
L. lactis
L. fructivorans
L. parakefir
L. paracasei subsp. paracasei
L. plantarum

LACTOCOCCUS
Lc. lactis subsp. lactis [primarilly utilize lactose]
Lc. lactis subsp. biacetylactis
Lc. lactis subsp. creomoris

LEUCONOSTOC
Leuc. citrovorum
Leuc. cremoris
Leuc. mesenteroides subsp. mesenteroides
Leuc. mesenteroides subsp. dextrancicum
Leuc. mesenteroides subsp cremoris
Leuc. lactis

STREPTOCOCCUS
Strep. salivarius subsp. thermophilus [primarilly utilize lactose]
Strep. lactis
Strep. lactis subsp. diacetylactis [Synthesizes diacetyl]

ACETOBACTER
Acetobacter aceti [synthesize acetic acid from ethonol in the pressence of oxygen]
Acetobacter racens

YEASTS

KLUYVEROMYCES
Kluyv. lactis
Kluyv. marxianus subsp. marxianus
Kluyv. bulgaricus
Kluyv. fragilis

CANDIDA
Candida kefir
Candida pseudotropicalis

SACHAROMYCES
Sach. kefir [controls exogenous yeasts]
Sach. unisporum
Sach. torulopsis subsp holmii

TORULA
Torula kefir [controls exogenous yeasts]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ALso, here is an abstract that I thought migh interest you, regarding size [or wieght] of kefir grains in relationship of media [amount of whey] and temperature.

“J Dairy Res. 2001 Nov;68(4):653-61

Polysaccharide production by kefir grains during whey fermentation.

Rimada PS, Abraham AG.
Centro de Investigacion y Desarrollo en Criotecnologia de Alimentos, La Plata, Argentina.

Fermentation of deproteinised whey with kefir grains CIDCA AGK1 was studied focusing on polysaccharide production from lactose. Kefir grains were able to acidify whey at different rates depending on the grain/whey ratio. During fermentation, kefir grains increased their weight and a water-soluble polysaccharide was released to the media. Exopolysaccharide concentration increased with fermentation time, reaching values of 57.2 and 103.4 mg/l after 5 days of fermentation in cultures with 10 and 100 g kefir grains/l, respectively. The polysaccharide fraction quantified after fermentation corresponded to the soluble fraction, because part of the polysaccharide became a component of the grain. Weight of kefir grains varied depending on the time of fermentation. Polysaccharide production was affected by temperature.*** Although the highest concentration of polysaccharide in the media was observed at 43 degrees C at both grain/whey ratios, the weight of the grains decreased in these conditions.***[Ed Dom– this is likely due to the release or the enopolysaccharide from the grains themselves, released into the media, due to the reduction of grain-size or weight of].

In conclusion, kefir grains were able to acidify deproteinised whey, reducing lactose concentration, increasing their weight and producing a soluble polysaccharide.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Not all grains from the same batch are likely to be large [in the case of large grains] as some smaller grains are released from larger ones. But in most cases, one should find that at least 80% of grains are uniform in size [% always being the largest in most cases.

Did this help?

Thanks for your well wishes for I and I and I and I … now back to you I with extra sheen!
Dom

—– Original Message —–
From: “noric1989” <nori.comello@colostate.edu>
To: <Kefir_making@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Monday, December 13, 2004 2:59 PM
Subject: [Kefir_making] Re: does kefir grains evolve?

> Hello Dom:

> Thank you for your typically profound reply.  It will take a while
for me to digest thoroughly, but in the meantime, I am curious to
know what growing conditions cause kefir grains to grow large like
golf balls and cauliflower heads.  I’ve had my current grains for a
while now (incidentally, they happen to be descendants of yours
passed down through several people).  While occasionally some may
grow large, not ALL of them grow large at once, and I’ve never been
able to link growth patterns to specific growing conditions.  Most
of the time they stay on the small side.  Ah well, maybe it really
doesn’t matter in the end if consistently good kefir is the result,
but it has piqued my curiosity.

Also, HAVE you identified specific strains of kefir?  The question
has been asked at least a few times on the list since I’ve been on
it.  My impression is that there seems to be more distinct,
indentified strains of kombucha, and somewhat more uniformity w/
kefir.  What do you think?

Hope all’s going well at home w/ your new baby and pup!

Nori

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kefir | Leave a comment

What is kefir?

  Date: Sun, 31 Oct 2004 21:00:34 -0800
   From: 121 <121@llix.net>
Subject: Kefir research

*WHAT IS KEFIR?*
By Egon Skovmose
http://www.danlac.com/
http://www.midvalleyvu.com/Kefir.html      

In November 1881 the German naturalist Eduard Kern reported to Botanic
Society in St. Petersburg about a mysterious beverage, which was
exclusive common to the higher regions of the Caucasus and said to
assure the inhabitants of this area good health and a very long life
expectancy.

This beverage is kefir, a fermented milk product whose particular
features is that in addition to lactic fermentation it also undergoes
alcoholic fermentation caused by the presence of yeast, which yields
this sourish, yeasty, sparkling, refreshing end product.

Kefir is not only a very valuable tasty, physiologically nutritional
milk product it is said to be a “miracle” product.

Research conducted by East European institutes has proven that there is
something to the reputation of kefir. In Rumania where research has been
carried out by Professor Dr. Asian on the causes of old age, the effect
of kefir on prolonging life is being studied. According to gerontologist
at the Genatric Centre of Suchumi (former USSR) the importance of kefir
has not yet been completely recognized. The general opinion is that the
life-prolonging effect is to be attributed to certain components of the
kefir grains.

Moreover, kefir seems to have a stabilizing and, to some extent a
youth-preserving effect on the human organism, but only if one’s entire
diet is completely altered and the kefir is not only consumed as a
side-dish, a snack or a dessert. When following the kefir diet
recommendations developed in Rumania, one’s organism re-adjust within
six months.

The functioning of liver, gallbladder, circulation, heart activity,
metabolism, oxygen supply to the cells, blood circulation to the brain
improves and stabilizes. Also so-called senility does not occur or is
even reversed and the elasticity of the blood vessels and joints is
restored. Rheumatism and coronary thrombosis do not stand a chance if a
special kefir diet is followed: between the ages of 25 and 30 at the
latest 1-1/2 Tblsp. of kefir should be consumed twice a day. Numerous
scientific tests are being performed to determine the effect of kefir
especially in Eastern Europe.

Originally Kefir beverage was obtained by adding the so-called grains to
fresh milk and then incubating them at 64 – 75º F for approx. 24 hours.
The origin of Kefir grains themselves is unknown. To date it has not
been possible to simulate the spontaneous formation of kefir grains
using single isolates of kefir flora. New kefir grains can only be
obtained from propagating and dividing of existing kefir grains.

*CHARACTERISTIC COMPOSITION OF KEFIR FLORA*
Kefir is a natural probiotic.  It contains live active cultures of
normal flora that will actually repopulate your digestive tract and aid
in digestion.  Kefir is superior to yogurt because yogurt is made with
transient, less potent bacteria.

The bacteria in yogurt will last a few days in the digestive tract, and
you need to keep reintroducing them.  Kefir contains more organisms than
yogurt, and the “normal flora” in kefir is made of very strong strains
of micro organisms (unlike yogurt) which will help to over take
pathogenic organisms that have taken over. Kefir will repopulate the
digestive tract with good organisms.  We consider this the more natural
way to add good bacteria to the digestive tract and feel these strains
are superior to any capsules which might contain organisms that have
been dried.

The cultures on Kefir and active and growing when the enter your body.
They thrive in dairy and use up the lactose and partially digest the
proteins, making it a product that most people can ingest and will
benefit from.  Even people with milk sensitivities can usually drink kefir.

In addition to repopulating the digestive tract, enzyme stores are added
to in the body. Many people in the US currently take digestive enzymes.
They have been told they are not digesting their food properly, that
their enzyme stores have run out, and they will have to take enzymes the
rest of their life.  Unfortunately, their health care providers have
missed something that  Sally Fallon and the Weston A. Price people along
with people like Donna Gates of Body Ecology have come to realize: that
cultured foods will actually  add back enzyme stores into the enzyme
banks of the body and aid the body in digesting other foods.

Kefir, cultured cream, buttermilk, cultured vegetables, etc all add
predigested food full of vitamins and minerals, normal flora, and
enzymes to the body.  We believe these are valuable foods, part of all
good traditional diets, that have become lost in the society of today.
And We believe bringing them back is essential for optimal health.

*IS IT DIFFERENT THAN YOGURT?*
Yes.  There is research showing that Yogurt contains left turning
bacteria and kefir contains right turning bacteria.  This researcher
even states that young children and nursing mothers should stay away
from the left turning bacteria found in Yogurt.  He shows from his
research that kefir and its right turning bacteria are far superior and
much more beneficial to the digestive tract than the cultures found in
yogurt.

Yogurt contains transient bacteria and will not repopulate the digestive
tract, but the active, growing, living cultures in kefir will.

The lactose in kefir is all digested by the time it is ingested, and
some of the proteins have been broken down.  Therefore, kefir can be
used by many people who have sensitivities to milk .  The same is not
true with yogurt.  Kefir can be made from any milk: goat, cow, ox,
sheep, etc.  A dairy free kefir can also be made from young coconuts.
This is very exciting.

*IS TAKING PROBIOTICS JUST AS GOOD?*
Probiotics are capsules or tablets that contain some of the same healthy
bacteria found in kefir.  The differences between kefir and probiotics
are significant, however.  While probiotics contain good organisms that
can repopulate the digestive tract, they need to be kept dormant
(refrigerated) and are not actively replicating and growing when they
arrive in your intestines.  In addition, they are not in any medium that
will coat the digestive tract and help them to become established, but
rather they are in the process of being dormant and are actually slowly
decreasing in population as they die off over time.

Kefir, on the other hand has massive quantities of healthy normal flora
that are in the process of growing, increasing in number, and thriving.
They are eaten in the medium they are thriving in, such the cultured
milk or coconut water, which will coat the digestive tract and help them
to establish residence there.  This is a tremendous boost to your
system  and will repopulate your digestive tract more quickly, more
efficiently, and more thoroughly than probiotics.

Midvalleyvu Farms now offers fresh, homemade, raw Kefir for our Farm
Share owners.  If you haven’t tried it yet, be sure to pick up a pint or
quart.  You’ll soon feel what you’ve been missing!

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

_______________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Message: 13      
   Date: Sun, 31 Oct 2004 20:55:34 -0800
   From: 121 <121@llix.net>
Subject: EFFECTS OF KEFIR

*EFFECTS OF KEFIR*

*
*From experience of generations, here are some of the properties
possessed by the real kefir. 
http://www.gewo.applet.cz/health/kefir_manual.htm

* Regulates the body’s immune system and improves resistance to diseases.
* Regulates the blood pressure, blood sugar and cures diabetes.
* Heals the lungs, bronchitis, tuberculosis, asthma, allergies and migraine.
* Has a positive influence on the heart and blood, heals circulatory
conditions.
* Heals various eczema, all skin disorders and leads to cure of acne.
* Heals the kidneys, the urinary tract and protects prostate.
* Has a positive influence on cholesterol, osteoporosis and rheumatism.
* Supports enzymes production and heals the pancreas.
* Improves the liver and gallbladder, regulates bile production,
influences positively hepatitis.
* Regulates metabolism, digestion and heals diseases of the colon.
* Heals colitis, diarrhea, catarrh, reflux, leaky gut syndrome,
candidasis and more.
* Rebalance the intestinal flora and stomach acid, heals duodenum and
cures ulcers.
* Produces its own antibiotics, eliminates unfriendly bacteria, cures
internal and external inflammations.
* Heals lactose intolerance and provides full digestibility of milk
based products.
* Produces own anti-cancer compounds, prevents metastasis, and leads to
cure.
* Slows the aging process, smoothes and improves skin, hair and muscle
tonus.
* Reduces anxiety, depression, increases energy and feeling of wellbeing.
* Produces all necessary vitamins and beneficial bacteria needed for our
healthy daily life.

Almost century of scientific and medical research confirming the above
is available from Diary Research Institute in former USSR. With the
worldwide cost of medical care getting inflated by chronic diseases,
real kefir is gaining popularity not only for its health benefits, but
also for its effects in lowering medical cost. With increasing
resistance to antibiotics, intensive research of the real kefir is
conducted in Europe and Japan. The results are supporting the experience
of generations.

————————————————————————

*_WHAT YOU WILL NEED BEFORE YOU START_*

* One 1.00->1.50 liter mixing bowl with opening similar to the diameter
of strainer.
* One plastic strainer for vegetables with holes about 2-3 millimeters wide.
* Two 1.00 liter clear glass/plastic containers with wider opening and a
lid.
* One cooking thermometer, better digital
* One set of plastic measuring cups.
* One plastic or wooden spoon.
* One flexible scraper.

————————————————————————

*_WHAT MILK TO USE_*

The best is raw goat milk from certified organic farm. However,
pasteurized cows milk with 2%-9% fat content, works also fine. There is
also possibility to produce non-milk kefir, but that’s another story.

————————————————————————

*_FERMENTATION TIME_*

Kefir production and taste is matter of balance between following factors:
—— the amount of grains
more grains = use more milk or set for less time
—— the activity of the grains
less active = use less milk of set for longer time
—— the amount of time
less time = use more grains or use less milk
—— the temperature
warmer = the faster the grains work and grow
—— tightly closed lid or loose lid
  tight = carbonated, loose = non carbonated

In addition to temperature, a pinch or two of unrefined cane sugar helps
the grains to work and grow faster. With established grains and right
balance of factors, common time to full fermentation is around 24H. When
you will be more experienced, you will know how to adjust the factors
and get always the same quality of kefir you like. The kefir grains grow
best when they have steadily their spot in your room, when frequently
agitated during a day, when grains to milk ratio is between 1:20>35,
when room temperature around the glass container is about 25Celsius and
when there is not much of direct light. Should you wish to slow the
fermenting process, do not add the sugar and keep temperature around the
container about 15C.

————————————————————————

*_WHEN IS THE KEFIR READY_*

You can tell by the level of coagulation. The last place of coagulation
is at the bottom of the glass container; you should see curds and whey
separate into layers and pockets. When you turn the container around, if
the coagulated bottom moves as milk, it is not yet ready. When the
coagulated bottom will be firm as a thick jelly, not much moving, it is
ready. It may be tricky when without experience, but within a week or
two, you will find out when kefir is ready. The longer fermentation
time, the sourer the kefir is. If you are in drinking kefir for
eliminating lactose intolerance, you will need to ferment close to 36H.
However, never drink a kefir fermented over 48H, it provides a serious
constipation! With 12H of fermenting, it works like a gentle laxative,
24H gives fully fermented balanced kefir. Overfermenting is not
advisable, since kefir pH becomes too acidic and growth of grains slows.
Normally, the grains tend to double in size about every 20 days. When
you will have more than you need, offer some to your friends or anyone
around the globe who may need their miraculous power. When you do so,
always supply with the grains the Kefir Manual and ask for the symbolic
monetary donation.

————————————————————————

*_BREWING INSTRUCTIONS_*

For start, you should have about 1/4 of teaspoon of real kefir grains,
either fresh or suspended for shipping. If fresh, put them in milk and
they will continue to work right away. If suspended, put them in milk
too, but they will work slow since there is activity recovery time about
4-7 days. If they come in winter, use glass thermometer (for children)
to find their temperature. Warm 1 cup of milk (2% or 3.6%) to the same
temperature (that’s why you have cooking thermometer) as the grains
have. Add to the milk a pinch of unrefined cane sugar, mix to dissolve.
Pour the warm milk to the glass container and move carefully the grains
there. Cover the glass container with a lid, and place it to a warm
(22-25C) and slightly dim spot.

Every few hours agitate/shake gently the glass container for a few
seconds to move fresh milk to the grains. Never place the glass
container in a fridge or on a direct sunlight! When you see on the
bottom of the glass container that the milk is clearly separated into
whey and curds (this may take more than 24H for the first few batches)
shake again to mix the whey and curds into homogenous liquid. Then is
time for first milking!

Take the glass bowl, place plastic strainer on it and pour the whole
content of the glass container to the strainer. Shake the strainer to
separate the thick curds from the grains. The slightly yellow things in
the strainer are your kefir grains. Gently separate the grains from the
curds and place the curds into the glass bowl. What is in the glass bowl
is your first batch of kefir. However, do not drink this first kefir.
Take from it about half of its volume, return it back to the glass
container and throw away the rest of the first kefir. Then add to the
returned kefir 1 1/4 cup of new milk (warm around 20-22C), then move
grains gently with a spoon from the strainer to the glass container.
Cover with a lid. Now you are brewing your second batch!

Again, every few hours shake gently the glass container. When the whey
and curds clearly separate on the bottom, proceed as above. This second
batch is drinkable. However, the right kefir will come after the first
4-6 batches. For the first batches, the ratio between grains and milk
should be 1 part of grains to 20 parts of milk. Later, when your grains
will adapt to their new home and your love, you may achieve ratio up to
1:60 for 24H fermenting. With all the next batches, follow the above
procedure. In principle, always return about 1/2 of the kefir back to
the glass container (don’t forget the grains!) and add the same amount
or more of milk warm between 20-22C.
Those of you, who are into kefir drinking for eliminating candida
overgrowth, may be scared to death learning that kefir culture contains
also candida yeast. Don’t panic, all is OK! The candida yeast in kefir
is a vicious cannibalistic sister of the infamous Candida albicans! In
addition to it, the kefir culture contains host of other microorganism
and all of them eat Candida albicans 24H per day. All available
scientific research and uncountable personal experiences confirm that
drinking kefir will free you (with no side effects) form burden with
candida overgrowth.
This leads one more bit of information – yeast in kefir produce CO_2 gas
and with tightly closed or locked lid, the fully filled container may
explode. If you wish to use very tight lid, never fill the glass
container more than 2/3 of its volume. With a tight lid, you get
carbonated kefir. With lose lid, you get flat kefir.

————————————————————————

*_DRINKING KEFIR_*

Small glass, 3/4 to 1 cup daily, preferably after the evening meal, is a
common prevention drink. Kefir is not only special nourishment, but also
special medication. If kefir drinking is intended for treating serious
diseases, it is advisable to change diet to living foods, then detoxify
and cleanse the body, liver, kidneys and bowels. This greatly increases
effects of healing properties of kefir. For candida overgrowth or
general disorders of colon, take 1 cup first thing on the morning and 1
cup one hour after supper for 3 days, then for 3 days take no kefir.
Apply this on and off regime for 3-4 weeks. If no relief was obtained,
you may gradually double dosage and continue for 3 months or more.
However, even when you will have kefir pause, the grains don’t pause.
You must regularly milk the grains and feed them as if you would need to
drink the kefir!
The same on and off regime applies to eczema, skin problems, acne,
allergies, arthritis and so on. When chronically ill with a serious
disease, again, the same regime applies. Start with 1 cup first thing on
the morning and 1 cup one hour after supper. Within a week, gradually
increase to 2 cups & 2 cups per day. At this time you may experience
body rash or shingles, however, gradually increase to 3 cups & 3 cups
per day and continue for at least 6 months. If wasting continues,
gradually increase to 4 cups & 4 cups per day for 20 days then do not
drink kefir for 10 days. Then drink 20 days.
Apply this potent on/off regime for the next months. Although there are
many documented studies that kefir is able to miraculously heal even
gravely ill, kefir is a gift of God, not omnipotent God.

For generations, the people from Caucasus give kefir to newborns as a
substitute or addition to mother’s milk, they also drink pure glacial
water; breath unpolluted air, eats living foods and thickened kefir as
bread or dessert. Their verified life span in a full physical and mental
acuity, lies between 110 – 140 years (the last is not a rare
occurrence), they have no cavities, they are free of diabetes, prostate,
tuberculosis, digestive disorders, cancers and other common diseases of
our highly evolved society. Clearly, prevention and living food is the
best thing for health and longevity.

WITH LOVE AND WISHES OF GOOD HEALTH !

_______________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Message: 14      
   Date: Sun, 31 Oct 2004 21:12:08 -0800
   From: 121 <121@llix.net>
Subject: Health properties of kefir

For complete web page go to: *
http://coproweb.free.fr/kefiranglais.htm
*

*Health properties of kefir*
       Kefir enjoys a rich tradition of health claims. In the former
Soviet Union, it is used in hospitals and sanatoria for a variety of
conditions, including metabolic disorders, atherosclerosis, and allergic
disease (1). It has even been used for the treatment of tuberculosis,
cancer, and gastrointestinal disorders when no modern medical treatment
was available. Its consumption has also been associated with longevity
in Caucasus (20) . Various scientists have observed digestive benefits
of kefir (21, 22) , but controlled studies have yet to confirm their
empirical findings.

        Various research teams around the world have reported
encouraging results, but several methodological difficulties still need
to be resolved. Most studies to date have been performed in vitro or
using animal models, and human studies are not available.  Further, the
effects of kefir grains or their isolates are often studied, rather than
the product kefir, and there is no evidence that the observed effects
would occur using the drink itself. Also, kefir products vary
significantly according to the composition of the grains used and even
according to the region in which it is made, and therefore specific
effects may not be demonstrated in all kefirs. Given these caveat, a
variety of health benefits are being investigated. Table 3 presents
recent studies using kefir products.

        Several studies have investigated the antitumor activity of
kefir (20, 23, 24) and of kefir grains (25, 26) . Specific cultures
isolated from kefir were also shown to bind to mutagenic substances such
as indole and imidazole (27, 28). Immune system stimulation with kefir
(24) and with sphingomyelin isolated from the lipids of kefir (29) have
been demonstrated in both in vitro and in vivo studies.

        Kefir (30) possesses antimicrobial activity in vitro against a
wide variety of gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria (20, 31), and
against some fungi (20) . In Zacconi et al.ís recent study (30), the
antagonistic effects of kefir against Salmonella kedougou were
attributed to the complexity and vitality of the kefir microflora. De
Vrese et al . (32) demonstrated that fresh, but not heat treated,
disintegrated kefir grains suspended in kefir directly enhanced
intestinal lactose digestion in minipigs. This effect was attributed to
microbial b-galactosidase activity of kefir.  The above studies provide
encouraging results, but much more research is necessary in order to
demonstrate similar effects using kefir in humans. Further, a
standardized, well-defined product must be used in order to provide
useful information.

*Abstract*
Research on fermented milks (FM) has grown dramatically in the past 20
years. FM have probiotic effects since their consumption leads to the
ingestion of large numbers of live bacteria which exert health benefits
beyond basic nutrition. Major results of research are as follows. Yogurt
consumption reduces symptoms of lactose maldigestion compared to milk.
FM, may have antibacterial and immunological properties. Ingestion of
the lactic acid bacteria bifidobacteria improves the colonic microflora
by increasing bifidobacteria levels. Lactobacillus casei reduces the
duration of some types of diarrhea. Future research conducted using
human subjects, with rigorous methodology and modern statistical
analysis, will provide further information on the health benefits of FM.

*Keywords:* fermented milk, probiotic, yogurt, kefir, Lactobacillus
streptococcus, Streptococcus thermophilus, Lactobacillus casei,
bifidobacterium

*Glossary*
       Lactic acid bacteria (LAB): a large group of bacteria with the
common characteristic of producing lactic acid as the principal end
product of metabolism; found in milk and other natural environments LAB
can be: a. homofermentative: produce 70-90% lactic acid; e.g., L.
bulgaricus, S. thermo-philus, L. acidophilus b. heterofermentative:
produce at least 50% lactic acid plus other compounds such as acetic
acid, CO2, and ethanol; e.g., L. casei, bifidobacteria a. mesophilic:
grow best at a temperature range of 25-30¡C; e.g., L. casei b.
thermophilic: prefer a range of 40-44¡C; e.g., L. bulgaricus, S.
thermophilus a. Facultatively prefer anaerobic anaerobic: conditions for
metabolism, but are aero-tolerant (most LAB fit in this b. Strictly
anaerobic: survive only in anaerobic conditions; e.g., bifidobacteria

*Functional foods:*
       Foods that, by virtue of physiologically active food components,
provide health benefits beyond basic nutrition (Working definition of
ILSI Functional Food Task Force, Brussels, February 17,1997).
Interleukin, interferon, tumor necrosis factor: examples of cytokines,
which serve as signals between cells involved in immune response. sIgA:
secretory immunoglobulin A; principal antibody produced by the gut
immune system.

        Azoreductase,§-glucuronidase, glycocholic acid hydrolase,
nitroreductase: colonic enzymes implicated in the conversion of
procarcinogens to carcinogens.  LDL/HDL: ratio between blood levels of
low density lipoprotein and high density lipoprotein; level above 3
indicates increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Breath hydrogen
test: measurement of hydrogen expired after oral lactose load of 12-50 g
compared to base level; > 10-20 ppm indicates malabsorption.

*From legend to science: Historical perspective*
       For centuries, fermented milks have been purported to provide a
large gamut of health benefits, from improving well-being to increasing
longevity. One story recounts that in the sixteenth century, King
Fran*ois the First of France suffered from persistent diarrhea, and
after several unsuccessful treatments, a Turkish doctor was sent in. He
brought with him sheep and a secret recipe for yogurt. The king was soon
cured of his intestinal infection.

Scientific interest began much later, in the early twentieth century,
when Elie Metchnikoff, a Nobel-prize winning biologist at the Pasteur
Institute in Paris, first suggested that lactobacilli might counteract
the putrefactive effects of gastrointestinal metabolism (1). In the past
twenty years, scientific research has blossomed, with an interest in
topics ranging from antimicrobial effects to reduction of risk of
cancer. Much valuable preliminary work has been done using animal or in
vitro models, which allow for much greater control over variables than
when studying humans, and which offer reproducible results. These models
are also useful for studying the mechanisms involved.

 

Studying the effects of FM on humans presents several challenges.
Fermented milksare unctional foods, and as such, their impact on human
physiology is of a small amplitude and not easily detected. Also, early
humans studies, though numerous, were generally case reports rather than
modern experimental studies (randomized). Currently, researchers are
beginning to address these methodological problems.

*Yogurt, the ever-popular fermented milk*
       According to the Codex Alimentarius (5), yogurt is milk (usually
cowís milk) that has been fermented by Streptococcus thermophilus and
Lactobacillus bulgaricus under defined conditions of time and
temperature. Each species of bacteria stimulates the growth of the
other, and the products of their combined metabolism produce the
characteristic creamy texture and mild acid flavor. Fermentation is
stopped by cooling, and the final product, which contains100-1000
million live bacteria per ml, is refrigerated until use. As a fresh
dairy product, it has a limited shelf-life.

*1. Milk digestibility*
       Given all the research to date on FM, the fact that lactose is
better digested from yogurt than from milk by lactase-deficient
individuals is the most well-established health benefit (6). Yogurt
ingestion leads both to less hydrogen production in the breath hydrogen
test (lactose maldigestion) (Figure 1) and to reduced symptoms (lactose
intolerance) (Marteau, 1990; Lerebours,1989; Kolars, 1984). This effect
is related to the living bacteria, the enzymatic content ( e.g
,§-galactosidase), and the texture of yogurt.

*2. Recovery from diarrhea*
       Yogurt reduces the duration of certain types of diarrhea,
especially in children (Niv, 1963; Boudraa, 1990). The World Health
Organization (WHO, 1995) recommends that during treatment of diarrhea,
yogurt should replace milk when available since it is better tolerated
than milk and can help prevent malnutrition or reestablish nutritional
adequacy.

*3. Immunomodulating effects*
       Yogurt has been shown to enhance various parameters of the immune
system in invitro models (13) and in mice (14-16). In humans, one study
found an improvement in clinical symptoms of nasal allergy, but no
changes in any parameters tested (17) . A recent report with atopic
subjects found no significant modification of immune system parameters,
showing that there was no aggravation of the immune system caused by
yogurt (18) . Very high concentrations of yogurt bacteria have led to
increases in IFNy, B lymphocytes, and natural killer cells (19) , and
yogurt consumption increased 2í,5í-a synthetase activity (a reflection
of production of IFNy) (20).

*4. Reduction of risk of cancer*
       A recent epidemiological study from France showed that people
consuming yogurt had less risk of developing large colorectal adenomas
(21). In addition, the consumption of yogurt in elderly subjects with
atrophic gastritis led to a decrease in the procarcinogenic fecal
enzymes nitroreductase and azoreductase (22). Research in this field is
intriguing, but preliminary.

*
*

*5. Blood cholesterol levels*
       Mann and Spoerry (23) reported over 20 years ago that Maasai
warriors consumed several liters of FM per day and yet had low serum
cholesterol levels. This observation sparked a series of conflicting
studies on the possible hypocholesterolemic properties of yogurt and
other FM. Results have been inconsistent (24). What is clear is that
regular consumption of yogurt does not increase plasma cholesterol
concentration (24, 25); yogurt can be part of the daily intake of
individuals who are concerned about heart disease.

*Kefir, another traditional fermented milk*
       Kefir is a stirred beverage made from milk fermented with a
complex mixture of bacteria (including various species of lactobacilli,
lactococci, leuconostocs, and aceterobacteria) and yeasts (both
lactose-fermenting and non-lactose-fermenting). The small amount of CO2,
alcohol, and aromatic compounds produced by the cultures give it its
characteristic fizzy, acid taste (26). Kefir fabrication differs from
that of yogurt in that kefir grains (small clusters of microorganisms
held together in a polysaccharide matrix) or mother cultures from grains
(27) are added to milk and cause its fermentation. Kefir is actually a
family of products, in that the grains and technology used can vary
significantly and thus result in products with different compositions.

        Many health benefits have been traditionally reported. Kefir has
been used for the treatment of atherosclerosis, allergic disease, and
gastrointestinal disorders, among other diseases (28). Until recently,
most research has been limited to studies lacking modern statistical
practices or to reports written up in Slavic languages, rendering them
inaccessible to most western scientists.

        Recent studies have investigated antibacterial (29),
immunological(30), antitumoral (31), and hypocholesterolemic(32) effects
of kefir consumption on animals. Results suggest potential benefits.
Fresh, but not heat-treated grains in kefir enhanced intestinal lactose
digestion in minipigs (33). While awaiting more research, it is
important to remember that kefir, like yogurt, has been and continues to
be a part of the regular diet in central and eastern Europe for
centuries.  Bifidobacterium: a natural inhabitant of the intestines
Bifidobacteria were first described in 1900 by Tissier (34) . Since that
time, their classification has evolved continually, and currently
includes around thirty species (35, 36) . In general, they are strictly
anaerobic, Gram-positive rods which often have special nutritional needs
and grow slowly in milk. Very few strains are adapted well enough to
milk that they both grow in sufficient numbers and survive well
throughout the shelf-life of the FM.

        Although bifidobacteria produce both lactic acid and acetic acid
as major end-products of metabolism (heterofermentative), many
microbiologists consider them to be lactic acid bacteria, albeit a
special case.  Tissierís hypothesis almost 100 years ago that
bifidobacteria might have health benefits(37) was based on the following
observations. Bifidobacteria are normal inhabitants of the human
intestinal tract throughout the life cycle, beginning just days after
birth. Further, they are often the predominant microorganism in the gut
of breast-fed infants. It has since been shown that breast-fed babies
are less at risk for diarrheal disease than formula-fed infants (38).
In addition to the above inherent characteristics of bifidobacteria,
some strains of the micro-organism survive intestinal transit in
sufficient numbers to exert a metabolic effect in the gut (39,40).

*1. Effects on the intestinal microflora*
       Ingestion of milk fermented with bifidobacteria leads to an
increase in fecal bifidobacteria levels, both in infants (43) and in
adults (44) . Elevated levels return to normal after cessation of
consumption (39). Ingestion of FM with bifidobacteria has also led to a
decrease in §-glucuronidase activity, but not in other enzymes
associated with colon (44).

*2. Effect on mild constipation*
       Slow intestinal transit can be partially corrected in women by
the regular consumption of a milk fermented with yogurt cultures and
bifidobacteria (41). This effect was not observed with yogurt as a
control, thus demonstrating the specificity of bifidobacteria for the
increased colonic motility (42).

*3. Prevention of diarrhea*
       Few studies have been performed. One double-blind study of
infants demonstrated that a formula with added B. bifidum and S.
thermophilus reduced the incidence of hospital-acquired diarrhea
compared to a standard formula. It also lowered the rate of rotavirus
shedding into the environment (45).

*4. Immunomodulating effects*
       Ingestion of milk fermented with B. bifidum led to an increase in
phagocytic activity in peripheral blood compared to milk consumption
(46). A mixture of B. bifidum and L. acidophilus decreased chronic
inflammation of the sigmoid colon and increased humoral immunity in a
group of elderly subjects (47).

*Lactobacillus casei: new interest in an old bacteria*

        The group L. casei consists of several species of facultatively
anaerobic and hetero-fermentative, mesophilic lactic acid bacteria(48).
Their metabolism provides organoleptic qualities to several traditional
FM and cheeses, and more recently, to new fermented milks. L. casei have
been detected in the feces of both infants (49) and adults (50). Their
ability to survive transit through the intestinal tract in adequate
numbers to have a physiological effect (50) , coupled with their
potential health benefits make L. casei an ideal candidate for a probiotic.

*1. Treatment of diarrhea*
       Several double blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials have
demonstrated that oral consumption of L. casei reduces the duration of
diarrhea (51), and in particular, rotavirus gastroenteritis (52) in
children. In addition, L. casei may help reduce the duration of diarrhea
associated with children in day care centers (53), antibiotic treatment
(54) and travelerís diarrhea (55).

*
*

*2. Effects on the intestinal microflora*
       In addition to increasing lactobacilli count in feces (50), milk
fermented with L. casei has been shown to lower the activity of the
colonic enzymes §-glucuronidase (50, 56), glycocholic acid reductase,
and nitroreductase (56) in healthy adults. A recent study demonstrated a
decrease in §-glucuronidase and §-glucosidase activities in infants
after ingestion of a milk fermented with yogurt cultures and L. casei.
This effect was not found with yogurt alone or with gelled milk
(control) (57) , thus suggesting that the modification was due to L.
casei or to the association between L. casei and yogurt.

*3. Immunomodulating effects*
       Challenge tests ( e.g ., using Salmonella typhimurium ) with oral
ingestion of L. casei in mice has led to increased protection in animals
infected with pathogenic bacteria (58, 59). A few reports using human
subjects have shown an enhancement of non-specific immune system
activators, such as y interferon and interleukins (ex vivo) (60) and of
specific immune responses to various challenges, including rotavirus
vaccine (61).  In a recent study infants with atopic dermatitis were
given formula with added L. casei. Not only did the concentration of
fecal tumor necrosis factor-a decrease significantly (a measure of the
immune response), but clinical symptoms improved as well (62) .
Viability of the bacteria is an important factor of its effectiveness (61).

*Other probiotics*
       In addition to the probiotics discussed above, other bacteria,
some well known and some more recent, offer additional health benefits.
In particular, much research has been conducted on L. acidophilus.
Several studies suggest a hypocholesterolemic effect of L. acidophilus
(63) , while others have investigated its ability to prevent various
types of diarrhea (64) and to reduce the incidence of candidal vaginitis
(65).

In addition, consumption of L. acidophilus has led to modifications of
various parameters of the immune system (46), and to a decrease in
several fecal enzymes associated with colon cancer (66). Less well-known
bacteria include Lb. helveticus (67), L. plantarum(68) , and L. reuteri
(69). These lactic acid bacteria have different microbiolog

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kefir | 10 Comments

Does/can KT interfere with absorption of antibiotics?

  Does/can KT interfere with the absorption of antibiotics?From: Colleen Allen <chaugen@direct.ca>

The destruction of certain antibiotics are accelerated by the increased acid content in the stomach from acidic foods. Of course Kombucha falls under that category too. So it would be a good idea to take your antibiotic a couple hours before, or a couple hours after eating or drinking acidic food.

The information source for the following is: The Drug and Food Interaction [NMSU College of Agriculture & Home Economics] Guide E-507 by Alice Jane Hendley, Diet and Health Specialist.

EFFECTS OF FOODS AND NUTRIENTS ON DRUGS

If you take antibiotics be careful with acidic foods such as caffeine, tomatoes, fruit juices.  Acidic foods can increase destruction of the antibiotic in the stomach.

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kombucha | Leave a comment

Why white sugar?

WHY WHITE SUGAR?

Q I am very health-conscious – do I have to use white sugar?

A Many health-conscious people are surprised to be told to use refined white sugar in making Kombucha tea and ask whether there is an alternative.

KOMBUCHA NEEDS SUGAR

Just as we need various sugars in order to survive, the Kombucha culture requires sugar and energy, in addition to the minerals and nitrogen it gets from tea, in order for the process of metabolism to take place. The culture cannot provide its own, therefore you have to provide sugar for it. Sugar is used in assimilation and respiration for most of the fermentation, and during its course is broken down and transformed into acids, vitamins, minerals, enzymes and carbon dioxide. Sugar is also involved in the propagation of the Kombucha culture. At the end of the fermentation period, if done correctly, the sugar will have been virtually all converted and will therefore have been rendered harmless.

Various sugars need to be looked at in order to establish which is better to use for the Kombucha fermentation:

     Household Sugar (granulated) – is refined white sugar and is called sucrose.

     Brown Sugar – most brown sugars, generally considered a more healthy choice than white, are only refined white sugar which has got its colour from a small amount of caramel or molasses added to it.

     Unrefined Brown Sugar – this is raw sugar and has a very strong flavour.

     Raw Cane Sugar – is made mostly into refined white sugar with the remainder steam-heated and sold as pure    cane sugar.

     Pure Cane Sugar – is a healthier alternative to granulated white sugar and contains vitamins, minerals and   trace elements etc.

     In tests using both unrefined brown sugar and raw cane sugar in the Kombucha fermentation the following  results were found:

     The solution was dark and cloudy

     The taste was quite unpleasant

     A poorly-formed culture had formed

     There was more yeast sediment

     It contained fewer health-giving organic acids

We decided from this, and from other research and information, that unrefined or raw brown sugar was not suitable for the Kombucha fermentation. Refined white sugar – either granulated or pure cane sugar – is preferable because:

     It is transformed during the fermentation process

     It provides a good nutrient solution for the metabolism of the Kombucha tea

     A healthy culture forms on which to propagate further

     It produces a beverage high in organic acids

     It makes a good and palatable drink

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kombucha | 6 Comments

KT – Pu Erh Tea

  From: HerbalMomma <HerbalMomma@aol.com>
>Wow!!! What a wonderful testimonial!!! What exactly is PuEhr Tea? Can you give me a link to find some information on it? Namaste, HerbalMomma

What is so special about PuErh Tea?

A bit of mystique surrounds PuErh Tea. PuErh comes from one place – Yunnan province in China. The leaves come from the “Dayeh” (large leaf variety of the large leaf tea tree, which is more closely related to the original ancient tea tree of pre-glaciation time, than the more common smaller-leafed tea plant. It is special due to many factors; it is an
unusual large leafed tea variety, and enjoys special growing conditions because of the climate and soil in the Nuoshan Mountains, and has been famous as a ‘medicinal’ tea for centuries. After a minimum of processing similar to an Oolong process), PuErh is aged in deep mountain caves, and a well-aged PuErh (25-30 years) can command a price of $800(US) or more, per20pound!

PuErh in History For centuries, the PuErh tea was carried down from the Nuoshan Mountains in shoulder baskets through primeval forests for processing and sale in the tea market at the county town of Pu’er. Located in central south Yunnan, Pu’er County itself does not grow tea, but the name it has given to this variety has become internationally known. Traditionally, the PuErh Tea was formed into bricks or cakes and used as a form of currency. It is thought the Kubla Khan and his Mongolian invaders were responsible for introducing PuErh and the knowledge of its medicinal values to the rest of China

Medicinal Properties of PuErh Tea
In the 1970’s, Chinese doctors in Kumming reported clinical experiments in which drinking PuErh was shown to lower cholesterol levels in the bloodstream. French researchers at St. Antoine Hospital in Paris duplicated
these results and found that three cups of PuErh tea a day for one month brought lipids down 25 percent in patients, while those on other teas showed no change. These tests showed PuErh performed at least as well as clofibrate, the most advanced medicine for the purpose, without the drug’s side effects. It has since been shown to help reduce body weight. Many report that drinking it after meals relieves any overstuffed feelings and aids digestion. The Chinese claim that PuErh can also lower blood alcohol after drinking, relieve hang-over symptoms, prevent dysentery, and stimulate secretions from the spleen and other organs. People who brew their Kombucha Tea with PuErh are reporting better circulation to the extremities, relief from the pain of varicose veins, and some improvement with peripheral neuropathy. Kombucha brewed with PuErh Tea seems to provide great relief from symptoms of digestive problems such as Acid Reflux, Common Indigestion, IBS, Crohn’s Disease and other related ailments. (SeeKombucha Survey Results)

How is PuErh processed?
Again, the mystique of PuErh. The secrets involving the harvesting,production, and processing of PuErh have been closely guarded for centuries in China. The type of Tea Plant seems to be quite important, and it can be made from Green, White, or Oolong leaves. The tea is collected from growers of a special broad-leafed tea tree, which is said to be related to ancient prehistoric tea plants. The tea is then carefully processed with a type of second fermentation, which gives it its unique characteristics, a mild but very distinctive earthy flavor. Pu-erh is fermented a little longer than oolongs, but far less than Black Teas. Microorganisms play a part here, and contribute during the fermentation , creating the ‘earthy flavor’ that sets PuErh apart from other teas. Many people in Southeast Asia believe that Pu-erh tea with a light layer of mold is the best.

PuErh can be made of green white or Oolong tea and from different types of tea plants. The method of processing used to be the same as that used to process the Chien-An tribute tea from Fujian.

Due to special processing, Pu-erh is low in tannins and has a characteristic earthy flavor. It is thought to improve with age and very old samples can be incredibly expensive.

PuErh is found in loose form, as well as pressed (Tuocha) bowls, cakes, round, oblong, and square shaped. Loose, Green PuErh is a true delicacy,and rather difficult to obtain.

Who Drinks PuErh?

For many centuries, the people of Tibet and China have consumed PuErh Tea to help lower blood pressure, and in ancient texts, PuErh is credited to’clarify the arteries and blood vessels’. The nomadic people at the ‘top of the world’ tend to enjoy their PuErh in a rather unique way. When traveling through that harsh and barren landscape, they carry cakes of blocks of PuErh with them. When tea is needed, it is broken off in chunks or shaved off the block or cake with a heavy, sharp knife. In the darkness of early pre-dawn morning, the designated fire builder will construct a fire fueled by yak dung. The iron boiling pot is placed on the fire, water is boiled for a long period (for purification), and a generous quantity of PuErh is dumped into the boiling water and allowed to boil until sunrise. Here comes the good part=85..into the resulting tea is placed a chunk of rock-salt and generous dollop of yak butter. Many Tibetan refugees, when asked about the things they miss most from their homeland, will tell you that the delicacy they dream of is their beloved ‘butter-tea’. Indeed, this is truly a ‘wake up – ready to face the world’ beverage, and is definitely an acquired taste!

Chances are you don’t have a yak, and neither do your neighbors. Your cupboard may be devoid of rock-salt, and you might be forced to boil water in a conventional teapot on your kitchen range. However, you can enjoy the
distinctive flavor and health benefits of PuErh tea anytime you wish. Remember that PuErh enjoys a true “boil”, unlike its delicate cousin
“Green Tea”.

Enjoy your adventure with PuErh!

Ariana
From Harmonic Harvest website
http://www.harmonicharvest.com/Pu-Erh_teas.html
Bob

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kombucha | 2 Comments

Dr. Pierre Joly

  Moderator:  I received this in French from Dr. Pierre Joly mailto:micot@quanta.net.py.  Translation is by machine so it is a little rough.  He is providing a summary of kombucha knowledge he has at this point.Bob

Other uses at least known of K <Other uses and effects of KT-bob>E Groups French-speaking of Kombucha  Date: Wednesday February 7 2001

Other uses little known of Kombucha After the Second World war, the Soviet Union applied itself in the search widened on K in of veterinary use. A named preparation Bactericidin made starting from symbiosis K was tested on dogs, sheep, calves and other mammals. The clinical tests with the lambs and  calves suffering from dysentery and colibacillosis made it possible to obtain a remission with 100%. To mix K with the food of chickens made it possible to increase the growth of chicks of 15%.Harald W Tietze mentions that it undertook a search on ewes and calves, reached diarrhoea and obtained 100% of success. There is more, the animals in good health saw their growth increasing by 15% by adding K to their feed. Several people give K to their dogs and cats in order to improve their health. According to certain experts, including Betsy Pryor, the tea K makes it possible to eliminate the bad breath from the dogs as well as a strong body odor .And since you are in search and the discoveries, I can say to you that I also learned that a K culture buried at the foot of dying trees they regained life. K is also used in compress, in ointment, made starting from  the culture K or the tea of K. For the psoriasis amongst other things combined with silica gel with external as to the intern it appears that that gives famous results. Cuts, burns cure more quickly when one applies K  above.

There are some of its properties which recut <resemble?> those of the aloe freezing. We used ourself K in our hair, on our skin… are conscious that this product can add more worth to the beauty products.

We also developed an excellent champagne

June 23, 2007 Posted by | Kombucha | Leave a comment