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Lives Touched by Cultured Foods


Ask and it is Given
Ask and it is Given

Everyone needs reminders that the fact of their being on this earth is important and that each life changes everything. ~Marge Kennedy

I get a lot of emails telling me how cultured foods have touched and changed people’s lives. Often, well almost always,  they will make me tear up as I read them. You see, it was 12 years ago that I was one of the people who was sick and desperate to feel better. I thought my body had betrayed me with sickness and disease and I was on a never-ending quest to find the answer. One day, with tears rolling down my cheeks, I prayed and made a promise. If I could receive healing for myself and my family, I promised that I would tell others. The answers came swiftly and in a way that surprised me. The answer revealed itself to me in food I had never heard of – cultured foods. The despair and health problems my family and I had experienced lifted. The suffering was replaced with joy, gratefulness, and well being.

At first I was hesitant to tell anyone about these special probiotic foods I made. When I tried, I got comments like, “You make them without canning? Do you think that’s safe?  How come I’ve never heard of these foods and  nobody’s doing this but you? This sounds crazy, Donna!” It looked like I was doing science projects on my counter, not making power foods that could change your life. These foods are one of the safest ways to preserve and protect your foods. The good bacteria dominate and protect the foods from harm; it’s science, but how do I tell others without sounding like a nut? These foods had made me well and I felt such gratefulness and I had promised to tell others. I just had to find a way.

fermentsI started with a couple of friends. Their kids were sick with food allergies and asthma and they were constantly sick. It broke my heart. One day, sitting at the table and watching my friend’s little boy wheezing and coughing I broke. I started telling her how I thought these foods could help him. I started talking and couldn’t stop. It was like a dam inside of me broke and I just remember not wanting to take a breath for fear that she would stop me and tell me I was crazy. But instead, she listened. She started making kefir and cultured foods, and a few months later she told me her little boy wasn’t using his asthma inhaler any more. It was so powerful that her little 6-year-old boy knew that he had to have his kefir to keep his symptoms away. She told me once that she had stopped feeding him kefir for a month and one morning standing in the kitchen he demanded that she feed him his kefir. He knew his body needed it because his symptoms were returning without it. The other friend listened, too, and started feeding her little girl cultured foods, and I watched as her food allergies healed. It was the start for me. When we would get together, all we could talk about was cultured foods and then others accused us of having a food cult. It was pretty funny. But there was no denying what was happening. People were getting well all around me and it started to grow and spread like crazy.

I never wanted to teach a class, but people kept asking and then when I did, the stories really started growing. People were getting better, food and seasonal allergies were healing, ulcers were going away, acid reflux was disappearing, and constipation was a thing of the past. Blood sugars were getting better and high blood pressure was lowering, and the list kept growing. I would well up inside when they would tell me these stories. I could see what a miracle they thought it was, and I was so grateful that I was using my own life lessons with purpose.

Meet my friends, kefir, kombucha and cultured vegetables.
Meet my friends, kefir, kombucha and cultured vegetables.

I hope you can feel the heart of who I am. I want to share with others and help them because I am so thankful for the life I have now. You really can feel good every day and live the life of your dreams. I cannot begin to express to you what has happened to my life since I started down this road. It has touched every part of my life. It started with a cultured food named kefir, which sat upon my counter and  was infused with probiotic cultures. When I consumed it, I was made well. So simple and inexpensive, and these cultures grew so I could share it with my friends.  It was the perfect answer for me, for my friends, and for you, too.

I  have gathered some of these stories and made a page on my site called Lives Touched. The stories below are just a few of the amazing life stories my friends have shared with me. To see all of them, go  to  Lives Touched. I hope these stories will touch your life, too. If you’d like to know more about these foods, you can go here. Three Foods That Can Change Your Life.

For, you see… I still have a promise to keep.


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I would love to hear how cultured foods have changed your lives! Click here to submit your own story.


Dear Donna,I am thankful that my husband made it out alive from Tower 1 on 9/11 (with 8 minutes to spare). I am also very thankful for you, Donna, because he has recovered from 11 years of PTSD due to 9/11, partially because of you.

It was after we started drinking kefir every day that he really started doing better despite everything we had done herbally and nutritionally for him. He is off all medications and is doing great! He was unemployed for much of those 11 years and we have 7 children! Talk about stress!!! Now we make 2 gallons of kefir every day and drink every bit of it. The kids love it, and I feel better and so does my husband.

You’ve given all 9 of us a new lease on life. If only you knew how terribly awful our lives have been for the past 11 years. The only light at the end of the tunnel was the oncoming train. I feel like a little girl on Christmas morning every morning now. I truly love life now! Thank you, Donna!!!


Donna,This is so emotional! I can’t believe I was privileged enough to be the mother of a miracle – and YES, I truly believe he is a miracle! I NEVER expected my son to walk or talk or be “normal” when he was a baby! Now he is SO SMART and his brain is always on and processing! I remember when he was still in his stupor, and you made a comment about how he takes everything in and is so observant, and you could see his brain working – yet he couldn’t communicate or even crawl at that time – he was!! He was storing all that info for later!

I wanted to let you know that the little brain that wasn’t able to talk for the longest time and just gazed around like he couldn’t comprehend anything …. THAT little brain IS READING!!! AT 3 YEARS OLD! I kid you not, Donna! I think he will start piano lessons soon – he LOVES music … Watch, Donna ~ his successes are because of your food cult and your enthusiasm for food! We started sprouting, making coconut kefir, kombucha (which he BEGS for!), lots of cultured veggies, and tons of Bubbies pickles! I decided that since we ran out of coconut milk … we might as well go with raw milk on Saturday! And he did great. I AM THRILLED!!!!

I can’t tell you how big of a breakthrough this is for us! I even gave him raw milk and his sprouted cookies for a snack today! It has been a very hard road for us that we are still on – but our road has been made so much smoother because of your help! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU for your help and for never tiring of my scoffing!


Donna,I really can’t say thank you enough for introducing me to cultured foods. Nothing is harder for a parent than watching your child be sick. My son, Daniel, was in the NICU for a week when he was born, because they thought he had spinal meningitis. He was drenched in antibiotics and thank God it turned out to be false. However, as I learned after meeting you, killing all the good bacteria in his body as a newborn left him with a lot of health problems. He had many food allergies and showed signs of ADD, hyperactivity, and Dyslexia. He also seemed to catch every cold and flu that went around and would be sick for several days.

We used your grains to start making kefir for him as an alternative to the milk he was allergic to.  He absolutely loved it and showed no sign of reaction to it. We noticed that he seemed able to focus more and had fewer behavior problems. Kefir also me helped me feel better, so I went one step further and made Shelly’s Cultured Vegetables from your book to try for myself.  He came down with the flu and I thought, what the heck, might as well give it to him. We gave him a spoonful every hour or so and by that evening he was running around being a normal 4-year-old boy, so we kept feeding it to him every day.

That is when things really started to change. He has lost all signs of his ADD, is able to focus, and doesn’t get sick all the time like he used to. I was so shocked by the effect cultured foods had on his mental health and behavior. I started researching it and found so much evidence to support what you have been teaching all along. Now he eats cultured vegetables and kefir every day. I know the whole course of his life has been changed for the better. He will spend so much more of his life being well and will be able to do so many more things because he won’t be sick all the time. He will be able to focus better in school and have less behavior issues.  It is impossible to measure how much the possibilities of his life have been changed for the better and that is why I can’t thank you enough.

Jeremiah England

3 Responses to "Lives Touched by Cultured Foods"
  1. I am so inspired with my new found kombucha addiction!!!!!!!!!! I got a scoby from my cousins friend and I am in love! At the bebinning of 2013 I began eating healthy, researching healthy alternatives, quit artificial sweeteners, all kinds of things! I try to read everything you write! I need kefir grains too. I wonder if you might check out this herbal coffee and tea named Javita for me and let me know what you think too? Thanks and be blessed!

  2. I keep up with all your emails and recipes. This new one is so inspireing.
    I will forward it to my friends.
    Thanks so much. Keep sharing.

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