My childhood nickname was “Tiger.” I always hated that name and got teased about it quite often. Then this year on Valentine’s Day, my husband wrote me a sweet card and in it he told me that he tells everybody I am a force to be reckoned with. We had just come back from teaching a class in Florida and in light of certain events, I couldn’t argue with his conclusions.
When I taught my class in Florida, I went to the store to pick up my 30 cabbages, 50 apples, and 50 oranges for class. Everybody was going to make cultured vegetables and I went to pick up the groceries I had ordered days before. The store assured me they would have them ready for me.
These are not just cabbages!
When I got there they told me they didn’t have any cabbages, or couldn’t find them, and kind of shrugged their shoulders and said, “Sorry.” Well, this did not sit well with me, and like a one-woman army I marched to the produce section of the store and blasted through the doors that were labeled in red, “EMPLOYEES ONLY.” There I found several young employees looking at me with wide eyes, telling me that I wasn’t allowed back there and sorry, but there were no cabbages – they just forgot, or it was a mistake, nobody knew.
I looked those young men straight in the eyes and said, “You don’t realize what you have just done. I have over 50 people flying in from all over the country to make these special foods. These cabbages will make a cultured food that can transform a life and not only have you let me down but 50 other people who are counting on me to help them. Your job is IMPORTANT even if it’s “just” working with fruits and vegetables, so don’t take it lightly! Now find me my cabbages and make this right! YOU COULD CHANGE SOMEBODY’S LIFE!” Then I marched out the door to find my husband and did my best to calm down. He was talking to the manager who started calling all over town looking for cabbages. The next thing I knew, I had all my cabbages and fruit and they sent me out the door and didn’t charge me for any of the produce. Those boys who handle the produce apologized profusely and I am sure they will either write me off as a crazy person or hopefully realize how important their jobs actually are.
Oh dear . . . people shouldn’t mess with me and my cabbages or the people I love who I’m here to help. I take this seriously, and I will teach everybody that cabbages can change your life and they’re not just fruits and vegetables, they’re powerful medicine. Okay, I’m going to stop now since this is starting to sound like a sermon. The really funny thing is that every health food store in that part of Florida started following me on Twitter and Facebook. I think I caused a ruckus and cabbages will hopefully be plentiful when I return to do more classes. I really do love these foods and I love what I do.
Dorothy Rybaczyk-Pathak from the University of New Mexico studied these effects and found that sauerkraut contains high levels of glucosinolates. Glucosinolates have been shown to have anti-cancer activity in laboratory research. “The observed pattern of risk reduction indicates that the breakdown products of glucosinolates in cabbage may affect both the initiation phase of carcinogenesis – by decreasing the amount of DNA damage and cell mutation – and the promotion phase, by blocking the processes that inhibit programmed cell death and stimulate unregulated cell growth,” said Dorothy Rybaczyk-Pathak.
Another study, published in 2012 in the journal Nutrition Cancer, also shows that consuming fermented sauerkraut is connected with a reduction in breast cancers. Their research supported the effect of cabbage and sauerkraut juices on key enzymes involved in estrogen metabolism.
Many health benefits
These are just a few of the things cultured vegetables can do, and I have a lot of new research stories and studies coming out in my new book this fall. It’s so exciting to see the research flooding in about all the things these foods can do. For years, I have watched it bring about so many health benefits but never had the research or data to prove it, and now it’s showing up everywhere!
At the classes I teach, 50 people go home with 50 jars of cultured vegetables that they have made, and with that jar they can make many more batches. This will give them the skill and means to change the microbiome world inside of them. It thrills me to know that I help so many do this.
Here are just a few of my kraut recipes that I consume on a daily basis. I have new classes posted, see the sidebar to the right for more details!