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Kefir On the BBC World Service

BBC World Service interview Deborah

Nourish Kefir on the BBC World Service
Last Thursday was an exciting day for us here at Nourish Kefir.  We were delighted to welcome visitors; Radio presenter Manuela Saragosa and producer Clare Williamson from the BBC World Service radio.

The Food Chain

With listeners from around the globe, programme The Food Chain investigates all the current trends, interests and quirks related to food consumption, production and uses.
Clare and Manuela visited Nourish Kefir to learn more about kefir cultures and to discuss the possible connection between the gut and the brain.  As the UK producers using actual live grains we were able to impart our expertise about real kefir.

Gut Feelings

I shared my own very personal experiences about going from ill health (I suffered for more than 10 years with IBS and crohn’s disease) to well again –  directly as a result of drinking kefir!  It is quite an extraordinary journey.  Some people find it difficult to believe that such a simple thing as kefir –  a fermented milk drink could cure my symptoms of crohn’s disease and IBS.  But it’s true – it did.  I was transformed with my healing, it changed my life.  If you have ever suffered with bowel problems, for a prolonged time as I did, you too would be grateful for the relief that kefir can bring.

The programme is of course an edited version of everything we talked about.  It is a fascinating episode with contributors from Cork University, Ireland and McMaster University, Canada who discuss our gut micro-biome and predict a rise in the use of foods with live bacteria being more widely used to treat mood as a wholistic part of gut function – which all makes sense to me…  You can listen to the full interview about the gut brain connection here
If you have any comments we would like to hear from you…

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Why you should Listen to your Body

Cropped kefir grains

The older I get, the more I learn about the connection between mind and body (and soul).
Today the first call to Nourish Kefir was from a customer who occasionally suffers with stomach upsets and constipation and she wondered if the kefir would help?
We discussed the connection between the occasional burning sensation in her stomach and her anxiety attacks that she agreed happen around the same time as her digestive issues.
When some part of our body is in pain – I believe from my own experiences (and many knowledgeable authors have written about it) that there is a connection between our mind and body, that the body is trying to give us a message that something isn’t working about our lives.  Maybe we are not living true to our values and our needs.  Perhaps we are giving too much to others – who keep taking, and all the while we haven’t realised that our own needs are not being met?  We are running on empty.  We somehow hope or expect the ‘others’ in our lives to notice this about us, and to reciprocate and give us the love/care/attention back.  But for many this just does not happen.  And so we keep on giving/ or even keep ignoring our own needs until one day we don’t have anything left to give.  Then when we are empty – our body starts to hurt!

Later this morning – the second person I spoke to had terrible back pain and was taking co-codamol painkillers to try and keep working through it.  What he really needed to do was go home and rest.  And I’m sure that’s what his back pain was trying to tell him.  In Louise Hay’s book – You can Heal your Life – she writes that back pain is connected to not feeling the support you need.  I bravely said this to him and he immediately agreed.  He explained that he is exhausted from running around doing so much for other people.  They haven’t noticed that he is not superman – and that he also needs to rest and be taken care of – or just given time off to look after himself too!

My journey to kefir was a journey of self love.   Kefir has been a big part of my healing – because I got so ill that I had real physical symptoms – that turned into crohn’s disease as well as IBS – for 10+ years!  If I had not found the kefir I would have continued to have deteriorating gut and physical health.

So my first act of self love was to force myself to drink as much kefir as I could.  I had to take a leap of faith for sure that this extra sour tasting, thick milk was not going to make me worse.  I also had to keep drinking it when my gut was doing it’s clean up act – and elimination was part of that.  Somehow I just had a good feeling about the kefir – and I am so grateful that I embarked on that journey.  The kefir transformed my gut health over a few months – helping to dissolve the pain of the previous 10 years. But that was just one step in taking better care of me.  I am still on that journey.  Maybe we all are to greater or lesser extent?  I’m still having to learn to make more time for myself and to work out what my needs are – to make sure I’m not running on empty and that there is joy in my life.

If our bodies are communicating to us with pain, then I would also suggest they communicate to us with feelings of joy too – when we achieve that state of balance and harmony that makes us love our lives!


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International Women’s Day at Downing Street

Invite to Downing Street on International Women's Day

International Women’s Day on 8th March 2016 was an exciting day for me as I had been invited to a reception at No 10 Downing Street.
Inside the room was buzzing with women from all over the UK, most hoping to get an opportunity to talk to the then Prime Minister David Cameron –  we only just managed a nod hello!
I was expecting the event to be full of business women, but it was quite different.  There were scientists, teachers, nurses, carers, women who started support groups dealing with trauma – slavery, bereavement and other really tough issues. As well as women championing breakfast clubs for children and families with great hardship unable to afford breakfast.

To be celebrating International Women’s day at Downing Street with these wonderful, inspirational women leading extraordinary lives; committed to the greater good was an honour.  It was a bit of a thrill for me (got my photo) and I felt very fortunate to have been invited in the first place.

Having a business is hard work.  But being able to choose to make kefir with life kefir grains (which I believe to be the best quality) is my way of having a business that provides goodness to our customers…

On another level though, we are not just a business, we are our own micro community of people working together, and reaching a larger community of people we hope will benefit from drinking Nourish Kefir.

International Women’s Day