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Cultivate Simple 32: It’s The Little Things

June 3rd, 2013

Small changes you can make to live a healthier life:

  • First off, don’t get too crazy!
  • Don’t believe everything you read, adopting the latest and greatest “health” craze isn’t your best option.
  • Incorporate herbs and spices into your diet whenever you can – SPICE IT UP!
  • Add more whole vegetables into your diet, particularly for breakfast.
  • Add fermented and or cultured food to every meal.
  • Add gelatin to your diet as often as possible.
  • Swap out tea and herbal tea for water when you can.


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Any healthy living tips you’d like to share?

17 Comments to “Cultivate Simple 32: It’s The Little Things”
  1. Jennifer Fisk on June 3, 2013 at 6:52 am

    In addition to my garden and raising meat chickens, turkeys, and rabbits, I only purchase ME grass raised beef and pastured pork. I’m trying to be very diligent about avoiding GMO foods. My first choice in food purchases is organic. If my selection isn’t available in organic, I read the label. I avoid HFCS and nasty preservatives. I haven’t consumed soda for years but recently found Polar flavored seltzer water as a treat. I think it’s ok. I’d say plan your food consumption like your life depends on it because in reality it does.

    Reply to Jennifer Fisk's comment

    • Susy on June 3, 2013 at 8:49 am

      We just purchased the iSi Soda Siphon to add some fizziness to fruit juices and herbal teas to make them a little more interesting. I’m also interested in making tonics for digestive health.

      I completely agree, eat as if your life depends on it – you’re right – it really does!

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • amy on June 3, 2013 at 11:43 am

        Susy~I would recommend beet kvass…..using your own homegrown beets and whey….as a tonic.

        to amy's comment

      • Susy on June 6, 2013 at 8:03 am

        I’ve heard of Kvaas, but have never had it. So many fermented things, so little time!

        to Susy's comment

  2. Misti on June 3, 2013 at 1:16 pm

    I can’t believe y’all haven’t gotten into kombucha yet! I’ve been meaning either to buy my own scoby or to start mine from a store bought bottle, but I keep drinking all of my store bought bottles!

    Reply to Misti's comment

    • Susy on June 6, 2013 at 8:06 am

      Yes, Dailon makes it. There are only so many fermented things I can drink in a day, kombucha just hasn’t made it through the rotation yet.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  3. amy on June 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Susy and Brian~you can use the water kefir grains and after they ferment remove your grains and add organic apple juice and then let it ferment a bit more and it taste like hard apple cider:)) This is the only way my husband will drink it! I like the milk kefir but I usually use it mixed with fruits and orange juice. You can also use it with spinach, avocado, blueberries and honey. Delicious! I do use the kombucha and got my scoby from Cultures for Health…..Only one other thing would I recommend and that is dry brushing your skin each day….This is a old health tradition and is great for improving circulation.

    I think it is way too easy to get involved with so many of these “healthy options” that we read and hear about these days….so much so that it can become overwhelming…so I choose carefully…Also.. thankyou for the warnings…so many believe everything they read(I have fallen prey to this one…Especially if you have significant health problem and are looking for immediate relief)….research is a must….and always start out with the least amount of something first in regard to supplements and let your body adjust…before upping your intake.

    Thank you so very much for this podcast. I picked up so so much I can think about and perhaps employ in my diet….such as the fish oils and miso! Tropical Traditions has a wonderful cookbook/info book that I am sure your aware of but the readers may not be in that it provides so many ways to incorporate coconut oil into your diet and health regimes.

    You guys are the greatest!

    Reply to amy's comment

  4. Mich on June 3, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    You could eat ‘marmite’ to keep the biting bugs at bay….full of bug off vitamins :P Can you get it in the US?
    Was amazed at you feeding gizzards to your pigs ( Brian you were lucky pig bites can be grim) here in the UK we are not allowed to feed any meat, kitchen scraps to our porkers…

    Reply to Mich's comment

    • Susy on June 3, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      Yes, some places recommend not feeding pigs meat here in the US as well. It’s a lot like raw milk being “dangerous” and the idea that you shouldn’t feed your pets raw meat. Most of these recommendations come from problems in the commercial agricultural setting where diseased animals were being fed to livestock. We’re striving to feed our pigs like we do most of our animals in a way that’s as close to their natural diet as we can. Pigs are omnivore’s like humans and thus would eat eggs and small game/birds if they could. I do want to note that we only feed our pigs meat that we’d eat ourselves, no diseased animals or anything we wouldn’t consume ourselves. Pig digestion is a lot like human digestion so they can pass along disease, though if you rear your pigs in healthy conditions the risks are extremely low. I’ve also been doing lots of research that feeding pigs raw milk aids in their digestion and amazingly prevent parasite and disease issues in pigs.

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • Mich on June 4, 2013 at 5:32 am

        Oh I agree with you Suzy, but due to few previous disease outbreak from swill issues it is now illegal to feed such raw food to pigs.
        But I could give them feed mixed with fresh milk off the cow!

        to Mich's comment

      • Susy on June 6, 2013 at 8:02 am

        Yes, raw milk is a perfect food for pigs, especially if they’re on pasture. It is the perfect balance for all the greenery. The piggies also get eggs every day as well.

        I couldn’t sell this pork to anyone, but since it’s just for us I’ll feed it as close to their natural diet as possible.

        to Susy's comment

  5. Adriana on June 3, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    Loved this week’s show especially because it’s so much like our lifestyle. I started making kombucha a few months ago. I would be interested in learning how to make water kefir. I’ve made milk kefir in the past and used it in smoothies or with a touch of maple syrup. I stopped making it because I also make yogurt and have a small kitchen so I was running out of cool, dark places to keep all my cultures going… I’ve only used Knox gelatin because that’s what I can get at my local natural food store. I never thought to look for a better alternative.
    I totally agree with not believing everything you read. There is so much information and misinformation out there it’s overwhelming to sift through it. I’m going to stop right here, I could go on and on about diet fads…

    Reply to Adriana's comment

  6. Krista on June 5, 2013 at 1:24 am

    Hmm, where to start. So much to say!

    While I’m typing this, you discuss kefir. Funny. My husband finds it gross, but I love it, I grew up with the commercial stuff, so that has probably something to do with. It’s especially good with smashed/pureed strawberries, you pretty much can’t taste the kefir! (But maybe I’m being biased here.)

    I agree about the herbs and not adding enough. I add the required amount, but afterwards when I eat it, it’s like, it’s not there! I stopped added vanilla extract to baked things because I couldn’t tell difference in the end product. Or I just had crappy quality vanilla. But the real thing costs…

    Re mushroooms. I hate them. I think it’s a texture issue, so chopping them up really small could be clever.

    Sometimes I feel bad that I don’t live in the States. All the food bloggers live there and speak of wonderful products and shop that are not local to me. I wish I knew of an Australian made pasture-fed gelatin. And massive herb shops.

    Little things that I do? I eat raw liver every morning in order to fix my tooth sensitivity and cavities. I’ve also gotten into fermenting my oats for breakfast. An acquired taste. But now when I just do the normal soaking, I find it too bland.
    And while I’m at breakfast, I find that scrambled eggs and toast don’t keep me as full as a bowlful of oats. Maybe I do need to add a slice of bacon and the extra half egg (I cook three eggs for two people), but still. I’m going to try adding mushrooms next.

    I also filter my water, though I still find it doesn’t taste as good as the water back home where we have our own well.

    Reply to Krista's comment

    • amy on June 6, 2013 at 10:11 am

      Krista~I have to ask how does the raw liver work towards helping with cavities and tooth sensitivity? I am very curious.

      Reply to amy's comment

  7. Krista on June 11, 2013 at 4:12 am

    Ah, apparently it’s just waiting moderation, just a small cookie issue on my part. Suzy, you can delete my last comment (and this one, for that matter :) )

    Reply to Krista's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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