I don't know about you, but I have been conditioned to think of chocolate and red roses when February 14th - the day of the heart(s) -draws near. Good or bad, that is the where my little psyche goes. It doesn't mean that I feel better or worse if I have these things or not, but I'm just saying that those are what come to mind around this celebrated 'heart' day.
But today I am thinking about actually celebrating the heart in a literal sense. Did you know that this magnificent organ is the first one to be created in the womb and continues as the most important influencing mechanism in the body throughout our lifetime until its last heartbeat?
I am in love with all the different ways that one can use vegetables in our diet. In case you don't know me well, I like nothing more than experimenting with different foods and ways of eating them. Sometimes it's cause I'm bored (yawn) or other times, it's because I have a friend or family member that has special food requirements. God forbid (and I mean it) that someone has to feel restricted or hungry when they are eating at my home! The Italian in me wants to make sure that EVERYBODY is satisfied and fed well.
Okay, I have to come clean - sometimes a girl just needs a bit of chocolate - right? And, after all, chocolate come from cacoa beans, which are actually fermented in order to bring out the chocolate flavor we all know and love. Before fermentation cacao beans have a very bitter taste and without fermentation, the rich chocolate flavor wouldn't exist.
And of course, this is not the first time that I have talked about the merits of fermented foods. If in doubt, you can refer to my previous blogs on kombucha and beet kvass. In short, the process of fermentation provides us with foods that are rich with natural probiotics which are extremely beneficial to feeding our gut bacteria and helping aid the distress of indigestion, bloating, and supporting overall health, vitality, immunity and happiness in the long run!