Lets get one thing straight here and now… Dirt is good for us !!
So it’s true to say that I spend quite a bit of time thinking about how to eat more dirt. Mad though it may sound dirt really is good for us. All those little bugs hopping around in the soil actually do use a favour strengthening our immune systems to make us better able to beat the bad bugs naturally, rather than always relying on antibiotics.
If you are interested in a bit of science read on (if not scroll on down a bit !!). Soil-based organisms (SBO’s) help plants grow, as, without their protection the healthy plants become malnourished and susceptible to disease. Just as plants grow best in healthy soil full of microorganisms we humans need these organisms to live a healthy life too. More than 800 studies out there in scientific literature reference this and in particular point out that SBO’s can improve an array of conditions:-
- Irritable bowl syndrome.
- Ulcerative colitis.
- Nutrient deficiencies.
- Autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
- Bacterial, fungal and viral infections.
We know that SBO’s nourish cells in the colon and liver and create B vitamins, Vitamin K2, antioxidants and enzymes. SBO’s can crowd out harmful pathogens ie. candida, fungi and parasites, I could go on but you get my drift.
The food production chain does everything in its power to remove dirt for us consumers as we expect to buy our fruit and veg looking shiny, clean and uniform in size. People who ate veg out of their gardens in the 1930’s, 1950’s etc.. did not, generally speaking, die from it infact they had way stronger immune system than us.
Best ways to eat more dirt:-
- Buy organic veg or better still dig them up from your garden and just give them a rinse before cooking, rather than scrubbing them to within an inch of their lives.
- Eat probiotic foods like kefir, yoghurt and sauerkraut. One of the reasons many people today are lactose intolerant is that pasteurisation kills off the beneficial probiotics and enzymes but when someone with lactose intolerance consumes a raw or fermented dairy product, which are also higher in probiotics and/or enzymes their symptoms can diminish.
- Consume raw honey and bee pollen. The gradual and natural immunisation we get from the microbes in our local honey and pollen take up residence in our guts and help our immune systems to adjust to the local environment. Honey also provides an excellent source of prebiotics to nourish the gut bugs.
So don’t be afraid to hoik those beets and carrots out of the ground or grab a bunch when you are passing the farmers market like I did this weekend, give them a rinse and then into the pan or roasting tin they go – and you can put that peeler away too, if the veg are organic then that is good soil on their skin (see, that’s saved you five minutes ….). I know I know I have to have a “Health and safety” moment and point out that eating handfuls of dirt may not be a good thing but use your discretion ladies and gents.
At the end of the day that glorious mud (which is free I might add) is doing us a service and I for one am tucking in to my carrots this Sunday lunchtime.
P.S. You could always buy your veg loose at the supermarket as they are cheeper because they have a bit of mud on, yay !!