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foods that help digestion . . . part 5

By Robyn Openshaw, MSW | Nov 25, 2008

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl:   What are foods that help digestion? Some raw foodists eat raw meat.   Raw meat and milk have enzymes, so aren’t they good foods?

Answer:   We’ll leave the Oxford/Cornell China Project out of this discussion, which shows that animal protein causes many diseases.   (The primary author of that pivotal study, Dr. Campbell, told me he did not study predigested or fermented milk products, such as kefir or yogurt.)   Raw milk has over 35 enzymes.   If you’re going to use dairy products or milk, raw certainly has those many advantages over pasteurized.   One very old study showed the highest morbidity (death) rate in newborns drinking pasteurized cow milk, a much improved rate for those drinking raw milk, and higher still for those who were fortunate to be breastfed by their mothers.

However, you run many bacterial risks with the way milk and meat will be raised, handled, and transported to you.   Meat in particular is troublesome, and I would not recommend eating it raw, even if you go to all the trouble of finding truly range-fed, organic chickens or beef.   The shockingly lax U.S. standards for poultry allow virtually anything to be legally given labels like “natural” and “range fed.”   We can obtain live enzymes through plant food, much more safely.

That said, I believe much evidence shows kefir or yogurt to be an excellent food with its natural probiotics.   If you can find a source you trust of raw milk, and can obtain kefir grains, you can use the raw milk and predigest the casein proteins with the action of the live kefir grains.   Raw goat milk is preferable to cow milk, with its smaller fat molecule that is not mucous forming like cow milk is.   (Vegans can make kefir with coconut liquid.)

I’m visiting my grampa in Couer d’Alene, Idaho, for the rest of the week and may be offline.   (He is in a home, and I am flying out with my aunt.)   After that I’ll talk about what enzymes supplements to take.   Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted in: Food Industry, Nutrition, Raw Food, Reader Letters, Standard American Diet

8 thoughts on “foods that help digestion . . . part 5”

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  1. Anonymous says:

    okay so I found thai coconuts—how do I preserve them until I get the recipe for red hot smoothies for Christmas? can I just break open and freeze the milk and meat?

    also–maybe they aren’t young thai—they were at the smith’s market place and are just a light tan color on the outside–they rang up and unhusked coconuts—this isn’t the same thing is it? and should I return them because I know you’ve said the normal coconuts are icky-robyn. Let me know– (how long do they last on counter?-could they last the weekend or should I freeze them now?!)

  2. I don’t know where to find the kefir kits from farmers. I found on in the store, will it still work with coconut liquid?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Does freezing fruit or vegetables destroy the enzymes?

    Does drying stuff (like with a dehydrator) does this destroy the


    Your articles on enzymes are very interesting and has sent me

    on research of the subject and am very interested in getting the best enzymes possible from the best sources.

    Wheatgrass juice. I have gone into health food stores over the years and had a shot of wheatgrass, where does it come from, does it have enzymes if it comes in a powder?

  4. I look forward to future studies on these items, so I don’t think “cancer” everytime I see animal protein. LOL.

  5. Anonymous says:

    lala: sounds like you found Thai coconuts. If you want to be sure, do a search for Thai coconut on images.google.com.

    There are YouTube videos on how to open them.

    Freeze the liquid in portion sizes, or in an ice cube tray (then transfer to container to keep from freezer burn).

    I haven’t frozen the meat (but you can), so I don’t know if you need to portion it out ahead of time or not.

    They should last a few days on the shelf, but inspect them pretty well to make sure there’s no mold or discolored spots on the outside. This would be a sign that you should use them up or freeze quickly.

  6. http:// says:

    Jeane, freezing, dehydrating, and storing over time does cause some nutrient loss (including enzymes), but they do preserve the vast majority, too. Freezing and dehydrating are the best options. And yes, dried powdered greens do retain enzymes as long as they are dried below 116 degrees (like the VitaMineral Green I promote here on the site, dried below 100).

    Lala, if they’re unhusked and labelled as Thai, you probably did buy the right thing–I did a YouTube video with my son on how we get them open.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I’ve found numerous retailers selling kefir starter online but I was wondering which one(s) you recommend? I believe I read somewhere that you are still using kefir passed down from your grandmother. The kefir I see online says it can only be reused about 7 times so I was wondering what the difference was.

  8. http:// says:

    I don’t know about kefir starts online, sorry. I did get mine from my mom, who got it from a friend, who traces it back to Australia . . . and I’ve been using mine for years, and giving the extra to people when I have it. Point it, true kefir grains have no shelf life and keep proliferating. Some dried starter doesn’t propagate and last indefinitely like that, I’m sure.

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