Friday, 29 December 2017

What To Do With Beer: It's Too Good To Drink It!

We've been finding a lot of beer lately, not only in the dumpsters but also at the bottom of our food supply - completely forgotten because nobody drinks it. I don't drink alcoholic beverages of any kind (I never liked them), so what to do with it then? Well, luckily none of it has to go to waste, and here is (in my opinion) the best way to use beer.

First, you separate the alcohol from the beer, with a homemade "still". You can easily make one yourself; check here for ideas. The easiest is the solar still! The boiling point of alcohol is around 78C, so if you can maintain the temperature of your still around 80C, that is the best way to separate it. Now you have liquid that has a high percentage of alcohol, plus the beer without alcohol. You may need a lot of bottles to get enough alcohol out of it, or you can grow more by adding water, sugar and yeast and then distilling it again later.

Now you can use the alcohol to make (medicinal) tinctures; just use your favorite dried herbs and let them soak in the alcohol (it's best if the purity of the alcohol is 40% (80 proof) or higher) for at least 6 weeks up to 6 months. And then it's ready! You can add a few drops in your drink as vitamin/mineral supplement or as (preventative) medicine. Of course you need to make sure you know what the herbs do. You can find out more about herbal medicine with this book, and there are many others available online for free.

Then what to do with the rest of the beer? You use it to wash your hair, of course :) Beer without alcohol has a very sweet and lovely smell, and it nurtures your hair (with alcohol it will make it dry, but without it you just get all the benefits from the B-vitamins). You don't even need to wash it out. It gives your hair shine and volume, and people will probably compliment you on your hair immediately.

That's it! The best way to use beer :)

Tinctures and "shampoo"!

The Benefits of Fasting

What better time to fast than right after Christmas? Or even DURING Christmas for the warriors among us! :)

There are so many benefits to fasting, and in many cultures and traditions it is a recurring part of life, and for good reason. I try to fast at least once a year for a couple of days, although lately I have been fasting more regularly due to the often large amounts of food I get exposed to, which are not always the most healthy. That is in fact the only downside of dumpster diving: it comes with lots of temptations, and it requires high levels of self-control and discipline to not get carried away at least once in a while.

There are many different types of fasting, but my favorite routine goes something like this:
I drink a cup of warm (not hot - for the sake of vitamins) herbal tea twice a day (morning and evening), which I supplement with home-made multivitamin tinctures, I drink fruit juices during the day (freshly made or bottled), and (optional) I eat some fruit and/or light vegetables in the evening. That's it! I usually start by including the fruit and veg in the evening and after a day or two I feel ready to skip that as well.

The benefits of fasting are numerous: You feel more energetic, it improves blood circulation, you feel (and are) more productive and you cleanse your body and mind on the deepest possible level. Combine it with meditation, some light daily stretching or yoga and breathing exercises, and it will be the best thing you can do for your health.

If you fast this way, you can probably keep it going for a long time (even a couple of months if you feel that you need to), but of course always listen to your body. Every body is different. And ALWAYS supplement with natural vitamins and minerals, preferably in liquid form (not the usual cheap supplements from the store). Best to make your own so that you know what's in it! And when you do feel like eating again, make sure it is something healthy and build up again slowly.

 Here's to a healthy 2018 for everyone! :)

Sunday, 17 December 2017

How to Eat Egg Shells

If you enjoy dumpster diving like me, then sooner or later you are probably going to find a lot of eggs. Cartons of eggs can get thrown out in large quantities when the date expires (but usually they remain edible for weeks or even months after that), or every now and then you may find one or two cartons that have a broken egg, or a missing egg. Usually most of the other eggs are still fine. In the latter case, the eggs may even still be quite fresh, or even superfresh: they may have gotten damaged while they were being put on the shelf. Make sure to check the eggs just before consuming them by submerging them in cold water. If they remain under water, they are still fine. If they start to float, then don't eat them anymore.

Anyway, if you and your friends/family eat a lot of eggs, you will also have a lot of egg shells. Most people throw these away, but I recently discovered they have great nutritional value (it consists of about 95% calcium carbonate). So I decided to dedicate a blog post about it.

How to eat egg shells

1. Boil and peel eggs, or make an omelette and save the shells. It is probably best not to wait too long before going on to step 2.
2. Boil the egg shells for 6-10 minutes to remove all bacteria.
3. Let the egg shells dry overnight on a baking sheet.
4. Put the egg shells in the oven on 100-120 C (or 200-250 Fahrenheit) for about 10 mins to make sure they are dry and clean.
5. Put them in your favorite coffee grinder / mortar until you have egg shell powder.
6. Store in glass container.
7. Enjoy half a teaspoon twice a day in your drinks or meals.

Tip 1: Let half a teaspoon of egg shell powder soak in the juice of half a lemon for 6 hours to lose the grainy texture.
Tip 2: It is best to take this 'supplement' with an equal or slightly higher dose of magnesium, because calcium and magnesium work together. Half a teaspoon of calcium is equal to approximately 400 mgs calcium. Add in D3 and K2 for additional benefits!
Tip 3: You can also use the powder in your garden to enrich the soil, or you can sprinkle crushed shells around plants to protect them from slugs and snails. Or feed them to your chickens, or to birds in spring.

#Recycling matters
#Zero waste lifestyle