What’s On My Fermented Foods Bookshelf

People ask me all the time “Summer, what are your favorite books and resources for fermentation, microbiology, and gut health?”

Today, I’ve picked my top 7 favorite books that I turn to on a regular basis. I’ll be honest, I’m a textbook junkie. I love reading science books that are backed with research. This helps me gain more confidence in my work with clients and helps me teach more effectively.

Sometimes I don’t understand everything I read in the books, but the more I read the more I put all the pieces together. I encourage you to pick out the books from this list that appeal to you and read them all the way through. Don’t get stuck if you don’t understand something – just keep reading and you’ll gather sweet gems along the way!

Today, I’ve picked my top 7 favorite books that I turn to on a regular basis. I’ll be honest, I’m a textbook junkie. I love reading science books that are backed with research. This helps me gain more confidence in my work with clients and helps me teach more effectively.

Sometimes I don’t understand everything I read in the books, but the more I read the more I put all the pieces together. I encourage you to pick out the books from this list that appeal to you and read them all the way through. Don’t get stuck if you don’t understand something— just keep reading and you’ll gather sweet gems along the way!


    Gut Ecology edited by Alisa L Hart et al.



This is one of those books that is hard to read if you’re not familiar with scientific academic papers and microbiological procedures for testing and culturing. But if you’re willing to get over ‘feeling stupid’ and reading quickly through this text, you will find gems that will completely change the way your view gut ecology. I love the opening line, “Lifelong cross-talk occurs between the host and the intestinal flora, and the outcome of this can determine whether health is maintained or disease intervenes.” When I hear probiotic companies spouting the miraculous benefits of their gut healing probiotic formulas that contain 8-20 strains of bacteria (in only 2 different genera) I always think back to this line in the book, “The microbial flora of the GI tract forms an extremely complex ecosystem. There are at least 17 families of bacteria yielding at least 50 different genera. There are then countless species, subspecies and biotypes, with at least 400-500 bacterial species thought to be present in the faecal flora of a single person. This complexity imposes limitations on attempts to fully delineate the flora and changes in its composition.” And while that conclusion might overwhelm our favorite doctors, I find relief and turn back to the wisdom of my ancestors and the studies compiled from The American Gut Project, which leads me to go back to food as medicine. The food feeds the environment that these organisms inhabit. Give them good food and they will give you good nutrition, immunity, and a positive response to stress.



   Honor Thy Symbionts by Jeff D. Leach


This is a great easy read filled with short essays on how probiotics and humans live together. You will gain new insights on this intricate relationship and start to understand the magnitude at which our health is determined by them!


    Fermented Vegetables by Kirsten K Shockey and Christopher Shockey


This is my go-to resource for lacto-fermenting anything from basil to beets. This book has tips to keep your highly experimental (squash kraut, anyone?) ferments from getting mushy, moldy, or slimy. Also, I interviewed Kirsten back on the Guts & Glory Blogcast if you want to hear her journey and tips firsthand!


   Bacteriology of Humans: An Ecological Perspective by Michael Wilson


Another science-heavy text, my favorite chapter “Indigenous microbiota” has the most flags. This is the book where I learned that mucus is a major source of nutrients in the respiratory, genital, and urinary tracts – can you say fascinating?!!! A favorite quote that confirms my desire to focus more on feeding bacteria through proper nutrition and good health (over single and double genus probiotic supplementation), “In order for an organism to become a member of the indigenous microbiota of a body site, the environment of that site must be able to satisfy its nutritional and physiochemical requirements.” This is why some people can take probiotics all day long and not see the effects. Their ecosystem internally is not set up to support those bacteria to stay and grow inside and they pass right through.


    Microbiology and Technology of Fermented Foods by Robert Hutkins


While many food science programs offer courses in the microbiology and processing of fermented foods, no recently published texts exist that fully address the subject. Food fermentation professionals and researchers also have lacked a single book that covers the latest advances in biotechnology, bioprocessing, and microbial genetics, physiology, and taxonomy. This book is a must-read for those wanting to start their own fermented foods production company.

In Microbiology and Technology of Fermented Foods, Robert Hutkins has written the first text on food fermentation microbiology in a generation. This authoritative volume also serves as a comprehensive and contemporary reference book. A brief history and evolution of microbiology and fermented foods, an overview of microorganisms involved in food fermentations, and their physiological and metabolic properties provide a foundation for the reader. How microorganisms are used to produce fermented foods and the development of a modern starter culture industry are also described.



   Missing Microbes by Martin J. Blaser, MD



This is an easy-to-read book that compiles and synthesizes all the pertinent information you need to become a micro biome masters student. He cites the literature (relevant scientific studies) that confirm the correlation between obesity, asthma, allergies, diabetes, and even certain forms of cancer with the rise in antibiotics and the subsequent destruction to the gut inhabitants. A must-read for anyone suffering from or working with people who have gut-based health issues. He offers many solutions from a doctor’s perspective, as well.



   The Big Book of Kombucha by Hannah Crum and Alex LaGory of Kombucha Kamp


I haven’t read this, yet, because it just showed up at my house yesterday! But I have talked with Hannah at length for years about this project and have been waiting with bated breath for this bad baby mama (kombucha joke, get it?) to hit the shelves. She may have the most comprehensive history of Kombucha in a book. In case you’re familiar with Kombucha, you’ll know that the exact history is hotly debated – she shares her best theory based off travel and extensive research. She also goes into major depth about sweeteners, water quality, and many other details that makes the book the new go-to encyclopedia for Kombucha. I interviewed Hannah on the Gut Rebuilding Experts Telesummit a few years ago. It was one of my favorite interviews. You can find it here.

This is only a small sampling of the collection of fermentation, gut healing, and microbiology texts that I have on my bookshelf, but I picked some of the big hitters. I hope you enjoy. Please let me know below in the comments what your favorite books on these subjects are (even if it one of the ones I already mentioned).


Comment below and let me know what are your favorite books on fermented foods

My Favorite Fermented Food Online Resources, Articles & Podcasts

Information about fermentation and microbiology has exploded on the Internet in recent years— I’m always scouring for the most up-to-date facts on the benefits of fermented foods.

Check out the list I’ve compiled to find a combination of NPR articles (check out what the Buddhist nuns in Korea have to say about fermented foods!), a Radiolab podcast on gut health, and the Microbiome Medicine Summit which includes dozens of leading health experts sharing about all aspects of healing with fermented foods.

This information is perfect if you want to be able to articulate why fermented foods are so important to your family members, health care practitioners, or, if you’re a wellness practitioner yourself, to your clients.

Learn about:

The surprising back-and-forth between our gut and our brain.
The cloud of microbes that follow you everywhere
The Invisible Universe That Lives On Us — And In Us
Morocco’s Funky Fermented Butter
And more….You could spend a few minutes or many happy hours delving into these fun facts and important science findings.

What I love about these resources is that the information is so varied—you’ll find everything from the science to practical step-by-step instructions, such as Chris Kresser’s link on How to Restore Healthy Gut Flora Over the Long-Term.

Quick list of my 11 favorites resources!

‘Fermentation': When Food Goes Bad But Stays Good

Buddhist Diet For A Clear Mind: Nuns Preserve Art Of Korean Temple Food

The Microbiome Medicine Summit

Smen Is Morocco’s Funky Fermented Butter That Lasts For Years

Auto-Brewery Syndrome: Apparently, You Can Make Beer In Your Gut

Why You Shouldn’t Wrinkle Your Nose At Fermentation

Guts by Radiolab

“This hour, we dive into the messy mystery in the middle of us. What’s going on down there? And what can the rumblings deep in our bellies tell us about ourselves? We stick our hand in a cow stomach, get a window into our core (thanks to a hunter who became a walking science experiment in the 1800s), and listen in on the surprising back-and-forth between our gut and our brain. And we talk to a man who kind of went out of his mind when a medical procedure left him (for a little while) gutless.”

Wherever You Go, Your Personal Cloud Of Microbes Follows

Exploring The Invisible Universe That Lives On Us — And In Us

Revolution Health Radio (RHR): How to Restore Healthy Gut Flora Over the Long-Term

A great gut podcast

Hope you enjoy this smattering of info! You can bookmark this page so you can have these articles to refer back to whenever you need!

Comment below and let me know—What are your favorite fermented food resources on the web?

Spice up your microbiome

Top spices for gut health

Lunchtime! I’m making Indian food.

Indian food is one of the best microbiome-bolstering diets on the planet.

The spices found in Indian food combat dysbiosis, any kind of gut impairment, and digestive issues— they reduce gas, help with peristalsis, eliminate indigestion and heartburn, all while they support good bacteria.

These herbs also assist in breaking things down—making it easier to get your minerals and your vitamins, and absorb the things that you need for your body to stay in a state of healing.

Find out which of these herbs kill bad bacteria, empathogenic bacteria, and help your digestion work at the same time.

Today’s quickie Guts & Glory covers my top three favorite herbs that I work with for an optimum biome. And I’ll talk about some extra tips to get the most out of your healthy meals—like how long to cook things and the best preparation methods to get the most nutrients from your Indian feast.

Learn how to create a really hospitable environment for probiotics to thrive in your body so that you can be as healthy as possible, using food. Because hey! You’ve got to eat. Might as well make it yummy and good for you!

Try these spices this week and report back here to let me know how it went!

Comment below and let me know…



Hello everyone. Welcome, I’m Summer Bock. This is is Guts & Glory. Today I want to chat for a minute about the fact that I’m reheating Indian food and it inspired me. I’m about to eat lunch and I realized that I think that Indian food is one of the best microbiome-bolstering diets on the planet.


Two reasons. One, things are cooked at a slow, low temperature. The vitamins and the minerals are able to be extracted from the food. For people who are suffering from dysbiosis or any kind of gut impairment, digestive issues, when you can actually aid the digestion and help assist breaking things down, it’s easier to get your minerals and your vitamins and absorb the things that you need for your body to stay in a state of healing.

That’s one reason. The second reason, and the one that I’m going to share with you today, a little bit more in detail about, is the herbs. Oh my gosh. Indian food has the most amazing herbs that help support good bacteria. Partially, because these herbs kill bad bacteria, empathogenic bacteria, and they help your digestion work at the same time. You create a really hospitable environment for probiotics to thrive in your body so that you can be as healthy as possible.

My top three favorite herbs that I work with, and that I cook with, and that I think are great for the microbiome are coriander. Coriander is one of my absolute favorites, especially when you buy the whole seeds and you grind it up fresh before using it. Coriander helps to reduce gas. It helps with peristalsis. It helps you to eliminate indigestion and heartburn and things like that. It does help kill off bad organisms, so I think coriander is one of my absolute favorites to add to food.

Ginger, ginger is another one. Ginger is a little bit spicy, it’s warming, but it also is going to help with circulation. It helps with nausea, indigestion, gas, burping, anything like that. Ginger is a great one to add to your food to help support the right environment, help you digest your food better so that those happy probiotics can live there.

Third favorite, fennel. Oh my gosh, I love me some fennel. Fennel is on the sweeter side. It tastes a little bit like licorice, but in traditional Indian meals you eat fennel seeds after the meal to help aid digestion. Again, this helps with gas, this helps with peristalsis, which means that the food moves through better, and with all the ones I also mentioned … Diarrhea is almost eliminated in situations like this.

Eating these really amazing herbs like fennel, and ginger, and coriander is going to help support the good bugs to live in your gut. If you don’t want to make it yourself, go get some Indian food. You’ll probably get some of those spices in there along with a bunch of other amazing spices that have similar qualities.

If you want to experiment at home, grind them up, add them to your food, cook it at slow, low temps, and start to feel the effects of a happy, healthy belly. All right, everyone. This is Summer Bock signing out.

Pantry Overhaul Update

A few months back JJ Virgin and I went through my pantry. It was a really popular topic—everyone wanted to know what one of the top health experts and New York Times bestselling author had to say!

I showed her how disorganized things were and she gave me some advice about how to set it up. I just want to show you the progress that I’ve made—from my own supplement mess and to how it’s been going with my boyfriend and the Bisquick problem

Come along on this quick little tour of what’s in my cupboards—you’ll get to see how I’ve organized it in a way that make WAY more sense, and you’ll also get a peek at some of my current favorite snacks, like the paleo wraps I can’t live without and what’s in my secret snacktime stash!

You’ll also see what I always keep on hand for a healthy alternative.

And the next step for getting my boyfriend on board with the overhaul…will it work?

What do you need to organize or throw away that is lurking in your pantry?
Has there been one organizational thing that has totally transformed your kitchen?
Share your best kitchen tips here so we can all geek out!

Comment below and let me know…

Hello, everyone. I’m Summer Bock. This is Guts and Glory.

After JJ Virgin and I went through my pantry and discovered some amazing snacks that are things I would never eat, I showed her how disorganized things were and she gave me some advice about how to kind of set it up. I just want to show you the progress that I’ve made. Here we go. I’m pretty happy actually, so look at that. I created a little jar system and I’m using … Oh, there we go. I’m using all of these jars. Right when we walk in the pantry, this is what I see. I’ve got all my cookbooks that I like, my little maple syrup stash, and my little cacao stash for the snack time.

I have more packaged stuff that, honestly, I don’t use very often. This is little crackers and things like that. I kind of use these when I’m traveling. I have some flour that I use from time to time, some pasta, but I don’t use the stuff on this shelf very much. I have some sardines that I eat on salads when we’re out of stuff.

Then down on the bottom shelf here I have my supplements that are just kind of a crazy mess. This is cool. I have this bin here with these little paleo turmeric wraps that I freaking love. They’re so good. I use that instead of bread and I make sandwiches with it. Looks like here’s some more sprouted crackers. I do like these from time to time. I feel like I’ve done a really good job. I’m pleased. You go on down. There’s sort of a mixture here, but here’s kind of the other situation.

I will say the update is that the boyfriend hasn’t really changed very much of his eating habits at all.
A little bit, he’s been buying some really good meat and he is more aware… I don’t know quite how to explain it. There has been some shift, it’s just not … It’s not easy to see it really in a certain way. I don’t know how to explain it.

There is still some … You know, we still have our crazy Bisquick situation next to the liquor and there’s still these peanut butter crackers, but you know what? He doesn’t eat this stuff very often, so I’m still really trying to get to the place where he and I can go through here and actually have a bit of a pantry clean out where we can get rid of some of the stuff that he doesn’t touch, that’s too old, that doesn’t really need to be cluttering up this space anymore. That would be my ideal situation. I have to say, this shirt translates much better in person than it does on video. I love this shirt, but, man, it looks like I’m wearing a giant orange balloon, folks. Well, there you have it. There’s the update. I hope you enjoy.

Small Dog Mentality

“Who am I to teach?”

When I was starting out as a health coach, it was just one of those things I heard in my head every single turn.

I would wake up in the morning, I’d hear it.
I’d go to bed, I’d hear it.
I would sit down at the computer, yup, I would hear it.

A lot of times it was debilitating, putting me in a state of fear and paralysis, which got me nowhere.

Then I’d start thinking about how someone else, some big time health genius billionaire already said it… I call this the “small dog mentality” where you feel like you should just give up and let the big dogs do it.

Well, every big dog started out tiny with paws that were too big and clunky…

When I began coaching, I needed clients. I learned that teaching is a surefire way to get clients because it gets you in front of people who want the information you have, people who you can help.

I knew I had the knowledge part down, so the issue was that I just needed experience standing in front of people. But how was I supposed to get experience if the very thought of teaching sent me quaking in my cowboy boots?

Maybe you’ve experienced this too? On today’s Guts & Glory podcast I’m offering five tips to help you get out of that “small dog mentality” that’s keeping you back in your career.

Join me as I share:

  • How to make talking about what you love fun instead of something that gives you hives
  • Quick breathing exercises you can do (including a fun little gadget that helps you relax)
  • The life changing TEDTalk on retraining your nervous system
  • Plus one of the biggest secrets for those working or starting an online practice

This confidence-boosting advice has worked for me in all kinds of situations. I’ve used these tips to help me rev up for an online telesummit, webinars, or even talks in front of hundreds.

Comment below and let me know what would be different about your life if you were to completely overcome “Small Dog Mentality”? Where would you be in 2 years if your thoughts were no longer plagued with small dog mentality? Share and inspire someone — maybe even yourself!

Hello everyone, I’m Summer Bock, welcome to Guts & Glory. I want to answer a question that we have today from Robbie.

Robbie says, “How to get over the ‘who am I to teach’ or ‘I don’t know enough’ mindset? I know I have a ton of knowledge and experience but the little voices tell me to let the ‘big dogs’ do it.”

Oh gosh, Robbie, thank you for this question, this is fantastic. I’m remembering back to a time where I heard this on a regular basis in my own head, the little voices telling you that other people are better at teaching this, that maybe somebody else should be in charge of this.

It was just one of those things where I heard this every single turn. I would wake up in the morning, I’d hear it, I’d go to bed I’d hear it. I would sit down at the computer I would hear it. A lot of times it really was debilitating, it would put me in a state of paralysis in terms of fear. I just want you to know I really get it, and I still hear these voices today, they’re there, it comes up. It sounds different, it’s not at loud and I don’t believe them as much anymore I guess is the biggest difference, and some of them have stopped talking altogether, so it is different.

Here’s my advice for you: I want you to focus on what you love about what you’re teaching. What are you enjoying? Because when you make it fun for yourself and you’re doing this for you, I know that sounds odd and it sounds sort of counter intuitive and slightly selfish, but when you do it for you where you’re having fun, you’re on your game. That’s when you’re teaching from your highest intention and your highest potential and really the highest, strongest, most powerful version of yourself when you’re having fun. I want you to focus on teaching from that place. Think about how would you set up a class that just put you in your strongest, brightest light. What would that class look like? That’s what I want you to start to teach from.

Then there’s a couple tips I also have, which is you want to do breathing exercises, they’re very important. Especially you can use HeartMath, it’s that little doohickey that you clip to your ear and practice breathing and getting your mind in a state of high coherence they call it. Then there’s that TED Talk, that really good TED Talk that’s all about doing the power poses where you do this little pose for a while and then you hands on the hips, two minutes this way, two minutes this way. You just spend a little bit of time doing some of those activities before you do each of your classes. That will make a big difference because it will retrain your nervous system to be relaxed.

All you need is experience. I shook my way through many of my first classes. I was a terrible teacher at first, and now I just love it. I love conveying information and I also love watching people get it and have those ah-ha moments. That’s the most powerful experience for me. I also love being a student as well, so it’s really fun being a student when there’s awesome teachers around. That’s what I know, that’s my sweet spot. In terms of doing this, you just have to do it. Experience, experience. I mean these voices can be yelling at you.

What you need to do is you need to book the talks, you need to book the classes, you need to get them on the calendar and you need to get them on the calendar in a way where you can’t back out. If you’re really nervous and you need to do this in front of friends and family first, book a regular weekly series at your house until you’ve practiced enough times, because practice, practice, practice. You just got to get the nervousness out of your system and you have to learn how to talk, you have to learn how to teach in a way that’s effective and lights people up as they’re listening to you. The way you do that is by being in front of other people and teaching.

For those of you who are practicing online and trying to figure out how to do that transition or starting online, one of the biggest secrets in terms of being good at that is still practicing teaching in front of real people because you need to see the reactions, you need to feel that connection. You need to know that what you’re saying makes sense and is landing for people, and the only way you can know that is by being in a group of people and watching their eyes light up and watching whether they start texting on their phone if they’re getting bored, or if they’re totally engaged the whole time. That’s how you know.

Alright, everyone, go text on your phone, go update yourself on your Facebook, go look at your emails now. Alright, but for you Robbie, I hope that you take this information seriously, I hope that … I hope this makes sense. All I’m really asking you to do is just teach as much as you possibly can. Yeah, you might be a small dog for a while, there might still be big dogs and you might be a small dog. You don’t need to leave it to the big dogs, it’s just that over time you’ll become a big dog once you’ve practiced enough times. That’s just how it works. I want you to be able to master this stuff and mastering something just takes consistent time, consistent effort, consistent doing; and you’re doing that. I know you are.

I hope that helps everyone who’s watching this. The Showcase Club is actually a really good resource for you if this is something that interests you at theshowcaseclub.com.

We have a trial for those of you who haven’t tried it, but that is a great place where we talk about more questions like this and give resources and support for people who want to be better at what they do as an online wellness practitioner or virtual healer. Alright everybody, this is Summer Bock signing out.

How to eat healthy when traveling

Is eating healthy and travelling mutually exclusive?

Not necessarily, but if you have any kind of food restrictions (gluten and dairy) or even if you just want to avoid toxic vegetable oil that restaurants dredge on everything, it can be tricky to know what to eat when on the go.

So how do you eat on the road and find good food no matter where you are?

Great question. (Thanks Stella Orange!)

Airports are stressful, crankiness-inducing places as is. Add in the fact that there’s dozens of fast food and pretty much zilch in the way of health food, and it can be disastrous for your health and sanity.

But there’s many ways to keep on track and not have to compromise your values or your palate.

You can bring your own food, but you have to know how to pack it and what to say to TSA agents…I’ve actually gotten kicked out of airports before for trying to bring my own healthy food. Don’t let that expensive food get trashed at security!

We’ll cover:

  • What to do if you’re diabetic or have low blood sugar
  • How to prepare in advance before your trip so you don’t have to starve
  • Healthy snack ideas that you can grab at the grocery store
  • Things YOU can do to make healthy food more accessible
  • What is “camelling it” and why you might already be doing it
  • And what to order in case you have to eat at a restaurant

Today’s Gut’s & Glory podcast goes over my personal tips for traveling without incident, and more importantly, without eating junk that makes you feel sick upon arrival—or worse, mid air!

Comment below and let me know your favorite tricks for traveling smart and eating healthy.

Hello everyone, welcome, I’m Summer Bock, and this is Guts and Glory. I have a question here, one of our frequently asked questions, this one’s from Stella Orange, “Eating on the road, how you find good food, no matter where you are?” This is a great question, because I spent 14 years not eating gluten at all, I spent 6 of those years not eating gluten or dairy, and there was a lot of different foods throughout time that I really struggled with, and you know, you don’t want to be stuck in a food desert, where there’s just convenience stores around with absolutely no real food around you.

I was just in a convenience store last night, and I was still shocked. How come they haven’t caught up? I would love to be in on that whole new convenience store thing, where I want to start this, somebody go in on this with me, call me, let’s do this angel investors, call me. What we need to do is we need to do a Whole Foods version of the convenience store at all the BP’s or Conico’s or whatever, and have all healthy food available. It will be amazing, and it will crush it, and a lot of the people who stop there would actually buy that stuff, I promise you they would.

First of all, we don’t live in that world, so let’s talk about what to do based on the world that we do live in. There’s a couple things you want to think about, with travelling, let’s say you’re travelling by air, when you’re travelling you want to think about what foods you can bring with you and through the security. I’ll give you a couple tricks, TSA would hate me for sharing this, but I will say, that if you say that you have blood sugar issues, you can usually get away with bringing food through TSA.

Also, diabetics can get through with stuff like that, they can bring their own food, and then most other issues, you actually need a doctor’s note, but it’s really easy to get a doctor’s note and you’ll get an exception for all the food and drink rules. Consider that, it’s worth it for those of you who really do need to pack a lot of crazy foods with you. I’ve done it, I’ve been the person, I call it camelling it, where you have to bring your extra hump with you, so that you can make it wherever you’re going.

Some of the best things to bring with you are like salads, I love getting like those little boxes of salad, you can dump hummus on it if you want to sneak through without having to break the paste rule or whatever, dump the hummus on the salad, put carrots in there, and then have some smoked salmon or something. It’s a great way to travel. I also recommend bringing some dried nuts, and just various little snacks to have on hand, some Larabars or whatever, just so you have something in your back pocket in case of emergencies. In general, I’m going to say, one of your better options is going to a grocery store and just picking up a few things there. You can go to the grocery store and pick up cold cuts, and put that on a salad and maybe put some vinegar and oil on it, or find a salad dressing that’s decent for you. You can put tuna on the salad or sardines, like I said, hummus is a great staple while you’re transporting yourself around the globe, but especially in the US it’s so easy to find here.

Let’s see, some of my other suggestions are, when you’re ordering food out, is to order salads, ask them if you can do steamed vegetables, ask them if they’ll be willing to roast things instead of frying them in oil. Avoiding vegetable oil is really ideal, it’s one of the big scary things that ends up in a lot of foods when you’re eating out that’s just not good for you, and it increases inflammation in the body. Super hard on the liver too. That’s just some ways to eat some clean foods as you’re travelling, let’s see, what else. Packing healthy snacks to go, always think about that, but when I leave to travel, I always drink a smoothie before I get to the airport, and then I usually have one meal packed, ready to go with me, and then I know that at least I have one meal while travelling I like to eat on the plane, and then I will eat out wherever I get to, whatever restaurant I can get to when I land.

If I know I’m not going to have access to another restaurant, I will bring two meals, and that’s just what I do. I have gotten kicked out of the airport before for bringing sauerkraut through, the TSA guys were like, “This is a paste,” I was like, “This is not a paste, this is vegetables.” They’re like, “Blah-di-blah, there’s water in here,” I was like, “There’s no water, look at the ingredients, there has been no water added to this, this is cabbage and salt,” like seriously? They’re like, “You’re going to have to throw this away,” and I was like, “I’m absolutely not throwing this away,” I was like, “Give me my sauerkraut back,” and they were like, “Take her out of here,” and they kicked me out of the TSA security line at JFK airport, but I wasn’t that worried because I went around, and went in another entrance and still got to where I was going, but yes, I did have to eat some of my sauerkraut and threw the rest away, it was totally depressing.

This was before I knew the trick to say I have blood sugar issues, but sauerkraut is a great thing to travel with, it doesn’t go bad, and I can’t swear to you that it’s going to make it through any health code exemptions, they always say it needs to stay below I think it’s 43 degrees, but this is a traditional fermented food, it’s very well preserved, and as long as you’re eating it within a short amount of time or getting wherever you’re going and putting it in the fridge, it’s going to be fine, it’s a great travel food. I had friends who went on a tandem bike trip down the coast, and I gave them a quart of sauerkraut and they said it was one of their favorite things to bring on the trip, because while they were travelling, every few days they were able to dig into their little sauerkraut jar and have this fresh snack with vegetables, it made it so easy to travel.

Alright, folks, and Stella Orange, I hope that helps. My biggest recommendations for you is vegetables and meat. When you go out to eat, just stick with vegetables and meat, try not to go too crazy, look for the health food shops, look for the whole foods, look for a juice bar, a smoothie bar, these things are popping up more and more, even when you go to the airport, even in Atlanta, Georgia, they have a place called Freshies, I think it’s called, or Freshens, must be. They have salads, and quinoa, and things like that. The world is becoming a better place, and the more that we buy these things, and the more that we ask for these things when we go out, we’re basically demanding that the culture shape and form around us.

These things are going to get more and more accessible, so keep asking for the things that you want to see, I think it’s really important because I want it, I want to see all these great, healthy options everywhere I go, and I want to see one of these amazing convenience stores where all the food there is super healthy. We’re going to just walk down the street, grab a little snack, really cheap snack, really healthy, local vegetables, let’s do it.

What I use to treat my own Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)

I have an Attention Deficit Disorder. It used to be painfully difficult for me to concentrate on something for a long period of time.

I’ve found a something that’s changed that for me and allowed me to get even more done in a day—well, the RIGHT things, not just busy work.

This product is my absolute favorite thing.

It’s the first time in my life that I can sit down at a computer or a pad of paper, stay concentrated for hours on end, and really enjoy it.

This product also works well for those anxiety, depression, and high stress. Some have lowered their medications.

With my clients, we’ve added in this in to start to calm down the nervous system, feed the body the minerals and the vitamins and it needs and help people get to a
better place very quickly.

It’s called EMPower Plus Classic capsules from Truehope.com. (…And no, I’m not getting paid to endorse them!)

Those with digestive issues may find that this multivitamin works especially well because it’s chelated, making the minerals very absorbable.

But this multi is NOT the right first step for everyone, so watch today’s quick Guts & Glory podcast to learn more about this product and if it’s right for you.

Comment below–do you ever struggle with focus?

Hello, hello. I’m Summer Bock. This is Guts and Glory. I wanted to give you a supplement recommendation today. I am not affiliated with this company. I wish I was because I love the products and I’d love to make some cash but I’m not. I want to be clear about that. For those of you who are working with clients, for those of you who are looking for some support in terms of multivitamin, ADD, depression, anxiety, that kind of stuff. This is my favorite one that I recommend for my clients. They’ve got some amazing double blind studies that they’ve done for stuff with ADD. I take this myself. This is my personal stash of my like multivitamin that I take. It’s called EMPower Plus, E-M-P all capital. EMPower Plus Classic capsules. This is by a company called True Hope, Truehope.com.

Here’s the thing, this company will call you after you order from them and they’ll like harass you a little bit and make sure you’re talking to your doctor about your meds and things like that. If you are on some sort of antidepressants, this can actually … I think like antidepressants and ADD stuff, it can affect it because this works so good that a lot of times people have to lower their meds.

I don’t have experience with depression and things like that but I struggle with ADD. It’s been something that I’ve really struggled with my whole life. My mom used to have all these little activities in her purse and every time I got onto the next thing, she’s like, “How about this? Fold this piece of paper 50 times. Let’s play the dot game. Oh look.” I’m just like constantly new little games in her purse. “Would you like to read this book Summer?” It was just an attempt to deal with my constantly needing engagement and new activities and all of that. She did a good job.

I actually find that now that I take this, it’s the first time in my life that I can sit down at a computer or anything, a pad of paper and focus and stay concentrated for hours on end and really enjoy it. I’m a huge fan of this. I like it because the products are chelated so a lot of the minerals are actually absorbed very easily. I work with a lot of digestive issues in my clients and so I find that this products absorbs much faster and a lot of people I’m working with have high stress. That’s why they’re sick. We add in a multivitamin like this to help start to calm down the nervous system, feed the body the minerals and the vitamins and it needs and I’m able to help people get to a better place than where they started off when they came to see me.

This is my favorite thing. Love it. I think it’s fantastic. They’ll call you a lot. Tell them to stop calling you. They don’t need to call you and harass you but make sure that you check with your doctor. This is where you want to just make sure you’re taking the right thing for you. This isn’t an across the board recommendation, this is just what I personally use and what I recommend for my clients if the situation is the right thing.

One other thing I would say is that they’ve started saying that if you have candida that you should take their candida product before taking this because it may interfere with absorption. That’s possible but I have found that even for my clients with candida this is still a great product. I work on killing off candida with people when it makes sense, when it’s the right time. We don’t always just go in and take candida stuff first because sometimes for some of my clients, that just aggravates their situation. It can bring on a number of symptoms including giant cravings for sugar. For some people, they actually need to get the vitamins and … I keep wanting to say vitamins. The vitamins and minerals that they need. Some people need that first. This is my whole concept of gut rebuilding. Some people need to rebuild their body before they do the candida cleanse so I have just found that this is a fantastic kind of like partner supplement in that experience.

All right everyone, Truehope.com. This product is called EMPower Plus Classic. There are other products that they make. I haven’t personally tried their other stuff. I know people who like the other products though. This is definitely in my toolbox and maybe if you give it a try, it might end up being in yours. Thanks so much. This is Summer Bock signing out.

A small ritual to get your digestion up and stress down. Advice from 2 herbalists

Fact: When you are less stressed out, you digest better.

We may be used to tuning out stress, but living in constant fight-or-flight survival mode is a killer for the gut microbiome.

(Microbiome = the living ecosystem comprised of your body’s bacteria—the one that plays an integral part in keeping you healthy. Or not.)

Today we’re highlighting a very special herbal concoction, Rest & Digest. 20 drops of this 30 minutes before a meal is going to have a highly noticeable impact on your digestive system. It works two ways—one, by creating a ritual before mealtime to tell your body to slow down, and two, with targeted herbs to relax you.

This helps your whole body slow down before a meal so not only do you get more into your body, you allow your blood flow to increase in your digestive tract so that you can really fully digest.

Watch today’s Guts & Glory Podcast featuring me and guest host herbalist Lauren of Wooden Spoon Herbs talk about this all natural herbal remedy for busting stress and upping digestion at the same time.

Scientists are finding that our gut microbiome interacts with so many parts of our life. More and more studies show that not only does stress kill your gut microbiome, it also is really bad on your levels of anxiety and depression.

One thing that helps the microbiome flourish is to slow down at mealtimes. I know—so simple and yet so huge. This is the first thing I recommend to anyone who wants to have better digestion, more energy, and immunity.

But you’re also going to want herbal support. Like peppermint, which, besides tasting great, alkalizes acids in the stomach. Catnip stimulate your digestion to get it going and it’s also gently calming. And fennel is used around the world as a digestive aid.

The Rest & Digest formula has all three of these in a tincture bottle that you can take before a meal. This custom formula is from Wooden Spoon Herbs, a small batch apothecary. There’s a limited supply available at SummerBock.com/Shop.

Enter code 10%Extended for 10% your entire order! Limited time discount offer.

Comment below and let me know:

What are your best stress-busting tips? Share and inspire others!



Summer:          Welcome, everyone. I’m Summer Bock, and this is Lauren Haynes.

This is the Guts and Glory blogcast, and we’re going to talk today about a very special herbal concoction. We call this Rest and Digest. Sometimes we call it Destress and Digest. Whew, that was a close call. We’re going to just show you how we take it. Get full dropper here. That’s about 20 drops when you just naturally squeeze and release. You get about 20 drops. You put it in a shot glass of water. Then you can either bottoms it up like this party girl, or you can sip on it like this dainty lady.

Lauren:              It’s like a nice dinner mint.

Summer:          It’s really nice taste. This is a tincture that’s got peppermint, catnip, fennel, ginger, and grain alcohol. The alcohol is gluten free, and there’s less than the amount that’s in a ripe banana. It’s just a really small amount. It’s there as a natural preservative, and really it’s there to also extract all these amazing constituents out of the herbs that we have in here. I formulated this. Lauren at Wooden Spoon Herbs makes this. If you order it, you will get it in your mailbox. It’s really an awesome formula. You might have heard of the Liver Lover Warming Bitters, which is a very stimulating bitters formula that helps you get your digestion really riled up and gets you ready to absorb and extract more nutrients from your food. This is a little bit of a different realm, trying to chill the body out.

Lauren:              Slowing it down.

Summer:          Slow it down. Rest and restore. Get the blood to head out of your hands and your feet and your limbs and your brain and head into your belly while you’re eating so that you can really digest your food well.

Lauren:              Sure.

Summer:          Yes. Peppermint … first ingredient. What do you like about peppermint?

Lauren:              Obviously the flavor. It’s super associated with something that you have after a meal. That’s because it is a digestive aid, a carminative like we had talked about before. It helps expel gas and bloating and just …

A carminative, also known as carminativum (plural carminativa), is an herb or preparation intended to either prevent formation of gas in the gastrointestinal tract or facilitate the expulsion of said gas, thereby combatting flatulence.

Summer:          Yes. Peppermint’s an amazing herb. It also has the ability to alkalize acids in the stomach. Sometimes people take it if they’re feeling really acidic, and it helps them burp a little bit and calm everything down. Catnip … one of my favorite herbs. I went to an herbalist years and years ago. I was trained as an herbalist, and then I got really into okay, how do herbalists do their thing? I would go to herbalists and get consultations. One of my favorite ones, she was like, “Catnip is your constitutional herb,” which is such good news to me because this herb is gently calming. It’s a nervine, so it helps calm your nervous system. It also has a slightly bitter flavor, which means it’s going to help stimulate your digestion to get it going and flowing.

Lauren:              Absolutely. We also have fennel. Fennel is used around the world as a digestive aid. It’s another carminative, so it helps dispel gas and bloating as well as many other attributes. It has ginger, which is an antispasmodic, so any stomach cramping is going to just be quieted with the ginger. Yes. It makes it a really nice-tasting formula as well.

Summer:          I agree. The taste of this is really nice compared to a lot of other tinctures out there. I also love the ginger because it opens up your blood vessels. It helps these herbs to get deeper into your cells.

Yes. Rest and Digest, also known as Destress and Digest. This is what you want to eat … well, I guess you drink … before meals, generally 5-10 minutes before a meal or after the meal. You can do it during if you remember then. I want you to think of this as something that you do as a ritual, where you sit down. You have your little glass of water. You put your tincture in it, and you sip on that. You start taking some deep breaths, and you get ready. You tell your body, okay, food is coming. You get out of this fight-or-flight survival mode and get more into your body and allow your blood flow to increase in your digestive tract so that you can really fully digest your food, because stress is a killer for the gut microbiome.

We’ve been studying this more and more in my gut rebuilding program and talking about this with various experts that I interact with. They’re just coming up with more and more studies that show that not only does stress kill your gut microbiome, it also is really bad on your levels of anxiety and depression. Your gut microbiome interacts with all sorts of your life that you don’t even realize.

Lauren:              Absolutely.

Summer:          It’s not just digestion, people. That’s what we’re addressing here. What else do you think about this? What else do you have to say?

Lauren:              I love Rest and Digest for headaches. I use it a lot for headaches, especially tension headaches, when, like you’re saying, stressed or just so overworked. You just need something to release all your tension. Also if your stomach is in knots, you’re not digesting anything. You’re not absorbing nutrients as well. Rest and Digest I’ll use for tension headaches or any other cramping in my body just to relax and let it all start flowing.

Summer:          I think that’s great. It’s an awesome formula. I hope you guys check it out. Go to SummerBock.com/Products and find all the different things that we have for sale there, made by hand by Lauren at Wooden Spoon Herbs.

Alright, everyone. Thanks so much. This is another episode of Guts and Glory. This is Summer and Lauren signing off.

What’s A Normal Amount to Get a Cold or Flu?

I hear conversations that drive me to the brink of insanity.

Things like, “I can’t go make it tonight. I’m sick,” followed by a sympathetic “Oh yeah, It’s really going around…” or “Yeah, it’s winter so everyone has the flu.”

For the record:

Getting sick every winter is not normal. Getting sick four times a year is not normal. In fact, getting sick every year is also (you guessed it) not normal.

Getting a cold every couple of months is as common these days as the bubonic plague was in the 1300s.

That doesn’t make it normal. It makes it pandemic.

When you’re healthy, meaning you’ve built up your good immune system from your gut and otherwise learned how to set up your life, you only get sick every few YEARS.

Another myth is that the culprit of all the world’s colds and flus is germs.

Nope. On this week’s Guts & Glory podcast I’m giving out the one thing that helped me change the amount I get sick more than anything else.

Watch the quickie video—or read the transcript—here that will save you hours laid up with your box of tissues and your teddy bear(s) and get ready for your new awesome life where you laugh in the face of germs…

Comment below—share your experience so we can all learn!

What’s one thing you can change today, or this week to get less stress? Share on the blog so we can all de-stress just a little bit more!



Hello everyone, I’m Summer Bock, this is Guts and Glory.

We’ll talk a little bit about stress levels and getting sick. It is not normal to get sick every season. It’s not normal to get sick every year. It’s not actually normal to be getting sick as much as people get sick. It drives me crazy that people make so many excuses about why they’re sick. I want you to build a strong resilient body to where you can have a night where you drink or you can have a little bitty sugar binge or you can do whatever and it doesn’t knock you down. It doesn’t take you out.

The way that you do that, besides the fermented vegetables and building up your good immune system from your gut, that’s one of the basis for this. You have to deal with your stress. You are tolerating more stress than you ever were designed to. You need to learn how to set up your life, set up your food, set up your everything, your sleep schedule, your exercise, everything, to where you are able to lower your stress. Just think for a moment what it would be like to lower your stress 50% of what it is right now, 50%. How different would your life be? How would you feel? Do you have access in your day-to-day life to people who can help lower your stress rather than raise it?

I want you guys to untrain the stress response that you have been trained to have. I want you to start untraining your habit to have stress in your life because that is the number one thing that is totally affecting and killing your gut when it comes to getting sick and your immune system.

Get out of the stress pocket, figure out what it takes to, just even this week, reduce it by even a small amount. What’s one thing you can change today, or this week to get less stress? Start taking inventory of your whole life. If you really want to hit this hard and go super deep and actually handle stress once and for all, it’s going to help you on a lot of levels. This is where you start to see people’s chronic illnesses be able to go away. This is where you start to see people’s weight get normal. They start to enjoy life and have fun. This is when you deal with stress but that’s what you get.

Think about this in the deeper dive version of stress. I want you to take this full inventory of your life, pull out a sheet of paper, start making a list of everything in your life that stresses you out. Just put little boxes next to each one and start checking them off. If it feels out of your control, if you feel powerless to it, those are the things that you have to reach out and get more support and start asking people how you’re going to get out of this pocket you’re in. That’s the stress pocket, the place where you are stuck and you have no idea how to get out of it. You know what? Here’s the big secret, you can’t do it alone. You can’t. You got to get help.

Alright everyone, I hope that this tip of the day for Guts and Glory is useful for you. If so, let me know. I would love to hear down below, what stresses you out? What are the things that you can handle this week or today to help decrease stress in your life? Now, for those of you who are feeling bold today, I want you to write down what are the things in your life that you feel completely powerless and unable to change or make a dent it in terms of your stress. Let me know.

Alright everyone, this is Summer Bock. I’m signing out.

The Best Time of Day For Probiotics

There are many nuances to getting the most out of all your probiotics efforts. Afterall, doesn’t everyone want to have the most probiotically packed body in all the land?

You need to know which form to take (as a supplement vs. raw ferments), how much, and when to take them (with meals or in between).

And then there’s this tricky question:

Tracy says, “I love making my own Kraut and eating it, but in my learning as a nutritionist, I learned the best time to take a probiotic is just before bed. What do you think of this and would it be just as effective to eat a couple of tablespoons before bed? I’d be really interested in your insight.”

Great question. First and foremost I would say no, don’t eat sauerkraut before bed.

But you might be surprised at WHY I don’t recommend this. Watch the video or read the transcript on the blog to find out!

This week’s Guts & Glory podcast answers this AND has some great advice on how to lower your body’s acidity.

Watch to learn:

  • What time of day is best for getting your probiotic fix
  • In a capsule or on a fork? The best method to take your probiotic
  • Best practice—taking probiotics with meals or when your belly’s empty
  • Flushable evidence—the best sign that what you’re doing is working!

Join me live for my newest Webinar on Monday! Sign up here.

Comment below—share your experience so we can all learn!

Do you notice a difference in the time of day to take probiotics?

Welcome everyone, I’m Summer Bock. This is Guts and Glory. We get a lot of questions and email, and I wanted to start answering those for you a little bit more formally. Here we have a question from Tracy.

Tracy says, “I love making my own Kraut and eating it, but in my learning as a nutritionist, I learned the best time to take a probiotic is just before bed. What do you think of this and would it be just as effective to eat a couple of tablespoons before bed? I’d be really interested in your insight.”

Tracy Bosnian, thank you so much for asking. This is a great question. First and foremost I would say no, don’t eat sauerkraut before bed.

The main reason is having that acidity in your mouth is not ideal, it’s bad for your teeth. You should really keep your meals to two or three meals a day, and you shouldn’t be eating or snacking in between. It’s not good for your mouth, it’s not good for the pH, and it will make different organisms grow in your mouth than what you want.

Really focus on eating two to three times a day, not eating in between, and that really means not eating right before bed. Instead I would recommend taking a probiotic before bed. I’ve found in my work in the Gut Rebuilding Program that there are two different ways to do it. You can take probiotics with meals and you can take probiotics away from meals.

It works depending on the person. I find that with all my clients in that program we try it both ways and see which one works better for you. You can tell if it’s working because you get closer to the Golden Doodle. Your digestion is running smoothly, you have the Golden Doodle and that’s how you’ll know that this is actually an effective tool for you.

Taking them with meals, my fave way to do that is through kimchi and sauerkraut or other fermented foods that are rich in probiotics. Then if you want to take it at night I recommend taking the probiotic pill itself.

Tracy, I hope that helps you in your endeavors as a nutritionist, and helps you advise your clients as well. Thank you so much for submitting your question. Everyone, this is Summer Bock signing out.