• Michelle

Michelle Friendly Bircher Muesli - Once again, one size does not fit all

Updated: Nov 8, 2020

My cousin Chris asked me the other day, should she be eating her Bircher muesli of a morning, could that be aggravating her arthritis? I said, I don’t know, it could be. Bircher muesli is usually soaked oats, fresh apple, nuts, cream and honey, sounds okay, doesn’t it? But again, one size does not fit all of us. For me, I could not eat this, the oats would set off my arthritis and the cream would set off my asthma, with a side order of arthritis just to make sure I was punished enough. My beloved friend Jan could not eat this, the sugar in the honey would have her hands stiffening into bird claws. My friend Jo could not eat this, the cream would do the same thing to her hands as the honey would do to Jan’s.

So that is just three of us, off the top of my head, in my immediate circle, there are even people who are sensitive to salicylates, like my son Jon, who could not eat the apple!

So I say again, one size does not fit all. It is about finding out which, if any, foods are triggering your body’s unhappy responses. It could be gluten, it could be grains, it could be sugar, it could be lactose, it could be the protein in the dairy, casein, instead of the sugar (lactose), it could be the pollen in the air at this time of the year, it could be what your carpet is made of, or what the paint on your walls has in it, it really could be almost anything. The more I learn the more I realise that each and every one of us is unique and a miracle, from me, to Chris, to you, to old Mrs Chook, to my lady’s companion Bruno, to my Mum, to your Mum and so on. You have to find what works for YOU, and what doesn’t. And when you do, come back to us, if we don’t already have some lovely recipes to work around your issues, we can make some. Jo is sorting out a way for you to talk to us so the Cookie House is more accessible.

Here is my sort of version of Michelle friendly Bircher Muesli.


It was slow and simple, one tablespoon of quinoa cooked in a little water until it was absolutely cooked through, half a pear, sliced, skin on, half a kiwi fruit, a handful of blueberries, a curl of sliced cantaloupe, a spoonful of coconut yogurt, all mixed together. It tasted fantastic, was brim full of fibre and nutrition, did not spark my asthma or my arthritis, and I get to have a shiny halo to wear for the morning for having such a healthy breakfast.

Remember, you are unique, you are a miracle, you are not the same as anyone else, so what you eat must suit you, not me, or Jo, or Chris, or your mother, or mine.

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