O my Gut!

Their journey took shape with a blend of curiosity and a quest for wellness. A family affair consisting of a husband and wife who bring a unique blend of passion, expertise and a shared vision to their business, complementing each other's strengths and supporting each other every step of the way.
Henriette Lamprecht
Oh My Gut started with less than

200 millimetres of kefir grains and a

small scoby (symbiotic culture of

bacteria and yeast) Marleen

Laubscher and Thorsten

Schidlowski bought from a health

shop. Intrigued by the health

benefits of kombucha and kefir, the

husband-and-wife team embarked

on a journey of experimentation

and discovery. Their first bottles

were officially launched to the

public in October last year.

"Water kefir was relatively new to

us," reflected Schidlowski, whose

mom started making it at home.

Intrigued by its potential health

benefits, he and his wife starting

doing research on kefir and began

crafting their own recipes.

Their dynamic team extends

beyond the two of them.

Emmanuel Kalafelwa, their

dedicated manager, plays a crucial

role in ensuring the smooth

operation of Oh My Gut.

"Emmanuel is not just an

employee; he's like family,"

Schidlowski remarked. His

dedication and attention to detail

have been instrumental in our

success."

Extensive research

While the couple were exploring

water kefir because of her mother-

in-law, Laubscher also started doing

extensive research on gut health.

As a psychologist, she understood

the profound connection between

gut health and overall well-being,

including mental health.

The gut-brain connection

fascinated her and it is something

she is passionate about, she said.

"I was intrigued by how the health

of our gut can impact everything -

from mood to cognition.”

Their shared passion for health and

wellness became the driving force

behind Oh My Gut, but it wasn’t

just about creating delicious

beverages. It also was about

promoting holistic wellness.

"Marleen's expertise added a

deeper layer to our mission,

emphasising the importance of gut

health beyond just physical well-

being," Schidlowski said.

While water kefir is a recent

discovery, kombucha has held a

familiar place in their lives. It’s

something they’d known about,

Laubscher said, but it was often

pricey and not easily accessible in

stores.

Determined to make these healthy

beverages more available, the

couple embarked on a mission to

perfect their own versions.

Believing in its potential to support

gut health and overall well-being,

they wanted to introduce water

kefir to more people.

Strategic move

Introducing kombucha alongside

water kefir was a strategic move,

Schidlowski said, as the hope was

that it would help familiarise

consumers with water kefir and

encourage people to put it on their

shopping list.

"Each batch we create is a labour of

love," Laubscher said, adding that

they are dedicated to offering

products that are not only

beneficial, but also taste delicious.

Driven by their desire to make a

positive impact, the couple saw an

opportunity to not only sell a

product, but also promote wellness

as well as educate people on the

numerous health benefits.

"We are constantly experimenting

with new flavours and techniques,”

Laubscher said.

"It's exciting to see

our vision come to life." Kombucha is a fermented tea drink

which originated in East Asia, and

has been consumed for centuries. It

is made by fermenting sweetened

tea with a culture of bacteria and

yeast, often referred to as a scoby.

During fermentation, the scoby

metabolises the sugars in the tea,

producing various beneficial

compounds such as organic acids,

probiotics, enzymes and vitamins.

Kombucha is renowned for its

potential health benefits, which

include - among others - probiotics,

antioxidants and detoxification. The

fermentation process produces

probiotics, beneficial bacteria that

may help regulate digestion,

support gut health and promote a

healthy gut microbiome. The

antioxidants help combat free

radicals in the body, potentially

reducing inflammation and

oxidative stress.

Some studies also suggest that

kombucha can aid in detoxifying

the liver and improving overall

immune function.

Rich in probiotics

Water kefir, also known simply as

kefir, is another fermented

beverage with origins in Eastern

Europe and Mexico. It is made by

fermenting sugar water (or coconut

water) with kefir grains, which are a

combination of bacteria and yeast

held together in a polysaccharide

matrix. The fermentation process

transforms the sugars into

beneficial acids and carbon dioxide,

resulting in a lightly effervescent

drink.

Like kombucha, kefir is rich in

probiotics that can support

digestive health and strengthen the

immune system. It is nutrient-rich

as it contains vitamins, minerals

and essential amino acids that

contribute to overall well-being.

Some people find kefir easier to

digest than milk because the

fermentation process reduces the

lactose content. The beneficial

bacteria and compounds in kefir

may also help reduce inflammation

in the body.

With the brewing of a batch of

sweetened tea, Laubscher and

Schidlowski carefully select their

tea blends to ensure the best

flavour profile. The tea is left to

cool to an optimal temperature

before introducing the crucial

element, the scoby.

It initiates the fermentation

process, converting the sugars into

beneficial acids and enzymes. This

transformation not only gives

kombucha its characteristic tangy

taste, but also produces probiotics

and other compounds that

contribute to gut health.

Crafting water kefir at Oh My Gut is

a meticulous process starting with

the careful selection of sugar water,

ensuring purity to facilitate a clean

fermentation process. The

introduction of kefir grains marks a

pivotal moment, as these microbial

powerhouses initiate fermentation,

transforming the sugar water into a

probiotic-rich elixir.

Patience is key as the fermentation

progresses, with close monitoring

to achieve the perfect balance of

tanginess and sweetness. Post-

fermentation, the water kefir

undergoes a thorough filtration to

ensure a smooth, clean finish, free

of any residual grains or sediment.

“Each batch undergoes testing to

ensure it meets our standards,"

Laubscher emphasised.

Core values

Expanding their production

capabilities will allow them to reach

more people with their products,

but their core values of natural

ingredients and local sourcing will

always remain at the heart of what

they do.

What started as a small kitchen

experiment has in a few months

turned into a thriving business.

“Today, we sell daily what we

would sell in a month,” Laubscher

proudly mentioned, adding that the



demand for their products keeps

growing.

Based in Swakopmund, Oh My Gut

operates on a small scale, with

plans to establish a small factory in

future.

Apart from Laubscher and

Schidlowski, manager Kalafelwa

plays a crucial role in ensuring the

smooth operation of the business.

All the products are made in a

100% natural way, “and everything

we use that we can buy is 100%

Namibian”.

Currently, Oh My Gut products are

available at Spar in Swakopmund,



Walvis Bay and Windhoek, as well

as Chrismann Bakery in

Swakopmund.

Despite being a new concept, Oh

My Gut has been embraced by the

local market.

"The feedback has

been incredible. Many customers

have shared stories of improved

health, from better blood pressure

to resolving lactose intolerance."



– Facebook: Oh My Gut - Water Kefir & Kombucha; [email protected]

Comments

Namibian Sun 2024-07-17

No comments have been left on this article

Please login to leave a comment

Currie Cup: NovaVit Griffons 10 vs 52 Vodacom Bulls Rugby World Cup U20: New Zealand U20 31 vs 55 France U20 | Australia U20 36 vs 29 Wales U20 | England U20 31 vs 20 Ireland U20 | Georgia U20 40 vs 36 Fiji U20 | Argentina U20 34 vs 24 South Africa U20 | Italy U20 28 vs 15 Spain U20 Katima Mulilo: 12° | 32° Rundu: 12° | 33° Eenhana: 11° | 33° Oshakati: 11° | 31° Ruacana: 14° | 31° Tsumeb: 15° | 29° Otjiwarongo: 9° | 28° Omaruru: 9° | 27° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Gobabis: 10° | 28° Henties Bay: 11° | 17° Wind speed: 18km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 06:18, High tide: 12:50, Low Tide: 18:28, High tide: 00:54 Swakopmund: 13° | 15° Wind speed: 23km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 06:16, High tide: 12:48, Low Tide: 18:26, High tide: 00:52 Walvis Bay: 11° | 20° Wind speed: 28km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 06:16, High tide: 12:47, Low Tide: 18:26, High tide: 00:51 Rehoboth: 9° | 25° Mariental: 9° | 26° Keetmanshoop: 9° | 23° Aranos: 9° | 27° Lüderitz: 10° | 18° Ariamsvlei: 9° | 21° Oranjemund: 10° | 18° Luanda: 20° | 22° Gaborone: 11° | 28° Lubumbashi: 12° | 29° Mbabane: 12° | 28° Maseru: 5° | 21° Antananarivo: 8° | 24° Lilongwe: 15° | 27° Maputo: 16° | 32° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Cape Town: 11° | 14° Durban: 14° | 27° Johannesburg: 12° | 22° Dar es Salaam: 21° | 29° Lusaka: 15° | 28° Harare: 13° | 27° Currency: GBP to NAD 23.64 | EUR to NAD 19.87 | CNY to NAD 2.5 | USD to NAD 18.18 | DZD to NAD 0.13 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.3 | EGP to NAD 0.37 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.01 | ZMW to NAD 0.69 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.33 | RUB to NAD 0.21 | INR to NAD 0.22 | USD to DZD 133.89 | USD to AOA 872.64 | USD to BWP 13.49 | USD to EGP 48.17 | USD to KES 129.98 | USD to NGN 1555 | USD to ZAR 18.18 | USD to ZMW 26.05 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index Same 0 | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1783.48 Down -2.4% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13456.34 Up +0.17% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 27828.92 Down -0.44% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI 9380.4 Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 472.66/OZ UP +0.17% | Copper US$ 4.44/lb DOWN -0.0043 | Zinc US$ 2 884.80/T DOWN -0.62% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 84.58/BBP UP +0.48% | Platinum US$ 1 022.43/OZ UP +1.97% Sport results: Currie Cup: NovaVit Griffons 10 vs 52 Vodacom Bulls Rugby World Cup U20: New Zealand U20 31 vs 55 France U20 | Australia U20 36 vs 29 Wales U20 | England U20 31 vs 20 Ireland U20 | Georgia U20 40 vs 36 Fiji U20 | Argentina U20 34 vs 24 South Africa U20 | Italy U20 28 vs 15 Spain U20 Weather: Katima Mulilo: 12° | 32° Rundu: 12° | 33° Eenhana: 11° | 33° Oshakati: 11° | 31° Ruacana: 14° | 31° Tsumeb: 15° | 29° Otjiwarongo: 9° | 28° Omaruru: 9° | 27° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Gobabis: 10° | 28° Henties Bay: 11° | 17° Wind speed: 18km/h, Wind direction: S, Low tide: 06:18, High tide: 12:50, Low Tide: 18:28, High tide: 00:54 Swakopmund: 13° | 15° Wind speed: 23km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 06:16, High tide: 12:48, Low Tide: 18:26, High tide: 00:52 Walvis Bay: 11° | 20° Wind speed: 28km/h, Wind direction: SW, Low tide: 06:16, High tide: 12:47, Low Tide: 18:26, High tide: 00:51 Rehoboth: 9° | 25° Mariental: 9° | 26° Keetmanshoop: 9° | 23° Aranos: 9° | 27° Lüderitz: 10° | 18° Ariamsvlei: 9° | 21° Oranjemund: 10° | 18° Luanda: 20° | 22° Gaborone: 11° | 28° Lubumbashi: 12° | 29° Mbabane: 12° | 28° Maseru: 5° | 21° Antananarivo: 8° | 24° Lilongwe: 15° | 27° Maputo: 16° | 32° Windhoek: 8° | 23° Cape Town: 11° | 14° Durban: 14° | 27° Johannesburg: 12° | 22° Dar es Salaam: 21° | 29° Lusaka: 15° | 28° Harare: 13° | 27° Economic Indicators: Currency: GBP to NAD 23.64 | EUR to NAD 19.87 | CNY to NAD 2.5 | USD to NAD 18.18 | DZD to NAD 0.13 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.3 | EGP to NAD 0.37 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.01 | ZMW to NAD 0.69 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.33 | RUB to NAD 0.21 | INR to NAD 0.22 | USD to DZD 133.89 | USD to AOA 872.64 | USD to BWP 13.49 | USD to EGP 48.17 | USD to KES 129.98 | USD to NGN 1555 | USD to ZAR 18.18 | USD to ZMW 26.05 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index Same 0 | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1783.48 Down -2.4% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13456.34 Up +0.17% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 27828.92 Down -0.44% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI 9380.4 Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 472.66/OZ UP +0.17% | Copper US$ 4.44/lb DOWN -0.0043 | Zinc US$ 2 884.80/T DOWN -0.62% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 84.58/BBP UP +0.48% | Platinum US$ 1 022.43/OZ UP +1.97%