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
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
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
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
Based in Swakopmund, Oh My Gut
operates on a small scale, with
plans to establish a small factory in
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%
Currently, Oh My Gut products are
available at Spar in Swakopmund,

Walvis Bay and Windhoek, as well
as Chrismann Bakery in
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]