WARNING: science-based nutrition will rock your world.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Go Ahead: Play With Your Food!

"Nutrient-dense foods are not only good or nutritious. They are, by their very nature, fun. They call to you, seduce you with their beauty, and request you to participate with them in a mutual dance of life."
Douglas L. Margel, D.C., author of The Nutrient-Dense Eating Plan

Just so you know, nutrient-dense foods are those which nourish your body (fresh organic blueberries, raw nuts, dark leafy greens, grass-fed beef, and pastured butter...you get the picture).

Junk foods are those which rob your body of nutrients (fast food sausage biscuits, Little Debbie Snack Cakes, soft drinks, Cheez-Its, Honey Nut Cheerios...really sorry about those last two).

Our gal here may look more seductive with a bit of blush and some cleavage, but don't let first impressions sway you; she's a smooth operator!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

But Cooking Is So Complicated! Part 2



But Cooking Is So Complicated! Part 1

Whine when you say that, and I swear, my eyes will slap you. But, if you're truly lost after boiling water, never fear: George Mateljan's "The World's Healthiest Foods" cookbook will guide you home. You will be enthralled by the beauty of this 880 page book, and inspired - inspired, I say! - by the 500 healthy recipes that take under 7 minutes to prepare.

But wait, there's more. You'll not only learn the best way to prepare these foods, but you'll learn the best way to select them, why you should eat them, and individual nutrient-richness charts for each food as well. Get ready to rock your kitchen! For more astonishment, click here.

Oh, and ps: that's a National Best Books 2007 Award gold sticker on the book cover. Yeah; it's all that.

Friday, April 16, 2010

The Buzzkill on Hot Dogs

You need to know this. You can thank me later, right after you get over being mad. Keep in mind that I'm talking about cheap food here - not clean, humanely raised and humanely processed meat.
  • Kids who eat 12 hot dogs a month have nearly 10 times the risk of leukemia compared with kids who don't eat hot dogs
  • Eat hot dogs once a week, double the chances of brain tumors
  • Eat hot dogs twice a week, triple the risk
  • Pregnant women who eat 2 servings per day of any cured meat more than double their risk of bearing children with brain cancer
  • Kids who eat the most ham, bacon, and sausage have 3 times the risk of lymphoma
  • Kids who eat ground meat once a week have twice the risk of acute lymphocytic leukemia
  • Eating 2 or more burgers a week triples the risk
    The takeaway? NEVER serve your children processed, chemically-laden meat. Do not serve your children meat laced with antibiotics and steroids.
    Your kids are dependent on you to make good decisions on their behalf. Buy the best quality meat you can afford and eat less of it. If your kids still insist on eating hot dogs, tell them they're made of lips and anuses. It's true.

    You don't want people calling your kids anus eaters, do you?

    Murray, M. and J. Pizzorno. Ch. 44, Nutritional Medicine; Textbook of Natural Medicine,3rd edition. St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier, 2006.

    Thursday, April 15, 2010

    Health and Beauty

    If I were called in
    To construct a religion
    I should make use of water.
    -English poet Philip Larkin

    Mount Vernon Springs, NC

    Did Somebody Say Cookies?

    "Good health isn't all or nothing."
    -Ronald Schmid, Traditional Foods are your Best Medicine

    Make a batch of your world - famous chocolate chip cookies. Only this time, bake with the highest quality ingredients you can find - farm fresh eggs from happy chickens, rich spring butter from pastured cows, organic and fair trade dark chocolate, rapadura (unrefined, unbleached whole cane sugar), and organic unbleached flour. Add a quarter cup of strong coffee to the batter for a bit more intensity and a thinner cookie.

    Oh, go ahead, lick the beater. You know you want to.

    Sunday, April 11, 2010

    What's Your Fuel?

    The Scenario:
    Let's say you're cooking a meal in a box, maybe something meaty from Banquet, something fishy from Gorton's, or something microwaveable from Healthy Choice. You've added a side of instant mashed potatoes or Kraft mac and cheese, and some canned peas for green. But wait. You open a packet of pre-made gravy because it's easy, it tastes as good as homemade, and the potatoes need it. You bake off a can of Pillsbury biscuits, and slather them with Country Crock because you've heard butter's bad for you. Let's say you chase that meal with a 20 ounce soft drink, or a couple of tall glasses of sweet tea.
    What Happens Next: Your bored digestive system kicks back in a lazy boy with a remote control, watching the internal equivalent of reality TV.  See, a machine in a factory somewhere has already done the body's job; there's no digestive work to do because this food is already processed. Bummer. It's the rerun your body's tired of watching.
    Why This Matters: When you eat a diet of processed food, your metabolism goes on strike, and your body's 100 trillion little energy factories (that's right, 100 trillion - they're called mitochrondia, pronounced my-toe-CON-dree -ah) start laying off workers because the jobs are all gone. Insulin - your body's hospitality director - totally wigs out and calls for the union boss (that would be you) to help negotiate order and balance, but the union boss is hungry again and slopping cold gravy on a leftover biscuit. See, you're not satisfied because you just ate a plateful of evil, wicked, mean and nasty chemical-laden crap pretending to be food, and it's traveling fast through the pipe, looting your body as it goes. There's too much of everything, and not enough of anything. Too much, not enough.

    And You Wonder Why Your Head Hurts as you Reach For a Prilosec: You're on fire inside because your body is waging war against the foreign invaders and carpetbaggers you put in your mouth. An army of unhappy cells sets up camp in your body's every crack, crevice, and organ - preparing you for a lifetime of painful joints, reflux, chronic fatigue, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. You're depressed, and can't sleep; you're irritated at the world. You gnaw through a pack of nabs and a diet coke to make it through the morning; you grab a quick salad with bacon, cheese, and ranch for lunch, quaff another diet drink in the afternoon, and can't imagine how your co-workers have energy to go to the gym. All you can manage is a drive-thru on the way to your kids' softball practice.
    Problem Not Solved: You call the doctor, get a prescription or two for pain, depression, anxiety, or reflux, and you're never asked this simple question: "What type of fuel do you put in your body?"
    Be the boss! Fire the interlopers! Sure, life gets complicated sometimes. But it'll be a whole lot less complicated when you give the job of digestion back to your gut.  

    Saturday, April 10, 2010

    Water Fact #1

    Your brain is 80% water.
    Not Mountain Dew. Not coffee.
    Not water poisoned by Crystal Lite, but plain, good water.
    Feeling foggy?
    Drink water; your brain needs it!

    Thursday, April 8, 2010

    Walking is Magical...

    "Walking should not be seen as exercise but rather as a necessity. You ancestors walked all day everyday."
                 - Naturopathic Doctors Jade and Keoni Teta

    Wednesday, April 7, 2010

    Chemistry, Peace, and Vitamin C: What's the Connection?

    Linus Pauling!

    The body's need for vitamin and mineral supplementation is nothing new; in 1986, Linus Pauling (1901 - 1994), one of the world's most respected scientists, advocated a regimen so progressive that most modern scientists are just now catching up. In his 1986 book "Live Longer and Feel Better," Pauling, a Nobel Prize recipient in two categories (Chemistry and Peace) offered this advice about vitamin C: "Take vitamin C every day, 6 grams to 18 grams (6,000 to 18,000 milligrams) or more. Do not miss a single day." To read a stellar and current review of Pauling's book,  click here

    "The measures that you take to improve your health and prolong your life should not be so burdensome and disagreeable as to interfere seriously with the quality of your life and make it difficult for you to continue with this regimen day after day, year after year." - Linus Pauling, How to Live Longer and Feel Better

    Vitamin C plays a widespread role in maintaining and restoring optimum health, from warding off the common cold to fighting cancer and other debilitating diseases.

    • anti-aging vitamin; it helps prevent your body from rusting like an old Chevy
    • clears the body of harmful cells; vitamin C bats cleanup
    • helps build your immune system
    • decreases the symptoms and duration of a cold
    • helps the body synthesize and regulate hormones
    • accelerates healing and recovery from injury or surgery
    • lowers the debilitating effects of physical and mental stress
    • helps maintain visual acuity (keeps your eyeballs working)
    • helps maintain healthy gums and lungs
    • acts as an anti-histamine for allergy sufferers
    • increases our ability to convert and absorb other necessary nutrients, including vitamins A and E
    Deficiency Signs
    Scurvy is the classic deficiency disease for vitamin C; symptoms of scurvy include the following:
    • listlessness, extreme fatigue, and weakness
    • irritability
    • vague muscle and joint pain
    • unexplained weight loss
    • bleeding gums
    • gingivitis
    • loosening of the teeth
    • chronic lung infections
    Factors Contributing to Vitamin C Deficiency
    • smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke
    • low intake of fresh fruits and vegetables
    • excessive exposure to environmental toxins
    • excessive alcohol consumption
    Toxicity and Adverse Effects
    • Mild stomach upset or diarrhea sometimes accompanies high doses; choose buffered vitamin C if you have stomach problems
    • chewable or powdered vitamin C can be damaging to tooth enamel
    • vitamin C is safe (non-toxic) at any level; you can't die from it, or be sick because of it
    Nutrient-Rich Food Sources 
    A one cup serving of the following fresh organic fruits and vegetables provide an excellent source of natural vitamin C:
    • bell peppers, broccoli, strawberries, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, cantaloupe, cabbage, tomatoes, Swiss chard, collard greens, raspberries, asparagus, celery, spinach, pineapple, green beans, summer squash, and Romaine lettuce (2 cups)
    • citrus fruits, kiwifruit, parsley, and papaya are also excellent sources of vitamin C
    Average Recommended Daily Dosage Range
    • Children age 11 - 14: 150 to 1,200 mg per day
    • Teens and young adults 15 - 24: 200 - 2,000 mg per day
    • Adults 25 and over: 1,000 - 2,000 mg per day, unless you adopt Linus Pauling's protocol
    • Smokers: 6 grams - 18 grams per day (that's GRAMS), at least
    • For constipation: take 3 or 4 grams of vitamin C on an empty stomach
    Please consult with your Naturopathic Doctor or Holistic Nutrition professional if you suffer from the Vitamin C deficiency signs listed above, or for help determining you or your child's individualized therapeutic dose.

    Lieberman, S. and N. Bruning: The Real Vitamin and Mineral Book, 4th ed. (New York: Penguin , 2007)