HOPE TO HEAL

Hope for those suffering from Lyme Disease

Food As Medicine Video

A visitor to my site left a link to his site where you can purchase the videos of Jerry Brunetti on Food as Medicine.

Photo Credit linked to artist on flickr.com

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January 28, 2009 Posted by | A Cure, Diet, Environment, environmental health, Gut Health, Lifestyle, Supp's | , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Outbreak

Here we go again.  Another outbreak of Salmonella is reported to have affected 388 people in 42 states as of January 7, 2009.  Salmonella is food poisoning and from personal experience it can be extremely painful.  The affects of it affecting your gut health for months or even years.   This new outbreak hasn’t been identified yet.  The last outbreak was due to Jalapeno Peppers.  Prior to that spinach.  And to my recollection I can’t remember a case being linked to Raw Dairy!

In support of raw dairy, I offer you this letter by Dr Sears, MD found at Nourished Magazine.

Make sure you pay attention to the charts below.

It’s safer to drink raw dairy than it is to eat raw salad!

Unless of course you grow your own vegetables.  Nearly all of the food in America today is imported.   SICK!

Dear … ,

I get loads of e-mails about my take on things, some of them skeptical. But it’s not everyday I get an earful from a representative of an entire industry. This one really had me scratching my head…

If you’re one of my regular readers, you know I’ve raised some serious concerns about the health hazards of commercial milk. Specifically, I’ve talked about how pasteurizing and homogenizing strips milk of some natural nutritional content—not to mention the addition of artificial chemicals and hormones.

Well, the word got out—way out. One of my readers forwarded my House Call about milk to the Australian Dairy Industry Council (ADIC). The response was not friendly.

They accused me of being a hired gun whose ideas about health and wellness make me a biased commentator. The phrase was “Mr. Rent a Statement for money” and asked if I had anything better to do than write “false and misleading articles.”

First, off this is a strange accusation coming from a paid spokesperson of the dairy industry. Second, even the most skeptical reader would be hard-pressed to show how I profited from my statements about the dangers of commercial dairy products. I’m not in the business of selling milk. I don’t have organic or raw milk myself and I don’t have any connection to the industry. All I did was suggest that organic milk was a better alternative, and cited a new study proving it.

I was also talking about milk in this country, not in Australia. Cattle there enjoy real grasses as well as grains as part of their diet. They don’t get pumped full of antibiotics and hormones like here in the States. In fact, they screen milk down under for these and other dangerous additives and toxins. So if you’re drinking milk in Australia or New Zealand, you’re getting a better product than you would here.

Setting aside those issues, let’s take a look at some of their claims about commercial milk:

“Prior to pasteurization requirements, there were a number of deaths associated with milk-borne bacteria (e.g. Tuberculosis) causing fatal infections.”

The data doesn’t support this claim. There may have been tuberculosis outbreaks in the past. But with today’s modern storage and handling techniques, there’s little evidence that we’re better off with pasteurized milk.

Here’s a graph of some recent outbreaks of food–borne illnesses:

As you can see, milk—whether raw or pasteurized—is among the safest things you can buy when it comes to food–borne illnesses. You ought to be more worried about packaged mixed greens.

“. . . . there is little evidence to suggest that these changes in any way de-value milk as a nutritious food or make it a ‘lot less healthy product.’”

Again, scientific studies reported in Scientific American and The British Journal of Nutrition have shown the opposite to be true. Here are a few nutrients that get lost in commercial milk processing:

Are we to believe that these journals too are “Mr. rent a statement for money”?

As for their contention that:

“Milk is a very good medium for bacteria to grow and prior to pasteurization becoming compulsory, milk was implicated in many food poisoning incidents”

I’ll give them half credit here for getting it half right.

Milk is an excellent medium for all kinds of healthy microorganisms and enzymes to flourish, including

  • Lactoferrin–an immune booster that kills off deadly bacteria
  • Complement & Lyzosome–disrupts bacterial walls, prevents disease outbreaks
  • Mucins–acts like a glue trap for bacteria and viruses, coating their surfaces and preventing them from binding to your gut
  • Oligosaccharides–prevents your stomach acid from destroying beneficial enzymes and nutrients

Most of these naturally beneficial substances do not survive the pasteurization process, even though we know they’re good for you. So much so that the FDA approved lactoferrin as a spray to reduce E. coli outbreaks!1

Meanwhile, it’s not as if pasteurization makes milk completely safe. There have been a number of dangerous outbreaks over the years traced to commercial milk. One involved the bacterium Listeria.2 Another massive outbreak of salmonella infected over 16,000 people in Illinois in the late eighties.3

And the reality is that the antimicrobial properties of raw milk may make it safer. For example, one study found that the most dangerous strain of E. coli multiplied at a significantly lower rate in unpasteurized milk than in its commercial cousin.4

Lastly my “takes” on all your health advise are grounded in clinical research. I stand by what I write—and put those principles into practice with my patients.

So let me make sure I’m clear: raw milk is still illegal in 22 states. However, if it is legal where you live, it’s worth looking into.

If you can’t get it legally, try to find organic whole milk as a healthy alternative. There’s plenty of scientific evidence that it’s better for you than the typical commercial milk on the market.

To Your Good Health,

Al Sears, MD

January 8, 2009 Posted by | Diet, Gut Health, Lifestyle | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Healing Soups

It’s that time of year when we crave and need soups & stocks not only for warmth but for their healing powers. Sally Fallon goes into great depths on the healing powers of bone broth in her book Nourishing Tradtions. You can read more about it here.

Here are a few additional herbs that will enhance the powers of your soups & stocks to bring health and healing. Throw in a root or some leaves and reap the healing benefits. Of course there are many more that you may choose from, but these are a few of my favorites that I keep handy in the kitchen.

Astragalus root
Astragalus is a root that helps to strengthen protective defenses, nourishes the spleen, and tonifies the blood and lungs. It’s an immune system enhancer, and it also strengthens the adrenal cortex.

Nettle

Stinging Nettle: (Urtica dioica) builds energy and strengthens the adrenals, makes bones flexible, gives you healthy hair, and beautiful skin. 1 Cup of Nettle Infusion=500 mg Calcium, generous amounts of bone-building magnesium, potassium, silicon, boron and zinc. Excellent source of Vit A, D, E and K. And is a good source of B Vitamins.(1)

Thyme

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris), a very common culinary herb also has medicinal properties qualifying it as a wonderful cough remedy. Thymol, thyme’s volatile oil with antiseptic, antibiotic, and expectorant properties, is used in commercial cough syrups.(2)

Basil

Basil has potent oils that have proven to have antioxidant powers. Hence anti-aging, anti-cancer, anti-viral, and anti-microbial properties.(3)

Cayenne ( This is the only pepper used in our house for cooking, black pepper is hard on the stomach)

The potent, hot fruit of cayenne has been used as medicine for centuries.

In addition, it has been used for the following problems:

  • Gastrointestinal tract: including stomachaches, cramping pains, and gas.
  • Diseases of the circulatory system: It is still traditionally used in herbal medicine as a circulatory tonic.
  • Rheumatic and arthritic pains: Rubbed on the skin it causes a counterirritant effect. A counterirritant is something which causes irritation to the area to which it is applied. This makes it distract the nerves from the original irritation (such as joint pain in the case of arthritis).
  • Sore throat: If gargled with water it can work as an effective treatment for sore throats.
  • Styptic: Application of cayenne powder has traditionally been considered to have a powerful coagulating ability.
  • Thermogenic: Cayenne pepper is used both internally and externally in colder climates to protect against frostbite, it may be used in a crushed or powdered form in socks or taken internally in a tea to increase body temperature and circulation to the extremities. (4)

Chives

Chives are also rich in vitamins A and C, and contain trace amounts of sulfur and iron. (5)

Garlic

Who can say enough about Garlic!

Garlic has been used as both food and medicine in many cultures for thousands of years, dating at least as far back as the time that the Egyptian pyramids were built. Garlic is claimed to help prevent heart disease including atherosclerosis, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and cancer.

When crushed, Allium sativum yields allicin, a powerful antibiotic and anti-fungal compound (phytoncide). However due to poor bioavailability it is of limited use for oral consumption. It also contains alliin, ajoene, enzymes, vitamin B, minerals, and flavonoids.6
Ginger
The medical form of ginger historically was called “Jamaica ginger”; it was classified as a stimulant and carminative, and used frequently for dyspepsia and colic. It was also frequently employed to disguise the taste of medicines. Ginger is on the FDA‘s ‘generally recognized as safe‘ list, though it does interact with some medications, including warfarin. Ginger is contraindicated in people suffering from gallstones as the herb promotes the release of bile from the gallbladder.[4] Ginger may also decrease joint pain from arthritis, though studies on this have been inconsistent, and may have blood thinning and cholesterol lowering properties that may make it useful for treating heart disease.(7)
Parsley

Purslane

Purslane contains more Omega-3 fatty acids (alpha-linolenic acid in particular[4]) than any other leafy vegetable plant. Simopoulos states that Purslane has .01 mg/g of EPA. This is an extraordinary amount of EPA for land based vegetable sources. EPA is an Omega-3 fatty acid normally found mostly in fish and some algae. [5] It also contains vitamins (mainly vitamin A, vitamin C, and some vitamin B and carotenoids), as well as dietary minerals, such as magnesium, calcium, potassium and iron. Also present are two types of betalain alkaloid pigments, the reddish betacyanins (visible in the coloration of the stems) and the yellow betaxanthins (noticeable in the flowers and in the slight yellowish cast of the leaves). Both of these pigment types are potent antioxidants and have been found to have antimutagenic properties in laboratory studies.[6]

100 grams of fresh purslane leaves (about 1 cup) contain 300 to 400 mg of alpha-linolenic acid. One cup of cooked leaves contains 90 mg of calcium, 561 mg of potassium, and more than 2,000 IUs of vitamin A.(9)

Rosemary

Rosemary is extremely high in iron, calcium, and Vitamin B6.(10)

Sage

The Latin name for sage, salvia, means “to heal”. Although the effectiveness of Common Sage is open to debate, it has been recommended at one time or another for virtually every ailment. Modern evidence supports its effects as an anhidrotic, antibiotic, antifungal, astringent, antispasmodic, estrogenic, hypoglycemic, and tonic. In a double blind, randomized and placebo-controlled trial, sage was found to be effective in the management of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease.

Internally for indigestion, gas, liver complaints, excessive lactation, excessive perspiration, excessive salivation, anxiety, depression, female sterility, menopausal problems.(11)

Tumeric

One of my all time favorites!!!

In Ayurvedic medicine, turmeric is thought to have many medicinal properties and many in India use it as a readily available antiseptic for cuts, burns and bruises. Practitioners of Ayurvedic medicine say it has fluoride which is thought to be essential for teeth. It is also used as an antibacterial agent.

It is taken in some Asian countries as a dietary supplement, which allegedly helps with stomach problems and other ailments. It is popular as a tea in Okinawa, Japan. It is currently being investigated for possible benefits in Alzheimer’s disease, cancer and liver disorders.

It is only in recent years that Western scientists have increasingly recognised the medicinal properties of turmeric. According to a 2005 article in the Wall Street Journal titled, “Common Indian Spice Stirs Hope,” research activity into curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, is exploding. Two hundred and fifty-six curcumin papers were published in the past year according to a search of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Supplement sales have increased 35% from 2004, and the U.S. National Institutes of Health has four clinical trials underway to study curcumin treatment for pancreatic cancer, multiple myeloma, Alzheimer’s, and colorectal cancer.

A 2004 UCLA-Veterans Affairs study involving genetically altered mice suggests that curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, might inhibit the accumulation of destructive beta amyloids in the brains of Alzheimer’s disease patients and also break up existing plaques. “Curcumin has been used for thousands of years as a safe anti-inflammatory in a variety of ailments as part of Indian traditional medicine,” Gregory Cole, Professor of medicine and neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA said.

Another 2004 study conducted at Yale University involved oral administration of curcumin to mice homozygous for the most common allele implicated in cystic fibrosis. Treatment with curcumin restored physiologically-relevant levels of protein function.

Anti-tumoral effects against melanoma cells have been demonstrated.

A recent study involving mice has shown that turmeric slows the spread of breast cancer into lungs and other body parts. Turmeric also enhances the effect of taxol in reducing metastasis of breast cancer.

Curcumin is thought to be a powerful antinociceptive (pain-relieving) agent. In the November 2006 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism, a study was published that showed the effectiveness of turmeric in the reduction of joint inflammation, and recommended clinical trials as a possible treatment for the alleviation of arthritis symptoms. It is thought to work as a natural inhibitor of the cox-2 enzyme, and has been shown effective in animal models for neuropathic pain secondary to diabetes, among others.

Presenting their findings at the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting in San Francisco in June 2008, researchers discovered that turmeric-treated mice were less susceptible to developing type 2 diabetes, based on their blood glucose levels, and glucose and insulin tolerance tests. They also discovered that turmeric-fed obese mice showed significantly reduced inflammation in fat tissue and liver compared to controls. They speculate that curcumin in the turmeric lessens insulin resistance and prevents type 2 diabetes in these mouse models by dampening the inflammatory response provoked by obesity.(12)

(1) Source: Susun S Weed

(2) Source:Henrietta’s Herbal Page

(3-12) Source: Wikipedia

October 11, 2008 Posted by | Diet, Gut Health | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Your Most Prized Kitchen Tool

‘As Dr. Pottenger was wont to say: “A big stock pot is the most important gift a bride could receive.”‘

Excerpts of this article were taken from Why Broth is Beautiful, By Kaayla T. Daniel, MS CCN.

I do recommend you read the entire article because there is so much to learn about this wonderful healing food; broth!

~~

“Fifty years ago Pottenger pointed out a reason that raw food diets can be so effective in reversing disease and contributing to rejuvenation. “Man’s food in the raw state consists largely of hydrophilic (water loving) colloids. (attracts digestive jiuces for rapid and effective digestions-according to SallyFallon) The heat of cooking on the other hand . . . precipitates the colloids of our diet. This change in colloidal state alters the hydration capacity of our foods so as to interfere with their ability to absorb digestive juices.” Happily for those who prefer their food cooked, Dr. Pottenger went on to explain that this digestive problem could be easily remedied by adding one-half ounce to one ounce of gelatin to a cooked meal of meat, potatoes, vegetables and fruits.”

Gelatin and the Liver

“Early research has also indicated that gelatin helps the liver. This is plausible in that the liver uses the amino acid glycine for detoxification, and its ability to detoxify is limited by the amount of glycine available. Back in 1935, Reuben Ottenberg, MD wrote in the Journal of the American Medical Association: “It has been suggested that the administration of extra amounts of proteins containing an abundance of glycine (such as gelatin) will help the work in the liver. This seems particularly plausible since the recent work of Quick, who has shown that the ability of the liver to perform this protective synthesis is limited by the amount of glycine available.”

Ottenberg concluded with the recommendation that patients with jaundice and other liver problems take 5 to l0 grams of gelatin per day either in the form of food or as a powdered medicinal supplement.

The big question is why so many early studies showing the healing power of gelatin have languished in obscurity. The easy explanation is that after the 1930s, pharmaceutical drugs were widely prescribed for ills that were once healed with gelatin.

Most commercial gelatins today are brewed exclusively from pigskins or cowhide and so include no cartilage or bones. Years ago, however, some commercial cartilages came from mystery blends of cartilage, bones, skin and other junked animal parts. All these combinations differed in terms of their physical and chemical characteristics and in their physiologic actions. Gotthoffer reported that even glue was sometimes sold as gelatin. Complicating matters further, some of the so-called “gelatin” studies were done with the isolated amino acid glycine.”

~~~

“Remember also that the amino acids in gelatin, like all amino acids, can only be properly utilized when the diet contains sufficient fat-soluble activators–vitamins A and D–found exclusively in animal fats. So don’t hesitate to put cream in your broth-based soups and sauces, and include other sources of vitamins A and D in your diet, such as butter, egg yolks and cod liver oil.”

In your next bowl of broth or soup, whisk in a raw egg yolk for added nourishment. You won’t taste it at all. Of course make sure you know the source of your eggs, before eating them raw.

~~~

According to Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions, there are many other important ingredients that go into broth . Cartilage is one that has recently been shown to be remarkable in treating cancer and bone disorders. Collagen has been used successfully in treating rheumatoid arthritis and it’s especially necessary for those of us with Lyme Disease. Spirochetes feed on collagen, so it’s important to nourish your body with broths and to use products with MSM added in like Dr Ron’s body care products.

~~~

Cooking bone broth is very easy and effortless. When our steer is processed for the freezer, we make sure to ask for all the bones. You can take 2-3 good size bones and throw them in a stock pot of water. It’s recommended to add a dash of ACV (apple cider vinegar), due to it’s ability to draw out more minerals and calcium from the bones. I cook all my stocks, whether chicken or beef, all day (8-10 hrs). At night I put the pot in the extra frig and pull it out in the morning and cook it another 10 hrs. I’ve never had a pot not gel. Mine gel all the way through.

When I use one of our chickens for grilling, I collect all the backs and necks in a ziplock in the freezer. After I have a few then I can make a pot of chicken stock. It’s a bit tedious to pick out all the tiny little bones. But since they are cooked to the point of almost dissolving, it’s not a big deal to get one and chew it up….hey, more nourishment! And make sure when you get your fresh chickens you request the heads and feet too! They hold the secret to what is fondly referred to as Jewish Penicillin.

If I’m planning to make a pot of chicken soup or beef vegetable, I wait until the second day and after cooking another 4-5 hrs, I then add the veggies. If I want some plain stock then I’ll skim some off to freeze. It’s great having nourishing little stock cubes (freeze in ice cube trays), that can be thrown in whatever you’re cooking; sauces, rice dishes, veggies. I spend many a winter day, cooking pots of stock and freezing containers of chicken or beef soup. They make a great quick meal and are extremely healthy during the winter months, as well as all year.

October 6, 2008 Posted by | Diet, Gut Health, Infections | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Traditional Diet

I follow the diet of Weston A Price.  It’s one that promotes nutrient dense foods, traditional foods, lacto-fermented foods, bone broths, raw dairy, soy free foods, grass-fed meats, and community supported farming.  The last words of Dr Price on June 23, 1948 were, “you teach, you teach, you teach!”

It’s my goal on this website to teach you why these foods are life giving.  Why they allow one to heal from chronic illness and maintain health.

The words “nutrient dense” and “traditional foods” may be new to you, they were to me.  The Weston A Price Foundation says the characteristics of a traditional diet look like this:

  1. The diets of healthy primitive and nonindustrialized peoples contain no refined or denatured foods such as refined sugar or corn syrup; white flour; canned foods; pasteurized, homogenized, skim or low-fat milk; refined or hydrogenated vegetable oils; protein powders; artificial vitamins or toxic additives and colorings.
  2. All traditional cultures consume some sort of animal protein and fat from fish and other seafood; water and land fowl; land animals; eggs; milk and milk products; reptiles; and insects.
  3. Primitive diets contain at least four times the calcium and other minerals and TEN times the fat soluble vitamins from animal fats (vitamin A, vitamin D and the Price Factor–now believed to be vitamin K2) as the average American diet.
  4. In all traditional cultures, some animal products are eaten raw.
  5. Primitive and traditional diets have a high food-enzyme content from raw dairy products, raw meat and fish; raw honey; tropical fruits; cold-pressed oils; wine and unpasteurized beer; and naturally preserved, lacto-fermented vegetables, fruits, beverages, meats and condiments.
  6. Seeds, grains and nuts are soaked, sprouted, fermented or naturally leavened in order to neutralize naturally occuring antinutrients in these foods, such as phytic acid, enzyme inhibitors, tannins and complex carbohydrates.
  7. Total fat content of traditional diets varies from 30% to 80% but only about 4% of calories come from polyunsaturated oils naturally occurring in grains, pulses, nuts, fish, animal fats and vegetables. The balance of fat calories is in the form of saturated and monounsaturated fatty acids.
  8. Traditional diets contain nearly equal amounts of omega-6 and omega-3 essential fatty acids.
  9. All primitive diets contain some salt.
  10. Tradtional cultures consume animal bones, usually in the form of gelatin-rich bone broths.
  11. Traditional cultures make provisions for the health of future generations by providing special nutrient-rich foods for parents-to-be, pregnant women and growing children; by proper spacing of children; and by teaching the principles of right diet to the young.

Dietary Guidelines

  1. Eat whole, natural foods.
  2. Eat only foods that will spoil, but eat them before they do.
  3. Eat naturally-raised meat including fish, seafood, poultry, beef, lamb, game, organ meats and eggs.
  4. Eat whole, naturally-produced milk products from pasture-fed cows, preferably raw and/or fermented, such as whole yogurt, cultured butter, whole cheeses and fresh and sour cream.
  5. Use only traditional fats and oils including butter and other animal fats, extra virgin olive oil, expeller expressed sesame and flax oil and the tropical oils—coconut and palm.
  6. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, preferably organic, in salads and soups, or lightly steamed.
  7. Use whole grains and nuts that have been prepared by soaking, sprouting or sour leavening to neutralize phytic acid and other anti-nutrients.
  8. Include enzyme-enhanced lacto-fermented vegetables, fruits, beverages and condiments in your diet on a regular basis.
  9. Prepare homemade meat stocks from the bones of chicken, beef, lamb or fish and use liberally in soups and sauces.
  10. Use herb teas and coffee substitutes in moderation.
  11. Use filtered water for cooking and drinking.
  12. Use unrefined Celtic seasalt and a variety of herbs and spices for food interest and appetite stimulation.
  13. Make your own salad dressing using raw vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and expeller expressed flax oil.
  14. Use natural sweeteners in moderation, such as raw honey, maple syrup, dehydrated cane sugar juice and stevia powder.
  15. Use only unpasteurized wine or beer in strict moderation with meals.
  16. Cook only in stainless steel, cast iron, glass or good quality enamel.
  17. Use only natural supplements.
  18. Get plenty of sleep, exercise and natural light.
  19. Think positive thoughts and minimize stress.
  20. Practice forgiveness.

Dietary Dangers

  1. Don’t eat commercially processed foods such as cookies, cakes, crackers, TV dinners, soft drinks, packaged sauce mixes, etc.
  2. Avoid all refined sweeteners such as sugar, dextrose, glucose and high fructose corn syrup.
  3. Avoid white flour, white flour products and white rice.
  4. Avoid all hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated fats and oils.
  5. Avoid all vegetable oils made from soy, corn, safflower, canola or cottonseed.
  6. Do not use polyunsaturated oils for cooking, sauteing or baking.
  7. Avoid fried foods.
  8. Do not practice veganism; animal products provide vital nutrients not found in plant foods.
  9. Avoid products containing protein powders.
  10. Avoid pasteurized milk; do not consume lowfat milk, skim milk, powdered milk or imitation milk products.
  11. Avoid battery-produced eggs and factory-farmed meats.
  12. Avoid highly processed luncheon meats and sausage containing MSG and other additives.
  13. Avoid rancid and improperly prepared seeds, nuts and grains found in granolas, quick rise breads and extruded breakfast cereals, as they block mineral absorption and cause intestinal distress.
  14. Avoid canned, sprayed, waxed, bioengineered or irradiated fruits and vegetables.
  15. Avoid artificial food additives, especially MSG, hydrolyzed vegetable protein and aspartame, which are neurotoxins. Most soups, sauce and broth mixes and commercial condiments contain MSG, even if not so labeled.
  16. Avoid caffeine-containing beverages such as coffee, tea and soft drinks. Avoid chocolate.
  17. Avoid aluminum-containing foods such as commercial salt, baking powder and antacids. Do not use aluminum cookware or aluminum-containing deodorants.
  18. Do not drink fluoridated water.
  19. Avoid synthetic vitamins and foods containing them.
  20. Do not drink distilled liquors.
  21. Do not use a microwave oven.

October 2, 2008 Posted by | Diet, Gut Health | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment