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Sunday, December 11, 2011

How Doctors Die

 If you have already invited disease into your life and your end looks immenent, what do you want your last days, weeks and months to be?  You know me, my first choice is prevent disease.  Heal what's already going on and live to your full human potential.  But if it's beyond healing, the end of life can go many ways.  

I commend this article for your consideration.

Food for thought.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

So what IS a healthy diet, really that prevents disease (and cures it?)

...or what one of my readers asked yesterday, "So what DO you eat when you don't eat grains?"

The question is illustrative of how prevalent is grass seed in our diet--yes, all grains and cereals are grass seeds.  Most Americans eat so much grain--cereal, bread, rice, pasta, corn, etc--that they cannot imagine eliminating it.  It forms the backbone of the American diet.  And it shows!

So let's talk about how we got here--from hunter/gatherer ancestors of which there are only a few scattered tribes left...They had no grocery stores.  They had nature.  They hunted and fished and gathered eggs and frogs and insects and shellfish if they were near the sea.  They found leaves and twigs and roots that were tasty.  They picked berries and other fruit and nuts when they found them.  Grass seeds were too labor intensive to eat.  The roots they found were full of fiber and often very colorful (not like a potato that is just chains of glucose with almost no nutrients.)  The leaves and greens our ancestors ate were organic (of course) and fruit was seasonal. 

The animals they ate roamed free eating natural stuff too.  No cramming them into feed lots, no cramming corn and oats down their gullets and then shooting them full of antibiotics when they got sick.  Those animals didn't have marbled meat.  They were lean.  But the humans from whom we decended ate the whole animal--fat, brain, heart, tongue, liver, kidneys, bones and meat--so they got the fattest parts of the animals besides the lean meat.  That's our heritage.  The BS we've been told (saturated fat causes heart disease, cholesterol is dangerous, whole grains are healthy) comes out of the agricultural complex, not our biology.  Read my booklet (50 pages) "Inflammation Run Amok" for more details of why that BS is so wrong, or read
"Good Calorie Bad Calorie" by Gary Taubes, or read "The Great Cholesterol Con".

There was a big hoopla about "The China Study" a book written by a vegetarian named Campbell that looked at diseases in China.  He concluded that animal products were the cause of disease in China.  The data was revisited by a reseacher (also a vegan at the time) but she demonstrated how Campbell fudged to get his conclusions and that more correctly, wheat was highly correlated with heart disease, and those that ate more animal fat actually had lower disease. Read her blog here for a lot more detail.

So what do I eat now that I'm off grains?  Well, it was touch and go for a while while I figured this out, but now I eat eggs and bacon, salads, vegetables and fruit, meat at most every meal, and full fat dairy and dairy products to my heart's content.  I make a lot of soup.  It's an easy way to get meat and veggies in one bowl and I can make a big pot of soup and eat it several days in a row.  No sandwiches though.  Taking a lunch is a little different now.  I make beef jerky for travel sometimes.  I have been known to take a carton of cottage cheese and fruit when I am away from home.  I hope it goes without saying that I drink no sodas, juice or alcohol and about one pound of sugar a year--only incidentally, as in my homemade mango chutney.

I drink milk--but I'm not sensitive or allergic to milk.  If you are, avoid it.  Don't know?  Try ten days with none and see if anything changes.  I avoid vegetable fats.  I use macadamia nut oil in salad dressing I make (oil and vinegar) butter and coconut oil for cooking now and then. 

Meat and good animal fat and vegetables is very filling.  Yes, it puts you out of step with America.  But frankly, since all America is pretty sick and aging badly, being out of step is a good thing.

Read the book "The Primal Blueprint" by Mark Sisson.  I think it is the best of the books about eating like our ancestors did and like we're designed for.  The Primal/Paleo/Ancestral movement is huge and growing--and healthy!!

One more suggestion.  Watch this 17 minute youtube video.  If this doesn't convince you, I'll be very surprised.  It's a TED talk by a doctor who cured herself of Multiple Sclerosis (an incurable disease) and gives good info about mitochondria and nutrients.

One more comment, then I'm finished for now.  If you have health issues now, all this information is far more important than if you do not.  A primal/ancestral diet can cure what ails you--including the biggies (see video) and keep you healthy.  What I'm pretty sure tho, is that the sicker you are, the more important it is to stick to it 100%.  Every time you cheat (and I no longer even want to) you invite in damaging processes again.   You can't heal damage while inflicting it!!!

Best wishes!  And have a healthy and happy holiday season! for e-books about this stuff!

Preventing Cancer and other Noxious Stuff...

Remember last time in talking about cancer screenings I said I opt for preventing cancer rather than screening for it (as tho it were inevitable).  That's because cancer (and a lot of other health disasters) are diseases of civilization.  By that I mean we know that a "civilized" diet causes them.  Our Paleolitic ancestors did not get cancer or heart disease or arthritis or alzheimers or get depressed or a million other things.  Granted, they may have been eated by lions, tigers and bears, but they didn't get the diseases of civilization because their diet wasn't civilized. 

Generally anyone with a brain, the time to look into this stuff and no agenda from agriculture, pharmaceuticals or other monied interests, has figured this out.  That's why there is such a strong (non-mainstream but vocal and persuasive) movement toward Paleo, Primal or Ancestral diet. 

Still, the powers that be must do studies and justify their existence and budgets.  So here's a new one in Nutrition & Metabolism 2011, 8:75, by Klement RJ, et al, titled " Is there a role for carbohydrate restriction in the treatment and prevention of cancer?"

Well, duh! 

Ok, my temper tantrum is over.

Here's what they conclude (the abstract of the paper):

Over the last years, evidence has accumulated suggesting that by systematically reducing the amount of dietary carbohydrates (CHOs) one could suppress, or at least delay, the emergence of cancer, and that proliferation of already existing tumor cells could be slowed down. This hypothesis is supported by the association between modern chronic diseases like the metabolic syndrome and the risk of developing or dying from cancer. CHOs or glucose, to which more complex carbohydrates are ultimately digested, can have direct and indirect effects on tumor cell proliferation: first, contrary to normal cells, most malignant cells depend on steady glucose availability in the blood for their energy and biomass generating demands and are not able to metabolize significant amounts of fatty acids or ketone bodies due to mitochondrial dysfunction.

Second, high insulin and insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-1 levels resulting from chronic ingestion of CHO-rich Western diet meals can directly promote tumor cell proliferation via the insulin/IGF-1 signaling pathway. Third, ketone bodies that are elevated when insulin and blood glucose levels are low, have been found to negatively affect proliferation of different malignant cells in vitro or not to be usable by tumor cells for metabolic demands, and a multitude of mouse models have shown anti-tumorigenic properties of very low-CHO ketogenic diets. In addition, many cancer patients exhibit an altered glucose metabolim characterized by insulin resistance and may profit from an increased protein and fat intake. In this review, we address the possible beneficial effects of low CHO diets on cancer prevention and treatment. Emphasis will be placed on the role of insulin and IGF-1 signaling in tumorigenesis as well as altered dietary needs of cancer patients.

If that's hard to understand, what they've said in a nutshell is that carbohydrates makes us sick.  As I've said here and elsewhere, blood sugar and insulin cause most of the chronic inflammation that causes all disease.  The body is a self healing, self regulating system that WILL stay healthy and functional if you give it what it needs and do not screw it up with anti-nutrients and toxins. 

Our ancestors ate a low glycemic diet for thousands or perhaps millions of years.  That enabled them to survive.  Chances are high that your diet today (if you're a typical American) is a VERY high glycemic diet.  That raises blood sugar to toxic levels and then raises insulin to toxic levels.  THAT CAUSES DISEASE.
Ok, I know, I'm shouting, sorry, forgive me.  If you want to figure out your chances of being sick, non functional and complaining about the aging process, look up the glycemic load of everything you put in your mouth for about three days. There's a handy site for looking up foods.

Here's the thing.  Glycemic load of 10 or below will not raise blood sugar into the red zone.  Anything over 10 is progressively more and more toxic.  Glycemic load is additive.  If you eat a cup of chopped broccoli with a glycemic load of 4 you're good.  But if you add a cup of brown rice with a glycemic load of 22, not only is your load not low but it's now into the high zone (over 20) at 26, and highly toxic. 

Your ancestors didn't eat grains (grass seeds).  You're not adapted for grains.  They make you sick.  The hype all over the media about WHOLE grains is the biggest lie ever perpetrated on the Ameirican public.  And don't get me started on sugar and vegetable oils that are just toxic as all get out!!!

So I suggest you read Dr. Briffa's post for yourself, here:
but I will excerpt below his explanations for why (high glycemic) carbohydrates make you sick.  In case you want to know the mechanisms...

1. Cancer cells feed preferentially on sugar (glucose)
Glucose (from sugary and starchy foods) provides the prime fuel for cancer cells, so a diet lower in carbohydrate may therefore reduce tumour development or progression.

2. Insulin and IGF-1 can stimulate tumour cell growth
High carbohydrate diets increase levels of insulin and what is known as insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) which stimulate tumour cell growth. A lower carbohydrate diet may reduce tumour proliferation as a result.

3. Ketones suppress cancer
Very low carbohydrate diets can lead to the production of ‘ketones’ (mainly produced from fat) that suppress tumours.

4. Low-carbohydrate and ‘ketogenic’ diets ‘starve’ cancer
Low-carbohydrate diets mimic caloric restriction and ketogenic diets mimic starvation – and caloric restriction/starvation is linked to reduce tumour development and progression.

5. Low carbohydrate diets can reduce inflammation
Inflammation is believed to be a risk factor in the development of cancer, and high-carb diets encourage inflammation. Low-carbohydrate diets have been found to be more effective than low-fat ones in terms of reducing markers of inflammation.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Better Cancer Screening tool, if you must screen

In the last blog post I talked about the problem with typical cancer screening. namely mammograms.    Today I want to give you a solution--or two.

First of all, this quote from Dr. David Jockers:

Research has shown that the major mechanism involved with all degenerative disease is inflammation.  Most medical testing searches for disease processes that have already developed.  They are looking downstream to the effect rather than upstream at the underlying cause.  More advanced health care practitioners use instruments and technology that searches upstream for the cause of physiological abnormalities in the body.

So the best health strategy is to avoid inflammation and that, it turns out, is nearly 100% within your power.  That's what I talk about in this blog/newsletter.  BUT...if you've abused your body, have ignored the nutrition that it needs, then maybe testing for cancer is smart.  It makes sense, however to do so in ways that do not add to the risk.

Enter Thermography.  It is a screening that reads surface heat patterns in your body.  Extra heat indicates extra blood flow and that is an indication of inflammation, i.e. disease processes.  So here's what thermography shows in breast tissus.

Thermography is not invasive and does not expose you to ionizing ratiation, itself a cause of cancerous changes.  So my first choice is diet and supplements to eliminate chronic inflammation--the major mechanism of disease.  The human body is self-healing, self regulating and self correcting if given the raw materials to function correctly.  By impication, if it's not functioning correctly--if there is disease process going on--you can still self-correct.  Our culture has this erroneous assumption that diseases jump out and get us--especially when we are aging.  WRONG!!  Actually, we invite them in.  I choose to recind that invitation!  I hope that I'm encouraging you to do that too.

But, if you're worried about disease, choose screening that does not add to the body's toxic burden. Not so you will live forever, but so that whatever years you have ahead are great, fun, invigorating and thriving years!  More information about how to tackle the chronic inflammation that's making you tired, painful, and sick found at for the booklet, "Inflammation Run Amok"