• Anxiety/ Blood sugar management/ Energy/ Health/ Sugar Detox/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Low Blood Sugar causes Anxiety

    low blood sugar

    Following on from my article on Overcoming Sugar Addiction I thought this excellent article and research findings from Trudy Scott (CN) would be of interest. As well as anxiety I have found that a diet high in processed Carbs and high glycemic foods that lead to low blood sugar episodes also cause inflammation in other tissues and can be a contributing factor to many conditions.

    One of the most helpful additions to your diet when transitioning to a healthier way of eating is a breakfast that includes protein, fat and fiber.  I like to make it easy for people that are not used to eating a healthy breakfast by preparing a highly nutritious smoothie the night before and popping it in the fridge. Here is one of my favourite recipes – I like it thick so that I eat it with a spoon and it does thicken slightly overnight so adjust milk accordingly. You can also vary it by adding cinnamon when you don’t have berries or use frozen fruit.

    Choco-loco Breakfast Smoothie

    Into a blender pop

    100-150 ml non-dairy milk like coconut or almond milk  

    a handful of berries, peeled and chopped pear or small slightly unripe banana

    1 scoop of whey free vanilla Protein Powder (or natural plus some vanilla essence)

    2 tsp. Almond Butter

    1 tsp. Coconut oil or MCT oil

    1 Tbsp. Cocoa powder

    1 tsp. Maple Syrup or honey

    50g gluten free oats

    Empty the contents of one Probiotic capsule and blitz until smooth. Cover and pop into the fridge overnight and then in the morning all you have to do is top with a few more berries and nuts for texture – almond flakes, pecans and walnuts all go well with chocolate. Enjoy.

    Article from Trudy Scott CN

    A paper published by the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine last month supports what I see with my clients on a daily basis: when it comes to anxiety caused by low blood sugar (or hypoglycemia) the correct diet can have a huge impact. And this means is the inclusion of enough protein, fats and fiber, especially at breakfast.

    Here is the abstract from the paper: Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Hypoglycemia Symptoms Improved with Diet Modification

    Observational evidence suggests that a relationship may exist between high glycemic index diets and the development of anxiety and depression symptoms; however, as no interventional studies assessing this relationship in a psychiatric population have been completed, the possibility of a causal link is unclear.

    AB is a 15-year-old female who presented with concerns of generalized anxiety disorder and hypoglycemia symptoms. Her diet consisted primarily of refined carbohydrates. The addition of protein, fat, and fiber to her diet resulted in a substantial decrease in anxiety symptoms as well as a decrease in the frequency and severity of hypoglycemia symptoms.

    A brief return to her previous diet caused a return of her anxiety symptoms, followed by improvement when she restarted the prescribed diet.

    This case strengthens the hypothesis that dietary glycemic index may play a role in the pathogenesis or progression of mental illnesses such as generalized anxiety disorder and subsequently that dietary modification as a therapeutic intervention in the treatment of mental illness warrants further study.

    Here are some details about this case report for AB, who was a 15-year-old female student of south-Asian descent:

    Read More

  • Energy/ Healthy Food/ Nutritional Medicine

    Super-nutrition for health and well-being

    Super-nutrition

    Promise to give yourself Super-nutrition for health and well-being in 2016. We are having to cope with more stress, more pollution, more illness, long working hours, frequently poor sleep as well and yet we expect our bodies to cope with it all even with inadequate fuel. You are not going to be getting enough nutrients in Fast Food restaurants or Take Away Pizzas so the balance has to shift to food that you buy and prepare yourself and it doesn’t have to be more costly or time consuming. If you live a very hectic lifestyle or you don’t have a lot of cooking experience then take a look at the services of menu/meal providers like Hello Fresh or Gousto in the UK.

    The main idea to get Super-nutrition is to eat far more nutrient rich food so that you have

    less sugar and processed carbohydrates……………….. and more real, fresh food.

    shift to super-nutrition

    Start by increasing the nutrition in your breakfast. I have just started eating some different breakfasts to do this and to have something hot on our cold winter mornings. I have finally found a way that I really like to eat Quinoa. See recipe…. Read More

  • Five Tibetan Rites/ Health/ Healthy Food/ Mindfulness/ Mineral Depletion/ Sleep/ Stress Reduction

    Mindfulness, stress reduction and sleep.

    Apple icon

    Mindfulness, stress reduction and sleep – who doesn’t need help with these things in their busy lives. If we are stressed, tired and not getting enough sleep we make poor food choices, poor decisions and we don’t work efficiently.

    Start the day right…. in the morning it can help to have a ‘Ritual’. You may already have one but not call it a Ritual and to me, the main difference is that you might do the same things each morning but you probably do them while thinking about everything else you have to do that day/week or while multitasking with emails and internet. It can really help to start the day calm and energised if you do a few things living ‘in the moment’ and concentrating as well as enjoying what you are doing.

    Most mornings this is my Ritual… On waking, drink some water. Go to the loo and splash my face with water. I pull the blinds up to see what kind of a day it is – this morning was a gorgeous golden sunrise, which was a bonus! I then spend a few minutes doing some exercises/stretching, which for me is The Five Tibetan Rites (there is a separate Post on this in Contents). It is easy to do this on automatic but I find it is much more beneficial if I do it with strength and purpose and also paying attention to deep breathing. I end my repetitions with ‘Pose of a Child’ and then a kneeling prayer position ‘Namaste’. Find whatever exercise or stretching you can do and build on it every week – it will stretch and warm up your muscles and joints and help get plenty of oxygen and lymph flowing around your body.

    I then wash and dress. Breakfast varies with how I feel but I always love 1 or 2 coffees – black with a 1/4 tsp Coconut oil. This morning I had Paleo pancakes (made with banana, egg and almond butter) with pecan nuts and maple syrup..YUM! That is a treat about once a week, other days I might have a herb omelette, or rice cereal with a banana and coconut milk and sometimes I just have a couple of dates and some walnuts or almonds or a piece of fruit. If you burn a lot of energy and like a cooked breakfast then bacon, quality sausages, eggs, avocado, mushrooms are all good options and better than cereal and toast.

    If you can avoid doing anything else while eating and drinking then great – think about what you are eating and enjoy every mouthful, enjoying holding a warm cup of drink in your hands or slowly sip a home-made smoothie while contemplating the health and energy giving ingredients. Read More

  • Blood sugar management/ Cancer Prevention/ Health/ Healthy Food/ Mineral Depletion/ Sizzling Minerals/ Sugar/ Sugar Detox

    Need HELP with SUGAR?

    Need HELP with SUGAR?

    The health dangers of sugar have been in the news a lot lately with governments even considering taxing sugary drinks, as they have in Mexico, to try and improve the health of the population – especially children. So if you need help with sugar avoidance and dealing with a ‘sweet tooth’ here are a few pointers.

    Hidden Sugars

    Aside from not adding sugar to your tea and coffee and avoiding sugar laden desserts, cakes and cookies you should start checking labels so that you can find how much hidden sugar is in your diet. If you have children then checking sugar intake is vital to their health as well as protecting their teeth. A third of children leave primary school already obese!

    1 teaspoon of sugar = 4 g

    Daily recommended maximum intake is 50 g (1.7 oz) for Women and 70 g (2.5 oz) for Men but 28 g = 1 oz (7 teaspoonfuls) would be better. Many people average nearer 130 g a day which is equal to 32 teaspoonfuls!

    First of all sugar is disguised by so many different names, anything that ends in ‘ose’, fructose, sucrose, maltose, dextrose, then cane sugar, cane crystals, corn syrup, fruit concentrates, honey, Maple syrup and Agave.

    High Fructose Corn Syrup seems to add more fat around the middle and around vital organs (visceral fat) -the most dangerous kind.

    Soft drinks are the worst for hidden sugar, even ‘enhanced’ water can have 15 g per 500 ml. Pre-packaged food – even savoury foods like Pasta Sauce and coleslaw can be loaded with sugar; bread, biscuits, energy bars, low fat yogurt often has more sugar than regular yogurt.Need help with Sugar

    Processed Cane or Beet sugar doesn’t contain any nutrients and is often called ’empty calories’  but other sugar types are also devoid of nutrients and even heavily processed using chemicals. When I want to sweeten something I would usually choose a little honey, Pure Maple Syrup or molasses sugar because these do also contain some nutrient benefit and are not over processed.

    Artificial Sweeteners

    It is not a healthy option to swap your sugar for artificial sweeteners as they have many additional problems.

    • they may taste sweet but they have no useful energy
    • they have no appetite suppression effect, unlike sugar and so can cause overeating and weight gain.
    • Many sweeteners may be toxic to the body
    • if you really feel you need them -do your research. At present Stevia seems to be the least toxic but definitely avoid Aspartame which has been linked to mental problems, brain tumour and epilepsy, Parkinson’s Disease, Fibromyalgia and diabetes plus possibly cancer. Avoid Sucralose which is sucrose that has been denatured using Chlorine.

    How to Cut Down on Sugar

    If you have become aware of just how much sugar you are eating and have started reading food and drink labels that is a huge step in the right direction. We can all be caught out – my son is hooked on mince pies at the moment and 1 mince pie has 22.5 g sugar which is nearly 6 tsps of sugar and only 1 tsp off his healthy daily limit. So my tips are:- Read More

  • Blood sugar management/ Exclusion diet/ Nutritional Medicine/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Help with your detox diet – 2- Meal planning

    Gluten and dairy free fast food

    Meal Planning on your Elimination diet.

    Following on from healing your Leaky Gut and detoxing from Sugar we need to discover what foods might be causing a problem or intolerance – meal planning and appropriate shopping are important. The aim is to omit foods which can cause inflammation, slow digestion and blood sugar spikes, therefore Dairy foods, grains (gluten containing plus non-gluten) and cereals, sugar and high sugar/carbohydrate fruits like bananas and dried fruit are left out initially. The first couple of weeks on a detox/elimination diet are quite a challenge but if you plan ahead and are prepared to experiment a bit you will enjoy it. Quite often we get into a rut with our meals, with little time we throw something together at the last minute with whatever we have in the fridge. When you plan a change of diet it brings the food back into full focus and you can get more enjoyment out of cooking and trying something new. After 1 week I added in brown rice and sweet potato and had no trouble sticking to the diet because I felt so much better. Joint pain disappeared, no bloating after meals and much more energy.

    Get your mindset right. The main idea being that we are trying to make it easy for the body to digest and assimilate the nutrients it needs.

    Think protein and vegetables three times a day.

    Breakfast usually causes us the most problems. No cereal, no toast, no sugar !

    Do not try to go low fat as well, even if that is how you have been used to eating. You need those good fats because some of those essential nutrients are fat-soluble vitamins. You will lose some weight anyway because your body will adjust to the low carbs by boosting your metabolism.

    Here are just some suggestions for Breakfast

    • bacon, tomatoes and rocket
    • eggs and spinach
    • Herb omelette and bean-sprouts
    • Mushroom omelette and asparagus
    • Bacon and mushrooms with cooked spinach or Kale
    • Miso soup with grilled fish and zucchini (courgette)
    • Cashew nut yogurt or coconut yogurt(non dairy) these are available in some shops
    • Coconut kefir
    • Smoothies – there are hundreds of recipes but experiment with your own. I love Almond milk with fresh raspberries or strawberries and a teaspoon of coconut butter or a chocolate one with a hot cup of cinnamon or ginger tea, cocoa powder, a few nuts and coconut cream.

    If it is texture you are missing try a few nuts – brazil, pecan, cashew, or walnut and keep a small bag of them with you when you are out and about and need a snack to keep your blood sugar OK.

    Lunch  –  Protein of your choice and a large (and as varied as possible) salad.

    Dinner  –  Protein of your choice and a large amount of steamed or lightly cooked vegetables.

    I love stir -frys as they are quick and easy and you can make them varied and colourful.

    There are times when you just feel like you need a sweet course. You could do a less liquid smoothie with frozen berries and a spoon of coconut butter and it will come out like a mousse. Generally it is better to have fruit in between meals and not immediately after so I prefer to leave a couple of hours between a main meal and fruit, it just helps the digestion. I have made my own Raw Chocolate slightly sweetened and with nuts or peppermint essence – it is so rich you only need a little! There is caffeine in it so anyone who is caffeine sensitive should be careful eating it in the evening.

    Just enjoy trying new combinations of food end enjoy the vitality that comes from eating real, fresh food.

    After the initial phase of the detox you can add more. We found good quality Lemon, Raspberry and Mango Sorbets and a gorgeous chocolate or vanilla coconut ice cream that was dairy free and no nasty additives. Also found lots of ideas and recipes on Pinterest under Paleo Diet which should be Grain and Dairy free.

  • Nutritional Medicine/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Help with Detox Diet – SUGAR

    blood sugar

    If you are thinking ‘well she gave me a big shopping list but what am I actually going to eat?’ in Healing Your digestive Tract, I don’t blame you, it is probably a huge change to what you are used to. In the next few posts I will help by giving you information, guidelines and links to help you through the first 2-4 weeks, as well as some incite into what we did.

    The main idea of a Detox is to take the stress off your digestive system and give your body the nutrients it needs to function well and repair itself.

    So, what are we doing? We need to exclude the foods that can cause the most problems for our immune system and digestive system and observe how we feel after we have done that. The main foods that can disrupt our health are wheat, dairy, whole soy, corn, citrus, yeast, sugar and processed food containing multiple additives.

    I am going to start with SUGAR.

    We need to eliminate sugar because it is not a food – it has no nutrient value – only empty calories that stress our bodies to produce more insulin in an effort to keep our blood sugar at a reasonable level and therefore minimise the damage it can do to our bodies. If you manage nothing else your long-term health will benefit from this step.

    if you normally have quite a lot of sugar on a daily basis you might think that this will be impossible to achieve but if you understand why you have a sugar addiction then you might find it easier.

    When do you most crave a sugar hit?

    • when you are stressed
    • when you are exhausted
    • when you have skipped a meal
    • when you are depressed
    • when you haven’t had enough sleep

    These are all the times when your body is struggling to cope because the minerals that are required by every cell in your body has been depleted and therefore the body is not coping. What it needs is rest, relaxation, a nutritious meal and time to recover. By giving the body a sugar hit we are pushing it further than it wants to go, we are giving it an adrenalin shot and literally the Adrenal glands kick in like kicking spurs into a an exhausted horse. For a while you feel better but if you don’t give your body what it really needs it will feel even worse the next time that blood sugar drops.

    Do you recognise that  pattern?

    1. You have a bad night and get out of bed late so there is no time for Breakfast – you grab a coffee….
    2. by mid-morning you feel a dip and you know you need to eat something but all you can get is a biscuit or crisps and another coffee……
    3. by lunchtime you are ‘starving’ and so you go for a high carbohydrate, high fat sandwich or roll and a high sugar drink or juice……
    4. by the middle of the afternoon you feel like crap, can’t concentrate and have a headache coming on….
    5. by the time you get home you feel like you have had a horrible, stressful day and you need to relax so you have another sugar hit disguised as a beer or glass of wine.
    6. If you can get out of this damaging cycle of eating and drinking the wrong things you will start to feel and function better within a very short time – why? because your body is crying out for the minerals it needs and when it gets all of those minerals…it will reward you.

    First change your salt. Bleached white salt contains only sodium and this is the form that does a lot of damage and can cause High Blood Pressure, Heart disease, Kidney disease etc. Table salt has iodine added back in because when white table salt was first introduced there was an epidemic of Thyroid disease.

    Celtic Sea Salt contains 82 vital trace elements eg. Magnesium,manganese, Boron, Copper, Silicon, Iron and iodine. The benefits of natural sea salt are :-

    • replenishes the body’s electrolytes
    • provides renewed energy
    • provides all 82 trace minerals to promote optimal biological and cellular function
    • balances alkaline/acid levels
    • restores good digestion – starting with stimulating more saliva
    • enables better detoxification
    • can stabilise blood pressure
    • reduces sugar cravings
    • makes your food taste much better!

    So with the detox diet being high in vegetables that will provide high levels of Potassium, Magnesium,chromium etc. and by using natural Celtic Sea salt you are giving the body just what it needs.
    The other way is to take a plant derived mineral supplement drink daily like Sizzling Minerals. For more information on how this product can improve your health and why please watch the video here Simply Naturals or go to the shop directly for free shipping and discount for auto-ship at SHOP

    Next eat some good protein at every meal and carry protein snacks with you when out or at work because these will help stabilise your blood sugar and stop cravings. I have some protein for breakfast like Paleo Pancakes and berries or I put a teaspoon of almond butter or some nuts into my smoothie and I always take either “nakd” date and cashew bites or a small bag of nuts and seeds out with me. A little protein or nut milk drink before bed might stop you waking about 3-4 am due to low blood sugar.

    Fruit and fruit juices can also raise your blood sugar and therefore only berries are recommended while on the elimination diet, firstly because they are less likely to raise your blood sugar than most other fruits and secondly because they contain essential nutrients and antioxidants that help clean up your body.

    Lastly Alcohol is the faster sugar to enter and disrupt your system so try to leave it out for the duration of the elimination diet. If you have a social function to go to a glass of water with lime and ice does not look out of place. If necessary a glass of wine, a Coronita beer or a Tequila shot  but remember that whisky and most beers contain gluten.

  • Autoimmune diseases/ Cancer./ Leaky Gut/ Nutritional Medicine/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Healing your Digestive Tract

    Healing your Digestive Tract and Leaky Gut is the key to your Health

    You can definitely do this!

    Terry Wahls MD has Multiple Sclerosis and had been in a wheelchair for 5 years and by changing her diet and nutrition she made an amazing recovery. You can find  information on “The Wahls Protocol” on this 4 min video here. After just a Year she was able to do an 18 mile bike ride. Now I wouldn’t promise that you could do this (as I certainly can’t cycle that far!) but get the right mind set. As she says “The Magic is in the food. If you don’t change your diet and you just take supplements – you are wasting your money“.

    What I am suggesting here is going to be the basic guidelines and if you want to know more I will point you in the direction of quality, easy to follow information.

    So let’s get started!

    First of all you need to prepare so that you can start in a methodical way and not get overwhelmed by the changes.

    Shop for the foods and supplements you need.You will need to eat more vegetables than you are probably used to so buy plenty of these but only as much as you can keep fresh at any one time. These are the things you will choose from to make meals in the first 14+ days and then we will add in some more.

    Shopping list

    • Meat and fish – buy the best quality you can afford and nothing that has been processed. If you can get organic and free range then all the better. If you buy a quality whole chicken then you will be able to get more than one meal out of it and boil the bones up to make a good broth/soup that is beneficial to the immune system. Lambs liver is cheap and nutritious if you like it.
    • Vegetables – broccoli, cauliflower, salads, fresh herbs, all leafy greens, squash, tomatoes, cucumber, fennel, mushrooms, asparagus, bean-sprouts, bell peppers, onions, garlic, avocado.
    • Fruit – all fresh and frozen berries, lemons and limes.
    • Nuts and seeds – all kinds except peanuts as they are technically legumes (starchy vegetables). They can be toasted and sprinkled on salad.
    • Fats and oils – Olive oil cold pressed if possible,  walnut, almond, flax. Coconut oil and coconut butter are especially important as they have the ability to help you get rid of any unwanted yeast levels in the body and are a healthy form of saturated fat that is important in healing.
    • Dairy Substitutes -Almond milk, coconut milk, other nut milks. Coconut or nut milk Kefir,  Eggs.
    • Drinks – filtered water, mineral water, green and herbal teas (peppermint, ginger and fennel teas are especially good to help soothe the digestion.) Miso soup and coconut water. Apparently Yerba mate tea is very good if you are giving up coffee.
    • Kitchen staples – Apple cider vinegar, all spices, herbs, carob, sugar free raw chocolate (it is possible to make this yourself with cacao butter and cacao powder and I will do a post on this as it is brilliant), mustard and Celtic sea salt or Sel de Guerande from France as these salts are full of natural minerals and therefore not white. Sweeteners Stevia or xylitol if required but I prefer to leave sugar out completely for the elimination diet and I don’t like sweeteners.

    This is wonderful, real food and you will quickly start to feel better and have more energy than usual.

    You may get some ‘odd’ symptoms within the first week. These could include aches and pains where you haven’t previously had them, headache, strange dreams and better dream recall, changes in bowel habit and sleepiness. Most of this can be put down to your body detoxing and should not be severe. Drink more, especially water and this should help. If you have been a coffee addict and you give it up suddenly you may get quite a severe, migraine like headache. I would suggest giving it up by cutting down slowly.

    SUPPLEMENTS.

    In the first couple of weeks you should start with

    • L-Glutamine 500mg -1000mgs per day -an amino acid that can help the gut heal
    • Vitamin B complex 50 or Chlorella tablets (start with 2 twice a day and gradually work up to 15 a day)
    • Vitamin D3 1000iu a day
    • Omega 3 fish oils or Krill oil. If you have problems with fish then try Flax seed oil
    • A good Probiotic with over 5 billion live cultures twice a day.
    • Saccharomyces Boulardii probiotic which is actually a tropical yeast culture made from lychee and mangosteen that can kill certain gut infections like Clostridium difficle, E Coli and Salmonella but if you have blood in your stool, as in Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative Colitis do not take this supplement without medical advice. If you have blood in your stool and you don’t know the reason, see your doctor!
    • Magnesium which can be taken by spraying on the skin or preferably have a Sizzling Mineral drink that you sip throughout the day. This is a natural plant based mineral supplement that contains 75 minerals that are bio-available even to a damaged gut. They are available to buy in Europe and the USA and are expanding worldwide.  See video and shop here.

    N.B. If you have been ill with cancer or have any other illnesses  or treatment that mean you have a low white blood count or are immuno-compromised you should speak with you Doctor before starting this regime. For children follow the intake recommended on the supplement.
    Click here to visit bodykind

    Next step is to get a large shopping bag or box and clear out all your kitchen cupboards and fridge of the things you should not eat while on this detox. Out of sight – out of mind! We hope.

    Wheat and other grains, oats, Barley, Rice, Corn and their flours. Even gluten free varieties.

    Dairy, milk, butter, cream and ice cream, cheese and yogurt and for the first 3 weeks at least sheep and goat products as well.

    Sugar and all sweeteners except the ones on your shopping list

    Alcohol

    caffeine

    Potatoes or sweet potatoes

    soy and soya products

    all other fruit and fruit juices

    Finally gather more information and recipes and make a menu plan for a few days. If you want a cookbook Clean Eats by Alejandro Junger MD is full of great ideas and you can also find lots on the internet – try searching for wheat and dairy free or Paleo but check ingredients list against what is allowed at least in the first 2-3 weeks. if you have Autoimmune disease there are even recipes for Paleo autoimmune protocol which leaves out the nightshade vegetables. If you sign up to Pinterest you can save your favourite recipes and ideas easily. There are loads of websites and Blogs where you can get free information and recipes.

    Breakfast can be the one meal that people have the most trouble with but try to have some protein like eggs(with spinach maybe). Home-made smoothies can be a very nutritious start to the day, especially if you are in a hurry or not used to eating breakfast add a spoon of almond butter or a handful of nuts and seeds to add protein and stop you from feeling hungry by mid morning.

    You should not be hungry on this diet. It will stabilise your blood sugar. Have a few nuts and seeds (like sunflower or pumpkin) with you for if you get hungry or are late with a meal. Your lunch and dinner should be mainly vegetables or salad with maybe olive oil and lemon juice as a dressing and a medium portion of protein. If you want to stir fry it is best to use coconut oil as this stays stable at higher temperatures.

    I found that because of putting more thought into meals and food combinations I started to enjoy my meals more. Try not to concentrate on what you are not able to eat and remember that as your health starts to improve you will feel better than any “treat” made you feel!

     

  • Nutritional Medicine

    Quick Nutri-smoothie

    P1020923 Breakfast Nutri-smoothie.

    Take a selection of fresh and frozen fruits

    A Probiotic Drink

    A little fruit juice

    A dessertspoon of ground Flax seeds

    A dessertspoon of either Almond powder, Lecithin or Rice powder

    Put all ingredients into a blender and blend, adding more fruit juice until the consistency is smooth and drinkable.

    This is the quickest, most nutrious breakfast and it is delicious.P1020924

    If you grind enough Flaxseeds for a week put them into a jam jar and keep them in the fridge.

    You can also grind sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds and add a little of these.

    This is a really great breakfast for the summer and you can vary the fruits you use, try half a banana, some apple, some cinnamon and a fresh fig!

    In the winter a good substitute would be to make a puree of the fruit and ground seeds and them pour them over a nice hot bowl of porridge.