• Health/ Healthy Food/ Nutritional Medicine

    The 7 BAD Foods Sabotaging your Health

    Bad Foods

    Which 7 Bad foods are lurking in your kitchen that sabotage your health?

    1. GLUTEN and wheat  in particular causes raised blood sugar, inflammation, inflammatory bowel disease, other digestive problems (see Post on Leaky gut), blocks the absorption of minerals and leads to anaemia and mineral deficiency, may be contaminated with Glyphosate (Roundup) and can cause neurological damage. Just to name a few reasons why this food can damage you health. See below for some books that have been written on all these subjects. The Paleo Diet, Gaps Diet, SCD diet are all aimed at cutting out grains that contain gluten, phytates and lectins that can seriously damage your health.
    2. SOY PRODUCTS (non-fermented) over 90% are Genetically Modified, contain phytoestrogens and have been linked to fertility problems, breast Cancer and infant birth defects, thyroid disorders and brain damage; contains anti-nutrients that block mineral absorption, can cause red blood cells to clump together increasing danger of heart attacks and Strokes and limiting the oxygenation of tissues; can cause severe allergy; due to processing can contain high levels of non organic aluminium. Soy lecithin is now often substituted with sunflower lecithin in products. Fermented soy products, on the other hand, can be good for you – Miso, Soy sauce, Tamari, & Tempeh.
    3. MARGARINE, HYDROGENATED FATS, TRANS-FATS AND VEGETABLE OILS, soya bean oil, corn oil, Canola – that have been changed due to high heat processing and solvents cause severe inflammation and damage to cell membranes. Directly contribute to heart attacks. They also upset the balance of  healthy omega 3 fats. Healthy fat replacements are coconut oil, Olive oil, Avocados, butter (from grass fed cows) and ghee.
    4. SKIMMED MILK, HIGHLY PROCESSED MILK PRODUCTS  like ‘yogurts’ that contain no live culture and have been thickened, coloured and sweetened & other bought dairy desserts, mousses, etc. Processed cheese that may have added emulsifiers, saturated vegetable oils, salt, sugar, colour and flavouring and that doesn’t melt when heated (think what that does to your arteries!)
    5. SUGAR, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, ENERGY & SPORTS DRINKS cause inflammation; raises Triglyceride’s, make complex compounds, called AGE’s, when mixed with proteins either in food during processing or in your body that cause oxidation – which leads to weight gain, faster ageing, Diabetes, heart disease, Cancer, Alzheimer’s disease etc. Also avoid artificial sweeteners unless diabetic when Stevia, Glycyrrhizin, Mannitol and Isomalt may be some of the safer ones. Check out how sugar fuels cancer at www.thetruthaboutcancer.com
    6. LOW FAT FOODS because most of them have replaced the fat with sugar, thickeners, and other junk ingredients to make them taste better. Check out “Cholesterol is no longer the bad guy!” Post for more information.
    7. HIGHLY PROCESSED FOODS & SNACKS with unrecognisable ingredients and additives. Stick with fruit, nuts, vegetables in their natural state where you know what you are getting. Get into the habit of reading labels, it can be horrifying at first and you may feel you need a chemistry degree but it is worth it for your long-term health.

    SO TAKE ACTION

     – clear out those kitchen cupboards and clean up your body – give it what it needs,

    wholesome, fresh food!

    Image courtesy of Apolonia at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

  • Exclusion diet/ Food intolerance/ Health/ Immune system - healing/ Inflammation/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Food Intolerance symptoms and tests.

    Food Intolerance Test

    There has been a lot of controversy over food intolerance over the last few years and the distinction between true food allergies and food intolerance is still a very blurred line for many.

    Food Intolerance symptoms can be bloating, tiredness, constipation, diarrhoea, IBS, Eczema, arthritis, headaches and migraines, palpitations, mood swings and attention problems.

    On visiting your Doctor and saying that you think you may have a food intolerance he may tell you that the best way forward is to carry out a exclusion diet where if you leave out the offending foods and your symptoms go away then you have nailed it. If pressured the Doctor may send you for allergy testing. This is usually a history of your symptoms followed by a skin prick test for the substances  suspected as causing problems plus non food ones like grasses and pollens plus a control to show that you have a strong histamine response. This test is relying on a IgE immune response which would occur almost immediately with the release of inflammatory chemicals like histamine and leucotrene and can result in raised blisters, itching and even breathing difficulties or collapse. This is an allergic reaction. Food allergies are a reaction to food proteins and can be described as IgE -mediated (immediate) and non-IgE-mediated (delayed reactions).

    Delayed immune reactions to food and antigens are mediated by IgG, IgA and IgM and can take several hours or days to produce a response in the body. Celiac Disease is a non-IgE related response. Other food intolerance tests like York Laboratories, IgG RAST /ELISA and Food Detective rely on IgG immunoglobulin and a blood sample is necessary. They do not cause a histamine reaction. Recent research from the National University Hospital in Singapore has shown that the IgG response may even be protective against the development of a more severe IgE food allergy. These tests have been ignored by mainstream doctors for many years but have proved increasingly popular by patients who don’t feel they are getting to the root of their health problems. It is true that they may not show up all your intolerances as the tests are based on raw foods but we have known for 30+ years that people can react much more to processed foods. Processing food by heating and oxidisation changes the protein. If a person is reacting to tomato ketchup he may not show an immune response to  tomato and therefore the patients problem would go undetected.

    An article from The National Centre for Biotechnology Information in 2009 concluded that the determination of food allergy, intolerance and sensitivity would be improved by testing IgE, IgG, IgA and IgM antibodies against both raw and processed food antigens. Antibodies from modified food may cause disruption in degenerative and autoimmune diseases such as diabetes, atherosclerosis, joint inflammation, neuro-degeneration and neuro-autoimmunity.

    This is exactly what the Functional medicine community has been saying for a few years now – delayed Food sensitivity is associated with a multitude of chronic disorders, such as MS, Autism, RA, fibromyalgia, IBS, Crohn’s disease, Dementia and hundreds of other conditions that affect about 40% of the population.

    My son has an Autoimmune condition that affects his eyes, his digestive tract, his skin and his joints. He had eczema from about 11 years old but when he had severe gastroenteritis and couldn’t eat for 5 days his skin cleared up completely. On pointing this out to the Doctor we asked if we could have an allergy test done. While waiting for the appointment we tried an Elimination diet and filled in a detailed food diary. He definitely reacted to Dairy and soya and an improvement was seen but this is a difficult diet to do, especially when the reaction can come hours or days later. The offending proteins can also come in ways other than food, like in medicines (even the capsules that contain them), toiletries etc. When he had the skin prick IgE tests they came up negative and he also showed a very low histamine response so they said he was unlikely to be allergic to anything. We introduced more foods but remained off dairy but he was still getting quite severe inflammation. A year on we both tried the   Clean Gut Diet by Alejandro Junger, MD and started taking Probiotics and all symptoms went away within days. We also lost over 14lbs each without ever being hungry and we had much more energy. We realised that gluten was also a problem and eliminated that. We substituted Almond milk for cows milk we found great tasting bars that had only fruit and cashew nuts and we even added back in wine and gluten free beer and we still felt good and maintained our weight.

    Then gradually my son’s eczema started to come back and he had occasional flare ups of arthritis. Our only options seemed to be to go back onto the full Elimination diet or pay for a Food Intolerance test. We bought the Food Detective from bodykind and the results were very helpful and made sense. Luckily it didn’t throw up a whole new lot of foods to avoid but apart from Cow’s milk and gluten it showed a response to almonds and cashews. This is hardly surprising as these were foods that he had hardly ever consumed in the past but was now eating nearly every day. We have left them off and his inflammation is already reduced after just 3 days. We will leave them off for about 3 months and then eat them less frequently and see how he goes but the test was definitely the quickest way  and we saw results very quickly – evidence based medicine!

    I would recommend this Food Intolerance  test to anyone who thinks they can cope with collecting a small amount of blood from a finger prick and following the instructions to the letter. The test costs £65/$110/85 euros and takes about 40 mins to do with the results at the end of the test. It tests for the IgG reaction to 59 different foods and there is a video on the bodykind site that shows you exactly what to do. There is also a booklet that tells you how to interpret the results and how to proceed with dietary changes.

    Click here to visit bodykind


  • Nutritional Medicine

    HEAL YOURSELF – Body and Mind

    Fatigue

    HEAL YOUR BODY. Whether you have a diagnosed chronic disease or just a lot of irritating symptoms that impact on your quality of life – take action now and know that there is so much you can do to HEAL YOURSELF.

     

    MAIN CAUSES OF ILL HEALTH

    STRESS    *    TOXINS   *     INFLAMMATION   *    INADEQUATE DIET   *    MEDICATIONS

    WHAT MAKES US ILL

    STRESS – Poor work/relaxation ratio, poor sleep quality, high work stress, money worries, personal stress, relationships, caring for elderly/sick relatives, Bereavement, Divorce, conflict……….

    TOXINS – in food, air, water, personal care products, cleaning products, smoke, air fresheners, insecticides, plastics (like BPA, isocyanates in polyurethanes and foams), Heavy metals, Formaldehyde, fire retardants just to name a few.

    INFLAMMATION – chronic inflammation such as IBS, Colitis, Joint pain, skin problems, infections, indigestion, inflammation of blood vessels, nerves, organs.

    INADEQUATE DIET – with not enough nutrients to facilitate a normal immune system, detoxification and healing.

    MEDICATIONS – Prescription drugs given longterm to treat many of the above but that have side effects that can add to the disease process. NSAID’S (anti-inflammatory drugs), Antibiotics, Antacids (from indigestion medicine to Proton pump inhibitors like Omeprazole and Lansoprazole), Diurectics, Blood pressure medications, and Statins.

    TAKE ACTION and realise that FOOD is your first and best medicine.

    • DIET – follow the guidelines in this blog. Start with a CLEANSE for at least 2 weeks and then add in nuts, eggs and  some starches according to your own reactions. The goal is to find the most nutritionally high, personal diet that works best for you. Don’t concentrate on what you are leaving out but on improving the level of nutrition while removing triggers of inflammation.
    • INFLAMMATION – HEAL YOUR GUT. This is the most important thing you need to do, even if you don’t have gut or digestive tract symptoms this is the place where you have to improve function and start to heal your immune system. Include plenty of healing anti-inflammatory foods and oils that contain Omega-9 fatty acids (Olive Oil, Canola, grape-seed oil and sunflower oils, many nuts and seeds, avocados, poultry)and Omega-3 fatty acids (flaxseed, Canola, walnuts, and fatty fish such as Herring, mackerel, salmon, sardines, tuna and trout).
    • As digestive problems are the most common that impact your life and lead to chronic disease and long-term drug use I highly recommend you read how to take control of your symptoms from this article by Dr. Chris Kresser.
    • images (1)olive oil
    •  GET RID OF ANY HIDDEN INFECTIONS – there are plenty of natural anti-microbial products out there  and these are some that can counteract bacteria, viruses and yeasts. Tea tree oil, Olive leaf, Oregano, cinnamon oil, garlic, Black Walnut, Cloves, Barberry Root (Berberis), Oregon Grape root, Goldenseal, Wormwood, grapefruit seed extract, Probiotics, lime juice and honey.
    • REDUCE TOXIC LOAD / Exposure – from chemicals, smoke, insecticides, toiletries, make up, cleaning products, air fresheners and plastics.
    • TAKE SUPPLEMENTS – to ensure that the body has everything it needs to heal. Vitamin A and Vitamin D3, Vitamin C, Vitamin B Complex, Probiotics (especially Saccharomyces Boulardii, L-Glutamine, Omega 3 (EPA and DHA fatty acids) and Omega 9 oils. Depending on the severity of your illness you may also need extra help with detoxification with supplements like Organic sulphur(MSM), Alpha Lipoic Acid, N Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) that help the production of Glutathione, Chlorella and Milk Thistle. If digestion is poor – Digestive enzymes.
    • CORRECT ANY HORMONAL IMBALANCES – specific to symptoms – Thyroid, Adrenals, Thymus and Pancreas.
    • STRESS – last but not least make sure you get to relax at some point every day, try to manage stress, guilt, negative feelings and move towards contentment and happiness in whatever way you can.

    These are general recommendations but if you are taking other medications, have bleeding from your digestive tract, are pregnant or breastfeeding you should get advice from your Pharmacist or Doctor.

    I use Bodykind for nearly all my supplements as they stock a large range of good quality quality supplements with frequent special offers. Click below

    Click here to visit bodykind

  • Autoimmune diseases/ Nutritional Medicine

    HEALING YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM

    Healing your immune system

    A Guide to healing your immune system.

    There is an epidemic of Chronic ill health and Autoimmune diseases that equals the epidemic of cancer at present and Doctors have been struggling to cope.

    The range of these diseases starts with annoying symptoms of skin problems,poor digestion, food sensitivities, Allergies, Joint pains, IBS, Irritable bladder, hormone problems and brain fog to incapacitating problems like Multiple Sclerosis, Lupus, ME, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Autism and Alzheimer’s.

    The latest research that links all of these is that an imbalance of gut bacteria and damage to the lining of the gut. When the gut is healthy it can keep out external triggers but when it is damaged and the delicate balance of bacteria is upset it can lead to all kinds of symptoms and to autoimmunity, where the body attacks it’s own tissue and not just invading organisms.

    There are many things that can attack and lead to a breakdown in our gut lining, chronic use of anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s) Antibiotics, Chemotherapy, Radiation treatment, Alcohol, poor diet, acute or chronic stress, environmental toxins and food toxins like gluten and sugar.

    So treatment begins with removing the harmful triggers, healing the gut with diet and supplements, making sure you are free from infection and parasites and then supporting the body back to an energised and healthy state.

    If you want to feel well again then start eliminating the triggers, changing your diet and lifestyle and working your way back to vibrant health.

    If you start from

    1. Leaky Gut – do the quiz then go to
    2. Healing your digestive tract
    3. Clean Gut and extra supplements
    4. Help with your detox diet 1 – Sugar
    5. Help with your detox diet 2 – Meal Planning

    Also you can find more information on You Tube, blogs and from fantastic on-line Summits like The Autoimmune Summit with Dr. Amy Myers

    You can start feeling considerably better within two weeks of starting – as we did. If you do please share your progress with us all in comments.

  • Autoimmune diseases/ Immune system - healing/ Integrated Medicine/ Nutritional Medicine/ Wheat and Dairy Intolerance

    Leaky Gut – Quiz and Video

    Or to use the Medical term “Intestinal permeability” is being researched all over the world. There is a Leaky Gut Quiz and Video link on this post to help understand the condition. Leaky Gut is a condition where some of the tight junctions in your intestines become faulty and foreign particles that should have been eliminated  leak through into your body and cause an immune response,  inflammation and trigger chronic disease. The symptoms can vary depending on where the particles end up and can affect your digestive system, your skin, your nervous system and your hormonal system, Thyroid and Adrenal Glands. Leaky gut can caused or be made worse by infections like Candida, Clostridium Difficile (C Diff ) or others, Parasites or antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs like NSAID’s, Alcohol and food intolerances.

    Hippocrates is quoted as saying “that all disease begins in the gut” so that is where we are going to start, even if you do not have much in the way of gut symptoms. 30% of people with Leaky Gut do not have gut symptoms.

    As a fast and interesting way to start I would like to suggest that you try this Quiz to how likely it is that you have a Leaky Gut.

    The next post will be about how to set about healing your gut by diet, supplements and lifestyle changes so if you want help in learning how to heal yourself then follow my blog and I will do my best to help you through it and to better health by using all the best resources available.

    If you would like a more in-depth description of Leaky Gut then please click to watch this 5 min You Tube video by Dr Hugh Wegworth

    Leaky Gut