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Sunday, August 5, 2012

Gone Grain Free and the 17 Day Diet

Ok so by default I have gone grain free. This is probably the best thing I have ever done and the best adjustment to my diet I have ever made. Ok I lie I have had the occasional gluten free oatmeal. I do not have Celiac but I do have some sort of wheat allergy that causes me to rash, so I know that the possibility is there that it could get worse.

I recently decided to do the 17 day diet. This diet is pretty good and does promote a grain free diet at least for the first 2-3 phases. In phase 4 or the maintenance phase you can add in all the foods you used to eat within reason. They really encourage no carbs after 2pm, and they encourage unprocessed home-cooked meals. Eating out really makes it hard to stick to this diet.

Yeah and alcohol is carbs people no matter how you shake it(or pour it!) it is restricted at least in phases 1 and 2(accelerate and activate). Then in phase 3 (Achieve)you can have a wine in place of a, before 2pm?? HMMMM how does that work???


I am currently alcohol free. I will be starting another blog with the main theme of why alcohol is one of the worst, most numbing,and depressive drugs around. And they say that marijuana is a gateway drug. I've seen just as much or more damage from alcohol. My mother, aunt, and grandfather were all raging alcoholics. I truely believe that even though my mom was a recovering alcoholic for 38 years that it still killed her from a distance so to speak. I participated in sponsoring alcoholics with my my mom who worked the AA 12 step program, was in alanon, and was an alateen sponsor. I will be posting my new blog from this blog when it is set up! Click Here!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Take The First Step to......

Really want to get healthy? I mean really??? Are you sure? How determined are you? Do talk to yourself about getting started on a healthy lifestyle and maybe losing weight but never really pick up the ball and run with it? Do know how to start?  What is motivating you?  Do you have a family history of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure or some other debilitating disease that is motivating you to attack  your weight or lifestyle??   Are you realizing that somewhere down the line your lifestyle habits will affect the quality of your life when you are older??  Do want to set a good example for your children, see them grow up, watch your grandchildren graduate from high school....etc???? Honestly answer these questions to yourself!! America is getting fatter and fatter and fatter, so......
Here are a couple of things to watch:

Fat Sick and Nearly Dead
Super Size It
The Weight of the Nation  This one especially!

Everyone should watch "The Weight of the Nation." This film is really educates about how we as a nation got where we are today and how it will affect the next generation. If you have all ready seen any of these documentaries, please comment!

Health in America....the obesity epidemic is just devastating us as a race! Although it started rather started.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Yoga Yoga Yoga

So......hello to everyone. It has been some time since I posted so just to update everyone, I have been very busy!  On the health scene I have been exploring yoga!  Specifically Bikram, but I would like to explore other types as well. Damn that room is hot!  Anyone like to comment on their experience with hot yoga??? I would love to hear what you think and any benefits you have had from your practice.  My verdict is not in yet. I know that when I come out of that room I feel drained and can barely move for a few minutes. As I come out of the room and look around me I see that everyone else seems to have the same reaction.

If you are unfamiliar with Bikram Yoga. It consists of 26 poses in a room heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit at 40% humidity for 90 minutes! Whew.....But for some reason, I keep going back?????

Stephanie McDaniel

Real Estate Consultant

HomeLife Results Realty



Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Going Grain Free- Be A Caveman

Heard of the Paleo movement, or grain free living?

I have been experimenting with this phenomemon because I know that I am allergic to something but don't know what exactly. I believe that many of our ailments are food based. Problems such as obesity, diabetes, IBS, celiac disease, skin rashes, hormonal problems and probably dozens of other health problems can be attributed to what we put in our body. Our society has put processed food on the frontline, and more people die in America due to obesity than famine. Very sad, since so many other countries are starving to death.

I believe that nutrition should be a required course starting in elementary school! Ok, off my soapbox!
About going grain free... this is what it consists of and why it works.
NO flour or grains and that includes all kinds of flour. Here is what you can eat-------

•Nuts and Seeds
NO soy or dairy. Although I do a little goatcheese

Excuse me but do you see, pasta, corn tortillas, or even rice!? This lifestyle is also gluten free so if you have a gluten allergy you are good to go! If you are trying to reduce your size this is definitely for you! A few people include things such as buckwheat and quinoa in the diet but a true paleo diet does not include these pseudo- grains. Make no mistake no grain enthusiasts are not Atkin's lover's, in fact they promote very small amounts of animal protein while encouraging lots of veggies, nuts, seeds, and small amounts of fruit if you need to be careful of your sugar intake. Of course meat and eggs should be grassfed and organic.  I am including a couple of websites with more of the science and some recipes if you are interested. The biggest improvement I have noticed is my energy levels have improved, my blood sugar is stable, and I have less aches and pain. Grains are related to imflammation as you will discover. This diet originates from the thought that we should eat more like our paleolithic ancestors before processed food existed.  They just were not into cupcakes and bialy's back then..yep not discovered yet.  Check these sights out if you want to learn more and improve your health for the better!    (for recipes)
Here are some grain free pancakes!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Why are baby teeth so important???

Wanted to address something with all you  new mom's and dad's out there. As you all probably already know I am a Registered Dental Hygienist by profession and have been practicing for 20 years. In all those years one of the most common statements I hear from parents  when told that their 5 year old has mulitple cavities is , "Well it doesn't matter because the baby teeth will just fall out anyway!"

Your baby's teeth
Well guess what, it does matter! Without the baby(deciduous teeth) there is nothing there to hold the place(or position) for the permanent teeth to erupt. Kids lose their last baby tooth at about 12. So, if your child loses those teeth too early and the space is not held by a space maintaining device until the permanent tooth is developed and ready to erupt, the permanant tooth can become impacted or come in just wrong......(malpositioned or crooked)

Unfortunately to fix the result of early loss of baby teeth, it can cost money, extra time at the dental office,  more pain and discomfort for your child, and extra time in orthodontics when the child gets older. So, the bottom line is maintain your baby's mouth. Take them to the dentist early(by 3 yrs old) and regularly(every 6 months). Brush their teeth twice a day, and floss( yes floss!)once per day.  Limit sugar, juice, junk food ,and take away the bottle during the night(water is ok). Take away the binky as soon as you can as this can alter jaw development, and speech development. According to pediatricians, at 18 months the pacifier and the bottle should be gone altogether. To many it may seem difficult to take away your baby's bottle and pacifier because it is a comfort for them and easier for you, but in the long run you will be helping them tremendously and they will be thanking you later. I promise.
Adult teeth

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Coke, Dr. Pepper, Pepsi, Mountain Dew, etc…..

Diet and regular sodas have been associated with kidney damage, cancer, obesity, diabetes in adults and kids, and regular soda has even been linked to high blood pressure. Soda has also been linked with pancreatic cancer, now that is scary! According to the American Association of Cancer Research as little as 2 sodas a week can raise your risk for pancreatic cancer by 90%, those are not good odds!

Soda in general contains sugar (or with diet a sugar substitute), Phosphoric Acid, flavoring, caffeine (or not), sometimes citric acid. The amount of phosphoric acid and caffeine in the soda can leach calcium from your bones and cause osteoporosis.

Soda has an acid Ph and our blood is naturally slightly salty or alkaline. So, you can see that drinking excessive amounts of soda would cause an extreme imbalance. Common sense says that anything that will melt corrosion off your car battery probably isn't good for your body! Water is sounding better and better>>>>>!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Still Hungry?

This sun has nothing to do with leptin,
I just like the pic!
Do you know anyone that can eat a whole pizza, chase with beer, and still be hungry for ice cream? If that person is overweight it may be because their leptin receptors are down. The more fat we have on our bodies the more leptin we are supposed to secrete. Leptin is the hormone that signals our hypothalamus that we are full and to stop eating and start burning fuel. This would make you think the more fat, the more leptin, the better! But, what really happens is similiar to diabetes. Just like insulin receptors, the leptin recepters function less efficiently when there is too much leptin. The process is very similiar to how insulin receptors do not let insulin communicate with our cells to use the sugar in our food for fuel, instead the receptors are bombarded and so they shut down. As a result an overweight person's body(hypothalamus regulates hunger and metablolism) is not telling him/her to stop eating. Like Type 2 diabetes losing weight, eating right, and exercising can reduce fat cells, therefore reduce the amount of leptin produced to a normal amount, therfore reversing leptin resistance.


My Food Diary


Is all caffeine the same or is it different depending on where it comes from? That is the question my husband posed to me the other day and I decided to find out. According to my research all caffeine is the same. It is a chemical compound that is mostly found in plants, but can be produced in a lab just as easily. The only difference is that some plants have more caffeine than others. I know, a lot of you are saying, "Well, duh, I knew that!" But did you know that green tea actually has more caffeine in it than regular coffee by dry weight? It does, but we get less out of it because we only steep it for a few minutes and the servings are usually much smaller.

The main reason we experience such a wide range of effects with the caffeine in different plants is because other plants can "also contain widely varying mixtures of other xanthine alkaloids, including the cardiac stimulants theophylline and theobromine, and other substances such as polyphenols that can form insoluble complexes with caffeine." (Balentine D. A) This could be why we are more addicted to the caffeine found in coffee and not so much the caffeine found in weaker teas.

Since this is a chemical, albeit a natural one, it is still considered a psychoactive drug and it would be best to not consume it. (Yes, I know that research has shown that it is harmless in moderation, even over a long period of time, but it is still a CHEMICAL that you are putting in your body!) If you are struggling with fatigue and rely on caffeine to get you through the day then you need to find out what is wrong with your body. If you are getting enough sleep, exercising and eating a whole foods diet you shouldn't need caffeine just to stay awake. If you are still tired then you should look into finding out why because another health problem could be the cause.

In my case, for instance, I am taking a liver detox supplement and by just doing that my energy has increased exponentially. I'm still tired by the end of the day like a normal person but I am finding it easier to wake up in the mornings and after I work out and eat a healthy breakfast I feel energized instead of wanting to go back to bed.

Balentine D. A., Harbowy M. E. and Graham H. N. (1998). G Spiller. ed. Tea: the Plant and its Manufacture; Chemistry and Consumption of the Beverage.
Via Wikipedia.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Deadly Choking Game that Teens Play

So while I am on the subject.......Here is a common game young teens play that involves no drugs but is very deadly. Another party gig that my teen has informed me of is the "choking" game. The kids actually do this at parties for fun. The kids actually have another kid cut off their oxygen until they pass out in order to get a high! Many kids play the game because there are no drugs involved, so they think its ok. The choking game is extremely dangerous, deadly, and always kills brain cells. What is really scarey is that once they get hooked on the game, they start playing it alone. Many times they hang themselves because there is no one there to help them when they pass out. Here is some good video and audio of a real case of "choking gone wrong."

If you have children or teens, please read and watch!

If you didn't catch this on the news last night, please watch the video. I believe you need flash player to view the video so it may not be available if you are using a mobile device, but definitely worth watching. Teens today are using and abusing prescription drugs and it's becoming increasingly more popular. I personally have a sixteen year old girl that has mentioned on numerous occasions that when she has been together with friends she has had the opportunity to partake in illegal prescription drug use. Thankfully she has not done this to date. However there are teens out there stealing their parents prescription drugs, then selling them, or giving them to their friends at parties. Please do not think that your kid is not, or will not be exposed to these drugs because they will at some point. It is important that you educate them on what is out there and the potiential consequences of experimenting with these drugs or acts for whatever reason, whether it is out of curiosity or just to be cool. Here is the video.....

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

My Alternative Medicine Experience

Yesterday I went to see a doctor who specializes in alternative medicine. After reading Dr. Mark Hyman's book (The Ultramind Solution) I had a good idea of what I needed to do. I was hoping that this doctor could reaffirm the concerns that I had and could help me move forward. He did.

The first thing we talked about was my bipolar medication. I am currently on Wellbutrin XL, Lamictal, and Abilify. My main concern in seeing him was the fact that my pharmacy had told me that the Abilify could cause diabetes. He said the reason for that is because Abilify increases your appetite and causes you to crave sweets and carbs (wow, he was right about that). He also said that Abilify was a very aggressive anti-psychotic and that if my bipolar symptoms were not that severe he wasn't sure whether or not they were necessary. He also said that Wellbutrin is pretty benign and that is probably why I was put on Lamictal because it was not working. The Lamictal then made me really restless and anxious so they put me on Abilify. This is a problem that most people with depression experience. They put you on one med and in order to counter it's side effects they put you on another med and so on and so forth. Before you know it you are taking 5 or 6 different things and not feeling any better. I was there at one point and am fortunate to only be on 3 different things right now. However, there is mounting evidence that anti-depressants don't work and that they usually only make things worse. (Which is why there are suicide warning lables on anti-depressants)

This doctor suggested that I work with my psychiatrist to slowly (and he emphasized slowly) wean myself off the medication. He said that if I quit cold turkey I might feel better at first, but then I would crash and could have a major crisis.

The doctor also mentioned that I should try supplements as I wean myself off the medication. He gave me a plan to follow and said that there was no harm in the supplements he was giving me being mixed with my meds. He said once I was off my meds if I needed more help with the depression then I could try neurofeedback. Neurofeedback and brain mapping, "...uses computerized EEG technology to identify areas of dysfunction in the brain and then trains the brain to correct them." ( He said there was a lot of evidence towards it's success and it was best to do it when I was off the meds otherwise the results won't be as easy to distinguish.

Another problem I had come to see him about was my constant fatigue. I go to bed early and when I wake up I don't feel rested and a few hours after getting up I feel exhausted. He said that it could be my liver that needs to detox. He gave me a supplement to try and told me that in his experience, and in the experience of many of his colleagues, a lot of physical problems lie in the liver. He said once doctors start paying attention to the liver a lot of problems can me solved. Here is an interesting article written on Dr. Sandra Cabot's website (she is the one who created the supplement he gave me).

So, I will start taking his supplements and see how I feel. He warned me that it might be a process. I might not feel perfect at first because my body will be detoxing a lot of waste and the plan he put together me may not be exactly right for me. So I will keep everyone posted on my progress. Oh and by the way, he also recommended a gluten free, dairy free diet with lots of protein, vegetables and good fats. More on that to come.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Red Rasberry Ketones

If you watched Dr. Oz yesterday(2/6/2012) you probably heard about "Red Rasberry Ketones." The RRK supplement is supposed to make your body "think thin." Here is a video that explains the science, seems the whole red rasberry ketone trick has been around for awhile!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Why Antioxidants? What are they anyway?

The most important antioxidants are vitamens C, E, Bioflavenoids, and Betacarotene. Anitoxidents can be found in fruits, vegetable, oils(olive oil, or sesame seed is the best), seeds, and nuts. In the majority of articles read although meat has some antioxidant properties, most of those properties can be found in other foods....that's why a mostly vegetarian diet is highly recommended. More about what meat does during digestion later(its not good). Antioxidants are said to be free radical scavengers in that they go around completing those outer shell electrons and in the process they have the ability to stay stable themselves, thus reducing the amount of free floating radicals in our bodies. Tissue saved!

 Another important factor about free radicals is that free radicals are a natural part of our immune system.  Free radicals attack viruses and illnesses, its when there are too many that our tissues and organs are damaged. My Food Diary

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Free Radicals? Can Cost us our health.

Free radicals are not exactly free, except that they are free to roam around our bodies and reek havoc. Free Radicals are caused by many things, some natural and some from environmental factors. The environmental factors are the causes we need to exert some control over because of the long term consequences. Many of us expose ourselves to too much radiation(sun), pesticides, cigarettes, alcohol and other heavy metal toxins on a daily basis.
Here is the simplified explanation without too much biology. The molecules in our cells are held together by the bonding of atoms.  Molecules are atoms that fit together like a puzzle and complete each other(see picture). When the electrons in the outer shell of an atom become weak and let go of the electron that completes its shell, it causes the atom to look for another electron to complete the circle, and to make it stable again.When the outer shell of an otherwise stable molecule is broken, it is called a free radical. Many times in order to complete the circle of electrons it breaks apart another atom's outer shell trying to snag that electron that it needs. When this happens again and again, it  causes a snowball effect, lots of broken bonds, hence more free radicals. Can you see how if free radical damage is allowed to continue the damage to our cells and tissue could be extensive and ongoing? We do have a weapon against free radicals, but that is another blog!  Tomorrow, how antioxidants can help......yay! Click here to read more.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Are all Calories Created Equal?

So, what is a calorie? Are fat calories equal to carbohydrate calories? Nope, not the same!

A calorie by definition is the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water by 1 degree celsius from an initial temperature(just leave it at that, it gets complicated), at 1 atmosphere pressure. Here is a link if you want more splaining!

Ok so that's the science of it. Bottom line, that heat is expended in energy by our body at a certain rate ... sometimes fast...sometimes slow, but generally the faster the better.  To burn calories faster we have to move! Thats a blog for another day.

Today I just want to talk about fat calories vs. carbohydrate and protein calories. Many of todays diets are based on how many grams of fat we should have daily(about 30%) and how many grams of carbohydrate and protein we should consume daily .  For instance a gram of fat has 9 calories, whereas a gram of protein or carbohydrate only has 4 calories. In case your interested alcohol has 7 calories per gram. So, if you are reading a label on the back of a packaged food, it really helps to know how to calculate how much of that food's calorie make up comes from fat, that is if you are watching your fat grams, which I believe we all should. When you are looking at a label just multiply the number of fat grams by 9 and you will know how many calories are from fat.. On this label it comes out to 108 which is not what is stated on the label....hmmmm. Why is that you ask? Because according to the FDA they don't have to be exact on the labeling, they are allowed to "round it off." So when something  says O grams of fat, it's not necessarily so. If you want to know the exact rules you can go to the FDA website here.  Happy label reading! My Food Diary

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Bison? Tastes just like chicken!

Ok so it doesn't take like chicken....It tastes a lot like beef,
 has more iron than beef, and less fat and cholesterol than chicken..
Those Chik-fil-A cows should be saying "EAT MORE BISON."

 Bison, by nature beats out pork and salmon as well when it comes to fat, calories,
and cholesterol. Bison is a wild animal and feeds on wild grains and grass, 
so it's  never given antibiotics or growth hormones.

Contrary to popular belief a bison is not a buffalo. The main bison population exists primarly in North America. Whereas the two main Buffalo species reside in  Africa and Asia, they are the African cape buffalo and the Asian water buffalo.
Bison are called "buffalo" casually  because they resemble one another and are from the same family, but there are distinct differences as you can see in the pictures. The National Bison Association encourages the term "bison" to differentiate between what is considered the American Buffalo(bison) and the true Buffalo. For more information about bison in America, how it is manufactured, nutrition, and how to prepare click on this link.



The UltraMind Solution by Dr. Mark Hyman

In the last post I mentioned a young journalist who dealt with bipolar and how he overcame it. He reccomended several books on the topic of how nutrition can effect your symptoms. One of these was "The UltraMind Solution" by Dr. Mark Hyman. The journalist mentioned how if you don't read anything else, you should read this book because it will change your life. So, I got the book, read it, and I have to agree with him. It is a true eye opener.
The book not only talks about how nutrition and certain supplements can help your body, but he gets specific. He gives case studies as examples in almost every chapter about clients who come in and are over weight, tired, and suffer from some mental health issue that often included depression, early dementia, alzheimers and even autism. He goes over their treatment plan and then discusses in the book the reasoning behind it and how it can help you. He gives you health "quizzes" so you can see what areas you are deficient in. Some of these include inflammation, zinc, magnesium, hormones, and thryroid. He makes the case for the fact that many of our physical ailments all stem from an "inflammed brain" that we have aquired through unhealthy eating and the exposure to environmental toxins. He even gives you a solid plan on how to get your body back to its balanced normal self. He also offers advice on supplements and why they are important (mainly because no matter how good we eat we are still not getting all of the vitamins we need). Another great thing about this book is that he offers a 183 page companion guide for free off his website.

There are so many things I can talk about when it comes to this book and I will attempt to discuss a few of them (like how our gut is our second brain and why conventional medicine doesn't work). In the meantime, I strongly suggest that you buy this book and read it. If you are skeptical you can find the book on Amazon and read the first few chapters. Trust me, you'll be hooked!

How I overcame bipolar by Michael Ellsberg.

Before I became a contributing writer for this blog I posted a comment about a very interesting article I read. Since it was only posted as a comment I will re-type my information here. The article was from the Forbes website and was written by the journalist, Michael Ellsberg. It was about his personal struggle with bipolar depression and his attempt to live with it. Like many people struggling with depression and its debilitating symptoms Michael did everything conventional medicine told him to do. He went to therapy, saw a psychiatrist, and took his medicine like a good boy. Unfortunately this was not working for him. Again he experienced what many people with this "disease" experience, horrible side effects and meds that weren't working. So, he tried the vitamin route. Soon he was taking so many supplements and vitamins that he began to loose his libido (which we know, for men, this can be awful)! Since this wasn't working the way he wanted he decided to go see a doctor who dealt in functional medicine. It was important to him that his doctor "sweated through medical school" and could understand both conventional medicine and alternative medicine. The doctor he went to ran some tests and found out that Michael was very sensitive to sugar. When he ate it he experienced a high and eventually crashed into a deep depression. The doctor advised him to cut out coffee, proccesed sugar, and alcohol. Michael thought that the good doctor was crazy and decided that his treatment plan was not going to work. Eventually, though, Michael came very close to suicidal and it was then that he realized that maybe the doctor was on to something. So he cut out the before mentioned foods and voila! His symptoms disappered!
The great thing about this article is that it gives someone like me, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, hope. I want to share this with you in hopes that if you know someone who is not only dealing with bipolar, but depression, anxiety, or any other mental health issue that you can be encouraged that there is another way. You don't have to spend money on anti-depressants and other meds that don't work. (By the way, more and more studies are showing that anti-depressant medication does not work and the manufacturers of these meds have hidden the case studies to prove it.)
Here is his article. Warning: It is kinda long and has a few cuss words, so don't be offended.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Organic Wine. How Exactly is it Different?

Organic wines are made from organic grapes. No pesticides or preservatives are used in their production! Sulfites are a naturally occurring preservative in wine so all wine has some sulfites. Wine that is not organic and has added perservative, about 10-20 times the sulfites as organically produced wine.
Red wine doesn’t need sulfites, rose and white need more, and sweet wines have the most. Many people claim that red wine causes less headache and this could be the reason why.  Sulfites have a reputation for aggravating an asthma condition and many people are allergic.  You can find a few different brands of organic wine at your health food store and maybe even at the local grocer if it's a bit upscale. Organic wine is more popular in Europe but is growing in popularity here in the United States.  Of course because organic wine is expensive to produce the majority of wineries shy away. It is currently thought by wine enthusiasts that the production of organic wine will grow in popularity as a niche of its own.  So, if you’ve never tried organic wine, give it a whirl! Once you’ve tried it you may never go back……………. I looked around and found this online wine company click right here to check it out!

Friday, January 27, 2012

The Case For Pie.........

"When the moon hits your eye
like a big pizza pie, that's amore
When the world starts to shine like you've had too much wine,
that's amore"........Lyrics by Harry Warren and Jack Brooks

So, last night we were so bad! We had pizza, typically associated with cheese, pepperoni, and hand tossed tomatoey crust. Here is a picture of the pretty pie. It was delicious and well worth the extra gym time! We tried to order healthy by getting thin and crispy crust which cut calories by about 150 calories per serving equaling about 1/4 of the pie. For toppings we opted for grilled chicken, jalepeno slices, red peppers, and spinach only on one side for my non-spinach eaters. The total calories for one serving came out to about 295 if you stick to 1/4 of the pie, which of course I did not(never, not happening). Of course there was mozzerella cheese and grilled chicken so 15 grams of fat, or 125 calories is about right. Carbohydrates were not as bad as I thought, about 29 grams or 116 calories altogether.  Protein came up dead  last with 15 grams, or 52 calories. Of course I had to entertain the thought, where do they get their chicken?  Is it organic? To calculate nutritional info on your Domino's pizza click on How bad did I destroy my diet last night? 

You can also check out ingredients in the crust and I have to tell you folks it comes under the processed food category. The crust has hydrogenated oils, soy( not all soy is created equal, its complicated), and dextrose(aww sugar, sugar).

All in all I have to commend Domino's for being up front and providing the means to calculate the nutritional value of their food.  Thank you Domino's for yummy pizza and a your calorie calculator!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What is the Gycemic Index of a food and how does it affect us?

The glycemic index is a number between 1 and 100 used to rank carbohydrates on how much they raise blood sugar after being eaten.  If the number is over 55, the food is considered,”high glycemic.”  Foods that are quickly digested and absorbed cause more fluctuations in blood sugar and insulin levels. Low Glycemic foods cause a gradual rise in blood sugar and insulin level promoting a healthy weight by decreasing food cravings. No sudden blood sugar drop means no sudden uncontrollable need for food. Low GI diets reduce overall insulin levels and insulin resistence. This is a real plus for diabetics. Here is a link for more information about Glycemic Index.     Glycemic Index Info

So, what this means to me is that if we adjust our diet by taking out some of the simple sugars like candy, white flour, white rice, white potatoes(mainly the fried ones), and processed foods we could reduce our “glycemic index,” significantly.  And, remember alcohol(darn it!) is a sugar too.
Also what about “hidden sugars,”like dextrose, fructose, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup, sorbitol, fruit juice concentrate, mannitol ,galactose, lactose, polydextrose,  maltodextrin. There are just so darn many of them!  Rule of thumb-  if a premade or processed food has more than 3 ingredients(and one is sugar), or less than 4 grams of fiber then we should just walk on by………..

Oh yeah and how about those commercials that try make high fructose corn syrup Ok……not.

More about Hidden Sugars

For a Glycemic Index Table Click Here

The Amazing Properties of Coconut Oil.

Dr. Mercola posted on a website (which I will comment on more's amazing...but I digress) a wonderful article about the many benefits of coconut oil and the reason why it is a better choice among other oils.  Even though it is a saturated fat it is a natural one.  One that our body desperately needs.

You see, we as a society have been trained to believe that "saturated" fats are bad for us and, yes, the manufactured ones are.  These oils are hydrogenated which means that they have been heated to a certain temperature and made to be a thick, rancid oil that is only conducive to shelf food that is often processed and packaged.  These manufactured fats are also called "trans" fats.  No doubt you have heard a lot about these and why they are detrimental to your health.  The conclusion made by the medical community that is wholly agreed upon is that many vegetable and seed oils that are saturated by artificial means are bad for you.  Unfortunately, there have been some other trans fats that have been exclaimed to be "healthy" and "heart friendly" by the same companies that produce the unhealthy saturated fats.  See where I'm going here?  It is all about the money for these people.

So saturated fats have become banned in most states and because of the research involving it most people are scared away from it, and rightly so.  However, the air needs to be cleared on the fact that not all saturated fats are equal.  The one we want to discuss today is the oil from coconuts.  The reason this saturated fat is good for you is because it was created naturally. 

Over many years research has been done on the cultures of tropical communities that have coconut rich diets.  You know what they found?  That those whose diets consisted of coconuts were found to have a lesser chance of cardiovascular diseases.

The following are some benefits of coconut oil (taken directly from Dr. Mercola's article)

1.  Promotes heart health
2.  Promotes weight loss
3.  Supports your immune system
4.  Supports a healthy metabolism
5.  Provides you with an immediate energy source.
6.  Keeps your skin healthy and youthful looking
7.  Supports the proper functioning of your thyroid gland.

Dr. Mercola goes on to discuss each of these benefits in more detail so I won't bore you with my rendition.  Please read his article and find out how coconut oil can really make a difference in your life.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Kombuchu Tea

Store bought Kombuchu, My homeade brew
Kombuchu tea is a probiotic food that contains bacteria which benefits the immune system and the digestive system. The health benefits of Kombuchu tea include a detox effect as well as immune system boost. The natural fermentation process of the tea also brews a little alcohol....a very very trace amount, so don't get excited!  Many people that consume the tea regularly claim more clarity, energy, and a general feeling of well being.

Little Scoby Shroons
Kombuchu tea generally begins from a big pancake referred to the mother or a scoby. The scoby is the starter and looks somewhat like a grey spongy mushroom. The mushroom consists of a symbionic colony of bacteria and yeast. To brew the scoby black or green tea is brewed, then mixed with sugar, allowed to cool, a little white vineger is added (acetic acid), pure water, and then "scoby" is added. The glass or ceramic container is covered with cheesecloth, put in a temperature controled dark place, and allowed to "brew" for 10 to 20 days. The yeast in the scoby feeds off the sugar which makes the healing probiotics and voila Kombuchu! The longer the tea brews the stronger it will be. The tea will often taste tart, tangy, mildly vinegary, and carbonated. Another great benefit is that it can be flavored after brewing is done.

Matt this is for you.

Any thoughts?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Buckwheat Honey

This morning while watching the health portion of the news there was a story about the homeopathic benefits of Buckwheat Honey. The mom of a 3 year old little girl said she didn't like using OTC drugs for her baby girl for cold symptoms because of the side affects.  She did have, however, much success with buckwheat honey. The recommended dosage was half a tsp. 3 times a day. Honey of any kind is not recommended for kids under 1 year old! It can cause infant botulism, a type of food poisening, which can result in death.

With a little research I found that the dark buckwheat honey had proven to to have wound healing properties as well as being antiviral. I also learned that it should be a dark purple in color. If it's too light it means the bees fed on too many "other plants" and the healing properties could be diluted. Therefore, you should try to get it straight from the hive (not pasteurized). This honey is made by bees that collect pollen and nectar from the tiny pink flowers of the common buckwheat plant. The botanical name is “Fagopyrum esculentum." An added advantage is that buckwheat, in general, is wheat and gluten free!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Why Nutrition?

Hi to all,

Well I've wanted to start this blog for a long time and now I am finally doing it! I sincerely hope that people will join in. This blog is intended encourage people who are trying to lead a healthy lifestyle. Many of us don't realize how important it is to give our bodies the right nutrients until we feel sick or even worse become extremely ill. Many times poor nutrition not only affects our body but also our mood, how other people perceive us, and in the case of overweight our ability to find work or even have relationships. So, how we take care of ourselves really affects every aspect of our life. I would like to read about other peoples stories, book reviews, recipes------------anything you want to talk about!

On another note (I don't want to ruffle any feathers) the more I learn about what alcohol does to our bodies, the more I want to never drink again. I know that is a strong statement. I enjoy a great glass of red just like so many but I do it less and less. That is something I will be discussing here on the blog and I invite your comments and stories.

Toodles for today