Archive for January, 2008

How You Eat, Think and Exercise Affects Your Genes (& children)!!

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 30, 2008

From Project Censored Top Stories of 2008:

# 15 Toxic Exposure Can Be Transmitted to Future Generations on a “Second Genetic Code”
Source:
Rachel’s Democracy & Health News, October 12, 2006
Title: “Some Chemicals are More Harmful Than Anyone Ever Suspected”
Author: Peter Montague
http://www.precaution.org/lib/06/ht061012.htm

Student Researchers: Kristen Kebler and Michael Januleski
Faculty Evaluator: Gary Evans, M.D.

Research suggests that, contrary to previous belief, our behavior and our environmental conditions may program sections of our children’s DNA. New evidence about how genes interact with the environment suggests that many industrial chemicals may be more ominously dangerous than previously thought. It is increasingly clear that the effects of toxic exposure may be passed on through generations, in ways that are still not fully understood. “This introduces the concept of responsibility into genetics and inheritance,” said Dr. Moshe Szyf, a researcher at McGill University in Montreal, “This may revolutionize medicine. You aren’t eating and exercising just for yourself, but for your lineage.”1
The new field of genetic research, called epigenetics, involves what scientists are referring to as a “second genetic code” which influences how genes act in the body. If DNA is the hardware of inheritance, the epigenetic system is the software. The epigenetic system determines which genes get turned “off” or “on” and how much of a certain protein they produce.
It is this switching system that allows the genetic material in each cell to influence the creation of proteins—which ones are manufactured, in what sequence, and how many. Proteins are the building blocks of our bodies. The chemicals and hormones in our bodies are proteins. They determine, in large part, how we look, how we feel, even how we act.1
Now, it seems that this chemical switching system may also act in reverse. In most cases, epigenetic changes (changes to DNA from current environmental conditions) are not passed from parents to their offspring. Scientists are still not sure how—but genes seem to be “wiped clean” after a sperm fertilizes an egg. Based on the recent data, however, researchers are intrigued by the notion that some of the genetic changes influenced by our diet, our behaviors, or our environment, may be passed on from generation to generation.
On average, 1,800 new chemicals are registered with the federal government each year and about 750 of these find their way into products, all with hardly any testing for health or environmental effects. The bad news about chemical contamination is steadily mounting, while the number of new chemicals is steadily increasing. Many critics of the chemical and pharmaceutical industries are renewing their admonitions that government agencies practice the “precautionary principle”—the rule of “do no harm first” in the approval of new drugs and chemicals.
In 2005, the European Union responded to this situation by trying to enact a new law called Registration, Evaluation and Authorization of Chemicals (REACH), which requires that chemicals be tested before they are sold—not after. As they say in Europe, “No data, no market.” At the same time, US and European chemical industries—and the White House—began working overtime to subvert the European effort to enact REACH. Their efforts failed, however, and the REACH act was adopted by the European Union in December, 2006.2 Chemical companies throughout the US and Europe are still struggling with how they will respond to the new requirements.

Citations
1. Anne McIlroy, “Chemicals and Stress Cause Gene Changes That Can Be Inherited,” Globe & Mail, March 11, 2006. See http://www.precaution.org/lib/06/prn_code_2.060311.htm.
2. “European Parliament OKs World’s Toughest Law on Toxic Chemicals,” San Francisco Chronicle, December 14, 2006.

UPDATE BY PETER MONTAGUE
Basically this story tells us that environmental influences (like our mother’s diet and her exposure to toxic chemicals) are far more important to us than anyone suspected just a decade ago.
It turns out that environmental influences shape us from the moment of conception onward, and the earliest months and years of life are the most important ones. It is called “fetal programming” and it means our first environment (the womb) can determine what sorts of diseases will afflict us later in life. Furthermore, some of these early influences can be inherited by our offspring and even by their offspring. So your personal pattern of disease may have been set by your grandmother’s diet, or by her exposure to toxicants.
These findings imply that keeping toxic industrial chemicals out of the environment is far more urgent than anyone has previously thought. With more than 1,000 chemicals presently entering commercial channels each year with almost no health or safety testing, this is not welcome news.
In May 2007, a group of two hundred scientists from five continents issued strongly worded consensus statement (the “Faroes Statement”) saying that early exposure to common chemicals leaves babies more likely to develop serious diseases later in life, including diabetes,

attention deficits, certain cancers, thyroid disorders, and obesity, among others.
Notably, the scientists urged governments not to wait for more scientific certainty but to take precautionary action now to protect fetuses and children from toxic exposures.
Most of the mainstream press continued to tiptoe around this story, with a few important exceptions, until May 2007 when the Faroes statement blew the story open. Now that it is out in the open, we’ll have to see if the mainstream press has what it takes to explain the far-reaching ramifications of these findings.
The best source of information on this topic (and many others) is http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org. Search for “epigenetics,” “fetal programming,” or “gene expression.”

e concerns, warns Parry, over how the Pentagon judges “threats” and who falls under the category of “those who would harm us.” A Pentagon official said the Counterintelligence Field Activity’s TALON program has amassed files on antiwar protesters.

In the view of some civil libertarians, a form of martial law already exists in the U.S. and has been in place since shortly after the September 11 attacks when Bush issued Military Order Number One, which empowered him to detain any noncitizen as an international terrorist or enemy combatant. Today that order extends to U.S. citizens as well.

Farrell ends her article with the conclusion that while much speculation has been generated by KBR’s contract to build huge detention centers within the U.S., “The truth is, we won’t know the real purpose of these centers unless ‘contingency plans are needed.’ And by then, it will be too late.”

UPDATE BY PETER DALE SCOTT
The contract of the Halliburton subsidiary KBR to build immigrant detention facilities is part of a longer-term Homeland Security plan titled ENDGAME, which sets as its goal the removal of “all removable aliens” and “potential terrorists.” In the 1980s Richard Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld discussed similar emergency detention powers as part of a super-secret program of planning for what was euphemistically called “Continuity of Government” (COG) in the event of a nuclear disaster. At the time, Cheney was a Wyoming congressman, while Rumsfeld, who had been defense secretary under President Ford, was a businessman and CEO of the drug company G.D. Searle.

These men planned for suspension of the Constitution, not just after nuclear attack, but for any “national security emergency,” which they defined in Executive Order 12656 of 1988 as: “Any occurrence, including natural disaster, military attack, technological or other emergency, that seriously degrades or seriously threatens the national security of the United States.” Clearly September 11 would meet this definition, and did, for COG was instituted on that day. As the Washington Post later explained, the order “dispatched a shadow government of about 100 senior civilian managers to live and work secretly outside Washington, activating for the first time long-standing plans.”

What these managers in this shadow government worked on has never been reported. But it is significant that the group that prepared ENDGAME was, as the Homeland Security document puts it, “chartered in September 2001.” For ENDGAME’s goal of a capacious detention capability is remarkably similar to Oliver North’s controversial Rex-84 “readiness exercise” for COG in 1984. This called for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to round up and detain 400,000 imaginary “refugees,” in the context of “uncontrolled population movements” over the Mexican border into the United States.

UPDATE BY MAUREEN FARRELL
When the story about Kellogg, Brown and Root’s contract for emergency detention centers broke, immigration was not the hot button issue it is today. Given this, the language in Halliburton’s press release, stating that the centers would be built in the event of an “emergency influx of immigrants into the U.S.,” raised eyebrows, especially among those familiar with Rex-84 and other Reagan-era initiatives. FEMA’s former plans ‘for the detention of at least 21 million American Negroes in assembly centers or relocation camps’ added to the distrust, and the second stated reason for the KBR contract, “to support the rapid development of new programs,” sent imaginations reeling.

While few in the mainstream media made the connection between KBR’s contract and previous programs, Fox News eventually addressed this issue, pooh-poohing concerns as the province of “conspiracy theories” and “unfounded” fears. My article attempted to sift through the speculation, focusing on verifiable information found in declassified and leaked documents which proved that, in addition to drawing up contingency plans for martial law, the government has conducted military readiness exercises designed to round up and detain both illegal aliens and U.S. citizens.
How concerned should Americans be? Recent reports are conflicting and confusing:

In May, 2006, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) began “Operation Return to Sender,” which involved catching illegal immigrants and deporting them. In June, however, President Bush vowed that there would soon be “new infrastructures” including detention centers designed to put an end to such “catch and release” practices.

Though Bush said he was “working with Congress to increase the number of detention facilities along our borders,” Rep. Bennie Thompson, ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee, said he first learned about the KBR contract through newspaper reports.

Fox News recently quoted Pepperdine University professor Doug Kmiec, who deemed detention camp concerns “more paranoia than reality” and added that KBR’s contract is most likely “something related to (Hurricane) Katrina” or “a bird flu outbreak that could spur a mass quarantine of Americans.” The president’s stated desire for the U.S. military to take a more active role during natural disasters and to enforce quarantines in the event of a bird flu outbreak, however, have been roundly denounced.

Concern over an all-powerful federal government is not paranoia, but active citizenship. As Thomas Jefferson explained, “even under the best forms of government, those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.” From John Adams’s Alien and Sedition Acts to FDR’s internment of Japanese Americans, the land of the free has held many contradictions and ironies. Interestingly enough, Halliburton was at the center of another historical controversy, when Lyndon Johnson’s ties to a little-known company named Kellogg, Brown and Root caused a congressional commotion—particularly after the Halliburton subsidiary won enough wartime contracts to become one of the first protested symbols of the military-industrial complex. Back then they were known as the “Vietnam builders.” The question, of course, is what they’ll be known as next.

Additional links:
” Reagan Aides and the Secret Government,” Miami Herald, July 5, 1987, http://fpiarticle.blogspot.com/2005/12/front-page-miami-herald-july-5-1987.html

“Foundations are in place for martial law in the US,” July 27, 2002, Sydney Morning Herald, smh.com.au/articles/2002/07/27/ 1027497418339.html

“Halliburton Deals Recall Vietnam-Era Controversy: Cheney’s Ties to Company Reminiscent of LBJ’s Relationships,” NPR, Dec. 24, 2003, http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=1569483

“Critics Fear Emergency Centers Could Be Used for Immigration Round-Ups,” Fox News, June 7, 2006, http://www.foxnews.com/ story/0,2933,198456,00.html

“U.S. officials nab 2,100 illegal immigrants in 3 weeks,” USA Today, June 14, 2006, http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-06-14-immigration-arrests_x.htm

Posted in Did You Know?, Eat, Environment, Hidden Dangers, See | Leave a Comment »

Your Drinking Water is being Polluted by Military & Corporations

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 30, 2008

From Project Censored: Top Censored Stories of 2008

# 17 Drinking Water Contaminated by Military and Corporations
Sources:
Environment News Service, March 24, 2006
Title: “Factories, Cities Across USA Exceed Water Pollution Limits”
Author: Sunny Lewis
http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/mar2006/2006-03-24-05.asp
AlterNet, August 4, 2006
Title: “Military Waste in Our Drinking Water”
Authors: Sunaura Taylor and Astor Taylor
http://www.alternet.org/envirohealth/39723/

Student Researchers: Jonathan Stoumen, Adrienne Magee, and Julie Bickel
Faculty Evaluator: Sasha Von Meier, Ph.D. and Steve Norwick, Ph.D.

Water is essential to life, contributing to blood circulation, digestion, metabolism, brain activity, and muscle movements. Yet reliably pure water is growing scarce, even in the United States. Despite the federal government’s avowed commitment “to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation’s waters,”1 corporations, municipalities, and the US military pollute our waters—often with little or no accountability.
“Polluters are using America’s waters as their dumping ground,” said US PIRG’s Clean Water Advocate Christy Leavitt. (US PIRG is the national lobby office for the state Public Interest Research Groups, nonprofit public interest advocacy organizations.) “Troubled Waters: An Analysis of Clean Water Act Compliance,” released by US PIRG in March 2006 shows that, between July 2003 and December 2004, over 62 percent of industrial and municipal facilities across the country discharged pollution into US waterways at rates above limits established by the Clear Water Act (CWA).
Using the Freedom of Information Act, US PIRG investigated major facilities’ compliance—or lack of it—with established federal limits on pollution discharges. The average facility discharged pollutants in excess of its permitted limit by over 275 percent, nearly four times the legal limit. Nationally, 436 major facilities exceeded their limits at least half of the time during the study’s timeframe. Thirty-five facilities exceeded their permits during every reporting period. Seven states allowed more than one hundred violations of at least 500 percent (Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania, New York, Tennessee, Texas, and Massachusetts). The study could not analyze facilities in California, Oregon, or Washington due to unreliable data.
Corn farming—think ethanol—is the crop most likely to leach chemical contaminants into waterways.2 Atrazine, which several European nations have banned, is an herbicide widely used in agribusiness, especially on major crops such as corn. The EPA identifies atrazine as the second-most common herbicide in drinking wells. Maximum safe levels of atrazine in drinking water are three parts per billion, but scientists have found up to 224 parts per billion in Midwestern streams, and 2,300 parts per billion in Corn Belt irrigation reservoirs.
Today more than 40 percent of US waterways are unsafe for swimming and fishing, and, as shown by the PIRG study, industrial pollution of the nation’s waters persists—despite the goals of the 1972 Clean Water Act to make all US waters safe for fishing, swimming, and other uses by 1983, and to eliminate the discharge of pollutants into waterways by 1985.
One reason for these ongoing failures is the Bush administration’s consistent efforts to shortchange the Environmental Protection Agency’s budget and to gut the Clean Water Act. In 2003, the Bush administration significantly weakened protections for small streams, wetlands, and other waters, despite Bush having declared 2002-2003 the Year of Clean Water.
However, opposition to environmental protection for clean waterways stems from not only the Bush administration but also the US military, whose pollution poisons the very citizens it is supposed to protect in the name of national security. Weapons production, by the US military and its private contractors, generates more hazardous waste annually than the five largest international chemical companies combined, accounting for one-third of the nation’s toxic waste. Furthermore, the US military is among the most frequent violators of environmental laws.
The Department of Defense (DoD) has sought and received exemptions from a number of crucial public health and environmental laws. Dramatic increases in the amounts of trichloroethylene (TCE) in public aquifers have been one fatal consequence of these exemptions. TCE, a known carcinogen, is used commercially as a solvent. It is the most widespread industrial contaminant in US drinking water. Since the Korean War, military contractors, such as Hughes Missiles Systems (purchased by Raytheon in 1997), have used TCE to degrease airplane parts, and to clean fuel lines at missile sites.
Consequently, TCE contamination is especially common around military facilities. The Pentagon is responsible for the TCE contamination of over 1,400 properties. In 2001, the EPA sought to force the government to require more thorough cleanups at military sites, by lowering the acceptable limits on TCE from five parts per billion to one part per billion. In response, the DoD joined the Department of Energy and NASA in blocking the EPA’s proposed action. The Bush administration charged the EPA with inflating TCE’s risks, and called on the National Academy of Sciences to evaluate the EPA’s claims. The Academy’s 2003 report confirmed the EPA’s assessment, linking TCE to kidney cancer, impaired neurological function, reproductive and developmental damage, autoimmune disease, and other human ailments. The Bush administration and the DoD have ignored these inconvenient findings. As a result, citizens, who pay for the military budget with their tax dollars, are also paying with their health and sometimes their lives.

Citations
1. Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 USC. 1251 et seq), Section 101(a).
2. Sasha Lilley, “Green Fuel’s Dirty Secret,” CorpWatch, June 1, 2006.

UPDATE BY SUNNY LEWIS
Compliance with the Clean Water Act on the part of industrial and municipal water facilities and land developers is of utmost importance to the quality of America’s waters—from wetlands, ponds, and small streams to mighty rivers and the Great Lakes.
The US Public Interest Research Group, US PIRG, which discovered the failure of 62 percent of facilities to comply with the law based on documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, intends to do more work on this subject later this year.
Christy Leavitt of US PIRG, quoted by ENS in the original article, says the group will issue another report based on updated figures obtained in May from the US Environmental Protection Agency.
As ENS reported, US PIRG recommended that all US waters be protected by withdrawal of what the group called “the Bush administration’s 2003 No Protection” policy which excludes many small streams and wetlands from protection under the Clean Water Act.
Since the ENS report was published, the US Supreme Court handed down a ruling on the scope of the Clean Water Act that many water and environmental experts as well as Members of Congress believe has muddied the legal waters and made new legislation necessary.
In June 2006, the high court ruled in the case Rapanos et ux., et at. v. United States that there are limits to the federal government’s authority to regulate wetlands under the Clean Water Act, but failed to agree on the confines of that power.
The consolidated case involved conflicts between developers who wanted to build condos and stores on wetlands and federal regulators, who refused to allow the developments under the authority of the Clean Water Act. The waters at issue were wetlands adjacent to ditches and drains that connected to “navigable waters” of the United States.
For a full discussion of the ruling, please see the ENS report, “US Supreme Court Decision Fails to Clarify Clean Water Act,” at http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/jun2006/2006-06-19-10.asp.
In 2001, the Supreme Court ruled in another case, Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. Corps of Engineers, SWANCC, that non-navigable, isolated, intrastate waters do not fall under the jurisdiction of the Clean Water Act.
On May 25, 2007, a bi-partisan bill was introduced in the House of Representatives that attempts to clarify the original intent of Congress in the 1972 Clean Water Act in the wake of these two decisions.
To achieve clarification, the new measure, the Clean Water Restoration Act, replaces the term “navigable waters of the United States” with the term “waters of the United States.”
The Clean Water Restoration Act has 158 original cosponsors, and the endorsement of more than three hundred organizations representing the conservation community, family farmers, fishers, surfers, boaters, faith communities, environmental justice advocates, labor unions, and civic associations.
It replaces a bill mentioned in the original ENS report, the Clean Water Authority Restoration Act, that was not approved during the 109th Congress.
As ENS reported in March 2006, US PIRG recommended that the Clean Water State Revolving Fund be fully funded to help communities upgrade their sewer systems.
The Clean Water State Revolving Loan Fund guarantees loans for cities and towns so they can borrow for sewer projects at a lower interest rate, saving local taxpayers billions of dollars nationwide.
On March 8, 2007, ENS reported that the Bush administration’s budget proposal to cut some $400 million from the Clean Water State Revolving Fund budget came under fire by members of both parties in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
On March 9, 2007, ENS reported that the US House of Representatives passed the Water Quality Financing Act of 2007. For the first time in twenty years, the measure H.R. 720, would reauthorize the Clean Water State Revolving Funds. At press time, this measure had not come before the US Senate.
For its part, the US EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, OECA, says its actions to enforce Clean Water Act requirements in FY 2006 resulted in more than 283 million pounds of pollutants reduced.
Most of these reductions are the result of the EPA’s “national priority efforts” to control overflows from combined sewer overflows and sanitary sewer overflows and contamination caused by surface runoff from stormwater and concentrated animal feeding operations, the agency said.
Working in partnership with states, OECA says it concluded major legal settlements with dozens of cities to bring critical sewer systems back into compliance.
The settlements require comprehensive plans to improve the maintenance and operation of systems to reduce overflows, and long-term capital construction projects to expand treatment capacity to ensure that sewage is properly treated before being discharged, the OECA said in the “EPA Fiscal Year 2006 Accomplishments Report.”
The settlements concluded in FY 2006 will reduce overflows of untreated or inadequately treated sewage by 26 million pounds, with an estimated investment of $930 million in sewer system upgrades and improvements.
To find out more about the scope of the Clean Water Act and compliance with this law, visit:

US Public Interest Research Group: http://www.uspirg.org/

US EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance: http://www.epa.gov/compliance/

US EPA Clean Water Act Compliance Assistance:
http://www.epa.gov/compliance/assistance/bystatute/cwa/index.html

Clean Water Act State Revolving Fund:
http://www.epa.gov/owm/cwfinance/cwsrf/index.htm

Stormwater Authority: http://www.stormwaterauthority.org

Posted in Did You Know?, Drink, Hidden Dangers | Leave a Comment »

Cell Phone Dangers: They Might Kill You

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 29, 2008

It appears that just like cigarettes and asbestos where the threat of danger from them was obvious to some very early on, but it took decades for the general public to become aware, cell phones are the next big danger. 

Cell phones appear to alter heat shock proteins (hsp) in the blood brain barrier, allowing more toxins to enter the brain. In addition, the radiation emmitted from the phone can affect normal cell functioning in the tissues near where the cell phone is (usually the ear).  The dangers do not appear to be short term – but from long term exposure. This is a new issue because cell phone use has only exploded in the last 10 yrs. And now the data coming in is showing an association with increasing tumors in those specific areas of the body.

Using the cell phone in a car or train is even more dangerous because the cell phone has to increase power each time it links to a new tower. This makes the user get even more radiation exposure.

Best thing is to get a hands free headset. Even blue tooth technology involves a small receiver so it too can expose us to the same, albeit less, radiation.

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Cocoa – Another Miracle Food!(Overeating Kills You!)

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 28, 2008

One of the serious consequences of eating too much (common in industrialized nations like the USA) is that excess calories literally clog up your body.  Called “Postprandial Oxidative Stress” it appears to affect the delicate tissues of the blood vessels, called the endothelium, the most.  This condition is associated with an increased risk of diabetes, obesity and heart disease.  Systemically the damage to blood vessels such as that which occurs from over-eating is part of what is called the aging process.

One way to reduce this dangerous effect is to simply eat less. Increasing your consumption of green vegetables and even some fruits, helps because they are nutrient and fiber dense and will serve to fill you up faster (hence lower calories). In addition, they provide key nutrients that work to prevent or stop the damage from oxidative stress such as those seen with overeating.

Scientists have observed that consuming red wine, tea and chocolate reduce the effect of over eating. Red wine and chocolate are themselves calorie rich, so the healthiest choice is tea and cocoa powder. I add organic cocoa powder to my green smoothies:

4oz water
6 oz Hemp milk
1 tablespoon coconut milk
1 tablespoon cocoa powder (non-alkalized)
1 scoop chocolate hemp protein
3 celery stalks
2 kale leaves
3 green leafy lettuce leaves
1 purple cabbage leaf
1/2 apple
1 small handful of blueberries
5 black figs
1 tablespoon lecithin
1/2 teaspoon magnesium carbonate powder
3 grams MSM powder

Lots of goodies in there! It was a little thick but tasted delicious!!

Posted in Did You Know?, Eat, Hidden Dangers | Leave a Comment »

A Day in the Life of Ginger

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 22, 2008

I was feeling a little under the weather one day. (I never get ‘sick’ but do
occasionally catch colds and flu’s – its just that since I took charge of my
health the impact these infections have on me is minimal! This is quite a change
from someone who used to be bedridden at least twice a year and had
allergies/bronchitis every spring as well!)

So when I feel I am catching a cold I load up on items that can help my immune
system work at its best. Normally I might take some colloidal silver,
Echinacea/goldenseal, and extra vitamin C. But all I had around was some organic
ginger. So all day I added ginger to whatever I ate and drank. And she was
keeping me out of bed and productive all day.

Ginger is caliente! (hot and spicy).  She is truly a miracle spice – acting as
an anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory agent. In this regard she works to aid
digestion, relieve nausea, heal ulcers, support cardiovascular health, reduce
pain and inflammation, and speed recovery from colds and flu.

My ginger orgy started off when I had my morning green tea. I boiled grated
ginger in the water and filtered the shreds as i poured the water into the cup.
Again don’t boil the ginger too long nor pour boiling water on the tea as heat
destroys nutrients.

After 20 minutes or so I make my morning smoothie. I upgraded my blender to
industrial strength since I plan on using it more and making larger quantities
of smoothies (something you might want to consider as you ease into the smoothie
lifestyle!) You know the deal here, lots of raw goodies:

•   1 head of Kale (great for balancing estrogen levels in both men and women!)
•   1 cup blueberries
•   1 handful parsley
•   2 tablespoons flax seed ground up
•   2 tablespoons organic rice protein (I like to rotate my protein sources –
whey one day, rice, and hemp etc)
•   12 oz water
•   1 tablespoon raw honey (also good when you are immune compromised, but be
careful as sugars can suppress the immune system. So only use honey with a
meal/smoothie or for a post-workout shake)
•   1 tablespoon lecithin
•   Ginger (I added the shredded ginger to my smoothie.)

After I train my morning clients, I came back home and made some more green tea,
again boiling the water with ginger. This time I take the shreds and add them to
my egg white omelet:

•   5 egg whites (don’t cook the yolk as you destroy its benefits, I eat organic
yolks raw (in a cup with a little cinnamon –taste great!)
•   handful of basil leaves
•   handful of cilantro
•   ½ cup of frozen organic broccoli
•   Ginger!
•   ½ cup of organic salsa with a teaspoon of curry added in (curry everything-
remember!). Add the salsa at the end just before serving the omelet.

I cook the omelet in a low heat stainless steel pan (Teflon will kill you). All
my food now is cooked as low heat as I can tolerate to both prevent nutrient
loss but also to inhibit cross linking of proteins. When you cook protein it
forms ‘wrinkles’ in the food that lead those same proteins when eaten to form
‘wrinkles’ on your skin and in other tissue like your heart.  You can see these
altered proteins – the brown crispy parts of the egg are those glycated or
wrinkled proteins. Brown and tough sections of chicken or well done meat (dark,
crispy) are the same thing.

For dinner I had some brown rice and chicken. Again I added some fresh ginger to
the rice, cooked the chicken in garlic, ginger and coconut oil, and added frozen
broccoli to the rice at the end (just long enough for it to soften up but not
get soggy).

My dessert was green tea and ginger ice cream. What a treat: a true fat burning
ice cream! (Green tea is clinically proven to help burn fat). All I added to the
mix was:
2 cups green tea with ginger shreds (filtered out)
½ packet of Fat Free, Sugar Free Jell-O Pudding Mix
4 teaspoons almond butter
2 cups ice
2 tablespoons flax seed (ground)

Put it in the ice cream maker and wow! What a treat! And it has no sugar, is
extremely low fat and can help your body burn fat. Now we’re talking! Normally I
would not use items with artificial sweeteners, but I made this dessert for my
clients who are overweight and for whom losing weight is the first priority.

I woke up the next day and was feeling much better – thanks to ginger!

Posted in Body, Drink, Eat, Nutrition | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Another Reason Not to Trust Drug Companies: They Hide the Truth!

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 19, 2008

Antidepressant Studies Unpublished  

from NY Times:  

The makers of antidepressants like Prozac and Paxil never published the results of about a third of the drug trials that they conducted to win government approval, misleading doctors and consumers about the drugs’ true effectiveness, a new analysis has found.

In published trials, about 60 percent of people taking the drugs report significant relief from depression, compared with roughly 40 percent of those on placebo pills. But when the less positive, unpublished trials are included, the advantage shrinks: the drugs outperform placebos, but by a modest margin, concludes the new report, which appears Thursday in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Previous research had found a similar bias toward reporting positive results for a variety of medications; and many researchers have questioned the reported effectiveness of antidepressants. But the new analysis, reviewing data from 74 trials involving 12 drugs, is the most thorough to date. And it documents a large difference: while 94 percent of the positive studies found their way into print, just 14 percent of those with disappointing or uncertain results did.

The finding is likely to inflame a continuing debate about how drug trial data is reported. In 2004, after revelations that negative findings from antidepressant trials had not been published, a group of leading journals agreed to stop publishing clinical trials that were not registered in a public database. Trade groups representing the world’s largest drug makers announced that members’ companies would begin to release more data from trials more quickly, on their own database, clinicalstudyresults.org.

And last year, Congress passed legislation that expanded the type of trials and the depth of information that must be submitted to clinicaltrials.gov, a public database operated by the National Library of Medicine. The Food and Drug Administration’s Web site provides limited access to recent reviews of drug trials, but critics say it is very hard to navigate.

“This is a very important study for two reasons,” said Dr. Jeffrey M. Drazen, editor in chief of The New England Journal. “One is that when you prescribe drugs, you want to make sure you’re working with best data possible; you wouldn’t buy a stock if you only knew a third of the truth about it.”

Second, Dr. Drazen continued, “we need to show respect for the people who enter a trial.”

“They take some risk to be in the trial, and then the drug company hides the data?” he asked. “That kind of thing gets us pretty passionate about this issue.”

Alan Goldhammer, deputy vice president for regulatory affairs at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, said the new study neglected to mention that industry and government had already taken steps to make clinical trial information more transparent. “This is all based on data from before 2004, and since then we’ve put to rest the myth that companies have anything to hide,” he said.

In the study, a team of researchers identified all antidepressant trials submitted to the Food and Drug Administration to win approval from 1987 to 2004. The studies involved 12,564 adult patients testing drugs like Prozac from Eli Lilly, Zoloft from Pfizer and Effexor from Wyeth.

The researchers obtained unpublished data on the more recently approved drugs from the F.D.A.’s Web site. For older drugs, they tracked down hard copies of unpublished studies through colleagues, or using the Freedom of Information Act. They checked all of these studies against databases of published research, and also wrote to the companies that conducted the studies to ask if specific trials had been published.

They found that 37 of 38 trials that the F.D.A. viewed as having positive results were published in journals. The agency viewed as failed or unconvincing 36 other trials, of which 14 made it into journals.

But 11 of those 14 journal articles “conveyed a positive outcome” that was not justified by the underlying F.D.A. review, said the new study’s lead author, Dr. Erick H. Turner, a psychiatrist and former F.D.A. reviewer who now works at Oregon Health and Sciences University and the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center. His co-authors included researchers at Kent State University and the University of California, Riverside.

Dr. Turner said the selective reporting of favorable studies sets up patients for disappointment. “The bottom line for people considering an antidepressant, I think, is that they should be more circumspect about taking it,” he said, “and not be so shocked if it doesn’t work the first time and think something’s wrong with them.”

For doctors, he said, “They end up asking, ‘How come these drugs seem to work so well in all these studies, and I’m not getting that response?’ ”

Dr. Thomas P. Laughren, director of the division of psychiatry products at the F.D.A., said the agency had long been aware that favorable studies of drugs were more likely to be published.

“It’s a problem we’ve been struggling with for years,” he said in an interview. “I have no problem with full access to all trial data; the question for us is how do you fit it all on a package insert,” the information that accompanies many drugs.

Dr. Donald F. Klein, an emeritus professor of psychiatry at Columbia, said drug makers were not the only ones who can be reluctant to publish unconvincing results. Journals, and study authors, too, may drop studies that are underwhelming.

“If it’s your private data, and you don’t like how it came out, well, we shouldn’t be surprised that some doctors don’t submit those studies,” he said.

Posted in Did You Know?, Doctors, Hidden Dangers, Medicine | Leave a Comment »

Food Addictions: Hidden Variable in Fat Loss

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 18, 2008

Ironically the foods that we often find ourselves craving are the same ones we are allergic to.  Even your doctor would not typically be able to discern this as they measure the common IgG response in the body to determine allergies. IgG elevation is typified by common allergy symptoms, including runny nose, red or watery eyes, etc.

Subclinical (meaning not always able to be diagnosed by a doctor in a clinical setting) allergies, like subclinical vitamin deficiences, often go untreated. In this case, a food allergy can illicit an IgE response that can lead to reactions such as headaches and weight gain.

They do this because the food triggers the allergic reaction which then releases epinepherine into the body. This is one of those ‘feel good’ chemicals and so we end up craving the very food that is bad for us!

In addition, foods like wheat and chocolate (dairy too) produce opiate like compounds in the body that also are addicting, hence we can end up craving those foods as well. Wheat in particular is riddled with so many negatives I tell all my clients to avoid wheat products as much as possible. If you must consume grains, use brown rice, quinoa, pure rye, oats, or even the new sprouted grain products (Ezekial) as they are less associated with side effects.

Top foods to avoid that produce toxic reactions in the body are wheat, sugar, soy, corn and dairy.  Learn to gradually shift your consumption of these to healthier alternatives. For sugar, naturally occurring sugars in fruits are better (I swear by apples), as is Agave, Stevia and if you must, the occassional use of Splenda (try not to).

With soy, fermented soy appears safer, so items like tempeh and tofu could be used.  The health benefits of soy are questionalbe and as I try to adopt a ‘Controversy Free’ philosophy, if there is doubt, its best to avoid it as much as possible.

For corn there are also many substitutes from other less popular grains.  Dairy can be safe if you get raw, unpastuerized but this is not easy to come by. So nut milks like almond, or even goat products appear to be less reactive in the body.

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Nutrition Program Basics

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 15, 2008

I do not recommend supplements as a way to avoid eating a healthy diet. First and most important is to get as much of your nutrition from generous amounts of raw fruits and vegetables. My guess is most people do not consume enough raw, organic fruits and vegetables, and have increased exposures to environmental toxins in food, air, house, plastics, cell phones, etc. In these cases an aggressive nutrition program can afford some increased measure of compensation.

Basic Program: This is a general basic program I would recommend*:
#1. Good Multi-Vitamin: Not Centrum or One-A-Day, but I prefer highest quality multis that are ‘food based’. Companies like New Chapter, and Rainbow Light are more expensive but far better quality than most others.
#2. Fish and/or Flax Seeds (Extra Omega 3) (also – Extra Anti-Oxidants Vitamin C and E) Omega 3 fatty acids found in fish and flax oil are so critical to health – in a nutshell – if you want to look and feel good – you need these. They make skin look healthy, help form healthy brain chemistry so you feel happy and psyched to be alive, help form hormones that give us our sex drive, and they help us burn fat and add muscle. Is that enough reason?

My first choice is to rotate your source of EFA’s, for example using a bottle of high quality fish oil and then after that turn to flax seed. I prefer whole organic flax seed that you put in a coffee grinder just before you eat it. There is some controversy about flax being inferior to fish oil, but most healthy people are able to convert flax oil into the EFAs DHA and EPA.  If you are diabetic or have insulin issues, you should lean more towards fish oil as your body might not be able to convert enough plant based EFA’s into the critically needed DHA and EPA.  Try to get a balance of Omega 3 to Omega 6 of around 1:3. You will need to increase your intake of anti-oxidants to keep the Omega 3 in your body working properly.

Anti-Oxidants (Vit C, E, A): 2,000 to 5,000 mg Vitamin C spaced out during the day, along with Mixed Tocopherols (Not just Vitamin E, but Alpha, beta and delta and gamma Tocopherols too.) Don’t get DL-Alpha Tocopherol, it’s the synthetic version and is molecularly different than natural vitamin E (D-Alpha Tocopherol). Go for 400-1200 iu Mixed Tocopherols per day. This extra anti-oxidant protection is crucial to good health. Same for Vitamin A – get mixed carotenes and not just the popular beta-carotene.

3) Magnesium: Studies show most people are deficient in magnesium. Its critical for so many bodily functions, to help us relax, muscle contraction, blood flow, the list goes on and on. Do not take magnesium oxide, this is a rip-off. Try for amino-acid chelates instead. (400-800 mg daily)
#4. Whey Protein (and Lecithin) – If you exercise or want to reduce carb and fat calories, extra protein is beneficial. Protein actually can help us lose fat, as does healthy omega 3 fats! Whey protein is one of the best types, and is also shown to boost the immune system. Lecithin has a role in most all bodily processes including nerve transmission, energy production and breathing. Our brains are about 30% Lecithin. Nerves are insulated by lecithin, and the heart has high amounts as well. 

#5. MSM (or a Green Juice Powder): MSN (methyl sulfonal methane) is a great all-round supplement or if you feel the need for Greens – a powdered concentrate is great.  Greens have chlorophyll, that is high in magnesium and also helps pull out toxic heavy metals like aluminum and mercury! For joints and arthritis – I prefer MSM over Glucosamine sulfate as the life extensionists have reported glucosamine sulfate can accelerate advanced glycation end-products (AGE’s). These make you age faster! Not good. Stick with MSM in 1,500-3,000 mg/day and chondroitan sulfate if you want at 300 mg and up per day. These are good for joints, and can assist in growing new cartilage. That’s right- your doctor is wrong – you can grow new cartilage. Agents like SAMe are especially good for this, but at higher doses are quite expensive.

Other items: (Depends on your goals)

#6. ALA, ALCAR : Great for energy and anti-aging and brain function. In whatever dose you can afford, but at least 100 mg. ALA, 500 -1,500 mg. ALCAR. The R-ALA form is reputed to be the best form. These work on anti-aging, insulin function, brain function and fat burning – important for everyone. You can also use CoQ10 and/or Idebenone instead of ALA.

#7. Resveratrol, Carnosine, NAC, Green Tea, and depending on what your goals are: certain amino-acids and herbs in high quantities can facilitate your success. Carnosine is anti-aging, NAC is great for the liver (if you drink alcohol!),  I recommend the cycling of nutrients according to needs – for example, for weight loss – a top goal for many – items like Green Tea, ALA, CLA and Omega 3 fats. After that then I can shift to other agents – like anti-oxidants for example. More on this in the next article.

#8. Pro-biotics: Healthy gut flora is critical.

#9. Iodine: Lugols solution for many reasons (see my iodine post)

#10. Digestive Enzymes: helps assimilate food and lessen work of GI tract in digestion.

Posted in Nutrition, Supplements | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Nutrition: Your Only Hope

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 15, 2008

Summary: In an increasingly contaminated environment our exposure to known and unknown toxins has increased significantly. This has resulted in an increasing array of health (physical and emotional)problems, many of which in all probabililty affect you right now. Increasing nutrition in the body is the only way to help our bodies compensate and effectively remove these poisons before they cause serious harm. Children especially need to have proper nutrition since they are more sensitive to toxins than adults.

Face it, many things we do are unhealthy, even without our knowing it. Exposure to environmental toxins, pesticides and now other chemicals such as plastic compounds in our food, stress, and poor nutrition all take a toll. All produce chemical ‘scars’ (wounds)such as free radical damage, on our bodies. We age faster, gain fat easier and look older sooner. Every day a new company is admitting it sold products that it knew were dangerous, such as Merck and Pfizer selling dangerous drugs like Vioxx and Celebrex, or Dupont that knew its plastics were toxic in their no-stick cookware.

Most of us do not see just how much a threat toxins are to us and especially our children. Children are more sensitive and can pick up toxins from seemingly safe items such as the floors in your house: Walking in the house with shoes leads to increased levels of petroleum based toxins on the floors and carpets that kids get on their hands, and since their hands go into their mouths often – they ingest these toxins.
Nutrition is a compensation factor for all the other unhealthy things we do. Nutrients detoxify the liver, slow free radical damage, facilitate normal functioning of various systems, like our immune system, and in men for example- the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Testicular-Axis (HPTA). They maintain cell membrane integrity and assist in receptor viability. The list goes on and on, detoxification, sex drive, brain chemistry (mental state), are all affected by these natural substances.

The medical model of nutrition is extremely antiquated. I audited a nutrition class for medical students at New York Medical College, and found it lacking scientific validity. How ironic, the teacher (a Physician (a man of science)) is unaware that the themselves show how incredible and effective nutrition and natural compounds really are. The medical model states that all you need is the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of nutrients – the amount to prevent a “disease of deficiency” for that particular nutrient. So for example, Vitamin C, the RDA is 60 mg. (milligrams). This amount prevents most people from getting scurvy – the disease you get with low Vitamin C levels. It does not optimize health.

And to many, nutrition and supplements are fake and don’t really have any effect. Granted some supplements are hyped up and claims overstated, such as the anti-aging ‘GH’ pills and many of the “Viagra” type products on the market. And the scammers of Enron can be found in this and any industry also. But in truth many herbs and nutrients are very powerful. In fact about 40% of all medications are derived from plants. If you doubt this, do a search on any nutrient you choose on Medline or ChemAbstracts databases. You’ll be surprised at the thousands of scientific studies showing that nutrients are powerful.

So what do you want: to prevent scurvy or maximize your health? Many studies done on farm animals and lab animals(because animals are a business for which maximizing profit is important) show that high levels of nutrients make them healthier, live longer and get less disease. Studies on people also show that most of us are sub-clinically malnourished, we get enough nutrition to not get acute sickness, but not to be healthy. So which do you want – the Medical Model or the Scientific Model? Remember too that disease is how medical and pharmaceutical professionals earn a living. A little conflict of interest here? And we all know how easily people are swayed – just look at the headlines, or look at the Tobacco industry. I often joke that “M.D” stands for “Manage Disease”!

Are Naturalists Who Shun Supplements Correct?
Many health gurus believe that food gives us all the nutrients we need. I disagree. First off, naturally we were designed to live to only about 30-40 years of age. So our bodies did not evolve to require long term nutrition status for maximum longevity. Our bodies evolved to make babies and die by 30 or 40. Living to 80 or more requires a different perspective. Living to 80 or more and having the vitality of a 40 yr old requires an even more cutting-edge perspective. Also our food is not near as healthy as when we were all natural. Food now is processed, heated, cooked, stored etc. all of which depletes nutrition content of the foods. On top of that, we consume much higher (unnatural amounts) of sugar, unhealthy fats, and chemicals not normally found in food, such as xenoestrogens (which mimic estrogen in our bodies with unhealthy results). Every day the list of exposures grows: lipstick & cosmetics, plastics used for water and food, cell phones are just a few.

So, under scrutiny, the natural perspective does not hold up as valid. Unless you wish to die young. And according to the latest research, even 80 is young. People who eat healthy, exercise and take supplements are pushing the boundaries of our idea on aging – we will see more healthy and young looking 80-100 yr old’s in the near future according to researchers. So, optimal levels of Vitamin C are above 1,000 mg per day. Perhaps as high as 5,000 to 10,000 mg. Most primates (our closest relatives) consume 5,000+ mg per day of Vitamin C for example. The list goes on and on, Vitamin A, all B Vitamins, D, E, and so on. And then we have the newest area where other important plant based nutrients are now being discovered. This is the cutting edge for health conscious, anti-aging, and sports performance people. Alpha lipoic acid, grape seed extract, resveratrol, bioflavinoids, flavones, MSN, amino-acid therapies, herbal extracts like green tea.

Nutrition Science: One Example 

Let’s take one nutrient and look at what it does. Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is a key anti-oxidant because it acts on both water and fat soluble reactions to stop free radical proliferation. Even more critical is that ALA acts at the mitochondria(1). In order to burn fats and carbohydrates to give us energy, mitochondria take electrons from oxygen and shuffle them among a suite of molecules in a complex chain reaction. Invariably, some of the electrons get misplaced, creating free radicals. Mitochondria produce more oxidants than any other single site in a cell, the main offenders being superoxide, hydrogen peroxide, and hydroxyl radicals. Even worse, unlike DNA in the nucleus, there are no repair mechanisms for mitochondria DNA. This is why many experts think aging and disease begins here, in the mitochondria. This is why ALA is so important! It works at a key area of free radical damage, and it also assists in the metabolism of fats and carbs! In a sense, free radicals are like an engine overheating- and anti-oxidants like ALA act as a cooling system to keep the engine running stronger! ALA also increases the number of Glut-4 receptors on the cell membrane, specifically muscle cells. What does this mean to you? This increases the ability of glucose to be driven into muscle cells instead of fat cells, hence a partioning effect. ALA in doses of 300mg up to 1200 mg are well tolerated and effective.

How good is ALA? In fact Nestle Corporation is applying for a patent on a combination of nutrients to slow aging. And they are both critical mitochondria DNA repair agents: ALA and Acetyl-L-Carnitine(ALCAR). ALCAR is another key nutrient for many aspects. ALCAR has been shown to increase IGF levels(2). It also can reverse DNA damage in the mitochondria(3). When rats, and humans are stressed, cortisol levels rise, and Testosterone drops! This change in hormone levels is what leads to disease and aging. Yet even under stress, which reduced Testosterone levels, ALCAR kept them up(4). It can also have a positive effect on the testes(5) , aiding older men and bodybuilders in post cycle recovery. ALCAR is effective at doses of 1,000mg to 10,000 mg (taken on an empty stomach or with juice.) Dr. Bruce Ames made these two agents famous in his research showing that their combination was a key to slowing down and reversing many effects of aging!

References:
1.Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 2002 Jul 1;182(1):84-90. Antioxidant and prooxidant activities of alpha-lipoic acid and dihydrolipoic acid. Moini H, Packer L, Saris NE.
2.Acetyl-L-carnitine administration increases insulin-like growth factor 1 levels in asymptomatic HIV-1-infected subjects: correlation with its suppressive effect on lymphocyte apoptosis and ceramide generation. Di Marzio L, Moretti S, D’Alo S, Zazzeroni F, Marcellini S, Smacchia C, Alesse E, Cifone MG, De Simone C. Department of Experimental Medicine, University of L’Aquila, L’Aquila, Italy
3.Mitochondrial decay in aging. Reversal through supplementation of acetyl-L-carnitine and N-tert-butyl-alpha-phenyl-nitrone. Hagen TM, Wehr CM, Ames BN. Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California at Berkeley 94720, USA.
4.Effect of different chronic intermittent stressors and acetyl-l-carnitine on hypothalamic beta-endorphin and GnRH and on plasma testosterone levels in male rats. Bidzinska B, Petraglia F, Angioni S, Genazzani AD, Criscuolo M, Ficarra G, Gallinelli A, Trentini GP, Genazzani AR. Department of Endocrinology, Medical School of Wroclaw, Poland.
5. The effect of L-acetylcarnitine on some reproductive functions in the oligoasthenospermic rat. Palmero S, Leone M, Prati M, Costa M, Messeni Leone M, Fugassa E, De Cecco L. Istituto di Fisiologia Generale, Universita di Genova, Italy.

Posted in Body, Detox, Did You Know?, Environment, Hidden Dangers, Nutrition, Supplements | Leave a Comment »

The Medical Holocaust

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 15, 2008

The Medical Holocaust?This is not my term ,but was coined by a major health & wellness advocate, Burton Goldberg. Burton was the publisher and founder of Alternative Medicine Press, who still run a major magazine and several best-selling health books. I’ve talked to him myself, and his concern over the lives of all people is very genuine. He states what many others state as well: Medicine is the leading cause of death in the country.Read that again: Doctors, Drugs and Hospitals are the leading cause of death in the country. In fact, recently even more researchers have also called it a ‘Medical Holocaust’, others the “Dark Ages” of medicine. This is from a variety of sources, so it’s well established. (Read here for one source.)  The current editor of Alternative Medicine Magazine had this to say about the dangers of modern medicine. Modern medicine is based on managing disease, not on making you healthy. Financial interests have biased the science medicine rests its reputation on.

You need to take more control of your health, wellness and fitness because our medical system is not ‘Health Care”, but “Disease Care”. Progressive doctors, such as Dr. Andrew Weil, and Dr. Perricone, author of bestsellers “The Wrinkle Cure” and “The Brain Beauty Connection”, advocate a healthy diet, exercise, stress management and nutritional supplements. Progressive organizations like Life Extension, whose board is full of researchers with “MD, PhD”, and Cenegenics Institute, advocate the same thing.

One area that is perhaps new to many is the “generous use of nutritional supplements”. Generous use of nutritional supplements is recommended for those of us who: 1) Don’t have the best diet and exercise programs, or have the time for these. 2) Want to compensate for vices, such as sugar, alcohol, stress, coffee, smoking etc 3) Want to achieve their goals faster (fat loss, anti-aging, disease prevention etc.) 4) Need therapeutic treatment for certain conditions, or to therapeutically correct years of poor diet and exercise.

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Sick of being Sick?

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 15, 2008

I am sitting here eating an amazing dinner that took me 15 minutes to make and I realize this is why I never get sick. Its so easy to eat healthy with simple, quick meals that no one has any excuse. 

I used to get sick all the time – every year whatever was going around, I would catch it. A cold, flu and then bronchitis or allergies in the spring as well.  Yearly! I was raised on ring dings and pixie sticks (not Dixie Chicks, that would have been much better for me!). So its quite a result that now its been over 15 years and I still have not been sick. I know I have caught the cold or flu – I can feel my body fighting it for a few hours, and then its gone! Simply amazing that an unhealthy child like myself can reverse some of the damage and see a measurable increase in health.

Whats for dinner? Grass fed bison steak – served rare – the blood is still oozing from it. It is so delicious I am eating it with absolutely no seasoning! Its amazing to get back to basics and appreciate the connection with primal foods that our ancestors ate.  We’re all so disconnected from reality – buying packaged meats in supermarkets that erase any connection with the living being that they once were.   Along with the bison is soup – I get an organic, low sodium soup and add the following miracle foods:

Garlic (2-3 cloves, chopped)
Ginger (as much as possible but start out with a 2″ x 1″ chuck and chop it!)
Broccoli (1 or 2 cups)
Curry (spice) (I add curry to as many foods as I can – salsa, guacamole, soups, hummus) – Add 1 teaspoon here.

This particular recipe for soup will increase your immune function and keep you from getting sick. If you are sickly – you should aim for having this at least 5 times a week. Change it up – tonite it was Butternut Squash soup, next time it will be Ginger Carrot, or Lentil, or Split pea.

The key is to cook it on low flame so the nutrients in the food do not get destroyed!  All these idiots sauteing garlic in olive oil etc – destroying most of the benefits in eating it (except for the taste).  Heating the soup on low flame for 12-15 minutes will take the edge off the garlic and ginger but still retain much of their immune boosting properties!

Got it?

Posted in Eat, See | Leave a Comment »

The Power of Now

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 14, 2008

Summary: Nothing can give you more rewards in life than to “practice presence” – to be fully conscious in each and every moment.

There is a knowledge that is beyond words, and words are the only mode of communication to get you to understand the ‘knowing’ that is beyond words. Osho said “The Truth cannot be said”, and when you understand the Truth, you realize there is only One  – One Truth, One God, etc – all, poor words to describe that which is beyond words. Beyond thinking.

Ironically the Truth is so simple, every human being is born with the ability to choose it.  Choosing Truth (God, whatever word you wish to use) is a moment to moment choice each of us makes. Its the Power of Now. It only requires that we wake up, come aware of the present. For in the present is a PRESENCE, I cannot put it in words, for you become aware of it only when the mind has been stilled (“Be still, and know that I am God“) – but it is there and its that timeless, eternal awareness of, well, to wrap it in feel good language – its the presence of God.

Practice Presence and your life will change in ways you can not even imagine now!

Posted in Did You Know?, See, Spirit | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Build Muscle, Burn Fat – Sleeping?

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 13, 2008

Build Muscle – Burn Fat: Sleeping!

That title is not in error, it is possible to use sleep to your advantage in building a great body. Besides being healthy for a variety of reasons, sleep offers us an opportunity to enhance recovery, stimulate anabolic hormones such as growth hormone (GH), and to increase fat loss.
Why Sleep?
First off, why do we need sleep? Current ideas focus on sleep being essential for neurons and the associated chemistry (neuronal biochemistry such as neurotransmitters) to regenerate. Most of this activity is going on in the brain. So we need sleep because our brains need to regenerate. Memory, learning and social processes are cycled and rejuvenated during sleep. Sleep enables the brain to encode new information and store it properly. REM sleep activates the parts of the brain that control learning.

In addition, the nervous system and immune system are being viewed as one system, so sleep is also essential for optimal immune function. In case you didn’t realize this – everything about you, from your ‘self’ and personality, to mood swings, hormone levels, sexual desire, intelligence, etc are all centered around your brain. You literally are your brain. So saying that its vital to take care of this organ is an understatement.

As a side note, in grad school at New York Medical College, I did my thesis on brain function and nutrition, and I can assure you, brain chemistry, and how it affects all aspects of ‘you’ are sensitive to changes in nutrient intake, and to items like sleep.

As a Health & Fitness Trainer for http://www.MyHealthExperts.com (and Equinox ) I consult with many bodybuilders and athletes, and a common statement is “I work hard and I play hard.” Yet when it comes to health, they often have a lackluster response such as, “everything in moderation.” Where is their logic? Living today requires that we compensate hard as well. Compensate for all the stress working and playing hard produce. And the only way to compensate is to focus on being healthy. Being healthy is the core of everything, the foundation upon which everything you value is built upon. And part of being healthy is getting adequate sleep. This usually is between 7-8 hours for most people.

Contrary to popular belief, you cannot catch up on sleep by sleeping extra on the weekends. You may be so fatigued that you need more sleep, but you are not making up for the lost sleep on other days. Studies also show that those going on 4-5 hrs of sleep a night can have as much cognitive impairment as someone who was awake for 3 days straight! What’s more interesting is that these people often do not even realize their loss of mental function. We all know how bad it feels to have residual fatigue from not sleeping enough the night before – it affects everything from your workouts, to your mood.

Hormonal Hazards:Good sleep enhances the release of growth hormone, a critical hormone for a number of physiologic processes, including building muscle and burning fat. Eating before bed may inhibit growth hormone release, so if you need to eat, be sure to have no carbs at the very least. Drinking a protein flax oil shake may be the best as it is easily assimilated. Even better might be to take 20 grams of BCAA’s along with 5 grams of taurine. This will help mitigate nighttime catabolism and still not effect GH release. Plus taurine is great as a mild sleep aid.Eating before bed also inhibits Phase II detoxification in the liver. Phase I liver detoxification includes filtering and the Cytochrome P450 enzymes.  Phase II involves conjugation. Conjugation is where various enzymes in the liver attach protective compounds to toxins.  This either neutralizes the toxin or makes the toxin more easily excreted. Phase I and II work together so that both need to be working properly. Proper liver detoxification is especially critical for the prevention of cancers.This is even more dangerous to bodybuilders as steroids and high-protein diets activate Phase I detox, and eating before bed inhibits Phase II thus leaving dangerous carcinogens (cancer causing agents) lingering in the body longer. Therefore consider cycling periods of eating before bed with periods of not allowing maximal liver activity.

Good sleep elevates Leptin and suppresses Ghrelin, two key hormones affecting appetite and hunger. Leptin is a hormone produced by fat cells that tells the brain energy levels are high, so appetite is suppressed. Ghrelin is a hormone made in the stomach that stimulates hunger and appetite. Eating a meal suppresses ghrelin and increases leptin, thereby suppressing hunger. Recent evidence suggests that losing sleep causes subjects to become more hungry and eat more by elevating ghrelin and decreasing leptin. Not the ideal situation for losing weight.

Other hormones are also affected by sleep. One hormone that is elevated when we don’t sleep well is cortisol. This catabolic hormone is a bodybuilders nemesis, so missing sleep may catabolize (cause a net loss of) prescious muscle tissue. Making matters worse, TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) is a hormone released by the pituitary to control thyroid output and metabolism, is reduced during sleep deprivation.

Many men snore and think it’s normal. It may be an indication of low testosterone levels. Sleep apnea is a respiratory disorder that affects 4%-9% of adult males. Its most common manifestation is loud snoring and it may occur several hundred times throughout the night, resulting in sleep fragmentation and excessive daytime sleepiness. A recent study found that nearly half the subjects who suffered from severe sleep apnea also secreted abnormally low levels of testosterone throughout the night.

Do you need more Sleep?Consider the following questions:Do you sleep extra hours on the weekend?Do you need an alarm clock to wake up on time?

Do your eyelids feel heavy during afternoon classes or meetings?

Do you use caffeine as to stay awake or alert?

If you answer yes to any of the above, you’re probably not getting adequate amounts of sleep. Try to focus on getting 7-8 hours a night for 2 months and see if you notice any improvements.

Our bodies have a natural sleep cycle that is optimal when sleeping from 10 pm to about 6 am. Try to get to bed at least prior to midnight. Be sure to sleep in a dark environment with no noise. Any light hitting the retina will inhibit stimulation of the pineal gland and as such a critical hormone called melatonin is inhibited. Melatonin is important for many functions, for example, it turns on the gene known as p53 that stops cancer cells from growing.

If you have problems sleeping, consider taurine (1000-3000 mg), magnesium (400-800 mg), and even glycine (2000 mg). Recent evidence suggests an herbal ingredient known as THP is also clinically effective in treating insomnia. It’s so potent is was recently patented. Only one product has this; its called Eden PM and its available at Sleep.KiloHealth.com

Sleep, along with diet, exercise and nutritional supplementation, is a cornerstone of optimal health. Don’t neglect it!

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Born Again My Ass!

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 13, 2008

Summary: Awareness, Being, or being ‘born again’ is a moment to moment choice that each of us make every moment whether we realize it or not. And by default, when we dont choose, the choice is darkness, or the Dark Side (even it appears as good!).

I have to laugh at “President” Bush claiming he is born again. Perhaps he was at the time of the interview, but he is so obviously lost again, and again, and again. And if he was born again, please – no more! Once is enough as the earth can only support one despotic president! But I digress, all these so called born agains – you can tell who is really living in the light. He or she is not thumping any bible nor telling you how wrong you are. These are the dark side born agains and its so obvious their passion comes not from Love, but from fear. And as Yoda said, “Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hatred, and hatred leads to the darkside.”

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Celery- Sexy?

Posted by myhealthexperts on January 13, 2008

My clients know I am big on daily celery use in my smoothies. This is for many reasons, celery contains anti-cancer compounds called coumarins. Coumarins also enhance activity of immune related white blood cells. Celery also has 3nB -a potent coumarin compound that can lower blood pressure.  But primarliy I like celery because it contains androsterone, an odorless hormone released through male perspiration that turns women on. (Women are very sensitive to pheromones!)

Hmmm Good!

Banannas are also a good food here (I limit their use because of their high sugar content) because they have the enzyme bromelain which is purported to increase libido in men (I am not sure on this ‘claim’ so don’t quote me!).

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