How to Choose a Good Supplement

Purchasing a well balanced multivitamin can be quite a daunting process. I have stared at the supplement aisle completely frozen with indecision many times, often too embarrassed to ask for help. I wasn't even sure what sort of criteria to look for ... price, packaging, label, company, etc. Have you asked yourself on what basis you should buy a multivitamin?  Here are a few major tips I have learned through my micro nutrients class. Remember expensive supplements are not necessarily better! 1.Natural vs Synthetic When you see the word "natural" on a bottle it typically means that there are no questionable additives like food coloring, tar, corn starch, or sugar. The term natural refers to the fact that the supplement does not contain other unnatural ingredients. Here, there is a difference. Supplements that are not labeled natural may also include coal tars, artificial coloring, preservatives, sugars, starch, and sometimes other additives.   The Real [...]

December 9th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , |4 Comments

Are Antioxidants Secretly Saving Your Life?

As the number of degenerative diseases is on the rise so is the search for new cures. Unfortunately, we still haven't discovered a miraculous antidote that would heal our dear ones ravished by cancer, heart attacks, or auto-immune disorders. However, through proper nutrition, stress management, and exercise, we can help prevent some of these debilitating conditions, and in some cases even begin to reverse the damage. Often a depleted immune system is primarily a result of years of free radical damage. What are free radicals? An atom is in a stable form when each electron on the outer shell has a complimentary counterpart spinning in the opposite direction. Beerman (2010) explains that a free radical is an atom that has lost at least one of its complimentary electrons from the outer shell. This loss causes the atom to become highly reactive. It will frantically seek to add back the missing electron(s) to [...]

December 4th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

Five Reasons Why You Should Take Supplements

Recently I started a class on micro nutrients. I was excited about all the new information I was learning until I realized sheepishly that some of my views on vitamins and minerals had to change.While I still buy a rainbow of fresh veggies and fruits plus a large variety of meats, to ensure the consumption of a balanced array of nutrients and phytonutrients for my family, I have become acutely aware of the need for supplementation with a multivitamin. It was a rather difficult, humbling realization that took me a few weeks to process. Here are five reasons that convinced me to supplement with a well balanced, natural multivitamin:   1. Soil Depletion Industrialized farming has left our soils depleted. Out of more than 70+ trace minerals necessary for producing healthy, nutrient-dense crops, modern farming methods put only two to three trace minerals back into the soil after harvest. Lieberman (2007) explains that our soil is depleted of selenium [...]

November 25th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , |5 Comments

Are You Chewing Your Food?

We live in a fast paced technical society where taking the time to eat three meals in a calm, relaxed manner is practically impossible. We eat while we are driving, talking on the phone, rushing out the door, doing homework, working, parenting, or, if we have the chance, staring at computers or TV screens. Do you experience indigestion, gas, or bloating after eating? Are you lethargic and fatigued at the end of a large meal? While these can be symptoms of digestive disorders or food allergies, before you  begin elimination diets, doctor's visits, and blood tests, I encourage you to ask yourself one very simple question:      Am I chewing my food properly?   The first time I encountered the concept of chewing properly was during a lecture on digestion that I was listening to on my computer while scarfing down an egg salad. When the professor asked whether we [...]

November 4th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: |6 Comments

Vitamin D Love

Today is a hard day. While beautifully colored leaves are waltzing around in the air, I am watching my husband painfully trying to chew on a piece of buttered toast. Maybe not the best breakfast for someone with a severe outer ear infection. I move out of the room like a zombie and grab the raw milk from the refrigerator. I pour most of the cream in a glass and offer it to him. This is our initiation into the cold, grey season. The Northwest settles into a monotonous, constant drizzle from now till April. There are sheets and sheets of dark grey clouds covering the sun. While the mysterious fog, the colorful leaves, and the chilling rain have their own charm (Stephanie Meyer located her famous Twilight series here) there are quite a few people who struggle with seasonal affective disorder, severe colds, and fatigue. Some experts link this [...]

October 25th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , |13 Comments

To Juice Or Not To Juice?

For the last year or so I have been reading quite a bit of confusing information about juicing. Some experts claim that it is extremely beneficial while others argue it is detrimental  for the human body. I must admit both parties have some very compelling arguments. Sally Fallon explains that "excessive consumption of fruit juice can also upset the acid-alkaline balance of the body, causing the urine to become alkaline rather than acid."Nourishing Traditions, Page 52   Very true. For this reason we we should juice mostly vegetables. I like to do a ratio of 85% vegetables and 15% fruit. We prefer sweetening our juice with granny smith apples. They have a lower glycemic index and they contain malic acid which supports kidney health. Sally Fallon also states that "fruit juice consumption should be limited to an ounce or two at a time, diluted with water, so you don't take in more fructose [...]

October 9th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: |4 Comments

The Truth About Fats IV: Hydrogenation And Trans Fats

In a previous article I elaborated on vegetable oil extractions with the description of the solvent-plus-high-heat method. Today I will venture further and explain the concept of hydrogenated oil as one of the leading causes of cancer and heart disease in the US. What is hydrogenation? Hydrogenation is the process through which vegetable oils - which are typically liquid at room temperature - are turned into solid fats by the addition of hydrogen atoms. Manufactures accomplish this by mixing the sensitive vegetable oils with tiny particles of nickel oxide. The oil with its nickel catalyst is then subjected to hydrogen gas in a high-pressure, high temperature reactor. Next, soap-like emulsifiers and starch are squeezed into the mixture to give it a better consistency; the oil is yet again subjected to high temperatures when it is steam-cleaned. This removes it's unpleasant odor. Sally Fallon, Nourishing Traditions, Page 14 Why the process of [...]

September 27th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , |0 Comments

Truth About Fats III: The Story Behind Vegetable Oil

This post is dedicated to decoding vegetable oil labels and finding oils that offer healthy, living supplement of omega - 6 fatty acids. There are three major methods of extracting oils from nuts and seeds: the cold pressed method, the expeller method, and the solvent method. Oil Extraction Methods The Cold-Pressed Method The cold pressed method is the best method of extracting oil without oxidizing it. Most large companies will use heavy granite or stainless steel presses. While some heat is generated by the friction, it must remain below 120* F (49* C) in order to be labeled cold pressed in the US. These  parameters change when you purchase cold pressed oil from any of the countries in the European Union, where the limit is 80* F (27* C). If the heat goes above this temperature, the labels will say "pressed" as opposed to "cold pressed'. The lower the temperature, the more of [...]

Truth About Fats II : Vegetable Oil

For the last fifty years, the public has been bombarded with propaganda about the benefits of vegetable oil. Pork fat, beef tallow, and butter have been vilified and blamed for high cholesterol, heart attacks, cancer, obesity, etc. In this post I will attempt to trace the history of the vegetable oil and question whether it is indeed as heart-healthy as all the advertisements make it out to be. I will begin by introducing the different kinds of fatty acids. Saturated fats - found in animal fats and tropical oils. They have no double bonds between individual atom carbons. All the bonds are "saturated" with hydrogen atoms. Saturated fats are stable at room temperature, and ideal for cooking at high temperatures. Monounsaturated fats - found in olive, avocado, macadamia, and almond oil. They have one unsaturated carbon bond. They are not as stable as saturated fats, and thus they stay liquid at room temperature. [...]

The Truth About The Low Fat Theory

If you google images for cholesterol or heart attacks, you will inevitably end up looking through countless images of eggs, bacon, butter, cheese, and the like. Everybody loves bacon, and yet we are told it is a guilty pleasure that causes high cholesterol and coronary heart disease. I will begin with the origins of the "low fat hypothesis", or "lipid theory", since it is where our fears of consuming too much bacon and butter originate from. If some of you are wondering what the lipid hypothesis, or low fat theory, is, here is a great explanation by Mary Enig and Sally Fallon from their book Eat Fat, Lose Fat. We eat a diet containing too much cholesterol and saturated fats, and as a result we develop a high level of cholesterol in our blood. High cholesterol causes arteriosclerosis. Atherosclerosis obstructs the vessels that bring blood to the heart, resulting in heart disease. I [...]

June 13th, 2012|Categories: Nutrition|Tags: , , , |6 Comments
Load More Posts