Bloating & Digestion

Are You Eating Gluten-free Bread?

With all the concerns about wheat these days, many people are turning to gluten-free bread. Gluten is one of the proteins in wheat. It helps make bread dough elastic, and gives bread a light soft texture, instead of the heavy, chewier texture of whole grain breads.

What is it about bread that is so hard to give up? Toasted, snuggling up to sandwich ingredients, or slathered with butter, bread is a comfort food for many of us.

Modern commercial wheat has been genetically modified, laced with pesticides and stripped of nutrients. Even people who are not allergic to gluten, or to wheat, are turning to other flour choices for bread and crackers.

It is also possible to have sensitivity to other grains, or to grains in general. If eating grains in the form of bread, pasta, or crackers causes bloating, gas, constipation, indigestion, or changes in your stool, consider that your body may not do well on grains. Buckwheat, wild rice, and quinoa are not grains, and are good substitutes. One cup of quinoa contains 222 calories, 39 grams carb, 8 grams protein and 3 grams fat. It also has some vitamins and minerals, making it a healthy food. But the carb content means you should limit serving size. It is a better choice than rice for carbs and protein. http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/cereal-grains-and-pasta/10352/2

In order to mimic the light soft texture of standard American bread, manufacturers have turned to ingredients like tapioca starch and potato starch. Tapioca is a root and was often used to make a pudding in the past. It is the high starch content of gluten-free breads which can sabotage blood sugar and cause weight gain. Starch is metabolized like sugar, so can spike and drop blood sugar just like cake. Udi’s Gluten-free Bread has tapioca and potato starch as the first ingredients. For 140 calories (2 slices) you get 22 grams of carbohydrate. My personal favorite is Food for Life Gluten-free Bread. The first ingredient is rice flour, and it has safflower oil instead of canola oil. Two slices are 110 calories.

There are other healthy choices, especially if you bake at home. Gluten-free flours from Bob’s Red Mill or Pamela’s, coconut flour and nut flours have less starch and higher protein generally. They will not mimic soft white bread, but they can be used for cookies, baked goods and crackers. Here is an easy recipe to try. http://theprettybee.com/2013/10/easy-gluten-free-cracker-recipe.html

If you are trying to lose weight, the best thing is to break the bread habit completely, and that can take some time. It really calls for some creative solutions to drop out the sandwich and toast habit. Bread and flour products are very filling, so your body may try to tell you that you are hungry, even if you have had plenty of calories. Add some more healthy fat to your diet, and that will help satisfy your appetite. You can also eat veggies in bulk, maybe with some healthy dip, like guacamole or hummus. Sliced jicama, celery, and cucumber can be used as dippers or carriers for things normally eaten with bread, such as tuna salad or nut butters.

How to know how much bread, pasta and starchy carbs you can eat? If you can eat starches without gaining inches or weight, your activity level and metabolism can handle the starch. If you are at all over-weight, you are eating beyond your body’s metabolic needs. Even if you are eating “whole grain” wheat and bread, you may be getting too much starch that turns to sugar. Ezekiel bread is still too high in carb content for many, if not most. Our activity levels just do not support high grain diets these days. The nutrition benefits are not balanced by any weight-gain that signifies a sugar metabolism problem.

If you are concerned about your gluten tolerance, come in for a blood spot test that will identify your true food sensitivities. You may be surprised by the foods that your body can’t tolerate that you may not have suspected.

For a detox or blood sugar program that helps break the bread/starch habit, come see us or call the office. 818-562-1400.

It has been said that man does not live by bread alone, and you can prove it to yourself by breaking the bread habit.

 

 

 

 

 

Coconut Oil for Beauty and Health

 

You might call coconut oil the best beauty oil for inside or outside the body. As a skin oil, coconut oil can be used at any age. Coconut oil is an excellent moisturizer for moisturizing dry skin, or removing make-up and cleansing the face. For infants, coconut oil can be used for moisturizing or diaper rash.

Mix coconut oil with Epsom salts and use as an exfoliating treatment that won’t dry out the skin and may even be beneficial for acne, without drying out blemish-prone skin like harsher acne cleansers.

Added to shakes and smoothies, coconut oil may contribute to weight loss and has even been shown to decrease belly fat and improved blood cholesterol levels, as reported in The Journal of Clinical Nutrition.  Despite the increase in calories participants in the study lowered their body mass and increased metabolism. That means that the rate of calorie usage by the body was improved, making weight loss easier, and increasing energy.

Subject to flus, viral infections or cold sores? Coconut oil is 50% Lauric acid, which converts to Monolaurin in the body, which has powerful anti-viral effects. These days our immune systems need all the help they can get, so coconut oil could be part of your defense system. Children could benefit both from the immune enhancement and from the brain/nervous system support. Ulcers caused by H-pylori bacteria and candida infections have also been helped by the properties of coconut oil. http://www.livestrong.com/article/476661-coconut-oil-the-immune-system/

If you are concerned about Candida over-growth or have gut/intestinal issues, coconut oil contains caprylic acid, which is anti-inflammatory, discourages unhealthy bacteria and fosters the growth of healthy gut flora. We can’t live without the good bugs that line our intestines, so keeping them happy and strong is the best kind of prevention.  http://www.thealternativedaily.com/alerts/coconutoilsecret/click-thyroidspecial.php

You can check your own candida levels by spitting in a tall glass of water first thing in the morning, before brushing your teeth. Allow a few hours and see if the glass begins to look like a science experiment, with long strings and odd lumps forming. That means you need digestive help to restore normal gut function. If the water remains clear, that is a good sign of gut health.

Healthy fats like coconut oil are also vital for helping vitamins and minerals get absorbed. Some vitamins are fat loving, and they need fat to help them pass through the intestinal walls into the blood to be carried to the cells. Fats are a component of cell membranes and form a lipid layer that protects the cells. Fats may protect against neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Natural, unaltered, fats allow the transmission of nerve impulses. Processed fats like corn, canola, soybean oil, and margarine can interfere with nerve transmission. http://www.thenaturalvet.net/Fats-and-Their-Relationship-to-Cell-Membrane-Function_ep_61.html

Adding a good fat like coconut oil to your diet can make you feel more satisfied, so may actually help with appetite and over-eating.

What makes coconut oil so unique? Fats are arranged in chains of fatty acids. Coconut oil is composed of medium-chain fatty-acids (MCFA’s). In the 90’s it was discovered that medium-chain fatty acids helped control seizures in children and now elite athletes have discovered their benefits for endurance.

The beauty of MCFA’s is that they are burned easily for energy and cannot be converted into fat cells in the body. MCFA’s appear to improve mental clarity and provide energy for the heart muscle, so may be protective.

So, if coconut oil sounds like a good thing to you, try incorporating it into your diet for a month and see if you notice a difference.  All you have to lose is belly fat, excess appetite and dry skin or acne.  

One of the best ways to include coconut oil is to add it to a morning protein shake. If you would like a sample of the Standard Process Nutritional Shake, ask us and we will include healthy recipes. Ask us about our flavored Stevia that can turn your shake into a yummy snack or dessert as part of a detox, weight loss, or blood sugar balancing program.

 

 

Stop a Runny Nose!

 

It is not just colds and flu that can make a nose run. Cold weather, sugary/fatty foods, congested liver/gall bladders, or allergies can also cause you to reach for a tissue. Just when you want to look your best for the Holidays, and not compete for the Rudolph contest, a runny nose can spoil your fun. Fight back with these healthy strategies.

Here are some tips to dry up quickly.

1)   Massage the points on the sides of your nose where the curve of your nostrils meets your cheek. Tap under your eyes, in the hollow, and down towards your cheeks and sides of the nose. Alternate these points, massage and then tapping.

2)   Find the point halfway between the bottom of your ribs on the right side, and your belly button. Massage the area firmly to release the gall bladder.

3)   Take “Cold Calm” from Boiron Homeopathics. This safe, natural medicine can stop a runny nose for a few hours, and can be used for children.

4)   Take Zypan and Multizyme for digestive aids. Sip some apple cider vinegardiluted in water. Sufficient stomach acid helps the liver/gall bladder work better. And extra digestive help may help you to sleep after feasting.

5)   Get plenty of sleep. If you feel stressed, or traveling, take extra adrenal support. Fatigued adrenal glands can produce symptoms that mimic a cold or allergy. If you suffer from any type of allergies, your adrenal glands are weak and need support!

6)   Lay off sugar. Sugar stresses the body in every way, from depleting minerals to lowering stomach acid, to weakening the immune system. Use Stevia and Xylitol for sweet treats that don’t compromise your health.

7)   Don’t overdo coffee, which also stresses your adrenals and dehydrates your body. Try Teecino herbal coffee, sip herbal tea, and drink extra water. Not a water fan? Try a naturally sparkling water like Pellegrino and flavor it with cucumber or fruit slices or flavored liquid Stevia.

8)   Come in for some soft tissue work on your liver. The sinuses are very affected by the ability of the liver and kidneys to detoxify. There are acupuncture reflexes and acupressure points that can offer relief, and even help a real cold or flu to move through quickly.

9)   Consider food intolerance testing if the runny nose is chronic. Keep a food journal, but know that it may take 48 hours before a food issue shows up in your nose.

10)   Avoid toxic people. Today someone asked me if I thought her body was allergic to the guy she is seeing. When she described his behavior to me I told her that it is probably not her body that is allergic, but SHE may be allergic to how he treats her!

Once you find out how well natural medicine can work for you, a runny nose won’t slow you down. It is just a symptom of a need to move something through your body more quickly.

May all the running in your life involve kids, dogs, and running around with people you love, and not your nose. And keep in mind that these tips work on people of all ages.

 

 

Simple Home Test for Candida

 

Doesn’t it seem like everyone has Candida these days? If you look on the Internet just about every type of symptom known to man is a sign of Candida. So, how do you really know if your symptoms are Candida?

First, let’s look at what Candida is. There are many kinds of yeast (single-cell organisms) in our intestinal tract, vaginal tract, mouth and sinus mucosa that are part of our normal internal “garden”. We can’t survive without all the friendly bugs that cohabitate with us, and perform assorted vital functions. Candida is one of the friendly guys that act like trash collectors and help to digest debris, in the same way that yeast digests sugar in a bread recipe.  But Candida has to live in balance with other good bugs. Over use antibiotics, eat a crappy diet, or get exposed to chemicals (like most Americans) and the Candida yeasties can grow out of control when other good bugs are absent. Have you ever planted mint in a garden? It spreads like wildfire and can take over all the space for itself. I learned this the hard way.

Fortunately the balance can be restored. It may not be enough to take any old probiotic. Dietary improvements, handling sugar cravings, addressing other gut issues such as Irritable Bowel, chronic constipation, toxic bowel or food allergies may be needed to fully restore the gut flora balance so your garden blooms. 70% of your immune system resides in your gut, and it is literally the soil on which health flourishes or languishes in your body.

Milton White, MD. believed that cancer is a chronic, infectious, fungus disease. He was able to find fungal spores in every sample of cancer tissue he studied. Our grain crops are contaminated with mycotoxins, or various types of fungus that live on grains like wheat. The mycotoxins are toxic to humans, and the fungicides used to control them are also toxic to humans. This is a major problem with all grain crops.

http://www.cancerfightingstrategies.com/fungus-and-cancer.html#sthash.1EP567Xc.dpbs 

 Discovering if you have candida and treating it effectively is vital to your long-term health. Do this test yourself at home as soon as you can. First thing in the morning, before you drink water or brush your teeth, spit into a tall glass of clean water. You may have to work up some spit if your mouth is dry. After a good spit, allow the glass of water to sit undisturbed and check it after a few minutes, an hour, and a few hours. If there is no Candida the water will remain clear. If there is a Candida overgrowth in your body the water will look like a science experiment. Long “legs” will develop and trail down to the bottom of the glass. White matter may pool in the bottom of the glass and the water may get cloudy, with white specks appearing.

If your test reveals that you have Candida, come in and get checked to find out exactly what personalized program you need to restore your gut flora balance. This is an important marker of your immune health, and if your test is positive, you will have other symptoms. But now we know. We can organize a treatment program and have you retest until the Candida is contained and you are on a healthier path. Let me know what your results are, and if you have any questions. Good luck with your test!