Nutrition, Digestion & Health

Have you ever wondered why we have the highest rates of obesity, diabetes, and a range of chronic illnesses?  Considering all the advice over the past 50 years on what to eat and what not to eat, you would expect we are all brimming with health.  Perhaps what has been so widely promoted via the media is not quite accurate.  Take for example the food pyramid.  For many years we have been told to increase grains in our diets.  Now we find that grains lead to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, allergies and lots more.  So what should the food pyramid really look like?

A healthy balanced daily diet should consist of lots of fresh vegetables, some fruit, good quality protein, lots of fresh filtered water, some quality grains, good fats and forget the sweets – sorry!  Take a look at the HEALTHY FOOD PYRAMID and adjust your diet today for that boost in energy.

ist1_5662140-assorted-vegetables

“Man is a food-dependent creature; if you don’t feed him he will die. If you feed him improperly, part of him will die.”

– Emanuel Cheraskin, MD, DMD

As the above quote by the late Dr Emanuel Cheraskin infers, good nutrition is fundamental to good health.  Which indeed it is, however, in addition to eating ‘good’ foods and drinking ‘good’ water, our body must also be able to breakdown, digest, absorb and distribute the nutrients to every cell in our body.  Our body chemistry must also work well.  A comprehensive analysis of your health will establish which areas of your body chemistry require support.  This provides the foundation of a tailored program and guidance to help you attain optimal health.

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Long term effects of eating poorly

ist1_1699255-apple-and-hamburger-on-scales-conceptualResearch over the years is now revealing that what we eat may affect our health, but more importantly, it changes our DNA thereby affecting the health of our children and grandchildren.  Dr Mercola has published the following article relating to cancer on subsequent generations – this is just one example of how our lifestyles impact future generations.  Another modern-day threat to the health of future generations is genetic modification.  Watch the video before it is removed!

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/05/11/rats-on-junk-food-pass-cancer-down-the-generations.aspx

One of the most common nutritionally empty foods is bread.  In fact, The Daily Mail June 15, 2011 reported:

In 1911, the bread which made up 40 percent of the diet of the impoverished people of Britain was blamed for widespread poor health. Modern nutritional science confirms the accuracy of this assessment.

Refined white flour contains almost no natural minerals and vitamins. In particular, vitamin B deficiency from poor diet resulted in a range of illnesses that the Victorians called ‘wasting diseases’. And white flour at the time was usually laced with alum, which made bad flour look whiter.

According to the Daily Mail:   “[In modern times], the Real Bread Campaign, a non-profit pressure group, claims that bread has actually gotten worse since 1911 in terms of secret adulterants — enzymes that do not have to be declared on labels — still being smuggled into it.  Today, despite the modern fashion for healthy eating, ‘nutritionally empty’ white bread accounts for more than 50 percent of what we buy.”

One of the main dietary recommendations I give is to stop eating bread – at least bread made with wheat flour.  Alternatives include rye, spelt, oat, millet, kamut and other grains which have not been as adulterated as wheat.  Real the full article and comments by Dr Mercola at http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/06/30/we-have-known-bread-has-been-bad-for-your-health-for-over-a-century.aspx

Over the past 100 years our soils have become increasingly depleted in essential nutrients.  So not only are we making poor food choices, selecting fast take away options and quick meals, the fresh food we are buying is grossly deficient in nutrients.  The production “Food Matters” provides research into how deficient our foods have become, making the need for proper supplementation a reality.  However, not only are our foods depleted in essential nutrients, they are becoming increasingly damaging to our health due to genetic modification (GM).  Here are just a few articles on GM and the stand different countries are taking to this type of farming industry:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/02/07/colorado-bans-gmo-crops.aspx?e_cid=20120207_DNL_art_1

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/01/31/monsanto-worst-company-of-2011.aspx?e_cid=20120131_DNL_art_1

 

Stress

Stress is blamed for many problems in modern day life: from a wide variety of health issues, to career burn-out and even making people more accident prone. Today, demanding work and family roles, high speed living, managing finances and relationships may all trigger our stress response. Empower yourself and learn how to take control of your stress.

To help identify where your stress lies, feel free to complete the questionnaire. DASS measures stress, anxiety and depression levels which is useful in assessing the most suitable treatment for your personal benefit. 

The link between stress and conditions such as diabetes, depression and anxiety are explained in research.

 

Mental health, the gut and stress

Did you know that a healthy mind and balanced emotions are strongly related to the health of our digestive system or ‘gut’? Stress impacts hugely on our body’s digestive capacity. Read more and learn how you can regain emotional stability, health and vitality.

 

Is SOY good or bad for us?

It doesn’t take long to find contradictory research articles published about soy – some professing it is ‘good’ for us and others warning about its evils.  There is also a strong delineation among therapists, some pro and others strongly against anything soy. Dr Mercola sheds more light on the affect of marketing campaigns and the rise to fame of soy products over the past 10 years.  While his research and information is USA based, similar trends are evident in Australia.  I always recommend soy be organic/non GMO and consumed fermented only. Dr Mercola’s article provides greater detail about this, genetic modification and growing methods of soy.  Read the ingredients on labels – you may be shocked to find how many processed foods contain soy. GMO soy is cheap and easy to produce so is used as a cheap filler. 

 

Oils ain’t oils

Essential fatty acids or EFAs are so named because they cannot be made by our body.  This means that we must ingest them as foods or supplements.  EFAs are essential for heart health and good circulation; supporting immune function; improving joint flexibility; healthy skin; cell membrane structure; brain function; nervous system; pregnancy and foetal development; protecting the aging mind; improving behaviour, focus and learning in children; healthy eyes; and reducing harmful effects of stress.  The bottom line is that without adequate levels of omega-3 fats, cell membranes cannot admit nutrients or expel toxins. 

EFAs are made up predominantly of Omega 3 and 6.  We get more than enough of the Omega 6 variety through plant oils including corn, sunflower and olive oils.  However, we generally consume far below our body’s needs of Omega 3.  In addition, excess consumption of Omega 6 oils actually blocks the Omega 3 oils.

Omega 3 fatty acids fall into two major categories:  plant derived (flaxseed) and marine derived (fish oil).  this is often confusing and many people think that the two are interchangeable.  However, only fish oil provides pre-formed EPA and DHA, the fatty acids that the body actually uses.  Flaxseed oil contains alpha linolenic acid (ALA) which can only be partially converted into EPA and DHA, but that conversion is slow and easily inhibited by lifestyle and health factors.  These include high consumption of saturated fats or trans fatty acids as well as deficiency of any of a number of vitamins and minerals which are essential for the conversion.

Research shows that less than 15% of ALA converts to EPA, and less than 5% converts to DHA if at all.  Fish oil is the optimal and direct source of EPA and DHA.  Flaxseed contains many health promoting benefits but does not provide the necessary amounts of EPA and DHA.

So which fish oil to buy?  Quality is essential here.  Contamination is an issue as is improper storage.  Fish oils can go rancid easily and should always be stored cool – preferably refrigerated.  EPA and DHA are used for different functions in our body – it is best to consult a qualified practitioner to ascertain the best type or blend for you and your children. It should be noted that only three manufacturers in Australia meet the GOED safety regulations for fish oil purity with products containing lowest levels of peroxide, acids, lead, cadmium, mercury, arsenic, PCBs and dioxins.  These quality fish oils are available from True Medicine and are generally not sold over-the-counter.

Recently, Krill oil has been touted even better than fish oils.  Read about the differences between krill and fish oils.

People often ask me why we seem to need more Omega 3 than we used to.  The answer lies in the high consumption of Omega 6 oils. Our ancestors consumed a more balanced diet with Omega 6:Omega 3 ratios of about 1:1.  Modern day diets can be as imbalanced as 25:1.  Consuming high Omega 6 in your diet in relation to Omega 3 oils has been shown to contribute to loss of bone density [J Clin Endocrinol Metab (2006) 91:3349-54].  Lowering your intake of Omega 6 oils to a ratio of 4:1 was “associated with a 70% decrease in total mortality” from cardiovascular disease.  A ratio of 2.5:1 reduced colorectal cancer.  The same applies to breast cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and asthma – although the required ratios differ.  Bottom line is that your body needs Omega 3 oils.  Quality is the key – read about why not all fish oils represent auality:  Cod Liver Oil Controversies.

Clinical assessment:  if you would like to have a comprehensive fatty acid profile done, please advise when booking your appointment 07 5530 1863

 

Not all vitamins and minerals were created equal

Natural remedies have been used by man for thousands of years. So why is it that they sometimes receive a bad rap? There is a vast array of products readily available on the shelves of supermarkets and health food stores, but not all are the same or as valuable to our health. To the untrained person, the decision about which one is best can be daunting. All vitamins and minerals weren’t created equal. Therefore, it is recommended that you seek the advice of a qualified health professional and always tell them what other medications or products you are using as there are possible interactions between nature’s health and man-made medication.

Dagmar prescribes quality practitioner-only supplements which are of the highest grade giving you value for money.  Supplements contain nutrients that are readily available for your body.  All current patients are eligible to purchase their supplements from the clinic thereby ensuring quality and monitoring so as not to imbalance the body’s needs.

Dr. Alexis Carrel received a Nobel Prize for proving that a living cell would be immortal if it had sufficient amounts of nutrients in proper balance of all elements needed. He proved that cells simply need proper nutrition and to have wastes and pollutants removed to live indefinitely in their life-supporting fluid.

Every cell in your body must have minerals to live and function. Every beat of your heart requires minerals. Your brain cells and nervous system utilise minerals to deliver electrical signals to every part of your body. Vitamins, enzymes, hormones, the immune system and almost all biological activities need a wide variety of minerals to work right. The skeletal structure (the skull, bones and teeth) depend on an adequate mineral supply to stay strong. There are many factors in our daily lives that increase the need to supplement.

As an example, magnesium is the activator for over 300 enzymes. Also it is integral in the production of ATP, the energy compound of the body. Magnesium is seriously deficient in the average diet.

Similarly, zinc is a component of all cells. It is a cofactor in nearly 70 different enzymes, and provides significant benefits for the immune system, growth and development of muscular and skeletal structures, and tissue repair. Today’s foods contain too little for our needs, especially those of children.

Are you deficient in minerals? Do you feel tired? Just don’t have the energy to cope with all that is happening in your life? Are you feeling down, depressed? Perhaps your body is deficient in minerals.

Download your mineral deficiency questionnaire here.  If you are unable to attend the clinic for a consultation and evaluation, please call 07 5530 1863 to arrange for your evaluation.

Click here for information on the humble Vitamin C. Please note that Ascorbic acid is not Vitamin C.

Click here for information on Iron

 

The Acid – Alkaline Balance or pH

In 1932 Otto Warburg won the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his discovery that cancer was anaerobic: cancer occurs in the absence of free oxygen. As innocuous as this discovery might seem, it is actually a startling and significant finding. What it basically means is that cancer is caused by a lack of free oxygen in the body and therefore, whatever causes this to occur is the cause most diseases.

Much has been written on this topic and I can highly recommend books by Robert R. Barefoot & Carl J. Reich, MD on Calcium and its role in the maintenance of health. A note however: ensure you receive only quality products and always seek the advice of a qualified health professional.

Visit this site for information about quality coral calcium as mentioned in the above books: http://www.coralcayhealth.com.au/

There is much we can do in our daily lives to help our body maintain the delicate acid-alkaline balance.

Click here for an easy reference list of foods that cause acidity in our body and others that help neutralise excess acidity.  Dagmar is also able to provide effective treatments which alkalise the tissue, thereby ensuring oxygen reaches every cell in your body.  Do not underestimate the impact that stress has on unbalancing the body’s pH.

Low salt intake will contribute to acidity build up in some cells.  High acidity within the cell can damage the DNA structure and be the initiating mechanism for cancer formation.  Salt is important – not the processed stuff, but salt high in minerals and nutrients like Celtic Sea Salt and Himalayan rock salt.  And with salt, goes water – ensure you are drinking sufficient purufied water daily to remain well hydrated.  40ml of water for each kg of body weight.  Rule of thumb for salt intake:  for every 10 glasses or 2 litres of water add half a teaspoon of Himalayan rock salt per day.

Diabetes Type II

Diabetes is on the increase.  Read what Dr Mercola has to say about this avoidable condition.

A widely used drug in the treatment of patients with Type ll Diabetes has been found to significantly lower Vitamin B12 levels in those patients.  Low levels of B12 are directly associated with elevated homocysteine levels and may be a major contributing factor to cardiovascular disease.

Click here for an informative article about the dangers of wheat.  Read about the effects of coffee on insulin and diabetes.