Are you deficient in your nutrients?

VITAMIN A Healthiest Food Sources
  • Eyes do not adjust to darkness
  • See poorly in dim light
  • Eyes are dry and inflamed
  • Skin is rough, scaly and dry, especially the elbows, knees and buttocks
  • Unable to distinguish between yellow and blue
  • Eyelids “glue” together, especially in the morning
  • Loss of sense of smell
  • Loss of appetite
  • Skin blemishes and discoloration
  • Frequent infections of bladder or urinary tract
  • Dry scalp (flakiness)
  • Dry nose and throat
  • Brittle nails
  • Frequent diarrhea
  • Loss of hearing
  • Gallstones
  • Recurrent sties in eyes
  • Female: spontaneous abortion
  • Ulcers (gastric, duodenal or colon)
  • Frequent allergies
  • Frequent canker sores
  • Subject to constant stress, strain and tension

 

  • Organic Eggs
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Turnip green
  • Kale
  • Parsley
  • Bell peppers
  • Mustard greens
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Swiss chard
  • Sweet potato
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Collard greens
  • Cantaloupe
  • Winter squash
  • Apricots
  • Broccoli
  • Basil
  • Tomato
  • Oregano
  • Asparagus
  • Chili pepper
  • Green beans
  • Brussel’s sprouts
  • Summer squash

VITAMIN B1

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Twitching of eye muscles
  • Puffiness around the eyes
  • Frequent blood shot eyes
  • Fatigue easily or abnormally tired
  • Loss of appetite
  • Easily upset and irritable
  • Loss of strength in the lower arms and legs
  • Hurt all over but can’t pinpoint the area
  • Tenderness in the calf muscles
  • Confusion and forgetfulness
  • Gastric distress (indigestion)
  • Constipation
  • Diastolic blood pressure over 90 (bottom number)
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Told you have an enlarged heart
  • Delayed or slow reflexes
  • Prickling sensation in lower extremities
  • Twitching of eye muscles
  • Puffiness around the eyes
  • Frequent blood shot eyes
  • Fatigue easily or abnormally tired
  • Loss of appetite
  • Easily upset and irritable
  • Loss of strength in the lower arms and legs
  • Hurt all over but can’t pinpoint the area
  • Tenderness in the calf muscles
  • Confusion and forgetfulness
  • Gastric distress (indigestion)
  • Constipation
  • Diastolic blood pressure over 90 (bottom number)
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Told you have an enlarged heart
  • Delayed or slow reflexes
  • Prickling sensation in lower extremities

 

  • Brown Rice
  • Oats
  • Soy beans
  • Peas
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Capsicum
  • Turnip greens
  • Beet greens
  • Apricots
  • Pineapples
  • Pistachio nuts
  • Mustard seeds
  • Wheat germ
VITAMIN B2 (Riboflavin)

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Cracks in the corner of the mouth
  • Red sore tongue
  • Shiny tongue
  • Feeling of sand in eyes
  • Eyes tire easily
  • Burning or itching of the eyes
  • Eyes are sensitive to light
  • Blood shot eyes
  • Frequent sores on lips
  • Female: vaginal itching
  • Male: scrotal itching
  • Swelling of tongue
  • Muscle cramps in lower legs & feet
  • “whiteheads”, especially on bridge of nose and under eyelids
  • Dizzy spells
  • Oily skin or oily hair
  • Excessive watering of the eyes
  • Have or had cataracts
  • Lack of stamina or vigor

 

 

  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Boiled spinach
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Asparagus (boiled)
  • Swish chard (boiled)
  • Mustard Greens (boiled)
  • Broccoli
  • Collard greens (boiled)
  • Organic eggs
  • Green beans
  • Celery
  • Kale
  • Cabbage
  • Goat’s milk
  • Strawberries
  • Raspberries
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Almonds
  • Tempeh
  • Plum
VITAMIN B6

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Ringing in ears
  • Sore lips, mouth and tongue
  • Loss of hair
  • Numbness & cramps in arms or legs
  • Muscular weakness
  • Often nauseous or dizzy
  • Nervousness, irritability or depression
  • Often confused
  • Painful joints of fingers and hands
  • Swelling of hands, feet and ankles
  • Increase in urination
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
  • Convulsions
  • Fainting spells
  • Use oral contraceptives (past or present)
  • Eczema
  • Tooth decay
  • Have or had kidney stones
  • High cholesterol
  • Juvenile acne
  • Frequent attacks of diarrhea
  • Urine is sometimes greenish tint
  • Burning sensation in feet
  • Spinach
  • Bell peppers
  • Turnip greens
  • Garlic
  • Tuna, yellowfin
  • Cauliflower
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Mustard greens
  • Banana
  • Celery
  • Cabbage
  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Turmeric powder
  • Kale
  • Collard greens
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Watermelon
  • Cod
  • Leeks
  • Tomato
  • Snapper

 

VITAMIN B12 (Cyanocobalamin) Healthiest Food Sources
  • Anemia
  • Soreness or weakness in arms or legs
  • Arm and shoulder pain
  • Shooting pains in any part of the body
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sore tongue
  • General muscular weakness
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Painful facial muscles
  • Hot or cold sensations
  • Feel you have lost your incentive in life
  • Difficulty walking (stumble, shuffle)
  • Stammer occasionally
  • Jerking sensation in limbs
  • Organic Eggs
  • Seaweed
  • Spirulina
  • Organic Meats
  • Organic Dairy

FOLIC ACID

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Early greying of hair
  • Swollen tongue
  • Alternating loose and hard bowel movements
  • Easily fatigued
  • Chronically fatigued
  • Shortness of breath
  • History of cleft palate
  • Dizzy spells
  • Have been diagnosed with macrocytic anemia
  • Use oral contraceptives (past or present)
  • Greyish brown pigmentation of the skin, especially face
  • Beets
  • Peas
  • Oranges
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Honeydew melons
  • Beans
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Whole grains like quinoa, millet, barley, spelt, kamut, amaranth, brown rice
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Avocado
  • Wheat germ

VITAMIN B3 (Niacin)

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Muscular weakness
  • General fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Frequent indigestion
  • Red skin around nose and eyes
  • Bad breath
  • Frequent canker sores
  • Can’t fall asleep
  • Hands and/or feet go numb
  • Irritable, easily upset
  • Hands and/or feet feel hot
  • Recurring headaches
  • Subject to constant stress, strain and tension
  • Depression
  • Loss of memory
  • Dry, scaly patches where skin is exposed to sunlight
  • Burning tongue
  • Tongue is dark and mouth is sore
  • Chronic skin inflammation (eczema, psoriasis)
  • Desire alcohol

 

  • Organic chicken breast
  • Salmon
  • Halibut
  • Turkey breast
  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Asparagus
  • Tomatoes
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Mustard greens
  • Green peas
  • Broccoli
  • Organic peanuts
  • Eggplant
  • Spinach
  • Spelt

VITAMIN B5 (Pantothenic Acid)

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Subject to constant stress and tension
  • Chronic headache
  • Physically feel weak
  • Abnormally tired
  • Frequent cold and upper respiratory infections
  • Suddenly dizzy
  • Physically and/or mentally overworked
  • Feel lightheaded when standing up
  • Loss of feeling in hands and feet
  • Suffer from allergies
  • Frequent gastric distress (indigestion)
  • Have periods of deep depression
  • Abdominal cramps and pains
  • Chronic constipation
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
  • Arthritis
  • Have attacks of vomiting

 

  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Turnip greens,
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Tomato
  • Strawberries
  • Grapefruit
  • Organic Yogurt
  • Egg
  • Winter squash
  • Collard greens
  • Swiss chard

 

VITAMIN C

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Anemia
  • Chronic stress
  • Bleeding or inflamed gums
  • Easily bruise
  • Small red or pink spots under the skin
  • Susceptible to infections, including colds
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swollen or painful joints
  • Frequent nosebleeds
  • Do you smoke? (cigarettes, cigar or pipe)
  • Ruptured blood vessels in the eye
  • Have fleeting joint pain
  • Known metal poisoning
  • History of severe burns (including sunburns)

 

  • Peppers
  • Strawberries
  • Broccoli
  • Guava, raw
  • Red sweet pepper
  • Kiwi fruit
  • Orange
  • Orange juice
  • Green pepper
  • Grapefruit juice
  • Vegetable juice cocktail
  • Strawberries
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cantaloupe
  • Papaya
  • Kohlrabi
  • Broccoli
  • Sweet potato
  • Tomato juice
  • Cauliflower
  • Pineapple
  • Kale
  • Mango

 

VITAMIN D

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Poor bone development
  • Muscular numbness, tingling or spasms
  • Had rickets (bow legs, knock-knees, bone enlargement)
  • Tissues are flabby
  • Dull pains in lower back and thighs
  • A lot of cavities
  • Deep pains in the leg (bone pain)
  • Diagnosed with osteomalacia (softening of the bones)
  • Vague aches and pains
  • Arthritis
  • Feel soreness or tenderness in ribs or breast bone
  • Stomach or gastric ulcers

 

  • Wild Salmon
  • Shrimp
  • Organic Eggs
  • Organic milk
  • Cod
  • Herring
  • Sardines

VITAMIN E

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Have or had a disc problem (slipped disc in spine)
  • Changes in heart rate (fast to slow)
  • Known heart weakness or problem
  • Female: one or more miscarriage
  • Use mineral oil for laxative purposes
  • Have seen “fat” in your stool
  • Gallbladder troubles
  • Colitis
  • Impaired circulation (cold spots or patchy skin)
  • Male: known sterility or loss of sex drive
  • Female: menstrual discomfort or hot flashes
  • Varicose veins
  • Chest pains and/ or left arm pain
  • History of blood clot
  • History of inflamed veins

 

  • Mustard greens
  • Swiss chard
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Turnip greens
  • Almonds
  • Spinach
  • Collard greens
  • Kale
  • Papaya
  • Olives
  • Bell peppers
  • Brussel’s sprouts
  • Kiwi
  • Tomato
  • Blueberries
  • Wheat Germ Oil
  • Peanuts, dry roasted
  • Dandelion greens

ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Brittle or lusterless hair
  • Nails break, peel, crack and are brittle
  • Have allergies
  • Underweight
  • Dry skin
  • Skin disorders like psoriasis
  • Frequent attacks or diarrhea
  • Dandruff
  • Known kidney trouble
  • Constipation

 

  • Walnuts
  • Hazelnuts
  • Flax seeds
  • Hempseeds
  • Evening Primrose oil
  • Pomegranate oil
  • Borage oil
  • Ocean fish
  • Seaweed/algae

CALCIUM

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Numbness and/or tingling in arms/legs
  • Frequent muscle cramps
  • Vague pains in joints
  • Heart palpitations
  • Slow heart rate
  • Can’t get to sleep or stay asleep
  • Female: menstrual cramps
  • Trembling fingers
  • Dull backache
  • Frequent cavities

 

  • Parsley
  • Tahini/sesame seeds
  • Salba seeds
  • Almonds
  • Nettle tea
  • Carob
  • Watercress
  • Spinach
  • Mustard greens
  • Organic dairy

 

CHROMIUM

Healthiest Food Sources

  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Alcohol intolerance
  • Sugar cravings

 

  • Romaine lettuce
  • Onions
  • Tomato

 

COPPER

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Weak hair and nails
  • Early greying of hair
  • Fungus infection in nails
  • Eyes are sensitive to light
  • Hypothyroid

 

  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Turnip greens
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Swiss chard
  • Spinach
  • Sesame seeds
  • Mustard greens
  • Kale
  • Summer squash
  • Asparagus
  • Eggplant
  • Cashews

 

IRON

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Anemia
  • Fingernails are pale
  • Dizzy spells
  • Tire easily
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cry without a reason
  • Poor appetite
  • Fingernails appear flat and brittle
  • Pain in heels
  • Pain in fingertips
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Shoulder joints are painful
  • Sleepy in daytime, sleepless at night
  • Sensation of spots before eyes
  • Constipation
  • Dried beans like lima, kidney, peas
  • Whole grains like millet, oats and brown rice
  • Eggs (especially egg yolks)
  • Dried fruits like prunes, raisins, apricots
  • almonds
  • Brazil nut
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Collards
  • Asparagus
  • Dandelion greens
  • Oysters
  • Organic lean red meat
  • Wild Salmon

MAGNESIUM

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Poor muscle coordination
  • Prone to athletic injuries (strained knees)
  • As a child had partial paralysis for unknown reason
  • As a child had failing eyesight
  • As a child had failing hearing
  • Myasthenia gravis or multiple sclerosis
  • Diabetes
  • Allergies
  • Dizzy spells
  • Bone deformities
  • Ringing in ears
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Crave chocolate before period
  • Muscle spasms
  • Constipation
  • Insomnia

 

  • Swiss chard
  • Spinach
  • Kelp
  • Basil
  • Summer squash
  • Coriander seeds
  • Turnip greens
  • Mustard greens
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Broccoli
  • Cucumbers
  • Cloves
  • Halibut
  • Flaxseeds
  • Celery
  • Collard greens
  • Kale
  • Mustard seeds
  • Ginger root
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Sesame seeds
  • Quinoa

ZINC

Healthiest Food Sources
  • Wounds heal slowly
  • Loss of sense of smell
  • Loss of sense of taste
  • Diabetes
  • Feel more tired than usual
  • Acne
  • Male: diagnosed with prostate problems
  • Hypothyroid

 

 

  • Crimini mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Squash
  • Asparagus
  • Swiss chard
  • Collard greens
  • Miso
  • Chickpeas
  • Maple syrup
  • Broccoli
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Sesame seeds
  • Mustard seeds

IODINE

Healthiest Food Sources

  • Feel cold even in warm weather
  • Low blood pressure
  • Gain weight easily
  • Dull pain under shoulder blades
  • Sluggish metabolism
  • Dry hair
  • Brittle nails
  • Eyes sensitive to bright light
  • Recurrent sties
  • High cholesterol
  • Decreased sexual interest
  • Dull headaches
  • Swelling of the eyes, hands and feet
  • Goiter
  • Alternating fast/slow pulse

 

  • Kelp
  • Organic yogurt
  • Organic eggs
  • Strawberries
  • Organic mozzarella cheese

Immune Fortifying Veggie Soup

Serves 4-6

1 lb potatoes (5 small or medium), not peeled & quartered
4 cups water
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp dried basil
½ tsp cumin
3 tbsp olive oil
½-1 tsp sea salt
4 slices ginger root
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
½ cup tomato, diced
½ cup several of following vegetables: carrot, celery, green pepper, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, beets
½ cup chopped green onions

In a large stockpot, combine potatoes and water and boil for 15-20 minutes. Add the seasonings, oil, and salt. Place chopped vegetables into the pot, cover, and cook over low heat for 10-20 minutes, until veggies are tender. Sprinkle with green onions.

10 Daily Tips for Healthier Living

1. Start the day with positive thoughts as soon as you open your eyes. Don’t put negative energy into your day before you even get out of bed. Always believe that you will persevere. For example say: Today, I will treat myself well.

Before you shower try:

2. Dry skin brushing: Using a natural bristle brush or loofah, make small light circles starting at your feet working towards heart. Continue from your fingertips to your heart area. Do this on bare skin, without water, and quickly. Dry skin brushing will take one minute once you make this a habit. The benefit of this practice is its ability to remove dead skin, allows for better gas exchange, increase venous return to the heart which helps varicose veins and most importantly, this increases lymph circulation which removes infections and boosts the immune system.

 

After washing in the shower try:

3. Contrast shower: End your shower with 1minute of water as hot as can handle followed by 30 seconds of as cold as you can handle. Repeat this 3 times. It’s the difference in temperature that has the therapeutic benefit. Contract showers increase circulation, help remove toxins, stimulates lymphatic circulation which improves your immune system and it wakes you up!

4. Good Food:

  • Start your day with a glass of room temperature water with 1 tbsp of lemon juice in it upon rising. Lemon, a great source of Vitamin C, is a natural antimicrobial so it cleans and disinfects the inside of your body. Additionally, it stimulates the production of bile which is an important part of detoxification.
  • Eat breakfast every morning. If time is sparse then bring it in the car if you have to. Try a smoothie, nuts and seeds, or organic protein bars. Try to keep healthy snacks in your brief case, the glove box, or desk drawer so when things get hectic you can still eat well.
  • There is no perfect diet and you need to discover what works best for you.  Remember, you are what you eat. Everything you put in your mouth is broken down to make up the cells of you body. Food can be your best medicine or your greatest poison: you decide. Diet is also about cultural expectations, financial constraints, emotional well-being, and social activities. It is a gradual and life-time experimentation. Consider seeking help from your Naturopathic Doctor to find the eating plan that works best for you.

5. Move

Try to get up every hour throughout the day even if only for 30 seconds to prevent blood and lymph from stagnating. Try walking, stretching, jogging on the spot, yoga, or Tai Chi. While you’re at it try deep breathing through the nose. Make one of those movement breaks intense enough to bring on a good sweat for at least 15 minutes. This doesn’t need to be “exercise”. Chasing toddlers, moving furniture, cleaning windows…it all counts.

While reading or watching TV, try:

6. Castor Oil packs: Obtain a 9 by 9 inch piece of flannel, soak the flannel in castor oil and apply it over the liver area which is the upper right quadrant of abdomen. Place a plastic bag over top the flannel and a hot water bottle on top of that. Leave it on for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours. This procedure promotes detoxification which increases energy, balances hormones and improves digestion.

7. Health Journal: Every day briefly write down entries under the following headings:

  • Diet: Be aware of the food and drinks you choose each day by keeping a diet diary. You can’t make changes until know what you’re choosing now.
  • Symptoms: Headache, fatigue, constipation etc.
  • Emotions: Irritable, content, weepy etc.
  • Dreams: Writing down your dreams improves your memory and gives you insight into your subconscious. You may want to write them down first thing in the morning when they are still fresh in your mind.
  • Weather: You may find your symptoms improve or get worse when it rains or that you feel better in the sun. This is significant information and can give insight into your condition.
  • This habit teaches you to become more aware of yourself and helps you identify patterns and changes in your well being. Realize the more information you have about your health the more accurate a diagnosis you will get so bring this health journal to your doctor’s appointments. Keep one for your children until they are old enough to do so themselves.

8. Prepare your bedroom for sleep. Good sleep is as important to your health as what you eat.

  • Discard of clutter around your bed—hide it if necessary.
  • Use bed only for sleeping and intimacy—no reading in bed.
  • If you use your bedroom as an office or for studying, separate that part of room from the sleeping area use hanging dividers, sheets, or open shelves.
  • Sleep in complete darkness. Studies have shown that women who sleep in completely dark rooms have better hormone balance. Darkness increases the release of melatonin to promote better sleep and more alert wake cycles. This means no light through the window, no night lights, and no alarm clock shining into your eyes.

Once in bed try:

9. Alternate nostril breathing:

  • Plug the right nostril and take a deep breath lasting 4 seconds through the left nostril
  • Hold for 16 seconds, or as long as you can without straining
  • Unplug the right nostril and release for 8 seconds. Take another breath through the right nostril for the count of 4, hold for 16 seconds and release on the left for 8 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
  • This will encourage nasal breathing which is important for respiratory health. Through this breathing exercise you can increase the secretion of melatonin, which is protective against cancer, reduces anxiety, promotes hormone balance and regulates day and night cycles.

10. End your day with gratitude

  • Take at least 3 seconds to find one thing in your day to be thankful for. This is a great time to congratulate yourself on incorporating these new techniques into your routine.       

“FARM”acy Prescription

The understanding of “Food as Medicine” has always had its passionate advocates, and with the emergence of Epigenetics, cutting edge science is helping to explain the cellular effects food has on our bodies. For instance, we now know that fresh foods that are local, seasonal and organic can help reduce our risk of some forms of cancer. With this knowledge comes the opportunity to make nutritional choices that impact all of your cells and leave you feeling better, as well as choices that positively impact our community and local farmers. Veggie stir-fry anyone?

This “farm”acy Rx is the list that will give you the most bang for your effort.

  • Water: drink at least 2 litres daily. Add lemon juice to your water first thing in the morning to increase bile excretion (bile is a natural laxative)
  • Try to consume 3 cups of green tea daily. In some studies it has shown to prevent breast cancer recurrence by up to 64%.
  • Add 2 tbsp of ground flaxseeds to your meals through smoothies, in salad, added to soup, or mixed with veggies.
  • Add veggies like spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, parsley or fresh mint to your smoothies.
  • Eat at least 1 organic apple a day
  • Include at least 1 portion/day of Cruciferous vegetables daily which include watercress, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, kale, arugula, kohlrabi, radish, daikon, and Bok Choy. These assist your liver in detoxification.
  • Include 1 serving/day of sulphur rich foods such as cabbage, garlic, onions, and beans which also promote liver detoxification
  • Eat 1/2 cup of beans like lentils, chickpeas, black beans, adzuki, mung, pinto or navy every day. This is the food you would most want o be stuck on desert island with for all of its nutritional value.
  • Include glutathione-containing food such asparagus, avocados and walnuts. Glutathione is the most important antioxidant for your liver.
  • Include high antioxidant foods such as berries, grapes (organic!), beets, cooked tomatoes, pomegranate and organic green tea to prevent free radical damage.
  • Include liberal amounts of turmeric, cilantro and walnuts in your diet.
  • Eat a total of at least 3 cups of vegetables daily.
  • Avoid coffee, alcohol, grapefruit juice, stomach acid blockers and antihistamines.  If you are a regular coffee reduce to 1 cup/day and try to drink only organic coffee.
  • Avoid all artificial sweeteners including aspartame, sucralose (Spenda), and acesulfame potassium. These are found in all diet products, many yogurts, gum, mints, Crystal Light water, most flavoured water and many protein bars.
  • Avoid “White” food: white bread, white pasta, white rice, white sugar
  • Avoid all fried foods including chips, fries, chicken, breaded fish
  • Only consume dairy that is organic
  • Avoid MSG. It may be listed as:

Autolyzed yeast
Calcium caseinate
Gelatin
Glutamate, Glutamic acid
Hydrolyzed protein
Monopotassium glutamate
Monosodium glutamate

Sodium caseinate
Textured protein
Yeast extract
Yeast food
Yeast Nutrient

Amped up mashed potatoes

1 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 cup cauliflower

2 tsp olive oil

2 cups cooked white beans or 1 can (19 0z) rinsed and drained

¼ cup water

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp tahini

1 tsp sea salt and ¼ tsp black pepper

Boil potatoes and cauliflower for 15 minutes or until soft. Drain. In a bowl, mash potato and cauliflower with oil. In a food processor, puree beans, water, garlic, tahini, salt and pepper to form thick paste. Transfer mixture to mashed potato and cauliflower bowl and mix until well combined. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Probiotics

What are probiotics?

Probiotics are live microorganisms, and in most cases bacteria, similar to beneficial microorganisms found in the human gut. Also called friendly bacteria or good bacteria, the good bacteria exist in contrast to bad bacteria in the body that can harm health.

What causes imbalances between good and bad bacteria?

The balance between good and bad bacteria can be compromised for many reasons.

  • Long-term use of antibiotics and other medications, including oral contraceptives and hormone therapy
  • Weakened immune system
  • High sugar and starch diet
  • Lack of anti-fungal foods such as garlic, coconut, cinnamon, turmeric, and foods with probiotics
  • Unfriendly microorganisms such as disease-causing bacteria, yeasts, fungi, and parasites
  • Elevated heavy metals

What are some types of probiotics?

Probiotics are available in foods and dietary supplements such as capsules, tablets, and powders. Foods containing probiotics include yogurt, fermented and unfermented milk, miso, tempeh, as well as some juices and soy beverages. In probiotic foods and supplements, the bacteria may have been present originally or added during preparation. Effects found from one species or strain of probiotics do not necessarily hold true for others, or even for different preparations of the same species or strain.

The bacteria often come from two groups: Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium. Within each group, different species are present such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidus. Within each species, different strains or varieties exist. A few common probiotics, such as Saccharomyces boulardii, are yeasts, which are different from bacteria.

What are the potential benefits of probiotics?

Probiotic are used to prevent and treat certain illnesses while supporting general wellness.

  • Supports the immune system
  • Protects against unhealthy intestinal bacteria associated with cancer
  • Aids digestion and absorption of food and nutrients
  • Releases enzymes to help alleviate symptoms of intestinal malabsorption
  • Supports deroxification
  • Helps elicit anti-tumor effects1

What is the history of probiotics?

Some probiotic foods date back to ancient times, such as fermented foods and cultured milk products.

Probiotics and Antibiotics

I always recommend that my patients take a high quality form of acidophilus during and after a dose of any antibiotic. Antibiotics are a useful tool for eliminating a severe infection, but they also bring with them some side effects that the acidophilus can help to counter. When we take antibiotics, they kill all bacteria in our intestines – the harmful bacteria that is infecting the body, but also the good bacteria that live there naturally. The problem with clearing all bacteria from the intestine is that this leaves you open to yeast, or other bacteria moving in.

How to choose a probiotic

When choosing your probiotics, it is important to get a high quality brand that has been continually refrigerated and is within its expiration date. Taking probiotics to repopulate your intestine is like choosing a healthy seedling for your garden. A baby plant needs to be given water and sun while in the store in order to take root properly in your garden. Probiotics are live bacteria, so they need to be refrigerated or they will die in the bottle. Many probiotic supplements have been sitting on the shelf too long and so they no longer contain live bacteria that can be “transplanted” to your intestines. Also, make sure to use probiotics at a different time of day than your antibiotic pills so that the antibiotic will not kill the good bacteria. You should also continue taking probiotics for 10-30 days after a course of antibiotics to really make sure everything gets back to normal.

Probiotics and Kids

Probiotics are useful for other health conditions in children as well. According to a systematic review of every study done on probiotics for children, probiotics have been proven to be effective in treating childhood diarrhea and eczema. In one or more of these studies, probiotics have also been successful in preventing eczema, colic, and respiratory tract infections in children. There is even evidence that probiotics may also be useful in children with Crohn’s disease, cystic fibrosis, juvenile chronic arthritis, leukemia, milk intolerance, recurrent urinary tract infections and can also be used to treat premature babies.

For More Information

  • Life Over Cancer by Keith Block, MD
  • Anticancer by David Servan-Schreiber MD, PhD
  • The Definitive Guide to Cancer, 3rd Edition: An Integrative Approach to Prevention, Treatment, and Healing by Lise Alschuler, ND and Karolyn A. Gazella

Skip the Foot Cleanses


I recently came across a study which showed the inefficacy of ionic foot baths as a method of “cleansing”. I have reposted it below for those interested.

My advice: Skip the foot baths, supplements and gimmicks and save your cash for organic produce instead.

Objective assessment of an ionic foot bath (IonCleanse®): Testing its ability to remove toxic elements from the body

Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, Vol 7 (2010), Iss.1, Art. 44

Deborah A. Kennedy, Kieran Cooley, Thomas R. Einarson, Dugald Seely

Objectives

Phase 1 Establishment of baseline &confounders

• A baseline measurement of the contribution of the ionic footbath machine to any toxic element release when both distilled and tap water were used with no feet present.

Phase 2 Assessment of the effectiveness of the removal of toxic elements

1. To determine the effectiveness of the ionic footbath’s ability to remove toxic elements through the feet of each participant;

2. To determine whether ionic footbath sessions would increase toxic element release through the urine;

3. To determine whether the ionic footbath would reduce the overall toxic burden of heavy metals, as measured through hair mineral analysis

Methods

Study Design

• A proof of principle, non-randomized, non-blinded comparative, no feet versus feet, trial.

• Ethics approval was given by Research Ethics Board of the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (CCNM)

• All participants enrolled gave written informed consent to participate in the study.

Study Duration: 12 weeks

• Clinical Trial registration no: NCT01125592

Analyses

• Independent laboratory analysis was performed by CanAlt Health Laboratory Inc. Concord ON.

• Microsoft Office Excel 2007 was used for all data manipulations and descriptive statistics.

• StatsDirect version 2.7.7 was used for the non-parametric statistics.

Discussion

• Toxic elements were present with and without feet.

• Source of the toxic elements is unknown – there are many components.

• Material testing was not performed on all the components of the footbath.

Strengths & Limitations

Strengths

• Rigorous methodology

• Multiple routes of elimination evaluated

• Independent laboratory analysis using industry accepted standards

Limitations

• Small sample size, n=6

• No materials testing performed

Conclusion

• There is no evidence to suggest that ionic footbaths promote the elimination of toxic elements from the body through the feet, urine, or hair.

Acknowledgments

• We thank all of our study participants for their time and dedication to this project.

• This research was supported by a grant from the Holistic Health Research Foundation.

• Deborah Kennedy is supported by a career development grant from the Sickkids Foundation.

• A Major Difference Inc. provided the use of an IonCleanse® SOLO™ device and all related supplies for this study but had no other involvement in the project.

• CanAlt Health Laboratory Inc. provided the water and urine analysis testing at a reduced cost, enabling us to increase the number of participants in the study.

Melon Salsa…Great Summer Food

1 small watermelon, seeded and diced
1 small cantalope, seeded and diced
1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 bunch of arugula, washed and finely chopped
1 small red onion, minced
1 small jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 Tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh basil, finely chopped
1 lime, juiced
Sea salt, to taste
 
 

 

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and salt to taste. Sere immediately.

Note: If you have leftovers, store in the refrigerator, and pour off any liquid the fruit may have given up.

Serve over grilled or bake tofu, with Brown Rice Tortilla Chips or next to yor favorite veggie burger as a refreshing
alternative to coleslaw.

Tips for a Healthy Summer

Summer’s long days, warmth and sunshine mean days at the pool, picnics and outdoor adventures. Stay safe this summer by choosing safe sunscreens, bug repellants and deodorants. And while you’re packing that beach bag, check your water bottles and picnicking gear, too.

Sunscreens

When choosing sunscreens, select products free of UV filters that can mimic estrogen such as:

  • 3-(4-methylbenzylidene)-camphor (4-MBC)
  • octyl-methoxycinnamate (OMC)
  • octyl-dimethyl-PABA (OD-PABA)
  • bexophenome-3 (Bp-3)
  • homosalate (HMS)

In addition, choose sunscreens that are free from synthetic fragrance, nanoparticles and parabens. Better still, wear a hat!

Insect Repellants

Choose products that are free of synthetic pesticides and fragrance (typically just labeled “fragrance”). Instead, use herbally-based and natural insect repellants, and consider lightweight long pants and long sleeves as a physical barrier.

Deodorant

By now you’ve probably guessed that parabens and fragrance should be on your “avoid” list. For deodorant, add aluminum to that list, too.

Food and Drink

Pack your picnic and on-the-go drinks in containers free of BPA (found in canned goods and hard plastics) and DEHP (a phthalate found in soft plastics), since food containers can be a key source of exposure to these chemicals. The best choices are stainless steel and glass.

Lisa Archer
National Coordinator of the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics
Breast Cancer Fund

“No Nut” Butter: Safe for school

Ingredients:

2 cups of raw unsalted sunflower seeds, ground (use a coffee grinder or food processor)

1 tsp of pure vanilla extract

1/3 cup of agave syrup

1 tbsp of fresh lemon juice

3 pinches of sea salt

Optional: 2 tbsp of carob powder or cacao powder for a chocolate flavor

Combine all ingredients together. To make creamier add warm water to achieve desired consistency. Toast Ezekiel bread. Use cookie cutter to cut out shape of Ezekiel bread. Spread No Nut Butter onto the bread and top with cut up banana. You can also use sliced apples, strawberries or peaches.