Calories are not the enemy

Calories are not the enemy. This may be a statement that makes many people uncomfortable. We have been inundated by the media from every angle for the past couple of decades to believe otherwise.

Processed food packages are marked “diet” “low calorie” “low fat” and marked with names like “weight watchers” “lean cuisine” enticing consumers with the false implied promise of becoming thin “if” you eat their products.

The truth is we need calories. They are one of the very reasons we eat in the first place.

What is a calorie?

A Calorie is a unit of energy. Your body runs on them. No calories = no energy = tired you!

It has been spouted by many weight loss gurus that “a calorie is a calorie” and that the math is all that counts… More calories burnt than taken in equals weight loss.

 Again, this is not the full story.

A calorie is not a calorie. They are not all created equal. The old saying “Garbage in / Garbage out” also applies.

 Why are people so fat?

The diet industry would have us believe it is because you have no will power. Because you have no will power you need things outside of yourself to help you – diet pills, shakes, appetite suppressants, this fad diet, that fad diet… Listen to me here – it is all crap.

So what is the truth?
The truth is we are being malnourished.

Yes I see you looking sideways at me, thinking “how can malnourishment be the problem when the problem is excess weight and eating too much?”

The problem starts with the soil. It no longer contains the trace minerals that used to be absorbed into our fruits, vegetables and grains. Now add to that the majority of what people eat are now GMO (genetically modified) which means they have been scientifically altered. The reason they have been altered is so that they will produce more crops faster and more resistant to bugs. Growing faster means less actual maturation and they yield less nutrition. Add to that they also cellularly produce their own pesticide internally, which we consume as well and you are eating poisonous non-nutritious vegetables and fruits and grains that can actually cause disease and severe allergic reaction in many people.

Compounding this problem is our meat supply – if you still eat meat, our livestock is being mistreated, miss fed, cooped up in hazardous conditions, and treated with high levels of antibiotics in many cases. These are not healthy animals and they do not produce healthy meats.

People are not cooking for themselves at home as in decades past. Fast food, restaurants, boxed and packaged items are the norm. Processing, preservatives, canning, all of it leeches the nutrition out of our foods leaving us eating essentially dead food. We are what we eat… and we are fast becoming a nation of living dead humans.

When we eat nutritionally deficient foods our bodies give us the cue to eat more because what we just ate frankly did not make the cut.

That is where over eating comes into play. You aren’t weak. You are legitimately hungry for real food and nutrition and your body is screaming for you to help it. The problem is that most don’t recognize the problem and keep on with more servings of yet more nutritionally deficient foods. This leads to weight gain.

When you eat actual organic non-gmo fresh foods you are getting not just calories. You are getting vitamins, nutrients and actual sustenance. When your body receives this? You stop being hungry as it has found what it was searching for.

When you eat good live nutritious foods from the earth that have not been messed with by science or processing you find that you really don’t need to count calories. Your body will naturally work with you and stop eating when you are full and have had enough.

 

Recommendations:

-Drink as close to a gallon of non fluoridated water daily

-Add in ½ teaspoon of Pink Himalayan Salt (this restores the 72 trace minerals missing from the soil that you need to live and be healthy) *pink salt will not raise your blood pressure, and in fact may lower it.

-Stop with the table salt entirely. Just throw it out.

-Eat organic, local, non gmo veggies, fruits and grains sparingly as much as possible.

-Limit meats, and do free range grass fed when possible.

-Eggs, same thing – organic free range, cage free

-Drink water with fresh squeezed lemon or lime upon waking daily

-Eat when you are hungry. Follow your body’s cues… small meals/healthy snacks 3-4-5 times a day is great.

-And of course get out there and move. Be active.

 

Enjoy your food. Food and calories are not the enemy.. They are here for us to take pleasure in. “Everything I eat turns to health and beauty!”

If you aren’t sure where to start I suggest The Earth Diet. www.theearthdiet.org

 

 

 

 

 

JELL-O No! Why This dessert is anything but healthy

Jell-O

It’s colorful, wiggly and fun. It is one of the most versitile creative foods on the market. You can make jell-o molds, jell-o shots, jell-o gigglers, parfaits, mix flavors, colors, it is essentially a fruit party in a box. Jell-o has been a favorite of kids and adults alike since the brand was founded in 1897.

Gelatin itself dates back to as early as the 1400’s. It is a protein produced from collagen that comes out of animal bones and connective tissues when they are boiled. It became popular during the Victorian era especially among the upper crust of society. In its original form it was time consuming to produce until 1845 when a patent for powdered gelatin was issued. This made it more readily accessible to the general public. It wasn’t long after that that flavors were added and a dessert treat known as Jell-O was founded.

Modern day Jell-o is primarily chemical…

Lets take a look:

Ingredients:

-Sugar – Sugar has been linked to obesity, and suspected of, or fully implicated as a cause in the occurrence of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, dementia, macular degeneration, and tooth decay. It has highly addictive properties. Much of the sugar produced is genetically modified.

-Gelatin is a complex mixture of proteins derived from partial hydrolysis of collagen extracted from animal hides and bones. It has little nutritional value. Though we must add that gelatin aides digestion and has been successfully used in the treatment of many intestinal disorders. The reason of the beneficial effect on digestions is because gelation is a hydrophilic colloidal substance. This means that it attracts and holds liquids. It facilitates digestion by attracting digestive juices to food in the gut and by distributing digestive action evenly through all the food. Consuming good amounts of gelatin with every meal greatly reduces the digestive stress resulting from the consumption of processed and cooked food or from sub-optimal digestive function. Gelatin also improves digestibility of beans and legumes, grains, dairy and meat protein. HEALTHY SUGGESTION: buy PLAIN GELATIN and Mix it with your favorite Juice. Allow it to set, and POOF you have homemade jello without all the chemicals.

-Adipic Acid (pH control agent; Flavoring agent; Preservative, controls tartness) It increases shelf life. The FDA cautions to not ingest more than 227 grams per 100lbs of body weight daily.

Contains less than 2% of:

-Natural and Artificial Flavor – As “Natural” remains undefined by the FDA this can contain pretty much anything.

-Disodum Phosphate and Sodium Citrate (Flavoring agent; Emulsifier; Texturizer; pH control agent) It is an inorganic salt.

-Fumaric Acid (for tartness)

-Red 40, Blue 1 (and other assorted colors) – new studies now show synthetic preservatives and artificial coloring agents aggravate ADD & ADHD symptoms. Several major studies show academic performance increased and disciplinary problems decreased in large non-ADD student populations when artificial ingredients, including artificial colors, were eliminated from school food programs. Many of these colors include levels approved by the FDA of arsenic and mercury and have been banned in the European Union.

-BHA (preservative) Though the FDA recognizes it as GRAS (generally recognized as safe), The National institute of Health says it’s “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen.” It has been linked to cancer and has been banned in many countries.

And alternately – in sugar free jell-o the sweetener replacing sugar is:

-Aspartame (Phenylketonurics contains Phenylalanine) Created from the excretions of genetically modified bacteria.
What’s in it: Phenylalanine, aspartic acid and methanol. Reported side effects: Headaches, fibromyalgia, anxiety, memory loss, arthritis, abdominal pain, nausea, depression, heart palpitations, irritable bowel syndrome, seizures, neurological disorders, vision problems, brain tumors and weight gain.

– Acesulfame Potassium is a potassium salt containing methylene chloride, a known carcinogen.
Reported side effects: Long-term exposure to methylene chloride can cause nausea, headaches, mood problems, impairment of the liver and kidneys, problems with eyesight and possibly cancer. Acesulfame-K may contribute to hypoglemica.

-Nutritional Content
Fat Free
70 calories Regular / 10 calories sugar free
19 grams of sugar carbs / 0 net carbs sugar free
40-55 milligrams of sodium
2 grams of protein / 1 gram of protein sugar free
No nutrients or vitamins

Why on earth this is fed to people in hospitals on a regular basis is beyond me. Not only does it have no nutritional content and barely any energy from calories, but it also contains numerous chemicals which – though FDA approved – are shown to harm the body.

The conclusion? Jell-o may be fun, but it most certainly is not healthy.

 

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jell-O
http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/top-number-most-dangerous-artificial-sweeteners.html
http://www.labelwatch.com/prod_results.php?pid=142505
http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/j-ello.htm
http://www.ehow.com/facts_5137568_nutritional-value-jello.html
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12055324
http://www.livescience.com/36424-food-additive-bha-butylated-hydroxyanisole.html

Published also on naturalnews.com/blogs/author/sarahbarendse and drleonardcoldwell.com as well as HCBL.com/blog

Agave Nectar – A Safer Sweetener Alternative?

Agave is quickly making a rise in popularity among sweetener choices as more and more people realize just how dangerous artificial sweeteners are to our health. But is agave actually better for you?

At approximately 60 calories per tablespoon (compared to 40 for sugar) it is also nearly twice as sweet so most people will not use as much.

Most agave sweeteners are produced from the blue agave plant. But what part of the plant are we consuming? The core of the plant contains sweet “honey water,” the substance used to make syrup (and, when fermented, to make tequila).

Miel de Agave (traditional agave syrup) is made by boiling honey water sap from the core of the plant for a couple hours reducing the water content. This is the same way Maple Syrup is made. This still retains the nutrition found in the plant itself; unfortunately this is not how Agave Nectar is made.

Although agave starts out as pure, the form you can buy in stores has been processed.

Agave “Nectar” is what is widely marketed. It is made from the giant root bulb, not the core. The principal component of the root is starch – it’s a complex carbohydrate called inulin, which is technically a highly indigestible fiber. It does not have a sweet taste. The process by which agave glucose and inulin are converted into “nectar” is similar to the process in which cornstarch is converted into HFCS. The agave starch is subject to an enzymatic and chemical process that converts the starch into fructose-rich syrup —anywhere from 70 percent fructose and higher according to the agave nectar chemical profiles posted on agave nectar websites.

Nutritionally agave once processed isn’t any healthier than high fructose corn syrup or sucrose (Karo syrup). They offer no health benefits and eating them puts you at a higher likely hood of developing visceral fat, metabolic syndrome, heart disease and diabetes.

Agave is slightly lower on the glycemic index than the other sweeteners, which has caused it to be marketed to diabetics as “friendly” sugar, but the American Diabetes Association lists agave right along with all other sweeteners and states clearly that it should be very limited in diabetic diets. Well known doctors such as Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Mercola, and Dr. Oz who once were proponents of using agave have retracted their support and now recommend alternatives.

According to Russ Bianchi, managing director and CEO of Adept Solutions, Inc., a globally recognized food and beverage development company, on the similarities between agave nectar and high fructose corn syrup:

“They are indeed made the same way, using a highly chemical process with genetically modified enzymes. They are also using caustic acids, clarifiers, filtration chemicals and so forth in the conversion of agave starches into highly refined fructose inulin that is even higher in fructose content than high fructose corn syrup.”

Other Reasons to avoid Agave

Poor Quality Control

Pesticides residue and multiple reported incidences of cutting with corn syrup

Saponins – Agave is high in saponins, which are a toxic steroid derivative, capable of disrupting red blood cells and producing diarrhea and vomiting. There is also a possible link between saponins and miscarriage by stimulating blood flow to the uterus. Pregnant women should not use agave.

Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) – Some agave syrups contain a contaminant called hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF, also called 5-hydroxymethyl furfural), an organic heat-formed compound that arises in the processing of fructose — in both agave syrup and HFCS. HMF has potential toxic, mutagenic and carcinogenic effects. HMF is EXTREMELY toxic to honey bees, which is a problem since commercial beekeepers feed HFCS to the bees to stimulate honey production when field-gathered nectar sources are scarce.

Agave may start out as natural – but what you are buying in that bottle is a broken down, over processed and unhealthy choice.

Better choices would be: Raw organic honey, Coconut Palm Sugar, Maple Syrup, Stevia and Maple Sugar.

Sources:
http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-truth-about-agave
http://blog.doctoroz.com/dr-oz-blog/agave-why-we-were-wrong

Agave Nectar: Good or Bad?

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/03/30/beware-of-the-agave-nectar-health-food.aspx

Also published on Natural News, HCBL, and Dr. LeonardColdwell.com