Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas without sugar!

My hubby rocks!  See recipes..

I have to admit.
I NEVER thought I would still be on this diet at Christmas.
When I started it on July 23, I had the likes of about 90 days in my mind.
Christmas day fell on 157 days.
One hundred fifty-stinkin' seven days.

I have to admit.
I have had a bitter angry heart these past few weeks.
All the stories of Christmas goodies, dozens of cookies being decorated, the stores loaded with sweets.....well.....were almost more than I could handle.  I knew it was going to be ONLY through the mighty power of God that I would get through this holiday without partaking of any of my traditional Christmas delights.

Yes this is a cake! 
It all starts with Jackson's birthday being 2 days before Christmas.  We had his party this year on the 18th and the cake was incredible......see for yourself.  I had to hold it all the way to the party in my lap, all the while feeling sure that the sugar from the cake was seeping into my pores and yeast were multiplying faster than we were driving!  One of the boys at the party can not have sugar either.  He looked at the cake and said,"Boy, I sure wish I could have some of that cake".   I put my arms around his shoulders and replied," I am right there with you.  

But we both know it LOOKS way better than it would FEEL to us if we actually did eat it."
 It felt nice to not be alone "in my suffering" for once.

Forward to Jackson's actual birthday, December 23.  His favorite place to eat since he was 3 is Kanki.  I am trying to figure out if there is anything there I can eat.  Most likely not. So, I thought ahead and heated up some of my hamburger soup to take with me.  When they went around to take each order, I told the waitress I couldn't eat anything... that I had brought my own.  She seemed quite puzzled and felt like she had to write something down for me.  "Just water,  please."

I am at the Kanki ordering water. This just can't be right.

Trying to remember that this day is about my son and not me....I focus on watching him enjoy his favorite restaurant.
Kanki with Aunt Ji-Ji, Grandma and Grandpa Bundy
The fried rice gets cooked and served....
The steak and chicken doused with soy sauce...
The salad with that yummy ginger dressing....

You thought I was kidding!
Me?  I pull out my tupperware bowl of soup.  
Funny thing.
Usually after eating at Kanki I am so miserable I can hardly move.  Not to mention the bathroom is often occupied by at least 1/2 of our family.
I left feeling no such misery.  I felt a bit sorry for myself that I didn't get to eat like everyone else.  But that feeling went away much faster than the belly ache would have!

For supper we ate at Golden Yeast Roll Golden Coral.  Another of Jackson's favorites.
Me?  I got a salad with oil and salt.
Funny thing.
Usually after eating at Golden Yeast Roll  Golden Coral I am so miserable I can hardly move.  Not to mention the bathroom is often occupied by at least 1/2 our family.
I left feeling no such misery.  I felt a bit sorry for myself because I didn't get to stuff my face eat like everyone else.  But that feeling went away much faster than the belly ache would have!

Christmas Eve at my parent's house we have had a tradition for as long as I can remember.
Garfield's dream dinner.
French bread dripping in butter.
Salad that no one eats that is very healthy.

Me?  I took my big bowl of hamburger soup.
Was it hard to pass the french bread around the table and not eat any?  You bet!  I even had twinges of bitterness stirring in my heart.  How can I not eat lasagna?  It's tradition for pete's sake!
Since I am severely lactose intolerant but don't care, our traditional Christmas Eve dinner leaves my belly rumbling and me feeling rather miserable.
Funny thing.
No post dinner rush to the bathroom.  No post dinner bloating.  I felt a bit sorry for myself but that feeling went away faster than the diarrhea would have.


Off to the Christmas Eve service at church we go where in the middle they serve yummy sticky buns and hot apple cider.  I could care less about the apple cider but Christmas Eve at Providence is all about the sticky buns!
I was actually feeling anxious about this sticky situation.
It was part of the service after all.
It was at church.
Couldn't God just let me off the hook this one time?
Couldn't He just make the sugar NOT affect my body?
No....a sticky bun is a sticky bun....even at church.

As I passed the basket by, I was overcome with the delicious smell of the sugar and cinnamon.  We are talking about probably 700 sticky buns in one room here people!
"FOCUS on the music!"
I had to keep telling  myself.
"FOCUS on Jesus.  It's the reason you are here!"
No it's not!  It's for the sticky bun!

I made it through another event surrounded by food.
But it was not over yet.
Christmas day was still to come!

My parents and Jeff's sisters came over for our traditional Christmas morning feast.  I cooked eggs, sausage, bacon, home made waffles, biscuits.  I ate only the first 3 on the list. Then made a fruit smoothie.  I salivated over the waffles and biscuits.  I dreamed of the day I might have them again.  I remember what my belly usually looked like after our Christmas morning feast.  It resembled the same as when I was 8 months pregnant with my children.  

The real challenge was yet to come.  You see, every year that I can remember....oh...let's just go ahead and say 35 years.....I have anticipated the day when I would open my stocking at my parent's house.  Yes, there was always the nice envelope with money.  But that was not nearly as enticing as the bags of peanut M&M's, Hershey's miniatures, and Reece Cups that were found in my stocking.  I lived for this!  I know...it's just M&M's.  
I can have them any time of year.
But they were always in my stocking.  Tradition. I love my traditions.

This year my stocking had money.   
Yes, this is a fake happy smile.
No M&M's.  Not even one piece of candy.
Did my dad Santa REALLY not give me my candy?!  

Nope.  No candy in there.  Just a bag of blueberries and strawberries.


I watched as my children got a few pieces of candy in their stocking.  Grandpa Santa did the right thing by not putting too much in there.  Grandpa Santa knows how hard I have worked on this diet.  

Peanut M&M's will not have their victory over me.

Almond meal bread
We finish our Christmas with a lovely supper.  The usual was served, sorta.  The usual was eaten.....expect by me, of course.  There was plenty of fresh turkey, green beens, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, ham, and the best of all...Parker House Yeast Rolls.....2 packages to be exact.  I brought over my almond meal bread as a substitute.  It doesn't even come close to the melting hot buttery yeast roll in my mouth.  Kinda like a hot Krispy Kreme donut.  There is really just no substitute.

Yeast rolls have always been a part of nice dinners.
Yeast rolls are tradition.
Traditions sometimes have to change. 

So....you see...I survived the holidays without sugar, yeast, Kanki, Golden Coral, mashed potatoes, sticky buns, peanut M&M's, green been casserole, chocolate pie, birthday cake, cookies, pancakes, waffles, biscuits, yeast rolls.....I was not happy.  
In fact, one might say I was a little grumpy at times.
I have to admit.
I complained. 
I moaned.
I grumbled.
I pouted.
Funny thing.
Usually after all that Christmas food I feel miserable, bloated, depressed, in the bathroom quite a bit.
I still felt sorry for myself a bit.
But that feeling went away much faster. Faster  than it would have normally taken to get back into my pants I was wearing at the beginning of the holiday.
This year I didn't have to worry about unbuttoning my pants after a meal.
I lost a few pounds.
What was that?
Came out on the other side stronger and healthier not stuffed and miserable.

That made it all worth it.


Monday, December 27, 2010

The truth about candida....from a doctor herself

What is the Truth About Candida?

Candida Albicans is a yeast organism which peacefully coexists in and with many people when it is present in modest amounts. When circumstances lead to the excessive growth of candida in the body, one can develop myriad symptoms of chronic illness. The conditions of overgrowth is called Candidiasis.
The numerous problems which can result from this are called Candida Related Complex or Candida Colonization/Hypersensitivity Syndrome.

What frustrates me is that though there is a great deal of information written on this subject, traditional physicians are not paying any attention to it. 

This creates tremendous confusion for those suffering from this problem. 

Those patients who seek consultation from physicians who acknowledge and diagnose candida are met with scoffing and disbelief when they report this to their more traditional physician.

Why all the misunderstanding? Because most doctors only recognize a brief vaginal "yeast" infection known as monilia, a brief oral "yeast" infection known as thrush, or a serious life threatening "systemic candidiasis" found only in those with severe immune deficiency such as in Aids patients.

But these doctors fail to recognize that the same fungal overgrowth which can occur in the mouth or vagina can occur in any mucous membranes in the body. 

This includes the entire gastrointestinal tract, the sinuses, the ears , nasopharynx, and entire respiratory system, & the genitourinary tract. And of course, fungal overgrowth can occur on the skin and under the finger and toenails. Furthermore this may not be the short-lived condition they attempt to treat with 1-3 days of antifungal medicine.
Some people develop a short term fungal overgrowth related to antibiotic treatment which can be readily cleared with a few days of meds. Yet a larger number suffer from Chronic Candidasis which is a far more complicated situation.

I have seen published figures that this is as high as 80 million Americans. I don't know how they got those figures, but I know I have seen it frequently in my patients for many years and I and family members have been previous victims of Chronic Candidiasis. I got my start by being a sugarholic for many younger years and promiscuously using antibiotics for the frequent sore throats I was getting during the rigourous hours of Medical school and training. 

Then, they knew very little about it, so I grappled for years before the problem was taken care of --by me. 

So I am particularly peeved when doctors say it doesn't exist.

What Predisposes You To Chronic Candida Overgrowth?
Recurrent antibiotic use, steroid drugs, use of acid blockers, birth control pills, excess sugar and refined carbohydrate intake, alcohol, diabetes, decreased immune function, severe chronic stress, and familial factors are the main predisposers to chronic candida.

What Are The Symptoms?
Anyone who has and knows they have chronic candida knows how many different symptoms can be stirred up. Unfortunately, most who have this disorder are unaware of it.

Such individuals may crave sugar, breads, carbohydrates and alcohol -- though they are often alcohol intolerant. They may be bothered by the smell of tobacco smoke and more symptomatic when exposed to chemicals, such as household chemicals, perfumes. They may feel worse in damp muggy locations and not infrequently develop inhalant mold allergies.
  • General symptoms may be fatigue, drowsiness, muscle aches, weakness, or tension, joint pain or swelling, dizziness, loss of balance, incoordination, fluid retention and tissue swelling, numbness, burning or tingling.
  • Cognitive/emotional symptoms may be a sense of spaciness or mental fog, difficulty concentrating, poor memory, depression, anxiety, frequent mood changes, and irritability.
  • Head symptoms may be headache, nasal congestion or postnasal drip, nasal itching, chronic sinusitis, visual changes, burning, tearing, or itching eyes, fluid in ears, ear pain and congestion, recurrent ear infections, draining, itching ears, sore or dry throat or mouth, and scalp lesions.
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms may be constipation or diarrhea, bloating, belching, and flatulence, indigestion, heartburn, esophagitis, bad breath, & mucous in the stools.
  • Respiratory symptoms can be persistent cough, pain or tightness in the chest, wheezing, or shortness of breath.
  • Genitourinary symptoms can be genital itching, burning, or irritation, loss of sexual feeling, thick white lumpy vaginal discharge, painful intercourse, menstrual cramps, urinary urgency or frequency, burning on urination, PMS, endometriosis, prostatitis, and impotency.
  • Skin symptoms can be rashes and itching, especially in areas which are moist and get little air circulation. Sometimes there are fingernail and toenail fungal infections.
Why So Many Kinds of Symptoms?
This is a logical question and the reason the manifestations can be so widespread is complex. Some of the symptoms are related to local inflammation of the mucous membranes caused by the overgrowth of the candida yeast.

Then the candida organisms can produce 79 different toxins which can cause other inflammatory responses anywhere in the body. Most notable of these is acetaldehyde which is the same chemical to which alcohol is metabolized. These chemical overloads may directly induce symptoms, as well as chronically affecting the system so that chemical hypersensivity reactions occur. The toxic metabolites further suppress the immune system which may already be compromised.
The individual may become allergic to the candida organism, so that reaction is added and also may become allergic to other foods and inhalant molds.
The inflammation and production of chemicals in the GI tract alter the intestinal membranes making them allow particles to pass into the system which would ordinarily be blocked. This increased intestinal permeability is one of the root causes of delayed food hypersensivity reactions, so food allergy symtpoms get added to the list.
Most serious of all are the autoimmune and endocrine disorders which may develop after years of significant chronic candidiasis. Decreased adrenal, thyroid, parathyroid, and ovarian functioning may also be associated with autoimmune disorders of those glands.
Other associated disorders may be hair loss, vitiligo, malabsorption, chronic hepatitis, dental enamel dysplasia, and disorders of the thymus gland.

This is why I am appalled by those doctors who fail to responsibly look in to this matter.

How Do You Treat Candida?
The most critical part of treatment is dietary change. There must be no sugar, honey, molasses, corn syrup, white flour products, fruit juices, dried fruits, melons, yeast, moldy cheeses or foods, or alcohol. One must read labels to be stringent. The allergy rotation diet doubles as an anti-candida diet if you delete melons and dried fruits.
Unfortunately those prone to chronic candida are also prone to relapse if they stop their dietary program and complete wellness may require life- time dietary modifications.
It is also necessary to eliminate the predisposing factors listed earlier in this news as much as possible.

What about Drugs versus Natural Antifungals?
Depending upon the severity of the blood test and stool findings, I am prone to prescribing antifungal medication, which may need to be taken relatively long term in more severe cases. Those medicines are Nystatin capsules or powder ( not the tablets), Nizoral, Diflucan, and Sporonox. The last 2 are very expensive.

Additionally there are a number of natural antifungal agents I may recommend. However, one reason I recommend the meds is that often when I do order the culture and sensivity the candida is resistant to many of the natural items, except for something called Tannins and grapefruit seed extract. But with milder cases, where there is no culture and sensivity we opt for the natural items.

It is important to restore the normal acidophilus and bifidus organism in the GI tract which are killed with antibiotics and predispose to candida.

If there is a situation of low stomach acidity , betaine HCL needs to be added as the candida organisms thrive best in an alkaline environment. You want to make an inhospitable neighborhood for them. If food allergies have developed, further digestive enzyme support may be needed.

It is also helpful to support the immune system with thymus fractions.

Author Profile: Priscilla Slagle, M.D. is in the private practice of Nutritional/Functional Medicine and Psychiatry in Palm Springs, California. She has helped thousands overcome the effects of stress, low moods, depression and a variety of chronic symptoms and diseases. Dr. Slagle is a pioneer in the Alternative Medicine Field and one of the foremost experts on the prevention and treatment of conditions by incorporating vitamins, minerals, amino acids, herbs, natural hormones and other natural substances in her practice.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Q&A about corn, fungus, mycology and mycotoxins with Deborah Kirby

Q:"if the corn has fungus in it why can't the fungus be killed during heating before you eat it?"

A: It can.... it is the mycotoxins that can't b/c they are not "alive" to begin with --- they are the pee and poop by-products... and are seriously toxic....it isn't the fungi that are heat resistant. What is heat resistant are the mycotoxins Since such by-products are not "living" to begin with, they can't be killed -- even at high temps such as the likes of autoclaves, but are so named ("myco" meaning fungi, "toxin" meaning poison) because they are highly toxic to living beings.

Q: "but if you kill the fungus BEFORE you eat it, then you are not getting the mycotoxins, right?"

A:  Yes, you are getting the mycotoxins that were there prior to killing of the fungus. The fungus is there. Doesn't matter that you kill it. If it was residing there... it left mycotoxins behind as it most certainly did eat while living...

Q:  "so fungus is not the "real" problem in the corn but the mycotoxins it leaves behind which CAN'T be killed"

A:  Sort of -- if the fungi wasn't there to begin with -- then there would be no duplicating of its DNA with the corn and there wouldn't be mycotoxins to contend with... so fungi are still the root .. but their by-products (mycotoxins) are just as much of a nuisance.

Q:  "the fungus can be killed but not the mycotoxins?" 

A:  correct
 Both fungi and mycotoxins do harm to the body. Most -- with the exception of cooked products -- fungi in the body are living. They are taken in through either breathing or eating. In all cases, mycotoxins are present. You can drastically limit your exposure to both fungi and mycotoxins by drastically limiting your grain/carb intake. (Recall carbs are fungi's number one food choice.)

Q: " why can't a new kernel of corn be made that does NOT have fungus in it?"

A:  the fungi "discovered" a way to replicate itself along with the corn's DNA... so it no longer just lives at the surface -- it is now in the core of the corn kernel. There is no way for any "new" corn to be produced without already being universally contaminated by fungus.

Q: "How can I find out about universally contaminated foods?"

A:  Anyone interested can google "universally contaminated corn" and get more than a fair share of reading material on the subject. I strongly encourage education on these subjects. Documented research has shown corn (and other grains) to be universally contaminated. To get you started, look into Dr. AV Costantini's work (past director of W.H.O, World Health Organization). He has a plethora of research material on the subject of mycology (the study of fungi).

Q: "Why do most doctors not look for fungal overgrowth as the source of many chronic illnesses?"

A:  Mycology is the most overlooked subject in medical school. As a scientist, I have looked into this topic for well over ten years, and have seen numerous people recover from a wide range of illnesses by going after fungi within the body. For me, sufficient evidence that is time-tested substantiates the validity that fungi are at the root of many many diseases.
I am not anti-doctor -- nor anti-medicine. They have their proper places. 
But I am a firm believer that too many people eat without a thought to the consequences. 
Hippocrates said, "Let food be your medicine, and medicine be your food." I utterly and completely agree. 

But if there is one thing I firmly believe and have seen much evidence to support, it is that fungi are a very very real enemy to the human body, and they cause all manner of symptoms and diseases.

Start digging... you will be amazed at what you discover.

The dangers of soy lecithin.....read your labels...it's everywhere!

From the article:

Soy Lecithin: How It Negatively Affects 
Your Health And Why You Need To Avoid It

Soy Lecithin has been lingering around our food supply for over a century. It is an ingredient in literally hundreds of proceesed foods, and also sold as an over the counter health food supplement. Scientists claim it benefits our cardiovascular health, metabolism, memory, cognitive function, liver function, and even physical and athletic perfomance. However, most people don't realize what soy lecithin actually is, and why the dangers of ingesting this additive far exceed its benefits.

Lecithin is an emulsifying substance that is found in the cells of all living organisms. The French scientist Maurice Gobley discovered lecithin in 1805 and named it "lekithos" after the Greek word for "egg yolk." Until it was recovered from the waste products of soybean processing in the 1930s, eggs were the primary source of commercial lecithin. Today lecithin is the generic name given to a whole class of fat-and-water soluble compounds called phospholipids. Levels of phospholipids in soybean oils range from 1.48 to 3.08 percent, which is considerably higher than the 0.5 percent typically found in vegetable oils, but far less than the 30 percent found in egg yolks.

Out of the Dumps
Soybean lecithin comes from sludge left after crude soy oil goes through a "degumming" process. It is a waste product containing solvents and pesticides and has a consistency ranging from a gummy fluid to a plastic solid. Before being bleached to a more appealing light yellow, the color of lecithin ranges from a dirty tan to reddish brown. The hexane extraction process commonly used in soybean oil manufacture today yields less lecithin than the older ethanol-benzol process, but produces a more marketable lecithin with better color, reduced odor and less bitter flavor.

Today lecithin is ubiquitous in the processed food supply. It is most commonly used as an emulsifier to keep water and fats from separating in foods such as margarine, peanut butter, chocolate candies, ice cream, coffee creamers and infant formulas. Lecithin also helps prevent product spoilage, extending shelf life in the marketplace. In industry kitchens, it is used to improve mixing, speed crystallization, prevent "weeping," and stop spattering, lumping and sticking. Used in cosmetics, lecithin softens the skin and helps other ingredients penetrate the skin barrier. A more water-loving version known as "deoiled lecithin" reduces the time required to shut down and clean the extruders used in the manufacture of textured vegetable protein and other soy products.
In theory, lecithin manufacture eliminates all soy proteins, making it hypoallergenic. In reality, minute amounts of soy protein always remain in lecithin as well as in soy oil. Three components of soy protein have been identified in soy lecithin, including the Kunitz trypsin inhibitor, which has a track record of triggering severe allergic reactions even in the most minuscule quantities. The presence of lecithin in so many food and cosmetic products poses a special danger for people with soy allergies.

The Making of a Wonder Food
Lecithin has been touted for years as a wonder food capable of combating atherosclerosis, multiple sclerosis, liver cirrhosis, gall stones, psoriasis, eczema, scleroderma, anxiety, tremors and brain aging. Because it is well known that the human body uses phospholipids to build strong, flexible cell membranes and to facilitate nerve transmission, health claims have been made for soy lecithin since the 1920s. Dr. A. A. Horvath, a leading purveyor of soybean health claims at the time, thought it could be used in "nerve tonics" or to help alcoholics reduce the effects of intoxication and withdrawal. In 1934, an article entitled "A Comfortable and Spontaneous Cure for the Opium Habit by Means of Lecithin" was written by Chinese researchers and published in an English language medical journal.
Lecithin, though, did not capture the popular imagination until the 1960s and 1970s when the bestselling health authors Adelle Davis, Linda Clark and Mary Ann Crenshaw hyped lecithin in their many books, including Let’s Get Well, Secrets of Health and Beauty and The Natural Way to Super Beauty: Featuring the Amazing Lecithin, Apple Cider Vinegar, B-6 and Kelp Diet.
Lecithin did not become a star of the health food circuit by accident. Research took off during the early 1930s, right when lecithin production became commercially viable. In 1939, the American Lecithin Company began sponsoring research studies, and published the most promising in a 23-page booklet entitled Soybean Lecithin in 1944. The company, not coincidentally introduced a health food cookie with a lecithin filling known as the "Lexo Wafer" and a lecithin/wheat germ supplement called Granulestin. In the mid 1970s, Natterman, a lecithin marketing company based in Germany, hired scientists at various health clinics to experiment with lecithin and to write scientific articles about it. These "check book" scientists coined the term "essential phospholipids" an inaccurate term since a healthy body can produce its own phospholipids from phosphorous and lipids.
In September 2001, lecithin got a boost when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized products containing enough of it to bear labels such as "A good source of choline." Producers of soy lecithin hope to find ways to help the new health claim lift demand for lecithin and increase prices in what has been a soft market. Eggs, milk and soy products are the leading dietary sources of choline, according to recent research conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and at Duke University.

Genetically Modified
One of the biggest problems associated with soy lecithin comes from the origin of the soy itself. The majority of soy sources in the world are now 
genetically modified (GM). Researchers have clearly identified GM foods as a threat to the environment, pollution of soils and a long-term threat to human health with links to of the world with unnatural genetic material that may have unknown long-term consequences with links to decreased fertility, immunological alterations in the gut and the exacerbation and creation of allergies.

Genetically engineered soy contains high concentrations of plant toxicants. 

The presence of high levels of toxicants in the GM soy 
represent thousands of plant biochemicals many of which have been shown to have toxic effects on animals.

Unfermented Soy Sources 

The manufacture of soy lecithin is also typically confined to unfermented sources because it is quicker and cheaper to make.
Unfermented soy products are rich in enzyme inhibitors. Enzymes such as amylase lipase and protease are secreted into the digestive tract to help break down food and free nutrients for assimilation into the body. The high content of enzyme inhibitors in unfermented soybeans interferes with this process and makes carbohydrates and proteins from soybeans impossible to completely digest. 

Unfermented soy has been linked to digestive distress, immune system breakdown, PMS, endometriosis, reproductive problems for men and women, allergies, ADD and ADHD, higher risk of heart disease and cancer, malnutrition, and loss of libido.