Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Celiac Disease

Why Haven't Infertile Couples Been Told These Facts?
Posted by: Dr. Mercola
February 23 2010 | 106,819 views

Millions of people have celiac disease, but most don’t know they have it, in part because symptoms can be so varied. It is an often overlooked digestive disorder that causes damage to the small intestine when gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye, is eaten.
Infertility seems to be more common in women with untreated celiac disease. Other gynecological and obstetrical problems may also be more common, including miscarriages and preterm births.
For men, problems can include abnormal sperm -- such as lower sperm numbers, altered shape, and reduced function. Men with untreated celiac disease may also have lower testosterone levels.
The good news is that with proper treatment with a gluten-free diet and correction of nutritional deficiencies, the prognosis for future pregnancies is much improved.


  New York Times February 3, 2010

Dr. Mercola's Comments
Celiac disease -- which prevents your body from properly digesting gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley – may be far more common than previously thought. A decade ago, it was believed that celiac disease affected just one in 10,000 Americans.
But a 2004 report by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) estimates that as many as one in every 133 Americans have it. That equates to roughly 2 million people suffering from gluten intolerance in the US alone.
There are many millions more that suffer from sub-clinical gluten intolerance – some estimate as many as 30 million Americans -- so there is a very real possibility that you or someone you know is affected by this.
Unfortunately, celiac disease can manifest in so many ways, it’s frequently misdiagnosed and/or mistreated. One study showed it takes an average of 11 years for patients to receive a correct diagnosis!
What is Celiac Disease?
Celiac disease (CD) is an autoimmune disease, much like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. To get the disease, you must have both a genetic predisposition plus an environmental factor that triggers the disease.
In this case, the environmental trigger is gluten.
If you have celiac disease, eating gluten triggers an autoimmune response, provoking your body to attack itself and destroy healthy tissues, especially the villi in your small intestine. This can also have a detrimental effect on your body’s ability to absorb and process nutrients.
Some of the most common symptoms of this disease process include:
• Chronic diarrhea
• Gas
• Bloating
• Acid reflux
• Constipation
Even a small amount of gluten can trigger a response.
How Celiac Disease Can Affect Your Fertility
In the New York Times article above, Dr. Sheila Crowe, a professor in the division of gastroenterology and hepatology at the University of Virginia, provides information about a slightly lesser known side effect of celiac disease, namely infertility, which can affect both men and women with the disease.
Studies from various countries indicate that fertility problems are indeed more common in women with untreated celiac disease, compared to women who do not have it.
The risk of suffering other gynecological and obstetrical problems like miscarriage or preterm birth is also higher for those with celiac disease.
In addition, other common menstrual disorders that frequently affect women with celiac disease include:
• Later onset of menstruation
• Earlier menopause
• Secondary amenorrhea (a condition in which menses starts but then stops)
These menstrual abnormalities, along with other hormonal disruptions they cause, can lead to fewer ovulations, which in turn results in a reduced chance of pregnancy.
Men with the disease, especially if it’s undiagnosed, can also face fertility problems due to:
• Abnormal sperm (reduced sperm count, altered shape, and reduced function)
• Reduced testosterone levels
How to Diagnose Celiac Disease
As Dr. Crowe recommends, it might be wise to get screened for celiac disease if you suffer from repeated miscarriages or are unable to conceive for unknown reasons – especially if you suffer any of the most common symptoms.
Just remember that symptoms can vary widely, and symptoms are easily confused with those of other diseases, such as irritable bowel syndrome, iron-deficiency anemia, or even chronic fatigue syndrome.
Fortunately, there are now more reliable blood tests that can screen for the disease, so that you’re not left guessing and wondering.
People with celiac disease have higher than normal levels of certain autoantibodies in their blood. So to diagnose celiac disease, your doctor will need to test your blood for high levels of anti-tissue transglutaminase antibodies (tTGA) or anti-endomysium antibodies (EMA).
Please keep in mind that you need to continue eating a diet containing gluten, such as breads and pastas, in order to obtain an accurate test result! If you go on a gluten-free diet prior to being tested, the results may come up negative for celiac even though you might in fact have the disease.
If the test is positive for celiac disease, a biopsy of your small intestine may be performed to confirm your diagnosis. The biopsy checks for damage to the villi, which is a sign that celiac disease is damaging your intestines.
The Case for a Low- or No-Grain Diet – Whether You Have Celiac Disease or Not
The prevalence of celiac disease is yet more evidence that contemporary humans simply aren’t equipped to consume mass quantities of starch and sugar rich foods many modern diets consists of.
Most people simply consume far too much bread, cereal, pasta, corn (a grain, not a vegetable), rice, potatoes, snacks and junk foods, with grave consequences to their health.
A diet high in grains causes insulin resistance which causes far more problems than this dangerous autoimmune response. It’s also a leading factor of obesity, which now affects a whopping two-thirds of all Americans.
Many of you are still focused on fat intake, but it’s really not the fat in the foods you eat but rather the excess carbohydrates from your processed food diet that is making you overweight and unhealthy, and contributing to epidemic levels of other diseases such as diabetes.
How to Treat Celiac Disease
In my experience, gluten intolerance can be treated quite easily by eliminating gluten and most grains from your daily diet.
It’s important to realize that gluten can be hidden in many foods including soups, soy sauce, candies, cold cuts, and various low- and no-fat products, so check the labels before you eat it.
Also watch out for malt, starches, hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP), texturized vegetable protein (TVP) and natural flavoring.
Some pharmaceuticals, vinegars and alcohol can also contain gluten.
If you have celiac disease, it’s imperative that you do not eat gluten in order to avoid further damage to your health. But it’s not only people with gluten intolerance who would benefit from avoiding grains--in my estimation over 85 percent of the population would benefit from avoiding them, and this includes even whole, organic grains.
Remember, if you stick to a diet consisting mainly of whole foods, preferably locally-grown organics, you’ll reap all the other beneficial side effects as well, such as increased energy, an enhanced mood, and a lower risk of other chronic illnesses.
Once you realize how good you can feel on a gluten-free diet, you’ll probably have no problem avoiding it and living a full, healthy life!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Probiotics:The untold truth

About 80% of your immune system lives in the pit of your gut.

To get on the track toward building a solid foundation for your best health, I believe the best place to start is where good health begins – in your digestive tract.*

And the best way I’ve found is by introducing billions of tiny microflora (good bacteria) into your digestive system through the use of high quality probiotics.*But some probiotics don’t survive your stomach’s acidity and
others get damaged in the manufacturing process.*What happens is that the good bacteria go to work keeping your entire digestive system working at its peak while boosting the health of your immune system in the process.*
How do I know? Because scientific research shows that 80% of your immune system actually lives right in your digestive tract.

Amazing, isn’t it?
But that’s not all…
A healthy and happy digestive system may also help regulate your weight, keeping your waistline slim and trim.*
That’s where high quality probiotics come in.
Recent scientific studies† also show that supplementing with probiotics may help reduce fat.*
In fact, if you’re pregnant or just had a baby, taking a probiotic supplement during your pregnancy – or starting soon after giving birth –  may help you drop that extra weight you might have gained.†*

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Coconut Almond Fudge recipe

My wife made a new recipe this week from The Maker's Diet and I wanted to share it with you because it turned out really well and I enjoyed it.

Coconut Almond Fudge

1 cup extra-virgin coconut oil
3/4 cup carob powder (or non alkalized unsweetened cocoa powder)
1/4 cup raw almond butter
1/4 cup unheated honey
1 tbsp vanilla

Place all ingredients in small saucepan and stir until melted. Spread paste on buttered parchment paper or small dish; allow to cool in refrigerator. remove and serve immediately.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Raw What?

I have always been a fan of protein shakes and fruit smoothies. As you may know we enjoy a berry smoothy packed with Perfect Food green powder made from some of the best sprouted greens available. Aside from that I enjoy a goat, almond milk or raw milk kefir protein shake about twice daily. These shakes depending on what I am feeling, as to what I put in it, but it always has raw eggs, and cocoa.

I have recently been introduced to Raw Meal shakes! I follow and distribute products for Garden Of Life so when I saw the new Raw Meal I was curious as to what it was like. I purchased some and have been using it in between my meals, as I believe strongly in "flirting" with your metabolism to keep it at optimum levels. I place this shake with my already delicious protein shake, but not at first. When I got it and read the instructions I saw that they company (GOL) recommends that you place it in water. This was not the best flavor, I mean I could have got used to it. I also knew that it would be way better for me in the protein shake, so together they went.

My first reaction was "this is like drinking mud" but the benefits and the feelings afterward were far better than I expected. My energy levels are probably as high as ever, this is because of the rate of digestion is faster. Given it's raw state, my body was able to move and digest it quite fast. That plus the great nutrients in the Raw Meal leave me feeling pretty awesome!

Here is what the break down is for protein:
Regular protein shake- 24 grams of protein
Raw Meal mixed with my protein shake - 57 grams of raw protein!

This is just protein alone, not to mention the other great raw nutrients in the shake. For those go here
Read More Here!

My conclusion is: though it may be hard to get used to, the benefits are worth the price both financially and taste wise. You just can't get a better full meal replacement anywhere.
I still feel full over an hour after having it.
Try and let me know what you think!

We have it for just $55 plus shipping.
Call or email for your today!!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Drop That Bagel!!

Food labels can tell you a lot. For instance, they can indicate how many calories, carbs, proteins and fats are found in foods. What they don’t tell you, however, is how your inflammation levels may be affected by that food.

Inflammation? You may be wondering what inflammation has to do with the foods we eat.

The answer? Plenty.

The truth is that some foods—such as foods high in omega-3s, antioxidants and other important nutrients—are better for your inflammation levels than others are. One expert in the area of foods and their inflammation-influencing abilities is Monica Reinagel, a well-known nutritional researcher.

Reinagel’s book The Inflammation Free Diet Plan provides helpful dietary guidelines for selecting foods that can support healthy inflammation levels in the body. In fact, Reinagel created the IF Rating™ system that is utilized to give an inflammation factor for various foods.

Simply put, foods with a positive rating can support healthy inflammation levels, while foods with a negative rating can foster unhealthy inflammation levels.

The foods we eat influence inflammation through chemicals called prostaglandins from the foods’ nutrients. Foods like wild fish, cruciferous vegetables, green, leafy vegetables and some spices like ginger and garlic may be especially healthy for supporting normal inflammation.

Other foods may not be particularly healthy for inflammation levels. Let’s say, for example, that a typical American breakfast includes a plain bagel (-186 on the inflammation scale), a cup of corn flakes cereal (-182), with maybe a glass of low-fat milk (-33)—perish the thought. According to Reinagel’s rating system, a breakfast like that comes in at about a -401.

If a person picks up a Caesar salad from a fast food joint (a -42 rating) and a small soda (ranging from -53 to -58 for a small order), the negative numbers begin to accumulate. Throw in chicken nuggets, french fries (a whopping -336 rating) or some pizza for dinner with a chocolate ice cream dessert and you have negative numbers that go way over the top!

Here’s a surprise. Even many “good inflammation” foods like salmon have ratings that have to do with whether they are farm raised or wild. According to Reinagel’s rating, three ounces of farm-raised Atlantic salmon weighs in at a -180, while three ounces of wild Atlantic salmon comes in at a +493.


Other foods that rank positively in supporting healthy inflammation levels include: extra virgin olive oil, broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, kale, almonds, chia seeds, walnuts, pecans, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and onions.

So, if you’re looking to support healthy inflammation levels through your diet, then you might want to rethink your food selections, including that bagel for breakfast. Maybe you’d like some fresh berries instead?

Dr. Jordan Rubin

Friday, February 5, 2010

Reasons For Avoiding Wheat Part 4

Healthy Whole Wheat Products

Ideally, one should buy whole wheat berries and grind them fresh to make homemade breads and other baked goods. Buy whole wheat berries that are grown organically or biodynamically--biodynamic farming involves higher standards than organic.34 Since these forms of farming do not allow synthetic, carcinogenic chemicals and fertilizers, purchasing organic or biodynamic wheat assures that you are getting the cleanest, most nutritious food possible. It also automatically eliminates the possibility of irradiation31 and genetically engineered seed. The second best option is to buy organic 100 percent stone-ground whole-wheat flour at a natural food store. Slow-speed, steel hammer-mills are often used instead of stones, and flours made in this way can list "stone-ground" on the label. This method is equivalent to the stone-ground process and produces a product that is equally nutritious. Any process that renders the entire grain into usable flour without exposing it to high heat is acceptable.

If you do not make your own bread, there are ready-made alternatives available. Look for organic sourdough or sprouted breads freshly baked or in the freezer compartment of your market or health food store. If bread is made entirely with l00 percent stone-ground whole grains, it will state so on the label. When bread is stone ground and then baked, the internal temperature does not usually exceed 170 degrees, so most of the nutrients are preserved.28 As they contain no preservatives, both whole wheat flour and its products should be kept in the refrigerator or freezer. Stone-ground flour will keep for several months frozen.28

Sprouting, soaking and genuine sourdough leavening "pre-digests" grains, allowing the nutrients to be more easily assimilated and metabolized. This is an age-old approach practiced in most traditional cultures. Sprouting begins germination, which increases the enzymatic activity in foods and inactivates substances called enzyme inhibitors.1 These enzyme inhibitors prevent the activation of the enzymes present in the food and, therefore, may hinder optimal digestion and absorption. Soaking neutralizes phytic acid, a component of plant fiber found in the bran and hulls of grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds that reduces mineral absorption.32 All of these benefits may explain why sprouted foods are less likely to produce allergic reactions in those who are sensitive.1

Sprouting also causes a beneficial modification of various nutritional elements. According to research undertaken at the University of Minnesota, sprouting increases the total nutrient density of a food. For example, sprouted whole wheat was found to have 28 percent more thiamine (B1), 315 percent more riboflavin (B2), 66 percent more niacin (B3), 65 percent more pantothenic acid (B5), 111 percent more biotin, 278 percent more folic acid, and 300 percent more vitamin C than non-sprouted whole wheat. This phenomenon is not restricted to wheat. All grains undergo this type of quantitative and qualitative transformation. These studies also confirmed a significant increase in enzymes, which means the nutrients are easier to digest and absorb.33

You have several options for preparing your wheat. You can use a sour leavening method by mixing whey, buttermilk or yogurt with freshly ground wheat or quality pre-ground wheat from the store. Or, soak your berries whole for 8 to 22 hours, then drain and rinse. There are some recipes that use the whole berries while they are wet, such as cracker dough ground right in the food processor. Another option is to dry sprouted wheat berries in a low-temperature oven or dehydrator, and then grind them in your grain mill and then use the flour in a variety or recipes.

Although our modern wheat suffers from a great number of indiscretions, there are steps we can take to find the quality choices that will nourish us today and for the long haul. Go out and make a difference for you and yours and turn your wheaty indiscretions into wheaty indulgences.

The Weston A. Price Foundation