My Best Life Advice

It has taken me months to start blogging. It is a much more intimidating process than I expected, easy to keep putting off. But I keep hearing, Just start, so I shall. I dedicate this first blog to Abram, who has helped me so much with this website and has been so encouraging to me in all of this. Abram asked me a couple of months ago what one piece of life advice I would give him. I was quick to answer, Always look toward God—no matter what. Over the last two months, I’ve thought back to what I told him often and have not changed my mind about it. It’s the best advice I could give. No matter what happens in your life, no matter how confusing things may seem—even if you are doubting His very existence, always look towards Him for the answers. Challenge Him. Question Him. Just keep your face turned towards Him. It will make all the difference. Look in other places, and you’ll find yourself going on rabbit trails with high price tags. And from my perspective, the outcome difference is huge. It’s the best life advice I could give anyone.  

Recommended Diet CAUSES Heart Disease

Recommended Diet CAUSES Heart Disease

Dr Michael Colgan          25 August 2013

Another prominent heart surgeon, Dr Dwight Lundell, has joined the thousands of physicians urging the US Government to reverse the huge error in current treatment of cardiovascular disease.

Using obsolete classical chemistry, 20th century medical science wrongly concluded that most heart disease results from high cholesterol and high intakes of saturated fat.(1,2)  This error spawned American dietary recommendations resulting in our current high-carbohydrate, high-polyunsaturated fat diet, plus massive overuse of statin drugs.

It’s not working.  America is a lot sicker, and fatter than 20 years ago.  In 2013, more of us will die of heart disease than ever before. The American Heart Association reports that 75 million Americans currently suffer from cardiovascular disease, which is affecting younger and younger people in greater numbers every year.

The new molecular chemistry, which became available about 2001, shows definitively that inflammation of the artery wall is the basic cause of cardiovascular disease.(1)  Cholesterol, an essential body chemical, does not cause the inflammation, but simply gets caught in it.  We know now that cholesterol does not accumulate in walls of blood vessels unless there is chronic inflammation to stick to.

Inflammation is your natural defense to foreign invaders such as toxins, bacteria, and viruses.  The cycle of inflammation is perfect to protect you. Once invaders are destroyed, the inflammation dissipates.  But, if you continually eat foods the human body was never designed to process, the inflammation is continuous, and becomes chronic.

The biggest problem is the overload of processed carbohydrates (sugar, cereals, flour and all products made from them).  Also at fault is excess consumption of processed omega-6 vegetable oils such as soybean, corn, and sunflower, allowed in processed foods to increase shelf life. Eating these foods is a slow form of poisoning.

A diseased artery is rough.  It looks like someone rubbed a scouring pad against its inside wall.  Processed carbohydrates and processed fats scour in the same way, albeit more slowly.  The repeated tiny injuries cause the body to respond continuously with inflammation.  If you spike your blood sugar several times a day, say with cereals in the morning, bread at lunch, and a sugary dessert at dinner, it’s like giving your arteries a pull-through with a Christmas tree.

You get fat too.  Whenever you eat processed carbohydrates, blood sugar spikes.  In response, your pancreas secretes insulin aiming to drive the sugar into cells to store it for energy.  Once cells are full they reject more sugar.  The rejected sugar then causes blood sugar to rise further, thereby producing even more insulin.  The extra sugar and extra insulin are promptly converted to body fat and stored in order to protect you from injury.  Follow the recommended American diet and you will grow plump as a goose.(2)

Fortunately the human system is dynamic. It changes beautifully in response to the right stuff.  You can reverse chronic inflammation, and remove chronic fat from everywhere, simply by dumping all the processed grains and sugars, and all foods with processed polyunsaturated fats.(3,4)

Use virgin olive oil, organic butter, and a good dose of the premium anti-inflammatory, curcumin, every day.(5)  Base your diet on wild fish, and organic meats, seeds and nuts, organic veges and fruits.  Not to say you can’t have a bit of flour.  It’s apple and blackberry season again and the fruit just doesn’t seem right unless it’s in a crust.

Dr Colgan’s articles are now posted on his page,

1.  Tabas I, Glass CK. Anti-inflammatory therapy in chronic disease: challenges and opportunities. Science. 2013 Jan 11;339(6116):

2.  Tahergorabi Z, Khazaei M. The relationship between inflammatory markers, angiogenesis, and obesity. ARYA Atheroscler. 2013 Jun;9(4):247-53.

3.  Colgan M. The Anti-inflammatory Athlete. American Fork, UT: Sound Concepts, 2012.

4.  Ibanez B, Vilahur G, Badimon JJ. Plaque progression and regression in atherothrombosis. J Thromb Haemost. 2007 Jul;5 Suppl 1:292-9.

5.  Aggarwal BB, Harikumar KB. Potential therapeutic effects of curcumin, the anti-inflammatory agent, against neurodegenerative, cardiovascular, pulmonary, metabolic, autoimmune and neoplastic diseases. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2009 Jan;41(1):40-59.

Gluten Damages the Brain

Gluten Damages the Brain

Dr Michael Colgan 4 Sept 2013
A ton of recent controlled studies have now proven beyond doubt that gluten damages the human brain.(1-7)  It’s not pretty, and the public should know.  Nevertheless, I am stating the facts from some of the latest scientific reviews for a different reason. 
After my last article on gluten six months ago, parents of a boy diagnosed with Asperger’s contacted me, because he exhibited symptoms described in my article.  I advised that they request gluten antibody tests by his physician.  In a month his physician had positive antibody results.  Now, five months later, on a gluten-free diet, the lad’s symptoms have disappeared, and he is entirely healthy.  If this article can do that for even one more child…
People with gluten sensitivity, can develop varying degrees of cerebellar ataxia, that is, lesions in the cerebellum of the brain that cause loss of balance, inability to coordinate gait in walking, loss of coordination of the arms and hands, and even the eyes.  They can also develop migraines, swelling of the brain, epilepsy, dementia, depression, and symptoms of Asperger’s and ADHD.
The worst part about these brain malfunctions is that they can occur without any symptoms of celiac disease, a well-known manifestation of gluten sensitivity.  We now know that brain damage by gluten can occur with or without celiac disease, and with or without any intestinal symptoms at all.
The main offenders are wheat, rye, and barley in our food supply.  The cereal grains industry, however, is mammoth business that has done everything it can to discount the evidence.  So most of the public do not yet know what medical science has known at least a decade.   What I love most about science is that the truth eventually outs.
The light-speed development of the internet makes it increasingly more difficult every day for vested interests to hide things.  We know that the evidence is getting out there because of the unprecedented growth in public demand for gluten-free foods. 
For example, a gluten-free trade show in Vancouver in 2013, planned for 5,000 visitors.  More than 25,000 showed up, and most could not even get in.  In the US alone, the gluten-free foods industry has grown from small in 2000, to a massive $3 billion a year in 2012.
There is now an explosion of controlled studies on gluten. One summary paper for example, published in 2012, in the open-access medical journal, Bio Med Central, Medicine, is a collaborative effort of 14 universities to highlight the evidence.(1) 
We now know for sure that a much larger proportion of the population suffers from gluten toxicity than previously thought.(2)  Because it manly affects people of European ancestry, many hundreds of thousands of Americans and Canadians have varying degrees of brain reactions to gluten.  These vary from intermittent headaches and brain fog to full blown dementia.
Controlled studies show that gluten is a main offender in the group of disorders now collected under the umbrella of celiac disease (CD). But it is also involved in many cases of autism, Asperger’s, and similar disorders, now collectively called autism spectrum disorders (ASD).(3-7) 
Gluten is also involved in many cases of cerebellar ataxia from damage to motor controls in the cerebellum of the brain, causing loss of balance, dizziness, and learning difficulties (3,5) 
Gluten is also involved in many cases of peripheral neuropathy (death of peripheral nerves, leading to one or several of a large group of disorders). It can also cause herpetiform dermatitis (herpes-like blistering rash mainly on elbows, forearms, and knees (3-7)
It has taken 20 years to bring to public notice that dominant foods, wheat, rye and barley can produce human disease not only of the gut but also the skin, the peripheral nerves, and the brain.  The most unfortunate aspect of the gluten problem is that a child, or an adult, can suffer several different manifestations of gluten toxicity simultaneously, and can easily be mis-diagnosed as suffering from different disorders. 
World expert on gluten toxicity, British neurologist Dr M Hadjivassiliou, has called for physicians and neurologists to learn more about gluten-caused disorders, and treat them promptly before irreversible brain damage occurs. Removing gluten from a child’s diet is much more successful than doing so later in life.
Changing our food to eliminate gluten is a big problem.  Wheat, rye, and barley, are food staples that have been intensively farmed in the US for the last 200 years.  To legislate change would destroy the livelihood of hundreds of thousands of people.  The only way to convert farming to crops with low or no content of gluten is to vote with your pocketbook.  Leave foods containing wheat, rye, and barley on the supermarket shelf.  Your brain will appreciate it.
Dr Colgan’s articles are all published on his page
And on his blog
1. Sapone A, et al. Spectrum of gluten-related disorders: consensus on new nomenclature and classification. BMC Med. 2012; 10: 13.  Published online 2012 February 7. doi: 10.1186/1741-7015-10-13  PMCID: PMC3292448
2. Bernini P, et al. Are Patients with Potential Celiac Disease Really Potential? The Answer of Metabonomics. Journal of Proteome Research, 2010; : 101213161430042 DOI: 10.1021/pr100896s
3. Hadjivassiliou M, et al. Gluten sensitivity as a neurological illness. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2002 May; 72(5): 560–563.
4. Hadjivassiliou M, et al. Dietary treatment of gluten neuropathy. Muscle Nerve. 2006 Dec;34(6):762-6.
5. Hernandez-Lahoz C, et al. Neurological disorders associated with gluten sensitivity. Rev Neurol. 2011 Sep 1;53(5):287-300.
6. Currie S, et al. Should we be 'nervous' about coeliac disease? Brain abnormalities in patients with coeliac disease referred for neurological opinion. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2012 Dec;83(12):1216-21. doi: 10.1136/jnnp-2012-303281. Epub 2012 Aug 20.
7. Bushara KO. Neurologic presentation of celiac disease. Gastroenterology. 2005 Apr;128(4 Suppl 1):S92-7.


Your Transport for Life

Your Transport For Life

Warren Buffett is the most successful investor the world has ever known. His company Berkshire Hathaway has made a return on investments of more than 500,000% since he began in the 1950s. He has beaten everyone on the S & P Index every year for the last 45 years. One share of Berkshire stock sold originally at $18. Price for one share today, 23 August 2013, is $171,400.

Buffett was by far the world’s richest man until 2006, when he gave, $31 billion, yes, GAVE 31 BILLION DOLLARS AS A GIFT, to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to fight world poverty. He continues to give them billions more every year.

He has done all this from nothing. Rejected by Harvard, he went to Columbia U, then started his business with $105,000 from seven of his friends. From such a small beginning, he has used his brilliant brain to dodge the rot of Wall Street, the crooked banks, and the crooked government mortgage institutions, and has remained an honorable and straightforward man. So I was ecstatic to be in a group that got to ask one of the leading minds in the world a face-to-face question that many of us have, “What is the best investment to make for life?”

I guess we were looking for his advice on long-term energy stocks or electronics or some other business that comes within the purview of his blindingly accurate predictions over the years. His answer, however, was quite different. But it was even more important.

Warren Buffett replied, “The best investment in life is yourself. Imagine you are 16 again, and I am going to give you a car, any car you want. But there is one condition. It is the only car you can ever have your whole life.”

Just think. If you could have only one car to transport you lifelong, you would treat it with reverence. . You would learn its manual by heart. You would change the oil and hydraulic fluid more often than stipulated. You would use only the best fuel. You would replace the tires and wipers, and seals and belts at the first sign of wear. You would likely do complete maintenance twice as often as required. You would keep it shining.

Of course, Buffett was referring to the human body, life transport for your brain. Sage advice from the best investor of all time. How well are you looking after yours?

Migraines--What Causes Them, and How You Can Best Address Them

By Dr. Mercola

I am thankful I have never had a migraine or, but migraine headaches are one of the most common health conditions in the world—more prevalent than diabetes, epilepsy and asthma combined. They're also one of the top 20 causes of disability among adults.

More than 37 million Americans suffer from migraines; nearly five million of them experiencing at least one migraine attack per month. In all, an estimated 13 percent of the world’s population suffer with migraines to a greater or lesser degree.

The condition is more prevalent among women, with about 15-18 percent of women worldwide getting them, compared to six to seven percent of men. About 60 percent of women affected have menstrual-related migraines, meaning they tend to coincide with their menstrual cycle.

Despite its prevalence, migraines are still one of the most poorly understood medical disorders out there. Part of the problem has been that the experiences of those suffering from migraines vary greatly.

Aside from throbbing, searing pain, which may or may not be one-sided, some experience “auras” prior to onset, while others do not. There may also be nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, sweating, and/or sensitivity to light, sound, and smells.

Those who have never had a migraine before can be quite frightened by the neurological symptoms, which can simulate a stroke where you start to have disturbed vision, and even short term visual loss and/or seeing spots or wavy lines, and/or tingling in your arm or leg.

Migraines May Be Linked with Abnormal Blood Vessel Structure

One long-held theory was that a migraine is caused by vascular changes in your brain, from initial blood vessel constriction and a drop in blood flow, followed by dilation and stretching of blood vessels, which activates pain-signaling neurons.

Newer research has negated this theory however, as researchers eventually determined that migraines are not preceded by constriction and decrease in blood flow, but rather by a blood flow increase of nearly 300 percent. Despite that, circulation appears normal, or even slightly reduced, once the attack is in full swing.

Most recently, a small observational study found that so-called migraineurs—people who get migraines—tend to have a different blood vessel structure in their brains compared to those who do not get migraines.

Three types of test subjects were included in the study. Out of 170 subjects, 56 had migraines with aura, 61 had migraines without aura, and 53 were included as controls.

Using Magnetic resonance angiography, the researchers examined the structure of blood vessels and the changes in cerebral blood flow, focusing on a system of arteries that deliver blood to the brain called "circle of Willis."

They found that an incomplete circle of Willis was significantly more common in those who get migraines, with or without aura, compared to the control group (73 percent and 67 percent versus 51 percent respectively).

As a result, compared to those with a complete circle of Willis, those with an incomplete circle had greater asymmetry in hemispheric cerebral blood flow. According to one of the authors of the study, Dr. John Detre, M.D., a professor of neurology and radiology:

“Abnormalities in both the circle of Willis and blood flow were most prominent in the back of the brain, where the visual cortex is located. This may help explain why the most common migraine auras consist of visual symptoms such as seeing distortions, spots, or wavy lines.”

Other Hypotheses

There are other hypotheses as well. For example, a meta-analysis of 29 genome-wide association studies recently identified five genetic regions linked to migraine onset and 12 genetic regions linked with migraine susceptibility. In addition to that, they also found a whopping 134 genetic regions that appear to heighten migraine susceptibility.

Another study published earlier this year suggests that the searing, throbbing pain that is the hallmark of a migraine may be due to overactive pain-signaling from sensory neurons in your brain.

A third hypothesis is that a migraine arises as a result of a disorder of your nervous system, most likely in your brain stem. Although most regions of your brain do not register or transmit pain signals, a network of nerves called the trigeminal nerve system does. Pain is relayed through the trigeminal network to an area in your brain stem called the trigeminal nucleus.

From there, it is conveyed to the sensory cortex in your brain, which is involved in your awareness of pain and other senses. What first activates your trigeminal nerves, setting off your migraine, however, is still under debate, but some researchers believe that a wave release of neurotransmitters across your cortex can directly stimulate your trigeminal nerves, setting off the chain reaction that ends in the transmitting of pain signals. No one hypothesis has yet emerged to explain the occurrence of migraine in all sufferers. Besides those already mentioned, other theories include:

Changes in the brain chemical serotonin. When levels drop, blood vessels including those in your brain become swollen and inflamed, which can lead to migraine pain.
A disruption of the subtle energies circulating throughout your body, along with unresolved emotional issues that manifest in your body as headaches.
Vitamin B deficiency. In one study, vitamin B6, B12, and folic acid supplements were found to produce a two-fold reduction in migraines over a six-month period. Previous studies, such as a 2004 study in the European Journal of Neurology, have also reported that high doses of B2 (riboflavin) can help prevent migraine attacks

Common Migraine Triggers

Environmental factors appear to play a significant role in triggering a migraine attack. While there are many potential triggers (and what triggers a migraine for one might not trigger it in another), the following are some of the most commonly reported:

Food and Drink: Many people experience migraines when they eat certain foods, especially: wheat, dairy, sugar, artificial preservatives or chemical additives, cured or processed meats, alcohol (especially red wine and beer), aspartame, caffeine, and MSG. Caffeine can also trigger an attack - and sometimes excess nuts   Changes in sleeping cycle: Both missing sleep and oversleeping can trigger a migraine    Hormones: Some women experience migraines before or during their periods, during pregnancy or during menopause. Others may get migraines from hormonal medications like birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy
Allergies: Including food allergies and food sensitivities, and chemical sensitivities    Stress/Post-stress: Any kind of emotional trauma can trigger a migraine, even after the stress has passed    External stimuli: Bright lights, fluorescent lights, loud noises and strong smells (even pleasant ones) can trigger a migraine
Dehydration and/or hunger: Skipping meals or fasting are also common triggers    Physical exertion: Extremely intense exercise or even sex has been known to bring on migraines    Weather changes, and/or changes in altitude

Are Food Allergies Causing Your Migraines?

Searching the medical literature in using the search terms “migraine” and “food allergies” will provide you with nearly 160 different studies11 of this kind, so do yourself a favor and don’t dismiss this potential connection. One randomized, double blind, cross-over study published in 2010 found that a six-week long diet restriction produced a statistically significant reduction in migraines in those diagnosed with migraine without aura. Some of the top migraine-inducing foods identified include:

Wheat and gluten 

Cow’s milk (including yoghurt and ice cream) 

Grain cereals  

Cane sugar







I’d advise you to avoid as many processed foods as possible, as they contain a variety of food colorings, flavors, preservatives, and other additives that might promote headaches and migraines, in addition to other food allergy symptoms. Questions that can help you determine whether or not you might have a food sensitivity or allergy include:

Do you experience bloating after meals, gas, frequent belching, or any kind of digestive problems?
Do you have chronic constipation or diarrhea?
Do you have a stuffy nose after meals?
Do you have low energy or feel drowsy after eating?

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you may want to investigate further. Keeping a detailed food diary is the easiest way to start tracking down potentially migraine-inducing foods. Keep in mind that eliminating your migraines is not the only health benefit you can reap from identifying food allergies or sensitivities. Eliminating food antigens is also critical for gut health. I’ve written extensively on this topic, as medical science is now beginning to realize just how important your gut is, not just for physical health, but emotional and psychological health as well.

One of the best things you can do if you believe you are suffering from a food allergy is to do a diet elimination challenge. Simply remove all foods that contain what you believe you are allergic to and see if your symptoms improve over the next several days. If you don’t have an idea of what foods you are allergic to, you can stop all the ones in the chart above. Keep in mind that depending on your typical migraine frequency, you may need to avoid the suspected food(s) for a few weeks in order to evaluate whether it had an effect or not.

To confirm the results, you’ll want to reintroduce the food or drink (on an empty stomach). If the suspected food is the culprit you will generally be able to feel the allergy symptoms return within an hour, although migraines can sometimes have a longer lag time than, say, bloating or drowsiness.

Beware of Aspartame and MSG

Both aspartame and MSG are notorious for causing headaches and triggering migraines. Aspartame can also trigger other neurological symptom such as visual disturbances and tingling in the extremities. I actually diagnosed my sister, who was also my office manager when I started practicing, with a migraine. She had the visual aura that is common and makes you feel like you are having a stroke. She was highly reactive to aspartame and if she even sniffs any she will get a migraine.

One of the primary problems with aspartame is the methanol it forms in your body. Methanol acts as a Trojan horse, being carried into susceptible tissues in your body, such as your brain, where an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) converts it into formaldehyde. This in turn can wreak havoc with sensitive proteins and DNA.

All other animals have a protective mechanism that allows methanol to be broken down into harmless formic acid, but according to aspartame expert Dr. Woodrow Monte, there's a major biochemical problem with methanol in humans, because humans simply do not have this protective metabolic mechanism. Migraineurs will likely recognize several of the symptoms of methanol poisoning, which include headache, throbbing migraine, ear buzzing, dizziness, nausea, gastrointestinal disturbances, weakness, vertigo, chills, memory lapses, numbness and shooting pains in the extremities, behavioral disturbances, and neuritis.

Diet for Migraine Relief

Quite a few people have reportedly rid themselves of migraines on the Paleo diet, which can be summarized as “any food that can be eaten without being processed.” That means no grains, bread or pasta, and no pasteurized dairy, but does include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, some nuts and oils along with wild caught fish, organic poultry and grass-fed lean meats.

I believe a return to “real food” is one of the most profound interventions for the 21st century. We've strayed so far from the foods we are designed to eat, going back to basics and refocusing your diet on fresh, whole, unprocessed, "real" food can improve just about anyone's health, regardless of what health issues you need to address. You can easily mold your diet around the principles of Paleo eating by following my nutrition plan. The full details are described in the plan, but generally speaking, the following key factors apply to anyone seeking a “healthy diet”:

Eliminate all gluten products    Organically grown produce, and grass-fed or pastured animal products that are free from additives and genetically engineered ingredients
Eliminate all artificial sweeteners, especially aspartame. My sister is one of many who will get a guaranteed migraine if she consumes any aspartame. Obviously, even if you don’t have migraines, there simply is no reason to ever consume aspartame    Carbohydrates primarily come from vegetables (except corn and potatoes, which should typically be avoided). Dramatically lowering your intake of non-vegetable carbs could improve leptin and insulin signaling which could also improve migraines
Focus on unprocessed, whole foods, eaten raw or only lightly cooked (ideally, try to eat at least one-third of your food raw, or as much as you can manage)    Food from high-quality, local sources
Quick, Natural Tips to Relieve a Migraine

Preventing migraines begins by avoiding the triggers. Most often this means eating healthy whole foods (avoiding most processed ones) and managing your stress effectively. Following my eating plan seems to reduce migraines by about 80 percent, although it does take some time to work. It’s a lifestyle switch, not a quick and easy fix. Avoiding wheat, grains, sugar and all fluids but water seem to be particularly effective.

Regular exercise may also help to keep migraines at bay by improving your response to stress along with the underlying inflammatory conditions that can trigger migraines. Ideally, those are the things to focus on so that you can reduce your migraines altogether. That said, should a migraine strike and you need immediate relief, you could try one or more of the following:

Stimulate your body's natural painkilling ability. By putting pressure on a nerve just under your eyebrow, you can cause your pituitary gland to release painkilling endorphins immediately    Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). Newcomers who use this simple process by themselves achieve relief 50 percent to 80 percent of the time and, in many cases, the relief is complete and permanent. More sophisticated uses by an EFT expert may be required for some migraine sufferers
Take 10 teaspoons of cayenne pepper in a glass of water. Endorphins are released by your brain when the cayenne hits your stomach lining. Another alternative is to swallow a dollop of wasabi paste    Green apple scent. One study found that the scent significantly relieved migraine pain. This may also work with other scents that you enjoy so consulting with an aromatherapist may be beneficial
Hot/Cold compress: Alternate hot and cold compresses on your forehead and/or behind your neck    Massage your ears, ear lobes, and the "crown" of your head -- the ring of muscles that circle your head where a crown would sit

Modern Wheat a "Perfect, Chronic Poison," Doctor Says

(CBS News) Modern wheat is a "perfect, chronic poison," according to Dr. William Davis, a cardiologist who has published a book all about the world's most popular grain.

Davis said that the wheat we eat these days isn't the wheat your grandma had: "It's an 18-inch tall plant created by genetic research in the '60s and '70s," he said on "CBS This Morning." "This thing has many new features nobody told you about, such as there's a new protein in this thing called gliadin. It's not gluten. I'm not addressing people with gluten sensitivities and celiac disease. I'm talking about everybody else because everybody else is susceptible to the gliadin protein that is an opiate. This thing binds into the opiate receptors in your brain and in most people stimulates appetite, such that we consume 440 more calories per day, 365 days per year."

Asked if the farming industry could change back to the grain it formerly produced, Davis said it could, but it would not be economically feasible because it yields less per acre. However, Davis said a movement has begun with people turning away from wheat - and dropping substantial weight.

"If three people lost eight pounds, big deal," he said. "But we're seeing hundreds of thousands of people losing 30, 80, 150 pounds. Diabetics become no longer diabetic; people with arthritis having dramatic relief. People losing leg swelling, acid reflux, irritable bowel syndrome, depression, and on and on every day."

To avoid these wheat-oriented products, Davis suggests eating "real food," such as avocados, olives, olive oil, meats, and veget

ables. "(It's) the stuff that is least likely to have been changed by agribusiness," he said. "Certainly not grains. When I say grains, of course, over 90 percent of all grains we eat will be wheat, it's not barley... or flax. It's going to be wheat.

"It's really a wheat issue."


Some health resources, such as the Mayo Clinic, advocate a more balanced diet that does include wheat. But Davis said on "CTM" they're just offering a poor alternative.

"All that literature says is to replace something bad, white enriched products with something less bad, whole grains, and there's an apparent health benefit - 'Let's eat a whole bunch of less bad things.' So I take...unfiltered cigarettes and replace with Salem filtered cigarettes, you should smoke the Salems. That's the logic of nutrition, it's a deeply flawed logic. What if I take it to the next level, and we say, 'Let's eliminate all grains,' what happens then?

"That's when you see, not improvements in health, that's when you see transformations in health."





What is the Role of Gut Bacteria in Calorie Restriction

What Is the Role of Gut Bacteria in Calorie Restriction?

July 29, 2013

By Dr. Mercola

Lowering your caloric intake has been scientifically proven to slow down aging, reduce age-related chronic diseases and extend lifespan. The effects have been observed in a variety of species from worms and yeast to rats and fish, with some research showing that restricting calories in certain animals can increase their lifespan by as much as 50 percent.

There’s evidence that calorie restriction has a similar effect on the human lifespan, as well, and one of the key reasons why is likely related to its ability to lower your insulin levels as well as improve insulin sensitivity.

However, researchers recently studied whether calorie restriction also prompts changes to your gut microbiota, which may also be responsible for some of its beneficial role in health.

Calorie Restriction Prompts Significant Changes to Your Gut Bacteria

Science is increasingly revealing that microorganisms living in your gut are there performing indispensable functions. Known as your microbiome, about 100 trillion of these cells populate your body, particularly your intestines and other parts of your digestive system.

There is also an emerging consensus that most disease originates in your digestive system, and this includes conditions that impact your brain, your heart, your weight and your immune system, among others. There’s also evidence that the microorganisms present in your gut can affect how well you age,1 and this, of course, ties in directly with the latest research on calorie restriction and longevity.

One important thing to remember about the microbes in your gut is that they are not static. They can change profoundly throughout your life, for better or for worse, and one of the biggest influences on this change is your diet.

Indeed, the latest study showed that life-long calorie restriction in mice “significantly changes the overall structure of the gut microbiota” in ways that promote longevity.2 So it now appears that one reason why calorie restriction may lengthen lifespan is because it promotes positive changes to the microorganisms in your gut.

The researchers noted:

“Calorie restriction enriches phylotypes positively correlated with lifespan, for example, the genus Lactobacillus on low-fat diet, and reduces phylotypes negatively correlated with lifespan.

These calorie restriction-induced changes in the gut microbiota are concomitant with significantly reduced serum levels of lipopolysaccharide-binding protein, suggesting that animals under calorie restriction can establish a structurally balanced architecture of gut microbiota that may exert a health benefit to the host via reduction of antigen load from the gut.”

Intermittent Fasting May Provide Comparable Health Benefits to Calorie Restriction

While the research supporting calorie restriction is compelling, it’s not a very popular dietary strategy for most people, for obvious reasons. Many are simply not willing to deprive themselves of calories to the extent needed to prompt the beneficial effects.

An alternative that is much more acceptable is intermittent fasting, which can be as simple as restricting your daily eating to a narrower window of time of say 6-8 hours (this equates to 16-18 hours worth of fasting each and every day).

Recent research suggests that sudden and intermittent calorie restriction appears to provide many of the same health benefits as constant calorie restriction, including extending lifespan and protecting against disease. For instance, intermittent fasting leads to:

1.              Increased insulin sensitivity and mitochondrial energy efficiency – Fasting increases your leptin and insulin sensitivity along with mitochondrial energy efficiency, and thereby retards aging and disease, which are typically associated with loss of insulin sensitivity and declined mitochondrial energy.

2.              Reduced oxidative stress – Fasting decreases the accumulation of oxidative radicals in the cell, and thereby prevents oxidative damage to cellular proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids associated with aging and disease.

3.              Increased capacity to resist stress, disease and aging – Fasting induces a cellular stress response (similar to that induced by exercise) in which cells up-regulate the expression of genes that increase the capacity to cope with stress and resist disease and aging.

Intermittent Fasting Switches Your Body to Fat-Burning Mode… With Radical Improvements to Your Gut

If you want to give intermittent fasting a try, consider starting gradually. You can delay breakfast as long as possible and extend the time every day before you eat breakfast until you are actually skipping breakfast. Make sure you stop eating and drinking anything but water three hours before you go to sleep, and restrict your eating to an 8-hour (or less) time frame every day. In the 6-8 hours that you do eat, have healthy protein, minimize your carbs like pasta, bread, and potatoes and exchange them for healthful fats like butter, eggs, avocado, coconut oil, olive oil and nuts — essentially the very fats the media and “experts” tell you to avoid.

This will help shift you from carb-burning to fat-burning mode. Once your body has made this shift, it is nothing short of magical as your cravings for sweets, and food in general, rapidly normalizes and your desire for sweets and junk food radically decreases -- if not disappears entirely.

Remember, it typically takes a few weeks for most to shift from burning carbs to fat-burning mode. Once you succeed and switch to fat-burning mode, you'll be easily able to fast for 18 hours and not feel hungry. The “hunger” most people feel is actually cravings for sugar, and these will disappear once you successfully shift over to burning fat instead.

Another phenomenal benefit that occurs is that you will radically improve the beneficial bacteria in your gut, as occurs with calorie restriction. Along with improving your immune system, you will sleep better, have more energy, have increased mental clarity and concentrate better. Essentially, every aspect of your health will improve as your gut flora becomes balanced.


tain Gut Bacteria are ‘Major Contributors’ to Cancer

As if you needed even more reason to optimize the bacteria in your gut, recent research has revealed an association between different gut bacteria and the development of lymphoma, a cancer of the white blood cells. The study involved mice with ataxia-telangiectasia (A-T), a genetic disease linked to a high rate of B-cell lymphoma in both mice and humans. Those with certain microbial species in their gut lived significantly longer before developing lymphoma, and had less of the gene damage that causes the disease. The researchers also created a catalog detailing which types of bacteria had either promoting or protective effects on genotoxicity and lymphoma.

This is not the first time gut bacteria has been linked to cancer. Findings published in the journal Nature,3 for instance, reported the discovery of microbial-dependent mechanisms through which some cancers mount an inflammatory response that fuels their development and growth. Another study, published in the journal Science,4 suggested cancer may be due to a chain reaction that starts with inflammation that disrupts your gut ecosystem, allowing pathogens, such as E. coli, to invade your gut and cause cellular damage.

Healthy Gut 101: How to Optimize Your Microflora for Better Health

With it now becoming increasingly clear that your microflora influence the expression of your genes, your immune system, weight, mental health, memory, and your risk of numerous chronic and acute diseases, from diabetes to cancer, destroying your gut flora with antibiotics and poor diet is a primary factor in rising disease rates.

As discussed, your diet is crucial in this equation, and it appears likely that calorie restriction, or intermittent fasting, may have a beneficial effect on the makeup of your microflora. But there are other factors, too. Remember, an estimated 80 percent of your immune system is also located in your gut, so reseeding your gut with healthy bacteria is important for the prevention of virtually ALL disease, from colds to cancer. In light of this, here are my recommendations for optimizing your gut bacteria.

                Fermented foods are the best route to optimal digestive health, as long as you eat the traditionally made, unpasteurized versions. Healthy choices include fermented grass-fed organic milk such as kefir, various fermentations of vegetables like cabbage, turnips, eggplant, cucumbers, onions, squash and carrots, and natto (fermented soy).

                Fermented vegetables, which are one of my new passions, are an excellent way to supply beneficial bacteria back into your gut. And, unlike some other fermented foods, they tend to be palatable, if not downright delicious, to most people. Most high-quality probiotic supplements will only supply you with a fraction of the beneficial bacteria found in such homemade fermented vegetables, so it’s your most economical route to optimal gut health as well.

                Probiotic supplement. Although I'm not a major proponent of taking many supplements (as I believe the majority of your nutrients need to come from food), probiotics are an exception if you don’t eat plenty of raw organic and fermented foods on a regular basis.

In addition to knowing what to add to your diet and lifestyle, it’s equally important to know what to avoid, for optimal microflora balance, and this includes:


Antibiotics, unless absolutely necessary (and when you do use them,   make sure to reseed your gut with fermented foods and/or a probiotics   supplement)


Conventionally raised meats and other animal products, as CAFO animals   are routinely fed low-dose antibiotics, plus genetically engineered   grains, which have also been implicated in the destruction of   gut flora


Processed foods (as the excessive grains and sugars, along with   otherwise “dead” nutrients, feed pathogenic bacteria)


Chlorinated and/or fluoridated water


Antibacterial soap


Agricultural chemicals



Symptoms to Expect When You Improve Your Diet

Excerpted From An Article By Dr. Stanley S. Bass, ND, D.C., PhD Perhaps the greatest misunderstanding in the field of nutrition is the failure to understand and interpret the symptoms and changes which follow the beginning of a better nutritional program. A remarkable thing happens when a person improves the quality of the food he consumes. When the food you ingest is of a higher quality than the tissues from which the body is made, the body discards the lower quality tissues, to make room for the higher quality materials to make healthier tissue. During this process of regeneration, lasting about 10 days to several weeks, the emphasis is on breaking down and eliminating lower quality tissue. The vibrant energy often found in the external parts of the body, the muscles and skin, moves to vital internal organs and starts reconstruction. This movement of energy produces a feeling of less energy in the muscles, which the mind interprets as weakness. At this time, more rest and sleep is often needed, and it's imperative to avoid stimulants of any kind which will abort and defeat the regenerative process. Remember, the body isn't getting weaker, it's simply using it's energies in more important internal work rather than external work involving muscle movements. With patience and diligence, a person will soon feel more energy than before. By ingesting higher quality foods, the body begins a process called "retracing". The initial focus is on eliminating waste and toxins deposited in the tissues. However, the process creates symptoms that are often misinterpreted. For example, a person who stops consuming coffee or chocolate may experience headaches and a general letdown. The body begins discarding toxins (caffeine or theobromin) by removing them from the tissues and transporting them through the bloodstream. However, before toxins are passed, through elimination, they register in our consciousness as pain, in other words, a headache. These same toxins also stimulate the heart to beat more rapidly, thus producing the feeling of exhilaration. The letdown is due to the slower action of the heart which produces a depressed mind state. The symptoms experienced during "retracing" are part of the healing process! They are not deficiencies. Do not treat them with stimulants or drugs. These symptoms are constructive, even though unpleasant at the moment. Don't try to cure the cure. The symptoms will vary according to the materials being discarded, the condition of the organs involved in the elimination, and the amount of available energy. They can include: headaches, fever/chills, colds, skin eruptions, constipation/diarrhea, frequent urination, fatigue/sluggishness, nervousness, irritability, depression. The symptoms will be milder and pass more quickly if one gets more rest and  sleep. Understand that the body becomes healthier by eliminating wastes and toxins. Had they remained trapped in the tissues, eventually they would have brought illness and disease, thus causing greater pain and suffering. "The body is becoming healthier by eliminating toxins" Finally, don't expect to improve your diet and feel better and better every day, until you reach perfection. The body is cyclical in nature. Health returns in a series of gradually diminishing cycles. For example,  you may begin eating better and start feeling better. After some time, you experience a symptom such as nausea or diarrhea. After a day, you feel even better than before and all goes well for a while. Then you suddenly develop a cold, the chills and lose your appetite. Without the use of drugs, you recover from these symptoms and suddenly you feel great. This well-being continues for a time until you break out in a rash. The rash flares up, but finally disappears, and suddenly you feel better than you've felt in years. As the body becomes pure, each reaction becomes milder and shorter in duration, followed by longer and longer periods of feeling better than ever before, until finally you reach a level plateau...vibrant health. [A big thanks to Denis Landry for posting this exerpt on Facebook. The complete article can be found at]

Welcome to our "Health" blog

Welcome to our Health blog where there will be a lot of collaboration between Tom and I. I was always interested in nutrition and exercise, though that interest was not always displayed in my lifestyle! I had a nutrition minor in college, but it wasn't until 1993, when I jumped into the world of raw foods, that I really started reading and researching a lot about nutrition. What I've learned over time is that the experts all disagree and the experts also change their minds! Now Tom does most of the nutritional research, and I get to take what he's learning and apply it to what feels right for my body.

Our goal for some time now has been to find an exercise and nutritional plan that works for us day-in/day-out. What we've learned still doesn't always translate into our lifestyle choices, but we've come a long way, that's for sure!! In this blog, we will be sharing what we are learning--and you can follow along as you like! Welcome!