Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Nexium, Prilosec and Prevacid : The Heartburn Meds That Are Bad For You

Smoking Gun for Stomach Drugs

 

Dangers of Proton Pump Inhibitors

 

Acid-Suppressing Medicine Can Deplete the Body of Needed Magnesium - The People's Pharmacy® #Lansoprazole #Magnesium #PPI #Prilosec #acidsuppressingdrugs #Prevacid #lansoprazoleomeprazole #heartburn #MedicationSideEffects #DrugSideEffectsProton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are among the most widely used medications in the U.S. This class of drug is used to treat chronic heartburn. Although the pain often happens in the lower to mid chest area, it is not related to heart disease or a heart attack.

Instead, heartburn pain happens when acid refluxes up your esophagus, burning the tissue. The fluid in your stomach is highly acidic, necessary for digestion of your food, protection against bacteria and absorption of many nutrients.

A variety of different reasons can cause this acidic fluid to pass the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) and burn your esophagus, but most cases of heartburn are due either to a hiatal hernia or Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection.

Occasional heartburn is best treated with simple lifestyle changes, such as drinking a bit of apple cider vinegar in water right before or after your meals. Unfortunately, when you experience chronic pain over many weeks, your physician may prescribe a daily medication. PPIs are one class of those medications.

The top selling PPIs include Nexium, Prilosec and Prevacid, all available both as a prescription and over-the-counter (OTC). However, your doctor’s orders may actually do more harm than good in this instance, as these drugs tend to make your situation worse rather than better.

Smoking Gun Points to PPIs

Important information if you are taking medications. Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec LawsuitYour cells use a proton pump to produce acid. PPI medications are designed to inhibit the proton pump and reduce the amount of acid produced. PPIs do not specifically target the cells in your stomach, and stomach acid is usually not the primary trigger behind chronic heartburn.

This class of drug is not specific, and instead will inhibit any cell with a proton pump producing acid, whether those cells are in your stomach or not. Researchers from Stanford University and Houston Methodist Hospital in Texas believe this is the smoking gun behind the variety of dangerous side effects linked to PPIs.1

The production of acid in your cells is associated with a specific cleanup process. The cells use acid to clean out end products and garbage from metabolism and cell function. When the acid is not present, there is a buildup of these toxins in the cells, which may lead to the development of a variety of significant health conditions.2

Excess stomach acid is not often the cause for your heartburn. Quite the opposite is true. Low amounts of stomach acid and the subsequent overgrowth of bacteria changes the digestion of carbohydrates, producing gas. The gas increases the pressure on the LES, releasing acid into the esophagus, creating heartburn.

While you may experience speedy relief of heartburn from immediate acting acid neutralizing medications such as TUMS, long-acting medications such as PPIs may increase your risk of heartburn over time.3

When Acid Levels Change, It Damages Your Body’s Ability to Function Properly

Proton pump inhibiting antacids such as omeprazole, lansoprazole, nexium and others can cause Alzheimer's... is the risk worth it?

 

When PPIs were first approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they were designed to be taken for no more than six weeks. However, today it is not uncommon to find people who have been taking these drugs for more than 10 years.4 Long-term use has been associated with a number of different problems, including:

Bacterial Overgrowth

Long-term use of PPIs encourages overgrowth of bacteria in your digestive tract.5 Bacterial overgrowth leads to malabsorption of nutrients and has been linked to inflammation of the stomach wall.6

Reduced Absorption of Nutrients

One of the most common causes of impaired function of digestion and the absorption of nutrients is the reduction of stomach acid production.

This occurs in both the elderly and individuals on long-term antacid treatments, such as PPIs.7Acid breaks down proteins, activates hormones and enzymes and protects your gut against overgrowth of bacteria.

Lack of acid results in iron and mineral deficiencies and incomplete digestion of proteins. This may also lead to a vitamin B12 deficiency.8 PPIs are also linked to a reduced absorption of magnesium. Low magnesium levels may lead to muscle spasms, heart palpitations and convulsions.9

Low Stomach Acid

PPIs reduce the amount of stomach acid. Symptoms include heartburn, indigestion, bloating, diarrhea, burping, burning and flatulence.10

Decreased Resistance to Infection

Your mouth, esophagus and intestines are home to a healthy growth of bacteria, but your stomach is relatively sterile. Stomach acid kills most of the bacteria coming from your food or liquids, protecting your stomach and your intestinal tract from abnormal bacterial growth.11

At the same time, the acid prevents the bacteria growing in your intestines from moving into your stomach or esophagus.

Reducing stomach acid changes the pH of your stomach and allows external bacteria to grow. PPIs may reduce acid between 90 and 95 percent, increasing your risk of salmonella, c. difficile, giardia and listeria infections.12,13

Other studies have linked the use of acid-reducing drugs to the development of pneumonia, tuberculosis (TB) and typhoid.14,15,16

The distortion of the gut microbiome affects your immune system and may increase your overall risk of infection. In vitro studies, those done on cells in test tubes, have found PPIs damage the function of white blood cells, responsible for fighting infection.17

Increased Risk of Bone Fractures

Lowering stomach acid production may also reduce the amount of calcium absorption, which in turn may lead to osteoporosis.

Researchers have linked long-term, dose-dependent use of PPIs with increased risk of hip fracture. The longer you take the medication and the more you take, the higher your risk of fracture.18

Antacids and Aspirin

In addition to the side effects listed above, researchers are discovering other health conditions associated with the use of PPIs and other acid reducing drugs.

Even while on PPI medication, you may experience occasional heartburn. Immediate acting antacids used to neutralize the acid in your esophagus may offer relief. Just be aware that this is really only adding insult to injury.

What’s worse, some antacids also contain aspirin, which may heighten your risk of adverse effects. In 2009, the FDA issued a warning about severe bleeding associated with the use of aspirin.

Since that time, the FDA has recorded eight cases of severe bleeding resulting from using over-the-counter antacids to neutralize heartburn.19 In some of those cases, the individual required a blood transfusion to stabilize their condition.

In a statement, Dr. Karen Murry Mahoney, deputy director of the division of nonprescription drug products, said:

“Take a close look at the Drug Facts label, and if the product has aspirin, consider choosing something else for your stomach symptoms.

Unless people read the Drug Facts label when they’re looking for stomach symptom relief, they might not even think about the possibility that a stomach medicine could contain aspirin.”20

What Barrett’s Esophagus Means to You

Long-term gastric reflux and heartburn may lead to Barrett’s Esophagus. This is a change in the cellular structure of the lining of your esophagus in response to chronic exposure to acid. Risk factors for Barrett’s Esophagus include:

Males Older age Tobacco use
Obesity Alcohol use Caucasian or African-American

The risk of developing cancer of the esophagus is significantly higher when you have Barrett’s Esophagus. In past years, the more common form of skin cancer has been squamous cell carcinoma. However, researchers have now discovered if you have taken PPIs for an extended period of time and have developed Barrett’s Esophagus, you have an increased risk of a more aggressive form called adenocarcinoma.

As recently as 1975, 75 percent of the esophageal cancers diagnosed were squamous cell carcinomas. More amenable to treatment and less aggressive then adenocarcinoma, the numbers have radically shifted in the past 30 years.21 The rate of squamous cell carcinoma has declined slightly, but the number of diagnosed adenocarcinoma of the esophagus has risen dramatically.

In 1975, 4 people per million were diagnosed with adenocarcinoma, and in 2001 it rose to 23 people per million, making it the fastest growing cancer in the U.S. according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI).22

Adenocarcinoma is now diagnosed in 80 percent of all esophageal cancers.23 Researchers theorized PPIs would protect people with Barrett’s Esophagus from adenocarcinoma, but found the reverse to be true. Not only did PPIs not protect the esophagus, but instead there was a dramatic increase in the risk of this deadly cancer, discovered in two separate studies.24,25

PPIs May Raise Your Risk for Dementia, Kidney Disease and Heart Attacks

PPIs affect all cells in your body, which may explain why they have been linked to such deadly conditions as kidney disease, heart attacks and dementia. In the past, PPIs were linked to acute interstitial nephritis, an inflammatory process in the kidneys. In a recent study of over 10,000 participants, researchers found another link to chronic kidney disease.26

The team found that those using PPIs to treat heartburn were more likely than other individuals on different heartburn medications to suffer chronic kidney disease or kidney failure over a five-year period.

Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly, one of the researchers and a kidney specialist with the Veterans Affairs St. Louis Health Care System, said the findings illuminated a significant point: “I think people see these medications at the drug store and assume they’re completely safe. But there’s growing evidence they’re not as safe as we’ve thought.

PPIs have also been linked to dementia in people over age 75. In a study evaluating over 73,000 people over age 75 without any signs of dementia at the outset of the study, researchers made a startling connection. Of the individuals who developed dementia in the following seven years, those who regularly used PPIs had a significantly higher risk of the condition.

A large data-mining study performed by researchers from Stanford University discovered PPIs were also associated with an increased risk of heart attack, while other long-term heartburn medications were not.

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Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

Gut Dysfunction Can Easily Lead to Systemwide Inflammation

SIBO Summer Cookbook

 

Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth or SIBO is a very common condition, and if you have it, many of the healthy interventions that are commonly recommended to improve gut health simply won’t work. They’ll actually make you worse.

“What happens in [SIBO], as the name kind of hints at, is you have an overgrowth of bacteria in the small intestine. What’s interesting here is it’s not an infection per se, because it’s not bacteria that shouldn’t be there. Oftentimes it’s bacteria that’s normal to the system. It’s just overgrown.

In SIBO, our goal [is to re-establish a healthy balance]. One of the ways we can achieve that goal is by using an elimination diet of one food group at a time , which … essentially just means prebiotics … compounds that feed bacteria.”

The classic symptom of SIBO is altered bowel function. Some will have constipation; others diarrhea, while some oscillate between the two. Abdominal pain, bloating or discomfort are also common telltale signs, and estimates suggest SIBO may be an underlying cause in a majority of IBS cases.

Interestingly, SIBO has also been linked to skin conditions such as rosacea, and neurological conditions such as restless leg syndrome. Treating SIBO has also been shown to improve rheumatoid arthritis, and studies have shown an association between SIBO and thyroid autoimmunity and/or hypothyroidism.

“This is where it gets challenging, because we can’t put SIBO just in the digestive box,”Ruscio says. “There may be someone who has a skin condition and a joint condition that is only attributable to their SIBO. I’d like to paint this perspective for people in terms of how to navigate this.

My philosophy is, once you’ve taken some steps to generally improve your diet and your lifestyle, if you’re still floundering, I think the next best step for most people … would be taking steps to ensure you have optimal gut health. Because there’s not necessarily a constellation of symptoms that would say you have SIBO or another gut condition. Rather, I look at it more as a sequencing maneuver.”

How to Diagnose and Treat SIBO

According to Ruscio, a breath test is the best method of diagnosis. This involves eating a preparation diet the day before the test, and then collecting a series of breath samples after drinking a solution of either lactose or glucose. Breath samples are typically collected every 15 to 20 minutes for about three hours.

“Essentially, what we’re looking for are the changes in the gas levels on those breath samples. Those can tell you if you have SIBO or if you don’t have SIBO,” he says. As mentioned, — in which you specifically avoid most fruits and vegetables — is often prescribed to address SIBO third class symptoms.

“Every gut is an ecosystem. Every gut does not require the same inputs to thrive. This is one phase where that ecosystem requires a reduction of — at least temporarily — from various  foods to allow things to rebalance …

You can do a plus or minus the rules of paleo, meaning if you’re going to do a paleo,  diet, you’ll have no grains and you’ll have no dairy. Some people may prefer that, or some people may prefer the standard low-diet, which allows some grains. There’s a time and a place, I think, for each. But that’s where you can start.”

Alternatively, you can perform a urinary organic acid test, which tests for over 100 metabolites in your urine. There are a number of characteristics ones that show up if you have SIBO, so that is an alternative diagnostic strategy.

Gluten Sensitivity  and Histamine Intolerance

It’s worth noting that what may appear to be nonceliac gluten sensitivity may actually be a sensitivity, or a histamine intolerance. Histamine is a neuroactive compound. It’s also a singling molecule for your immune system. And, like a low step-diet, the low-histamine diet can seem paradoxical, as it eliminates fermented foods, which are high in histamine, as are avocado, spinach and many fishes.

“Why this is important is because if we were living in an overly idealistic situation, then we could just wave a wand and say, ‘OK, you’re going to go grain-free, dairy-free, low-step, low-histamine and low-carb.’ But if you actually have to do that, things become really challenging.

What I have been seeing in the clinic is patients coming in afraid of food … They come in afraid to eat anything. Some of these patients are literally making themselves sick because they’re trying to adhere to two, three, four or five diet rules all at once. This is really pushing me to kind of open my mind a bit on grains.

I used to be much more antigrain. But noticing that some people had bigger dietary battles to fight, like   histamine — if they have to really focus on avoiding  histamine, we’ve got to give them some room somewhere else. For some, giving them some room to bring back grains into their diets actually is quite helpful …

I was eating, at one point, what I called the ‘lazy man’s paleo diet.’ I’d have a can of tuna with an avocado. That’s low-carb. It’s quick and easy. I’d wash it down with some sauerkraut and a kombucha. And then at lunch I’d have spinach along with some salmon. A lot of the convenient paleo, low-carb foods are fairly rich in histamine.

I remember very distinctly being at my desk working one day — a beautiful sunny day, with no reason for me not to be happy — and I had this fog over me. I was very irritable.

I was thinking to myself, ‘What the heck is going on?’ It took me a couple of days to put it together, but I was eating a high-histamine food at every meal. I was just saturating my system with histamine. I just needed to make a simple change of spacing out those high-histamine foods.”

In short, whether you’re suspecting a nonceliac gluten sensitivity or histamine intolerance, the key is to find a diet that does not irritate your gut. For many, this might be a low-carb, paleo-type approach, potentially with a reduction of histamine-rich foods.

“The nice thing about this is it only takes usually about two weeks to notice if one of these diets is working for you. This is what I walk people through in the book. ‘OK. You start here. We’ll give this diet a two-week trial, and then re-evaluate.’

You might be done with the diet at that point or you may have to make a tweak and give that another two weeks. It doesn’t take long. But it’s a series of self-experiments to see what works best for your system. And then once you’re feeling well, you know you’ve gotten the diet that’s the best for your unique gut ecosystem.”

With any ” gut” sensitivity or condition you may have, taking laxatives will not help with constipation, but it will produce more bacteria in your gut.  This is true of ant-acids, which again should never be taken with SIBO.

If you are having those problems, the answer is not another prescription, but ask a good health care provider for an alternative method.  You need someone who can look at the foods you are eating and detect which foods are causing the problem.   Keep track of the foods you eat!

 

As a general rule, once you start healing your gut, you should start feeling improvements in a couple of weeks to a few months. That said, some will respond within days, and be fully healed in weeks. It really all depends on what your problem is, and how severe the dysfunction. As noted by Ruscio:

“There’s more going on than just the intestinal cells repairing. There are the intestinal cells. There’s the local immune system. There’s the microflora and the balance of the microflora. All of these things have to kind of integrate. Some of these things feedback on each other.

I should mention, be careful with what you read about SIBO, because some circles would have you believe SIBO is this chronic condition that you can never heal … That’s not true for the vast majority of people. The prognosis is much more hopeful for healing the gut than most people realize. Healing can occur within weeks to months for the majority of people.”

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Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Foods That Help You Burn Fat

Foods That Help You Burn Fat

 

Foods to Help You Lose Fat

salmon on blue plate
Corinna Gissemann/Stocksy United

Sticking to a healthy diet is tough — we need all the extra motivation we can get. Adding fat-burning foods to your meals ‘n snacks does double duty: They’re healthy additions in and of themselves, and they help burn calories. Try the following:

2

Berserk for Beans

Fat-Burning Foods: Beans
Courtesy of Getty Images

One bean, two bean, red bean, blue bean. And when I say “red” and “blue,” I mean “pinto” and “navy.” Whatever type of bean is your personal favorite, you can count on one thing — experts insist it’ll be great at helping your body burn fat. Beans are all-around amazing because they contain lots of protein and fiber. Eating protein is one of the very best ways to encourage your body to burn fat: It boosts your metabolism and helps you feel full and energized. Where does the fiber come in? Studies show that dietary fiber can help regulate your appetite and slow down your digestion, both of which are great for weight control. Aside from those navy and pinto beans, stock up on other fat-burning beans like soybeans, garbanzo beans, black beans, white beans, kidney beans, and lima beans. 

Bonus: Beans are incredibly budget friendly. Who doesn’t love that?

3

Fired Up for Fish

Fat-Burning Foods: Fish
Courtesy of Getty Images

But not just any fish! While most types of seafood are smart choices, they’re not all fat-burning superstars like salmon and tuna. You’ve probably heard that salmon and tuna are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Why should you care? Because not only do omega-3s help grow your hair and nails, they stimulate a protein hormone in your body called leptin, which jumpstarts your metabolism and regulates your appetite. Who’s up for sushi?

4

Hungry for Whole Grains

Fat-Burning Foods: Whole Grains
Courtesy of Getty Images

Are you cuckoo for carbs? Well, then, allow me to introduce your new best friends: quinoa, brown rice, oat, and corn. These foods are considered whole grains (not to be confused with refined white carbs, which are basically the opposite of fat-burning foods), and chowing down on them fuels your bod with much-needed fiber and complex carbohydrates. It’s the “complex” part that helps burn fat: 1) Complex carbs break down more slowly than the simple variety, meaning your energy levels won’t crash, and 2) They hold your insulin levels steady, which is good because insulin spikes encourage your body to hang on to fat. Rise and shine and burn fat with one of our staple recipes, the growing oatmeal bowl.

5

Delicious Dairy

Fat-Burning Foods: Dairy
Courtesy of Getty Images

If quinoa is your new best friend, yogurt should come in at a close second. Dairy products contain both protein and calcium, which help keep your muscle mass intact while promoting weight loss. Another tidbit of good news about dairy: Studies show that of two groups of participants on low-calorie diets, the group that included dairy in their diets lost more weight than the dairy-free group. And, as if you need more reason to grow a milk mustache, research shows that probiotics found in some light dairy ​fights fat.

Dairy can be scary because it usually contains fat, but it’s not difficult to stick to fat-free and light varieties of milk, yogurt, and cheese. There are so many delicious options out there.

6

Ready for Red Grapes (and Wine)

fat-burning-foods-grapes-wine
Courtesy of Getty Images

As if we needed another reason to drink red wine. I’ve saved the best for last: A recent study suggests that red wine (from extracts found in a certain type of red grape) may help your body fight fat. The study found that people who ate a high-fat diet accumulated less fat when they also consumed Muscadine grapes. Conversely, the group that also ate a high-fat diet but didn’t consume the red grapes accumulated the amount of fat that would be expected based on their food choices. The results are attributed mostly to something called ellagic acid, a compound found in Muscadine grapes. Muscadine grapes are grown primarily in the southeastern United States, and they’re used to make certain American wines. Cheers!​

 

Please NOTE:   It is not correct for everyone to eat all of these food groups mentioned.  If you are having problems with digestion, or anti-inflammatory problems please send us a note.   Prevention is the best path to travel.  Let us help  you out with that!
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Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Popular Heartburn Drugs Linked to Chronic Kidney Disease

nexium

Popular Heartburn Drugs Linked to Chronic Kidney Disease

 

In a recent study published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers from John Hopkins University found that the drugs that treat acid reflux and heartburn (like Prevacid, Prilosec and Nexium) may not be as safe as once thought. While most considered the drugs effective and relatively free from side effects, this new study shows two things: a large number of people taking the meds don’t actually need them and proton pump inhibitors (PPI) raise the risk of kidney disease from 20 to 50 percent. And those facts come on the heels of another study from last June done by Stanford University which found those medications contributed to a higher chance of heart attacks.

 

Researchers looked at the records of more than 10,000 people and found that the, “risk of the onset of chronic kidney disease was 20 to 50 percent higher in those who took the PPIs. No increased risk was seen in people who took a different class of heartburn drugs like Pepcid and Zantac, which work by blocking histamine production in the cells lining the stomach”(PPIs block the secretion of acid into the stomach).

More from the article:

“JUST AS IT IS A FALLACY THAT PPIS ARE SAFE TO TAKE EVERY DAY FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME, SO IT IS ALSO A FALLACY THAT HEARTBURN IS CAUSED BY TOO MUCH STOMACH ACID, ACCORDING TO NOTED NATURAL HEALTH PRACTITIONER DR. JOSEPH MERCOLA. CONTRARY TO WHAT IS WIDELY BELIEVED, REFLUX IS CAUSED BY TOO LITTLE ACID. FURTHERMORE, TAKING DRUGS THAT SUPPRESS STOMACH ACID MERELY TREATS THE SYMPTOMS RATHER THAN ATTACKS THE ROOT OF THE PROBLEM. IN FACT, THE MEDICATIONS ACTUALLY WORSEN THE CONDITION THAT PRODUCES THE SYMPTOMS, A RESULT THAT PERPETUATES THE PROBLEM. HE RECOMMENDS THAT PEOPLE WHO TAKE PPIS SHOULD GRADUALLY WEAN THEMSELVES OFF OF THEM INSTEAD OF STOPPING COLD TURKEY. AFTERWARDS, MERCOLA ADVISES TAKING NATURAL REMEDIES AND ADOPTING LIFESTYLE MODIFICATIONS.”

What many health practitioners have known for a long time is that it’s possible to treat heartburn naturally- and therefore- safely; some people use yellow mustard, many take apple cider vinegar (from the Mother is always best and either straight or in water), and still others have found success using a different type of salt, like a pink himalayan (if you use added salt in your food).

Some of those lifestyle modifications would be eating foods that help, rather than hurt and stress, your gut biome; fermented vegetables (kimchee/sauerkraut), kefir, and for those non-vegans, yogurt made from raw milk, are all great. And don’t be afraid to move your body! Exercise is good for you and will help. Then there are the more obvious things like smoking, caffeine and excessive alcohol.

Sadly, some kidney problems are irreversible and chronic kidney disease can result in kidney failure (which necessitates either dialysis or a transplant). Now, the research doesn’t prove PPIs cause chronic kidney disease but their findings should be considered serious enough to at least pay attention to and unless you really, really need them, you shouldn’t take them. In fact, it almost makes more sense to try alternative therapies first and use the PPIs as a last resort. Once you start to look at the issue, you really only have two options- treat your body better or take PPIs (and maybe play russian roulette with the outcome).

 

Please share with family and loved ones and call with all your healthcare concerns and for your personalized healthcare plan.

 

 

 

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Dr A Sullivan

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Foods, Uncategorized

Foods For Your Brain

brain

Top Six Foods for Your Brain

That said, let’s return to the topic at hand. These are my top picks when it comes to foods that nourish your brain, heart, gut, muscles, immune system and more. Can you boost your brainpower with the foods you eat? You bet. Topping the list of brain-boosting superfoods are foods high in healthy fats. This should come as no surprise considering your brain is mainly made up of fats.

 

  1. Avocados are a great source of healthy oleic acid (monounsaturated fat, which is also found in olive oil), which helps decrease inflammation.1 Avocados have also been shown to effectively combat nearly every aspect of metabolic syndrome, a risk factor of dementia and most other chronic disease. Aside from providing healthy fats, avocados also provide nearly 20 essential nutrients, including potassium, which helps balance your vitally important potassium to sodium ratio.

 

  1. Organic coconut oil. Besides being excellent for your thyroid and your metabolism, its medium-chain fatty acids (MCTs) are a source of ketone bodies, which act as an alternate source of brain fuel that can help prevent the brain atrophy associated with dementia. MCTs also impart a number of health benefits, including raising your body’s metabolism and fighting off pathogens.

 

  1. Grass fed butter and ghee. About 20 percent of butterfat consists of short- and medium-chain fatty acids, which are used right away for quick energy and therefore don’t contribute to fat levels in your blood. Therefore, a significant portion of the butter you consume is used immediately for energy, similar to a carbohydrate. Ghee, which has a higher smoke point than butter, is a healthy fat particularly well-suited for cooking. It also has a longer shelf life.

 

  1. Organic pastured eggs. Many of the healthiest foods are rich in cholesterol and saturated fats, and eggs are no exception. Cholesterol is needed for the regulation of protein pathways involved in cell signaling and other cellular processes. It’s particularly important for your brain, which contains about 25 percent of the cholesterol in your body.

 

It is vital for synapse formation, i.e., the connections between your neurons, which allow you to think, learn new things and form memories. For a simple snack, see this healthy deviled egg recipe.

 

  1. Wild-caught Alaskan salmon. While most fish suffer drawbacks related to contamination, wild-caught Alaskan salmon and other small, fatty fish, such as sardines and anchovies, are still noteworthy for their health benefits in light of their low risk of contamination.

 

Wild-caught Alaskan salmon and other oily fish are high in omega-3 fats necessary for optimal brain (and heart) health. Research2 also suggests eating oily fish once or twice a week may increase your life span. Avoid farmed salmon, however, as they’ve been identified as one of the most toxic foods in the world. For tips on how to cook salmon steaks, see this salmon cooking guide.

 

  1. Organic raw nuts such as macadamia and pecans. Macadamia nuts have the highest fat and lowest protein and carb content of any nut, and about 60 percent of the fat is the monounsaturated fat oleic acid. This is about the level found in olives, which are well-known for their health benefits.

 

A single serving of macadamia nuts also provides 58 percent of what you need in manganese and 23 percent of the recommended daily value of thiamin. Pecans are a close second to macadamia nuts on the fat and protein scale, and they also contain anti-inflammatory magnesium, heart healthy oleic acid, phenolic antioxidants and immune-boosting manganese.

If you need help with what foods to eat and not eat with other medications you are taking, please give us a call.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

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Health and Disease, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Melanoma Found to Be Easily Prevented

womanface.jpg

Melanoma (skin cancer) found to be easily prevented with low-cost Vitamin B-3

 

Researchers from the University of Sydney, Australia believe that nicotinamide (vitamin B3) can be used to prevent the incidence of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer. The study, published in Photodermatology, Photoimmunology, and Photomedicine, demonstrates the efficacy of vitamin B3 in reducing or even reversing DNA damage and inflammation caused by ultraviolet radiation. Authors of the review say that more research into the topic is necessary but conclude that should their data be further verified, it could lead to a cheap and potent solution to skin cancer.

 

The team noted that nicotinamide costs around $10 per month if taken at the recommended dosage of one gram a day. This is significantly less expensive than conventional cancer therapies, which usually include chemotherapy sessions and various forms of medications.

 

The vitamin therapy was observed to be effective in decreasing the incidence of non-melanoma skin cancer among high-risk individuals. Dr. Gary Halliday, senior author of the study said that randomized placebo controlled trials are now needed to confirm a similar effect among high-risk melanoma patients. (Related: Fight skin cancer through nutrition not sunscreen.)

 

A primer on vitamin B3 and melanoma

 

Vitamin B3 is known by many names including niacin, niacinamide, nicotinic acid, and nicotinamide. It can be sourced through the consumption of lean meats, brewer’s yeast, whole grains, and nuts. Most people, however, tend to get their vitamin B3 through supplements.

 

Vitamin B3 is essential for healthy nervous and digestive function and promotes skin health. Those with cholesterol problems can also take the vitamin to balance their triglyceride levels. There is some evidence that also points to the vitamin’s use in the production of bile salts and the synthesis of sex hormones.

 

The vitamin is mostly recommended however for improving brain health. Certain psychiatric symptoms are claimed to be alleviated with an ample dose of vitamin B3. Preliminary studies also suggest that vitamin B3 can prevent dementia.

 

While no side-effects have been seen in taking niacin through food, sourcing the vitamin through supplements can lead to various adverse conditions. An overdose of niacin can lead to stomach irritation, nausea, liver damage, gout, and blurred vision.

 

Vitamin B3’s exact uses and functions are still being determined by medical science. One of the areas that scientists are looking into is the vitamin’s capacity to prevent cancer.

 

YOU CAN NOT TAKE A VITAMIN B3 SUPPLEMENT.  You need to talk to a healthcare advisor on how to take Vitamin B3correctly and what else you MUST take with it.  If you healthcare advisor does not tell you, or comes up with something else, run, do not walk to someone that does know.   Call us!

 

Melanoma is a type of cancer that usually forms on the skin. It begins when the pigment-producing cell, melanin, begins to mutate and multiply rapidly. Because melanoma forms on the skin, it is relatively easy to detect and treat early. Doctors say that 90 percent of all melanoma cases are caused by exposure to ultraviolet rays from natural and artificial sources, including indoor tanning beds. The remaining ten percent takes into account family history, genetics, and other environmental factors.

 

The prognosis for melanoma is normally good, although this depends on how early the cancer is detected.

 

It is important that you are aware of the warning signs of melanoma. This means consistently checking for abnormal moles, brown spots, or growths on the skin. Take note of these red flags:

 

Asymmetry – Draw a line in the middle of a mole and see if both halves match. Moles that are asymmetrical are more likely to be cancerous.

Border – Benign moles have smooth, even borders. Watch out for moles that have scalloped or notches borders.

Color – Noncancerous moles are usually one color. Having a mole that has a variety of colors is a warning sign that something is wrong.

Diameter – Malignant moles are normally larger than benign ones.

Evolving – Moles that seem to change over time can be cancerous.

 

Please call with all your healthcare concerns and questions.  We can help!

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr J J

312-972-WELL

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Diets and Weight Loss, Health and Disease, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

The Link Between Sugar and Depression

staring

The Link Between Sugar and Depression

 

Men consuming more than 67 grams of sugar per day were 23 percent more likely to develop anxiety or depression over the course of five years than those whose sugar consumption was less than 40 grams per day

Other studies have also linked high-sugar diets to a higher risk of depression and anxiety, showing a low-sugar diet is an important part of the prevention and treatment of common mental health problems

Sugar increases your risk of depression by contributing to insulin and leptin resistance, suppressing BDNF, affecting dopamine, damaging your mitochondria and promoting chronic inflammation

 

How Sugar Raises Your Depression Risk

A number of other studies have also identified mechanisms by which excessive sugar consumption can wreak havoc with your mental health. For example, eating excessive amounts of sugar:

 

  • Contributes to insulin and leptin resistance and impaired signaling, which play a significant role in mental health.

 

  • Suppresses activity of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a key growth hormone that promotes healthy brain neurons. BDNF levels tend to be critically low in both depression and schizophrenia, and animal models suggest this may actually be a causative factor.

 

  • Affects dopamine, a neurotransmitter that fuels your brain’s reward system9 (hence sugar’s addictive potential10,11,12) and is known to play a role in mood disorders.13

 

  • Damages your mitochondria, which can have body-wide effects. Your mitochondria generate the vast majority of the energy (adenosine triphosphate or ATP) in your body. When sugar is your primary fuel, excessive reactive oxygen species (ROS) and secondary free radicals are created, which damage cellular mitochondrial membranes and DNA.

 

Needless to say, as your mitochondria are damaged, the energy currency in your body declines and your brain will struggle to work properly. Healthy dietary fats, on the other hand, create far fewer ROS and free radicals. Fats are also critical for the health of cellular membranes and many other biological functions, including and especially the functioning of your brain.

 

Among the most important fats for brain function and mental health are the long-chained animal-based omega-3 fats DHA and EPA. Not only are they anti-inflammatory, but DHA is actually a component in every cell of your body, and 90 percent of the omega-3 fat found in brain tissue is DHA.

 

  • Promotes chronic inflammation which, in the long term, disrupts the normal functioning of your immune system, thereby raising your risk of depression. A 2004 cross-cultural analysis14 of the relationship between diet and mental illness found a strong link between high sugar consumption and the risk for depression and schizophrenia.

 

It also concluded that dietary predictors of depression are similar to those for diabetes and heart disease. One of the hallmarks of these diseases is chronic inflammation, which sugar is a primary driver of. So, excessive amounts of sugar can truly set off an avalanche of negative health events — both physical and mental.

 

Inflammation May Be the No. 1 Risk Factor for Depression

Another previous study published in the International Breastfeeding Journal15 found inflammation may be more than just another risk factor. It may actually be the primary risk factor that underlies all others. According to the researchers:

 

“The old paradigm described inflammation as simply one of many risk factors for depression. The new paradigm is based on more recent research that has indicated that physical and psychological stressors increase inflammation. These recent studies constitute an important shift in the depression paradigm: inflammation is not simply a risk factor; it is the risk factor that underlies all the others.

 

Moreover, inflammation explains why psychosocial, behavioral and physical risk factors increase the risk of depression. This is true for depression in general and for postpartum depression in particular.”

 

In another study,16 the researchers suggested “depression may be a neuropsychiatric manifestation of a chronic inflammatory syndrome.” Here, they refer specifically to inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. Studies have also found depression is closely linked to dysfunction in the gut-brain axis, in which gut inflammation plays an important role.

 

Artificial Sweeteners Are Also Strongly Associated With Depression

Unfortunately, many are under the mistaken belief they can protect their health by swapping refined sugar for artificial sweeteners. Nothing could be further from the truth, as research suggests artificial sweeteners may actually be more detrimental to your health than regular sugar. For example:

 

  • In a 1986 evaluation of reactions to food additives,17 aspartame (in commonly consumed amounts) was linked to mood alterations such as anxiety, agitation, irritability and depression.

 

  • A 1993 study18 found that individuals with mood disorders are particularly sensitive to aspartame, suggesting its use in this population should be discouraged. In the clinical study, the project was halted by the Institutional Review Board after a total of 13 individuals had completed the study because of the severity of reactions within the group of patients with a history of depression.

 

  • In 2008, researchers asserted that excessive aspartame ingestion might be involved in the pathogenesis of certain mental disorders and may compromise emotional functioning.19

 

  • Research presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in 2013 found that consumption of sweetened beverages — whether they’re sweetened with sugar or artificial sweeteners — was associated with an increased risk of depression.20,21 The study included nearly 264,000 American adults over the age of 50 who were enrolled in an AARP diet and health study.

 

At the outset, participants filled out a detailed dietary survey. At a 10-year follow-up, they were asked whether they’d been diagnosed with depression at any point during the past decade.

 

Those who drank more than four cans or glasses of diet soda or other artificially sweetened beverages had a nearly 30 percent higher risk of depression compared to those who did not consume diet drinks. Regular soda drinkers had a 22 percent increased risk.

 

To Cure Depression, Be Sure to Address Root Causes

According to the World Health Organization, depression is now the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide,22,23 affecting an estimated 322 million people, including more than 16 million Americans. Globally, rates of depression increased by 18 percent between 2005 and 2015.24 According to the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health, 11 percent of Americans over the age of 12 are on antidepressant drugs. Among women in their 40 and 50s, 1 in 4 is on antidepressants.25

 

While a number of different factors can contribute to depression, I’m convinced diet plays an enormous role. There’s no doubt in my mind that radically reducing or eliminating sugar and artificial sweeteners from your diet is a crucial step to prevent and/or address depression.

 

One simple way to dramatically reduce your sugar intake is to replace processed foods with real whole foods. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is associated with lower odds of depression and anxiety,26,27 an effect ascribed to antioxidants that help combat inflammation in your body. Certain nutrients are also known to cause symptoms of depression when lacking, so it’s important to eat a varied whole food diet.

 

Another major contributor to depression and anxiety is microwave exposure from wireless technologies, which I address below. To suggest that depression is rooted in poor diet and other lifestyle factors does not detract from the fact that it’s a serious problem that needs to be addressed with compassion and non-judgment. It simply shifts the conversation about what the most appropriate answers and remedies are.

 

Considering the many hazards associated with antidepressants (the efficacy of which have been repeatedly found to be right on par with placebo), it would be wise to address the known root causes of depression, which are primarily lifestyle-based. Drugs, even when they do work, do not actually fix the problem. They only mask it.

 

Antidepressants may also worsen the situation, as many are associated with an increased risk of suicide, violence and worsened mental health in the long term. So, before you resort to medication, please consider addressing the lifestyle strategies listed below.

Nondrug Solutions for Depression

Limit microwave exposure from wireless technologies

 

Studies have linked excessive exposure to electromagnetic fields to an increased risk of both depression and suicide.28 Power lines and high-voltage cables appear to be particularly troublesome. Addiction to or “high engagement” with mobile devices can also trigger depression and anxiety, according to recent research from the University of Illinois.29

 

Research30 by Dr. Martin Pall reveals a previously unknown mechanism of biological harm from microwaves emitted by cellphones and other wireless technologies, which helps explain why these technologies can have such a potent impact on your mental health.

 

Embedded in your cell membranes are voltage gated calcium channels (VGCCs), which are activated by microwaves. When that happens, about 1 million calcium ions per second are released, which stimulates the release of nitric oxide (NO) inside your cell and mitochondria. The NO then combines with superoxide to form peroxynitrite, which in turn creates hydroxyl free radicals, which are the most destructive free radicals known to man.

 

Hydroxyl free radicals decimate mitochondrial and nuclear DNA, their membranes and proteins. The end result is mitochondrial dysfunction, which we now know is at the heart of most chronic disease. The tissues with the highest density of VGCCs are your brain, the pacemaker in your heart and male testes.

 

Hence, health problems such as Alzheimer’s, anxiety, depression, autism, cardiac arrhythmias and infertility can be directly linked to excessive microwave exposure.

 

If you struggle with anxiety or depression, be sure to limit your exposure to wireless technology. Simple measures include turning your Wi-Fi off at night, not carrying your cellphone on your body and not keeping portable phones, cellphones and other electric devices in your bedroom.

 

Call us for information and help with preventative medicine.  If you are not comfortable with that, make sure your physician is certified or had done a specialty in preventative medicine. The trick question to ask is, where did you go to school for that.   Easy to look up, not many schools offer it.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

Dr Anna Sullivan

312-972-WELL

 

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Diets and Weight Loss, Uncategorized

Forget the Diet! Eat your Way Fit!

nutrienddensefoods

 

Eat Your Way Fit With Nutrient-Dense Foods

The Benefits of Nutrient Density Instead of Diet for Weight Management

 

Going on a diet can feel overwhelming and the results typically unsatisfying. Diets and diet trends are a billion-dollar market targeting consumers who want to lose fat and gain muscle. Many diets also lack nutrients, according to research.

 

Have you considered not dieting? Instead of continued caloric restriction leaving you hungry, tired, and frustrated, maybe a different approach would be better.

 

 

How about trying nutrient-dense foods as an alternative to reduce body fat? This is not a diet but simply a change in the kind of food you eat to achieve a healthy body. The idea is to eat cleaner, not less, as a lifestyle.

 

Eating nutrient-dense foods even allows you to eat more and still lose fat. This is often hard to grasp for long-term dieters used to severe calorie restriction for reducing fat. The difference is the quality of nutrient-dense foods vs the calories and how they function in our body.

 

What Are Nutrient Dense Foods?

Nutrient-dense foods contain macro and micronutrients important for our health. Macronutrients are carbohydrates, proteins, and fats providing calories (energy) to our body. Micronutrients are vitamins and minerals also coming from nutrient-rich foods. We require all nutrients in varying quantities for optimal fitness. Research indicates nutrient-rich foods help boost our metabolism and enable us to efficiently lose body fat.

 

Protein is the powerhouse macronutrient for muscle recovery. Select healthier options like chicken breast, turkey, fish, or albacore tuna over processed cold cuts or ham. Eating nutrient-dense protein means keeping it cleaner and leaner.

Carbohydrates are the primary energy source macronutrient for optimal health and fitness. Nutrient-dense carbs include a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Avoid eating processed foods, white products and pastries if you want to lose fat and gain muscle.

 

Fats are the secondary energy source macronutrient for optimal body functioning. Keep your fats nutrient-rich by avoiding saturated fast foods, creamy salad dressings, and cheesy casseroles. Opt for extra-virgin olive oil, avocado, and natural peanut butter to boost your metabolism and lose body fat.

How Do They Reduce Body Fat?

Nutrient-dense foods are high in nutrients and low in calories allowing us to eat cleaner not less to reduce body fat. Superfoods or real foods are also common names for nutrient-dense foods. They’re easily digested and nutrients utilized for proper body functioning. Chronic studies indicate eating nutrient-dense foods as an effective and healthy way to lose weight.

 

Research shows optimal body fat levels are better achieved when we focus on food quality rather than calorie counting. This is more of a statement of how nutrient-dense foods are full of essential nutrients but lower in calorie. We can eat more for lesser calories and feel satisfied throughout the day.

 

In order to lose body fat, our body requires adequate amounts of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. Eating nutrient-dense foods stimulates our metabolism and creates a fat-burning machine. Our body functions better supplied with the energy required to burn fat and gain muscle.

 

 

 

 

Nutrient-dense foods help reduce body fat through several functions:

 

Provides the necessary antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other essential nutrients for optimal body functioning.

Increases our metabolism and stimulates the body to effectively burn body fat.

Balanced nutrients maintain our energy level for improved workouts.

Proper nutrient amounts help regulate blood sugar favoring normal values instead of spiked glucose (sugar). Controlling our blood sugar is essential to reducing body fat.

Promotes satiety and curbs cravings.

Improves leptin hormone function in the body and better regulates fat stores.

The Research

Research is an important step to obtain evidence that supports or opposes scientific claims. Many diets are flooding the market with grandiose promises but without positive clinical findings to back it up. Unfortunately, many of us fail to take the time to research the facts before trying the next diet trend.

 

Chronic studies on nutrient-dense foods show positive feedback for fat loss. They’re high antioxidant values are indicated to reduce the risk of disease and hypertension. Research shows nutrient rich foods as an effective way to reduce body fat and improve overall health.

 

An article published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition compares nutrient intake and links to obesity. A large study group was divided by body mass index (BMI) levels ranging from normal weight, overweight and obese. The research indicated those participants who were overweight or obese had low intakes of micronutrients and high nutrient deficiencies. The normal weight group consumed a regular menu of nutrient-dense foods.

 

Other research on using nutrient-dense foods to break the cycle of obesity appears in the National Institutes of Health. A workshop was conducted examining improved quality of life and health at every age eating nutrient-dense foods as preventative medicine. It was indicated using the nutrient density approach as a valuable nutritional education tool. It was explained eating nutrient dense foods could help resolve nutrient deficiencies and decrease the risk of being overfat or obese.

 

Another study published in the Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine examined the effects of nutrient-dense foods on long-term weight loss. Research participants were seeking dietary counseling to lose weight. The trial included a high nutrient density meal plan with recipes for each volunteer. The patients were followed for a two-year period recording total weight, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure. Some participants dropped out but those 33 continuing after one year lost an average of 31 pounds. Nineteen patients returned for the two-year follow-up and each lost an average of 53 pounds. Significant decreases in cholesterol and improved blood pressure were also recorded.

 

The common thread with all research feedback is nutrient-dense foods have the “potential to provide sustainable, significant, long-term weight loss.” Additionally, nutrient rich foods are shown to improve cholesterol, blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease. Eating nutrient-dense foods as a lifestyle appears to greatly reduce body fat and improve our health in general.

 

Are Some Nutrient Dense Foods Better Than Others?

National nutrition guidelines recommend eating nutrient-dense foods to help reduce chronic disease and obesity. An article published in the Journal of Nutrition recommends a science-based nutrition profiling system assigning a nutrient value per food.

 

A study published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) developed a classification scheme for powerhouse fruits and vegetables. Powerhouse foods are described as those helping reduce the risk of chronic disease. So, yes there will be foods higher in nutrient value than others.

 

Nutrient-dense foods with a value greater than 10 are considered powerhouse fruits and vegetables (PFV) according to the study. The following PFV value system is provided to improve our understanding and health benefits of nutrient-dense foods:

 

Powerhouse Fruits and Vegetables Value System

Food

Nutrient Density Score

 

Food      Nutrient Density Score

Watercress         100        Scallion 27.35

Chinese cabbage              91.99     Kohlrabi               25.92

Chard    89.27     Cauliflower         25.13

Beet green          87.08     Cabbage              24.51

Spinach 86.43     Carrot   22.60

Chicory 73.36     Tomato 20.37

Leaf lettuce         70.73     Lemon   18.72

Parsley  65.59     Iceberg lettuce  18.28

Romaine lettuce               63.48     Strawberry          17.59

Collard green     62.49     Radish   16.91

Turnip green      62.12     Winter squash    13.89

Mustard green   61.39     Orange  12.91

Endive   60.44     Lime      12.23

Chive     54.80     Grapefruit (pink/red)       11.64

Kale       49.07     Rutabaga             11.58

Dandelion green              46.34     Turnip    11.43

Red pepper         41.26     Blackberry           11.39

Arugula 37.65     Leek       10.69

Broccoli 34.89     Sweet potato     10.51

Pumpkin               33.82     Grapefruit (white)            10.47

Brussels sprout  32.23

nutrient density calculated as average percent daily value based on a 2,000 kcal/d diet, meeting criteria for 17 nutrients as provided by 100 kcal of food. Scores above 100 were capped at 100 meaning the food provides on average 100% DV of the qualifying nutrients per 100 kcal.

 

Another highly referenced nutrient density chart was developed by nutrition expert and board-certified physician Dr. Joel Fuhrman. He believes your health is directly related to the nutrient density of your diet. Fuhrman created the aggregate nutrient density index (ANDI). The ANDI ranks common foods “on the basis of how many nutrients they deliver to your body for each calorie consumed.”

 

Dr. Fuhrman’s Aggregate Nutrient Density Index (ANDI)

Sample Nutrient               Calorie Density Score      Sample Nutrient               Calorie Density Score

Kale                                 1000                                       Sunflower                                   64

Collard Greens                 1000                                      Kidney Beans                      64

Mustard Greens               1000                                     Green Peas                                                        63

Watercress                       1000                                           Cherries                                   55

Swiss Chard                      895                                         Pineapple                                     54

Bok Choy                           865                                          Apple                                                         53

Spinach                              707                                     Mango                                               53

Arugula                              604                                      Peanut Butter                                  51

Romaine                             510                                      Corn                                                   45

Brussels Sprouts               490                                      Pistachio Nuts                                  37

Carrots                              458                                       Oatmeal                                            36

Cabbage                          434                                         Shrimp                                                36

Broccoli                              340                                      Salmon                                               34

Cauliflower                        315                                      Eggs                                                    31

Bell Peppers        265        Milk, 1%              31

Asparagus           245        Walnuts               30

Mushrooms        238        Bananas               30

Tomato 186        Whole Wheat Bread       30

Strawberries       182        Almonds              28

Sweet Potato     181        Avocado              28

Zucchini               164        Brown Rice         28

Artichoke             145        White Potato     28

Blueberries          132        Plain Yogurt, Low Fat      28

Iceberg Lettuce 127        Cashews              27

Grapes  119        Chicken Breast   24

Pomegranates    119        Ground Beef, 85% lean   21

Cantaloupe         118        Feta Cheese        20

Onions  109        French Fries        12

Flax Seeds           103        White Pasta        11

Orange  98           Cheddar Cheese               11

Edamame            98           Apple Juice         11

Cucumber            87           Olive Oil               10

Tofu       82           White Bread       9

Sesame Seeds    74           Vanilla Ice Cream             9

Lentils   72           Corn Chips          7

Peaches               65           Cola       1

Bottom Line

Many diets lack nutrients only certain foods can provide. Eating nutrient-dense foods will allow you to skip the diet, eat more, and still lose fat.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

  1. Carrothers

Dir. Of Personalize Healthcare and Preventative Medicine

https://www.facebook.com/angelique.rose.50

 

312-972-WELL

HealthWellnessAssociates@gmail.com

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Diets and Weight Loss, Foods, Uncategorized

Benefits of Asparagus with Recipe

Asparagus-Side-Dish

 

Asparagus is a fantastic healing vegetable that is high in essential minerals such as selenium, zinc, and manganese which are vital for a strong and healthy immune system. This is especially important if you have a family line of breast cancer or cardiac problems.  It is also high in vitamins A, K, and B-complex including folate which is a building block for a healthy cardiovascular system and for woman who are trying to conceive.

 

Asparagus contains aspartic acid which is an amino acid that neutralizes excess amounts of ammonia in the body that is often the cause of exhaustion, headaches, and poor digestion. Perfect of people with gout. Asparagus contains significant amounts of healthy fiber and protein which helps to maintain blood sugar levels, prevent constipation, stabilize digestion, and stop the urge to overeat.

 

It also contains a compound called asparagine which is a natural diuretic that breaks up oxalic and uric acid crystals stored in muscles and in the kidneys and eliminates them through the urine. This natural diuretic is helpful in reducing water retention, bloating, and swelling in the body.

 

Asparagus is also high in glutathione which is an antioxidant powerhouse and particularly beneficial for those suffering with autoimmune conditions, liver disease, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Asparagus is known to help strengthen the liver, kidneys, skin, ligaments, and bones and it’s chlorophyll content makes it a great blood builder. Asparagus also contains inulin which encourages good bacteria in the gut that boosts nutrient absorption and helps to keep the immune system functioning properly. Asparagus is a nutrient-packed, delicious vegetable that can be eaten raw or steamed and added to soup, salads, stews, rice, and/or veggie dishes.

 

 

 

ASPARAGUS WITH LEMON BUTTER SAUCE RECIPE

 

FOR THE ASPARAGUS

water

salt

2 pound asparagus, trimmed

 

FOR THE LEMON BUTTER SAUCE

3 tablespoons fresh meyer lemon juice

3 tablespoons organic , low-sodium vegetable broth

1 teaspoon white vinegar

3 tablespoons heavy cream

1 teaspoon sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter , cut into pats*

salt and fresh ground pepper , to taste

OPTIONAL

Garnish with parmesan cheese , fresh chopped parsley and lemon zest

 

Instructions

FOR THE ASPARAGUS

Fill a large pot with about 2 inches of salted water and bring to a boil.

Add asparagus to the boiling water; cover with a lid and let it steam until it’s cooked to your liking, about 5 to 8 minutes, depending on the thickness of the asparagus.

Drain. Transfer asparagus to a large bowl of ice water to cool, and drain again.

In the meantime, prepare the LEMON BUTTER SAUCE

In a saucepan combine lemon juice, vegetable broth, and white vinegar. Cooking over medium heat, reduce the sauce by half.

Turn heat down to a simmer and whisk in the cream; keep whisking to break up the curds.

Add sugar and continue to whisk while adding the pats of butter, letting each pat melt into the sauce before you add the next.

Season with salt and pepper.

Simmer until sauce begins to thicken.

Remove from heat and let stand couple of minutes. Sauce will thicken as it stands.

Taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly.

Transfer cooked asparagus to a serving plate.

Serve the lemon butter sauce by drizzling over the asparagus or on the side.

Recipe Notes

*IF you prefer a creamier sauce, add more butter, about a tablespoon at a time.

 

Please share with family and friends, thank you.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived Article

Dr P Carrothers

312-972-WELL

 

HealthWellnessAssociates@gmail.com

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Foods, Uncategorized

Bacon Jam

baconjam

Bacon Jam

 

“Bacon Jam will win you legions of fans. Use the power wisely. I know of one marriage proposal after this jam was served with breakfast.” Don’t limit this jam to breakfast, try it as a sandwich spread or mixed with cream cheese as a party dip. Get creative.

 

Ingredients

 

3 lbs. bacon (use a mixture of maple, thick-cut, regular and smoked lean bacon)

4 large yellow onions, peeled and thinly sliced

2-4 cloves garlic

1 Cup apple cider vinegar

1 Cup packed light brown sugar

1 1/2 Cups very strong brewed black coffee (try using espresso)

1/2 Cup pure maple syrup

1 tsp. pepper

 

 

 

Directions

 

Cut the bacon slices into 1-inch pieces. Place the bacon in a Dutch oven/heavy large pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the bacon is browned. It is important none of the bacon or bits on the bottom of the pan burn during the entire cooking process, so ease back a bit on the heat and let it cook longer if you are unsure. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Drain all but 2 TB. of the drippings from the pan, (Connie stores them in the fridge for other recipes—we did end up with 1.5 cups extra drippings!). Place the Dutch oven back over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic. Stir well and reduce heat to medium. Continue cooking for about 8 minutes, or until the onions are mostly translucent. Add the remaining ingredients (except for the bacon) and stir well. Reduce the heat to low. Stir well, then raise the heat to high, bring to a boil, stirring frequently, and boil hard for 2 minutes. Add the bacon, reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally to make sure things aren’t sticking. Add 1/4 Cup of water if the mixture seems to be drying out. When the onions are meltingly soft and the liquid is thick and syrupy (our batch took about 1 1/2 hours at low heat and we did not need any extra water) remove from the heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a food processor or blender and pulse several times or until the jam is almost the consistency of chunky peanut butter. Scrape into a jar or a container with a tight-fitting lid. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. This can be served cold, room temperature or warmed.

 

Prep. time:15 minutes

Cooking time: 2 hours

Serves: 24

 

 

Nutritional Information

 

Servings 32-34; Serving Size 2 TB. (92g); Calories 240; Calories from fat 170; Total fat 19g; Cholesterol 30mg; Sodium 360mg; Carbohydrate 12g; Dietary Fiber 0g; Sugars 10g; Protein 5g.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

P Carrothers

312-972-WELL

HeathWellnessAssociates@gmail.com