I want to thank all the members of the Lisa’s Lentils Healthy Happy Hour Book Club who had the opportunity to come to the meeting today. We had a fabulous phone call with Alex Jamieson, author of “The Great American Detox Diet”. Alex gave us some helpful hints on our own health as well as answered questions regarding fats and dairy. Book Club member Sharon V. created her own experience of Super Size Me by eating three McDonald’s meals over two days which included breakfast and a small dinner the first day followed by a more substantial dinner the next evening. She felt sick for several days after. What is interesting is that several teenagers and college students eat McDonald’s as a regular part of their diet. Alex explained that those individuals who eat McDonald’s regularly as well as others who might not eat McDonald’s daily but might eat Pop Tarts, sugary cereals, boxed lunches and fast food dinners are sick, they are so used to being sick that this is a normal feeling for them. It’s only when we have a healthy digestive system where we realize everything is much better for us. Unhealthy digestion leads not only to bloating, diarrhea and constipation, but can also cause headaches, skin breakouts and depression. Alex suggests a high alkaline diet which consists of fermented foods like raw sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha tea as well as adding prebiotic like dandelion greens, dandelion tea, onions, oats, sprouted bread such as Ezekiel, chicory Root Tea and Teeccino. One major piece of advice was to never eat something that has high fructose corn syrup, a big no-no. This sugar product made from genetically modified corn, is extremely harmful to our bodies. According to the Global Healing Center, here are five major risks associated with high fructose corn syrup:
1. Significant Risk of Weight Gain & Obesity – The list of studies that show HFCS to cause increased weight gain over other forms of sweeteners is much too long to put into this post. One of the better, and more recent ones, was conducted at Princeton University, and found that rats that were fed HFCS gained fat 300% more quickly than those fed an equal (or slightly larger) dose of fruit-derived sugar.
2. Increased Risk of Developing Type-2 Diabetes – Over the years, consumption of high-fructose corn syrup can lead to a huge increase in the likelihood of developing diabetes. The worst part about it is how easily this life-long condition can be avoided in most cases. Excessive amounts of soda, energy drinks and junk-food simply aren’t worth losing a foot or going blind or harming your children.
3. Hypertension and Elevated “Bad” Cholesterol Levels – High-fructose doesn’t just make your body fat. It makes your heart fat too. There is a strong link between the irresponsible consumption of high fructose corn syrup and elevated triglyceride and HDL (bad cholesterol) levels. Together these can cause arterial plague build-up and eventually lead to dangerous heart conditions including hypertension, heart disease, and even stroke.
4. High Fructose Corn Syrup & Long-Term Liver Damage – This is a big one that a lot people overlook. Like anything else you eat or drink, HFCS is processed by your liver, gallbladder and kidneys. And it’s especially destructive to your liver. When combined with a sedentary lifestyle, permanent liver scarring can occur. This greatly diminishes the organ’s ability to process out toxins and, over time, can lead to an expansive range of other negative health concerns. Another study suggests that HFCS may also cause fatty liver.
5. Mercury Exposure from HFCSEven if you were already aware of previously mentioned risks associated with corn syrup, there’s a good chance that you didn’t know it also often loaded with alarmingly high levels of mercury. In a study conducted just last year they found mercury in over 50 percent of the samples tested. Mercury exposure can result in irreversible brain and nervous system damage – especially in young, growing bodies. This is especially worrisome with the abundance of HFCS in children-target foodstuffs.
I also asked Alex how she felt about diets like Joel Fuhrman’s “Eat to Live/Eat for Health” which stays away from all oils in cooking and in other recipes. Alex explained each individual has different needs and while some can tolerate a diet without oil, those of us living in drier climates may do well with 1/2-1 teaspoon of Udo’s 3.6.9 oil that can be found in the refrigerated section of whole foods. By using this oil in smoothies, dressings or stirring in oatmeal, it will help us with dry skin and to lubricate our joints, and our brain.
Alex also gave excellent advise to Mary D. who had a question regarding whole grains vs. protein. Again, each individual is different so what works in a specific diet for one individual might not work for another. If you cannot tolerate whole grains, adding protein and vegetables like fish, eggs or vegetarian source of beans may be a good addition to the diet for energy.
We also discussed autoimmune disorders, leaky gut, and raw dairy.
Check out Alex’s website at www.alexandrajamieson.com and subscribe to her newsletter to obtain your free Food and Mood Guide which is absolutely fantastic!
The next Lisa’s Lentils Healthy Happy Hour meeting will take place in brown bag format Monday, November 5th, in Regent Hall, room 302 on the University of Colorado Boulder Campus from Noon-1:00 p.m. Not only will we discuss the remaining 4 chapters of the book, but we will also discuss healthy lifestyle in general. I look forward to seeing all of you then. And don’t forget to check out updates on my website http://www.lisas-lentils.com for the latest in nutrition news, services, and events.