Welcome to the VIBRANT LIVING NEWSLETTER
In this issue there’s an article on the importance of greens, one on stopping cancer with fruits and veggies, a super recipe by Early Girl, a short snippet on supplement quality, some great feedback on my B-12 discussion from last newsletter, and a few other tidbits to stimulate the mind. Please enjoy!
"The greatest gift we can give others is our caring, connection and gentle guidance. Whether you realize it or not, you are a role model for the people in your life. Your every action is being watched. Someone is looking to you for inspiration, support and leadership." --Keith Harrell, author, Connect: Building Success through People, Purpose and Performance.
“We use three kinds of enzymes: metabolic enzymes to run our bodies, digestive enzymes to digest food and food enzymes in raw foods that enable the food to partially self-digest, thus conserving our bodies' limited enzyme-producing capacities. Food enzymes are active, or "alive," in uncooked food. Once a food is heated, they chemically degrade, or "die." By conservative estimates, enzymes may begin dying at temperatures as low as 105?F. Within 30 minutes at 119 to 129 degrees, all are dead. Cooking alters an enzyme's "lock and key" configuration so that it can no longer perform its intended function.”
- Susan E. Schenck, The Live Food Factor
Eat Your Greens
If there was one piece of advice I could share with everyone, no matter what diet they’re on, it would be to include more greens in their diet. Leafy greens are full of minerals, are incredibly alkalizing, and contain the energy of the sun condensed into their leaves.
Whether you’re eating a standard western diet, a cooked vegetarian diet, or a raw food diet the benefits of leafy greens cannot be overemphasized. The standard western diet is very acidic and needs greens to help buffer all the acidic byproducts, or dis-ease and problems are sure to develop, just look at the state of our so called health system, completely over loaded. Many times a vegetarian diet can be acidic as well if salads and greens are neglected so it’s important to include a large amount of greenage in that diet.
The raw food diet has a particular need for the greens because this diet is such a cleansing diet, which means stored toxins, which are mainly acidic, will come flowing out of the body and need to be buffered. I believe that most of the dental issues raw fooders can have is associated with neglecting the importance of large amounts of greens in their diet. Greens contain the minerals needed to buffer the acidic waste, to nourish and rebuild a healthy body, and to maintain that healthy balance in the not so perfect environment we find ourselves living in today. If greens are missing the body can rob calcium and other alkaline minerals from bones and teeth to buffer the huge acidic load being released from the cells on this cleansing diet.
A person can thrive for several years eating mainly fruit, but it has been my experience that most people cannot continue to thrive on that diet, unless perhaps they live in a pristine area and are eating tree ripe mineral rich fruits.
Sometimes even eating large amounts of greens is not enough due to the compromised digestive systems most people have. That’s where juicing, green smoothies and blended salads can really make a difference. These foods are masticated for you with the nutrients then being far more available than if eaten in a salad. And of course juicing is the easiest form for your body to digest and extract nutrients with virtually all the fiber removed. These methods can allow your body to get the nutrients it needs to heal your digestive issues and make eating whole foods and salads not only enjoyable but nutritious as well.
It is also possible that a person may need to supplement with digestive enzymes, Hydrochloric acid (HCL), and or probiotics which are friendly bugs to repopulate the intestinal tract. Over the years I have used all of these at one time or another and feel they were important in putting my body back in balance to where my body was strong enough to take over and run things naturally.
Some people would say that taking supplements isn’t natural, and of course that’s true. It’s also true that we no longer live in a natural world, and if on occasion or more often one needs to supplement to be healthy then I feel that’s more important than any dogma.
As many of you know by now I have a large green smoothie every morning which gives me energy for hours and makes me feel great. I also enjoy green juices in the afternoon, something that gives me great nutrition without the bulk of a meal to slow me down. Now this is what works for me and we’re all different, and at different stages on our journey so it’s important to do what feels right and ultimately works for you.
The one thing I do believe that we all have in common is a need for more greens in the diet. Very important is variety, as all greens contain very minute amounts of natural toxins designed to protect them from foraging animals. If we eat a wide variety of greens, including many lettuces which are on the cleaner side as it were, then we can experience great health without any detrimental effects. So give it a try and please let me know your experience, what works for you and also if you’re having challenges and would like some support.
What are Green Leafy Vegetables?
A number of vegetables fit into this category, from salad greens to broccoli. In common, the dark leafy greens share an assortment of nutrients - vitamins A, C, E, and K, folate, iron, and calcium. They are also a great source of fiber, and a source of omega-3 fatty acids.
Types of leafy green vegetables include watercress, arugula, dandelion greens, kale, spinach, collard greens, tatsoi, mustard greens, broccoli raab, bok choy, beet and turnip tops, and swiss chard for starters. Then there are all kinds of fresh micro greens and “herbs” providing great nutritional support as well, i.e. parsley, cilantro, peppermint, rosemary, mizuna, nettles, lambs quarter, purslane, fennel, and many more. Eaten on a regular basis, they have all proven time and time again to have a dramatic impact on health.
Gretchen’s (aka Early Girl) favorite salad
Romaine lettuce (2-3 hearts, or half a large head)
Cucumber (2-3 baby, or half large)
Mango (2-3 ataulfo, or 1-2 larger variety)
Tomato (3-4 medium)
Cilantro (a good handful, or more if you like it)
Cut or tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces, slice cucumber, and put into a large salad bowl. You might want to peel the cucumber if you’re using a larger variety, or if it has wax on the skin. Cut mango into cubes (see below), place in bowl, and do the same with the tomatoes. Finally, chop cilantro and add that. Toss and serve! This is so yummy, and it doesn’t even need any added fat to be delicious. When I first went raw, I ate this salad almost every night. This is what I would eat myself for dinner, but you can also use it to serve several people as a side dish. The proportions are flexible, so feel free to add more or less of something according to your taste. It’s actually really good without the lettuce, as a chopped salad.
Mangoes; there are many varieties of mangoes available during the year at markets where I live (San Francisco Bay Area). My favorite by far is the ataulfo mango, also known as the champagne or manila mango. It’s smaller than other common varieties, and creamier without the stringy texture that many other types have. It’s ready to eat when it’s butter yellow in color, and when the skin just starts to wrinkle. All mangoes imported into the U.S. are heat treated, so raw purists may not want to indulge, but I haven’t noticed any adverse effects.
There are several ways of prepping the flesh of the mango into cubes. One of the easiest is to slice down vertically, as close to the pit as you can. Lay this slice skin-side down and make approximately three parallel cuts through the flesh, almost to the skin beneath. Then turn 90 degrees and make more parallel cuts. Invert the skin so cubes of mango are pointing outward, and slice the flesh away from the skin. Repeat on the other side. Finally, cut the skin off the center section, and carefully cut the flesh away from the pit (or just eat this last part out of hand – yum!)
"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude." ~Maya Angelou, Author and Poet
Stop Cancer with Fruits and Vegetables
Cancers can begin to develop anywhere from 10 to 40 years before they are diagnosed. We know they can be generated by many things, such as chemicals (carcinogens) and radiation exposure, but studies have found that one central event is most closely associated with cancer development — chronic inflammation. This inflammation, which is persistent and prolonged, leads to the generation of free radicals which can lead to cancer.
In one study, researchers looked at a large number of cancer patients and found that almost 70 percent had pre-existing chronic inflammatory diseases for 10 to 17 years before they developed cancer.
Fortunately, a healthy diet filled with nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables — especially vegetables — can help fight inflammation and thus help prevent the development of cancer.
Certain vegetables contain extremely high levels of cancer-preventing substances, while others have very few. Studies have shown that the cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, kale, and cauliflower, provide superior cancer-preventing power.
A number of other vegetables are big hitters, as well. These include turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, cabbage, carrots, and tomatoes.
Of the fruits, the most important are cranberries, currants, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, grapes and apples (especially the McIntosh variety). Try to purchase organic produce when you can as it has more life force and does not contain residues from chemical fertilizers and pesticides….and will not be GMO.
Fluoride has been shown to increase cancer growth and bone cancer risk by 600 percent in young men. Fluoride is found in tooth paste, mouth wash, municipally supplied water, and other personal care and food products.
Not All Supplements Are Created Equal
According to Dr. Joel Robbins, M.D., D.C., N.D., president and founder of the College of Natural Health, there are three types of supplements. Two are man-made, only one is a true food supplement.
• Synthetic vitamins don't come from food. They are manufactured in the lab from non-food sources. While they may be the exact molecular formula of the organic nutrient, they can't be absorbed by the body since they don't have the co-factors required. These supplements can actually deplete your reserves.
• Crystalline vitamins are made by treating natural foods with chemicals, solvents, and heat. These destroy the co-factors (enzymes, antioxidants, trace elements) and can also cause vitamin deficiencies.
• Whole food supplements are whole foods with the water and fiber removed. They are cold processed (below 112 degrees) and, therefore, contain live enzymes the body needs.
The Natural Sourced Vitamin Supplement Deception
Anyone can claim their product is natural if it contains only 10% of the natural source. The problem is that natural source may be corn sugar. Some so-called natural vitamins contain additives, food allergens, sugar, artificial food coloring, flavoring, shellac, chlorine and other harmful chemicals.
How can the average person tell? One way is to drop the vitamin in a glass of water and watch it break down. A natural, soluble vitamin will dissolve within 10-20 minutes. Another sign of chemicals in the supplement is if the urine turns a bright yellow or the vitamin can be smelled in the urine.
I feel it’s best just to stick with whole food supplements from respected companies with a track record of integrity and commitment to excellence. HealthForce is one such company that comes to mind.
The following is great feedback on my B-12 comments from the last newsletter from my friend Dorise who is a Doctor of Natural Medicine in Canada, skilled in the realm of bioenergetics, and the practice of Huna among others. This is her professional title: B.A. (BioPsyc), H.D., D.N.M. and she really knows her stuff.
I mentioned in that article that low B12 levels are just as common amongst meat eaters and this is Dorise’s first comment. (Hugh this may be more so as their gut health may be poorer, B 12 absorption needs a healthy large intestine) I believe many raw fooders have compromised digestive systems as well so a sublingual supplement would probably be best for us as well if supplementation is called for.
Sharing feedback = B12 blood tests are not accurate and can be interpreted differently by health professionals.
According to MD, ND and DNM friend/collogues it is arguably one of the blood test with the least amount of accuracy and relevance.
My last blood test showed my b 12 levels to be in high 900’s, this is well above “normal” range. I was b 12 anemic when I was a teen and have been supplementing, in one form or another, since then. Some MD would say “oh that is too high, stop what you are doing!”. My GP here in BC and my GP in Ontario (who is also a dear friend) both are very happy with my levels.
Another case; I have a colleague and patient, vegan for many years and the NES system kept showing her b 12 levels as out of balance. When testing with my means of assessment we tested out how much b 12 she could take and what form (a sublingual methylcobalamin), dulse and greens (Vitamineral). Her blood level went from low 30 to over 700 in little over a year, we adjusted her level, but her MD almost had a fit when he saw her level were so “ high”! told her to stop. This person is on thyroid meds and needs extra b 6 and b 12 to help metabolize the medication. As soon as she stopped within weeks her energy dropped again to very low levels.
So long and short of this is, check for nail be reperfusion (press and release) and make sure nail comes back pink this works for all races. Gum reperfusion works same way and is a good back up test, yet not to be used alone.
B 12 level need may vary with stress or medication
If individuals are stressed, as can happen in life at different periods such as after a death of a loved one, homocysteine levels rise and we need more b 6, b 12 and folic acid, preferably in food forms. Then when stress levels reduce, homocysteine level reduces and metabolic need reduces. If someone has an underlying congenital defect, organ damage or removal, then sometimes that individual needs to keep up higher levels. Your idea of greens earlier in the day is very important in such cases. It is the biggest challenge I face with people that are used to bread, tea/coffee and cereal breakfasts. Trying to get greens in earlier can be a big step.
Simply wanted to share that B 12 blood test levels alone may not tell an individual much and as you wrote watching for signs and symptoms of deficiency are very important.
The other which I am seeing more often, regardless of sun exposure is low vitamin D levels
If you would like to share one of your favorite original raw food recipes please send one in and we'll post it in the next newsletter. And of the greatest importance, I value your opinion so please feel free to send your comments or questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Be Well and Wonderful, Hugh
The contents of my website and my newsletter are gleaned from my experiences and observations, meant only for educational purposes and not intended to replace medical advice, consultations, or treatment of any kind. I recommend you see your professional health care provider if you suspect you have an illness or disease of any kind. I’m not medically trained, and I would never suggest or imply that I know what is best for someone else’s body or overall health, ultimately each of us is the only one who knows what’s best for us.
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