Foods versus Foodstuffs #RepealTheSeal

This really boils my potatoes….
Very recently, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) decided a Kraft-made “cheese-like food” is ideal for kids!

I can’t think of a move with less integrity… I’ve been anti-AND ever since I was offered McDonald’s at one of their conferences about 7 years ago… a nutrition conference sponsored by McD’s?? AND is also sponsored by Coca Cola and PepsiCo.

If you feel like signing this petition to #RepealTheSeal, that would be very helpful. But if not, please at least refuse to believe that manufactured cheese-like foods are good for your kids. PLEASE demand logic and integrity from our authoritative agencies, so that kids can learn the difference between foods and “foodstuffs”.

UPDATE (April 1, 2015)

Hooray! AND repealed the inane “Kids Eat Right” initiative with Kraft! According to, AND promises to “engage with the Academy House of Delegates and with all Academy members on future initiatives to promote healthful foods and nutrition in the most professional, ethical and transparent manner possible.” That doesn’t include those of us who decided this was the last straw and will never be a member, but it doesn’t mean we won’t stir up another ruckus if AND dos something else  that smells funny!

I agree with the statement from the RDs who started the petition on, which says: “It takes courage to sit down and listen to criticism and then do something about it. They did just that—and we believe it will ultimately improve our profession, our organization and our public trust.”

Magnesium- do you have enough?

Magnesium is necessary for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body, and some sources say >80% of Americans are deficient. It’s easy to become deficient for 2 reasons:

1) Most soil lacks either magnesium, or the microbes that are responsible for delivering magnesium to plants.

2) Magnesium is burned up by stress… whether stress is good or bad! The Magnesium Burn Rate changes depending on your own personal perception of events.

If you have any of the following symptoms, you might suspect magnesium deficiency: difficulty falling asleep, constipation, muscle cramps, depression/anxiety, heart disease, low energy, bone disease.

Why can’t typical blood tests be trusted? Only 1% of your magnesium is floating in the blood. The rest is stored in your body’s cells and tissues. Either request a “Magnesium RBC” from your doctor, or work with me to do a SpectraCell Nutrient Deficiency test to get an accurate look at your magnesium status, as well as more than a dozen more nutrients!

How to get Magnesium?

  • Food! 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds delivers about 375 grams of magnesium (check out the recipes in the attachment). You can also look to spinach, cocoa (!!!), agar seaweed, chives, dill, sage, basil, parsley, fennel for high levels. In general, all nuts, seeds and veggies will theoretically contain magnesium, but it all depends on the soil.
  • Supplements should be in the form of “magnesium malate” or “magnesium glycinate”. These molecules are small and easy to absorb. Magnesium citrate is best for constipation because its molecules are large and generally stay in the large intestine… that said, many find success with the powdered form of magnesium citrate for sleep.
    • Magnesium L-Threonate is by far the smallest form of magnesium. This means it can pass through the Blood-Brain Barrier and benefit the brain!
    • If you go the supplement route, make sure you choose the right form of the highest quality!

Safe, natural pesticide from mushrooms?

Want a safe, natural pesticide? Paul Stamets, one of my heroes, has invented a “universal biopesticide” which is derived from mushrooms!

Big Ag has called this patent “The most disruptive technology that we have ever witnessed.” (I love it when huge companies that create destructive products whimper and cower under the loom of a natural solution.) 


Highlights of this article on

  • Would eliminate the need for round-up ready GMO seeds.
  • Provides near-permanent, safe solution for over 200,000 species of insects.
  • Extract doesn’t kill insects, just steers them in another direction.
  • If a farmer disperses a solution of pre-sporulation fungi amongst the crops, the insects would simply live their lives around the crops paying no attention to them.
  • Essentially free- can be “cultivated on agricultural waste.”
  • The reason these mushrooms grow to large numbers is because they eat crops, but if they’re not eating the crops, they won’t grow to large and creepy numbers.
  • “The matrix of pre-sporulating fungi can optionally be dried, freeze-dried, cooled and/or pelletized and packaged and reactivated for use as an effective insect attractant and/or biopesticide.”

Medical research fraught with fraud

This is a hugely important read for anyone who’s affected by medical science (i.e. you).

It’s scary to realize the level of unethical behavior in an area as important as medical research… But, hopefully the more people who know, the more likely those involved will clean up their acts! (By the way, this is likely how statin drugs got so high up on their undeserving pedestal.)

Here are some bullet pointed highlights of this article from for your skimming pleasure:

POINT #1: Research misconduct and fraud is often not reported

  • One of the FDA’s roles in the drug approval process is to inspect clinical trial sites to determine whether these sites are complying with FDA regulations.
  • Siefe and his assistants used the Freedom of Information Act to request information from the FDA, and supplemented that data with Google searches of the FDA database. They found 57 clinical trials that were directly linked to an OAI inspection. (OAI = Official action indicated; the most severe violation)
  • 96 percent of these articles failed to mention the violations identified by the FDA inspection—despite the fact that in the majority of cases the inspection was completed at least 6 months before the article was published.
  • Ex. Researcher falsified lab test results to hide a patient’s impaired kidney and liver function in a trial comparing two chemotherapy regimens. The first dose of the regimen proved to be fatal to this patient, and the researcher was sentenced to 71 months in prison. Despite this episode being described in both FDA and court documents, not one of the studies in the peer-reviewed literature associated with the chemotherapy trial have any mention of the falsification, fraud, or homicide.
  • Ex. Large trial of apixaban (anti-clotting drug) in China: FDA determined patient records were altered and data falsified in order to prove that this drug saved lives. None of this discussion appears in the scientific literature. Studies since 2011 have consistently relied on the full data set (including the fraudulent data from the China trial site), and this was even true for an article published nearly 18 months after the fraud was discovered.
  • How is this possible? FDA does not notify journals when a site participating in a clinical trial receives an OAI inspection, nor does it typically make any announcement which would alert the media and general public to the issues it identified. They do this to protect the identity of the drug company involved in the trial( = “confidential commercial information”).

POINT #2: Conflicts of interest in academic research are rarely disclosed

  • It is well established that two-thirds of medical research is sponsored by drug companies, and industry-sponsored trials are more likely to report favorable results for drugs because of biased reporting, biased interpretation, or both.
  • A couple quotes to keep in mind: “It’s difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary is dependent upon him not understanding it.” (Upton Sinclair), and “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.”
  • Very few universities make required reports to the government about the financial conflicts of interest of their researchers—and even when they are reported, the universities rarely require those researchers to eliminate or reduce these conflicts.
  • 90 percent of universities relied solely on the researchers themselves to decide whether to report their potential conflicts of interest, and half of universities don’t even ask their faculty to disclose the amount of money or stock they make from drug or device makers.
  • 8 out of the 9 doctors on the panel that creates the official blood cholesterol target values for the U.S. had direct ties to statin drug manufacturers (there’s a link to the specific names in the article). (Sales of statin drugs reach $30 billion a year.)
  • Another related problem is the “revolving door” between public agencies like the CDC and FDA or institutions like the U.S. Congress, and pharmaceutical companies. Ex. Over half of the lobbyists employed by the pharmaceutical industry in 2008 had worked in Congress or another branch of the federal government, and 35 had been former members of Congress.
  • There are certainly some honest, unbiased, objective people out there, but financial interests of researchers are positively associated with outcomes favorable to the sponsor in medical studies, and research institutions can be influenced by industry sponsorships such as grants, endowed chairs, and other gifts.
  • “…science is a human endeavor, and like all human endeavors, it is subject to the vagaries of human ethics and behavior.”

Spooky Supplement News

Here’s something spooky for Friday the 13th:

An investigation by the New York State attorney general’s office into store-brand supplements at four national retailers — GNC, Target, Walgreens and Wal-Mart — found that only 21% actually contained the herbs listed on the labels.

This study was done on herbs, but I imagine vitamins and minerals are also “mystery bottles”. Contact me for high-quality nutrition supplements!!

“Additionally, five of the 24 contained wheat and two contained beans without identifying them on the labels — both substances are known to cause allergic reactions in some people.”

Walmart was the worst offender.

More info in this Washington Post article.

Cholesterol Vindicated!

…Well, they got it HALF right.

“The nation’s top nutrition advisory panel has decided to drop its caution about eating cholesterol-laden food, a move that could undo almost 40 years of government warnings about its consumption.”


  • They still blame saturated fat, which is complete BULLOCKS.
  • “The greater danger in this regard, these experts believe, lies not in products such as eggs, shrimp or lobster, which are high in cholesterol, but in too many servings of foods heavy with saturated fats, such as fatty meats, whole milk, and butter.” I repeat: bullocks.


  • “Almost every single nutrient imaginable has peer reviewed publications associating it with almost any outcome,” John P.A. Ioannidis, a professor of medicine and statistics at Stanford and one of the harshest critics of nutritional science, has written. “In this literature of epidemic proportions, how many results are correct?”

Breakfast = reward

New research shows that eating a good breakfast — particularly one rich in protein — boosts a critical neurotransmitter, which may lower food cravings later in the day.

When you eat, a burst of dopamine is initiated, which gives you the feelings of reward.

“Dopamine levels are blunted in individuals who are overweight or obese, which means that it takes much more stimulation — or food — to elicit feelings of reward; we saw similar responses within breakfast-skippers.

To counteract the tendencies to overeat and to prevent weight gain that occurs as a result of overeating, we tried to identify dietary behaviors that provide these feelings of reward while reducing cravings for high-fat foods.

Eating breakfast, particularly a breakfast high in protein, seems to do that.”

More info in this PsyBlog article.

Could depression be an allergic reaction to inflammation?

free NA brain inflammation depression mental - VSRao on pixabayIf depression is caused by inflammation, then it’s not strictly a Prozac deficiency (pharmaceuticals are indeed the answer for some people, but not for all.) With or without a prescription, seeking out the root cause of depression is the ideal ultimate goal.

The following are excerpts from this article from

  • “People suffering from depression are loaded with cytokines”, which are biochemicals produced during inflammation.”
  • “Cytokines skyrocket during depressive episodes and, in those with bipolar disorder, halt in remission. The fact that ‘normal,’ healthy people can become temporarily anxious or depressed after receiving an inflammatory vaccine — like typhoid — lends further credence to the theory. There are even those who think we should re-brand depression altogether as an infectious disease”
  • “Inflammation can be caused by many things. Nutrition-wise, they include: Inflammation is caused by gut infections, imbalanced gut flora, obesity, high sugar diets, high quantities of trans fats, any chronic health condition (diabetes, heart disease, etc) and a nutrient deficiency.”**If this piques your interest, you might want to check out SpectraCell’s Nutrient Deficiency blood test. Nutrient deficiencies can block any of your attempts to heal.

Image by VSRao @

The future of psychiatry may be in your guts

bacteria-811861_960_720Did you know that out of every 10 of the cells in your body, only ONE is human!? The rest are bacterial!

Yep. That’s right. We’re not completely human. And thank goodness! We’ve delegated a lot of tasks to our microbe inhabitants: vitamin creation, food digestion, immune system regulation and, quite fascinatingly, mental health management. Depression and anxiety are conditions that can be affected by our bacterial flora.

If your body is like a walking Bed and Breakfast for microbes, a few easy strategies would make you a better host! Stop feeding “bad bugs” with as many refined carbs (sugars and flours), enjoy some sauerkraut with each meal (great selection at The Store, run by Nu-Beginning Farm) and toss a high-quality probiotic down your gullet once or twice a day. It could make a huge difference inside and out!

These excerpts are taken from this article from

  • For decades, researchers have known of the connection between the brain and the gut. Anxiety often causes nausea and diarrhea, and depression can change appetite. The connection may have been established, but scientists thought communication was one way: it traveled from the brain to the gut, and not the other way around. This communication process is more like a multi-lane superhighway than a one-way street.
  • “The gut is really your second brain. There are more neurons in the GI tract than anywhere else except the brain.” -James Greenblatt, Boston-area psychiatrist.
  • One 2011 study out of McMaster University compared the behaviors of normal eight-week-old mice and mice whose guts were stripped of microbes. Bacteria-free mice exhibited higher levels of risk-taking, and neurochemical analysis revealed higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol and altered levels of the brain chemical BDNF, which has been implicated in human anxiety and depression.
      “This work showed us that anxiety was normal, and that the gut-brain axis was involved in that,” Jane Foster, the study’s lead author, said. “Everybody knew that stress and anxiety could lead to gastrointestinal symptoms, but we looked at it from the bottom up and showed that the gut could communicate with the brain. It was the first demonstration that the gut itself could influence brain development.”

Image by skeeze @

Skip the skim milk and go full fat

Do you still choose skim milk, which is usually powdered milk + water? How about low-fat dairy products, which have gums and fillers in them to simulate fat?

Haven’t you heard that full-fat dairy is better for so many reasons!! (By the way, lactose intolerance could be caused by gluten sensitivity!) In addition to the reasons below, fat is satiating. When the brain gets something that it thinks contains fat, it prepares for it. But when that fat isn’t there, all the digestion machinery that’s all set and ready doesn’t just fade away. It triggers some mad cravings! (Same logic applies to artificial sweeteners, when the body preps to digest actual sugar.)

Although we’ve been brainwashed for decades to believe that dairy fat is harmful, recent research overwhelmingly suggests the opposite. Consider the following excerpts taken from this article on

  • A meta-analysis of 16 studies (which our friend and colleague Dr. Stephan Guyenet was a co-author on) found that full-fat dairy was either inversely associated with obesity and metabolic disease, or not associated with them at all. In other words, people who ate the most high-fat dairy foods had the lowest risk for obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
  • Higher circulating levels of trans-palmitoleic acid (a fatty acid found in dairy fat) are associated with healthier levels of blood cholesterol, inflammatory markers, insulin levels, and insulin sensitivity, after adjustment for other risk factors. In one study, people with the highest levels of trans-palmitoleic acid in their blood had a 60% lower risk of developing diabetes than those with the lowest levels.
    • Another study showed that people who ate the most full-fat dairy had a 69% lower risk of cardiovascular death than those who ate the least.
  • A study at the Harvard School of Public Health found that women who ate two or more servings of low-fat dairy foods per day, particularly skim milk and yogurt, increased their risk of infertility by more than 85 percent compared with women who ate less than one serving of low-fat dairy food per week.
  • All of these studies were observational in nature, so they don’t prove that full-fat dairy is responsible for all of the effects mentioned. But they certainly make it difficult to argue that full-fat dairy is harmful and contributes to obesity, diabetes and heart disease, and if anything, they suggest the opposite is true.

The fat in full-fat dairy may prevent disease

Compounds in high-fat dairy products—such as butyrate, phytanic acid, trans palmitoleic acid, and conjugated linoleic acid— have been shown to have beneficial effects on the humanoid body.

  • Butyrate provides energy to the cells lining the colon, inhibits inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract, and may prevent colonic bacteria from entering the bloodstream. In fact, butyrate’s anti-inflammatory effect is so strong that a dose of four grams per day for eight weeks induced complete remission in a group of Crohn’s disease patients.
  • Phytanic acid, one of the fatty acids in dairy fat, has been shown to reduce triglycerides, improve insulin sensitivity, and improve blood-sugar regulation in animal models. In a study of 2,600 U.S. adults, another fatty acid in dairy fat, trans palmitoleic acid, was found to be associated with lower triglycerides, lower fasting insulin, lower blood pressure, and a lower risk of diabetes.
  • Conjugated linolenic acid (CLA), a natural trans fat found in dairy products, may reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
  • Dairy fat is also a good source of fat-soluble vitamins like retinol (active vitamin A) and vitamin K2, which are difficult to obtain elsewhere in the diet.