I hope you didn’t lose any sleep over the no-show of an Orchards Nutrition January Newsletter! HaHa. It’s taken me a while to get my ducks in a row after a hectic and wonderful festive season. We had a somewhat extended “relo bash” of note with 33 of us around the Christmas dinner table. It was WUNDERBAR!
However you will no doubt relate to the fact that having all the family home requires a lot of effort and planning when it comes to meals. But, thanks to the inventor of smoothies, our breakfasts everyday were sorted! All I had to do was make sure the ingredients were available and everyone was happy to put there own smoothie together in their own time. (Yip, I too have one of those adorable youngsters who crawls out of the feathers mid-morning).
Luckily blueberries were in season (and still are, so stock up your deepfreeze) and as such, a handful of these powerhouses of anti-oxidant vitamins and minerals was non-negotiable, as were apples (remember an apple a day may lower cholesterol and “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” is not just a saying). And then a choice of whatever other fruit was available such as pears, bananas, mangoes, paw-paws or strawberries went into the mix. It’s essential to add a good dose of protein to a smoothie to make it more satiating by balancing blood sugar levels. For this we used 3 tablespoons plain full-fat yoghurt and 10 almonds or pecan nuts per smoothie, both of which go a long way to addressing your daily calcium needs too. For good measure we added a scoop of Green Vibrance powder and some Just Carrots powder. Honey and stevia were there for sweetening if desired and water and ice to chill and blend.
Of course you can do your own thing with a smoothie but what is really astounding is how a tall glass of smoothie can sustain you right up until lunchtime. Some like to add oats flakes to theirs and this is great for added fibre, however do remember that, unless soaked for a few hours or cooked, oats holds onto its minerals so you may not get all the nutritional value of oats if you add dry flakes to your smoothie.
Is yoghurt a good breakfast option?
Well yoghurt is a dairy product and how often are we told that dairy may be problematic to one’s health. But the arguments don’t really apply to yoghurt and we’re talking full-fat plain yoghurt here, thereby dispelling the myth that dairy products are to be avoided on account of their offering of saturated fat.
Firstly, believe it or not, there are practically no links between saturated fat and heart disease and eating less saturated fat has not been shown to have broad benefits for health. Secondly, fatty foods are not fattening. A recent study reviewed the studies in which dairy products were emphasised in the diet and measures of body composition assessed. Overall, the results found that, if anything, the inclusion of dairy products led to a reduction in fat mass, increase in lean body mass (muscle) and reduced waist circumference. Gosh what more do we want?
It has been suggested that the beneficial effects on body weight relates to the calcium content of dairy products. Paradoxically, the consumption of calcium has been shown to lower calcium level within fat cells, and this accelerates the process of lipolysis or the breakdown of fat. There is considerable evidence linking higher intakes of calcium and dairy products with reduced body fatness. In one of these studies, the group supplementing with yoghurt saw their waist circumferences shrink by an average of about 4.0 cm, compared to a reduction of only about 0.5 cm in individuals supplementing with calcium alone.
Yes, it is generally agreed that dairy products are a common cause of ‘food intolerance’ issues and I go along with that. However I blame Monsieur Pasteur for this! Raw dairy products, if you can lay your hands on them, are better tolerated than pasteurised, and yoghurt is better tolerated than milk. This probably has to do with the fact that the bacteria (good guys) in yoghurt, partially digest milk proteins making them easier for us to digest and therefore less problematic. An added benefit of yoghurt is that it contains less lactose than milk, so is generally better tolerated by individuals who are lactose intolerant. If you want to do the yoghurt thing as well as supplement with more calcium, make sure you use a plant-derived calcium supplement such as Natural Vibrance’s Super Natural Calcium which comes in powder as well as tablet form. Avoid the cheap and nasty calcium carbonate type supplements that can do more harm than good.
Calcium supplementation increases fat loss in obese and overweight young adults
Here is more evidence that calcium assists weight loss. In a trial conducted in China the researchers used overweight and obese college students (I bet they were living on MacDonalds fast foods) whose diet provided less than 600mg/day of calcium per day. Both groups were put on the same weight-loss diet however one group received 600mg of calcium and 125IU of Vitamin D3 daily while the other group received no supplements. Body fat mass, fat percentage, lean mass, visceral fat mass and visceral fat area were assessed at the beginning of the study and at four week intervals until the end of the treatment period.
After 12 weeks, although the amount of weight lost by both groups was similar, a significantly greater reduction in fat mass loss and fat percentage occurred in the participants that received calcium in comparison with unsupplemented subjects. Men and women who received calcium and vitamin D experienced a 55.6 percent greater decrease in fat mass loss than the control subjects, and had a greater reduction in visceral fat mass and fat area.
It would be interesting to see the same trial done without the vitamin D, just the calcium, however from now on my wannabe-thin patients will be encouraged to supplement both because vitamin D3 has so many other health benefits anyway.
Heartburn and stomach acid
We have been led to believe that all heartburn is due to excess stomach acid. This is a dangerous assumption because insufficient stomach acid can produce the same symptoms of heartburn and taking antacids to try and neutralise the little acid you have spells trouble. How can you find out whether you have an excess or low stomach acid? Next time you have heartburn take a teaspoon of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. If your symptoms disappear you have low stomach acid and you need to take action. The Helicobacter pylori bacteria, said to be responsible for ulcers and implicated in stomach cancer, can proliferate in a low stomach acid environment. Furthermore food may not be digested well enough leading to other health problems due to vitamin and mineral deficiencies or a leaky gut. Vitamin B12, especially, may not be absorbed. Also the stomach’s hydrochloric acid is needed to destroy ingested bacteria and microorganisms.
If you discover you have low stomach acid your body needs assistance. You can take a hydrochloric acid supplement to supply the body with what it requires however helping your body to produce more stomach acid would be preferable. That is why I’m excited about a new supplement that Xymogen has brought in called GastrAcid. Apart from Glutamic Acid HCl and Betaine HCl necessary for a well functioning digestive system and the adequate absorption of protein, calcium, vitamin B12 and iron, it also contains gentian root which stimulates your body to produce more HCl.
Aspartame linked to cancer in humans - not just rats!
Back in 2005 researchers reported a statistically significant increase in the incidence of malignant tumours, lymphomas and leukemias in rats exposed to long term doses of aspartame that equate to what would be regarded as acceptable in humans, ie doses as low as 20mg per kg of body weight. However this study was largely ignored and the acceptable daily intake for humans was set at 40-50mg/kg.
Now in a new report, and one of the largest and most thorough of its kind, these early results seem to be confirmed. It looked at the association between diet-soda consumption and risk of cancer of the lymph system (non-Hodgkin lymphoma), leukaemia and another form of blood cancer known as multiple myeloma, in adults over a 22-year period.
In short, the new study showed that just one daily 12-fl oz. can (355 ml) of diet soda containing aspartame leads to: - a 42 percent higher leukaemia risk in men and women - a 102 percent higher multiple myeloma risk (in men only) - a 31 percent higher non-Hodgkin lymphoma risk (in men only)
So how is it possible that aspartame could cause cancer? Well, one constituent of aspartame is methanol (‘wood alcohol’ ) which in the body can be converted into formaldehyde, which is what’s used to preserve dead bodies but it’s also a known cancer-causing agent. There’s an enzyme known as ‘alcohol dehydrogenase type 1’ which speeds the conversion of methanol into carcinogenic formaldehyde. Alcohol dehydrogenase type 1 activity tends to be higher in men than in women which may be the reason why increased risk of cancer was seen in men and not women. Alcohol consumption inhibits this enzyme, and it’s interesting to note that in the most recent study the men at most risk appeared to be those who drank the least alcohol. Interesting indeed but no reason to start adding brandy to your diet Coke! Aspartame is toxic and should be banned!
You’ve heard that it takes 21 days to create a habit. I urge you to put this into practice in the following way: In a journal, every day for 21 days write down even the smallest things for which you are grateful. You will be amazed how, within just a few days, you will be feeling much more positive and your whole outlook and the way you react to life’s challenges has changed. Give it a try! "The Earth is beautiful. If you start living its beauty, enjoying its joys with no guilt in your heart, you are in paradise. If you condemn everything, every small joy, then the same Earth turns into a hell. It is a question of your own inner transformation. It is not a change of place, it is a change of inner space. Livejoyously, guiltlessly, live totally, live intensely. And then heaven is no more a metaphysical concept, it is your own experience." ~Osho
Naturally Nutritious Wholefood Cookbook
Needless to say this great book flew out of here before Christmas and made wonderful Christmas presents for some lucky recipients. Now it's time to treat yourself. See the attached description so you know what you are missing out on.
Speaking of food here are some corny vegetarian jokes:
I think going vegetarian is a huge “missed steak” Get it??? Hehe.
This girl said she met me at the vegetarian club but I’ve never met herbivore.
Within hours of the news that Tesco's all beef burgers contain 30% horse meat hundreds of quips hit the internet of course, such as:
"I'm so hungry I could eat a horse!"... I guess Tesco just listened.
I must say these Tesco burger jokes are going on a bit ...hehe. Talk about flogging a dead....aaaarrrrggghh. NO NO NO!!! Enough!
Ok, Ok, I know, my standards are dropping by the second and I need to call it a day. So let me end off by wishing you a great year ahead where good health prevails in you and your family and many happy memories are made.
PS: Product list attached reflects new prices and some new products so this is the one to follow.
Nutritional Therapist (BSc (Hons) HDE, Dip Clin Nutr) The Orchards Nutrition Centre - Somerset East Tel: 042 243 0339 Cell: 084 531 0786 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org