The Rollercoaster of Life

Grandma: "I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn't like Read more

Sheltering at Home/Covid 19

Never in the last two decades of my career as a physician would I have imagined that we would be using the same mask to see patients all day and then sterilizing/recycling them at the end of the day. Read more

Turmeric Health Benefits

Have you ever wondered what the paste is applied to the bride and groom's faces and arms in Indian weddings?  It's actually the spice turmeric.  Turmeric is the ingredient in curry that gives it a vibrant yellow color.  Actually, Read more

COVID 19 Precautions

With the scare of COVID here in the USA now, I wanted to post a little info about boosting immunity to prevent contracting the virus. Here are some important facts about Covid-19 It is spread by contact with Read more

Natural Tips for Avoiding Colds

This cold and flu season is still upon us and unfortunately, many patients are still being plagued by these nasty viral symptoms.  Here are a few tips to try if you feel like you are coming down with something. Of Read more

Sherry's Story

Sherry has a great story.  She has been diabetic for years and she has made some massive changes!   "I have been on a lifestyle change. It has been a year following a ketogenic food plan.  When I started this journey Read more

Pharmacy to Farmacy

Many of you may know Erin-- the fabulous Pharm D that worked in our office a few years back.  Erin is a phenomenal gal and we embarked on the journey  into natural medicine around the same time.  As we both Read more

When Should I Take My Supplements?

If you are like me -- you are just starting to realize why it is important to add supplements to your diet.  Even if we are eating a clean, healthy and unprocessed diet;  the mineral content of the soil Read more

Body

Nutrition Bars

This post is for all those out there under the misconception that power bars, muscle milk, protein drinks and things disguised as healthy are actually good for you.  I have patient’s tell me all the time that they are eating healthy and when I ask them to actually  write down what they are eating it scares the crap out of me!     Typical patient–no breakfast, slimfast for lunch, and a healthy choice frozen dinner all accompanied with a “diet” cola.  Then they wonder why they aren’t losing weight.  Well, maybe if they were getting one ounce of nutrition out of any of those products, they would be.  It’s not their fault–it’s the physician’s fault!  We aren’t educating them on nutrition.  Most physician’s don’t know jack about nutrition because we aren’t educated on it either.  It’s time to think outside the box and stop drowning patients with pills for diseases they don’t need to have!

Thank you Kevin Deeth for doing your homework and sharing!   A+

Here is his post from his great website http://kevindeeth.wordpress.com/

 The Truth About Nutrition Bars

In a recent study published by consumerlabs.com 30 nutrition bars were broken down/analyzed and over 60% of the bars failed to meet labeling claims! What is really in your “health or nutrition bar”?

Thank you to Rachel for the suggestion on this topic.

Meal replacement bars, snack bars, weight loss bars, energy bars, and protein bars are a convenient and easy way for people to get a quick snack or meal when they are on the go. The problem is that 99% of the products out there are loaded with carbs and sugars that spike insulin levels and promote fat storage. Despite the hidden ingredients and artificial additives, marketing gurus have duped consumers into thinking that these “nutrition bars” are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals when in reality this is far from the truth. The FDA claims that it currently does not have any formal guidelines for nutrition bars or the labeling on nutrition bars.

The Breakdown

“Protein Bar” is an extremely deceptive term.  Most bars contain more carbs than protein. The consumer labs study found that a typical bar is made up of

  • 49% of calories from carbohydrates (mostly from sugars)
  • 29% of calories from protein
  • 22% of calories from fat
What To Stay Away From 
 
Clif Bars
 
 
The concern here is the 45 grams of carbs and 21 grams of sugar (for comparison a snickers bar has 35 grams of carbs and 28 sugars). If you are not an endurance athlete than that amount of carbs in the form of a small snack is way to high. Ever notice how the Clif Bar rapper conveniently covers the ingredient list. Here is why. With over 30 ingredients, it is hard to decipher what exactly the bar is made up of.  Organic rice syrup, evaporated cane juice, organic evaporated can juice, organic date paste, are all fancy names for sugar that make up this so-called “nutrition bar”. While ingredients like evaporated cane juice are not as detrimental to refined sugar, it is close enough.
 
The Take Away– Stay away from Clif bars
 
 
Atkins Advantage Bar
 
 
With Atkins Advantage you get more bang for you buck because the lower carb and sugar levels. You also get a solid 15 grams of protein with only 210 calories. The unfortunate part is the saturated fat and ingredients. With over 50 ingredients, there are several hidden land mines such as glycerin, sucralose, cellulose, artificial flavors, which are all code names for SUGARS!
 
The take away- Eat only if there is no whole/unprocessed foods available like fruit or nuts.
 
 
Nature Valley Bar
 
I commend General Mills for their bold and forthright honesty. They are not trying to hide anything. The second ingredient is SUGAR! With high levels of carbohydrates and sugar, nature valley bars have nothing “natural” about them. High fructose corn syrup and brown sugar syrup are two ingredients that have single handily added to the obesity problems in the US.
 
The take away- Don’t even think about it
 
 
Power Bars
 
This label is also very informative as it provides the disclaimer that the FDA has no regulation over these “health bars”. With 45 carbs,  27 grams of sugar, ingredients such as evaporated cane juice, glucose syrup, and fructose, a power bar is basically a glorified candy bar. At least they have less than 30 ingredients as opposed to some of the other examples listed right?
 
The take away- If you are going to have something with the nutritional equivalent of a candy bar why not actually have a candy bar that tastes great? Opt for a snickers or twix instead.
 
 
Why so much sugar?

In their early development, nutrition bars were bland and primarily eaten by fitness enthusiasts. However, the bars underwent a transformation to appeal to general consumers. The bland, stiff, and protein packed bars didn’t necessarily appeal to the general population. To compensate, manufacturers made their products more flavorful by adding corn syrup, sugar, sugar alcohols, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors, colors and hydrogenated oils, which are all bad for your health.

What To Eat Instead

Kind Bar

Definitely the best nutrition bar out there. The calorie, carbohydrate, protein, and sugar content is a well-balanced mixture that can provide an adequate snack  in between meals. What I love about these bars is the simplicity of the ingredients and the natural additives. Unlike the rest of the bars, you don’t see a list of 30 ingredients with names that are too long to pronounce.

The take away– A good snack that offers a variety from eating nuts or dried fruits by themselves or with trail mix.

Conclusion

As a general guideline, the less ingredients the better. Eating something in its most natural state is always your best bet. The best example I can think of is a product like peanut butter. When buying peanut butter look for one ingredient, PEANUTS! Avoid products with ingredients other than peanuts like what you see in most commercial products.  For example, Jif regular peanut butter’s list of ingredients includes peanuts, salt, sugar, fully hydrogenated vegetable oils, and diglycerides. I never encourage people to eat anything processed like nutrition bars but I understand there or some times when nothing else is available. If that is the case, choose something like a KIND Bar where there are only a few ingredients or prepare ahead and always carry around some nuts and fruits.

Thanks for reading and let me know if you have any comments or questions.

From South Bend,

Kevin

kdeeth21@gmail.com

Posted on by Angela in Body, Call to action, Diet, Exercise, Guest Blog, Nutrition, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Organic Chicken

Dee–after I watched Food INC, something connected in my tiny little brain.  If  Tyson is injecting all their chicken with penicillin, why am I giving it to my daughters that are allergic to penicillin?  If they get hives, vomiting, and diarrhea when they take that antibiotic, why aren’t they getting physically sick from eating that chicken?  Well, they are-by eating very small doses regularly they don’t immediately have a reaction because they are young and healthy.  However, if I keep feeding them that for the next 10 years–they are going to be sick!  They will develop diabetes, heart disease, arthritis or even worse, an autoimmune disease.  That inflammation created at my dinner table is eventually going to make my babies sick!  Ignorance is bliss, until you educate yourself and find out you are poisoning your own kids!

 

Dee tried organic chicken and lived!  Read today’s post—

A few months ago,  I was on my way home from work and had to stop for something for dinner. The grocery is not on my direct route home, but a natural food store is so I stopped to find something. I bought a package of organic chicken that looked disgusting. It was vacuum-sealed so the packaging was wrinkled and the chicken itself was darker than what I usually buy, and smaller. When I cut it up, I noticed that the texture was strange, it was much more tender and didn’t need trimming. I decided to put it in a skillet with no oil and just salt and pepper. Even though the chicken breasts were smaller, they didn’t shrivel up like other chicken. I later learned that it’s because most chickens are plumped with water that cooks off when heated. The taste is like nothing you’ve ever tasted, it’s delicious! I have since taken the time to spread the word to people about the difference in the taste of chicken without hormones or antibiotics. One time (sorry in advance for the insensitive remark) someone rolled their eyes and said, “but it’s so expensive” and I replied “so is chemo.”

Interested in learning why organic chicken matter? Watch Food Inc. through this LINK

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Family, Green Living, Guest Blog, Nutrition, Organic, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

New Favorites!

Thanks Dee–

I used to think my sister-in-law was crazy for raising chickens.  I educated myself on nutrition and realized that what Atticus Finch told Scout in, “To Kill a Mockingbird,”  was a prediction of the future.  He said not to judge a person until you had heard their story.   I now realize that I was ignorant and superficial in those days.    We have to keep ourselves realistic because we are all products of the society  in which we were raised.   We don’t know everything, we know what we are told.  Atticus was right;  As was, Hippocrates when he said , “Let food be the medicine”.  Thank you for this post because we all need to educate ourselves and not judge others–they may just be two steps ahead of us!

Dee writes:

Continuing on with what I can eat, here are some things I’ve not only learned to like, but I actually look forward to eating them.

I used to think people who were vegetarian were strange (no offense) and I thought that veganism was half-crazy. Now, I am deeply remorseful for my hasty judgement. With all I’ve learned about plants as food lately, it seems as though they have had the last laugh.

Falafel with Homemade Tzatziki

First favorite – soy milk in coffee. What a blast of fantastic flavor. I first tried it as a shot of soy in my Starbucks espresso. It was heavenly and I doubt that I’ll drink coffee any other way. Putting dairy milk in my morning coffee was the last bit of regular milk I had failed to give up…milk’s off my list.

Beans, lentils, legumes, peppers, onions! For lunch today, I made falafel with tzatziki. Last weekend, lentil soup. Tonight, my sister’s recipe for Chicken Marbella. Black beans go in my salad, refried beans with salsa are a quick hunger cure, chickpeas in a salad…good all around.

And finally, as a grand gesture apology to all my vegan friends – silken tofu! It is amazing when blended with non-dairy milk and fruit. Check out this recipe from one of my favorite food blogs: Strawberry Mango Fruit Ice.

Remember that protein plays a key role in providing energy and feeling full. The reason we are told to stay away from “the white stuff” like sugar, white pasta, white bread, white rice and potatoes is that these foods are quickly digested, simple carbs made with one or two sugar molecules, they lack fiber and pass quickly into your bloodstream. Complex carbs contain a string of sugar molecules that digest slowly and keep blood sugar stable, full of fiber and filling. Because they are found commonly in whole plant foods they are high in vitamins and minerals.

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, Organic, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

What can you eat?

When you get the blues, it’s often a comforting thing to focus on what you have, not what you lack. There is a saying about a man who pitied himself because he had no shoes until he met the man who had no feet.

There is a similar thing when transitioning to a healthier diet. As a result of watching recent documentaries, I have decided to make a major step toward a plant-based diet. I would rather make a reasonable step that is feasible than a 180-degree change that I will surely fail. Step one for me is to give up beef, pork and milk. I’ve already given up sugar, white flour, white rice, pasta and white bread…almost. I did enjoy a few slices of a semolina Italian last weekend and it was heavenly. When you decrease the amount of meat in your diet, you should be mindful of getting other kinds of protein. Non-dairy milks are a good source of protein, and yogurt and beans/legumes and nuts. Don’t avoid nuts just because they are high in calories, but do watch your portion size with nuts. Beans and legumes are an all around great choice. Today I decided to make a big pot of lentil soup for the week, stepping up the normal amount of carrots and celery for extra vitamins. You should have smelled my house. There are about 150 calories in a cup of the soup and it’s loaded with health benefits. The protein in the lentils makes you feel full. Remember too that color is a simple way to gauge the nutritional value of food. See “All About Color.” For example, in yesterday’s blog picture the color of the lunch from McDonald’s. The only color in it is the bit of lettuce and tomato on the Big Mac, and guess what the only part of that meal that is healthy is? Brown burger, brown bun, brown fries and brown Coke.
Posted on by Angela in Diet, Guest Blog, Nutrition, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Spice up your life!

Besides coffee, I love tea and one of my favorites is chai. Chai has a combination of spices that are a blast to your palette and offer great health benefits. True confession, I got really excited to remember how much I love spice when I made homemade ravioli with spinach, ricotta and nutmeg tonight. At least the nutmeg was good for me….

Cinnamon – cholesterol, diabetes, inflammation, cognition
Nutmeg – digestion, asthma, memory, anxiety, depression
Cardamom – asthma, bronchitis, digestion, circulation
Anise – cold and flu, laxative, diuretic
Cloves – analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidants, ulcers, indigestion
Black Pepper – digestion, nasal congestion, metabolism, respiration
For most people on a normal diet, spices are a win-win food. They add flavor to otherwise bland foods and have a lot more going for them. Check out this interesting article online that addresses the antioxidant power of spices, promoted by McCormick as their seven super spices [article].
Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, Exercise, Guest Blog, Nutrition, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Hell has frozen over and pigs can fly!

No, I don’t have a fever.  Am I still alive?  (Pinch-OUCH-guess so!)  I am so proud of Dee!  She actually listened to me and rented the video!  I had 2 other patients this week that did as well.  It must be a full moon or I’ll have to accept that people may actually be starting to listen to my rants and raves!

Here’s what Dee had to say about the documentary…

When I started this challenge to spend 90-days getting healthy through a better diet and exercise, Dr. Angela mentioned a few documentaries that were very powerful in hammering home the grave consequences of the Western Diet — a diet rich in animal proteins, dairy, refined grains, sugars and processed foods. One of the documentaries, “Forks Over Knives”, has some staggering statistics that demonstrate the global impact of nutrition over the centuries. For example, the average American is 23 pounds overweight with forty-percent falling into the obese category. I myself, at 5 ft. 7 in. and 190 pounds am on the overweight/obese borderline. This year, 460,000 women will die of heart disease and stroke and we are seeing dramatic increases in diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis and prostate cancer. Diabetes and hypertension are becoming diagnosed in children as young as four with one in every four preschoolers reaching obesity. This generation may well be the first generation of children who are outlived by their parents.

The United States spends 2.2 trillion dollars each year in health care, five times the budget for national defense and half of the US population is taking some type of prescription drug. Every minute, a person dies of heart disease….you get the picture. This 90-minute documentary is well-worth your time to watch. It is available on DVD, Netflix online and Hulu Plus.

“Let food by thy medicine.” — Hippocrates

“The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather will cure and prevent disease with nutrition.” — Thomas Edison

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Exercise, Nutrition, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Pink Slime and the 26 Ingredient School Hamburger

A big thanks to Jamie Oliver from The Food Network for finally raising some public attention and encouraging us to be savvy in inspecting the ingredients in the foods we are eating. I have to say that I have been just as ignorant as the rest of the public about what I’m actually putting in my body! Nutrition isn’t taught in medical school. Unfortunately, I have had to go back and relearn everything about healthy eating that I wish I would have learned as a child. I hope these posts are shocking but helpful so that you don’t have to spend hours seeking out the right information.

The Following Foods Contain over 25 ingredients!

Combos, Chocolate Cereals, Cheez Whiz, Frozen Waffles, Snicker’s Peanut Butter, Pringles, Breakfast Bars, Lunchables, and Big Mac Sauce

 

 

 Dear Lunchable,

Sidney and Emma are breaking up with you!    You are taunting them like candy from a rapist van!  Stay away before I really have to go all mama bear postal on you!

Keep your nasty ingredients to yourself!

Cherry Flavored Water Beverage With Other Natural Flavor: Water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, sucralose (Splenda brand sweetener), natural flavor. Cooked Ham–Water Added–Chopped And Formed–Smoke Flavor Added: Ham, water, contains less than 2 percent of sodium lactate, potassium chloride, modified cornstarch, sodium phosphates, sugar, salt, sodium diacetate, sodium ascorbate, flavor, sodium nitrite, smoke flavor. Pasteurized Prepared American Cheese Product: Milk, water, milkfat, milk protein concentrate, whey, whey protein concentrate, contains less than 2 percent of sodium citrate, salt, lactic acid, sorbic acid as a preservative, cheese culture, enzymes, oleoresin paprika (color), annatto (color), with starch added for slice separation. Artificially Flavored Candy: Sugar, invert sugar, corn syrup, modified corn starch, tartaric acid, citric acid, natural and artificial flavoring, yellow 6, red 40, yellow 5 and blue 1. Crackers: Unbleached enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate [vitamin B1], riboflavin [Vitamin B2], folic acid), whole grain wheat flour, soybean oil, sugar, partially hydrogenated cottonseed oil, salt, leavening (baking soda and/or calcium phosphate), whey (from milk), soy lecithin, natural flavor

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, disease, Nutrition, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food 2 Comments

The Reality of the Intrusion of Red Dye #40

Ok–hold on because it’s going to be a bumpy ride!

The following foods contain the infamous Red Dye #40:

Cereals—Kix, Lucky Charms, Reece’s, Trix, Fruit Loops, Fruity Pebbles, and Captain Crunchberries

Yogurts–Dannon, Yoplait, Breyer’s, Colombo, and Trix

Juices and drinks– V8, Hi-C, Minute Maid, Gatorade, Sunkist, Hawaiian Punch, Koolaid, Crystal Light, Pepsi, Ocean Spray , and Lipton iced tea

Sauces and dressings— bullion cubes, BBQ sauce, Catalina dressing

Snacks—Nutragrain bars, Poptarts, Jello pudding, Little Debbie products, granola bars

Cakes and doughs—Pillsbury/Duncan Hines cresent rolls, frosting, pie crusts, cake mix, quick breads

Candy— Brach’s, fruit snacks,Jolly ranchers, Twizzlers, M&M’s, Starburst, Skittles, Lifesavers, Altoids, Smarties, Trident, Tootsie Rolls

ETC ETC ETC—This list is incomplete!  Please visit  http://www.red40.com/  for the complete details. 

Remember:  This small dye changed Susan’s life for the worst ( see post When I let go..)  and eliminating it changed her life back for the better.  Do you believe in miracles?–I do now!

Posted on by Angela in Diet, disease, Green Living, Nutrition, Organic, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Crazy Sexy Cancer

Kris Carr is a vivacious dancer, actress, and filmmaker.  She was born in 1971 (one year before me).  She has appeared in the television series “Law and Order” and has played the ghost of Marilyn Monroe alongside Peter Falk in the film, “Mr Peter’s Connections.”  On Valentine’s Day in 2003–she was diagnosed with stage IV

epithelioid hemangioendothelioma

 which is a rare cancer affecting the liver and lungs.  She chose to live and vowed to do anything it would take to cure herself of this debilitating disease.  Please watch this inspiring video and see what incredible faith and gumption this gal had to overcome her disease and become a survivor!

We Should All Be So Strong!

Posted on by Angela in Body, cancer, Diet, disease, Exercise, Green Living, Nutrition, Organic, vegan, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment

Sweet Tooth!

Thanks Dee!

Unlike a lot of women I meet, I am fortunate in not having a sweet tooth. My husband got the sweet tooth in our family. I can generally walk by a plate of cookies all weekend without much temptation to eat one. I do have another weakness. I’ve been known to eat the crispy-salty chicken skin off of everyone’s chicken before it gets to the table. And I’ve had periods of time where I popped and ate a whole bag of microwave popcorn by myself at night. My sister recommended kosher salt on edamame as a salty substitute. Sometimes it works but sometimes not. Here is one thing I’ve learned about good days and bad days in eating well. If I manage to walk by the cookies and refrain from grabbing a couple of cheese puffs, I can manage to stay strong all day and night. But once I let myself slip a little bit — thinking I’ll just eat one Lay’s potato chip or a quarter of a brownie — I’m a goner. Here’s the good part to that: I can also keep a good thing going once I start my day off with flavorful fruits, fun salads and crunchy veggie combinations. Having other people in my house that have very different eating habits is definitely a huge hurdle to jump. I don’t buy bags of chips or snacks, but my husband does, with dip. He also brings home cakes and pastries and fires up the deep fryer at 10 pm to toss in some Buffalo wings. Dieting is hard enough when you don’t have people around who unintentionally sabotage your best day’s work. I guess that’s life though. Lots of women my age are consumed by diets and weight and appearance. We all want it to be easy and it’s not. Still, I have no doubt that it’s going to be worth all of the hard work. I’m not sticking to the plan as 100% perfectly as I would hope, but I’m moving in the right direction. When tempted, remember to just say no!

http://www.gettingthebestoffood.com/

Posted on by Angela in Body, Diet, Guest Blog, Humor, Nutrition, Weight Loss, Whole Food Leave a comment