Digestion

More Healthy Holiday Recipes!

Cranberry Walnut Bread

60 minutes prep time  |  Makes 2 loaves

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bread-cranberry-251-resized-600

a little indulgence for the holidaysMakes: 12 servings

3 cups cranberries three fourths cup chopped walnuts, toasted 2 cups unbleached flour 1 and one half cups whole wheat pastry flour 1 and one half tsp. baking powder 1 tsp. baking soda one half tsp. sea salt one quarter cup grapeseed oil three quarters cup date sugar 2 eggs 1 cup orange juice 1 tsp. orange zest

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly oil and flour 2 loaf pans. In a bowl, sift together the unbleached flour, whole wheat pastry flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt. In another bowl mix the grapeseed oil, date sugar, eggs, orange juice, and orange zest. Gently combine flour mixture and batter. Fold in walnuts and cranberries. Pour the batter into loaf pans and bake for 40 – 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from pans and let cool

Double Ginger Dessert

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dessert-297049-resized-600

20 minutes prep time | Makes 4 servings

a light dessert with one of my favorite healing spices

Makes: 4 servings

5 cups Vanilla Rice Dream frozen dessert one foruth cup diced crystallized ginger three fourths tsp. cardamom one half tsp. cinnamon ginger ale

Slightly soften the Vanilla Rice Dream by letting it stand at room temperature about 10 minutes. Scoop into a large bowl. Add crystallized ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon; swirl ingredients together. Place bowl in freezer until dessert is firm enough to scoop… about 1 and one half hours; if storing up to 1 week, cover air-tight. Divide into 4 large water goblets. Slowly fill glasses with icy ginger ale, and serve immediately.

The Blood Type Diet: Is It Right for You?

Followers often say it is the only thing that worked for them, but is there any real evidence that the Blood Type diet is any better than other fad diets out there?

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weightbrunch-resized-600

Here is the theory: each blood type has a different set of characteristics. Different foods, even different exercise regimens are appropriate based on your blood type. Even your personality is thought to be affected by blood type.

According to Peter D’Adamo, the author of Eat Right For Your Type, lectins in foods react differently to each blood type. Your specific blood type antigens may be incompatible with certain foods. His theory is based largely on the evolutionary theory of blood types by William Boyd, an immuno-chemist and anthropologist.

D’Adamo believes blood type O is the earliest blood group originating 30,000 years ago. He suggests type O’s are “the hunter” and do well on a high protein diet with more meat. They are prone to thyroid issues, benefit from adding bladderwrack (an easily gathered shoreline seaweed) in the diet, and supplementing with DGL (deglycyrrhizinated licorice) to counteract excess body acid production. According to the diet, “hunters” should avoid wheat, dairy, caffeine and alcohol.

Blood type A is considered “the cultivator” dating back 20,000 years ago. D’Adamo recommends a plant based diet with whole grains and vegetables comprising the majority of the diet. They do best with organic foods, a low stress lifestyle, plenty of rest and moderate exercise like tai chi.  It is suggested they avoid excess protein from meat and fat in the diet, and limit sugar, caffeine and alcohol. Note: the coauthor for this book followed the blood type diet for A’s and found it helpful.  For people who want to try it, transition into your correct blood type diet slowly over a period of weeks so as to not shock your system.

Blood type B is thought to be “the nomadic” blood type arriving 10,000 years ago with a more flexible digestive system and better immune system. They adapt well to different environments and altitude changes. They perform best with mentally challenging exercise like martial arts, hiking or golf. According to this diet, type B’s should avoid chicken because it contains an aggravating lectin that could lead to higher risk for stroke and autoimmune disease. Further, B’s are the only type that does well with dairy products.

Blood type AB, found in less than 5% of the population, is the most recently evolved type, arriving less than 1,000 years ago. It is the only blood type created by the intermingling of different blood types rather than by the environment. Type AB’s do well with a diet comprising the best elements of both diets for A and B. They should avoid smoked or cured meats, caffeine, alcohol and high stress. Instead, they should focus on fermented soy foods, seafood, and green vegetables.

What Do The Experts Say?

There is little scientific evidence that any of the Eat Right For Your Type dietary recommendations work for disease prevention. In fact, some studies suggest that lectins, which are specific for a particular ABO blood type aren’t even found in foods, other than a few exceptions like lima beans. Lectins which react differently to blood types are found more often in non-food plants or animals. Still, D’Adamo suggests that his diet is more about the foods you do eat versus what you avoid.

There are a few disease risks linked to blood type. Gastritis is somewhat more prevalent in type A’s and O’s (which incidentally make up about 80% of the world’s population). Anemia and diabetes are more prevalent in type A’s or B’s. A 2009 study suggests pancreatic cancer may be more common in type A and B’s. Research shows disease-carrying insects seem to prefer Type O blood.

I believe in a plant based diet for everyone, not just type A’s for overall health. See the diets on this website and in my book Diets for Healthy Healing.

What Do The Followers Say?

The Blood Type diet has a strong community of support. An internet survey with over 6500 respondents (conducted by D’Adamo’s website) reports that people following the Blood Type Diet for a month or more in a variety of health concerns, had improvement in 71-78% of cases. Most commonly, respondents reported weight loss. Note: Since each blood type diet eliminates specific problem groups of foods, like grains, dairy, meat and fish, the weight loss result is not surprising.

D’Adamo’s newest work is titled The Genotype Diet and expands upon his blood type diet theory to include more information on identifying your personal genotype and how it reacts with your environment to either create health or disease.

Learn a lot more about the blood type diet on www.4yourtype.com.

Brown Rice Cleanse

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brownrice-resized-600

A brown rice cleanse is especially useful for dropping a few quick pounds, and it’s a great way to transition from an unhealthy diet into a better diet. A brown rice cleanse is based on macrobiotic principles for body balance. It’s cleansing, yet filling. You don’t feel like you’re on a cleanse at all, yet it does the trick. It’s a diet that uses rice as a nutrient building food, and vegetables and vegetable juices as concentrated cleansing supplements. A brown rice cleanse is high in potassium, natural iodine, and other minerals, so most people notice improvement in their hair, skin texture and nail growth A brown rice diet is the best cleansing diet for colder times of the year. Brown rice adds a building, warming factor to a cleanse, making your meals more satisfying, ensuring that you get plenty of fiber and minerals. It’s an effective option to a juice cleanse and much easier to fit into your lifestyle.

Almost everybody loses some weight during this cleanse. Many people experience a 2 to 5 pound weight drop. Most people notice an improvement in vitality and energy levels right away, too. People with heart problems regularly notice a more stable heartbeat and better circulation. A fiber-rich cleansing diet with sea veggies, that eliminates meat and dairy protein, almost invariably lowers the risk of cardiovascular problems.

Is your body showing signs that a brown rice cleanse would help you?

—Is your immune response low?

—Do you feel like you need to clear cobwebs from your brain? Are you feeling logy and out-of-sorts?

—Do you need to lose about 10 pounds?

7-Day Brown Rice Detox Plan

The night before your brown rice cleanse....

A green leafy salad for dinner sweeps your bowels.

The next day....

—On rising: take a glass of 2 fresh squeezed lemons, 1 tbsp. maple syrup and 8-oz. of pure water.

—Breakfast: have an energy green drink: 6 carrots, 1 beet, 8 spinach leaves and ¼ cup fresh parsley.

—Mid-morning: take a cup Cleansing & Purifying tea or burdock tea.

—Lunch: have a veggie juice like Super V-7: 2 carrots, 2 tomatoes, a handful of spinach leaves and parsley, 2 celery ribs, ½ cucumber, ½ green bell pepper. Add 1 tbsp. green superfood, like spirulina or chlorella.

—Mid-afternoon: have a glass of carrot juice.

—Dinner: have steamed brown rice and mixed steamed vegetables. Sprinkle with sea veggies like dulse or kelp, easily purchased in flakes or granules. Use 1 tbsp. flax or olive oil, and 1 tbsp. Bragg’s Liquid Aminos.

—Before Bed: have a cup of herbal tea such as peppermint, spearmint or chamomile.

—The next 6 days: have 2 to 3 glasses of mixed vegetable juices throughout the day. Don’t eat any solid food during the day. Have steamed brown rice and mixed vegetables for an early dinner each evening.

.7-day brown rice cleanse supplement suggestions: Choose 2 or 3 cleansing boosters.

…Cleansing boosters: Herbal laxatives like cascara sagrada and senna support waste elimination.

…Cleansing teas: Green Tea Cleanser or Cleansing & Purifying tea, both gentle enough to take on a daily basis.

…Enzymes, a detox’s best friend: Dr. Enzyme with Protease & Bromelain.

Using Detoxification Therapies to Relieve GERD

GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) is the major cause of today’s heartburn epidemic. GERD results from stomach acid leaking back into the esophagus and coming up (refluxing) into the throat. GERD also occurs in severe cases of osteoporosis, when the rib cage and upper body collapse to the point where normal food transit is impeded. (My own mother suffered from this; it was extremely painful.) People who suffer from acid reflux are far more likely to develop cancer of the esophagus, now the fastest growing type of cancer in the western world. What puts you at risk for GERD or chronic heartburn? Overeating, enzyme deficiency, too much fast foods and fried foods (all acid-forming), prescription drug side effects, having a hiatal hernia or severe osteoporosis can all lead to GERD.

Signs you may have GERD:

– Chronic heartburn, chest pains and bloating after eating

– Belching, hiccups and regurgitation after eating

– Difficulty swallowing and a full feeling at the base of the throat

– Chronic hoarseness

Detox diet for chronic heartburn or GERD:

Healthy detoxification therapies ease chronic heartburn or GERD, naturally. A healthy detox diet eliminates acid-forming foods and alkalizes the system for fast heartburn relief. You can boost your benefits by continuing with fresh juices, enzyme rich foods and whole herbs long after your cleanse is over.

Start with this sample cleansing diet:

Cleanse the digestive system and establish good enzymes. Follow a detox mono diet of just apples and apple juice for 2 days. For the next 4 days, consume 70 % fresh foods diet (fresh fruits and vegetables, mixed green salads) and brown rice for extra B vitamins.

Continue your cleanse benefits with a largely vegetarian diet. Drink healthy juices for stomach acid balance at least once daily. Choose from: barley grass or spirulina green drinks for chlorophyll; carrot/cabbage juice, a stomach healer; pineapple-papaya juice for extra enzymes; or aloe vera juice, an esophageal soother before meals.

Add cultured foods like yogurt, kefir and miso soup to the ongoing diet for balancing friendly flora. Add lightly steamed vegetables, and enzyme-rich foods like papaya and pineapple.  Other alkaline-forming foods to include regularly: mineral water, seaweeds, herb teas, brown rice, honey, and most fruits. (Note: Melons often aggravate reflux.)

For long term GERD prevention, eliminate fried food and spicy foods—they slow the rate at which your stomach empties, allowing food to travel back to the esophagus. Avoid refined carbohydrates and sugary foods—they boost gastric acidity.

Further, skip red meats, high fat dairy foods, sodas, hard alcohol and caffeine (especially coffee). Switch to herbal teas, like a green and white tea blend with ginger for better digestion.

Quick Tips:

•If 1 tsp. cider vinegar in water relieves your heartburn, you may need more stomach acid.

•If you have flatulence, a catnip or slippery elm enema often provides immediate relief.

• Good digestive teas to include: peppermint, spearmint, ginger, dill, and caraway ease digestion. Try wild yam tea, especially if you have eaten too much refined sugar.

• Try to eat when relaxed. Eat smaller meals. Chew food very well. Don’t take liquids with meals. Don’t lie down after eating. It definitely aggravates reflux problems.

• Consider herbs for GERD relief and healing. Herbs are especially helpful after heavy meals, and for an overeater’s weight control program.

You don’t have to suffer needlessly from chronic heartburn or GERD. Natural therapies are an excellent option, alkalizing the system, soothing discomfort and helping to support tissues.  Most people feel better right away!

To Life-long health,

Linda Page

Linda Page Ph.D., Traditional Naturopath is the author of the bestselling book, Healthy Healing- A Guide to Self-Healing for Everyone. Her newest ebook release is Healthy Healing’s Detoxification- Programs to Cleanse, Purify and Renew.

References

Roth, J.Scott, M.D. “Hidden Hernia. Bottom Line Health, April 2008

“A Healthy Diet Saves Your Throat,” Alternatives, March 2008 (Am J Epidemiol 08;Jan 23 E-pub ahead of print)

Dowdle, Hillari, “Fire Fighters,” Natural Health, Nov. 2006

Faloon, William, “The Hidden Cancer Epidemic,” Life Extension, Feb. 2003

Diet to Soothe Irritable Bowel

Irritable Bowel Syndrome affects as many as one in five U.S. adults! A chronically inflamed, painful colon is a result of food allergies in 65% of cases. It’s usually a reaction to gluten, wheat, dairy, corn, eggs, or other food item. Fast foods, fried foods, processed foods and sugars all aggravate irritable bowel. Most people with IBS are women between 20 and 40 with stressful  lifestyles. New research shows that 78% of people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome have overgrowth of abnormal bacteria in the small intestine, often the result of too many antibiotics. Colon membranes become irritated, and the body forms pouchy pockets in reaction. In severe cases (ulcerative colitis), ulcerous lesions line the sides of the colon.

10-Day Diet to relieve irritable bowel

During acute stage of irritable bowel pain:

Go on a mono diet for 2 days with just apples and apple juice to gently cleanse the colon.

For the next 8 days:

Have 2 – 3 glasses of mixed vegetable juices throughout the day. (Wheatgrass juice is a specific for colitis.) Have steamed brown and mixed vegetables for an early dinner each evening. Drink at least 6 – 8 glasses of pure water throughout the day.

On rising: take 2 fresh squeezed lemons, 1 tbsp. maple syrup in 8 oz. of water; or have a glass of aloe vera juice (add 1 – 2 tbsp. to 8 oz. of pure water); or apple juice.

Breakfast: have a fruit fiber mix of prunes, raisins and apples. Top with a little yogurt, vanilla kefir or apple juice; or have a fiber drink.

Mid-morning: make an IBS healing juice: juice 4 handfuls greens: 1 spinach, 1 parsley, 1 kale, and 1 arugula; 2 large tomatoes; ¼ head green cabbage; 4 carrots with tops, and 2 stalks celery with  leaves; a 4 oz. tub alfalfa sprouts;  and a few sprigs of fresh mint. If you're low on time, as an alternative, have a green superfood drink.

Lunch: Have a simple green salad with a special Ginger-Flaxseed Dressing. For 2 cups: blend 1 cucumber chopped, 1 tbsp. flax seeds, 1 tbsp. fresh grated ginger, 1 tsp. sesame oil, and 1½ cups water; have a mixed veggie juice of your choice.

Mid-afternoon: have a carrot juice; or green tea, or apple/alfalfa sprout juice.

Dinner: have steamed brown rice and mixed steamed vegetables. Sprinkle with chopped dry seaweeds (like dulse or kelp). Add 1 tbsp. flax or olive oil, and 1 tbsp. Liquid Aminos. Or, make a high fiber veggie broth: In 2½ cups water, cook 2 cups chopped fresh mixed vegetables, add 1 tsp. miso and 2 tbsp. chopped dried seaweeds

Before Bed: have another aloe juice drink; or papaya juice; or nutritional yeast broth for B vitamins.

It’s never easy to change daily habits. But since life isn’t going to slow down, a conscious effort must be made to break the vicious digestive circle.  Keep remembering how much better you will feel.

To Life-long health,

Linda Page

Do You Need A Colon Detox?

The Importance of a Colon Cleanse

A colon elimination cleanse is a cleanse most of us need. The latest estimates show that over 90% of disease in America is directly or indirectly attributable to an unhealthy colon. As the solid waste management organ for the entire body, your colon is also the easiest breeding ground for putrefactive bacteria, viruses and parasites. A nationwide survey reveals that one in every six people have parasites living somewhere in the body.

Hardly any healing program will work without a colon cleanse as part of it. Problems like headaches, skin blemishes, bad breath, fatigue, arthritis and heart disease are linked to a congested colon. Colon and bowel malfunctions are one of the biggest factors in accelerated aging. Cleansing your colon lightens the toxic load on every other part of your body... even your mind (mental dullness is a sign of colon congestion). When colon health is compromised, waste backs up, becomes toxic, and releases the toxins into the bloodstream. Real healing takes place at the deepest cellular levels. Your blood feeds your cells. The nutrients that reach your blood get there by the way of the colon. So, a clogged, dirty colon means toxins in your blood.

Is your colon toxic? Ask yourself these questions:

...Is your elimination time slow?

Bowel transit time should be approximately twelve hours. Slow bowel transit time allows wastes to become rancid. Blood capillaries lining the colon absorb these poisons into the bloodstream, exposing the rest of your body to the toxins.

...Do you eat fast food, highly processed, synthetic, or chemical laced foods?

A clean, strong system can metabolize or eliminate many pollutants that come into your body, but if you are constipated, they are stored in your system. As more and different chemicals enter your body they tend to inter-react with those that are already there, forming second generation chemicals more harmful than the originals. Colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, diverticulosis, ileitis and Crohn's disease, are all signs of waste congestion. They're on the rise, too. Over 100,000 Americans have a colostomy every year!

...Is your digestion poor?

The most common sign of toxic bowel overload is poor digestion. If you're eating a lot of rich, red meats and cheeses, white bread, sugary, salty foods or fried foods, they're robbing your body of critical electrolytes and they have almost no fiber for digestion. A high fiber diet is both cure and prevention for waste elimination problems. Eating high fiber means you're moving food through your digestive system quickly and easily. A low residue diet causes a gluey state - and your intestinal contractions can't work efficiently. You can picture this if you remember the hard paste formed by white flour and water when you were a kid. A lot of the food we eat today is simply crammed into the colon, never fully excreted.

Media attention has been focused for decades on high fiber foods. Everybody in America must have changed their diet to a more colon-healthy pattern, right? This is simply not the case. Americans target their diets to reduce fat at all costs, often at the expense of a fiber-rich diet.

Check your fiber. The protective level of fiber in your diet is easily measured:

  • The stool should be light enough to float.

  • Bowel movements should be regular, daily and effortless.

  • The stool should be almost odorless, signaling less bowel transit time.

  • There should be little gas or flatulence.

Colon Self Test

Could your body use a colon cleanse?

  • Constipated most of the time? a colon cleanse softens and removes colon congestion

  • Feeling heavy and bloated? a colon cleanse helps you lose colon congestive weight

  • Gassy with audible bowel rumbling and discomfort after you eat? a colon cleanse removes gluey materials impairing digestion

  • Catch a cold, or flu every few weeks? a colon cleanse releases excess mucous that harbors viruses

  • Tired for no real reason? a colon cleanse boosts immune and liver response for more energy

  • Have a coated tongue, bad breath, or body odor? a colon cleanse clears rancidity that causes bad odors

  • Do you feel mentally slow and tired? a colon cleanse lets more blood circulation get to your brain

  • Skin unusually sallow and dull? a colon cleanse removes toxin that come out through your skin

  • Have a degenerative disease like cancer, arthritis or lupus? a colon cleanse removes toxic elements

  • Cholesterol numbers too high? a colon cleanse increases absorption of cholesterol-lowering foods

If you answered yes to any of these questions, a colon cleanse could provide you tremendous benefit to your overall health and well being.

 

Colon Detox Plan

3 to 5 Day Nutrition Plan

The 4 key elements: enzymes from high chlorophyll plants; fiber from fruits and vegetables: probiotics from cultured foods like yogurts; water at least eight glasses a day.

The night before your colon cleanse... Try a gentle herbal laxative

  • Soak dried figs, prunes and raisins in water; add 1 tb. molasses, cover, leave to soak over night.

The next 3-5 days...

  • On rising: take a cleansing booster product. Take 1000mg vitamin C with bioflavonoids to raise body glutathione levels.

  • Breakfast: discard dried fruits from soaking water and eat with a small glass of the liquid.

  • Mid-morning: take 2 tbsp. aloe juice concentrate in a glass of juice or water and 1000mg vitamin C.

  • Lunch: take a small glass of fresh carrot juice.

  • Mid-afternoon: take an herbal colon cleansing tea, Bloat Release™ Tea.

  • About 5 o' clock: a small glass of potassium broth, or fresh carrot juice.

  • Dinner: take a glass of apple or papaya juice and 1000mg vitamin C.

  • Before Bed: repeat the herbal cleansers that you took on rising with a cup of mint tea.

Eat a raw foods salad on the last night of your cleanse.

To boost your cleanse, add 2 or 3 cleansing boosters:

  • Chlorophyll sources: Energy Green Renewal™ Drink Mix

  • Enzymes: Dr. Enzyme™ between meals

  • Electrolytes speed up a cleanse: Nature's Path Trace-Lyte Liquid Minerals; Arise & Shine Alkalizer.

  • Fiber support: Planetary TRI-CLEANSE; AloeLife FiberMate.

Note 1: Drugstore laxatives aren't really cleansers. They offer only temporary relief, are usually habit-forming, destructive to intestinal membranes, and don't get to the cause of the problem. The laxative so irritates the colon that the bowels expel whatever loose material is around. Note 2: Bowel elimination problems are often chronic and may need several rounds of cleansing. Alternate cleansing with periods of eating a healthy diet.

 

Colon Cleanse Bodywork

Techniques to enhance your cleanse: Irrigate: a colonic irrigation is a good way to start a colon/bowel cleanse. Grapefruit seed extract (15 to 20 drops in a gallon of water) is effective, especially if there is colon toxicity along with constipation. Try a catnip or diluted liquid chlorophyll enema every other night during the cleanse.

Exercise: Take a brisk walk for an hour every day to help keep your elimination channels moving.

Bathe: Take several long warm baths during your cleanse. Dry skin brushing will help release toxins coming out through your skin. Lemon Detox Bath: add into warm bath - 5 drops lemon essential oil and 2 drops geranium essential oil.

Massage therapy: Get one good lower back and pelvis massage during your cleanse.

Visualize your detox: Close your eyes; inhale and exhale long and slowly. As you exhale, visualize toxins dislodging and leaving your colon. As you inhale, visualize nourishing nutrients rebuilding vibrancy.

5 Easy Steps To Less Indigestion, Heartburn And Gas

5 Secrets to Better Digestion 1. Take ENZYMES. We are born with a limited supply of enzymes which become depleted with age. But enzymes can be easily brought into your body through fresh foods. If all your food is cooked, microwaved, or processed above 118º Fahrenheit, all of its enzymes are destroyed. Enzymes are especially critical for digestion. If the foods you eat do not contain enough enzymes for digestion, the body has to pull from its reserves in your liver or pancreas, weakening enzyme dependent processes in these areas like detoxification or hormone secretion.

When you lack enzymes for digestion, bacteria feed off the undigested food in the GI tract, producing symptoms like gas, bloating, heartburn and constipation. I have worked with thousands of people over the years with digestive problems. In every case, when an otherwise healthy person added more plant enzymes to their diet (either through fresh foods or enzyme supplements), digestive problems were drastically reduced. People carrying extra weight from body congestion often drop 10 lbs. Enzymes even overcome food allergies.

Supplementing with amylase, the plant enzyme which digests starches, renders gluten-rich grains like wheat and rye harmless to people with gluten enteropathy, a severe intestinal malabsorption syndrome caused by a gluten allergy to gluten-rich grains. Enzyme-rich foods smooth out both digestion and elimination. Have a green salad every day! Consider supplemental enzymes, too. A broad spectrum digestive enzyme is an excellent choice for digestive problems. To support immune response, Dr. Enzyme with Protease and Bromelain is highly recommended.

2. Take PROBIOTICS. Literally meaning “for life”, probiotics are “friendly bacteria,” like Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacteria bifidum, that inhabit your digestive tract and maintain the inner ecology critical to digestion and health. They keep out pathogens like viruses, yeast and harmful microorganisms by competing with them for space in the gastrointestinal tract. Research from the University of Delaware finds that bifidobacteria actually have the ability to remove cancer cells or the enzymes which lead to their formation! Probiotics are a powerful preventive against digestive problems like diarrhea, constipation and even more serious problems like inflammatory bowel disease, even colon cancer.

Chemicals in your food or environment (like chlorine in drinking water), fast food, a stressful lifestyle, excessive alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking and certain prescription drugs all deplete your body’s supply of probiotics.  Antibiotics, by far, are the biggest offender in probiotic depletion. (In France, Japan and India, doctors routinely recommend acidophilus when they prescribe antibiotics.)

Probiotics are constantly at work to keep you healthy and energized and your digestion smooth. I recommend eating more cultured foods rich in these organisms, like yogurt, kefir or raw sauerkraut. High quality probiotic supplements are widely available for optimum digestion.

3. Practice good FOOD COMBINING. Sometimes, it’s not what you eat that’s making you sick, it’s how you combine the foods you eat. Proper food combining can still make all the difference for your digestion. Different foods need different enzymes to digest well. Your intelligent body activates the proper enzyme when the food reaches your mouth. Eating foods that are not compatible can cause fermentation in the stomach, leading to gas, constipation or diarrhea- clear signs that food is not being assimilated well.

Most experts think human enzyme assimilation was developed very early, when our species ate almost all fresh or dried foods. Foods we might have eaten together were naturally compatible because of harvest times and seasons. We traditionally ate certain foods at the same time, and we developed the capacity to digest them at the same time. Today we can eat any type of food we want when our taste-buds want it…… and that gets us into trouble. Enzymes which digest one type of food but are incompatible with another type in the same meal are either blocked or get confused, and we get the non-compatible food signs of gas and bloating.

Our digestive systems have adapted somewhat over the millenia.  Unless your digestion is seriously compromised, you may not need to follow all the food combining rules all the time. Sometimes we let these things control our lives and lose the pleasure of eating. For myself, I try to follow just two principles: I eat fruits alone and on an empty stomach in the morning. I don’t eat fruits and vegetables together. To learn more, please refer to a good “Correct Food Combining Chart” available online or in health food stores.

4. Eat more FIBER. By now, most of you know that fiber is good for you. Boosting fiber intake from grains like oats can lower harmful LDL cholesterol levels linked to heart disease. It speeds weight loss by suppressing the appetite and reducing colon congestion. It also improves glucose tolerance for people with diabetes and provides protection against breast and colon cancer development. And, of course, fiber is vital for your digestion. Fiber keeps the entire digestive system running smoothly by decreasing the transit time of food in the intestines. (Food is more likely to ferment and putrefy, causing indigestion the longer it remains in your gut!)  Fiber is a system regulator, not a laxative. It relieves both constipation and diarrhea by increasing the weight and frequency of stools. Increasing fiber intake is a primary treatment for even serious digestive problems like diverticulitis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

But, most people don’t get enough fiber from their diets. In fact, today’s statistics tell us that most Americans need to double their fiber intake to get the 30 to 35 grams a day recommended by health professionals. Six half-cup servings of whole grains, cereal or legumes and 4 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables each day can give you the fiber you need to stay regular and healthy. Fiber supplements are also a good choice as an addition to a balanced diet.

5. Eat more ALKALINE FOODS. The typical American diet relies on too many acid-forming foods. The body, by design, is slightly alkaline, with a pH of 7.4. When the body becomes too acidic, it pulls alkaline minerals like sodium, calcium, potassium and magnesium from its reserves to restore an alkaline state. Over the long-term, this becomes dangerous. Mineral are the building blocks of life. Even small deficiencies are linked to depression, osteoporosis and premature aging.

An acidic body condition is the primary cause of GERD (Gastro-Esophageal Reflux Disorder) the most common cause of heartburn for 40 million Americans. GERD is also implicated in chronic fatigue syndrome, arthritis, cancer, allergies and fungal infections. Bringing more alkaline foods into your diet not only eases your indigestion and heartburn, it may prevent the onset of serious disease later!

• ACID-FORMING FOODS to limit: refined sugar, white flour, alcohol, soft drinks, coffee and caffeine containing foods, red meat, and fried, fatty foods. • ALKALINE FORMING FOODS to increase: mineral water, land/sea vegetables, sea salt, herbal teas, miso, brown rice, honey, fruits and fruit juices.

To Life-long health,

Linda Page

The Problem with Antacids


We spend $1.7 billion on indigestion remedies each year! Taking acid blocking drugs can mean that important B vitamins (especially B-12), minerals and trace minerals aren’t assimilated well. One survey shows that 15 million Americans have heartburn every day! Antacids offer temporary relief, but excessive use can wreak havoc on digestive health. They themselves can be a health problem because they radically change digestive chemistry. Do Any Of These Antacid Problems Pertain To You? 1. The tolerance effect: The more you use antacids, the more you need them. Antacids either neutralize stomach HCl (hydrochloric acid), that you need for digestion, or they block it, confuse the body and disrupt its normal processes. If you take a lot of antacids, your body overcompensates, producing excess stomach acid.

2. Antacids disrupt pH balance: Optimum pH is between 7.35 and 7.45. If you take lots of antacids, your GI tract fluctuates between over alkaline and over acid, leading to problems like diarrhea or constipation, gallbladder problems, hiatal hernia, even malnutrition. A friend thought his heartburn symptoms would improve if he doubled up on his acid blocker dosage. He ended up in the bathroom all night, passing completely undigested food. Disrupting body pH alters bowel ecology, too, potentially causing dramatic overgrowth of candida yeasts.

3. Pernicious ingredients: Many antacids contain aluminum which causes constipation and bone pain. Others overdose you on magnesium, causing diarrhea. Some contain both aluminum and magnesium, confusing your body with alternating constipation and diarrhea. Antacids full of sodium may cause water retention. Most have chemical coloring agents that can cause allergic reactions in some people, or lead to mood changes if taken regularly…… the way many people take them.

4. Some drugs interact with antacids: Antacids can decrease HIV drug absorption by up to 23%. Oral contraceptives may lose their effectiveness if taken with antacids. People using NSAIDS drugs for arthritis along with antacids suffer 2½ times more serious gastrointestinal complications than those taking a placebo! Antacids not only block drug absorption, they also block your food absorption of nutrients, especially B12, necessary for virtually all immune responses.

5. Some antacids build up in the body, impeding body processes: I know a woman who was hospitalized three times for kidney stones until her physician finally advised her to stop taking her over-the-counter antacids because the unabsorbed calcium in them was causing the kidney stone formation.

If you’re one of the millions of people who use have used antacids regularly for years you may be wondering, what can you do? Is it too late?  It’s never too late to rebalance the body and rebuild healthy digestion. This month I'll be sharing numerous, simple natural ways to bring the body back into balance.

To Life-long health,

Linda Page

Is a Gluten-Free Lifestyle Right For You?

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Food allergies and gluten sensitivities are one of the fastest growing forms of allergic reactions in the U.S. today. Well over 35 million Americans suffer from food allergies. The numbers of people who suffer from sensitivities to wheat or gluten-containing products are even higher. Over time and left untreated, gluten allergies can lead to chronic problems like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (I.B.S.), Crohn’s disease and Celiac disease. Most ancient civilizations enjoyed whole grains as a regular part of their daily diet. Is the human body today that different? What’s really causing today’s gluten sensitivity problem? It often develops in aging populations today, people who often have low digestive enzymes and Hcl, and who eat a large amount of pre-prepared and refined foods, and are regularly taking an overload of prescription and over-the counter drugs that damage the digestive tract.

Do You Have Signs Of A Wheat Or Gluten Sensitivity? •    Itchy, watery eyes or blurred vision, hives •    Diarrhea, gas and constipation, nausea or mental fuzziness after eating •    Heart palpitations and sweating, muscle weakness or poor coordination, headaches •    Ringing in the ears, chronic ear infections and congestion •    Excessively swollen stomach, unexplained obesity •    Hypothyroidism and/or hypoglycemia •    Hyperactivity, irritability and flushing in children

What’s Causing The Grain Allergy Epidemic?

1.  Heavily Treated, Overly Refined Grains: Wheat is one of the primary grains consumed in America, but today’s wheat crops are heavily sprayed with pesticides, a major suspect in food allergies and reactions. In addition, the majority of whole grain products you purchase at the grocery store are made with “enriched” flour which has been refined and bleached, a process which strips it of 80% of its vitamins and minerals. Four nutrients (iron, thiamin, riboflavin and niacin) are added back, but are in synthetic forms that are less usable by the body. Then, a host of additives, preservatives, colorings and sugars are added, contributing to the chemical overload. Most commercial wheat products are difficult for even the strongest digestive system to process over a long period of time.

2.  Low Hcl (hydrochloric acid), Drug Side Effects and Enzyme Deficiency: Hcl is a stomach acid necessary for proper digestion. Hcl decreases with age; One study showed that 80% of people at 84 years old had low Hcl. Pepsin, an enzyme required to break down protein for digestion, is activated by Hcl. Further, antacids which neutralize stomach HCL (Hydrochloric acid), vital for digestion, also disrupt normal processes. The use of NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) is a common thread in digestive disorders because of their clear link to ulcers and bleeding in the GI tract. Low digestive enzymes from a lack of raw foods is common today and can lead to poor digestion, too. Over time, the effects of undigested or partially digested food in the gut can be devastating. The gut wall becomes more permeable and undigested proteins begin leaking out into the bloodstream. The immune system sees the protein particles as invaders, causing inflammation and the food allergy response. Gluten proteins (found in wheat) are especially difficult to process and are a main factor in the development of Celiac disease, a type of malabsorption that causes severe intestinal problems, and Candida yeast overgrowth. People often combine high gluten grains with heavy proteins in meat or high sugar in fruit. This combination further impairs healthy digestion. Just adding more enzymes from raw foods or supplements is a great way to get wheat sensitivities and poor digestion under control. A 1995 Italian study shows supplementing with pancreatic enzymes enhances the benefits of a gluten-free diet for Celiac patients. See my whole chapter on “Enzyme Rich Foods,” on pg. 102 of my new book Healthy Healing 14th Edition for more information.

What’s Left After You Eliminate Wheat From Your Diet? Eliminating wheat or gluten may seem like an impossible task, but there are many healthy options to ease the transition. Look for wheat-free and gluten-free choices at your health food store. Pasta (I like vegetable pastas made with quinoa or rice), cereal (hot and cold), whole grain flours, breads and snackfoods are all available.

Try these options: rice (red, brown, wild, risotto), amaranth, corn, millet, oats (not tolerated by all celiacs), and quinoa. Legumes like chickpea (hummus), lentils and split peas (dal) make hearty side dishes with none of the risk of wheat or gluten. Rice breads are a tasty option for a wheat free sandwich. They’re a little crumbly, but are often sweetened with fruit juice to enhance flavor, and usually well accepted by gluten intolerant people.

Note 1: Ancient grains like spelt and kamut can be enjoyed by 70% of people allergic to commercial wheat, but neither is good choice for a person with true celiac disease (gluten allergy).

Note 2: Soba noodles made from 100% buckwheat are another good choice. Still, many processed soba foods contain gluten and are not a good choice for people with true celiac disease (gluten allergy).

Note 3: While not as nutritious as the grains listed above, people with gluten sensitivity can sometimes tolerate tapioca and potato starch. Take a small amount to see - you’ll know right away if they’re OK for you.

To Life-long health,

Linda Page