Friday, May 30, 2014

iPhone Tracking Your Every Move With 'Frequent Locations'

10 critical upgrades for a healthier body

Friday, May 30, 2014 by: Derek Henry
(NaturalNews) It is often difficult for people to completely drop old health compromising habits and pick up completely new ones, even if it is a better choice for their health. Due to that fact, transition is an important strategy. Here are 10 upgrades to transition to in order to reach that next level of health.
Upgrading water is one of the most important factors to consider when becoming healthy. Ditch the contaminated tap and hormone disrupting plastic bottled water and choose spring, mineralized, or filtered water instead.

Don't start the most important meal of the day with coffee and sugary cereals. This is a bad way to wake up the digestive system and it will not adequately power anyone through their morning.

Opt for a superfood smoothie instead that is full of enzymes, probiotics, vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, fiber, and other health promoting nutrients. Incorporate high quality superfoods for the most benefits.

Stop shopping in the juice aisle! There are very few juices on the shelves that are not "dead" and full of added sugar.

Have juice once a day, and make it 15 minutes prior to a meal so that the probiotics and enzymes can facilitate a healthier digestive process. It will also help energize the body, and the amount of nutrients in an 8 oz glass will provide more nutrients than many people get in one day.

There is no debate that North America is on a sugar high. It is one of the most difficult things to avoid, since it is in near everything and most people are addicted to it in some shape or form.

A good way to ditch a lot of the sugar is to use stevia, an herbal sweetener that does not incur the negative effects of regular sugar, like feeding candida. Try it in smoothies, teas, and other beverages.

Salt has been demonized, but the devil is in the details.

In the process of making regular table salt, aluminum, ferro cyanide, and bleach are used. These toxic materials, combined with the fact that the salt has also been stripped of minerals, make table salt dangerous to ingest.

Upgrade to a good, full spectrum sea salt in order to avoid all of that dangerous processing and absorb the full spectrum of nutrients that come in a good sea salt.

Eat organic
By now, people have heard about organic or are already eating organic food as much as possible. For those who still haven't made that transition yet, its important to remember its one of the most important.

When eating organic, pesticides, GMOs, antibiotics, and hormones are avoided, and it helps protect the environment as well. For those on a budget, consider checking into the Environmental Working Group's (EWG) Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 lists, to see which foods are most important to buy organic.

Eat more plant protein
According to the EWG, the scientific evidence is increasingly clear that eating too much of greenhouse gas-intensive animal meats boosts exposure to toxins and increases the risk of a wide variety of serious health problems, including heart disease, certain cancers, obesity and, in some studies, diabetes.

With complete plant proteins offering up to 60 percent of highly digestible protein, it makes sense to increase consumption of plant material.

Eat more raw, nutritious foods
People have grown accustomed to cooking their food, and perhaps a little too much. Cooking will destroy delicate enzymes and probiotics, and can also raise your level of cancer causing agents like acrylamides.

Choose to eat food more raw, and always incorporate some amount into each meal to allow the intact enzymes and probiotics to help digest the cooked portions.

Sources for this article include:

About the author:
Derek Henry, B.Kin, is a highly revered holistic health coach and world renowned natural health blogger who created Healing the Body to help people understand the fundamental principles to exceptional health so they can overcome their own health challenges. 

His popular Wellness Transformation E-Guide and Ultimate Reset coaching program gives people step by step solutions to achieve a healthier body and mind, while empowering them to maintain that lifestyle through a fundamental education based on the 4 pillars of true health. 

If you would like to learn more about what he can do holistically to improve your health, check out his popular free health consult.

Excessive Endurance Cardio Isnt Good For Your Heart

Excessive Endurance Cardio Isnt Good For Your Heart

Thursday, May 29, 2014

10 Benefits of Celtic Sea Salt and Himalayan Salt by Dr. Josh Axe and Eric Zielinsk

Salt has been used as a natural flavoring for thousands of years and it’s so vital to our existence that we’ve even been created with a portion of our tongue designated to taste saltiness.
I did a Daniel Fast last year and eliminated salt from my diet completely for 10 days and everything I ate tasted completely bland. During that time it made me realize how essential salt is to our lives and caused me to spend some extra hours researching all of the many uses and benefits of celtic sea salt and himalayan salt.
As I’m sure you’re aware, salt is seen as negative and bad by many organizations like the American Heart Association. Now I’m not saying you should start shoveling salt into your mouth but I want to clarify there is a major difference between processed table salt and real sea salt.
Sea Salt vs Table Salt
Table “salt” is manufactured by taking natural salt (such as crude oil flake leftovers) and heating it to 1200° Fahrenheit. During this extreme process, the chemical composition is completely altered and all of the nutritional benefits are destroyed.
In the end, generic table “salt” ends up being about 97.5% sodium chloride and a 2.5% balance containing an array of ingredients including:
  • Anti-caking chemicals.
  • Iodine to prevent goiters.
  • MSG and/or white processed sugar to help stabilize the iodine.
  • And aluminum derivatives such as sodium solo-co-aluminate.
Trust me when I tell you that no one really knows what’s in this stuff and calling it “salt” is a complete mis-representation! Ultimately, this processed “fake” salt puts people at risk of developing cardiovascular events and chronic disease because of elevated blood pressure and arteriosclerosis.
So when the AHA says that salt is bad for you, this is correct only when referring to table “salt.” Unlike real salt, processed “salt” will cause your body to retain fluids and is so toxic that your body will operate in a sympathetic fight-or-flight response to protect itself from damage when you eat it.
Subsequently, it should be no surprised that people who use these products develop diabetes, gout and obesity more than people who don’t.
Additionally, most table “salt” is iodized and puts people at risk for over-iodization, which has been shown to abnormally enlarge the thyroid gland and cause thyroid-related autoimmune disorders.
Real Salt Benefits and Beyond
On the other hand, if we were talking about REAL salt like celtic sea salt or himalayan salt then I believe it has many benefits and should be used daily.
Because of the life-giving nutrition sea salt contains:
  • Contains 60 trace minerals which help you stay hydrated.
  • Sufficient sodium levels that help balance your sodium-potassium ratios.
  • Powerful electrolytes like magnesium.
  • Trace elements required for proper adrenal, immune and thyroid function.
  • Digestive enzyme enhancers, which help your body absorb more nutrients from the foods that you eat.
What is the best sea salt?
Himalayan Salt
It is claimed by many that Himalayan crystal salt is the purest salt available on the planet. With a history dating back to Earth’s creation, it is believed to be composed of dried remnants of the original, primal sea.
Known as “pink gold,” Himalayan crystal salt is actually a beautiful translucent pink and contains all of the 84 elements found in your body. Because of amazing nutrient load, doctors of functional medicine report that regularly eating Himalayan salt can help:
  • Regulate the water content throughout your body
  • Promote healthy pH balance in your cells (particularly your brain cells)
  • Promote blood sugar health and can help reduce the signs of aging
  • Assist in the generation of hydroelectric energy in cells in your body
  • Absorb food particles through your intestinal tract
  • Support respiratory health
  • Promote sinus health
  • Prevent of muscle cramps
  • Promote bone strength
  • Regulate your sleep
  • Support your libido
  • Promote vascular health
  • Regulate your blood pressure with sufficient water and potassium intake.
Celtic Sea Salt
Another ancient commodity, Celtic sea salt is comparable to Himalayan crystal salt in its composition and health benefits. Being of a grayish hue, it is naturally harvested in Brittany France near the Celtic Sea using a 2,000-year old Celtic method that is crucial to preserving its life-giving nutrition profile. Weber’s description of this process sums it up well:
The salt fields of Brittany are lined with a natural layer of clay and sand…. In order to harmonize the trace elements, the hand raking of the moist crystals is done by artisans with a skillful touch.
The method is followed by a dedicated group of professional natural salt farmers in Brittany, who perpetuate the traditional skills that have been passed down through generations from antiquity. When harvested in these ways, natural Celtic sea salts are highly beneficial to one’s health as they possess many therapeutic qualities.
It has been reported that Celtic Sea salt is powerfully beneficial for your health and can help:
  1. Alkalize the body
  2. Balance blood sugars
  3. Eliminate mucus buildup
  4. Build immunity
  5. Improve brain function
  6. Increase energy
  7. Provide electrolyte balance
  8. Promote restful sleep
  9. Prevent muscle cramps
  10. Regulate heartbeat and blood pressure
Interestingly, this salt will retain its moisture and will be moist to touch, in spite of how you store it. Think of this as a gentle reminder of its ocean-source and continual life-giving properties!
Do you use Sea Salt or Himalayan Salt? Can you taste the difference?

American Heart Association. Eating too much salt led to nearly 2.3 million heart-related deaths worldwide in 2010. [Internet]. Copyright 2014. Available at:
McCarron DA. Dietary sodium and cardiovascular and renal disease risk factors: dark horse or phantom entry? Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2008 Jul;23(7):2133-7.
Bagcchi S. Hypothyroidism is still prevalent in India despite promotion of iodised salt, study shows. British Medical Journal. 2013 Dec 24;347:f7693.
10 Key Health Benefits and Usage Celtic Sea Salt. Copyright 2010-2013. Available at:

Jeff Foster

_Life Without a Centre
Some very good news…

1. You don’t need all the answers right now.
Right here, right now, in this moment, you don’t have to ‘figure out’ the rest of your life, no matter what anyone says.
You don’t need all the answers. They will come, in time, or not, or perhaps the unncecessary questions will fall away.
There is no rush. Life is not in a hurry. Be like the seasons. Winter is not trying to become summer. Spring does not rush towards autumn. The grass grows at its own pace.
The choices that will be made will be made, and you’ve no choice about that. The decisions that will happen will happen, events will unfold, but right now perhaps you don’t need to know the solutions or the outcomes or how best to proceed. Perhaps not knowing is a welcome guest at life’s banquet. Perhaps openness to possibility is a beloved friend. Perhaps even confusion can come to rest here.
And so, instead of trying to ‘fix’ our lives, instead of trying to neatly resolve the unresolveable and quickly complete the epic story of a fictitious ‘me’, we simply relax into utter not knowing, unravelling in the warm embrace of mystery, sinking deeply into the moment, savouring it fully, in all its uniqueness and wonder.
And then, perhaps without any effort, without any struggle or stress, without ‘you’ being involved at all, the true answers will emerge in their own sweet time.

2. There is nothing wrong with you, and there never was.
Friend, from the very beginning, you were not broken.
You were not born into sin. You were not destined for the spiritual garbage heap. There was never anything fundamentally missing from your life.
You just thought that there was. Others tried to convince you that you were not good enough, because they too felt not good enough. In your innocence, and with no evidence to the contrary, you believed them. So you spent all those years trying to fix, purify and perfect yourself. You sought power, wealth, fame and even enlightenment to prove your worth as a ‘me’. You compared yourself to other versions of ‘me’, and always felt inferior or superior, and it all became so exhausting, trying to reach those unreachable goals, trying to live up to some image that you didn’t even fully believe in anyway, and you longed for the deep rest of yourself. 
But you were always perfect, you see, from the very beginning. Perfect in your total imperfection. Your imperfections, your quirks, your flaws, your weirdnesses, your unique and irreplaceable flavours, were what made you so loveable, so human, so real, so relatable. Even in your imperfection, you were always a perfect expression of life, a beloved child of the universe, a complete work of art, unique in all the world and deserving of all the riches of life. 
It was never about being a perfect ‘me’. It was always about being perfectly Here, perfectly yourself, in all your divine strangeness.  
“Forget your perfect offering”, Leonard Cohen sings. “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”

3. Enlightenment is Not A Destination.
There is no fixed path to enlightenment.
Enlightenment is not a goal, the resting place at the end of a long journey -that’s the mind’s version of enlightenment.
Enlightenment is the lighting up of where you are right now.  
This is very good news. It means that nobody is the authority on your path – no teacher, no guru, no religious leader. It means that nobody can tell you the right ‘way’ for you. It means that you cannot go wrong, even if you think you’ve gone wrong. It means that nothing that happens can ever lead you off the path, for the path is whatever happens, without exception. Nothing can take you away from the miracle of life, or bring you closer to it for that matter, since the miracle is all around, already shining brightly, as every thought, sensation, image, feeling, smell, sound, and as the deeper miracle of the one who is aware of all of this. 
Be the awareness, shining on the moment, whatever its contents. Doubt, fear, sadness, anger, intense confusion – maybe, just maybe, these are neither enemies nor blocks to enlightenment, but expressions of a deeper intelligence, the same incomprehensibly vast and awake intelligence that gives birth to stars and moves the ocean tides and sends each and every living thing off on its paradoxical journey towards its own being. 
Come out of the story of time and space and progress towards a future goal, and trust a sacred moment. Take any moment. Any moment at all. This moment. For any moment is the access point.  
There are never any blocks – only access points.
You are not some separate entity on a long journey towards a future completion.  
You are pure poetry.

4. Your life cannot go wrong. 
In reality, your world is set up so that nothing happens to you, but everything happens for you – for your awakening, for your growth, for your inspiration, for your exploration – even if you forget that, or sometimes cannot see it, or sometimes fall into distraction and despair.
When there is no fixed destination, you cannot ever lose your destination, so you cannot ever lose your path, so nothing that happens in your life can take you off your path. Your path IS what happens, and what happens IS your path. There is no other.
Everything is a gift on this unbreakable path that you call your life – the laughter, the tears, the times of great sorrow, the experiences of profound loss, the pain, the confusion, the times you believe you’ll never make it, even the overwhelming heartbreak of love – even if you forget that sometimes, or cannot see that sometimes, or lose faith absolutely in the entire show sometimes.
But even the loss of faith in the show is part of the show, and even the scene where ‘something goes wrong’ is not indicative of the show going wrong, and so you are always exactly where you need to be, believe it or not, even if you are not.
Life can be trusted absolutely, even when trust seems a million light-years away, and life cannot go wrong, for all is life, and life is all. Understand this, know it in your heart, and spirituality is profoundly simple, as simple as breathing, as natural as gazing up at the stars at night and falling into silent wonder. The universe is more beautiful than you could ever imagine.

With love,
Jeff Foster.

> Read more of Jeff writings in The Wordless Library
> See Jeff’s meetings & retreats schedule.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Homeopathic Mistakes You and Your Pet Should Avoid

Homeopathic Mistakes You and Your Pet Should Avoid

THYROID CANCER EPIDEMIC Caused by misinformation not cancer.

The Truth About the Lyme Disease Epidemic

by Dr. David Williams
Filed Under: General Health
Last Reviewed 05/22/2014

Anyone who’s had some exposure to Lyme disease, either as a patient or a friend or relative of one, knows how notoriously difficult the condition is to deal with. That’s because the corkscrew shaped spirochete bacterium associated with Lyme can change forms, mimicking the symptoms of nearly 350 different illnesses evading the immune system and antibiotics, wreaking havoc on the body. Successful antibiotic treatment is possible only in the early stages of infection so understand the signs of infection and what you can do to protect yourself.
Here are my suggestions:
Know how you can get Lyme disease. It was previously believed that Lyme disease was only transmitted by ticks. However, reasearchers and doctors I’ve spoken with have now found live spirochetes of Lyme in fleas, mites, and mosquitoes. And although it was first thought the disease couldn’t be transmitted directly from human to human, the live spirochetes have now also been found in blood, urine, tears, semen, breast milk, cord blood, pool water, and vaginal secretions. (There are also some reports of the spirochete being found in cows, possibly affecting our milk supply). 
Take preventive measures while outside. If you do intend to spend time outdoors, it would be wise to use a DEET-free insect repellent such as Shoo-Bug on your clothes. After spending time outside, check your body and your children’s meticulously for ticks. They are the size of a pencil tip. Generally the tick needs to remain attached 12 or more hours before it can pass on the infective material, so check yourself and remove the tick as soon as possible, and treat the skin around the bite with alcohol.
Be alert for symptoms.
  • From 3 to 30 days afterward: the bull’s-eye rash at the site of the bite (in half of the cases); fever; chills; headache; muscle and/or joint pain; fatigue.
  • From days to weeks afterward: multiple rashes; facial paralysis (Bell’s palsy); stiff neck; fever; headache; weakness, numbness, or pain in the arms or legs; irregular heartbeat; weakness and fatigue.
  • Weeks to months afterward: arthritis in the lower joints (usually the knees); nervous system problems.
It is often noted that a tick bite carrying Lyme disease will present a bulls-eye wound but this is only true for a fraction of Lyme’s cases, and many patients do not recall having ever seen a bite.
Take Action
Act immediately if you suspect infection. You may have a stronger ability to beat the disease and detoxify the spirochete’s toxins from your system if you have maintained good bacterial flora in your lower bowel through the use of probiotics and fermented foods. Yet another reason to incorporate probiotics and fermented foods into your lifestyle!
There are also some effective natural alternatives that have been shown to eliminate the Lyme spirochete when used alone or in conjunction with the antibiotic and anti-protozoal medications.
  • Cat’s claw (Uncaria tomentosa). One study showed that an extract of this Peruvian medicinal plant commonly known as cat’s claw (Uncaria tomentosa) was more effective than antibiotic therapy in eliminating the Lyme spirochete. It is not unusual to continuously take the supplement for as long as 8 to 16 months. If you stop too soon, there’s a greater likelihood of experiencing a relapse.
  • Artemisinin. This is an extract of Chinese wormwood that has been used for decades to treat malaria. I first wrote about artemisinin over 14 years ago. The recommended dosage when used in conjunction with Lyme treatment is 1 capsule (100 mg) taken three times a day by itself without other medications or supplements.
I’m not trying to alarm you or scare you; far from it. My hope is that you’ll be more alert to the problem and realize there are solutions. If you believe you have been infected it is very important you seek the professional care of a Lyme literate doctor to avoid misdiagnosis and prolonged suffering.

Now it’s your turn: Have you ever found a tick on your body?

Secrets That Can Help You Live Longer

Secrets That Can Help You Live Longer

Friday, May 23, 2014

Alzheimer’s Disease—Yes, It’s Preventable!

May 22, 2014 | 211,587 views

By Dr. Mercola
An estimated 5.4 million Americans have Alzheimer's disease, a severe form of dementia,1 and hundreds of thousands more may suffer from an often misdiagnosed subtype called "hippocampal sparing" Alzheimer's, according to recent findings.2
The most recent data3, 4 suggests that well over half a million Americans die from Alzheimer's disease each year, making it the third leading cause of death in the US, right behind heart disease and cancer.
As discussed by Dr. Danielle Ofri in a recent New York Times blog,5 losing your mind, and with it, much of your personality and dignity, is a terrifying proposition. Making matters worse, many doctors shy away from addressing dementia—both with colleagues and their patients.
The reasons are many. Dr. Ofri suggests Alzheimer's strikes at the emotional heart of many clinicians, whose careers depend on the stability and functioning of their own minds and intelligence. In short, it frightens them too much to talk about it.
However, I strongly disagree with her commentary on the lack of strategies to prevent or modify the course of Alzheimer's.
"I suspect... that our reticence stems from deeper issues," Dr. Ofri writes. "All the top 10 killers in America are potentially preventable, or at least modifiable — all except dementia... We have tests to screen for many cancers, and treatments that prolong life... But there's nothing, really, that we can do about dementia.
There aren't any screening tests that can pick up the disease before symptoms appear. And even if there were, there aren't any treatments that make a substantial difference.
For doctors, this is profoundly frustrating. No wonder dementia gets pushed onto the back burner. In the dishearteningly limited time of a medical visit, we're forced to focus on the diseases we can treat."
On the contrary, while early diagnostic tests are in short supply and successful treatments are virtually nonexistent, the evidence shows there's plenty of hope when it comes to prevention!
This is exactly why doctors need to get with the program and start directing their patients toward healthier lifestyles rather than fall into the trap of thinking the situation is hopeless and their patients are helpless victims.
Heart Disease May Increase Your Odds of Developing Alzheimer's
I firmly believe that since there's no conventional cure, now or in the foreseeable future, the issue of prevention is absolutely critical if you want to avoid becoming an Alzheimer's statistic.
Ideally, doctors would begin counseling patients who are in their 20s and 30s on lifestyle strategies that promote heart and brain health throughout life. Then we would probably see a major shift in Alzheimer's statistics for that generation.
As it stands, the evidence points to lifestyle factors, primarily diet, as the driving forces of dementia. There are also many connections between Alzheimer's and other dietary-related diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease, suggesting that ALL of these diseases are preventable through identical means.
For example, previous research suggests diabetics have a doubled risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. Alzheimer's disease was even tentatively dubbed "type 3 diabetes" in 2005, when researchers discovered that your brain produces insulin that is necessary for the survival of your brain cells.
They found that a toxic protein called ADDL removes insulin receptors from nerve cells, thereby rendering those neurons insulin resistant, and as ADDLs accumulate, your memory begins to deteriorate. Recent research also points out that heart disease increases your odds of developing Alzheimer's. As reported by
"Researchers found that artery stiffness -- a condition called atherosclerosis -- is associated with the buildup of beta-amyloid plaque in the brain, a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease."
'This is more than just another example of how heart health relates to brain health. It is a signal that the process of vascular aging may predispose the brain to increased amyloid plaque buildup,' said lead researcher Timothy Hughes...
Plaque builds with age and appears to worsen in those with stiffer arteries, he said. 'Finding and preventing the causes of plaque buildup is going to be an essential factor in the prevention of Alzheimer's disease and extending brain health throughout life,' Hughes added."
Subtype of Alzheimer's Disease Is Often Misdiagnosed

In related news, research7, 8 presented at the 2014 American Academy of Neurology's meeting in Pennsylvania sheds new light on Alzheimer's cases that are often misdiagnosed. Researchers from the Mayo Clinic believe they have identified a variant of the disease, referred to as "hippocampal sparing" Alzheimer's, which is thought to affect an estimated 600,000 Americans. As explained by Medical News Today:9
"All subtypes of Alzheimer's have two specific hallmarks in the brain. Amyloid beta is responsible for the formation of brain plaques, while tau produces tangles in the brain. In order to classify each subtype, the team used tangle counts to create a mathematical algorithm.
They found that while all Alzheimer's subtypes had the same amount of amyloid beta, the hippocampal sparing variant showed tau tangles in unequal areas of the hippocampus. They discovered that in patients with this subtype, tau specifically damages neurons in areas of the brain associated with behavior, motor recognition and awareness, and use of speech and vision."
Of the more than 1,800 Alzheimer's patients included in the study, 11 percent were found to have hippocampal sparing Alzheimer's, which does not destroy memory to the degree typically associated with Alzheimer's. Instead, this subtype of the disease tends to alter behavior, causing uncontrollable anger, visual impairments, speech problems, and the feeling that your limbs do not belong to you. Hippocampal sparing appears to affect more men than women, and the disease tends to set in much earlier than traditional Alzheimer's. Patients with hippocampal sparing also tend to deteriorate at a fast pace.
Misdiagnosis is common, as this subtype spares your memory. Quite often these patients end up being diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia or corticobasal syndrome10 instead. The former is associated with personality changes, while the latter is a progressive neurological disorder that can involve your motor system, cognition, or both, but patients typically present language problems first, followed by motor symptoms.
While the researchers believe that currently available Alzheimer's medications may be more effective for those with hippocampal sparing Alzheimer's than those with more traditional dementia, I firmly believe that drugs are not the answer to any of these conditions. Clearly, at the heart of it all is insulin and leptin resistance, fueled by a diet too high in refined sugars, processed fructose, and grains, combined with far too little healthful fats.
How to Prevent Alzheimer's Disease—A Neurologist Speaks Out

Last year, and again this spring, I interviewed Dr. David Perlmutter, author of the New York Times' bestseller Grain Brain. In my view, Dr. Perlmutter is probably the leading integrative medicine neurologist in the US, and his advice is clear: Alzheimer's is preventable through proper diet. After spending years treating people's neurological symptoms, he grew increasingly frustrated with his profession's lack of ability to get to the root cause. This frustration eventually led him to investigate the role of nutrition, and he became convinced that brain dysfunction is rooted in our modern-day high-grain diet. According to Dr. Perlmutter:
"[Alzheimer's] is a preventable disease. It surprises me at my core that no one's talking about the fact that so many of these devastating neurological problems are, in fact, modifiable based upon lifestyle choices… What we've crystallized it down to now, in essence, is that diets that are high in sugar and carbohydrates, and similarly diets that are low in fat, are devastating to the brain.When you have a diet that has carbohydrates in it, you are paving the way for Alzheimer's disease. I want to be super clear about that. Dietary carbohydrates lead to Alzheimer's disease. It's a pretty profound statement, but it's empowering nonetheless when we realize that we control our diet. We control our choices, whether to favor fat or carbohydrates."
His book, Grain Brain, reveals how and why sugars and carbohydrates destroy your brain, and how to eat for neurological health. He notes Mayo Clinic research that reveals diets rich in carbohydrates are associated with an 89 percent increased risk for dementia while high-fat diets are associated with a 44 percent reduced risk. This combination of very little sugar and carbs, along with higher amounts of healthful fats is KEY for addressing not only Alzheimer's, but diabetes and heart disease as well.
All of these conditions are rooted in insulin and leptin resistance, and the dietary answer is identical for all of them. Understanding this can make your life easier, as you don't need to memorize the dos and don'ts for each and every disease you seek to avoid. Instead, what you need to do is shift over to a mindset that is focused on optimizing health. Disease prevention then becomes a beneficial "side effect."
Alzheimer's Is Directly Related to Elevated Blood Sugar Levels
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in August 2013 demonstrates that even mild elevation of blood sugar—a level of around 105 or 110—is associated with an elevated risk for dementia. Dr. Perlmutter believes it's very important for physicians to become cognizant of this link, and to stop downplaying the risks associated with even mildly elevated blood sugar. So what is an ideal fasting blood sugar level?
Dr. Perlmutter suggests that anything over 92 or 93 is too high. He believes the ideal fasting blood sugar level is around 70-85, with 95 as the maximum. If your fasting blood sugar is over 95 mg/dl, it's definitely time to address your diet to lower it. If you're fat adapted, there's no reason to shun fasting blood sugar levels below 70, as your body is then able to tap into body fat as an energy source. According to Dr. Perlmutter:
"This notion that your brain needs sugar is really old news. Fat, specifically ketones, which your body produces by metabolizing your fat, is now called a 'brain superfuel.' There is even a pharmaceutical product; a medical food that you can write as a prescription, which raises the level of ketones or fat in the bloodstream of patients, offered up now as a treatment for Alzheimer's disease. Who knew? The point is the brain loves to burn fat. That's what we have to shift it over to..."
Hit the Reset Button with Intermittent Fasting
Intermittent fasting is a great tool to help "reset" your body to burn fat as its primary fuel again. Dr. Perlmutter also recommends starting off with a period of fasting, and he's particularly aggressive about it in patients who are insulin/leptin resistant. I typically recommend keeping your fasting insulin level below 3. The so-called normal, however, is anywhere from 5-25 microU per mL. As with fasting blood sugar, please do not make the mistake of thinking that the "normal" insulin range equates to optimal! As noted by Dr. Perlmutter:
"If somebody has an insulin level of 26, they need a lot of work. They need to fast; drop the carbs; add back the good fat. They need to add in some anti-glycating agents like benfotiamine and resveratrol. We need to hit these people aggressively. This is what works. This is what reduces their risk of converting to diabetes, and therefore has a huge role to play in protecting their brains."
The Importance of Saturated Fats for Healthy Brain Function
Our ancestral diet was very high in saturated fats and virtually void of non-vegetable carbohydrates. Today, not only do we eat tremendous amounts of carbohydrates, these carbs are refined and highly processed. In the last decade, we've also shifted over to genetically engineered grains and sugar (GMO sugar beets and corn). Adding insult to injury, for the past 60 years conventional medical authorities have also warned that saturated fats cause heart disease and should be severely restricted.

This inappropriate fat phobia has undoubtedly played a significant role in the dramatic rise in dementia and other neurological disorders, because your brain cannot function properly without fats! The type of fat you eat makes all the difference in the world, though. You want to avoid all trans fats or hydrogenated fats that have been modified in such a way to extend their longevity on the grocery store shelf. This includes margarine, vegetable oils, and various butter-like spreads. Sources of healthy fats to add to your diet include:
Butter made from raw, grass-fed organic milk
Raw dairy
Organic pastured egg yolks
Coconuts and coconut oil (coconut oil actually shows promise as an effective Alzheimer's treatment in and of itself)
Unheated organic nut oils
Raw nuts, such as pecans and macadamia, which are low in protein and high in healthy fats
Grass-fed meats or pasture raised poultry

Other Dietary Considerations
Here's a summary run-down of diet-related strategies that will help optimize your brain function and prevent Alzheimer's:
  • Avoid sugar and refined fructose. Ideally, you'll want to keep your sugar levels to a minimum and your total fructose below 25 grams per day, or as low as 15 grams per day if you have insulin/leptin resistance or any related disorders.
  • Avoid gluten and casein (primarily wheat and pasteurized dairy, but not dairy fat, such as butter). Research shows that your blood-brain barrier is negatively affected by gluten. Gluten also makes your gut more permeable, which allows proteins to get into your bloodstream, where they don't belong. That then sensitizes your immune system and promotes inflammation and autoimmunity, both of which play a role in the development of Alzheimer's.
  • Optimize your gut flora by regularly eating fermented foods or taking a high-potency and high-quality probiotic supplement.
  • Increase consumption of all healthy fats, including animal-based omega-3. Health-promoting fats that your brain needs for optimal function are listed above. Also make sure you're getting enough animal-based omega-3 fats, such as krill oil. (I recommend avoiding most fish because, although fish is naturally high in omega-3, most fish are now severely contaminated with mercury.) High intake of the omega-3 fats EPA and DHA help by preventing cell damage caused by Alzheimer's disease, thereby slowing down its progression, and lowering your risk of developing the disorder.
  • Reduce your overall calorie consumption, and/or intermittently fast. Ketones are mobilized when you replace carbs with coconut oil and other sources of healthy fats. As mentioned above intermittent fasting is a powerful tool to jumpstart your body into remembering how to burn fat and repair the inulin/leptin resistance that is also a primary contributing factor for Alzheimer's. To learn more, please see this previous article.
  • Improve your magnesium levels. There is some exciting preliminary research strongly suggesting a decrease in Alzheimer's symptoms with increased levels of magnesium in the brain. Unfortunately, most magnesium supplements do not pass the blood brain levels, but a new one, magnesium threonate, appears to and holds some promise for the future for treating this condition and may be superior to other forms.
  • Eat a nutritious diet, rich in folate. Vegetables, without question, are your best form of folate, and we should all eat plenty of fresh raw veggies every day. Avoid supplements like folic acid, which is the inferior synthetic version of folate.
General Lifestyle Guidelines for Alzheimer's Prevention
Besides diet, there are a number of other lifestyle factors that can contribute to or hinder neurological health. The following strategies are therefore also important for any Alzheimer's prevention plan:
  • Exercise regularly. It's been suggested that exercise can trigger a change in the way the amyloid precursor protein is metabolized,11 thus, slowing down the onset and progression of Alzheimer's. Exercise also increases levels of the protein PGC-1alpha. Exercise also leads to hippocampus growth and memory improvement.12 I would strongly recommend reviewing the Peak Fitness Technique for my specific recommendations.
  • Optimize your vitamin D levels with safe sun exposure.Strong links between low levels of vitamin D in Alzheimer's patients and poor outcomes on cognitive tests have been revealed. Researchers believe that optimal vitamin D levels may enhance the amount of important chemicals in your brain and protect brain cells by increasing the effectiveness of the glial cells in nursing damaged neurons back to health. Vitamin D may also exert some of its beneficial effects on Alzheimer's through its anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties. Sufficient vitamin D (50-70 ng/ml) is imperative for proper functioning of your immune system to combat inflammation that is also associated with Alzheimer's.
  • Avoid and eliminate mercury from your body. Dental amalgam fillings, which are 50 percent mercury by weight, are one of the major sources of heavy metal toxicity, however you should be healthy prior to having them removed. Once you have adjusted to following the diet described in my optimized nutrition plan, you can follow the mercury detox protocol and then find a biological dentist to have your amalgams removed.
  • Avoid and eliminate aluminum from your body. Sources of aluminum include antiperspirants, non-stick cookware, vaccine adjuvants, etc. For tips on how to detox aluminum, please see my article, "First Case Study to Show Direct Link between Alzheimer's and Aluminum Toxicity."
  • Avoid flu vaccinations as most contain both mercury and aluminum, well-known neurotoxic and immunotoxic agents.
  • Avoid anticholinergics and statin drugs. Drugs that block acetylcholine, a nervous system neurotransmitter, have been shown to increase your risk of dementia. These drugs include certain nighttime pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids, certain antidepressants, medications to control incontinence, and certain narcotic pain relievers. Statin drugs are particularly problematic because they suppress the synthesis of cholesterol, deplete your brain of coenzyme Q10 and neurotransmitter precursors, and prevent adequate delivery of essential fatty acids and fat-soluble antioxidants to your brain by inhibiting the production of the indispensable carrier biomolecule known as low-density lipoprotein.
  • Challenge your mind daily. Mental stimulation, especially learning something new, such as learning to play an instrument or a new language, is associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer's. Researchers suspect that mental challenge helps to build up your brain, making it less susceptible to the lesions associated with Alzheimer's disease.
Preventing Alzheimer's Is Possible
According to Dr. David Perlmutter, fat avoidance and carbohydrate overconsumption are at the heart of the Alzheimer's epidemic. To learn more about how you can protect your brain health by eliminating non-vegetable carbs from your diet, I highly recommend reading his book, Grain Brain. In order to reverse the Alzheimer's trend, we simply must relearn how to eat for optimal health. Processed "convenience foods" are quite literally killing us, inducing diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and dementia.
The beauty of following my optimized nutrition plan is that it helps prevent and treat virtually ALL chronic degenerative diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer's. Other lifestyle factors, particularly sun exposure and exercise, are also potent allies against all forms of dementia. Ideally, you'll want to carefully review the suggested guidelines above, and take steps to incorporate as many of them as you can into your daily lifestyle. The sooner you begin, the better, considering that one in nine Americans over the age of 65 end up with Alzheimer's.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Enzyme Therapy for Cancer & Digestive Diseases

Trouble Reading This? - Read it on Dr Sircus' Website

Enzyme Therapy for Cancer & Digestive Diseases

Enzymes are natural proteins that stimulate and accelerate biological reactions in the body. Enzymes, many of which are made in the pancreas, break down food and help with the absorption of nutrients into the blood. Metabolic enzymes build new cells and repair damaged ones in the blood, tissues, and organs. Though the American Cancer Society says that there have been no well-designed studies showing that enzyme supplements are effective in treating cancer we need look no further than the benefit that comes from stimulating and accelerating so many biological reactions.
Most alternative health professionals understand the importance of taking digestive enzymes. This becomes critical for many people as they age. Most people think of enzymes (if they think of them at all) as necessary only for those who deal with digestive problems such as GERD, hiatal hernias, ulcers, etc. Enzymes though are extremely important for treating cancer and should not be overlooked. Enzymes allow one substance to be turned into a different substance and support the pancreas, liver, and immune system’s function.
In the early 1900s Dr. John Beard from England discovered that pancreatic enzymes destroyed cancer cells. In 1911 he tested pancreatic enzymes for stopping cancer in mice and it worked. Decades later Dr. William Donald Kelley, a Texas dentist, read about his work, and cured himself of cancer using pancreatic enzymes and started treating and curing cancer patients using pancreatic enzymes. Dr. Nicholas Gonzales, sent to investigate Dr. Kelley, liked what he saw so much that he, still to this day, treats cancer patients using pancreatic enzymes.
Having cured himself, and with the same therapy, In 1981 Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez, was a second-year medical student at Cornell University Medical College, when he had the opportunity to meet Dr. Kelley, who at that stage had for 20 years been treating cancer patients with complicated nutritional therapy based on Dr. Beard’s enzyme treatment. Dr. Kelley is known for curing more than 33,000 terminal patients of all kinds of cancer without surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. Dr. Gonzalez practices in New York City and is one of the authors of the study, “Pancreatic Enzyme Extract Improves Survival in Murine Pancreatic Cancer” (Pancreas. 2004 May;28(4):401-12).
Dr. Reza Ghaffurian tells the story of Dr. Gonzalez and his research advisor at Cornell, Dr. Robert A Good, President of the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York:
Under Dr. Good’s direction, Gonzalez investigated Kelley’s work during his third and fourth year medical studies. He reviewed almost 10,000 of Kelley’s patient records and interviewed over 500 patients who had been diagnosed with advanced cancer and treated by Kelley. This research allowed Gonzalez to organize Dr Kelley’s findings in an organized manner and pursue this research further for his fellowship training.
The object of the study was to prove Dr. Kelley’s method worked. It took Dr. Gonzalez five years to complete the study, which resulted in a 301-page report that states that the cure rate was 100% for pancreatic cancer and 97% for all other cancers. The report was suppressed. In 1986, due to unrelenting pressure from dis-creditors, Dr. Kelley gave up research and patient care and passed away in January 2005.
The cancer cell is coated and protected by a protein lining (or covering). When this protein covering is removed it leaves the cancer cell exposed and the body’s natural defense. Leukocytes (white blood cells) comes into effect killing the cancer cells. If the body is unable to penetrate and break down the protein coating of the cancer cell then the cells will multiply and spread (metastasize) around the body and various tumors will form as body attempts to isolate the cells from spreading.
But if you are doing chemo and radiation therapy—life- and enzyme-killing treatments—then it is almost fruitless to try to push up your life force with enzymes when all you are doing is destroying your body. The digestive system was designed to process raw food. Raw food, when it is picked ripe, has enzymes in it that help break down that food in the upper stomach where it sits for 30-45 minutes. The enzymes in the food predigest that food. Then the pancreas excretes more enzymes.
With most people’s diets as far away from the raw state as they can get, many biological processes are drastically impeded because of severe shortages of enzymes. Add chemo and radiation and we can easily see one reason things turn out so horribly with orthodox cancer treatments.
Even orthodox oncology is dipping its toes into enzyme therapy when they try to treat pancreatic tumors, one of the deadliest and most drug-resistant forms of cancer. Injecting mice with a molecule that melts the tough structure around the tumor allowed a standard chemotherapy drug to better penetrate and destroy cancer cells. The strategy is already being tested in people. That’s what enzymes do—they melt down things that don’t belong there, including cancer cells. Enzymes are able to touch/ feel/ communicate with the cells they bump against, distinguishing and differentiating between healthy cells and defective or cancerous cells.
The more enzymes present in the body, the greater the chances the immune defense system will be able to identify individual cancer cells. People with an increased risk of cancer could reduce their risk by taking enzymes. Enzyme therapy must be continued indefinitely for the best results. Higher doses of enzymes are needed for individuals who have cancer. And lower doses are required for regular maintenance.
Enzymes are proteins that are required for every single chemical action that takes place in your body. All of your cells, organs, bones, muscles, and tissues are run by enzymes. Your digestive system, immune system, bloodstream, liver, kidneys, spleen, and pancreas, as well as your ability to see, think, feel, and breathe, all depend on enzymes.
All of the minerals and vitamins you eat and all of the hormones your body produces need enzymes in order to work properly. In fact, every single metabolic function—your stamina, your energy level, your ability to utilize vitamins and minerals, your body’s immune system—are all governed by enzymes.
In his book, Enzyme Nutrition, The Food Enzyme Concept, Dr. Edward Howell explains:
When we eat cooked, enzyme-free food, the body is forced to produce enzymes needed for digestion... This “stealing” of enzymes from other parts of the body sets up a competition for enzymes among the various organ systems and tissues of the body. The resulting metabolic dislocations may be the direct cause of cancer, coronary heart disease, diabetes and many chronic incurable diseases.
A person’s life span is directly related to the exhaustion of their enzyme potential. And the use of food enzymes decreases that rate of exhaustion, and thus, results in a longer, healthier, and more vital life.
The Death of Enzymes: Processed & Cooked Food
Processing and cooking food destroys whatever enzymes were originally in the food. (Man is the only animal that cooks his food.) In fact, any sustained heat of approximately 118°-129° F destroys virtually all enzymes. And even though there are some enzymes present in our saliva, the amount used for digesting our food is minuscule since we only chew our food about 25% as much as we should. The result is that most of the food we eat enters our stomach seriously devoid of enzymes.
The food then sits there for an hour, like a heavy lump, with very little pre-digestion taking place. Even after the stomach acid has done its work, the food enters the small intestine largely undigested.
At this point, the pancreas and the other organs of the endocrine system are put under stress with the responsibility of providing the digestive enzymes necessary to make up for what did not take place in the stomach. They have to draw reserves from the entire body in order to produce massive amounts of the proper digestive enzymes.
The less digestion that takes place before food reaches the small intestine the greater the stress placed on the endocrine systems. Recent studies have shown that virtually 100% of all Americans have an enlarged pancreas by the time they’re 40. And there is also research showing that enzyme-deficient diets contribute to a pathological enlargement of the pituitary gland (the gland that regulates all the other glands).
The bottom line: Regular supplementation with digestive enzymes takes stress off the pancreas (and the entire body) by providing the enzymes required for digestion and just may be one of the best insurance policies you can give your body so you can enjoy a long and healthy life.
Immediate Benefits
•     Significant reduction in indigestion and heartburn problems resulting from too much acid in the stomach.
•     Relief from gas and bloating since complex carbohydrates are now being substantially digested before they enter the intestinal tract. (Some people may actually notice an increase in activity, such as stomach growling, for several days as their digestive systems come alive.)
•     Improved digestion of dairy products for anyone who deals with lactose intolerance.
•     Diminished food allergies due to more complete protein digestion.
•     You will experience much less flatulence due to more complete carbohydrate digestion.
•     An increase in energy levels within a few days of enzyme supplementation since the digestion of enzyme-deficient food is an extremely energy-consuming task.
•     Relief from hiatal hernias.
•     Relief from ulcers. (Digestive enzymes help with ulcers in two ways. First, they help digest so much of your meal during the 40-60 minutes of pre-digestion that your body requires less acid in the actual digestion phase. This means that taking digestive enzymes will help lower the levels of acid in your stomach. Those who suffer from chronic low levels of acid need not worry. Digestive enzymes supplements help here too by breaking down so much food in the pre-digestion phase that less acid is actually required. And over time, decreased demand results in increased reserve capability.)
Which Enzymes Should You Use?
The fact is you’ll benefit from any good vegetarian-based digestive enzyme supplement. But look for one that contains:
•     A variety of proteases for digestion of proteins.
•     Carbohydrases (including amylase) – for the digestion of starches and carbohydrates.
•     Lipase – to digest fats.
•     Cellulase – invaluable in breaking down fiber cellulose into smaller units.
•     Lactase – works in the digestion of dairy products.
•     Digestion-stimulating herbs – including ginger, gentian, and caraway seed.
•     In addition, a separate formula (often contained in pancreatic enzyme formulas) should be used containing significant amounts of bromelain – an enzyme that digests protein. Bromelain, which comes from pineapple, burns 900 times its weight in fat. And it is amazingly beneficial for the body as a whole once it gets into the bloodstream, particularly in terms of reducing inflammation and swelling in joints.

The formula I recommend as a digestive aid is Digase, which is an effective and complete enzyme supplement formula. Digase contains a full spectrum of digestive enzymes: proteases (optimized for pHs of 3.0, 4.5, and 6.0), peptidase, lipase, and carbohydrases, including amylase, glucoamylase, invertase (sucrase), maltase, alpha-galactosidase, lactase, phytase, cellulase, and hemicellulase. Any person that has poor digestion, eats lots of cooked foods, is gassy, suffers from irritable bowel or other intestinal dysbiosis should add enzymes to their supplement program.
Another Vitally Important Reason to Supplement Enzymes
Pancreatic enzymes are part of a substance called pancreatin (or pancreas juice) produced in the pancreas. This complex includes the enzymes protease, amylase, and lipase and is released both into the intestines and the bloodstream.
In the intestines, pancreatin works to help digest the proteins, carbohydrates, and starches of our meals. Supplementation with digestive enzymes along with a meal helps share the workload of your body’s own pancreatic enzymes and can aid in digestion (discussed earlier). But what happens if you take enzymes between meals?
As mentioned earlier, pancreatic enzymes are not only released into the small intestine, but also directly into the bloodstream. Why?
Protein molecules that are only partially digested in the small intestine are absorbed into the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, the immune system treats them as invaders provoking an immune reaction. Antibodies couple with these foreign protein invaders to form circulating immune complexes (CICs). Now, in a healthy person, these CICs may be neutralized in the lymphatic system. But if the immune system is in any way compromised, CICs accumulate in the blood where they initiate an “allergic” reaction. As the number of CICs builds, the kidneys max out and can no longer excrete all of the CICs, so they begin to accumulate in the body’s soft tissues, causing inflammation.
It is here that the pancreatic enzymes in our bloodstream come into play. Pancreatic enzymes are able to break down CICs so that they can pass through the kidneys for excretion.
So if enzymes are taken between meals, the body doesn’t need the enzymes for digesting food, so they make their way directly into the bloodstream to aid in the elimination of CICs.
Because of their ability to digest foreign proteins, pancreatic enzymes (both those produced in the body and those absorbed into the bloodstream from taking supplemental digestive enzymes) work to clear out infecting organisms such as viruses, scar tissue, and the products of inflammation. For this reason, pancreatic enzymes are frequently used by Naturopaths to treat a variety of conditions, including lung infections, tooth infections, bone fractures, and as a body strengthener before surgery. Specifically, pancreatic enzymes have been used by many healers to aid in a variety of disease conditions, including inflammation, viral disease, multiple sclerosis, and, of course, cancer.
Note: A dedicated proteolytic enzyme (high-protease) formula will be even more effective in this regard than a digestive enzyme formula forced to do double duty. Ideally, you should use a dedicated digestive enzyme formula with your meals and a dedicated high-protease formula between meals.

I recommend the use of the Prolyt formula as the formula to use inbetween meals for cancer patients and anyone else facing serious chronic disorders. Prolyt contains the proteolytic enzymes bromelain, trypsin (pancreatic enzyme), and chymotrypsin (pancreatic enzyme), and the bioflavonoids turmeric extract (95% curcuminoids), quercetin and oligomeric proanthocyanidins from grape seed extract in a vegetarian capsule.
For cancer treatments we recommend taking the Prolyt formula between meals so that it gets into the body and doesn’t just work on the digestion of foods. We recommend 12-20 capsules daily in dosages of 4 caps/ serving taken 3-5 times daily. Larger amounts can be taken as needed.
On Dr. Hank Lears’ (developer of this formula) site there were these two testimonials I thought were very helpful to read to get some reference point for the far-ranging uses of this type of enzyme formula. “One of my clients told me the story about two old men who loved to play golf but could hardly walk due to arthritis. He said once a week these men would buy a bottle of Prolyt, take a handful of the capsules, and proceed to the golf course out of pain long enough to play golf for the day. A German health practitioner friend of mine told a client of his who was having all of his wisdom teeth removed to take 100 capsules of Prolyt daily after the surgery. His client did it and he found that he not only controlled his pain, but he healed rapidly in less than a week.”
A Note on Ulcers
Digestive enzymes help with ulcers in two ways.
•     First, they help digest so much of your meal during the 40-60 minutes of pre-digestion that your body requires less acid in the actual digestion phase. This means that taking digestive enzymes will help lower the levels of acid in your stomach. (Those who suffer from chronic low levels of acid need not worry. Digestive enzyme supplements help here too by breaking down so much food in the pre-digestion phase that less acid is actually required. And over time, decreased demand results in increased reserve capability.)
•     Second, protease will begin breaking down the protective coating of the H. Pylori bacteria responsible for so many ulcers. In other words, it will actually begin to digest it. This is the prime reason digestive enzyme supplements are so helpful for those who have ulcers.
A cautionary note: There is one concern when using digestive enzymes with ulcers—and that’s if you have a severe existing ulcer. What could happen is that the protease would actually begin to digest severely damaged stomach lining tissue. This can cause noticeable discomfort for several days. To avoid this discomfort, if you have a severe ulcer, start with small amounts of the supplement with your meals and build up slowly.
A person’s life span, in great part, is directly related to the exhaustion of their enzyme-producing potential. The use of food enzymes decreases that rate of exhaustion, and thus, results in a longer, healthier, and more vital life. Magnesium plays are large role in enzyme function and production. "While it was estimated in 1968 that magnesium was a required cofactor for over 300 enzyme systems, that number is now more reliably estimated at 700 to 800,” wrote Dr. Andrea Rosanoff. Intense magnesium therapy, when combined with enzyme therapy will give the body strong energies to move forward with healing of a broad range of disorders.

Dr. Mark Sircus, Ac., OMD, DM (P)
Director International Medical Veritas Association
Doctor of Oriental and Pastoral Medicine

Monday, May 12, 2014

Brussels Sprouts: A Superfood with Cancer-Fighting Potential

Brussels Sprouts: A Superfood with Cancer-Fighting Potential

May 12, 2014 | 14,534 views

By Dr. Mercola
If you’re looking for an extremely nutrient-dense food that’s also tasty and easy to prepare, look no further than Brussels sprouts.
This member of the cruciferous family of vegetables (along with broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, and more) was cultivated in Italy during the reign of Roman emperors and was named for the city of Brussels, Belgium, where it was first referenced in the 1200s.
One cup of cooked Brussels sprouts contains just 56 calories but is packed with more than 240 percent of the recommended daily amount (RDA) for vitamin K1, and nearly 130 percent of the RDA for vitamin C.
Plus, Brussels sprouts are a good source of fiber, manganese, potassium, choline, and B vitamins. They even contain protein. What is perhaps most exciting about Brussels sprouts, however, isn’t only their incredible array of nutrients. It’s their antioxidants and other phytochemicals, which have been proven to fight chronic diseases, including cancer.

Sulfur-Containing Compounds in Brussels Sprouts May Fight Cancer

Brussels sprouts contain sulfur-containing compounds called glucosinolates, which your body uses to make isothiocyanates, which activate cancer-fighting enzyme systems in your body. As reported in the journal Carcinogenesis:1
Glucosinolates are sulfur-containing glycosides found in the Brassica vegetables. Their breakdown products include isothiocyanates, which are produced following exposure to the endogenous plant enzyme myrosinase. Isothiocyanates are pungent, biologically active compounds that suppress carcinogenesis in vivo, and induce apoptosis in vitro.”
Indole-3-carbinol, for example, is one glucosinolate breakdown product that halts the cell cycle in breast cancer cells without actually killing the cells.2 The cell cycle is a rigidly controlled series of steps a cell must go through before it can divide in two, involving the duplication of the cell's contents and a final split.
If you can alter specific components of the cell cycle, you can stop the growth of cancer cells without killing normal cells. Indole-3-carbinol interferes with the cell cycle in a way that turns off a gene for an enzyme important in the cell's growth cycle.
Brussels sprouts have been linked to the prevention of a number of cancers, including colon cancer,3 ovarian cancer,4 and others. One study even found that compounds in Brussels sprouts may trigger pre-cancerous cells to commit suicide, which suggests adding more of this superfood to your diet could be a powerful anti-cancer strategy.5
In fact, in one study, men who ate about 1.5 cups of Brussels sprouts daily for five weeks had a 28 percent decrease in DNA damage, which the researchers concluded showed “that consumption of cruciferous vegetables [Brussels sprouts] may result in a decreased cancer risk.”6
While all of the cruciferous veggies are known for their cancer-fighting powers, Brussels sprouts have been shown to contain even greater amounts of glucosinolates than cabbage, kale, cauliflower, and broccoli.7

Brussels Sprouts Are Detoxification Superstars

What else are Brussels sprouts good for? One of the reasons why Brussels sprouts are so useful for preventing chronic disease is due to its role in your body’s detoxification system. As reported by the George Maateljan Foundation:8
“The detox support provided by Brussels sprouts is both complicated and extensive. First, there is evidence from human studies that enzyme systems in our cells required for detoxification of cancer-causing substances can be activated by compounds made from glucosinolates found in Brussels sprouts.
Second, the body's detox system requires ample supplies of sulfur to work effectively, and Brussels sprouts are rich in sulfur-containing nutrients… Sulfur-containing nutrients help support what is commonly referred to as Phase 2 of detoxification.
Third, our body's detox system needs strong antioxidant support—especially during what is called Phase 1 of detoxification. Brussels sprouts are able to provide that kind of support because they are an excellent source of vitamin C and a very good source of manganese. Brussels sprouts also contain a wide variety of antioxidant phytonutrients, including many antioxidant flavonoids.
Finally, there is evidence that the DNA in our cells is protected by naturally occurring substances in Brussels sprouts, and since many environmental toxins can trigger unwanted change in our DNA, Brussels sprouts can help prevent these toxin-triggered DNA changes.”
What makes eating whole foods like Brussels sprouts even better is that many of the beneficial compounds have multiple uses in your body, and they work synergistically together. Those glucosinolates that help fight cancer and aid in detoxification, for instance? They also offer potent anti-inflammatory properties in your body.

Brussels Sprouts Are Anti-Inflammatory and Powerful Antioxidants

When many people think of antioxidant-rich foods, Brussels sprouts probably donot come to mind… but they should. Not only do Brussels sprouts contain well-known antioxidants like vitamin C, but also others that are much less known – but equally as important, like kaempferol, isorhamnetin, caffeic and ferulic acids, and the relatively rare sulfur-containing compound called D3T (3H-1,2-dithiole-3-thione).
This means that, when you eat Brussels sprouts, you’re helping your body to ward off chronic oxidative stress, which is a major risk factor for many types of cancer and other chronic diseases.
At the same time, Brussels sprouts’ anti-inflammatory compounds will quell chronic inflammation in your body, another risk factor for chronic disease. Remember the indole-3-carbinol (I3C) that I mentioned in regard to breast cancer? I3C is also anti-inflammatory and it operates on a genetic level, helping to prevent inflammatory responses at the very early, initial stages of disease development.9
It’s due to Brussels sprouts’ anti-inflammatory properties that they may also offer benefit for heart problems, including heart attack and atherosclerosis. As the George Maateljan Foundation noted:10
“Of particular interest here has been the isothiocyanate (ITC) sulforaphane, which is made from glucoraphanin (a glucosinolate) found in Brussels sprouts. Not only does this ITC trigger anti-inflammatory activity in our cardiovascular system — it may also be able to help prevent and even possibly help reverse blood vessel damage.”

How to Best Prepare (and Enjoy!) Brussels Sprouts

Adding Brussels sprouts to your regular meal rotation is a good idea, and a tasty one at that because they’re so versatile. You can steam Brussels sprouts and toss them with olive oil, Parmesan cheese, or butter. You can roast them and quarter them, then toss them like a salad with onions, feta cheese, and balsamic vinegar. You can even keep a bowl in the fridge, seasoned with salt and pepper, to snack on throughout the day – their small bite-sized package makes them perfect for popping in your mouth.
Do be careful to avoid overcooking them, which can not only damage some of their nutrients but also alter their taste. If your Brussels sprouts become overly “smelly,” mushy or turn a muted green, they’re probably overcooked. Ideally, they should be bright green with a slightly crisp texture and pleasant, nutty/sweet flavor, even after they’re cooked.

Visit Our Food Facts Library for Empowering Nutrition Information

If you want to learn even more about what's in the food you're eating, visit our Food Facts library. Most people are not aware of the wealth of nutrients available in healthful foods, particularly organic fruits and vegetables. By getting to know your food, you can make informed decisions about how to eat healthier and thereby boost your brain function, lower your risk of chronic disease, lose weight, and much more.
Food Facts is a directory of the most highly recommended health foods to add to your wholesome diet. Its purpose is to provide you with valuable information about various types of foods including recipes to help you maximize these benefits. You'll learn about nutrition facts, scientific studies, and even interesting trivia about each food in the Food Facts library. Remember, knowing what's in your food is the first step to choosing and preparing nutritious meals each and every day. So visit Mercola Food Facts today to get started.