Why Is The Digestive System So Crucial?

I work with lots of clients who come to me with a variety of symptoms and  with almost all of them I recommend digestive system support and they are confused..

Getting folks to realize the road to good health is paved with good intestines… is tricky business.  There are more organs in your digestive system than in any other system in the body.  Up to two-thirds of all your body parts are used just for digesting. You also use up to two-thirds of your daily energy just to complete the process of digesting.  The two things the body expends the MOST energy on is “digesting” and “elimination”.

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The digestive system is complex and intricate, it plays a major role in the health and well being of the body.  It provides the means by which the body transforms the food we eat into energy to feed the “machine”.  It consists of:

  • mouth
  • esophagus
  • stomach
  • small intestine
  • liver
  • pancreas
  • gallbladder

The first stop is what happens in the mouth. When we chew the food the body produces saliva, which comes complete with an enzyme called ptyalin (amylase).  This enzyme helps to start dissolving food making it easier to swallow. Once the food is then swallowed, it travels down the esophagus to the stomach.  The stomach then works like a washing machine churning the food into a pasted referred to as “chyme”.

The stomach uses hydrochloric acid (HCL) which the Adrenal glands contribute to encouraging the stomach to produce, and the enzyme pepsin to begin breaking down proteins.  When we eat something with sugar or drink water, those are absorbed directly into the blood stream while in the stomach.  The food that is not absorbed moves on down the line to the pyloric sphincter which is at the very end of the stomach.  this sphincter serves as the gateway to the small intestine.  When the food eaten has been broken down well enough, it is released into the small intestine, which is made up of three parts:

  • duodenum,
  • jejunum
  • ileum

The small intestine is where the MAJOR digestion and ABSORPTION of nutrients takes place.  These nutrients are then absorbed into the blood stream and some are transported to the liver.

The average peep, eats from 40-50 tons of food in their lifetime… Did you know it takes your mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, gallbladder, pancreas and liver JUST to digest a glass of milk?

Other organs that play a major role in digestion include:

  • pancreas
  • gallbladder
  • liver

The pancreas is a gland located behind the stomach and it manufactures various enzymes and hormones: amylase for breaking down starches, and insulin and glucagon for blood sugar regulation.  These are pumped directly into the duodenum.  A duct also connects the duodenum to our gallbladder.  This pear shaped sac squeezers out bile, which bile is basically our body’s version of a detergent agent that contains acids that dissolves fats.

Our liver is the largest organ in the body, and the body’s main chemical factory.  It performs more than 500 different functions.  Besides producing bile, the liver:

  1. processes nutrients
  2. converts dietary proteins into new protein needs for the blood system
  3. stores fats, carbohydrates, proteins and vitamins
  4. releases proteins, carbohydrates & vitamins as needed
  5. absorbs poisons and toxic substances before neutralizing them

Once the food makes it past the small intestine, any remaining matter is then passed into the cecum, which is the beginning of the large intestine, or colon.  It is in the large intestine that fecal matter is formed.  Water is reabsorbed, B-vitamins are absorbed, and the matter itself is moved along through the rest of the colon.  The large intestine ends at the rectum and anus.

The length of the digestive tract is some 30 feet.  There is about 25 feet of small intestines and about 5 feet of large intestine.

There is a major purpose for the digestive system and it revolves around “CHANGE”.  The digestive system changes carbohydrates into simple carbohydrates or sugars.  It changes proteins into smaller molecules called amino acids which are building blocks for our body.  It changes fats into fatty acids/glycerin.  Whole foods are changed into usable forms called nutrients, which are directly absorbed into our blood stream.  It is often said, “You are what you eat,” but I say “You are what you are able to absorb!”

DID YOU KNOW?  

  1. The liver can function even if as much as 90% of it is removed
  2. after you eat, it usually takes 24 hours in healthy adults to complete the  process of digestion

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WHAT ARE SOME PRIMARY PROBLEMS and INADEQUACIES  WITH THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM?

#1. TRANSIT TIME:

One of the most common issues associated with the digestive system is transit time.  Transit time is a measure used to denote how long it takes for food to be broken down and roll through the 30 foot system from end to end.  Normally, it is about 24 hours, it takes around 3-6 hours for a meal just to be converted to nutrients.  Problems occur when transit time is either too slow or too fast.

Muscles all along the digestive tract contract in an action called peristalsis which is what propels the food through the process.  These propulsive waves also force waste to move into the rectum for elimination.  This should happen from 3-4 times a day…. (HOW MANY TIMES ARE YOUR BOWELS MOVING?)…I always say “think babies and puppies”. Typically they have to eliminate shortly after eating.  Usually once most of us hit our late teens and I’m seeing this much sooner now in my practice, that we no longer eliminate like babies/puppies… Folks are lucky if they have a bowel movement once a day.  So now think about the fact that the digestive system can only process 3-4 meals a day!  So when you eat the next meal the very 1st one should be ready for exit.

I frequently tell my patients that if they are only having one bowel movement a day they ARE constipated.  I hear over and over again.. but one bowel movement a day is what is “Normal” for me… But this is NOT the case if you have more than one meal a day!  Folks, our current health system deals mostly with drugs & surgery.  They tend to prescribe laxatives that can be habit forming and fibers that contain food dyes known to be carcinogens.  If we have digestive issues, it is also common to use antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, antacids, steroids, and/or intestinal removal.  What we really need is a better understanding of how the digestive system functions, and how We can care for it naturally.

TEST YOUR TRANSIT TIME: drink just beet juice or liquid chlorophyll. after you drink it, it should take about 24 hrs. to see red coloring in your stool.  If your red transit time is too fast like 12 hours, you are eliminating too fast and not absorbing all your nutrients  if it is too slow, say 48 hours, your constipated and leading to toxicity.

#2. INADEQUATE ENZYMES

Food has to be properly digested to allow absorption.  This only happens with the help of enzymes.  without digestive enzymes, which speed up the digestive process food would take the same amount of time to digest as it does when rotting in warm open air.  By design, we do have sufficient enzymes to ensure digestion. but what is not generally known is that today our enzymes have to combat shelf-life food.  Modern foods did not exist when our Creator originally figured out our lifetime supply of enzymes.

Foods today are processed, boxed, canned refined, heat treated, pasteurized, radiated, microwaved, and packaged.  Our enzymes were designed for food that is fresh, partially digested by nature, and alive.  That does not describe shelf-life foods.  Preservatives, chemicals, additives, and heat also destroy any additional natural enzymes present within food, not to mention the natural enzymes we were born with.

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DID YOU KNOW?

  • The lining of the stomach has 35 million tiny glands that pour out two to three quarts of gastric juice daily?  When food is introduced the juice flows faster.

Enzymes are also needed for detoxification. They turn fat-soluble materials and waste into water for easier elimination.  We see that fewer enzymes equals more toxicity.  Enzymes help ensure the removal of harmful allergens, pollution, heavy metals and toxins from the body.  Enzymes also maintain a normal pH level in the digestive system, which is critical in reducing inflammation.

 

#3. LACKING SYSTEM PROBIOTICS

We are hearing more and more about the need for probiotics. They are similar to enzymes, our body produces and needs friendly bacteria. They participate in digestion and absorption. They stand guard to also do battle in our defense against harmful organisms from making our digestive system their home.  Probiotics even help supplement our diet by manufacturing vitamins and providing immunity.

 

Probiotics are found in both the small and large intestines.  But the colon contains the majority of these friendly buggers.  A normal peep should have about 1000 trillion of these good buggers in the intestine.  They can even account for 10% of total body weight!  The most familiar strains are:

  • lactobacillus acidophilus
  • bifidobacterium longum (acidophilus & bifidophilus)

They have some specific jobs to perform and those would be:

  1. producing additional enzymes
  2. producing antibiotic substances to fight bacteria bad guys
  3. forming B-vitamins
  4. reducing liver stress
  5. preventing constipation
  6. boosting immune system

What is happening is many are functioning with a very reduced population of beneficial probiotic colonies in their gut due to the over use of antibiotics (which our commercial meats are loaded with), chemical exposure, and overly processed fast/boxed/microwaved foods.  Which is why EVERYONE would benefit by supplementing daily with probiotics.

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#4

HIATAL HERNIA

Many are misdiagnosed with digestive symptoms with something called a hiatus.  The diaphragm, which is our breathing muscle separates the chest from our abdomen, contains an opening called the hiatus.  This is where the esophagus passes through to reach the stomach.  Occasionally part of the stomach protrudes through the hiatus, creating a hernia that permits the black-flow of acid or chyme up in to the esophagus, or we call it acid reflux disease.  Doctors can confuse heart disease or ulcers with a hiatus hernia because the symptoms are very similar.  Sometimes they simply trat the issue with antacids.  A hiatus hernia can cause great pain, difficult breathing, heartburn, etc.

#5. HYDROCHOLORIC ACID (HCL) IMBALANCE

We have been fed that stomach acid is bad, if you take a look the antacid industry has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry.  Although antacids can be helpful, they are not the answer for what causes heartburn or indigestion in the first place.  Stomach acid, or hydrochloric acid, breaks down protein ad fights off microbes.  It stimulates the pancreas and small intestines to produce additional enzymes, as well as bile.  The truth is that treatment aimed at neutralizing stomach acid can actually make your digestive issues worse not better.  The other connecting factor is most are also dealing with adrenal fatigue issues too, and the adrenal glands also participate in sending proper signal to the stomach for proper HCL production.  So it’s usually a two-fold issue happening.  Which is why when someone is dealing with major stress issues, the digestion is affected.

DID YOU KNOW? The small intestine can be likened to a second brain.  It contains as many neurons as your spinal column, and 95% of your serotonin which is the brain’s mood regulating chemical is contained in your small intestines, elaborate network of nerves.  That’s why we feel strong emotions like fear, love and anticipation in the gut as well as our minds.  The intestines can also be affected in the same way that the brain is from lack of serotonin.  Inadequate serotonin in the bran can cause depression; in the gut, it can lead to irritable bowel syndrome.

Many are fearful when I recommend they need to take a HCL + pepsin supplement for reflux or bloating issues after they eat.  They are afraid it will contribute to more burning, Yet the stomach has a mucus lining which forms a barrier between the stomach wall and the acid produced.  This is natures’ ways of protecting the stomach from the strength of its contents.  The lining of the stomach sheds cells at the rate of half a million every minute  They are replaced so rapidly that the stomach has what amounts to a new lining every three days.

The question we should be asking… should we be trying to stop HCL production with antacids?  As we get older, (usually after age 40), we tend to make less HCL anyway.  Add to that a poor diet, overeating, and inhaling your food, and you may find you have digestive and immune issues.  Low levels of stomach acid can produce protein malnourishment.  This leads to acidic blood (a pH imbalance), setting the stage for toxins, illness, and disease.  It can also lead to mineral deficiencies.  As the blood becomes acidic, your blood will look for minerals anywhere in the body to counter the pH issues.  It will even steal the mineral calcium from the bones, which contributes to osteoporosis.  and when do most folks notice osteoporosis or osteopenia is an issue?…. over the age of 40!

 

Here is a basic equation for this type of digestive issues:  low stomach acid= acidic blood=low minerals.  Symptoms of this cycle looks like these symptoms:

  • bloating
  • flatulence
  • heart burn
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • acne
  • chronic candida
  • food allergies
  • immune problems

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WHAT DOES “NATURAL’ SUPPORT OF YOUR DIGESTIVE SYSTEM LOOK LIKE?

For optimum health, the digestive system requires:

  1. improved diet
  2. exercise
  3. plenty of clean water
  4. fiber
  5. detoxification
  6. and boosting the nutritional deficiencies with supplementation

DIET: this area is where most folks miss the mark in a major way.  Properly balancing what you are eating is important. It doesn’t mean you can’t ever eat out, or have a piece of cake etc. It means those choices should be occasional not habitual.  The body needs clean proteins, carbohydrates and fats.  so fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains ad seeds have to be included in the mix.

Proteins need to be lean, clean and high quality.  Carbohydrates are better when they are complex vs. simple.  Fats should be unsaturated and essential fatty acid choices.  Which fall into the Omega 3,6,9 categories.

  • flaxseed
  • fish oil
  • avocadoes
  • black currant oil
  • borage oil
  • greens
  • nuts seeds

All have Essential fatty acid elements.

We also have the most amazing tool to aid in digestion that is both powerful and inexpensive, that would be our TEETH… most folks fall into the WOLF my food category, they chew what they are eating maybe 5-10 times as virtually swallow the rest whole.  You want to concur over eating?  Take the time to chew 25 times before swallowing, I don’t expect you to physically count your chews, but use your tongue and feel what is in your mouth, if you cannot feel chunks, then swallow.  You will thank yourself with better digestion, and you will end up eating less.  It takes approx. 25 minutes for the Vagus nerve to send signal to the brain that you are full.  So the longer you take chewing and swallowing you will find you end up eating less.

 

EXERCISE:  This is a touchy subject for lots of folks.  Yet the truth of the matter is we spend more time sitting than any of us care to admit.  We sit while driving, while watching TV, while we are on our computers, Cell phones etc.  Exercise of ANY kind is beneficial to assisting the peristalsis and improving the muscular integrity of your abdomen.  The body is designed to move, we have lots of “hinged” body parts for that very reason.

WATER:  o avoid being constipated, we have to properly hydrated.  Many people believe they drink plenty of water throughout the day, but they ignore some elements they may be also doing that naturally dehydrates the body, like coffee, alcohol and carbonated drinks.  So for every cup of those you drink you need to add an additional cup of water to compensate.

FIBER: It is a proven fact with todays standard go to diet choices that people are not coming close to getting near enough fiber in their diet.  supplementing with fiber is highly recommended.  There are five kinds of fiber:

3 soluble fibers:

  1. pectin
  2. mucilage
  3. gum (not chewing gum by the way)

2 insoluble fibers:

  1. cellulose
  2. hemi cellulose

Introducing dietary fiber through supplementation is highly recommended but to add gradually and it’s important that you are drinking enough water at same time.

DID YOU KNOW?

The average person carries between 5 – 25 pounds of undigested fecal matter in their bowels at all times.  It contributes to the “pouch” look that most of us don’t want to have.

AND…

Heartburn is not the result of excessive stomach acid; it is the result of not enough!

BENEFITS OF ADDING FIBER:

  • causes us to feel full
  • decreases appetite
  • helps with weight-loss
  • eases/speeds bowel movements
  • reduces bad cholesterol
  • delays blood sugar absorption
  • grabs onto toxins
  • sweeps feces out of the body
  • lowers chance of colon cancer and hemorrhoids.

DETOXIFICATION:

The cleansing or purging of the intestines or detoxification actually dates back to Egypt.  The Greeks also used it, as did the American Indians.  Detoxification has been around for ages.  But never has it become more important in our history than it is right now./  Foods have become denatures, devoid of enzymes, overly sugared, and just plain poisoned.  As food and water are steadily more toxic, our digestive systems are becoming  more overloaded.  The need for detoxification of the digestive system is paramount.  The number one reason today for most doctor visits is for digestive issues.

PRODUCT RECOMMENDATIONS:  In my practice I have like any practitioner my “favorite” go to products.  I’ve listed links to those products below.

Digestive System Pack (30 day supply):

Benefits:
Supports healthy digestion by breaking down all types of food.
May promote immune system health.
Supplies friendly bacteria to help rebalance the population of flora in the gut.
Aids in the elimination of toxins.
How It Works:
Proactazyme facilitates digestion and improves nutrient absorption. Anti-Gas TCM supports both the digestive and detoxifying functions of the body and supports the natural elimination of excess moisture and toxins. Bacillus Coagulans is a self-stable probiotic that is blended with prebiotics conducive to the growth of friendly bacteria.
Ingredients:
Each AM packet contains 3 Proactazyme capsules. Each PM packet contains 1 Anti-Gas TCM and 2 Bacillus Coagulans capsules.
Recommended Use:
Take the contents of one AM packet throughout the day before meals (one capsule before each meal). Take the contents of the evening packet with your evening meal. Follow this pattern for 30 days.

FOOD ENZYMES:   (these are on special the rest of this week)

Benefits:
Supplements the body’s production of important enzymes.
Provides a blend of enzymes to digest proteins, carbohydrates and fats.
Provides hydrochloric acid and bile salts to help digest proteins and fats.
Helps relieve occasional indigestion.
How It Works:
Enzymes break down food into compounds for absorption into the bloodstream. This combination of enzymes offers more complete digestive support when taken with meals. This formula includes pepsin, which is used for pre-digesting proteins in the stomach. Betaine HCl helps create an acidic environment to facilitate the activity of pepsin. After food reaches the small intestine, the enzyme pancreatin further digests protein, carbohydrates and fats in the small intestine. Pancreatin also helps to support the pancreas. Alpha amylase digests starches. Bile salt makes fats soluble, preparing them for further digestion by lipase. The enzymes bromelain and papain aid in the digestion of proteins. One capsule will help you digest a minimum of 30 grams of protein, 30 grams of carbohydrates and 20 grams of fats.
Ingredients:
Betaine HCl, bile salt, bromelain, lipase, alpha amylase, pancreatin, papain and pepsin.

NATURES THREE:

Benefits:
Provides intestinal systems support.
Provides naturally occurring fiber from psyllium hulls.
Promotes regularity in maintaining healthy bowel movements.
Relieves occasional constipation.
How It Works:
There are two basic types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber, found in foods such as fruits, seeds, brown rice, barley and oats works mainly by helping to produce a softer stool. It also chemically prevents or reduces the absorption of certain substances into the bloodstream. Insoluble fiber, found in whole grains, vegetables, legumes and the outside of seeds, works like a sponge, absorbing many times its weight in water and swelling up inside the intestines. The result is elimination that is more efficient.
Nature’s Three provides: Psyllium which has the highest level of soluble fiber known—more than eight times that of oat bran. Oat fiber –a wholesome source of water-soluble fiber. Apple fiber – provides a host of health benefits. Each 10-calorie serving provides 2 g of dietary fiber.

Ingredients:
Psyllium seed hulls, apple fruit fiber and oat inner husk bran.

CLEAN START DETOXIFYING MILD PROGRAM (14 DAY):

Benefits:
Supports the natural, everyday cleansing of waste from the body.
Gently moves intestinal contents through the digestive system.
May help to maintain natural energy levels.
Promotes a feeling of well-being.
How It Works:
Environmental pollutants can build up in the body, slowing natural cleansing and detoxifying processes. CleanStart® is our most popular cleanse to help support the primary detoxifying processes of the body. This flagship product is available in a mild formula for those seeking complete yet gentle cleansing support. CleanStart Mild contains Bacillus coagulans to support the friendly bacteria in the intestinal tract. Use CleanStart Mild to help “jump start” your cleansing and detoxifying program. After cleansing, try Detox Basics™ daily detoxifying program for ongoing detoxification support.
Ingredients:
Each Cleansing Drink Mix packet contains psyllium hulls, vegetable fiber, natural wild berry flavor, potassium citrate, aloe vera whole leaf, malic acid, carotene extract, stevia leaf extract, sodium copper chlorophyllin, bentonite. Each capsule pack contains 3 capsules of Gentle Move® and 1 capsule of Enviro-Detox™.
Recommended Use:
Take contents of one cleansing drink mix packet 15-30 minutes before breakfast and 15-30 minutes before dinner. Take contents of capsule packet with breakfast and dinner (twice daily).

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If you’d like a personalized nutritional program put together for you and your health needs.  You can go to http://www.jodibarnett758.com and click on the services tab, when you click on a specific service it will take you to the shopping cart to pay for your services and we can get you on my appointment schedule.   You can also click on the “products” tab and it will take you to over 500 + products that as a practitioner I use and recommend in my practice.

Thank you for taking the time to read, like and share my posts.

Healthfully yours,

Dr. Jodi Barnett N.D.

Harvested Health LLC

 

 

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You Are NOT What You Eat, You ARE What You Can Digest!

intestines

 

Digestive enzymes enable food’s incredible journey through the body—giving us strength and energy to recharge and live a healthy life. Digestive enzymes act as catalysts as they break down food and make it possible for the body to absorb nutrients and eliminate waste. Although the digestive system is a powerful one, it’s also very delicate.

Taking care of your digestive tract by keeping it clean and providing what it needs plays a major role in the body’s overall health.Many fruits and vegetables contain digestive enzymes. Such enzymes are also beneficial for breaking down proteins and meats.

Today’s diet lacks many of the food-derived digestive enzymes the body needs. This is because cooking, freezing, processing, canning and other food preparation methods kill or significantly deteriorate the strength of food enzymes. Once food is broken down, it passes through the small intestine where the body separates the nutrients from the waste. In many cases, the small intestine suffers from toxic build-up, diminishing the effectiveness of nutrient absorption. Finding a natural colon detoxifier can help recharge your digestive system and relieve it from harmful build-up.

Clean Start one of our best-selling natural body cleanse products, contains nine botanicals that pull toxins from the intestine walls and allow for healthy waste removal.

Benefits:
Supports the natural, everyday cleansing of toxic waste from the body.
Works without posing dangerous side effects.
Improves energy and promotes a feeling of well-being.
How It Works:

Clean Start is a two-week program that supports natural waste elimination to provide a sense of improved energy and well-being. It contains powerful nutrients that help cleanse and detoxify the body.
Psyllium hulls provide fiber and absorb bowel toxins. In fact, the program delivers 10 grams of fiber per day to promote waste removal.

Highly absorbent bentonite clay is often used to support colon health. Aloe vera juice soothes bowel tissue.

Chlorophyll helps prevent odor and counteracts bowel toxins. Stevia herb contains stevioside, a natural constituent that is 300 times sweeter than sugar (sucrose).

Enviro-Detox cleanses the body of many common environmental pollutants.

The formulation includes burdock root, dandelion root, fenugreek seed, ginger rhizome, pepsin, red clover flowers, yellow dock root, marshmallow root extract, sarsaparilla root extract, Bacillus coagulans, cascara sagrada bark, echinacea root extract and milk thistle seed extract.

LBS II combines strong, purgative herbs and protective, gentle and soothing herbs to enhance elimination, increase production of digestive enzymes and soothe the digestive tract. LBS II contains cascara sagrada bark, buckthorn bark, licorice root, capsicum fruit, ginger rhizome, Oregon grape root and rhizome, Turkey rhubarb root, couch grass rhizome and red clover flowers.

Ingredients:
Each drink packet contains psyllium hulls, vegetable fiber, natural apple-cinnamon or wild berry (black currant and raspberry) flavor, potassium citrate, aloe vera inner leaf, malic acid, carrot root extract, stevia leaf extract, sodium copper chlorophyllin and hydrated bentonite. Each capsule pack contains 2 capsules of LBS II and 1 capsule of Enviro-Detox.
Recommended Use:

Take the contents of one cleanse drink packet 15–30 minutes before breakfast and again 15–30 minutes before dinner. Take the contents of 1 capsule packet with breakfast and dinner (twice daily). Mix cleanse packet powder in 8 oz. juice or water. Shake, blend or stir vigorously. Drink immediately. Drink an additional glass of water immediately following this. Drink plenty of water throughout the day.

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DIGESTIVE TRACK:

When the digestive tract lacks necessary digestive enzymes and harbors toxic build-up, the abdomen feels uncomfortable, stressed and bloated.

If you suffer from occasional digestive disturbances, consider your diet. Are you providing your body the necessary food enzymes for healthy digestion? Could your digestive tract suffer from toxic build-up?

Try taking one or two capsules of our digestive enzyme supplements (Food Enzymes or Proactazyme) with each meal, clean your digestive tract with a healthy, natural colon cleanse (CleanStart) and notice the difference!

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FINDING HEALTH WITH ENZYMES!

What are enzymes? They are said to be the “powerhouse” of every cell in the body. Intertwined with nearly every system in the body, digestive enzymes determine how effectively the body breaks down food. The body can’t function without them. We are born with some digestive enzymes. However, these alone cannot sufficiently break down all of the food that we eat. The body can produce and replenish enzymes; but still it needs more from outside sources. Natural, raw foods have enzymes in them that are designed to assist with the break down of the foods eaten. These are the same molecules that make fruit ripen and then eventually rot.

However, today’s food preparation processes can kill these enzymes, making digestion difficult on the body. If you cook, freeze, dry or can your food, you’ll most likely kill the enzymes your body needs for healthy digestion. As most of today’s diets include some form of processed food, it’s likely that you have an insufficient level of digestive enzymes.

This causes stress on the digestive system, which can lead to indigestion, heartburn, bloating and more. Moreover, digestive stress can affect how many nutrients your body is able to absorb. Often, those with symptoms of digestive stress have a weakened immune system.

Since it’s nearly impossible to maintain a diet of just raw, natural foods, it’s important to supply your body with the essential digestive enzymes it needs. It’s easy to do so with a safe, healthful digestive enzyme supplement that will help you feel better as you find greater health.

So many peeps are walking around in misery, they are bloated, suffering with constipation or IBS, GERD, Acid reflux, heartburn because they are dealing with incomplete digestion and improper food combination.  Most folks are not eating near enough fresh foods ( i.e. fruits and veggies); the majority subsist on over-cooked meats, potatoes, breads, gravy’s, sauces, dead foods like cereals, chips muffins etc.

Support a tired digestive system and realize it goes way beyond the old saying “You are what you eat”, to “You ARE what you can digest!”

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* Food Enzymes* Clean Start (body/colon cleanse kit)*Proactazyme

These products can be purchased through my  website at http://www.mynsp.com/harvestedhealth (if your 1st order totals $40.00 your yearly membership fee is waived and you are able to purchase your products at wholesale prices, sign up for Sunshine Rewards program and have the option of receiving your orders with FREE shipping AND earn cash back points to use as cash on other orders)

You will find details on my products website.

Healthfully yours,

Dr. Jodi Barnett N.D.

QFA Clinician, Gaps Diet Practitioner,

Orthomolecular Nutrition Practitioner,

Harvested Health LLC

http://mkt.com/harvested-health-llc

http://www.mynsp.com/harvestedhealth

http://www.jodibarnett758.com


Differences Between Vinegars!

Let’s talk about Vinegar!
I’ve spoken before about how Vinegar can be “unhealthy”, but my reference being towards “white distilled” and to wine vinegars, in which the destructive nature comes from ACETIC ACID, which both distilled and wine vinegars have.

white vinegar wine vinegar and apple cider vinegar

 
PURE ACV (apple cider vinegar), on the other hand, made from whole apples and NOT diluted, contains the constructive MALIC ACID, which benefits the digestive system, and can be constructive in softening kidney/gall stones.

chemistry malic acid Chemistry of Malic Acid has 4 Carbon bonds, 6 Hydrogen bonds, and 5 Oxygen bonds!

White Distilled Vinegar rapidly destroys red blood corpuscles which contributes to anemia. It also interferes with the digestive processes.red corpuscles Healthy Red Corpuscles vs. damaged!

 

Distilled Vinegar is the product of fermentation by acidity of alcoholic fluids like fermented wine and malt liquors; these are known as wine vinegars and malt vinegars. The white distilled which carries a high acetic acid content is used a lot in our Country. The only thing I find it good for is using as a cleaning agent for the home.

But vinegar made from apples (ACV) contains MALIC ACID which is a natural element involved in the digestive process.

Vinegars made by fermentation of wine contains an average of from 3% to 9% Acetic Acid, and usually some Tartaric Acid too. Acetic acid has been connected to contribute in hardening of the liver (cirrhosis) and duodenal and intestinal ulcers.

liverHere’s the comparison between a Health, fatty & a Liver with Cirrhosis!

APPLE CIDER VINEGAR, on the other hand, contains Malic Acid, which is a constructive acid that combines with alkaline elements and minerals in the body to produce energy or to be stored in the system as glycogen for future use.

It helps in the coagulation of blood in establishing a normal menstrual flow, and contributes to  healthy blood vessels, veins and arteries, and the building of red blood.

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MINERAL BALANCE

One of the great virtues of ACV is its extraordinary potassium content, a must have for building and storing body reserves which contributes toward achieving harmony and calm. This potassium readily associates with some of the most important elements in the body, like calcium, sodium, iron, magnesium, chlorine, and silicon.

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FILTERED ACV

Its important, when choosing ACV, to consider the source, making sure its made from whole apples and not the cheap stuff made just from apple cores and peelings. Whole Raw apple cider vinegar with the “mother” which should look cloudy in appearance and a nice dark amber color. Will also have sediment and stuff floating in the bottom of the bottle! Also, never buy it in plastic containers, always choose one that is in a glass container.

Everyone should have a bottle of this stuff at home, its indispensable. It carries antiseptic qualities, works great as a skin toner, diluted with water and applied with a cotton ball directly to the skin.

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VARICOSE VEINS

Years ago in Scotland it was used and maybe it still is common practice to shrink varicose and “bulging” veins by the application of ACV on the skin to the whole length of the veins, morning and night, for a month or so, and at the same time drinking daily; two or three glasses of water with 2 teaspoons of ACV in each glass. And it worked!

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CLEAN BLOOD

Your LIFE is manifested in the condition of your blood which is generated in the marrow of your bones, activated through your spleen and circulated through your blood vessels.  It is a natural, systematic process that causes the blood stream to be completely recreated every period of 28 days, and unless the balance is maintained between the creation of new blood cells while the old blood cells complete their cycle, health cant be maintained.

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EXCESSIVE BLEEDING

Excessive bleeding with menstrual cycles, bleeding hemorrhoids, nose bleeds, cuts, etc., can also show signs of improvement by drinking 2 teaspoons of ACV in a glass of water daily and two or three times a day if necessary!

When our digestive system fails to digest proteins, it is a result of being deficient in hydrochloric acid.  This can, as a result, give rise to high blood pressure.  So consequentially one to three teaspoons of ACV in a glass of water, taken in the middle of the meal can  improve protein digestion and assist in balancing blood pressure.

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Hope you found this helpful…

Healthfully yours,

Dr. Jodi Barnett N.D.

Orthomolecular Nutritionist

QFA Clinician

Harvested Health LLC

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References:

Dr. Norman W. Walker D. Sc. “What’s  Missing in your body?”

 


Why Not Store bought Juices?

Fruits and VegetablesWhen I’m working with my patient’s, part of my nutritional recommendations will ALWAYS include fresh “homemade” juices vs. store bought ones.  Many sigh and give me the eye-roll, but let me tell you there is nothing like making fresh raw veggie or fruit juices at home with your own juicer.

I KNOW juicing takes time, energy and a commitment to the routine. But let’s face it… IF you want to be healthier and feel better, why would you think that requires no “commitment, time or energy” to make that a reality?

It’s easy with advertising to fall into the fog of belief that the availability and variety of store-bought juices that are taking up so much space in our grocery stores, even in the coolers at gas stations and convenient stores are tempting.  This market is exploding and it tempts us because it’s convenient, but folks it’s truly unreliable marketing, and they are using pseudo-healthy buzzwords.  So here’s the scoop on how to understand the juice labels at the grocery store and choose the best store-bought juices for you and your family.

(I highly recommend you purchase the book “The Food Babe Way” by Vani Hari she has been beyond dedicated to empowering folks with the knowledge of what is hidden in the foods folks are eating)

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When you see “100% Juice”, let me state those words mean NOTHING… Food companies are allowed to say “100% Juice” on the label even when the juice contains additives, flavorings or preservatives.

Concentrate” is really just a fancy name for syrup:  Juice concentrates are made from fruits & vegetables that are heated down to a syrup and then have added water.  The concentration process involves both the addition and subtraction of chemicals and natural plant by-products in order to condense the juice.  During concentration, fruits and vegetables lose flavor.  This is WHY companies then have to ADD flavorings back in to give the juice a fresh taste.

“Not from concentrate” could mean flavored:  According to the book Squeezed:  What you Don’t Know about Orange Juice, by Alissa Hamilton, companies store orange juice in giant tanks and extract the oxygen from them.  This then preserves the liquid and prevents it from spoiling for up to a year!  However, this storage system causes the orange juice to lose all of its flavor.  So the industry uses” Flavor packs” to re-flavor the juice, (does this sound as gross to you as it does to me?)

GMO’S:  I have had folks message me and tell me… “I’m so sick of hearing about GMO’s already”, well Genetically Modified foods ARE “impostors”, foods that have been grown after the seeds have been modified in a laboratory.  They are not what God gave us.  I’m going to continue to push this envelop and YOU should too, our cries keep falling upon deaf ears, however, where your voice will speak the loudest is through your SPENDING power, STOP buying what they are selling…. Many juice companies use citric acid to extend the shelf life of their product.  You would think citric acid comes from citrus, like Lemons, oranges, and limes, BUT it doesn’t.  Most food manufacturers use genetically engineered corn and sugar beets to create citric acid, by synthetically fermenting the glucose from these crops in a lab.  And some juice companies go as far as adding sugar (which could be from GMO sugar beets), high-fructose corn syrup (from GMO corn), and other ingredients that could contain GMOs.

Synthetic ingredients:  The sneakiest ingredients lurking in juice come in the form of synthetics made in a lab.  These include Fibersol-2 (a proprietary synthetic digestion-resistant fiber), frutooligosaccharides (synthetic fibers and sweeteners), and inulin (an artificial and invisible fiber that’s added to foods to increase fiber content).  Avoid synthetic ingredients in your diet, because they’re usually made from petroleum, coal, and DMOs, none of which offer any beneficial nutrients.

Pasteurization:   This very process KILLS all raw enzymes, minerals and vitamins, which means it kills off our reasons for drinking the juice in the first place.  Heat kills bad stuff and the good stuff, making the juice pretty much worthless.  Juice companies sometimes even replenish the lost vitamin content with synthetic vitamins because there is barely any nutrition left after they process.  Furthermore, most companies create vitamins through chemical manipulation and synthesis, not from actual fruits and vegetables.

CHOOSE THE best STORE-BOUGHT JUICE

I intentionally chose NOT to put the word “best” in lower case letters in this caption, because freshly juiced is always going to be the BEST.  But now that I’ve pointed out commercial juices empty contribution to the nutritional input.  Here are some juice choices that offer some better options IF you are going to spend your money on store bought juices.

Best: Fresh Raw Organic:

  • Suja juice
  • Suja Elements
  • Juice Press
  • Organic Avenue
  • Luna’s Living Kitchen
  • Viva Raw
  • TumericALIVE
  • Blue Print

Better: 100% Organic, Not from Concentrate

  • Uncle Matt’s Organic
  • 365 Everyday Value
  • Lakewood
  • Bolthouse Farms

Questionable: Organic, but from Concentrate or with Additives

  • Santa Cruz Organic
  • Honest Kids
  • Purity

Worst: Nonorganic, Pasteurized

  • V8
  • Naked Juice
  • Zico
  • POM Wonderful
  • Simply Orange
  • Tropicana
  • Ocean Spray
  • Minute Maid
  • Mott’s
  • Del Monte
  • Welch’s

WHAT EQUIPMENT DO I NEED TO MAKE MY OWN FRESH JUICES FROM HOME?

 There are a wide variety of different juicers for sale and with these choices there is a varied price point as well.  Some juicers are easier to clean than others, and some are made with higher quality workmanship than others.  Over the years I’ve used more than my fair share of juicers.  I’m offering a list below starting with MY personal/professional favorite.

RECOMMENDED JUICERS:

CHAMPION JUICER:  This is super easy to clean, it’s a masticating juicer that grinds the vegetables against a filter, rather than working as a centrifuge, it also offers you to make your own fresh nut butters, fresh baby foods, even fresh frozen fruit sorbets.

Price point for this machine is “UNDER” $300

BREVILLE JUICER: This offers a stainless steel centrifuge that spins the vegetables until they separate into juice and pulp.  It’s a bit more of a challenge to clean after using and I felt the noise factor was louder than I was comfortable with.  But it’s a good juicer that gets the job done.

Price point for this machine is “UNDER $300”

JACK LALANNE JUICER: This was one of my 1st juicers, its a centrifuge juicer.  It’s lower in price than most centrifuge juicers, it’s by far one of the harder ones to clean, but for those on a budget, it offers a nice affordable price point to get you going with preparing healthy home-made fresh juices for you and your family.

Price point for this machine is “UNDER $150”

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I encourage my patient’s to DRINK their juices on an empty stomach.  You don’t want to have the juices AFTER you have just eaten your meal.  You are lowering the benefit of drinking the juice and some experience some digestive issues like bloating, or even heartburn as a result.  The benefit of drinking your fresh juices on an empty stomach is because it allows the nutrients in the juice to go straight to your blood.  Having a meal already in your stomach is going to prevent this fast absorption from happening.  So IF you have already eaten a mean, wait a couple of hours to drink the juice.  If you ARE drinking your juice on an empty stomach as I recommend, wait about 20 mins. to down your breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Also, I’d like to add that NOT all produce is meant to be combined when it comes to juicing.  This is NOT the place to toss everything but the kitchen sink into the recipe because hey it’s produce and it’s healthy.  Digestion still needs to occur and some of the naturally occurring enzymes that are in various types of produce are NOT meant to be combined!

So with your greens, it’s fine to juice an apple in with those to add a bit of sweetness to the juice.  BUT any of your melons you choose to juice (which are delicious juiced), should be juiced “ALONE”, you can combine any of the MELONS together in a juice, but their enzymes are delicate and the body digests them quickly,  Ever notice that when you choose to eat watermelon as a dessert after a picnic meal you bloat and burp it up for what seems like forever?  That’s because everything “fermented” in the gut, it didn’t digest as it should.  All melons should be eaten and/or juiced BY THEMSELVES!

So I do work extensively with my clients with proper juicing recipes and what should and shouldn’t be combined.

JUICES ARE NOT MEANT TO REPLACE MEALS: Juices are wonderful tools for helping the body clean house and repair, but they are not meant to replace a meal, drinking them before meals, and between meals if you need an energizing pick me up in the middle of the day is wonderful.

Another health benefit of juicing is…. let’s be honest…. try as we may, many don’t eat near enough fruits and veggies each day, juicing is a wonderful healthy approach that allows you to reach your daily servings of fruits and vegetables, especially where our children are concerned.  Most kiddo’s will drink the daylights out of these juices before they sit and want to eat them with a fork.

 

Here is a wonderful juicer review link: https://www.reviews.com/juicer/ to help if you are uncertain which juicer would be right for you and your family.

 

I hope this was helpful….. As always I’d be over the moon to work with anyone who is wanting to benefit from changing their lifestyle and nutritional path for improving their energy and over-all health.

You can find out more about my services by going to http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

QFA Clinician, Orthomolecular Nutritionist

Harvested Health LLC

 Resources:

“The Food Babe Way” by Vani Hari

“Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Juices, What’s missing in your body?” by N.W. Walker D. Sc.

 


What Happens To The Food You Eat?

intestinesThe easiest analogy I can put forth would be comparing one’s body to that of a chemical engine, it accepts what one eats as fuel.  Sometimes it decides some of the fuel is unacceptable by discarding it by throwing it back up, or for some shooting it through quickly and sending it out the south pole region.  Sometimes, it will decide to store it in the fat cells to cushion the body against leaner times; and some it will gratefully use to fire its countless tiny cell furnaces after it applies some complex biochemical treatment.

If the energy output in the food one recently fed their engine is nutritionally deficient, the body will insist you send more through hunger triggers and one has the urge to raid the kitchen again. Which is why you can devour an entire bag of potato chips and still feel hungry, nutritionally they were empty!

If any of you reading have ever watched one of those survival shows, like “Naked and Afraid”, the people on the show sometimes  will go for the full 21 days with nothing more than water, and they always tell at the end of the show how much weight each one lost.  During a survival mode such as that; the body will use up the fat deposits first to feed the engine, then it will turn to breaking down muscle tissue, (eating itself).  When folks start getting sick and notice their body is breaking down is when the their engine has been being fed the wrong kind of fuel too many times, leaving the body to have to compensate with that which the body has stored.

Folks, our digestive system is basically a chemical refinery that is able to manufacture its own fuels and is capable of delivering energy from those raw materials: the proteins, fats, carbohydrates (that are broken down into starches and sugars), vitamins and minerals.  This whole process of digestion takes place the minute we send food into our mouth and down the esophagus into the stomach.

When we chew our food and it’s mixed with our saliva digestion begins.  Our digestive system is like that of a conveyor belt, there are various stations where other chemicals are contributed to convert the food/fuel so our engines can use it by breaking down, diluting and dissolving as well as adding some chemicals and even removing others.

When the food mixes with our saliva which is the first set of digestive enzymes the food comes into contact with, these enzymes are special protein molecules that act as “catalysts” the definition of catalysts: a substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change. So the job of these catalysts /Enzymes is to assist the body/engine in metabolizing, which is the what the body does to convert this fuel into energy.  The enzymes our body produces are called the spark plugs of life, we cannot process a single morsel of any food without them. Yet, when we are eating foods that are loaded with chemical preservatives or “enzyme inhibitors”, the very structure  of our enzymes that the body produces can be altered, which is why we see so many folks struggling with digestive issues.

The Stomach secretions, the enzymes from the pancreas, the liver and the glands lining the small intestines all act on the passing food.  As the food has been touched by the actions of these enzymes and ferments then the other catalytic agents of reduction in the mouth and stomach is now spread out, as it were, upon a huge carpet.  This carpet area is the lining of our small intestines, which is about 26 feet long and is covered with millions of villi, which are like little fingers that are constantly moving back and forth, they are sticking out from the lining of the small intestine.

So when we eat something that has an irritating effect, the bowel is going to either try to get rid of it quickly which we experience as diarrhea, or it puts a spastic clamp on the intestines to keep the irritating substances from moving which we experience as constipation.

This rich lining of delicate sensitive cells is our body’s first defense level, it fights the good fight against the absorption of unnatural and detrimental food elements.  Yet repeated absorption of these elements produces over time inflammation and even destruction of our delicate lining.  That is when the blood in these villi become so overcharged with toxic elements that elements of it is allowed to enter into the blood stream.

So, as these digested food particles are spread over our intestinal carpet to be absorbed, two important issues present themselves:  what is the quality of the food and the quantity?

If we overeat, that makes it difficult to digest, and too much is saved/absorbed.  The villi have no regulating ability to indicate how much to absorb.  This contributes to folks being overweight or they feel sick.

Typically when we sit down for a meal, we feast on a variety of foods.  Understanding that the way our body has to break down different elements in our foods, realizing that when we throw to many different foods in the same meal, can result in incomplete digestion.  How does that FEEL:

*bloating

*feeling full for hours

*sleepy after eating

When clients come to me with digestive issues, even food sensitivities, what ends up happening is we have to simplify their diet to reduce the work load on their digestive system.

Cells called small lymphocytes, carry food needed for growth and reproduction of our body’s cells.  This food is protein in nature, but before it can be used by the body’s cells, an iodine value must be added to it by the thyroid gland. The body is so incredibly amazing, the villi that line the small intestine have two sets of vessels, they have blood vessels and lymph vessels.  These lymph vessels are what transport lymphocytes and other white blood cells.  So during digestion it requires a large amount of lymphocytes, these enter the lymph vessels, and so the body will have enough available, God placed the largest organ for manufacture of these lymphocytes close to the small intestine.  That would be the spleen, whose function is to send armies of lymphocytes to the villi after we eat.

We hear about the importance of “amino acids”, and how they are building blocks in our body.  Well, as the lymphocytes are being pushed through these lymph channels of our villi, they absorb amino acids, which are the digested form of proteins.  They then get circulated toward a large duct, that would be the thoracic duct, which moves them to the subclavian vein into which the thoracic duct empties, just above the point where the secretion that comes from the thyroid gland is released into the same vein.  Now, TELL me this isn’t SUPER COOL……this all takes place and we don’t see it, we don’t feel it, but we can’t live without these functions!

It’s at this point that the lymphocytes are exposed to the iodine from the thyroid which “iodizes” their amino acids, which is what we need for cell growth and reproduction.  These lymphocytes then circulate in the blood vessels or lymph vessels, or sometimes cut right through the tissues to a needed location.  So after this cycle occurs these lymphocytes return to the spleen, where they either get disintegrated or are sent on again to the villi to cycle again.

This concept of digestion was introduced and published in the December, 1928, Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine.

I impress on my clients who are parents, WHAT you feed your children is important! During adolescent years lymphocytes are needed in larger than normal amounts, the stages of growth and repair that takes place during childhood and until the end of adolescence is what sets the very foundation of health as our kiddo’s enter adulthood. During this period God has supplied an extra lymphocyte-manufacturing center which would be the thymus gland, which begins to shrink after adolescence.  The thymus is by the thyroid so that iodine is readily available.  So realize that the foundation of our children’s health future should be supplied with the very best building material we can supply.  Fast food, like chicken nuggets, and French fries and soda, and boat loads of refined sugary foods; isn’t going to make that happen.

CARBOHYDRATES:

When we eat carbs and complex sugars our digestive system reduces those to simple glucose, which the blood vessels of the villi absorb and that glucose gets burned directly in our muscles.  The body receives its muscular energy and heat from this.  Fats are also combustible, but they usually burn better with the carbohydrate flame.  (I’ll touch more on this on a later post)

EMOTIONS:

Gut and psychology go together.  How one “feels” is really dependent on how your food processor (digestion system) is processing.   If we pay attention and “watch” people, take a holiday meal, some families laugh at the fact that when their whole family gets together, many times someone causes an uproar.  If you take notice most of that tends to happen AFTER the meal has been eaten.   That’s when emotions run high.  Watch the kiddo’s at a holiday function, after the sweets are served up, the kids get hyper, weepy, or can toss some fits.  What we eat makes us who we are, and our emotions are predicated on what takes place in the gut.  I’ll dig deeper on that in a different post.

 

References:

“Journal of Laboratory & Clinical”, Dec. 1928, Dr. Warren T. Vaughan M.D.

Dr. J.H. Salisbury: “The Relation of Alimentation & Disease.”

Dr. William Beaumont (Father of Gastric Physiology) “Life & Letter of Dr. William Beaumont”.

Dr. Bieler M.D. “The Magnificent Human Body”

 

The next post will move onto our body’s second line of defense that is employed to keep us healthy!

Stay tuned….

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

Harvested Health LLC

http://www.mkt.com/harvested-health-llc

 


FOOD TIP TUESDAY:Carrots

carrots  Incorporating raw carrots into ones diet particularly through juicing, depending on the person from one to six pints a day, has the effect of helping to normalize the entire system.

 

It is the richest source of Vitamin A which the body assimilates quickly, as well as contributing a nice supply of Vitamins B, C, D, E, G, and K.  It promotes ones appetite and helps with digestion.  The properties of raw carrot juice is also a valuable aid in the improvement and maintenance of the bone structure of the teeth.

nursing-mother  Nursing mothers should drink plenty of raw carrot juice to enhance the quality of their milk, as a breast milk diet depending on the mom’s diet and lifestyle may tend to be deficient in key nutrients.  One pint of carrot juice, daily, has more body value than 25 lbs. of calcium tablets, which in most cases the calcium is not metabolized in it’s entirety through tablets.

cancerRaw carrot juice is resistant to infections, and works efficiently with the adrenal glands.  It is a natural solvent for ulcerous and cancerous conditions.  It prevents infections of the eyes and throat as well as the tonsils and sinuses and respiratory system.  It also is protective for the nervous system.

intestines Intestinal and liver issues are sometimes due to a lack of certain nutritional elements which are prominent in raw carrot juice.  So if you begin a regime of daily raw carrot juice you may notice a clean up of the  liver, and the material that was clogging it may be found to dissolve.  Frequently this is release so fast that the intestinal and urinary channels struggle to keep up with the overflow, so it ends up rolling through the lymph system which can result in the body using the skin and can cause a temporary discoloration of the skin either in yellow or orange in color.  When my youngest son had intestinal surgery as an infant, once we brought him home, I wanted to help his system detox from the drugs given to him, and hence he turned orange for about a week, then it disappeared.  Take notice that if this occurs KNOW that your liver needed the added assistance with cleaning itself.  It is NOT the carrot juice itself nor the carotene that comes through the skin, as this discoloration will take place even if the juice is filtered to the point of clearing it of all color pigment.  If you were to juice beets daily your skin would NOT turn red, or if you had liquid chlorophyll daily again your skin would not turn green.

endocrineThe endocrine glands, especially the adrenals and the gonads (sex organs), require food nutrients found in raw carrot juice.  We are seeing a lot folks struggling with infertility issues, when we consume a diet of nothing but cooked foods, “breakfast, lunch and dinner”, please remember that the needed atoms and enzymes are destroyed by cooking and pasteurizing.

skinDo you struggle with dry skin, dermatitis or acne? How about night blindness?  Adding raw carrot juice daily can and will support these issues.  Remember that carrot juice is super rich in organic sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron as well as vital organic elements of phosphorus, Sulphur, silicon and chlorine that is perfectly balanced in their action and reaction on our body.

ulcerFor those of you who may be dealing with stomach ulcer issues, raw carrot juice can prove to be very healing, and I will also suggest that one remove ALL concentrated sugar, starch and flour from their diet while this healing is occurring.  From and emotional basis there is also a strong connection to ulcers and certain cancers when one has been nursing resentment for a long time. So you should be willing to address any emotional connections to what maybe contributing to your health imbalances.

 

I have also had client’s who have embarked on a juice regime and called me saying that they couldn’t continue because the juices were making them sick.  Please understand that the juice routines are meant to implement house cleaning and sometimes that house cleaning may NOT be comfortable.  When ones body has been functioning on tilt without ample supply of needed nutrients, and then it begins to receive them, the organs and tissues start the rejuvenation process and now have added vigor to take the trash to the curb.  When that occurs it may get your attention.  Please stick with it, if the cleansing response feels brutal, then slow it down by drinking less juice daily but don’t quit.

microscopeFUN TIDBIT:  Studies have found that the carrot juice molecule is comparable to that of the blood molecule, I found this revealing fact to be so interesting.

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

 

 




FOOD TIP TUESDAY: Brussels Sprouts J

benefits-of-brussel-sprouts1

Food Tip Tuesday:
BRUSSELS SPROUTS JUICE:
The juice of Brussels Sprouts combined with carrot, some green bean, and romaine furnishes a combo of elements which helps to strengthen and regenerate the INSULIN properties of the pancreatic functions which are critical for our digestive process. For this reason, it has been shown to be a huge benefit for those trying to balance their diabetes.

Don’t try to feel the need to fit juicing “into” your daily cooking routine, add it to a meal you are already in the kitchen preparing, who says you cannot drink a veggie juice with breakfast, lunch or in place of a side salad with dinner?  Many try to squeeze these in between mealtime and get frustrated.  Switch it up and support your health, incorporate some juicing into your daily meal planning.

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

Harvested Health LLC

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http://www.harvestedhealth.mynsp.com


The “COME HITHER”, call of sugar…

There is a massive “love affair”, sweeping our country!  I believe the harlot’s name is called “sugar.”

Once you’ve tasted her, it only makes ya want more.  Yet for years, the concept of sugar addiction was dismissed by most scientists and doctors.  Research, however, is forcing this concept to be reconsidered.

Experts used to explain “sugar cravings” as the result of spikes & crashes in blood sugar levels.  Now of course this contributes, hence sugar and refined carbohydrates, which are easily reduced to sugar, are calorie dense and are rapidly absorbed by the body.  These foods 1st elevate the blood sugar levels, but are processed fast, leaving you feel unsatisfied and still hungry for more sugar.  This hunger is NOT driven by a need for caloric energy, but by a need for a stable blood glucose level.  Foods that are high in protein and fiber have a slower absorption rate and keep one satisfied longer.  All carbohydrates do eventually convert into sugar once inside the body, but more complex carbs do so at a much slower rate than simple carbs.

The word “addiction” has many connotations.  People laugh about all sorts of vices they consider themselves to be addicted too: sex, coffee, tobacco, alcohol, gambling, internet, video games, shopping….. Yet, there truly is no definitive test for addiction.  You cannot go to your doctor and have him swab your throat and come back and tell you that, yes, you have tested positive for addiction.  Mental health professionals usually diagnose addiction, and the definition is somewhat subjective.  A person’s quality of life, rather than their biochemical state is assessed.  Most agree, however, that a loss of control, along with the presence of tolerance and withdrawal, are the most notable features of addiction.

The”Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders IV”, the manual used by professionals to formally diagnose mental disorders, lists the criteria for diagnosis of addiction as meeting three or more of these factors:

  1. tolerance; the need for increased amounts of the substance to achieve the desired effect, or a diminished effect when the same amount is consumed.
  2. withdrawal symptoms when the substance is not taken
  3. a greater use of the substance than intended
  4. unsuccessful efforts to control the use of the substance
  5. a great deal of time spent using the substance or recovering from use
  6. a reduction of social, occupational, or recreational activities because of the substance
  7. continued use of the substance despite knowing that it causes social and physical problems.

When you base the above criteria alone, there is no doubts that sugar, as well as any other substance or action, can be considered addictive.  But can a person be addicted to sugar in the same fashion that someone can be addicted to drugs or alcohol?  For some, sugar does seem to have tangible effects in the brain, leaving them in a neurochemical state similar to drug addiction.  Although sugar does not exactly mimic the brain activity of addictive drugs, alcohol or nicotine, some similarities have been discovered.  If you’ve ever known someone who was recovering from alcoholism or drug additions, most of those folks are reaching for “chocolate, coffee, even cigarettes.”  Why might that be?  Well the endogenous opioid system is the brains mechanism for controlling pain.  Normally, pain is adaptive, letting us know that a part of our body needs attention & rest.  Persistent or excruciating pain, however, is maladaptive.  To manage pain, the body produces brain chemicals called endorphins.  Endorphins, also called opioids, work by binding to special receptors on our brain cells, called opioid receptors, and blocking a complex cascade of reactions, leading to the perception of pain. So when you hurt your back, and the doctor prescribes pain medicine, that medicine is blocking the brains pain receptor signal so you can’t quite “FEEL” the pain.

Research has suggested that SUGAR has a similar effect on the endogenous opioid system.  Of course “rats” were used for the study, but the study was to determine if excessive sugar intake could lead to tolerance and withdrawal, so the rats were placed on a cycle of bingeing on a glucose solution in addition to eating regular rat food.  After 8 days, the rats had increased their intake of glucose solution from 30mL to 79mL per day, and were eating more food.  At this point some of the rats were administered a drug called Naloxone which is used on folks who have overdosed on an opiate, because it blocks the opiate molecules from binding to the opioid receptors, and, by the same blocking, can induce withdrawal symptoms in an addict.  So they precipitated a withdrawal in some rats and the others were taken off the glucose solution and given saline injections.  Both rats experienced similar withdrawal symptoms.  If sugar did not have an opiate like effect on the brain, the naloxone group would not have displayed withdrawal symptoms.  In addition, further analysis of the rats brains found that the naloxone group had decreased levels of brain chemical dopamine and increased levels of the brain chemical acetylcholine.  This dopamine/acetylcholine imbalance is characteristic of morphine and nicotine withdrawal.

This same study determined that both sugar and morphine had a similar effect on dopamine levels in the brain, first increasing the amount of dopamine and then causing the dopamine to be down regulated, so that the absence of sugar and/or morphine left the rats lacking adequate dopamine.  Dopamine imbalances are found in schizophrenic and cocaine abusers.  Now with this being said; not everyone who consumes sugar will have an addictive effect  because not everyone experiences the same neurochemical effect, just like not everyone who drinks alcohol will become an alcoholic.

Biologist Sarah Tanksley believes that a “lack of serotonin is a factor in many mental disorders, including clinical depression.  Sugar and other refined carbs increase the level of serotonin in the brain.  Serotonin plays a key role in the pathway of pain management by inducing their release of opioids.  It would seem reasonable to conclude that a person with depression may resort to bingeing on sweet foods to increase serotonin, release opioids and feel the addiction process.”

Sarah went on to say: ” Perhaps a better understanding of the effects of sugar on our brains can lead to treatments for eating disorders such as binge eating and bulimia.  Many therapists treat eating disorders as addictions, and the endogenous opioid system may be the mechanism at work.  The binge eater will consume hugs amounts of food in a short amount of time, seemingly without limits.  A bulimic will eat large amounts of typically sugary, starchy foods, and once the desired opiate like effect is obtained, will purge the food to avoid weight gain.  Since bingeing on sweets, prolonged starvation and vigorous exercise all activate the endogenous opioid system, it is easy to see how a person could become stuck in an addictive cycle of starving, bingeing, and purging, through vomiting and/or exercise.”

These findings also make sense when you consider smokers who will gain weight after they quit smoking, and heroin addicts who suffer a loss of appetite when using the drug, then crave sugary candy during detoxification from the drug.  Eating disorders, bulimia in particular, have a high co-morbidity with alcoholism and other drug additions, according to Sarah Tanksley Biologist.

What makes it difficult to refrain from sugar is the fact that it is so readily available.  You don’t have to go to a bar or a special store to buy candy like you do other addictive elements.  It’s NOT illegal either.  In fact, eating sugar is often encouraged, we give candy as gifts, as rewards and treats to our children, sugary treats are elevated as gifts of acknowledgement and as expressions of love and kindness. Heart shaped boxes filled with chocolates are given for Valentines Days, Christmas, Easter etc.

There is a whole host of physical issues that also accompany a sugar addiction:

weight gain

candida/yeast over-growth

immune system weakness

brain-fog

insulin imbalances (hypoglycemia & diabetes)

digestive issues

Constipation

inflammation

Cancer: ( sugar creates a very acidic pH internal environment which is like fertilizer to cancer cells)

I get clients who when I’m working nutritionally with them and their children, I cannot tell you how many mothers “ask”, when can they have sugar again?  We get emotionally attached to what we offer through our foods, meaning, cooking a nice meal for someone has become a way of exhibiting “love” for another, especially when its their “favorite.”

Folks, food and eating is meant to FEED and NOURISH the body, there are other ways to show your love for someone.  Don’t make food a reward, it is a basic need.  One example that drives that point home to me is how many have ever watched any of those shows where folks are dropped off in the middle of no where to survive.. like ” Naked and afraid”,  the people participating in those do or die situations, when they run across something that can be eaten, they are not elaborating in their minds about how it LOOKS, what kind of plate its served on, what side dish will they serve with it.  The truth is they are hungry!  When you can change and adapt your mental connection as to what role food is meant to play, I believe you can begin the healing process of being able to abstain from all the overly processed foods that create these addictive cycles that are destroying our health, and especially the health of our children.

The amount of sugars and carbohydrate overload that our youth are consuming on a daily basis is and should be totally SHOCKING!  Yet those foods (which I hate even categorizing them as), are easy to serve, they are quick convenient. Although, grabbing an apple is quick and convenient, how about a handful of grapes, or strawberries, a banana, are NOT all of those quick and convenient too?

I believe there is a PRICE to pay for the simplicity of quick and convenient. We are developing a generation of over-weight, underactive people who struggle to stay emotionally balanced, cannot cope with even simple stressors, even technology is jumping on board to fill in the anti-social gap, even though we refer to it as “social media”, “text messaging”, and all the other communication “apps”, sure we are able to connect with people all across the globe now, but think about something,  those connections are emotionally unattached, and impersonal.  Try calling a teen-ager or young adult on their phone today and most will let it go to voice mail.  But text message them and it’s answered within seconds, look at groups of people in social gatherings and  how many are physically making eye contact with the folks they are with?  Most have their heads down buried in their cell phones.  Lack of serotonin production, dopamine levels that are off, all the neurotransmitters that allow us to FEEL our emotional connections are off and just spend some time people watching and tell me I’m wrong.

We need to also realize we have been conditioned over the years by commercials/advertising.  Ever notice that all the junk foods tend to cost “less” than wholesome fresh foods?  Well that is because those junk foods can grace the store shelves for 3+ years, I don’t think an apple/orange or banana would pass that test. But you are wasting your money on those junk food items because they offer the body ZERO in the nutritional elements, so you are eating empty food items. So why waste your money?

So for any of my readers who may still be wondering: “Is my body addicted to sugar?”  if you find yourself asking the very question, your answer probably needs to gravitate to a yes!!!  Is there a way to navigate yourself away from that addiction?  Yes there is, but it will be a process, the body needs to be built up nutritionally for balance.

Healthfully yours,

Jodi Barnett N.D.

Harvested Health LLC

Resources:

Wellbeing journal Vol,. 14, NO.2

Sarah Tanksley, Biologist.