The nutritional content of commercially produced fruits, vegetables and grains has decreased severely over the past 70 years, for several reasons. The synthetic fertilizers used since the early 1900’s have only a few macro-minerals needed for growth. Thus our food-producing soils, and in turn our food, is now depleted of all the rest of the macro-minerals, micro-minerals and trace minerals needed for our good health.
The mineral-impoverished food plants have a greatly diminished resistance to disease. Thus, heavier and heavier amounts of pesticides and fungicides have been needed over the years. The beneficial micro-organisms needed for healthy plants and found in healthy soil, cannot live in the mineral and humus-depleted, pesticide and herbicide-saturated soils.
All the hybrid crops today were bred for qualities that have nothing to do with nutrient content. For example, the protein content of our wheat has dropped by half of what it was in the 1930’s. The hybrid wheat now grown in the U.S. and Canada is also more allergenic.
Fruits that are picked green, and then artificially ripened, have much less vitamin and mineral content than tree-ripened fruits. The longer produce is in storage, the more vitamin loss occurs. Locally grown and sold fruits can be picked in a more ripe state, thus are more nutrient-dense.
PRODUCE: Fresh (with no sign of wilting) produce contains more nutrients and enzymes than frozen foods. Frozen foods contain more nutrients and enzymes than canned foods. Canned foods also absorb some of the metal of the cans, even those with a “protective” film lining the insides of the cans. Organically grown vegetables test to have 2 – 5 times more nutrient density as non-organic.
Eliminate iceberg lettuce from your diet, as it has no nutrient value and is heavily sprayed. Any of the other lettuces are fine.
MEAT: Although DES hormone was banned by the F.D.A. as an additive to cattle feed, most commercial beef cattle are still fattened with DES (or Synovex S/estrogen combination) pellets injected into their ears, causing the meat to become saturated with water and fat. The goal is to reach a marketable weight at an early age. Tranquilizers may also be added to the feed so that the cattle will not desire to move around, and thus will gain weight more rapidly. Antibiotics have needed to be added in ever increasing amounts to the feed to keep the cattle infection-free. However, antibiotics can do nothing to prevent the increasing incidence of cancer in commercial beef cattle.
The best guarantee of good meat is to find farmers who raise free-range animals, without using synthetic hormones and antibiotics. Your local health food store should be able to supply you with sources.
Beef from grass-fed cows has an ideal health-giving ratio of the omega 6 essential fatty acids to omega 3 e.f.a.’s (3:1 ratio, like wild fish), and usually less than 10% of the fat is saturated. Grain-fed beef has an omega 6:3 ratio of 20:1, and over 50% of their fat may be saturated fat. (As a nation, we have become very deficient in omega 3 fatty acids.) Grass-fed has 300 to 400% more health-promoting CLA (conjugated linoleic acid, which helps prevent obesity) and beta-carotene, and has over 400% more of vitamins A and D.
Feeding minced up dead animals to cows in feed lots was banned in the U.S. in 1997 due to concern about Mad Cow Disease. However, minced dead horses and pigs are still sometimes found in the cattle feed in feed lots. A dramatically higher incidence of the dangerous form of E. Coli is found in grain-fed beef, compared to grass-fed. The USDA classifies feed-lot carcasses with cancers, tumors and open sores as “safe for human consumption”!
All wild game has the ideal omega 6:3 ratio, and are highly nutritious foods.
POULTRY: Most of the supermarket chickens never see daylight. Penned up 3 – 4 to a tiny cage in buildings with 24 hour/day fluorescent lighting, they are given huge doses of antibiotics in their feed, in an attempt to keep them disease-free. 90% of all commercially raised chicken are also given synthetic estrogen, and arsenic in their feed, to produce faster growth. Much more could be said; instead I recommend the books, Food for Naught by Ross Hall, History of a Crime by Harvey Wiley, M.D., and the magazines Acres, U.S.A., and Health Freedom News by the National Health Federation.
FISH: The FDA has been pressured by the seafood industry to shut down it mercury monitoring program and to minimize the harm caused by the ever increasing mercury levels in fish. (I have a separate handout on the toxic effects of mercury, especially to the brain and nervous system. Our health is adversely affected by even a molecule of this second most toxic metal on earth!) Our environment is polluted by hundreds of millions of tons of mercury by burning coal for electricity. The mercury eventually finds it way into the waterways where it is bio-accumulated to very high levels in the larger fish. Using hair mineral analysis, patients who don’t eat any fish (and don’t have silver fillings) are the only ones who have immeasurable levels of mercury in their hair.
The most toxic are tuna, king mackerel, golden snapper, shark and swordfish.
The least mercury-toxic fish are summer flounder, wild pacific salmon, sardines and croaker. At the level of mercury pollution at this time, one should keep their intake of any fish to less than 12 ounces per week. Many health professionals recommend eliminating fish altogether at this point.
As with wild game and grass-fed beef, wild fish has an ideal essential fatty acid ratio. Farm-raised fish has a poor fatty acid ratio, and is much less nutrient-dense.
EGGS: Previous popular theory maintained that since eggs contain cholesterol, eating eggs would cause an unhealthy increase in blood cholesterol. However, human studies that are independent from the hydrogenated oil industry reveal that egg consumption (participants in one of the studies were fed 35 egg yolks/day for at least a month) does not raise blood cholesterols (often previously high cholesterols will decrease), and has no observable negative effects on health. Other independent studies point to the combination of sugar, refined starches and “bad” fats (especially partially hydrogenated oils) as the culprits behind abnormally high cholesterol levels, rather than cholesterol-rich foods.
Good cholesterol is produced by the liver as the precursor to all our essential hormones. Bad cholesterol is laid down in artery plaques from diets high in junk food, bad fats, and homogenized milk, and low in minerals and vitamins. Health conditions such as sluggish thyroid or liver function, diabetes and high blood triglycerides also contribute to atherosclerosis.
Eggs from hens that are able to run outside with access to greens, earthworms and insects have higher lecithin content (as well as other nutrients) than commercial eggs usually sold in supermarkets. Lecithin emulsifies (breaks up) cholesterol, thus actually aiding in dissolving abnormal cholesterol plaque build-up in arterial walls.
Egg yolks have been used through the ages in cultures around the world as medicine. All the vitamins and essential fatty acids are in the yolk. Egg white has a tendency to congest the lymphatic system, and raw egg white destroys biotin in the intestines. Traditional cultures often discarded the egg white as unfit to eat. In my testing on people allergic to eggs, it is often the egg white that is the culprit, and they are fine with egg yolk.
DAIRY: Antibiotics, synthetic hormones and pesticide/herbicide residues accumulate in fat, thus it’s best to buy organic butter, cream and cheese. Homogenizing milk breaks up the fat globules, releasing xanthine oxidase, which causes damage to the blood vessel walls leading to arterial plaque formation. The best bet is to buy local unprocessed milk. Otherwise, I personally buy organic non-fat milk and organic table cream, and add the cream to the milk myself. The body needs milk fat specifically (cream and butter), to use the calcium and protein in milk and dairy products. For more information, read www.Realmilk.com.
NO MARGARINE! Margarine and all other hydrogenated oils should be stringently avoided. Synthetically hardened (hydrogenated) oil is difficult for the body to handle, because the hydrogenation process creates bad trans fatty acids, which blocks the body’s cells from using the essential fatty acids so important to health. Trans fatty acids are strongly linked to heart disease and cancer in both human and animals. The health of the brain, nervous system, reproductive system and immune system are all dependent on essential fatty acids.
Use organic, cold pressed oils and organic butter instead. (Organic, because herbicides and pesticides have an affinity for fats and oils.) Be sure the peanut butter and other food products you buy do not have partially hydrogenated oil added. Read all labels!
The best oils to use are: grape seed, sunflower, safflower, extra virgin olive, coconut, sesame, almond, walnut, rice bran, and palm. Excellent brands are: Flora, Omega Nutrition and Barlean’s.
DRINKING WATER: Much of the municipal water supplies contain pesticide run-off, industrial pollutants, and high amounts of chlorine, copper sulfate and/or aluminum sulfate to kill bacteria, all of which are known to be detrimental to health. Your best bet is to purify your tap water (a combination of reverse osmosis and charcoal block is good) or buy purified water from a pure water dispenser at some supermarkets. Store preferably in glass gallon jars. If you need to use plastic, the harder, more brittle plastic leaches the least into the water. Avoid drinking distilled water – it has the wrong ionization, pH, polarization and oxidation potentials.
To re-oxygenate water before drinking, pour the water from one glass to another, one or more times.
POTS and PANS: The best cooking containers are glass (such as Arcoroc), ceramic, and enamel-covered anything as long as the enamel isn’t chipped. Salad Master makes high quality surgical grade stainless steel cookware, where none of the metal leaches into the food during cooking. Iron cookware is good for people who tend toward iron-deficient anemia; however, some people store excess iron in their liver and heart – iron cookware would worsen their condition. ELIMINATE ALL ALUMINUM! If you must use Teflon, throw the pan away if it becomes scratched.
COOKING: The more processing a food goes through, the less nutrients and enzymes left in that food. Boiling a food in water leaches the nutrients out from the food into the water (which is fine if you drink the water afterward, or save it for soup stock). Nutrients are lost in steam, so keep the heat down so that you loose as little steam as possible. The best methods of for cooking vegetables are:
- using a steamer, or waterless low-heat cooking utensil (such as the Salad Master line).
- quickly sautéing until just tender. A less greasy way to sauté is to use just a teaspoon of oil to coat the vegetables at first, then adding a little water as needed until the vegetables are tender, but still crisp.
Good fats and oils that can be heated at low to moderate heat without harm are: coconut, butter, olive, grape seed, sesame, high oleic sunflower and safflower, palm, and animal fats (lard).
GRAINS: Whole grains contain numerous vitamins, trace minerals and natural fiber that are processed out of refined grain and flour products (such as white rice, white bread, pasta made from refined flour). Whole grains need about ½ hour to simmer, so start cooking your grain before preparing anything else. Whole grain pasta is cooked the same way as refined flour pasta.
Bread can legally be labeled “whole wheat” even if it is composed of mostly refined flour, as long as a small percent of wheat germ and wheat bran are added. Read the small print – it should start with “whole ______”, rather than “unbleached flour”. Make sure it contains “oil” rather than “partially hydrogenated oil”. Avoid breads that have chemicals in the list of ingredients.
ENZYMES: Enzymes are known as the “spark plugs” of life. Enzymes initiate every biochemical reaction in the body. Enzymes from raw, uncooked food cause the food we eat to be digested. Cooking destroys enzymes, which must be compensated for by the pancreas. Humans are the only species on the planet that consistently over-tax enzyme production of the pancreas and tissues by cooking their food. Our pets also eat cooked food and suffer from the same degenerative diseases as their human owners.
Blood enzyme levels are low in persons with chronic degenerative problems (from chronic allergies and arthritis to diabetes and cancer). In older humans, the tissue enzyme reserve has been more or less depleted by a lifetime of eating cooked food. An average of only 1% of ingested starch will be digested in the mouth and intestines of the elderly.
In research studies where animals are allowed only cooked food, the second generation on only cooked food began to manifest the whole range of chronic degenerative diseases. The third generation was infertile. Luckily we humans eat some uncooked food, so we continue to exist from generation to generation, though afflicted with degenerative disease.
Enzyme therapy has been used in various countries with great success to clear up problems from psoriasis to leukemia. I recommend enzyme supplements for everyone, to replenish the body enzyme reserves used up on the cooked food diets we and our ancestors have existed on. If nothing else, eat something raw before eating cooked food. This prevents the sharp increase in white blood cells that occurs (as if in response to a toxin) when we eat cooked food.
NO PRESERVATIVES, STABILIZERS or OTHER CHEMICALS: Over 60% of hyperactive and learning disabled children manifest cerebral problems as a result of such chemicals being eaten. Anxiety, depression, headache, poor concentration, insomnia, etc. may occur in varying degrees in anyone, for up to 3 days after consuming these chemicals.
ELIMINATE REFINED SUGAR AND CAFFEINE: Refined sugar causes imbalances in blood chemistry for more than 24 hours after ingested, and depletes the body of essential vitamins and minerals. Caffeine constricts blood vessels and other tissue fibers, and stresses the adrenal glands, pancreas, liver and heart. Besides caffeine, coffee has several other toxic acids.
If one were to eliminate caffeine, bad fats like margarine and hydrogenated oils, and refined sugar and flour products, the financial savings in needing less medicine, antibiotics, supplements, doctor and hospital visits would be well worth it! At least 6 months is added to the time for the body to respond to natural medicine, for each of the above if kept in the diet. What would take 6 weeks to heal without these, will often take 2 –3 years if these items stay in the diet.
TIPS FOR BETTER DIGESTION:
Allow enough time to sit down and eat at a leisurely pace. When hurried or otherwise stressed, the sympathetic nervous system will suppress the parasympathetic activity of digestion, thus nourishment will not be gained from the food. Instead, the food putrefies or ferments in the stomach and intestines.
Eat until you are satisfied, not until you are stuffed.
Gulping down a cold beverage along with a meal may hinder digestion – by acting as a shock to the stomach, and by diluting the hydrochloric acid needed to break down the food.
Sipping a hot drink with or after a meal may aid digestion – the warm liquid acts as a stimulus to digestive secretions.
The fewer different kinds of foods at one meal, the easier the meal is to digest.
Eating raw fruits and raw vegetables together is a common source of gastro-intestinal distress.
Eating an acid fruit (such as grapefruit or oranges) at a starchy meal (such as cereal) hinders starch digestion, causing gas for many.
Fruit should be eaten alone on an empty stomach between meals, or with nuts, seeds or dairy products. Melons are best not combined with anything else.
Meat, fowl and fish are digested the best when combined with vegetables, rather than starches such as bread, potatoes and pasta.
Starches are also best digested when combined with vegetables, rather than with meats. People with digestive problems often find relief by eating their flesh proteins and their starches at separate meals. However, other people can easily digest flesh protein and starch when eaten together.