Welcome to Mood Food Energy Café.
We are happy that you chose to come in our space to eat or to simply enjoy our atmosphere and contribute to the community feeling we are eager to create. It is really precious for us to have you here.
“Eating to Live, rather than Living to Eat” is our main principle here. Our kitchen is an active laboratory in which we research, explore, and discover the meeting points of healthy food and pleasure. The menu you find here is always transitory, as we constantly get inspired and excited to share our new discoveries with you.
We try to be as organic as it is possible to be in this area. We are discussing with local farmers about the possibility of having all our produce grown organically so one day we could offer you meals that are 100% organic. We are confident that this should happen soon as the idea is smiling to some farmers that are sensitive to that topic. Meanwhile, already many products like our rice, vinegars, nuts, superfoods, and many others we use are already organic.
Note that we are more than a restaurant. We are a health center that offers information through literature, classes and videos, and other services like detox programs, colonic irrigations, ionic footbaths, Yoga classes and Qi Gong Retreats.
Please feel welcome to inquire about any of our services and food and we will answer humbly with the best of our knowledge.
Thanks for honoring this place with your presence!
Daniel, Yanzi, Mama, and all the staff.
Mood Food Breakfast
Mini buffet for two person
Vegetable Omelet with cheese
2 Swiss Muesli 2 Fruit Juices or Fruit Salad for 2
2 Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Poached Eggs on Sourdough Bread (1 or 2 eggs)
Fruit Juice or Fruit Plate
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
¥ 28 or 34
Costa Rica Breakfast
Sopa Negra w/egg
Fruit Juice & Papaya-Lemon Salad
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Nut Case Breakfast
Almond-Sunflower Cereal on Fruit Salad
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Black Ear Mushroom Egg Scramble
Rice Noodles Soup with Vegetables
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Buckwheat Pancakes w/Honey
Fruit Juice or Fruit Plate
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
New Age Breakfast
Swiss Muesli (Almond Milk, Walnut, Apple & Honey)
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
High Fiber Breakfast
Oatmeal w/Dates, Raisins, Walnuts, Cinnamon & Honey
Fruit Juice or Fruit Plate
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Sourdough Bread or Toast w/Homemade Jam, Peanut Butter
Fruit Juice or Fruit Plate
Tea, Coffee, or Flower Water
Breakfast à la Carte
Add to You Breakfast
B1. Swiss Muesli (Almond Milk, Walnut, Apple & Honey): 22
B2. Oatmeal w/Dates, Raisins, Walnuts, Cinnamon & Honey: 22
B3. Buckwheat Pancakes w/honey (3): 22
B4. Poached Eggs on Sourdough Bread (1 or 2 eggs): 18/24
B5. Black Ear Mushroom Egg Scramble: 24
B6. Sopa Negra w/egg: 30
B7. Almond-Sunflower Cereal on Fruit Salad: 28
B8. Job’s Tears Porridge with Miso & Gomasio or Raw Honey: 22
B9. Sourdough Bread w/Homemade Jam or peanut butter (2 slices): 16
B10. Egg (boiled or poached): 6 each
B11. Fruit Plate: 10
B12. Coconut Milk Yogurt bowl: 14
B13. Cow Milk Yogurt Bowl: 10
B14. Mixed Raw Nuts: 25
B15. Sourdough Bread (2 slices): 6
B16. Homemade Jam: 4
B17. Peanut Butter: 4
B18. Sesame Butter: 4
B19. Raw Honey: 3
B20. Shooter of Yogurt: 3
B21. Butter: 3
B22. Raw Cacao (10 beans): 8
B23. Chia Seeds (1 Table Spoon): 8
B24. Maca Powder (1 Table Spoon): 8
B25. Spirulina (1 Table Spoon): 8
B26. Bee Pollen (1 Table Spoon): 8
B27. Wheat Germ (1 Table Spoon): 3
B28. Wheat Grass: 6
E1. Pasta Putanesca (can ask for either wheat fusilli, rice noodles or raw zucchini): 45
E2. Creamy Pesto (can ask for either wheat penne, rice noodles or raw zucchini): 45
E3. Vegan Cheese-Vegetable Pasta: 45
E4. Pizza Improvisation (buckwheat or wheat crust): 45
E5. Vietnamese Rice Noodles: 42
E6. Raw Sun Burger: 42
E7. Mexican Wrap: 42
E8. Savory-Sweet Vegetable Brown Rice: 38
E9. Croque-Veggie: 38
E10. Indonesian Gado-Gado: 38
E11. Spring Rolls w/peanut sauce: 32
E12. Tofu & Vegetable Scramble: 28
Chinese Aromatic Dishes
steamed, stir fried, or grilled
E13. Egg & Garlic Chives in Pita Pockets: 38
E14. Shushu’s pie (Tofu-Egg-Noodle Steam Pie with Vegetables): 38
E15. Shitake Mushrooms Dumplings (12) w/ Wasabi Sauce: 38
E16. Grilled Marinated Tofu with Red Rice: 30
E17. Mixed Mushrooms Plate: 28
E18. Five Colors Vegetable Plate: 28
E19. Broccoli Plate: 28
E20. Herb Pumpkin Plate: 26
E21. Herb Sliced Potatoes Plate: 26
E22. Sour Black Root Noodle: 26
Bowl or pot for 4 persons
Served with bread and gomasio
E23. Miso-Shitake-Tofu: 30/85
E24. Thai Coconut Soup: 30/85
E25. Cream of Pumpkin: 30/85
E26. Cream of Cauliflower: 30/85
E27. Sopa Negra w/Egg: 30/85
E28. Cucumber-Mint (cold soup): 30/no pot
E29. Veggie-fruit Salad: 42
E30. Mushrooms Black Rice Salad: 42
E31. Pesto Red Rice Salad: 42
E32. Lebanese Potato-Mint salad: 38
E33. Vegan Caesar Salad: 38
E34. Apple-Walnut Salad: 38
E35. Tomato/Cilantro/Capers/Cheese Salad: 32
E36. Near East Cucumber Salad: 28
E37. Carrot/Capers/Raisins Salad: 28
Extra Salad Dressing: 4
E38. Sourdough Bread w/butter (2 slices): 6
E39. Pita Bread: 6
E40. Salad dressing: 4
E41. Red Rice Bowl: 3
Flower Water/ Gui Hua or Rose
D1. Glass (350ml): 6
D2. Bottle (1 liter): 18
(a nourishing glass of alkalizing protein / Almond, Cashew, or Walnut)
D3. Plain or Cane Sugar or with Dates & Cinnamon: 24
(a traditional non-dairy source of protein)
D4. Plain or Cane Sugar or with Dates and Cinnamon: 18
Seasonal Fruit Juices
(watermelon, lemon, papaya, passion fruit)
(Almond, Cashew, Sesame or Walnut): A nourishing glass of alkalizing protein
D6. Plain or Cane Sugar or with Dates & Cinnamon: 24
(a traditional non-dairy source of protein)
D7. Plain or Cane Sugar or with Dates & Cinnamon: 18
Coffee & Teas
D8. Miso: 18
D9. Herbal Teas: 18
Choose from: Chamomile, lavender, jasmine, gui hua, or rose
D10. Goji Tea: 18
D11. Japanese Genmaicha: 18
D12. Green Tea: 12
D13. Coffee (Yunnan Organic): 12
Gong Fu Cha
D14. Spring Green Tea (Yangshuo): 30
D15. Oolong Tea (Taiwan): 35
D16. Tie Guan Yin (Fujian): 35
D17. Da Hong Pao (Wuyishan): 45
D18. Zheng Xiang Xiao Zhong (Fujian): 45
D19. Puer Tea (Yunnan): 35
Our Speciality Drinks
Detox Juices: (All 25)
D20. Turmeric juice
D21. Pineapple-Cabbage juice
D22. Tomato-Celery Juice
D23. Green Lemonade
D24. Classic Carrot Cleanser
D25. Cucumber Greens Delight Detox
D26. Breuss Veggie Juice
D27. Minty Cucumber Cooler
D28. Watermelon Mineralizer
D29. Watermelon-Orange Mineralizer
D30. Emerald Reviver
Lassies & Shakes
Add ¥4 Yuan and have your Lassie made with coconut yogurt
D31. Sesame Shake or Lassie
D32. Peanut Shake or Lassie
D33. Coconut Shake or Lassie
D34. Banana Shake or Lassie
D35. Chocolate Shake or Lassie
D36. Choco-Nut Shake or Lassie
D37. Mango Shake or Lassie
D38. Papaya Shake or Lassie
D39. Pineapple Shake or Lassie
Smoothies & Slushes
D40. Mango-Passion Smoothie or Slush
D41. Papaya-Lime Smoothie or Slush
D42. Kombucha Glass (plain, lemon, ginger): 15
D43. Kombucha Bottle 1L: 45
D44. Mood Food Power Smoothie (38)
D45. Maca-Chia Shake (34)
D46. Chia-Choco-Nut Shake (34)
D47. Vanilla Bliss (32)
D48. Coconut Bliss (32)
Pies & Other Sweet Things
DT1. Sweet Crepes with Almond Cream: 42
DT2. Black Island in Coconut Milk: 34
DT3. Raw Cacao-Tahini Pie: 34
DT4. Raw Pumpkin Pie: 34
DT5. Raw Lemon Pie: 34
DT6. Raw Banana Cream Pie: 34
DT18. Coconut Yogurt Bowl: 14
DT19. Cow Milk Yogurt Bowl: 10
DT7. Raw Brownie Monster Ice Cup: 34
DT8. Mood Food Fruit Parfait: 32
DT9. Banana Boat: 32
DT10. Power Brownie: 24 / with Frozen Yogurt, Chocolate Ice Cream: 27
DT11. Exotic Mango-Passion Ice Cup: 25
DT12. Papaya-Lime Ice Cup: 25
DT13. Raw Chocolate Mudslide: 25
DT14. Choco-Mint Mudslide: 25
DT15. Choco-Mint-Spirulina Mudslide: 25
DT16. Sesame-Spirulina Mudslide: 25
DT17. Chocolate Ice Cream or Frozen Yogurt (3 scoops): 18
Portions added to your meals or drinks
Mood Food Vision
“Mood Food Energy Café” is the first restaurant in Yangshuo, which the main goal is to support power, health and healing. Here we really want to apply two main principles that state: “Don’t live to eat but eat to live” and “Make your food your medicine”.
On the menu can be found international recipes designed only with healthy ingredients and cooking methods. Among the methods we chose to offer raw food, steamed, and lightly stir-fried meals without sacrificing the pleasure of your palate.
We also offer what is now commonly called “Superfoods”, which are a selection of food coming from various parts of the world that are recognized as having extraordinary life supporting properties.
“Mood Food Energy Café” is one of all the elements promoted and taught by the “Inner Happiness Health Center”, which in collaboration with the Wandering Dao Qi Gong School offer a complete self-healing curriculum. As a Center we intend to share information with our guests so in the following you will find some literature that should help you understand our choices and that may inspire you to initiate your journey into “conscious eating and living”.
FOOD PROPERTIES INDEX
Education and accessing information are the main means to support the most radical changes. Food carries information and strong elements to support or destroy ones health. Nowadays we are sold by the strength of marketing products that benefit more the corporations than our health, as their main goal is to come up with products for the least cost and for this they choose the way of chemistry to boost flavors and to influence our own chemistry and create addictions. Those chemicals cannot be recognized by the body cells and are perceived as an invader. This triggers an automatic elimination response that overtime exhausts the body functions. On the following pages, we display the various products we choose and use in our kitchen, and explain to you why so you can learn, understand, get inspired… and eat more consciously.
The nutrient density of raw cacao is amazing! It benefits every function of the body. One of the many cool facts about chocolate is that it is the highest source of magnesium and chromium of any food! Magnesium is the most deficient mineral in the average human. All the compounds found in raw cacao benefit longevity in humans.
~Vitamin A ~Vitamin B (1, 2, 3, 5 and 6) ~Vitamin C ~Vitamin E ~Magnesium ~Copper ~Calcium ~Manganese ~Zinc ~Sulphur ~Iron ~Chromium ~Phosphorus ~Omega 6 Fatty Acids ~Saturated Fats ~Amino Acids ~Carbohydrates ~Soluble Fiber (which is the type people need more of) ~Enzymes (including catalase, lipase and amylase)
Raw Cacao, with 10,000 milligrams of flavanol antioxidants per bean, may be one of the most antioxidant-rich foods available. It gives 20 times more antioxidants than red wine and 30 times more than green tea. By contrast, roasted cacao beans can lose up to 80 percent of their antioxidant content. Antioxidants help prevent oxidation of cholesterol, which can lead to arterial plaque formation.
Raw Cacao contains more magnesium than any other plant. This mineral is deficient in most developed populations It helps increase flexibility and muscle relaxation, is good for your heart and makes your bones strong. Magnesium also assists with detoxification and alkalizes your body.
Chromium in raw cacao helps maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Raw cocoa contains 10 times as much chromium as whole wheat. To derive the most health benefits, consume raw cacao in the form of dark chocolate, which contains less sugar and milk and a greater nutrient density than milk chocolate.
Chocolate is widely regarded as good mood food and contains several chemicals that are known to alter brain function. Raw cacao is one of the few plants that contains theobromine, a relative of caffeine, though with a weaker stimulant effect. Phenylethylamine in cocoa is the same as a molecule that your brain releases when you are happy or excited. Anandamide, a brain chemical that positively influences your mood, memory and appetite and decreases your perception of pain, is also found in raw cacao. Raw cacao contains considerable amounts of the amino acid tryptophan, which your body converts to the calming neurotransmitter serotonin.
Chia is packed full of antioxidants, with studies showing 3 times the amounts contained in blueberries!
Chia contains twice the amount of potassium as a banana, and 3 times as much iron as spinach.
Chia is very high in protein, and rich in omega-3 oils, absolutely vital for a healthy brain, and making it a great supplement for vegetarians who may struggle to get their daily recommended doses.
Chia is high in fibre, and extremely absorbent, aiding digestion, and allowing the body more time to ingest water as the seeds pass through our system.
The trace minerals found in Chia are wide ranging, and include calcium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc and magnesium- all vital for a healthy body.
Reports suggest that chia seeds may help weight loss, by slowing the speed our bodies break down carbohydrates, which stabilizes blood sugar levels, and even by blocking some uptake of calories. And since the seeds retain so much water, they can help a dieter feel fuller for longer! Studies show that chia seeds can lower cholesterol and blood pressure, since it contains alpha-linolenic acid, which reduces plaque build-up in arteries. Chia may aid sleep; it contains tryptophan, an amino acid that works with serotonin in the brain to naturally promote sleep. Chia also seems to be appreciated by its fans for its pleasant nutty taste, which similar grains, like wheatgrass, do not seem to have.
Maca root (Lepidium meyenii) has many health benefits. Known for their advanced knowledge of healing and the body’s connection with nature, the Incan civilization used the maca root in many of their natural remedies. According to ancient Incan history, the maca root was known to have special properties, which were believed to enhance energy and stamina. It is also believed to increase the sexual desire and endurance. Maca is often termed as Peruvian Ginseng due to its natural stimulating qualities that are similar to the benefits found in the commonly known ginseng-related herbs. The maca root can be found growing in the Andes Mountains, mainly in Peru. The environment, which is deemed ideal for its growth, is in uncongenial locations which are located high in the mountains. Maca flourishes in such climates due to its ability to thrive in spite of harsh temperatures and frost. Maca is related to the mustard plant, and has similarities in appearance. The flowers of the maca resemble those of the mustard plant. It is not uncommon for farmers and /or those who are knowledgeable in horticulture to mistake the identity of either plant at first glance. Medicinally, the part of the maca that holds the active nutrients is the flesh of its root. The nutritional contents of the maca root are impressive. The root or tuber is high in protein, natural sugars, iron, potassium, iodine, magnesium, calcium, and fiber. Due to maca’s high nutritional content, it is often referred to as having “Superfood” properties.
Libido & Fertility
Culturally, the ancient Peruvians ingested this powerful root to boost the potency of the male libido. Its natural properties help to create an aphrodisiac-like response in men who have suffered from impotency, low sex-drive, and fertility problems. The maca root is known to improve the quality and quantity of sperm in men who have lower than normal sperm counts, which helps to increase the level of fertility.
Athletically speaking, the main ingredients and naturally occurring substances in maca are becoming widely used by today’s amateur and professional athletes alike. The main action of this powerful Superfood is to strengthen endurance and energy levels, which gives the athlete a natural advantage. Testosterone also seems to be increased as well.
Over time, other uses for maca have also shown promising benefits to health such as relief of fatigue and the reduction of menopausal symptoms in women. One of the most troublesome symptoms of menopause is hot flashes. The active ingredients in the maca root appear to lessen the severity and frequency of hot flashes that occur due to hormonal changes in a woman’s body as they reach middle age. Maca root helps to bring back into balance the body’s natural hormone levels without the use of synthetic hormone replacements that are typical treatments for menopausal symptoms.
Menstrual problems that often plague women of childbearing age such as cramping, heavy or irregular periods, as well as PMS, have found that the maca root alleviates many of the uncomfortable symptoms.
For both men and women alike, skin problems such as acne have been drastically improved with the use of maca.
Another essential benefit of the maca root is its known ability to relieve mild depression. There is an increase in the body’s levels of serotonin in individuals using maca. Common treatments for depression are antidepressant medications, which tend to have uncomfortable side effects such as weight gain, fatigue, and dulled senses. Maca has none of the side effects that are found in pharmaceutical antidepressants. In fact, the active ingredients in the maca root boost energy and lift depression naturally. The benefits of the ancient Peruvian maca root continue through the present day as a leading superfood health enhancer. For those who have benefited from its health properties, maca comes highly recommended as a time-tested source of health.
The strength of the active ingredients in maca varies, yet the typical dosage is 500mg. twice daily. Maca generally comes in capsule form. However, many herbalists prefer maca in powder form. The powdered maca preparation is one tablespoon per 5 grams.
The name “Superfood” certainly applies to Spirulina. Though not technically an herb (actually an cyanobacteria), it boasts its fair share of health promoting properties. It is rich in in Chlorophyll, and like plants, gets its energy from the sun. Spirulina is a natural “algae” (cyanbacteria) powder that is incredible high in protein and nutrients. When harvested correctly from non-contaminated ponds and bodies of water, it is one of the most potent nutrient sources available. It is largely made up of protein and essential amino acids, and I typically recommend it to clients who decide to remain vegetarian for its high natural iron content. It is often touted for its high B-12 content, though there is a lot of debate about if this particular form is a complete and absorbable form of B-12 and I don’t recommend it completely in place of animal products. The high concentration of protein and iron also makes it idea during pregnancy, after surgery or anytime the immune system needs a boost.
Though it does taste like pond scum, Spirulina has some great health-boosting qualities:
- Spirulina is 65% protein and amino acids including the essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid (GLA) which has gotten a lot of attention for its anti-inflammatory properties, especially when taken with other quality Omega-3 supplements like Fermented Cod Liver Oil. (I suspect that the benefits of GLA in Spirulina are even more than what the studies have found since these studies often use vegetable oils for their GLA source, and the other inflammatory compounds in vegetable oils can interfere with the anti-inflammatory ability.) It contains all essential amino acids.
- Spirulina contains Omega 3-6 and 9s and is especially high in Omega-3s.
- Spirulina is extremely high in Chlorophyll, which helps remove toxins from the blood and boost the immune system.
- Spirulina has a very high concentration of bio-available iron and is excellent during pregnancy and for those with anemia and will not cause constipation.
- Spirulina is a great source of other nutrients including (according to Wikipedia): “Spirulina contains vitamins B-1(thiamine), B-2 (riboflavin), B-3 (nicotinamide), B-6 (pyridoxine), B-9 (folic acid), vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin A and vitamin E. It is also a source of potassium, calcium, chromium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, sodium and zinc. Spirulina contains many pigments which may be beneficial and bioavailable”
- This Spirulina was tested be an independent laboratory and found to have an ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) of over 24,000 which is 4x the ORAC score of blueberries. The ORAC score is generally used to measure antioxidant ability and concentration in different foods.
- Spirulina is also incredibly high in calcium with over 26 times the calcium in milk, making it excellent for children, the elderly and during pregnancy.
- Some research has suggested that Spirulina may be helpful in allergies and allergic reactions.
- Spirulina’s phosphorus content makes it helpful as part of a tooth re-mineralization regimen.
- Emerging evidence suggests that it binds with radioactive isotopes and may be useful for radioactivity exposure or radiation therapy.
- The protein in Spirulina is highly usable and has a net protein utilization rate of between 50-61%
- Spirulina can bind with heavy metals in the body and help remove them.
- Spirulina can increase fat burning during exercise.
Bee pollen is a holistic remedy used throughout the world. Unfortunately the vast amount of uses that pollen can be used for are often overlooked.
What is Pollen?
Bee Pollen is made by honeybees, and is the food of the young bee. It is considered one of nature’s most completely nourishing foods as it contains nearly all nutrients required by humans. Bee-gathered pollens are rich in proteins (approximately 40% protein), free amino acids, vitamins, including B-complex, and folic acid. Bee pollen is a complete food and contains many elements that products of animal origin do not possess. Bee pollen is richer in proteins than any animal source. It contains more amino acids than beef, eggs, or cheese of equal weight. About half of its protein is in the form of free amino acids that are ready to be used directly by the body. It is important to recognize that a one-teaspoon dose of pollen takes one bee working eight hours a day for one month to gather. Each bee pollen pellet contains over two million flower pollen grains and one teaspoonful contains over 2.5 billion grains of flower pollen. Here are just 10 great reasons to add fresh bee pollen to your daily diet… although there are many more!
- Energy Enhancer – The range of nutrients found within bee pollen makes it a great natural energizer. The carbohydrates, protein and B vitamins can help keep you going all day by enhancing stamina and fighting off fatigue.
- Skin Soother – Bee pollen is often used in topical products that aim to treat inflammatory conditions and common skin irritations like psoriasis or eczema. The amino acids and vitamins protect the skin and aid the regeneration of cells.
- Respiratory System – Bee pollen contains a high quantity of antioxidants that may have an anti-inflammatory effect on the tissues of the lungs, preventing the onset of asthma.
- Treating Allergies – Pollen reduces the presence of histamine, ameliorating many allergies. Everything from asthma to allergies to sinus problems were cleared, confirming that bee pollen is wonderfully effective against a wide range of respiratory diseases.
- Digestive System – In addition to healthful vitamins, minerals and protein, bee pollen contains enzymes that can aid in digestion. Enzymes assist your body in getting all the nutrients you need from the food that you eat.
- Immune System Booster – Pollen is good for the intestinal flora and thereby supports the immune system. Bee pollen has antibiotic-type properties that can help protect the body from contracting viruses. It’s also rich in antioxidants that protect the cells from the damaging oxidation of free radicals.
- Treats Addictions – Used holistically for healing addictions and inhibiting cravings by suppressing impulses. Because bee pollen crashes cravings, it is a very useful research is needed into this benefit, particularly when it comes to weight management.
- Supports the Cardiovascular System – Bee Pollen contains large amounts of Rutin; an antioxidant bioflavonoid that helps strengthen capillaries, blood vessels, assists with circulatory problems and corrects cholesterol levels. Its potent anti-clotting powers could help prevent heart attack and stroke.
- Prostate Aid – Men who suffer from benign prostate hyperplasia can find relief by using bee pollen. Bee pollen can help reduce inflammation to stop frequent urges to urinate.
- Infertility Problems – Bee pollen stimulates and restores ovarian function, therefore may be used to assist in accelerating pregnancy. As well as being a hormonal booster it is also a great aphrodisiac!
How Should Bee Pollen Be Consumed?
Bee pollen is a food and acts faster and more effectively when taken at mealtime and especially with fruit, which lets it gently, perform a little cleansing of the intestinal flora. A spoonful at breakfast, preferably taken with a piece of fruit: the fruit fibers (raw hemicellulose) reinforce the activity of the fresh pollen. You’ll be pleased to know that beekeepers are able to remove pollen from hives without harming the bees or disturbing their routine.
Forty points about wheatgrass and its nutritional values
- Wheatgrass juice is one of the best sources of living chlorophyll available.
- Chlorophyll is the first product of light and, therefore, contains more light energy than any other element.
- Wheatgrass juice is a crude chlorophyll and can be taken orally and as a colon implant without toxic side effects.
- Chlorophyll is the basis of all plant life.
- Wheatgrass is high in oxygen like all green plants that contain chlorophyll. The brain and all body tissues function at an optimal level in a highly oxygenated environment.
- Chlorophyll is anti-bacterial and can be used inside and outside the body to improve health.
- Dr. Bernard Jensen says that it only takes minutes to digest wheatgrass juice and uses up very little body energy.
- Science has proven that chlorophyll arrests growth and development of unfriendly bacteria
- Chlorophyll (wheatgrass) rebuilds the bloodstream. Studies of various animals have shown chlorophyll to be free of any toxic reaction. The red cell count was returned to normal within 4 to 5 days of the administration of chlorophyll, even in those animals, which were known to be extremely anemic or low in red cell count.
- Farmers in the Midwest who have sterile cows and bulls put them on wheatgrass to restore fertility. (The high magnesium content in chlorophyll builds enzymes that restore the sex hormones).
- Chlorophyll can be extracted from many plants, but wheatgrass is superior because it has been found to have over 100 elements needed by man. If grown in organic soil, it absorbs 92 of the known 102 minerals from the soil.
- Wheatgrass has what is called the grass-juice factor, which has been shown to keep herbivorous animals alive far longer than would be expected.
- Dr. Ann Wigmore has been helping people get well from chronic disorders for 30 years using wheatgrass.
- Liquid chlorophyll gets into the tissues, refines them and makes them over.
- Wheatgrass juice is a superior detoxification agent compared to carrot juice and other fruits and vegetables. Dr. Earp-Thomas, associate of Ann Wigmore, says that 15 pounds of wheatgrass is the equivalent of 350 pounds of carrot, lettuce, celery and so forth.
- Liquid chlorophyll washes drug deposits from the body.
- Chlorophyll neutralizes toxins in the body.
- Chlorophyll helps purify the liver.
- Chlorophyll improves blood sugar problems.
- In the American Journal of Surgery recommends chlorophyll for its antiseptic benefits. The article suggests the following clinical uses for chlorophyll to clear up foul smelling odors, neutralize strep infections, heal wounds, hasten skin grafting, cure chronic sinusitis, overcome chronic inner-ear inflammation and infection, reduce varicose veins and heal leg ulcers, eliminate impetigo and other scabby eruptions, heal rectal sores, successfully treat inflammation of the uterine cervix, get rid of parasitic vaginal infections, reduce typhoid fever, and cure advanced pyorrhea in many cases.
- Wheatgrass juice works for acne and even removes scars after it has been ingested for seven to eight months. The diet must be improved at the same time.
- Wheatgrass juice acts as a detergent in the body and is used as a body deodorant.
- A small amount of wheatgrass juice in the human diet prevents tooth decay.
- Wheatgrass juice held in the mouth for 5 minutes will eliminate toothaches. It pulls poisons from the gums.
- Gargle wheatgrass juice for a sore throat.
- Drink wheatgrass juice for skin problems such as eczema or psoriasis.
- Wheatgrass juice keeps the hair from greying.
- Pyorrhea of the mouth: Lay pulp of wheatgrass soaked in juice on diseased area in mouth or chew wheatgrass, spitting out the pulp.
- By taking wheatgrass juice, one may feel a difference in strength, endurance, health and spirituality – and experience a sense of well-being.
- Wheatgrass juice improves digestion.
- Wheatgrass juice is high in enzymes.
- Wheatgrass juice is an excellent skin cleanser and can be absorbed through the skin for nutrition. Pour green juice over your body in a tub of warm water and soak for 15-20 minutes, rinse with cold water.
- Wheatgrass implants (enemas) are great for healing and detoxifying the colon walls. The implants also improve and cleanse the internal organs. After an enema, wait 20 minutes then implant 4 ounces of wheatgrass juice. Retain for 20 minutes.
- Wheatgrass juice is great for constipation and keeping the bowels open. It is high in magnesium.
- Research scientists, called chlorophyll ‘concentrated sunpower’. They believe that chlorophyll increases the function of the heart, affects the vascular system, the intestines, the uterus and the lungs.
- Nature uses chlorophyll (wheatgrass) as a body cleanser, re-builder and neutralizer of toxins.
- Wheatgrass juice can dissolve the scars that are formed in the lungs from breathing acid gasses. The effect of carbon monoxide is minimized since chlorophyll increases hemoglobin production.
- Wheatgrass juice reduces high blood pressure and enhances the capillaries.
- Wheatgrass juice can remove heavy metals from the body.
- Wheatgrass juice is great for blood disorders of all kinds.
Wheat Germ is one of the most widely advertised healthy grains. It represents the reproductive part of the grain that germinates into wheat grass. The germ represents just a small portion of the wheat kernel. This amazing grain contains a host of nutrients. Below is a list of some of these nutrients and their role in good health.
This wonder grain is very rich in protein. Almost 30 percent of wheat germ is protein. It has more protein than what is available in most meat products. Protein plays a vital role in various growth and development functions in the body. They help repair tissues and sustain mucous membranes. Proteins also facilitate the distribution of nutrients to cells throughout the body.
Wheat germ has the highest quantities of iron and potassium amongst all known food sources. Iron is crucial for a healthy blood condition. It assists in the manufacturing of red and white blood cells. Red blood cells play a vital role in the distribution of oxygen throughout the body. White blood cells play a crucial role in the immune system, helping to fight off infections and diseases. Potassium sustains strong, healthy teeth and bones.
Wheat germ helps to lower bad cholesterol levels, improving heart health. It facilitates the distribution of oxygen during exercise and provides endurance. This enables better results from exercise. It also helps prevents muscular disorders.
Omega-3 and Omega-6
Essential fatty acids play a vital role in brain and heart health. Omega-3 supports various cognitive and behavioral functions. This enhances memory and performance. Fatty acids also help to manage healthy blood cholesterol levels. Cardiovascular health is improved and the risk of stroke and heart disease is lowered.
These play an important role in the body’s metabolism and energy production. When the body’s metabolism is strong, more calories are burned. This enables weight loss, which contributes to better health. It also lowers the risk of diabetes, stroke and heart disease. B vitamins help in the repair and growth of tissues, sustain muscular health and also regulate the nervous system.
Wheat germ has various antioxidant properties. Vitamin E helps to forestall blood clots and strengthens the immune system. It supports the health and functions of the reproductive organs in both sexes. Vitamin E has been established as a helpful treatment in cases of male impotence. The skin also benefits from this vitamin. It helps to restore damaged skin and contributes to soft, smooth and healthy skin. Vitamin E is a widely recognized anti-aging agent.
Wheat germ is an excellent source of fiber. This enables the digestive system to perform at its optimum level. Dietary fiber helps to cleanse the digestive tract of toxins and prevents the build-up of harmful waste products. Fiber helps to prevent constipation and supports better bowel movement. It also contributes to a sense of being full, which helps to reduce food intake. Great if you’re on a diet!
- Stevia herb parts are very low in calories. Parts by parts its dry leaves are roughly 40 times sweeter than sugar. The sweetness of sugar in stevia is due to several glycoside compounds including stevioside, steviolbioside, rebaudiosides A-E, and dulcoside.
- Stevioside is non-carbohydrate glycoside compound. Hence, it lack of properties that sucrose and other carbohydrates have. Stevia extracts, like rebaudioside-A, are found to be 300 times sweeter than sugar. In contrast to sugar, however, stevia extracts have several unique properties such as long shelf life, high temperature tolerance, non-fermentative; but contain near-zero calories.
- In addition, stevia plant has many sterols and antioxidant compounds like triterpenes, flavonoids, and tannins. Some of flavonoid polyphenolic anti-oxidant phyto-chemicals present in stevia is kaempferol, quercetin, chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, isoquercitrin, isosteviol…etc. Studies found that kaempferol can reduce risk of pancreatic cancer by 23% (American journal of epidemiology) .
- Chlorgenic acid reduces enzymatic conversion of glycogen to glucose in addition to decreasing absorption of glucose in the gut. Thus, it helps reduce blood sugar levels. The lab studies also confirm a reduction in blood glucose levels and an increase in the liver concentrations of glucose-6-phosphate and of glycogen.
- Certain glycosides in stevia extract have been found to dilate blood vessels, increase sodium excretion, and urine output. In effect, stevia, at slightly higher doses than as sweetener, can help lower blood pressure.
- Being a non-carbohydrate sweetener, stevia would not favor the growth of Streptococcus mutans bacteria in the mouth which is attributed to be a causative agent for dental caries and tooth cavities. On the other hand, certain compounds in stevia are rather found to inhibit caries causing bacteria in the mouth.
- In addition, being a herb, stevia contain many vitals minerals, vitamins that are selectively absent in the artificial sweeteners.
Stevia extract has been in use by native South Americans (where it is known as caa-he-éé or kaa jheéé) to reduce weight; to treat wound infections, inflammatory conditions, swelling in the legs and as a tonic to treat depression.
Kombucha has been praised in many Asian cultures and has now reached the recognition of the whole world. It has been claimed that Kombucha increase longevity, cures cancer, rheumatism, bronchitis, asthma, kidney illnesses, cataracts, cardiac illnesses, diabetes, diarrhea, insomnia, prolongs sexual appetite and performance, lowers hypertension. Kombucha has been shown to be antimicrobial, to have qualities to protect the liver, and to be a powerful antioxidant. For centuries Kombucha has been recognized to increase energy, sharpens eyesight, aids joint recovery, improves skin elasticity, aids general digestion but specially improves the digestive experience with sticky foods like rice or noodles. Elements present in Kombucha promote the natural detoxification of the liver and provide a strong source of Pro-Biotic, vitamin B-Complex that enhances the immune system, promotes digestion and repels mosquitoes. Kombucha is alkalizing hence providing a good foundation to simply maintain a good health.
Almond milk contains more nutrients than other dairy milk alternatives like rice milk. The health benefits provided by this option even match dairy choices. Almond milk works as a great alternative for those with soy and lactose allergies.
Here are 6 benefits of almond milk:
Benefit #1: Weight Management
Plain almond milk without added sugars or flavoring contains 60 calories per each 8 oz serving size. This option works well for people looking to lose or maintain weight. The low caloric content of almond milk causes less of an impact on our totally daily consumption of food calories. Some milk varieties contain more sugars than the cereal that they get combined with.
Benefit #2: Heart Health
Almond milk contains no cholesterol and only 5 mg of sodium per serving. Consuming foods low in sodium and cholesterol help us to maintain better heart health and normal blood pressure. Without cholesterol, almond milk also decreases our chances of gaining bad cholesterol levels, all while increasing the good cholesterol levels. Almond milk also contains 150 mg of potassium in every serving. This mineral works to promote healthy blood pressure.
Benefit #3: Blood Sugar Friendly
Unlike other milk alternatives, the plain almond option contains only 8 grams of carbohydrates per serving. The 7 grams of sugars that make up the carbohydrate content have a limited affect on our blood sugar levels. When we consume simple sugars, our metabolic functions tend to miss the nutrients, storing much of the carbs as fat. Instead, the low amount of sugars in almond milk have a low glycemic nature, meaning our bodies fully digest them and use them as energy. Diabetics benefit from this characteristic as well.
Benefit #4: Bone Health
Almond milk contains 30% of our recommended daily value of calcium and 25% of Vitamin D. These nutrients work together to build strong bones in men, women, children and infants. Vitamin D also helps improve immunity and cell function. Some studies have shown that Vitamin D helps decrease osteoporosis and even Alzheimer’s disease. The magnesium in found in almond milk helps absorb more of the calcium provided by the nutritious beverage.
Benefit #5: Skin Care
Every serving of pure almond milk contains 50% of our recommended daily value of Vitamin E. This powerful nutrient has antioxidant abilities in that it helps regulate Vitamin A use and availability. More importantly, Vitamin E acts the primary regulatory nutrient that improves skin health.
Benefit #5: Eye Health
The moderate levels of Vitamin A found in almond milk helps keep our eyes functioning properly. Vitamin A directly influences the eye’s ability to adjust to differences in light.
Even though almond milk only contains 1 gram of protein per serving, it does contain B Vitamins in the form of riboflavin, plus other muscle regulating nutrients like iron. Each serving of almond milk contains about 4% of our recommended daily intake of iron, which helps muscles absorb and use protein for energy, growth and repair. Iron also regulates certain cell functions like oxygen absorption.
Moringa Olifeira is among the popular power greens such as wheat grass, chlorella and spirulina. Moringa is rich in minerals like potassium, iron, calcium, and sulfur. It has B vitamins and 10 amino acids. Its nutritional profile is competitive with any beneficial plant on the planet. For example:
- One half cup of cooked leaves will meet your daily recommendation for Vitamins A and C.
- 12 gms of raw leaves contains the recommended daily amount of Vitamin C
- Gram per gram it contains 6 to 7 times the amount of Vitamin C in orange juice.
- Moringa leaves contain 3 to 5 times more beta-carotene than carrots
- 15gm of moringa powder contains more than 10 times the recommended daily amount of Vitamin E
- Gram per gram Moringa leaves contain over 3 times the iron as found in spinach or roast beef
- Moringa leaves contain 3 times the amount of potassium as bananas
- Gram per gram Moringa leaves contain 4 times the amount of calcium found in milk
- One half cup of pods (raw) will supply your Vitamin C requirement for a day.
Not bad for a humble plant also known as the ‘Miracle Tree’.
8 Sources of Refined Sugar
There was a time, long ago, when sugar was a rare luxury, reserved in small quantities only for the rare few who could afford it. These days, we have it in such abundance that it’s as if food manufacturers are sneaking it into anything they can just to get rid of it. The American Heart Association recommends no more than six teaspoons of sugar a day for the average woman, and no more than nine teaspoons for the average man. Yet on average, American adults consume 22 teaspoons per day, while the kids are scarfing down a daily average of 32 teaspoons. (Note: Four grams of sugar is equivalent to one teaspoon.) All the while, rates of obesity and diabetes have risen on a scale that corresponds neatly to our increasing consumption of sugar. There are a number of doctors and experts who suggest that sugar goes beyond the dangers of cavities and corpulence. In fact, they argue, sugar is a disrupting toxin that harms our organs and hormonal cycles, and most likely is mostly to blame for the obesity epidemic, as well as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. So how did we get here? Most of the added sugar we consume comes in packaged food; early on, manufacturers learned that the more sugar something contains, the better it seems to sell. And although we know to expect plenty of sugar in cookie dough ice cream, for example, who knew that many seemingly healthy food are also chock full of it? Naturally occurring sugars, like those in fruit and milk, are generally accompanied by nutrients; added sugars are the naughty ones that need to be minded. They come in many disguise on the ingredient list. The Harvard School of Public Health cautions to look out for these code words for added sugar: agave nectar, brown sugar, cane crystals, cane sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, crystalline fructose, dextrose, evaporated cane juice, fructose, fruit juice concentrates, glucose, high fructose corn syrup, honey, invert sugar, lactose, maltose, malt syrup, molasses, raw sugar, sucrose, sugar and syrup.
1. Barbecue sauce
You might as well be brushing your grilled foods with chocolate syrup. One popular brand of barbecue sauce offers 15 grams of sugar in two tablespoons; yes, that’s almost four teaspoons of sugar in two tablespoons of sauce. For comparison, chocolate syrup typically has about 19 grams of sugar in the same serving size.
2. Nutrition bars
What a great concept, the nutrition bar: a handy portable snack bursting with nutrients. But wait! In our survey of 7 nutrition bars that are worse than candy, we present one nutrition bar that has the audacity to include 32 grams of sugar — 8 teaspoons, that is — all in the name of “nutrition.” And there were many more that were found to be nearly as sinful.
3. Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is a fantastic and low-fat source of lycopene, an important compound associated with reduced risk of cancer, as well as a bevy of other fetching vitamins and antioxidants. When you make a batch at home, you can add a pinch of sugar to a large pot of simmering sauce and it works wonders to enhance the flavor. But in one of the greater mysteries of the modern world, makers of tomato sauce feel compelled to pump it up with sugar; some leading brands have as much as 15 grams per half-cup serving, and few people only use half a cup of sauce. Can you imagine sprinkling more than four teaspoons of sugar on your dinner?
4. Flavored yogurt
The calcium, protein and beneficial probiotics in yogurt make it a great choice; the added sugar? Not so much. Typically, a 6-ounce container of plain yogurt has about 12 grams of naturally occurring sugar in the form of lactose – since nutrition labels don’t require the separation of naturally occurring and added sugars; the consumer has to do a little math to figure out the added sugar. So, for example, if you subtract 12 grams from the 28 grams of sugars listed on the Yoplait Thick and Creamy Blackberry Harvest label, you know that the product contains 16 grams of added sugar. That’s four teaspoons of added sugar in a six-ounce serving.
5. Fruit juice
Sometimes fruit juice isn’t really fruit juice; it may have some fruit in it, but it may also just be glorified sugar water. Again, since labels don’t differentiate between added and naturally occurring sugar, it may be hard to tell by the sugar grams alone. But you might suspect something is up with, for example, V8 Splash products, which ring in at the 18-grams-of-sugar range for an eight-ounce serving. (Four and a half teaspoons of sugar in a regular size glass of juice.) The smoking gun here is hidden in the ingredient list: the first two ingredients are water and high fructose corn syrup.
6. Grown-up breakfast cereal
Anyone with properly functioning neurons might deduce that a children’s breakfast cereal – let’s say, one that offers a rainbow of neon-colored loops and “fruity shaped marshmallows” (that’s almost as good as fruit, right?) – is fairly loaded with sugar. But some adult breakfast cereals are not much better; they may come in sedate boxes and be lacking in candy-colored hues, but don’t be fooled. Some of the leading brands that emanate health in their packaging contain at least 17 grams of sugar in one serving.
7. Vitamin drinks
Water infused with vitamins and antioxidants sounds like a good idea, but it seems that water infused with vitamins and antioxidants and eight teaspoons of sugar is an easier sell. Popular brands of vitamin and antioxidant water regularly deliver up to 32 grams of sugar in a 20-ounce bottle. While that’s less sugar than is found in most sodas, it’s still eight teaspoons of sugar in your “healthy” drink.
Somewhere along the road, muffins swerved out of control and went from being responsible, bran-and-fruit packed snacks into cupcakes for grown ups. They may not have frosting and sprinkles, but other than that there may be little difference. For instance, let’s say you were to find yourself at a Dunkin Donuts and decided to opt for the healthier choice of a muffin over a donut. You might have a sneaking suspicion that the Coffee Cake muffin is really just coffee cake in a cup shape; and with its 51 grams of sugar — almost 13 teaspoons worth — you’d be correct. But would you suspect that the freshly baked Honey Bran Raisin muffin weighs in at 40 grams of sugar? 10 teaspoons? Three glazed donuts have one teaspoon less sugar than the Honey Bran Raisin muffin.
Here are 10 reasons to use and love coconut oil:
1. All Fats Are Not Created Equal
Coconut oil contains short term medium-chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs), which is a “healthy” form saturated fat compared to trans fat. Trans fatty acid consumption is linked with heart problems, depression and increased cholesterol levels. What does consuming MCFA fats in coconut oil mean for your body? Our body metabolises these fats in the liver, immediately coverting this into energy (fuel for the brain and muscle function) rather than it being stored as fat.
2. Helps Control Weight
One 2009 study looked at the weight loss link between women’s consumption of coconut oil and found that it reduces abdominal obesity. Researchers discovered coconut oil is easy to digest and also protects the body from insulin resistance. To try coconut oil for weight loss start by adding one teaspoon to your diet and gradually work your way up to four teaspoons per day.
3. Eases Digestion
If you suffer from poor digestion or tummy bloating try adding coconut oil to your diet. Coconut oil has been found to benefit digestive disorders including irritable bowel syndrome and microbial related tummy bugs. Fatty acids in coconut oil contain anti microbial properties, which have a soothing affect on bacteria, candida, or parasites that cause poor digestion.
4. Manage type 2 Diabetes
A recent study by the Garvan Institute of Medical Research found that coconut oil protects against insulin resistance, reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes. MCFA fats are small enough to be absorbed into the cells where they’re quickly converted to energy. It is this process that not only reduces the amount of fat we pack into storage, but improves insulin sensitivity.
5. Supports Immunity
Coconut oil is made up of healthy fats lauric acid, caprylic acid and capric acid which contain antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral prosperities to boost the immune system. Lauric acid contains the highest concentration of MCFA fatty acids, approximately 75 per cent. The body turn this fat into monolaurin which is claimed to help heal viruses such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, helicobacter pylori and candida.
6. Boost Metabolism
A study reported in the Journal of Nutrition found that coconut oil boosts metabolism. Researchers found that participants who consumed two tablespoons of coconut oil per day burned more kilojoules than those who consumed less. A speedy metabolism helps boost the body’s immune system and keep weight off.
7. Slows Fine Lines
Coconut is not just for your cooking – it’s a wonderfully hydrating treat for skin too. It keeps the skin’s connective tissues strong, which prevents sagging and wrinkles. Apply coconut oil directly to your skin to soften the appearance of fine lines or use it daily on your face and body for a healthy glow. Be sure you use virgin coconut oil with no additives.
8. Cooks In High Temperatures
Because coconut oil is a medium-chain saturated fatty acid, it gives it a higher smoking temperature than most polyunsaturated or monounsaturated oils. If you’re preparing recipes that require high temperatures you should consider coconut oil for this type of cooking. Unlike olive oil which will oxidise at high temperatures, creating free radicals.
9. Stops Sugar Cravings
Instead of reaching for the lollie jar for an afternoon sweet hit, try eating a teaspoon of virgin coconut oil to beat sugar cravings. This is because good quality fat is more satiating than carbs, so if you cut down on sugar you will feel less ‘ravenous’. Most of us do not realize but constant hunger is a major clue that your body is not being fed correctly. With the proper amounts of fats and protein, you can fuel your energy reserves properly, and come off the sugar roller coaster that many of us are on.
Of the many things we eat, few things are as evocative as sea salt. (To the poetically minded eater, at least.) A dash of the saline crystals can bring to mind the mysteries of the ocean … mermaids, tide pools, mythic sea gods, and ancient sailing ships, Greek islands. It’s the sea, condensed into grains we can hold between our fingertips. For many a foodie, it’s imbued with romance for its primal nature and the purity of its essence. But beyond the reverie it may incite, does salt harvested from the sea offer anything extra beyond what regular table salt provides? Some say it has less sodium, others say it has more minerals; some say its lack of iodine is a problem. Here’s how the facts bear out.
Sea salt is a low-impact food
Unlike some foods that are harsh to the environment, sea salt is relatively gentle because it’s produced by evaporating water from the ocean until all that remains is solid minerals. Much of it is harvested by hand (although there are larger operations in the Mediterranean). Table salt is made by solution mining, while salt is extracted from underground deposits and then purified. Mining is an extractive industry and disturbs the natural environment, and the waste stream from the mined salt industry has an impact as well.
Sea salt helps boost your minerals
With its minimal processing, sea salt retains many of its minerals. While all salt comes from the sea, salt that is mined comes from ancient seabeds and many of its minerals have dissipated — and the minerals that remain are lost in processing. Some sea salts have as many as 84 trace minerals, in addition to calcium, magnesium and potassium. Many other flavoring agents (like packaged seasoning mixes) have no minerals at all.
Sea salt decreases the additives you consume
Table salt is stripped of its minerals and has anti-caking agents, such as sodium aluminum silicate, or additive E-554. In fact, there are a total of 18 food additives that are allowed in salt. Sea salt contains no chemical additives. If you season with salt, you’ll get fewer chemicals in your food if you use the sea salt variety.
Although it has been reported that sea salt has less sodium than table salt, it’s not true. They both contain the same amount of sodium chloride by weight. However, sea salt has more flavor impact and so most people use less of it. The minerals enhance its flavor, and its larger grains deliver salty bursts in food, rather than the overall saltiness of fine table salt.
While the health benefits of oats are documented in hundreds of studies, we’ve listed just a sample here to indicate the power of oats to improve human health.
Oats May Reduce Asthma Risk in Children
While there is widespread belief that introducing solid foods to children too early may cause later health problems, a Finnish prospective study of 1293 children found that those introduced earlier to oats were in fact less likely to develop persistent asthma.
Oats May Boost Nutrition Profile of Gluten-free Diets
Two recent studies out of Scandinavia show that adding oats to a gluten-free diet may enhance the nutritional values of the diets, particularly for vitamins and minerals, as well as increasing antioxidant levels. Researchers asked 13 men and 18 women with Celiac disease to follow a gluten-free diet with the addition of kilned (stabilized) or unkilned oats. After six months, the addition of stabilized oats resulted in an increased intake of vitamin B1 and magnesium, while the unkilned oats increased intakes of magnesium and zinc. In the second study from Scandinavia, the addition of gluten-free oats allowed people on gluten-free diets to achieve their recommended daily intakes of fiber, as well as increasing levels of a particular antioxidant called bilirubin, which helps the body eliminate free radicals as well as protect the brain from oxidative damage.
Oats Increase Appetite-Control Hormones
Australian researchers studied fourteen people who ate a control meal and three different cereals with different levels of oat beta-glucan. They then collected blood samples for four hours after each meal, and found a significant dose response between higher levels of oat beta glucan and higher levels of Peptide Y-Y, a hormone associated with appetite control.
Oat Beta Glucans Improve Immune System Defenses
Italian researchers reviewed existing research about the positive effects of beta glucans on human health. They found that, in addition to reducing cholesterol and blunting glycemic and insulin response, beta glucans boost defenses of the immune system agains bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites.
Oats Help Cut the Use of Laxatives
Laxative use, especially among the elderly in nursing homes, can lead to malnutrition and unwanted weight loss. Viennese researchers studied 30 frail nursing-home residents in a controlled, blind, intervention trial where 15 patients received 7-8g of oat bran per day. At the end of 6 weeks, 59% of the oat group had discontinued laxative use while maintaining body weight; the control group showed an 8% increase in laxative use and a decrease in body weight.
Oats May Help Reduce the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Researchers in Mannheim, Germany carried out a dietary intervention with 14 patients who had uncontrolled type 2 diabetes and insulin resistance. The patients were introduced to a diabetes-appropriate diet containing oatmeal during a short hospital stay, then examined again four weeks later. On average, patients achieved a 40% reduction in insulin dosage – and maintained the reduction even after 4 weeks on their own at home.
Oats May Improve Insulin Sensitivity
Researchers in Chicago carried out a randomized, double-blind, controlled clinical trial of ninety-seven men and women, in which half of the group consumed foods containing oat beta-glucan, while the other half ate control foods. At the end of the trial period, the oat group showed improvements in insulin sensitivity, while the control group was unchanged.
Oats Lower Bad Cholesterol
Researchers at Colorado State University randomly assigned thirty-six overweight middle-aged men to eat either an oat or wheat cereal daily for twelve weeks. At the end of the three-month period, the men eating the oat cereal had lower concentrations of small, dense LDL cholesterol (thought to be particularly dangerous) and lower LDL overall, compared to those in the wheat group, while their HDL (“good”) cholesterol was unchanged.
Using a randomized, controlled parallel-group pilot study, researchers followed 18 hypertensive and hyperinsulemic men and women for six weeks, while half of them ate oat cereal (5.52g/day of beta-glucan) and the others ate a lower-fiber cereal (less than 1g total fiber). The oat group enjoyed a 7.5mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure and a 5.5 mm Hg reduction in diastolic blood pressure, while the wheat group was unchanged.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is said to be a natural remedy for many ailments. In 400 B.C.E Hippocrates (the father of modern medicine) knew about apple cider vinegar ‘s antibiotic properties and recommended it to his patients for its healing properties. Since then it’s been valued by many cultures right up to modern times. Apple cider vinegar has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties. Among the ailments it’s said to cure are allergies, acne, high cholesterol, joint pain, weight loss, rheumatism, arthritis, gout, dandruff, chronic fatigue, candida, sore throat, gum infection, sinus infection, flu, acid reflux, leg cramps and ear infections. It’s also used to help dissolve kidney stones, lower high blood pressure, and it’s also been shown to help with type-2 diabetes by improving insulin sensitivity. Even though vinegar is acidic, when we take apple cider vinegar, it has an alkaline effect in our bodies. The fact that apple cider vinegar causes our pH levels to become more alkaline could play a large part in it’s curative properties. It also reacts to some toxins in our bodies, converting them into less toxic substances. Our bodies need a slightly alkaline pH balance to be healthy. The typical Western diet creates an acidic pH in our bodies, and many health problems are attributed to this. Taking a tonic containing apple cider vinegar can help restore alkalinity, and therefore assist the body in getting rid of some of the health problems listed above. In researching the health benefits of apple cider vinegar I’ve found a lot of anecdotal evidence – stories from people of the beneficial effects of taking apple cider vinegar. There isn’t scientific evidence to back up all of these claims, but of course unless the studies have been done there won’t be. Lack of scientific evidence doesn’t imply that it doesn’t work. There was at least one study done on the effects of apple cider vinegar, which used acetic acid – the acid component of vinegars. Now, I’d argue that apple cider vinegar is more than just acetic acid. In fact, apple cider vinegar consists of both malic acid and acetic acid. Being made from apples it would also contain pectin, as well as potassium, which promote cell and tissue growth. Apple cider vinegar also contains almost all the minerals, vitamins and trace elements that our bodies need. Which leads me to suspect that some of the studies that are being done are fairly worthless exercises in determining the value of apple cider vinegar if they aren’t actually using apple cider vinegar in the study. Because science allows us to break things down into their component parts in order to understand how things work, I think too often scientists only see things as their component parts, missing the whole concept of the synergy found in nature. Everything has the potential to be more than the sum of its parts. The health benefits of apple cider vinegar will vary depending on the ingredients and process used in making it. Commercial production can use wood shavings, and other vinegars as the base (speeding fermentation), changing the makeup of the end product. You’ll get the greatest health benefits from apple cider vinegar that is made from organic apples, fermented using traditional methods, raw (unpasteurized) and unfiltered. If you can’t find good quality apple cider vinegar you could try making your own. This apple cider vinegar recipe has recipes for two methods of production. The one which uses whole apples will be of better quality for medicinal purposes, the one using scraps is quicker to make. You could make both so that you have something to use sooner while you wait for the whole apple batch to ferment. Be sure to avoid taking apple cider vinegar neat (undiluted) as it eats away at tooth enamel and can cause burns to the sensitive tissues in your mouth and throat. There have also been reports of apple cider vinegar supplements (in capsule form) causing permanent tissue damage of the esophagus. So use apple cider vinegar in liquid form, diluted with water. A simple tonic can be made from 1-2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar, 1-teaspoon honey in a cup of warm water.
Job’s Tears, also known as adlay and coix, is a member of the grass family and popular in Asian cultures as a food source and for making jewelry. But the plant has also been used for centuries in folk medicine to treat dozens of conditions from arthritis to smallpox. Scientific research investigating Job’s Tears hasn’t been conducted much outside China and Korea, but results from those studies are discovering properties in the plant that may have potent health benefits.
One of the traditional uses for Job’s Tears is to treat allergies, including topical preparations of plant extracts for an allergic skin condition called contact dermatitis. Research published in the “Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry” in June 2003 found that extracts from the plant also suppressed allergic reactions in laboratory mice and boosted their immune systems.
Diabetic mice were fed the seeds from Job’s Tears plants along with a high-cholesterol diet for four weeks in a study published in the “International Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research” in September 2006. Compared to a control group, the seed-eating mice had significantly reduced levels of total cholesterol and harmful low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, cholesterol.
Cancer Prevention and Treatment
Several research teams in China have studied the effects of Job’s Tears on cancers of the colon, pancreas, lung, liver, breast and also leukemia, with promising results. One study, published in the “Journal of Ethnopharmacology” in September 2008, found extracts of Job’s Tears significantly inhibited fatty acid synthase activity in the liver. This is important because human cancer cells contain high levels of fatty-acid synthase, a substance linked to aggressive tumor cell growth.
Job’s Tears extracts are used to treat endocrine disorders due to the plant’s ability to decrease hormones like progesterone and testosterone. In the December 2000 issue of the “Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine,” painful menstrual symptoms were reduced 90 percent, which was a much better result than a control group treated with prescription medications.
Job’s Tears may also have protective benefits for the gastrointestinal system. A June 2011 study in the “Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry” found that Job’s Tears seeds inhibited gastric cancer cells in vitro and were also able to decrease stomach ulcers in mice.
A study published in 2008 in the “Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition” found that Job’s Tears seeds improved levels of several osteoporosis biomarkers in the blood of the mice as compared to a control group. The scientists concluded that the extracts may be capable of reversing osteoporosis in rats and could also be a helpful healthy food for osteoporosis prevention.
Obese mice were injected with extracts from Job’s Tears for four weeks in research published in 2004 in the journal “Life Sciences.” Compared to a control group, the mice fed the extracts had reduced body weights, food intake, fat size, adipose fat tissue mass and levels of cholesterol and triglycerides.
There have been few human trials of Job’s Tears, and side effects are largely unknown. A 2005 study in the “Journal of Toxicology & Environmental Health” found pregnant rats fed Job’s Tears experienced a higher rate of abortions and the extracts also poisoned the developing embryos. Do not use Job’s Tears if you are pregnant, and check with your doctor before using extracts from the plant for any health condition.
Historically, ginger has a long tradition of being very effective in alleviating symptoms of gastrointestinal distress. In herbal medicine, ginger is regarded as an excellent carminative (a substance which promotes the elimination of intestinal gas) and intestinal spasmolytic (a substance which relaxes and soothes the intestinal tract). Modern scientific research has revealed that ginger possesses numerous therapeutic properties including antioxidant effects, an ability to inhibit the formation of inflammatory compounds, and direct anti-inflammatory effects.
A clue to ginger’s success in eliminating gastrointestinal distress is offered by recent double-blind studies, which have demonstrated that ginger is very effective in preventing the symptoms of motion sickness, especially seasickness. In fact, in one study, ginger was shown to be far superior to Dramamine, a commonly used over-the-counter and prescription drug for motion sickness. Ginger reduces all symptoms associated with motion sickness including dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and cold sweating.
Safe and Effective Relief of Nausea and Vomiting During Pregnancy
Ginger’s anti-vomiting action has been shown to be very useful in reducing the nausea and vomiting of pregnancy, even the most severe form, hyperemesis gravidum, a condition which usually requires hospitalization. In a double-blind trial, ginger root brought about a significant reduction in both the severity of nausea and number of attacks of vomiting in 19 of 27 women in early pregnancy (less than 20 weeks). Unlike antivomiting drugs, which can cause severe birth defects, ginger is extremely safe, and only a small dose is required. A review of six double-blind, randomized controlled trials with a total of 675 participants, published in the April 2005 issue of the journal, Obstetrics and Gynecology,has confirmed that ginger is effective in relieving the severity of nausea and vomiting during pregnancy. The review also confirmed the absence of significant side effects or adverse effects on pregnancy outcomes.
Ginger contains very potent anti-inflammatory compounds called gingerols. These substances are believed to explain why so many people with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis experience reductions in their pain levels and improvements in their mobility when they consume ginger regularly. In two clinical studies involving patients who responded to conventional drugs and those who didn’t, physicians found that 75% of arthritis patients and 100% of patients with muscular discomfort experienced relief of pain and/or swelling. Arthritis-related problems with your aging knees? Regularly spicing up your meals with fresh ginger may help, suggests a study published in a recent issue of Osteoarthritis Cartilage. In this twelve month study, 29 patients with painful arthritis in the knee (6 men and 23 women ranging in age from 42-85 years) participated in a placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover study. Patients switched from placebo to ginger or visa versa after 3 months. After six months, the double-blind code was broken and twenty of the patients who wished to continue were followed for an additional six months. By the end of the first six month period, those given ginger were experiencing significantly less pain on movement and handicap than those given placebo. Pain on movement decreased from a score of 76.14 at baseline to 41.00, while handicap decreased from 73.47 to 46.08. In contrast, those who were switched from ginger to placebo experienced an increase in pain of movement (up to 82.10) and handicap (up to 80.80) from baseline. In the final phase of the study when all patients were getting ginger, pain remained low in those already taking ginger in phase 2, and decreased again in the group that had been on placebo. Not only did participants’ subjective experiences of pain lessen, but swelling in their knees, an objective measurement of lessened inflammation, dropped significantly in those treated with ginger. The mean target knee circumference in those taking ginger dropped from 43.25cm when the study began to 39.36cm by the 12th week. When this group was switched to placebo in the second phase of the study, their knee circumferences increased, while those who had been on placebo but were now switched to ginger experienced a decrease in knee circumference. In the final phase, when both groups were given ginger, mean knee circumference continued to drop, reaching lows of 38.78 and 36.38 in the two groups. How does ginger work its anti-inflammatory magic? Two other recent studies provide possible reasons. A study published in the November 2003 issue of Life Sciences suggests that at least one reason for ginger’s beneficial effects is the free radical protection afforded by one of its active phenolic constituents, 6-gingerol. In this in vitro (test tube) study, 6-gingerol was shown to significantly inhibit the production of nitric oxide, a highly reactive nitrogen molecule that quickly forms a very damaging free radical called peroxynitrite. Another study appearing in the November 2003 issue of Radiation Research found that in mice, five days treatment with ginger (10 mg per kilogram of body weight) prior to exposure to radiation not only prevented an increase in free radical damage to lipids (fats found in numerous bodily components from cell membranes to cholesterol), but also greatly lessened depletion of the animals’ stores of glutathione, one of the body’s most important internally produced antioxidants. A study published in the February 2005 issue of the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine sheds further light on the mechanisms of action that underlie ginger’s anti-inflammatory effectiveness. In this research, ginger was shown to suppress the pro-inflammatory compounds (cytokines and chemokines) produced by synoviocytes (cells comprising the synovial lining of the joints), chrondrocytes (cells comprising joint cartilage) and leukocytes (immune cells).
Protection against Colorectal Cancer
Gingerols, the main active components in ginger and the ones responsible for its distinctive flavor, may also inhibit the growth of human colorectal cancer cells, suggests research presented at the Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research, a major meeting of cancer experts that took place in Phoenix, AZ, October 26-30, 2003. In this study, researchers from the University of Minnesota’s Hormel Institute fed mice specially bred to lack an immune system a half milligram of (6)-gingerol three times a week before and after injecting human colorectal cancer cells into their flanks. Control mice received no (6)-gingerol. Tumors first appeared 15 days after the mice were injected, but only 4 tumors were found in the group of -gingerol-treated mice compared to 13 in the control mice, plus the tumors in the -gingerol group were smaller on average. Even by day 38, one mouse in the (6)-gingerol group still had no measurable tumors. By day 49, all the control mice had been euthanized since their tumors had grown to one cubic centimeter (0.06 cubic inch), while tumors in 12 of the (6)-gingerol treated mice still averaged 0.5 cubic centimeter—half the maximum tumor size allowed before euthanization. Research associate professor Ann Bode noted, “These results strongly suggest that ginger compounds may be effective chemopreventive and/or chemotherapeutic agents for colorectal carcinomas.” In this first round of experiments, mice were fed ginger before and after tumor cells were injected. In the next round, researchers will feed the mice ginger only after their tumors have grown to a certain size. This will enable them to look at the question of whether a patient could eat ginger to slow the metastasis of a nonoperable tumor. Are they optimistic? The actions of the University of Minnesota strongly suggest they are. The University has already applied for a patent on the use of (6)-gingerol as an anti-cancer agent and has licensed the technology to Pediatric Pharmaceuticals (Iselin, N.J.).
Ginger Induces Cell Death in Ovarian Cancer Cells
Lab experiments presented at the 97th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer, by Dr Rebecca Lui and her colleagues from the University of Michigan, showed that gingerols, the active phytonutrients in ginger, kill ovarian cancer cells by inducing apoptosis (programmed cell death) and autophagocytosis (self-digestion). Ginger extracts have been shown to have both antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor effects on cells. To investigate the latter, Dr Liu examined the effect of a whole ginger extract containing 5% gingerol on a number of different ovarian cancer cell lines. Exposure to the ginger extract caused cell death in all the ovarian cancer lines studied. A pro-inflammatory state is thought to be an important contributing factor in the development of ovarian cancer. In the presence of ginger, a number of key indicators of inflammation (vascular endothelial growth factor, interleukin-8 and prostaglandin E2) were also decreased in the ovarian cancer cells. Conventional chemotherapeutic agents also suppress these inflammatory markers, but may cause cancer cells to become resistant to the action of the drugs. Liu and her colleagues believe that ginger may be of special benefit for ovarian cancer patients because cancer cells exposed to ginger do not become resistant to its cancer-destroying effects. In the case of ovarian cancer, an ounce of prevention—in the delicious form of liberal use of ginger—is an especially good idea. Ovarian cancer is often deadly since symptoms typically do not appear until late in the disease process, so by the time ovarian cancer is diagnosed, it has spread beyond the ovaries. More than 50% of women who develop ovarian cancer are diagnosed in the advanced stages of the disease.
Immune Boosting Action
Ginger can not only be warming on a cold day, but can help promote healthy sweating, which is often helpful during colds and flus. A good sweat may do a lot more than simply assist detoxification. German researchers have recently found that sweat contains a potent germ-fighting agent that may help fight off infections. Investigators have isolated the gene responsible for the compound and the protein it produces, which they have named dermicidin. Dermicidin is manufactured in the body’s sweat glands, secreted into the sweat, and transported to the skin’s surface where it provides protection against invading microorganisms, including bacteria such as E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus (a common cause of skin infections), and fungi, including Candida albicans. Ginger is so concentrated with active substances, you don’t have to use very much to receive its beneficial effects. For nausea, ginger tea made by steeping one or two 1/2-inch slices (one 1/2-inch slice equals 2/3 of an ounce) of fresh ginger in a cup of hot water will likely be all you need to settle your stomach. For arthritis, some people have found relief consuming as little as a 1/4-inch slice of fresh ginger cooked in food, although in the studies noted above, patients who consumed more ginger reported quicker and better relief.
(Green, Black, and Oolong) Although tea drinking has been associated with health benefits for centuries, only in recent years have its medicinal properties been investigated scientifically. A 2004 issue of Harvard Women’s Health Watch recognizes the healthy power of tea while helping readers get the most out of their cups. Tea’s health benefits are largely due to its high content of flavonoids — plant-derived compounds that are antioxidants. Green tea is the best food source of a group called catechins. In test tubes, catechins are more powerful than vitamins C and E in halting oxidative damage to cells and appear to have other disease-fighting properties. Studies have found an association between consuming green tea and a reduced risk for several cancers, including, skin, breast, lung, colon, esophageal, and bladder. Additional benefits for regular consumers of green and black teas include a reduced risk for heart disease. The antioxidants in green, black, and oolong teas can help block the oxidation of LDL (bad) cholesterol, increase HDL (good) cholesterol and improve artery function. A Chinese study published recently in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed a 46%-65% reduction in hypertension risk in regular consumers of oolong or green tea, compared to non-consumers of tea. The October issue provides a few tips to get the most out of tea-drinking: Drinking a cup of tea a few times a day to absorb antioxidants and other healthful plant compounds. In green-tea drinking cultures, the usual amount is three cups per day. Allow tea to steep for three to five minutes to bring out its catechins. The best way to get the catechins and other flavonoids in tea is to drink it freshly brewed. Decaffeinated, bottled ready-to-drink tea preparations, and instant teas have less of these compounds. Tea can impede the absorption of iron from fruits and vegetables. Adding lemon or milk or drinking tea between meals will counteract this problem.
What are the health benefits of cayenne pepper? How do cayenne peppers help you, if at all, with your weight loss diet regime? The purported health benefits of cayenne are almost too unbelievable, but its reputation keeps growing among medical researchers as well as alternative health aficionados and deservedly so. It can do everything from kill cancer cells in the prostate, lungs, and pancreas to immediately stop a heart attack within 30 seconds. Let’s get into some of the specifics of cayenne pepper benefits. Cayenne pepper (or cayenne pepper as it’s sometimes spelled as) increases metabolism by immediately influencing the venous structure. It is nothing short of amazing with its effects on the circulatory system as it feeds the vital elements into the cell structure of capillaries, veins, arteries and helps adjust blood pressure to normal levels. Yes, cayenne pepper for high blood pressure is certainly one of its core uses, but cayenne cleans the arteries as well, helping to rid the body of the bad LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Considering that heart disease is the number one killer in America, this is significant. Cayenne is also great for the stomach and the intestinal tract. It stimulates the peristaltic motion of the intestines and aids in assimilation and elimination. When taken internally, it warms the body and has even been used by some herbalist doctors to help heal and rebuild flesh due to frostbite. Not withstanding its hot taste, paradoxically it is actually superb for rebuilding the tissue in the stomach, facilitating healing with stomach and intestinal ulcers. Cayenne pepper for ulcers is not something most would have considered but I can testify to that remarkability capability of cayenne.
Cayenne Pepper and Heart Health
Yes, the effect of cayenne pepper on your body is dramatic, even literally instant and no more so than with the heart. Cayenne pepper’s benefits is one of the things that brought you to this article so now let’s discuss the phenomenal healing properties of cayenne pepper with the human heart. Dr. John Christopher, the famed natural herbalist, was persecuted relentlessly by the government for his practice of herbal medicine all the while assisting patients in curing heart disease, cancer, tuberculosis, infertility, rheumatism, leukemia, and every other incurable under the sun. One of his greatest stories in his long career was how he could instantly stop a heart attack if he could get the patient to drink a glass of warm cayenne water. He said, “A teaspoon of cayenne should bring the patient out of the heart attack.” Adding cayenne pepper, or capsicum, to your diet can prove to be very beneficial to your health. Cayenne pepper has been used both for culinary and therapeutic purposes for centuries in many parts of the world. It contains capsaicin, the substance that makes the pepper spicy. Capsaicin has many therapeutic properties and is used to treat a wide range of diseases.
Cayenne pepper is grown all around the world and is used to add zest to most dishes. This pepper is a rich source of potassium, calcium and vitamins such as beta-carotene, B-complexes, vitamin A, vitamin E and vitamin C. It has health benefits if taken internally or applied topically. It inhibits pain nerves when applied to the skin and when taken internally, it can cure you of many diseases.
1. Cayenne Pepper and the Heart
Cayenne pepper removes the plaque adhering to arteries and cleans them. You can help a person from suffering from a heart attack by giving him cayenne pepper in a cup of water. It supplies vital nutrients to the heart, raises the body temperature, improves blood circulation by thinning the blood, removes toxins from the blood and rebuilds blood cells.
2. Cayenne Pepper and Hypertension
Cayenne pepper helps to make blood pressure levels normal. It regulates the flow of blood from the head to the foot and equalizes blood pressure. It also equalizes blood pressure in the arteries and veins instantly. It removes blockages present in the arteries and thus, improves the flow of blood. Since cayenne pepper reduces the risk of arthrosclerosis, it simultaneously lowers the risk of hypertension.
3. Cayenne Pepper and Cancer
The capsaicin in cayenne pepper has the ability to kill cancer cells. Cayenne pepper can therefore help in the treatment of leukemia and cancers of the lungs, pancreas and prostate gland. Research shows that capsaicin causes cancer cells to kill themselves in a process known as apoptosis.
4. Cholesterol Levels and Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne pepper rids the body of LDL (bad) cholesterol.
5. Digestive Problems and Cayenne Pepper
Although cayenne pepper is spicy, it heals stomach and intestinal ulcers. It improves digestion by stimulating the peristaltic movement of the intestines. It heals digestive problems such as abdominal cramps, acidity and gas. It also helps in the excretion of urine and feces.
6. Relief from Arthritic Pain
The capsaicin present in cayenne pepper works on the sensory nerves and relieves pain caused by rheumatism and arthritis.
7. Cayenne Pepper and Infections
Cayenne pepper has antifungal properties and can help you fight fungal infections. It’s useful in treating respiratory infections such as sore throats.
8. Other Benefits
Cayenne pepper has thermogenic properties and putting it in shoes and socks is effective in preventing frostbite in extremely cold weather. Putting cayenne pepper powder directly into a bleeding wound can stop it from bleeding and will help the wound to heal without a scar or with a minimal scar formation. Cayenne pepper helps in controlling allergic reactions, cures heartburn, headaches and colds, and sore throats caused by scarlet fever. It provides relief from toothache, treats snake bites, reduces fever and migraines, prevents and treats blood clots and stimulates the appetite. It also helps you to lose weight. Cayenne pepper is indeed a prince among all other herbs.
Miso, a fermented soyfood, is one of the world’s most delicious, versatile, and medicinal foods. This ancient Far Eastern staple began appearing on natural food store shelves in the West about 30 years ago and has established itself as an essential ingredient in the natural cuisine. It is no wonder that miso has become popular among health-conscious Americans. In addition to its great flavor and versatility, the daily use of miso is credited with numerous health benefits including lowering cholesterol, alkalinizing the blood and canceling the effects of some carcinogens. Furthermore, unpasteurized miso is abundant in beneficial microorganisms and enzymes that aid digestion and food assimilation. Miso is simple to use and can enhance every course from hors d’oeuvres to desserts, from basic macrobiotic cooking to gourmet fare.
How is Miso Made?
Traditionally, miso is made by combining koji (cultured grain or soybeans) with cooked soybeans, salt, and water, and allowing the mixture to ferment in wooden casks at natural temperatures. Gradually, enzymes supplied by the koji, along with microorganisms from the environment, break down the complex structure of beans and grains into readily digestible amino acids, fatty acids and simple sugars. By varying the type of koji used (usually rice, barley, or soybean) and the proportions of ingredients in the recipe, traditional makers are able to create a wide range of misos, from light and sweet to dark and robust.
Types Of Miso
Although there are a few exceptions, misos can be divided into two groups based on color and taste. Sweet miso is usually light in color (beige or yellow) and high in carbohydrates. It is marketed as “mellow miso,” sweet miso,” and “sweet white miso.” Because it is high in koji and low in soybeans and salt, sweet miso ferments in just two to eight weeks, depending on the exact recipe and temperature of aging. These misos developed and became popular around Kyoto and Japan’s southern regions. The sweet, light misos or blends of light and dark misos are perfect in summer soups, dips, spreads, sauces and salad dressings. Miso with a higher salt content, lower koji content, and proportionately more soybeans is darker in color and saltier in taste than sweet miso. It must be fermented longer, usually at least one summer but as long as two to three years in very cold climates. This type of miso is marketed as “red miso,”, “brown rice miso,” and “barley miso.” Soybean misos such as mame and hatcho are also dark and savory. Salty, long-aged misos were more popular in Japan’s central and northern regions. In the West we find their earthy tones and hearty flavor excellent for winter soups, stews and sauces.
The Nutritional and Medicinal Benefits of Miso
Touted for centuries as a folk remedy for weak digestion, cancer, radiation sickness, tobacco poisoning, acidic conditions, low libido, and several types of intestinal infections, miso’s reputation as one of nature’s most healing foods has been confirmed by modern medical science. These studies show what folk healers have known for centuries. It is not any one particular component of miso that makes it such an effective healing food, but rather a complex combination of ingredients and a unique double fermentation process that transforms soybeans and grains into a potent medicine. And although miso can now be found in most natural food stores and is an important ingredient in natural food cookbooks, it is still greatly underrated as a medicinal food.
- Miso Helps Protect the body Against Atomic Radiation and Heavy Metal Poisoning. Researchers have discovered that miso contains dipilocolonic acid, an alkaloid that chelates heavy metals, such as radioactive strontium, and discharges them from the body.
- Early Population Studies Show Miso is a Potent Medicine – A study of over a quarter of a million Japanese men and women showed that those who ate miso soup every day had fewer cases of certain types of cancer.
- Isoflavones: The Silver Bullet in Soyfoods – During the 90′s there has been an explosion of exciting research pointing to the extraordinary health benefits of soyfoods in general and miso in particular. These studies have discovered that the urine of people who eat these foods has a high concentration of a potent anticancer agent called genistein, a plant biochemical belonging to a group called isoflavones.
- Miso has 25 Times More Genistein – Miso has about 25 times as much genistein as unfermented soyfoods, such as soy milk and tofu. Researchers believe that during fermentation microbes activate genistein’s processor molecule, converting it to the active anticancer substance.
- Miso Reduces the Risk of Coronary Heart Disease – A body of more than 50 scientific studies has prompted the United States Food and Drug Administration to endorse the heart benefits of soyfoods. Since miso has about 25 times as much isoflavones, it should only take about a gram of miso protein to have the same cholesterol lowering effect as at least four servings of other non-fermented soyfoods. This is about one teaspoon of miso or the amount needed to make just one bowl of miso soup.
- Miso Protects Cells From Free Radicals and Aging – Miso is a powerful antioxidant aggressively scavenging damaging free radicals from tissues. Miso also protects cell membranes from aging and therefore is a good natural agent for resisting aging.
- The Miracle of Lactobacillus Fermentation -Yet another key to miso’s effectiveness as a medicine may be found in the unique lactobacillus fermentation process by which it is made. Not only does this process produce more genistein, but numerous studies have shown that lactobacillus fermentation of food increases the quantity, availability, digestibility and assimilability of nutrients. What’s more, lactobacillus fermentation kills dangerous pathogens both in the foods before they are eaten and in the intestines.
- Miso is High in Mineral and Vitamins – Miso is a good source of iron, calcium, phosphorus, potassium and some B vitamins. Miso also facilitates the body’s absorption of calcium and magnesium.
- Miso is Effective in Reducing Chronic Pain – Unpublished clinical studies at John Hopkins University Medical School have shown that miso soup can reduce chronic pain. Also, macrobiotic counselors have reported that miso has reduced overall suffering in patients and helps promote calmness and tranquillity.
Let Tradition Be Your Guide
It’s great when medical science confirms the medicinal properties of important traditional foods, but researchers are not even close to understanding the importance of miso. Miso is a nourishing, high energy, whole food that helps maintain health and vitality. And because of the magic of lactic acid fermentation, miso is much more than the sum of its parts. During fermentation, the complex proteins, oils, and carbohydrates of grains and soybeans are broken down into more readily digestible amino acids, fatty acids, and simple sugars. This is why miso is considered an excellent food for people with a weak digestion and is still used by traditional Japanese women for weaning. Even today, in some parts of China and Japan drinking miso soup every day is associated with a long, healthy life. Starting the day with miso soup is said to alkalinize the body and help neutralize the acidic condition caused by eating meat and sugar and drinking alcohol. For quick relief, miso is like a traditional alka-seltzer. Also, once established in the intestines, the acid-loving bacteria found in abundance in sweet, light, unpasteurized misos promotes health and stamina. For smokers, miso is thought to rapidly clear nicotine from the body, and miso broth is still used in Japan to clean tar from smoker’s pipes. Research aside, let long tradition be your guide. Miso may be the world’s most medicinal everyday food, and it tastes good, too!
Magnesium deficiency is often misdiagnosed because it does not show up in blood tests – only 1% of the body’s magnesium is stored in the blood. Most doctors and laboratories don’t even include magnesium status in routine blood tests. Thus, most doctors don’t know when their patients are deficient in magnesium, even though studies show that the majority of Americans are deficient in magnesium. Consider Dr. Norman Shealy’s statements, “Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiency” and that, “magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body. A magnesium deficiency may be responsible for more diseases than any other nutrient.” The truth he states exposes a gapping hole in modern medicine that explains a good deal about iatrogenic death and disease. Because magnesium deficiency is largely overlooked, millions of Americans suffer needlessly or are having their symptoms treated with expensive drugs when they could be cured with magnesium supplementation. One has to recognize the signs of magnesium thirst or hunger on their own since allopathic medicine is lost in this regard. It is really something much more subtle then hunger or thirst but it is comparable. In a world though where doctors and patients alike do not even pay attention to thirst and important issues of hydration, it is not hopeful that we will find many recognizing and paying attention to magnesium thirst and hunger, which is a dramatic way of expressing the concept of magnesium deficiency. Few people are aware of the enormous role magnesium plays in our bodies. Magnesium is by far the most important mineral in the body. After oxygen, water, and basic food, magnesium may be the most important element needed by our bodies; vitally important, yet hardly known. It is more important than calcium, potassium or sodium and regulates all three of them. Millions suffer daily from magnesium deficiency without even knowing it. In fact, there happens to be a relationship between what we perceive as thirst and deficiencies in electrolytes. I remember a person asking, “Why am I dehydrated and thirsty when I drink so much water?” Thirst can mean not only lack of water but it can also mean that one is not getting enough nutrients and electrolytes. Magnesium, Potassium, Bicarbonate, Chloride and Sodium are some principle examples and that is one of the reasons magnesium chloride is so useful. You know all those years, when doctors used to tell their patients ‘its all in your heads,’ were years the medical profession was showing its ignorance. It is a torment to be magnesium deficient on one level or another. Even if it’s for the enthusiastic sport person whose athletic performance is down, magnesium deficiency will disturb sleep and background stress levels and a host of other things that reflect on the quality of life. Doctors have not been using the appropriate test for magnesium – their serum blood tests just distort their perceptions. Magnesium has been off their radar screens through the decades that magnesium deficiencies have snowballed.
Symptoms of Magnesium Deficiency
The first symptoms of deficiency can be subtle – as most magnesium is stored in the tissues, leg cramps, foot pain, or muscle ‘twitches’ can be the first sign. Other early signs of deficiency include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and weakness. As magnesium deficiency worsens, numbness, tingling, seizures, personality changes, abnormal heart rhythms, and coronary spasms can occur. A full outline of magnesium deficiency was beautifully presented in a recent article by Dr. Sidney Baker. “Magnesium deficiency can affect virtually every organ system of the body. With regard to skeletal muscle, one may experience twitches, cramps, muscle tension, muscle soreness, including back aches, neck pain, tension headaches and jaw joint (or TMJ) dysfunction. Also, one may experience chest tightness or a peculiar sensation that he can’t take a deep breath. Sometimes a person may sigh a lot.” “Symptoms involving impaired contraction of smooth muscles include constipation; urinary spasms; menstrual cramps; difficulty swallowing or a lump in the throat-especially provoked by eating sugar; photophobia, especially difficulty adjusting to oncoming bright headlights in the absence of eye disease; and loud noise sensitivity from stapedius muscle tension in the ear.” “Other symptoms and signs of magnesium deficiency and discuss laboratory testing for this common condition. Continuing with the symptoms of magnesium deficiency, the central nervous system is markedly affected. Symptoms include insomnia, anxiety, hyperactivity and restlessness with constant movement, panic attacks, agoraphobia, and premenstrual irritability. Magnesium deficiency symptoms involving the peripheral nervous system include numbness, tingling, and other abnormal sensations, such as zips, zaps and vibratory sensations.” “Symptoms or signs of the cardiovascular system include palpitations, heart arrhythmias, and angina due to spasms of the coronary arteries, high blood pressure and mitral valve prolapse. Be aware that not all of the symptoms need to be present to presume magnesium deficiency; but, many of them often occur together. For example, people with mitral valve prolapse frequently have palpitations, anxiety, panic attacks and premenstrual symptoms. People with magnesium deficiency often seem to be “uptight.” Other general symptoms include a salt craving, both carbohydrate craving and carbohydrate intolerance, especially of chocolate, and breast tenderness.” Magnesium is needed by every cell in the body including those of the brain. It is one of the most important minerals when considering supplementation because of its vital role in hundreds of enzyme systems and functions related to reactions in cell metabolism, as well as being essential for the synthesis of proteins, for the utilization of fats and carbohydrates. Magnesium is needed not only for the production of specific detoxification enzymes but is also important for energy production related to cell detoxification. A magnesium deficiency can affect virtually every system of the body. One of the principle reason doctors write millions of prescriptions for tranquilizers each year is the nervousness, irritability, and jitters largely brought on by inadequate diets lacking magnesium. Persons only slightly deficient in magnesium become irritable, highly-strung, and sensitive to noise, hyper-excitable, apprehensive and belligerent. If the deficiency is more severe or prolonged, they may develop twitching, tremors, irregular pulse, insomnia, muscle weakness, jerkiness and leg and foot cramps. If magnesium is severely deficient, the brain is particularly affected. Clouded thinking, confusion, disorientation, marked depression and even the terrifying hallucinations of delirium tremens are largely brought on by a lack of this nutrient and remedied when magnesium is given. Because large amounts of calcium are lost in the urine when magnesium is under supplied, the lack of this nutrient indirectly becomes responsible for much rampant tooth decay, poor bone development, osteoporosis and slow healing of broken bones and fractures. With vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), magnesium helps to reduce and dissolve calcium phosphate kidney stones. Magnesium deficiency may be a common factor associated with insulin resistance. Symptoms of MS that are also symptoms of magnesium deficiency include muscle spasms, weakness, twitching, muscle atrophy, an inability to control the bladder, nystagmus (rapid eye movements), hearing loss, and osteoporosis. People with MS have higher rates of epilepsy than controls. Epilepsy has also been linked to magnesium deficiencies.
Nutritional yeast is considered by many to be the most valuable supplement available and is used as a flavor enhancer as well as a nutritional aid. The subtle cheese flavor makes it a favorite among vegetarians. It’s delicious and more!
Good things come in small packages
One ounce of nutritional yeast contains 14 grams of protein and 79 calories. What you get for those calories is vital health: yeast contains more than seven grams of fiber per ounce. That is nearly one quarter of the recommended quota of 25-30 grams per day. By supplementing a diet with nutritional yeast you are getting taste without sodium. One serving of nutritional yeast provides the full spectrum of B vitamins including B12, amino acids, protein, folic acid, biotin and minerals such as iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, chromium, and selenium. Nutritional yeast is one of the few vegetarian sources that provide all nine essential amino acids, which are used by the body to form protein.
Get an immune system boost
From the 1940’s until today – researchers have investigated Beta glucans, which are derived from the broken cell walls of yeast, mushrooms, barley and oats, showing it plays a role as an immune stimulator; the macrophages they activate are the immune system’s first line of defense against viral, fungal, bacterial, parasitic infection and cancer. Research papers confirm the immune activating ability of Beta glucan along with its cholesterol lowing abilities. This is what Nicholas DiLuzio, Ph.D, Department of physiology Tulane University had to say: “The broad spectrum of immunophamacological activities of glucan includes not only the modification of certain bacteria, fungal, viral, and parasitic infections, but also inhibition on tumor growth.” In fact, beta glucan is the only glucan found effective in preventing coronary artery disease by significantly lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol and increasing HDL (good) cholesterol levels.
Defend yourself from free radicals
Nutritional yeast contains glutathione, in fact as much as a California avocado, which is known to be excellent source. At the same time it supplies 30% of the recommended daily dose of selenium. These form glutathione peroxidase, a much needed antioxidant that protects us from free radicals. Nutritional yeast is one of the better sources of nucleotides known for there anti-aging properties. Dr. Benjamin Frank author of Nucleic Acid Therapy in aging and Degenerative Disease and No Aging Diet: Eat and Grow Younger talks about the rejuvenating properties of DNA and RNA. DNA is known as the genetic blueprint for life of all organisms and RNA carries the DNA instructions to all the cells. The building blocks of DNA and RNA are called nucleotides. Foods that contain these increase energy, keep skin young, reverses heart disease, memory loss, poor vision and hair loss.
The best nutritional yeast are grown on cane and beet molasses and fermented. After being held at pasteurization temperatures for a long enough time to inactivate the yeast, all necessary vitamins are added. A good product will have B12 added in this process. Nutritional yeast is a concentrated source of nutrition without all those unwanted calories. It adds a salty and cheesy flavor to casseroles, popcorn, and pasta dishes without extra sodium or fat.
- It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.
- When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.
- Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.
- May prevent melanoma and cause existing melanoma cells to commit suicide.
- Reduces the risk of childhood leukemia.
- Is a natural liver detoxifier.
- May prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by removing amyloid plaque buildup in the brain.
- May prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.
- It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.
- Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.
- Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.
- May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.
- Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.
- Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Boosts the effects of chemo drug paclitaxel and reduce its side effects.
- Promising studies are underway on the effects of turmeric on pancreatic cancer.
- Studies are ongoing in the positive effects of turmeric on multiple myeloma.
- Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.
- Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.
- May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.