Whole Foods and Health

It’s been a fantastic year at our office! Dr. Ben has been practicing with us since early March and we are helping more people regain and enjoy their health than ever before. This brings me to this newsletter’s topic: health, or more specifically, health through foods. While being subluxation free is as paramount to health as diet and exercise, it is common knowledge that you cannot build a strong house without proper materials. The human body is the same way. In this newsletter, I’ll highlight some common conditions and what foods contain nutrients that are known to benefit each condition.

What spurned me to discuss this topic was a post I found online regarding how the FDA is essentially banning any food producer from advertising the health benefits of their product. You can find the brief here: http://www.fda.gov/iceci/enforcementactions/warningletters/ucm202825.htm

In a “nutshell,” the walnut producer was making factual claims that their walnuts contain beneficial nutrients (like Omega-3 fatty acids) that have been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers, and even some degenerative brain conditions. Their claims are all supported by peer-reviewed studies and well accepted by nutritionists and health professionals nationwide. However, because the law allows it, the FDA sent the grower a cease and desist letter stating “Your walnut products are drugs” — and “new drugs” at that — and, therefore, “they may not legally be marketed … in the United States without an approved new drug application.” The agency even threatened [the walnut producer] with “seizure” if it failed to comply.[i]

The letter continues, “We have determined that your walnut products are promoted for conditions that cause them to be drugs because these products are intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease.” Furthermore, the products are also “misbranded” because they “are offered for conditions that are not amenable to self-diagnosis and treatment by individuals who are not medical practitioners; therefore, adequate directions for use cannot be written so that a layperson can use these drugs safely for their intended purposes.”I

Apparently, you need a doctor and a prescription telling you how to eat your walnuts… Taken literally, the FDA publicly stated that if you are using a healthy diet to prevent or mitigate any disease then the foods you are consuming are therefore drugs.

Here’s the greater issue, we now have a government agency that literally suppresses the advertisement of natural, healthy foods in favor or pharmaceuticals and “junk” foods. Just because certain potato chips are “low fat” or “reduced fat” they are able to be marketed as heart healthy and even good for you… but they are still potato chips. The FDA is literally telling a company they cannot promote factual health claims about a whole food because they might then be used to treat or prevent disease. Mind blowing…

So without further adieu, here’s a breakdown of some healthy foods that contain nutrients that promote resolution or prevention of health issues (better be careful how I word that…). It is best to enjoy these foods raw as cooking tends to begin breaking down the nutrients. A light steaming is also an alternative to raw as it softens the food to allow for greater pulverizing and rupturing of cell membranes/walls during chewing.

Skin Conditions:
· Easy Bruising: This can be caused by a lack of Vitamin K or even Vitamin C (especially if your gums bleed easily). Vitamin K is an essential clotting factor and also helps keep veins and arteries flexible. Enjoy green leafy vegetables including kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, spinach, broccoli, parsley, asparagus, okra, etc. Beef liver has high levels of vitamin k when the animal is fed mostly plant materials (grass fed beef).
· Dryness: Water! If your skin is dry, try increasing your water intake. Also, your body produces natural oils to insulate your skin. Frequent washing may strip your skin of these oils. Adding fish, avocado, olives, olive oil, or (gasp!) even walnuts to your diet will provide you with the necessary nutrients to make your skin’s own oils.
· Flaking and Psoriasis: This is a more sever example of dry skin. Dry, flaking skin is often indicative of Vitamin A deficiency. However, Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin, so it is possible to overdose on it (but very rarely from foods). Enjoy “orange” foods: sweet potatoes, carrots, butternut squash, dried apricots, and cantaloupe. Also enjoy green leafy vegetables and lettuce.
· Cracking sores at mouth corners: Also known as “angular stomatitis,” this is most often caused by B2 deficiency and even iron deficiency anemia. B2 is very present in almonds, legumes, nuts, kidney beans, and sweet potato. Due to the iron deficiency component, foods that contain both B2 and iron are very beneficial. Enjoy green leafy vegetables as mentioned above.

· Primary Hypothyroidism: This is when the thyroid itself is not producing enough thyroid hormone. The thyroid requires iodine to produce its hormone. Enjoy seaweed, kelp, raw asparagus tips, goat cheese, avocado, and green peppers. Sometimes an iodine supplement is necessary as well as glandular thyroid supplementation.

High Cholesterol:
· High cholesterol can be helped by foods high in soluble fiber as it blocks the absorption of bile in the terminal small intestine. Since bile is mostly cholesterol based, blocking its reuptake into the body will lower circulating cholesterol as you will continually leach cholesterol to replace the excreted bile. Foods high in soluble fiber are oatmeal, apple skins, and oat bran. Incidentally, the FDA attacked General Mills because they were advertising that Cheerios will lower your cholesterol through this pathway.[ii] The FDA threatened to determine that Cheerios were in fact a drug to lower cholesterol when General Mills advertised the benefits of soluble fiber. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids as well as nuts and legumes are also very beneficial.

While western medicine looks at foods simply for the nutrients they contain, Traditional Chinese Medicine views every food as an individual herb with its own unique properties as a whole food. For example, watermelon is considered a cooling herb by TCM and thus used to treat many heat conditions (i.e. canker sores, diminished urination, sore throat, etc.). This makes sense as we consume it on hot summer days to cool off. TCM has long considered walnuts to be extremely beneficial to brain health (they even look like a brain). Research is now showing exactly that as they can help prevent or even ease all kinds of brain disorders such as M.S., Parkinson’s, or Alzheimer’s.

The body is a living, breathing machine that requires the proper raw materials in order to thrive. Ever since birth, your body has digested the foods it has been given and those nutrients have become your own body. Garbage in=Garbage out.

More often than not the cure for chronic disease lies right in front of our eyes via common sense routes. Eat healthy, exercise, and stay subluxation free.

Enjoy the rest of your summer!

Daniel J. Myerowitz D.C., Dipl. Ac (AACA)
Myerowitz Chiropractic & Acupuncture Clinic
291 Main Rd
Holden, ME 04429

[i] http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/health-care/8294-walnuts-are-drugs-says-fda

[ii] http://abcnews.go.com/Business/Cholesterol/story?id=7574156&page=1

[iii] http://www.webmd.com/alzheimers/news/20100409/foods-that-fight-alzheimers

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