Sunday, October 26, 2014
You know that you are doing something right when just your physical presence causes people to make different food choices. Let me explain. For many years, I have gone to Houston to attend the International Quilt Festival. Typically, it is held over the Halloween weekend. During this time I stay with my best friend and her family. This is something that I have attended since my days of living in Houston way back in the early 1990’s. Since moving away, whenever I go to Houston, I always stay with my best friend, so several times a year, I move into their spare bedroom and set up camp. This has happened for so many years, that I consider it my 2nd home. On my most recent trip to finalize the dancing in ANNIE, we were eating dinner when 8 year old Noah asked me the following question. “Mikell, are you going to be here for Halloween?” I found this question very odd. I am not a big fan of Halloween for a laundry list of reasons, so it is not like I get caught up in decorations and dressing up in a costume. So for a child, I would not consider myself to be a lot of “fun” for that particular event. With my curiosity peaked, I asked him why? His response was “If you are here, we have to eat healthier and you won’t let me eat my Halloween candy!” Now for the record, I have physically NEVER stopped anyone from eating what they want, however, if my physical presence causes someone to rethink a food choice, then I am all for it. I know I must be leading by example for this little one to associate me with a healthier lifestyle! It was a proud moment for me!
On that note, whether you partake in the Halloween festivities or not, one thing is for sure. You will be surrounded by candy. It is everywhere. In any store, at school, in the work place (not mine of course! Toy and Joetta, this means you!) Many of you will be participating in Harvest Festivals and parties. Each time you pick up a “mini” candy morsel, you need to know what you are ingesting. This is where you need to break out the magnifying glass so you can read the label. Aside from the high fructose corn syrup, check out all of the different dyes in just one seemingly innocent tidbit. Red, yellow, blue...all the colors that we know, which live up in the rainbow! Hummmm.
Where do these dyes come from? Have you ever wondered that? Well, for the most part, these pretty dyes come from coal or tar. Yes, I mean the stuff you would never consider to eat in its raw form. Now doesn’t that sound yummy? (This could bring a whole new meaning to coal in your stocking at Christmas!) Blue #1 and #2 (Patent Blue and Indigo Carmine) are commonly added to candy. Brilliant black has been known to make the symptoms of asthma worse. Yellow #5 (Tartazine) is known to cause the most allergic types of symptoms. These could include anxiety, migraines, depression, blurred vision, itching, runny nose, general weakness, heart palpitations and trouble with sleep. Well, what is a parent to do? For some families “trick or treating”, or “trunk or treating” is a fun holiday kick off. I am not trying to suggest that you stay at home and not participate. My concern is what happens to all of the “coal and tar” that your little darlings have collected. How about this for an idea? Tell your little ones that after the fun, they will get to pick out 5 pieces of candy to keep. The rest will go into a bag by the front door. After they go to bed, the “candy fairy” will come to pick up the candy and will leave a special toy in its place! How cool is that! It provides a win, win for all! I have found the bigger problem for families is to actually have the courage to throw the candy away. It could be seen as wasteful. I am actually ok with that! Better it go to the garbage (isn’t that where coal and tar belong?) than inside your little darlings tummies!
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Electronic Cigarettes- The Real ScoopRonald Grisanti D.C., D.A.B.C.O., D.A.C.B.N., M.S.
Electronic cigarettes is the big rave these days.
Many people addicted to regular cigarettes are under the false assumption that these electronic smoking devices are safe.
Unfortunately, the FDA has failed to do their due diligence to do adequate research on its safety.
From a functional medicine perspective, electronic cigarettes may in fact produce a silent but deadly symptom.
I am referring to INFLAMMATION.
With the fact that E-cigs contain diethylene glycol used in antifreeze and carcinogenic nitrosamines, don't believe the innocent looking commercials advertising their safety.
I would challenge the big e-cig companies to have a dozen or more of their electronic consumers get a Cardio-ION test.
Here is what I suspect will be seen:
Their lipid peroxides (serious cell damage), 8-OhdG (cancer gene damage), hsCRP, and other indicators of inflammation and accelerated aging will go up while various nutrient levels go down.
Not good news.
Think twice about the safety of electronic cigarettes.
Esteri M, E-cigarettes encounter rising heat, Wall St J, Dec 19, 2013
The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Grisanti and his functional medicine community. Dr. Grisanti encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. Visit www.FunctionalMedicineUniversity.com for more information on our training in functional medicine. Look for practitioners who have successfully completed the Functional Medicine University's Certification Program (CFMP) www.functionalmedicinedoctors.com. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, contact, creation and information intact, without specific permission, when used only in a not-for-profit format. If any other use is desired, permission in writing from Dr. Grisanti is required.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Rheumatoid Arthritis and Sex Hormones
A review of the current medical literature shows that sex hormones can actually
block some important mechanisms involved in the development of Rheumatoid
arthritis, including immunoregulation, inflammatory response, cytokine reactions,
and cartilage damage.
In premenopausal women, most studies indicate a strong correlation between
low androgen levels (DHEA, testosterone) and the progression of RA. In a study
of 49 postmenopausal women with rheumatoid arthritis, DHEA levels were
significantly lower than in healthy controls. [Gaby, AR. Holistic Medicine. Spring,
Numerous studies have shown that men with RA often present with low
testosterone levels. Several studies have suggested that testosterone may play a
protective role in RA, with initial deficiencies setting the stage for development of
If you are concerned or have a family history of Rheumatoid arthritis, get your levels tested. Dr. Lund has taken post graduate classes on this subject. Call her office for an appointment. 209-536-9182
1. Da Silva JA, Hall GM. The effects of gender and sex hormones on
outcome in rheumatoid arthritis. Baillieres Clin Rheumatol 1992; 6(1):196-
2. Masi AT. Sex hormones and rheumatoid arthritis: cause or effect
relationships in a complex pathophysiology? Clin Exp Rheumatol
3. Cutolo M, Balleari E, Giusti M, Monachesi M, Accardo S. Sex hormone
status in women suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. J Rheumatol
4. Benito US, Arnalich FF, Gonzalez-Gancedo P, de Miguel Mendieta E,
rheumatoid arthritis [In Spanish]. Rev Clin Esp 1992;190(40):181-3.
5. Cutolo M, Balleari E, Giusti M, Monachesi M, Accardo S. Sex hormone
status of male patients with rheumatoid arthritis: evidence of low serum
concentrations of testosterone at baseline and after human chroionic
gonadotropin stimulation. Arthritis Rheum 1988;31(10):1314-1317.
6. Martens HF,
Sheets PK, Tenover
JS, Dugowson CE, Bremner WJ,
Starkebaum G. Decreased testosterone levels in men with rheumatoid
arthritis: effect of low dose prednisone therapy. J Rheum 1994;21(8):1427-
7. Spector TD, Perry LA, Tubb G, Silman AJ, Huskisson EC. Low free
testosterone levels in rheumatoid arthritis. Ann Rheum Dis 1988 47(1):65-
8. Spector TD, Ollier W, Perry LA, Silman AJ, Thompson PW, Edwards A.
Free and serum testosterone levels in 276 males: a comparative study of
Friday, August 22, 2014
Friday, June 20, 2014
The verdict is out. We are simply not getting enough Vitamin D.
Vitamin D is crucial in every disease from inhibiting cancer and heart diseases to mental disease, recurrent infections, tooth loss, osteoporosis, narcolepsy and auto-immune disease.
Unfortunately the reference range of Quest and Lab Corp is commonly 30 to 75 nanomols per liter (nmol/l).
Scientists who are experts in vitamin D chemistry are now finding that the actual need for vitamin D is greater than 75 nanomols per liter (nmol/l).
What is the problem?
The problem is millions of people who are around 30-75 are told by their physicians that they have a normal level of D, when in fact it is too low.
Now here is another more serious problem.
When you do have a good therapeutic level, doctors using the "normals" (30 to 75) on conventional labs will erroneously tell you that you're too high and you should cut back.
Researchers have shown we could cut the cancer and heart attack rates in half in this country if people just had enough vitamin D.
Sadly, it will take many years before medicine catches up.
As a consequence, we will see even more of an explosion of our current epidemics of diabetes and depression, cancer and heart disease. In addition, more people will develop auto-immune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, and lupus, not to mention Alzheimer's.
Basically the take away message from today's article is people who have too little vitamin D are told they have just enough. And people who think they are taking enough will be told they have too much and should cut back.
Functional medicine practitioners also understand that cheap and synthetic forms in foods and nutrients lower the good level of D3.
So make sure you use a quality Vitamin D3 supplement and don't forget the value of 30 minutes of natural sunshine
.Ronald Grisanti D.C., D.A.B.C.O., D.A.C.B.N., M.S
Adams JS, et al., Update in vitamin D, J Clin Endocrinol Metab 95:471-8, 2010
Souberbielle JC, et al, Vitamin D and musculoskeletal health, cardiovascular disease, autoimmunity and cancer: recommendations for clinical practice, Autoimmun Rev 9:709-15, 2010
Pierrot-Deseilligny C, et al, Is hypovitaminosis D one of the environmental risk factors for multiple sclerosis? Brain 133:1869-88, 2010
Carl Lindner B., et al., Low vitamin D and narcolepsy and cataplexy, Sleep Diagn Ther 6; 5:47-50, 2011
The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Grisanti and his functional medicine community. Dr. Grisanti encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional. Visit www.FunctionalMedicineUniversity.com to find practitioners thoroughly trained in functional medicine. Look for practitioners who have successfully completed the Functional Medicine University's Certification Program (CFMP) www.functionalmedicinedoctors.com. This content may be copied in full, with copyright, contact, creation and information intact, without specific permission, when used only in a not-for-profit format. If any other use is desired, permission in writing from Dr. Grisanti is required
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
There is a lot of scientific evidence that this type of diet is the best option for people who want to lose weight, optimize health and lower the risk of disease.
Photo by Adam Fields.
A Low Carb Diet Meal Plan
What foods you should eat depends on a few things, including how healthy you are, how much you exercise and how much weight you have to lose.
Consider all of this as a general guideline, not something written in stone.
Eat: Meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, high-fat dairy, fats, healthy oils and maybe even some tubers and non-gluten grains.
Don’t Eat: Sugar, HFCS, wheat, seed oils, trans fats, artificial sweeteners, “diet” and low-fat products and highly processed foods.
Foods to Avoid
You should avoid these 7 foods, in order of importance:
- Sugar: Soft drinks, fruit juices, agave, candy, ice cream and many others.
- Gluten Grains: Wheat, spelt, barley and rye. Includes breads and pastas.
- Trans Fats: “Hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” oils.
- High Omega-6 Seed- and Vegetable Oils: Cottonseed-, soybean-, sunflower-, grapeseed-, corn-, safflower and canola oils.
- Artificial Sweeteners: Aspartame, Saccharin, Sucralose, Cyclamates and Acesulfame Potassium. Use Stevia instead.
- “Diet” and “Low-Fat” Products: Many dairy products, cereals, crackers, etc.
- Highly Processed Foods: If it looks like it was made in a factory, don’t eat it.
Low Carb Food List – Foods to Eat
You should base your diet on these real, unprocessed, low-carb foods.
- Meat: Beef, lamb, pork, chicken and others. Grass-fed is best.
- Fish: Salmon, trout, haddock and many others. Wild-caught fish is best.
- Eggs: Omega-3 enriched or pastured eggs are best.
- Vegetables: Spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and many others.
- Fruits: Apples, oranges, pears, blueberries, strawberries.
- Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, etc.
- High-Fat Dairy: Cheese, butter, heavy cream, yogurt.
- Fats and Oils: Coconut oil, butter, lard, olive oil and cod fish liver oil.
If you’re healthy, active and don’t need to lose weight then you can afford to eat a bit more carbs.
- Tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes and some others.
- Non-gluten grains: Rice, oats, quinoa and many others.
- Legumes: Lentils, black beans, pinto beans, etc. (If you can tolerate them).
You can have these in moderation if you want:
- Dark Chocolate: Choose organic brands with 70% cocoa or higher.
- Wine: Choose dry wines with no added sugar or carbs.
Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants and may provide health benefits if you eat it in moderation. However, be aware that both dark chocolate and alcohol will hinder your progress if you eat/drink too much.
A Sample Low-Carb Menu For One Week
This is a sample menu for one week on a low carb diet plan.
It provides less than 50 grams of total carbs per day, but as I mentioned above if you are healthy and active you can go beyond that.
- Breakfast: Omelet with various vegetables, fried in butter or coconut oil.
- Lunch: Grass-fed yogurt with blueberries and a handful of almonds.
- Dinner: Cheeseburger (no bun), served with vegetables and salsa sauce.
- Breakfast: Bacon and eggs.
- Lunch: Leftover burgers and veggies from the night before.
- Dinner: Salmon with butter and vegetables.
- Breakfast: Eggs and vegetables, fried in butter or coconut oil.
- Lunch: Shrimp salad with some olive oil.
- Dinner: Grilled chicken with vegetables.
- Breakfast: Omelet with various vegetables, fried in butter or coconut oil.
- Lunch: Smoothie with coconut milk, berries, almonds and protein powder.
- Dinner: Steak and veggies.
- Breakfast: Bacon and Eggs.
- Lunch: Chicken salad with some olive oil.
- Dinner: Pork chops with vegetables.
- Breakfast: Omelet with various veggies.
- Lunch: Grass-fed yogurt with berries, coconut flakes and a handful of walnuts.
- Dinner: Meatballs with vegetables.
- Breakfast: Bacon and Eggs.
- Lunch: Smoothie with coconut milk, a bit of heavy cream, chocolate-flavoured protein powder and berries.
- Dinner: Grilled chicken wings with some raw spinach on the side.
Include a variety of vegetables in your diet. If your goal is to remain under 50 grams of carbs per day, then there is room for plenty of veggies and one fruit per day.
If you want to see examples of some of my go-to meals, read this:
7 Healthy Low-Carb Meals in Under 10 Minutes.
7 Healthy Low-Carb Meals in Under 10 Minutes.
Again, if you’re healthy, lean and active, you can add some tubers like potatoes and sweet potatoes, as well as some healthier grains like rice and oats.
Some Healthy, Low-Carb Snacks
There is no health reason to eat more than 3 meals per day, but if you get hungry between meals then here are some healthy, easy to prepare low-carb snacks that can fill you up:
- A Piece of Fruit
- Full-fat Yogurt
- A Hard-Boiled Egg or Two
- Baby Carrots
- Leftovers From The Night Before
- A Handful of Nuts
- Some Cheese and Meat
Eating at Restaurants
At most restaurants, it is fairly easy to make your meals LCRF-friendly.
- Ask them to fry your food in real butter.
- Tell the waiter that you are intolerant/allergic to both sugar and gluten. This avoids annoying questions and weird looks.
- You can replace bread and potatoes with extra vegetables.
A Simple Low-Carb Shopping List
A good rule is to shop at the perimeter of the store, where the whole foods are likelier to be found.
Organic and grass-fed foods are best, but only if you can easily afford them. Even if you don’t buy organic, your diet will still be a thousand times better than the standard western diet.
Try to choose the least processed option that still fits into your price range.
- Meat (Beef, lamb, pork, chicken, bacon)
- Fish (Fatty fish like salmon is best)
- Eggs (Choose Omega-3 enriched or pastured eggs if you can)
- Coconut Oil (Choose Extra Virgin)
- Olive Oil
- Heavy Cream
- Sour Cream
- Yogurt (full-fat, unsweetened)
- Blueberries (can be bought frozen)
- Fresh vegetables: greens, peppers, onions, etc.
- Frozen vegetables: broccoli, carrots, various mixes.
- Salsa Sauce
- Condiments: sea salt, pepper, garlic, mustard, etc.
I recommend clearing your pantry of all unhealthy temptations if you can: chips, candy, ice cream, sodas, juices, breads, cereals and baking ingredients like wheat flour and sugar.
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