Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sugar - The Disease Generator

My friend Vreni Gurd, a C.H.E.K. Practitioner Level 3 and Nutrition and Lifestyle Coach Level 2, wrote an interesting newsletter on sugar and its high correlation to heart disease and obesity which I believe you all would benefit from reading. Please see below.

Eat - Sugar - The Disease Generator

On some level most of us know that sugar is not healthy, but I don't think the majority of us have any idea truly how devastating sugar is. And reducing one's sugar consumption is challenging as it is highly addictive, causing withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, mood swings, depression, fatigue, and cravings.

Even as early as the 60s, the research of Alfred Lopez repeatedly pointed to sugar as being a significant player in the development of heart disease, and then Ahrens' work in the 70s found the same thing. Sugar causes an increase in the adhesiveness of the blood platelets, which may be the reason for its role in heart disease.

Sugar is also implicated as a causative factor in type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, kidney disease, liver disease, obesity, and depression, and is important in the growth of cancerous tumors, as cancer cells love sugar. Every tablespoon of sugar depresses the immune system for up to 6 hours. If you find that you are constantly sick, sugar may be a large part of the reason.

Sugar also encourages candida albicans overgrowth, a fungus that starts in the digestive tract and can spread to the internal organs and the respiratory system. Common symptoms may include yeast infections, digestive problems, or asthma.

Sugar is far more fattening for most people than fat is. The leading source of calories for kids and teens is from carbonated soft drinks and juice containing high-fructose corn syrup and sugar, and as a result they are becoming obese and developing type 2 diabetes at an alarming rate. In liquid form, sugars are very problematic as usually they are consumed as extra calories as opposed to substituting for solid foods.

High fructose corn syrup (often listed as "fructose glucose" on labels in Canada) is a crystalline fructose or hydrolized fructose product that is manufactured in the lab (genetically modified corn) that came onto the market in about 1970, and because it is so inexpensive, it is used as a preservative in all kinds of foods one would not expect. I have even noticed it as an ingredient in those touted-as-healthy low-calorie frozen dinners!

It is now everywhere in processed foods, including crackers, baked goods, salad dressings, ketchup, medications, and obviously, soft drinks. High-fructose corn syrup is particularly dangerous, because unlike sucrose which raises blood-glucose levels, HFC syrup converts into triglycerides and adipose tissue within an hour of ingestion. Interestingly, the rise in obesity rates correlate very well to the introduction of this destructive product. Click here for a list of foods that contain HFC syrup.

When I am feeling particularly cynical, I wonder why the term "sugar diabetes" has all but disappeared from the lexicon. Is it because it is more profitable to treat disease rather than to encourage the removal of HFC syrup and other forms of processed sugar from the marketplace?
So read labels carefully. No form of sugar is healthy, so know that any word that ends in "ose" is a form of sugar, such as glucose, sucrose, fructose, maltose, lactose, dextrose, galactose etc. Also watch for "monosaccharides" or "disaccharides", or various "syrups" which are also fancy names for sugar.

Almost all sugar on the market is highly processed, and as such the nutrient-dense molasses of the sugar-cane plant has been stripped away. The only sugar on the market that is a whole food is from Brazil, and is called Rapadura which literally means, "unseparated sugar". If you must use sugar, this is the only one that can be recommended. "Sucanat", "turbinado", "raw sugar", "demerara", "muscovado", and "evaporated cane juice", are all examples of separated sugar and should be avoided.

To wean yourself off sugar, you may find it helpful to take a gram or two a day of omega 3 fish oils, to reduce the cravings.

Living in Divine health,

Bray, George et al. Consumption of high fructose corn syrup in beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition Vol. 79, no. 4, p. 537-543, April 2004.

Wiley-Rosette, Judith et al: Carbohydrates and Increases in Obesity: Does the type of Carbohydrate make a difference? Obesity Research, 12, Supplement 2, 124S, 2004.

Fallon, Sally and Enig, Mary; Nourishing Traditions, Revised 2nd Edition NewTrends Publishing Inc., Washington, D.C., 2001.

Kaufmann, Doug A.: The Fungus Link Media Trition Inc., Rockwall, Texas, 2000.

Mercola, Joseph, Dr.: Dr. Mercola's Total Health Program Mercola, Schaumberg, Illinois, 2005.

Chambers, Judy, RNCP: The Effects of Sugar. Online at

Wood, Rebecca: Natural Sugar. Online at

Yudkin, J. and Roddy J, Levels of Dietary Sucrose in patients with occlusive atherosclerotic disease The Lancet 1964, 2:6

Lopez, A. et al. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1966, 18:149-153.

Howell, Edward, MD Enzyme Nutrition 1985, Avery Publishing, Wayne, NJ, 88, 104.

Beasley, Joseph MD, and Swift, Jerry MA, The Kellogg Report, 1989, The Institute of Health Policy and Practice, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, 129, 132

Fields, M, Proceedings of the Society of Experimental Biology and Medicine, 1984, 175:530-537.

Page, Melvin; Degeneration, Regeneration, 1949, Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation, San Diego, CA. Tweet This

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Whiten Your Teeth With Strawberries!

I just read this interesting article on about whiten your teeth with strawberries and I thought it might interest those who want to do it the natural way.

The article mentioned that hydrogen peroxide is the ingredient that tooth-whitening products use, both over-the-counter and the ones dentist's use. The problem is that peroxides can cause your teeth to become sensitive and that hydrogen peroxide forms radical intermediates that can damage and destroy your gums and nerves.

If you’re looking for a safer alternative to brighten your teeth, you can try this simple trick:

  • Crush one ripe strawberry and mix it with 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda.
  • Spread the mixture onto your teeth and leave on for five minutes.
  • Brush your teeth with a little toothpaste (non-fluoride, of course) and rinse.

This natural mixture works because of the malic acid it contains, which acts as an astringent to remove some of the surface discoloration on your teeth from coffee, red wine, blueberries and dark sodas. Though this method is perfectly safe to use on occasion, don’t use it too often (no more than once a week) because the acid could potentially damage your tooth enamel.

Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Living in Divine health,

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Q & A

I received a question from a friend the other day and thus I thought the answer would benefit everyone.

Which numbers are OK on the bottom of the [plastic] bottles again. I can't remember all of them.

Great question. One I think everyone should pay attention to considering more and more research is coming out showing the chemicals that are being leached into our water from the plastics we're using.

Preferably don’t buy water in water bottles as you don’t know when the water was stored in there as well as if it has sat in the sun. Also certain plastics (#7) leach BPA. (Check the bottom of the plastic bottle or container for the number in the recycling triangle) Bisphenol A, is a xenoestrogen, a known endocrine disruptor, meaning it disturbs the hormonal messaging in our bodies. Synthetic chemical endocrine disruptors are particularly devastating to babies and young children. To be certain that you are choosing a bottle that does not leach, check the recycling symbol on the bottom of your bottle. If it is a #2 HDPE (high density polyethylene), or a #4 LDPE (low density polyethylene), or a #5 PP (polypropylene), your bottle is fine. The type of plastic bottle in which water is usually sold is usually a #1, and is only recommended for one time use. Do not refill it.

Living in Divine health,

p.s. Remember if you have a question please feel free to ask. Tweet This

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Can Five Minutes of Using Your Cell Phone Lead to Cancer?

I just read an article on Dr. Joseph Mercola site ( that five minutes of exposure to mobile phone radio wave emissions can trigger cellular changes that occur during cancer development.

Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, found that mobile phone signals induced the production of natural chemicals that stimulate cell division and growth – central to the growth of tumors -- even at very low power levels.

Up until recenly it was believed that electromagnetic radiation could only pose a health hazard as a result of thermal heating. However according to Professor Rony Seger of the Weizmann Institute, the results they found were clearly not caused by heating.

Obviously further research and scientific study is needed and necessary, but I do believe there is strong grounds for this result.

Living in Divine health,

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Monday, September 17, 2007

Effective Training Programs for Females

Sorry if I've been flooding your inbox with a few more newsletters than usual. If you don't have time now to read it, do save it for later as this tip will most definitely change the way you look.

If you're a guy don't just disregard this as for females as the principles explained below are the same for you.

Essentially males and females should train the same. Let see why. Tired of training with weights 3 days per week, walking 3 days per week, going to aerobic step class, etc and still looking the same month after month, year after year?

The answer - you are not training right.

You may disagree, but if you are still looking the same and are not happy with your results something in your program isn't working.

You have to understand that it is not how much you sweat or even how many calories you burn during the workout that is important, but rather how many calories you burn in the 24-48 hours after your workout, during the recovery period.

The principles outlined below by strength and conditioning coach Jason Ferruggia explain why.

The principles that make up an effective training program for a male are exactly the same as those that make up an effective training program for a female, and those are:

• Lift heavy – No matter what you have been brainwashed to believe from watching Oprah or reading US Magazine, girls should not be lifting soup cans and three pound dumbbells with the thought that it is actually going to do a thing. You need to challenge yourself and give your body a reason to actually change. Kickbacks with a couple cans of chicken soup aint gonna cut it. Lifting heavy weights in the ranges of 6-15 reps should be the basis of your training. Contrary to popular mainstream belief, high reps do not burn fat or help you improve muscle definition. Heavy weight training burns far more calories than high rep nonsense with light weights ever could. Like mentioned above you have to understand that it is not how much you sweat or even how many calories you burn during the workout that is important but rather how many calories you burn in the 24-48 hours after your workout, during the recovery period. Lifting heavy elevates your metabolism to a much higher degree and forces you to burn far more calories all day long than light, high rep training does.

• Use big compound exercises- Females should not be relegated to the butt blaster and the abductor/ adductor machine while avoiding squats and deadlifts at all costs. If you want to build muscle and lose fat you have to focus on the basics. These include military presses, bench presses, bent over rows, chin ups, dips, squats, deadlifts and all their variations. Isolation exercises like flyes, leg extensions and triceps kickbacks are a waste for most females and do very little to build muscle or burn fat.

• Follow the rule of progressive overload- Some people, both male and female, do the exact same workouts with the exact same weights over and over again for months or even years and never get anywhere. It’s no wonder why. Once you do something new, your body will do all that it can to adapt to the stimulus so that it is prepared for it the next time and does not suffer the same shock and trauma. So if you bench press 65 pounds for two sets of ten reps today, your body will rebuild itself bigger and stronger to prepare for that challenge again in the future. When you do it again next week you have not presented a new challenge for your body to adapt to and thus nothing will happen. You need to continually challenge your body. You can do this by adding more sets, decreasing your rest periods, or most importantly and most effectively; increasing the weight.

Females should not be afraid of getting stronger or increasing their training poundages. I never understood why more females didn’t have the desire to get stronger. What could be a better feeling than looking good and feminine yet being incredibly strong? A client of mine named Elaine possesses this attitude and is driven in her quest for strength and fat loss. Not only does she look great but she can lift some pretty heavy weights and she doesn't at all look like Hulk Hogan or a steriod using bodybuilder.

While many of the principles of effective weight training are exactly the same for males as they are for females, there are a few differences that need to be pointed out. These differences are not of major concern and the fact is that many females could get great results doing the exact same workouts as their male counterparts. But since I brought it up, here they are:

• Females seem to achieve better results with a slightly higher rep range than males - While most males build muscle most effectively in the range of 5-10 reps, females often tend to do better while working in the range of 8-15 reps. Notice I didn’t say 15-50 reps. Remember, that stuff is useless nonsense. Heavy sets of 8-15 reps to failure or near failure are the way to go for most females looking to build muscle and burn fat.

Females can tolerate a slightly higher training volume- Because they are usually weaker and have less overall muscle mass than males; females recover more easily and quickly and for this reason can tolerate a greater number of sets in their training. For males I usually recommend an average of 12-18 hard sets per workout but for females I prefer to stick with 16-28, sometimes even higher.

• Females require less rest between sets than males- This is very similar to the rule about training volume. Because they are weaker, less muscular and recover faster, females don’t need to rest as long between sets. While most males will need at least 3-5 minutes between a brutally heavy ten-rep set of squats before they will be able to repeat the effort, most females can do so in just a minute or two; sometimes even less. If they are extremely weak, they may actually be able to repeat the effort in as little as 30 seconds. If you give them a workout that calls for the same rest periods that males use they will be bored to tears.

I hope that helps your training. Remember its not about how much you sweat or how many calories you burn during the workout that determines whether it was a good workouts, but how many calories you burn in the next 24-48 hours.

Living in Divine health,
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