5 Alarming Sources of BPA Exposure & Why You Should Care

5 Alarming Sources of BPA Exposure

Why You Should Care

Do you know where the primary BPA exposure sources are lurking? Even the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has expressed concern about this chemical’s possible harmful effects. Knowing these 5 most common sources of Bisphenol A exposure will give you the tools necessary to protect your family.

Bisphenol A (BPA) exposure is widespread. This harmful chemical leaches out of certain plastics, cans, and food packaging materials and has now been found in our dust, our water, our food, and in our bodies. BPA is present in over 93% of the US population at levels that are well within the range found to cause health problems according to research in animals.[1] And the latest human studies show BPA levels are directly correlated with a host of diseases, from behavior problems in children to obesity.[2-3] The good news is that if you know and avoid these top 5 common sources of BPA, you can greatly reduce your own levels as well as your family members’. Doing so may reduce your risk of obesity, behavior problems in your children and much more.

The adverse health effects of BPA
BPA is considered an “obesogen” because it can lead to obesity, and an “endocrine disruptor” because it disrupts the body’s hormonal (endocrine) balance. [2] BPA is best known for its ability to mimic the hormone estrogen in both men and women. BPA can also interfere with other hormones, like testosterone, thyroid hormones, and hormones associated with maintaining normal body weight, like leptin. In numerous studies, BPA has been associated with obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease in adults and with obesity and behavioral problems in children.[4] BPA and other endocrine disruptors are also linked to health effects like cancer and reproductive system harm.

BPA exposure is particularly of concern for pregnant women and their unborn fetuses, for babies, and for children. BPA in the blood of pregnant women passes through the placenta and enters the baby’s body, and nursing mothers pass BPA on to their babies as they nurse. Because of their small body size, young children have been found to have higher BPA levels and to be particularly susceptible to its effects.

Common sources of BPA
Researchers conclude that by far, the majority of our exposure to BPA comes from food and beverages that have been stored in BPA laden containers. In other words, even though we absorb some BPA through our skin and ingest some BPA from dust, experts agree that what we eat and drink has the biggest impact on our BPA levels.

Let’s take a closer look at the 5 most common sources of BPA exposure:

Because prunes are loaded with fiber and polyphenolic compounds that reduce bone turnover, they should ideally be consumed daily.[3,4] However, in spite of the fact that they are a wonder food for preventing or treating osteoporosis, they do have a sticky texture and a strong taste so many people simply do not like eating them. Here are a few suggestions to make prunes easier to swallow:

Protect your family by avoiding these 5 common sources of BPA exposure
So the key to reducing your risk associated with BPA exposure is to be aware of these 5 common sources and use BPA-free alternatives. That means avoiding packaged products and canned foods, switching to a BPA free water bottle, storing your food in glass containers, giving up soda, and using glass, porcelain or stainless steel containers for hot foods and liquids. It will be worth it for your family’s sake.


[1] Reprod Toxicol. 2007 Aug–Sep;24(2):131–138.
[2] PLoS One. 2013 Jun 12;8(6):e65399.
[3] Environ Res. 2013 Jul 16. pii: S0013-9351(13)00112-6.
[4] Pediatrics. 2013 Aug 19.
[5] J Agric Food Chem. 2011 Jul 13;59(13):7178-85.
[6] J Agric Food Chem. 2013 May 15;61(19):4655-62.
[7] Environ Health Perspect. 2009 Sept;117(9):1368–1372.
[8] Chemosphere. 2011 Oct;85(6):943-7.
[10] J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Feb 25;57(4):1307-11.
[12] Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2011 Jun;28(6):791-8.
[13] Environ Int. 2013 Sep;59:152-60.
[14] Environ Health Perspect. 2011 Jan;119(1):131–137.

Article originally written by Kathleen Jade, ND 9/16/2013 ​

Natural Remedies for Osteoporosis: This Superfood is Making a Comeback

Natural Remedies for Osteoporosis

This Superfood is Making a Comeback

By now, we all should know that foods can actually be used as medicine. In fact, many of the most powerful and effective natural remedies for osteoporosis and osteopenia (pre-osteoporosis) are found in nutritious superfoods rather than “magic” pills.

Berries, apples, pomegranates, broccoli… We’ve all heard that these superfoods have exceptional nutritional value. But, there is one unique food that rarely gets attention. Despite research that shows it can help normalize blood sugar levels, aid in weight loss, lower cholesterol naturally, and offer intestinal protection[1], this snack now adds to its repertoire – studies show nibbling this food daily can prevent osteoporosis symptoms including fractures. So what is this truly unique “super” food? It’s none other than the Prunus domestica plant i.e. prunes or dried plums.

According to Florida State University researchers, postmenopausal women who regularly eat prunes have a considerably lower risk of developing osteoporosis and fractures compared to other women of the same age. The study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, noted prunes are phenomenal for bone health.

In this study, ninety postmenopausal women were divided into two groups. The first group consumed 100 grams of dried plums (about 10 prunes per day) and took 500 milligrams of calcium and 400 international units of vitamin D daily. The control group consumed 100 grams of dried apples per day and also took the same dosage of vitamins – 500 milligrams of calcium and 400 international units of vitamin D daily. Both groups had DEXA scans (a test for bone density) at the beginning and end of the study. At the end of the year, the prune group had considerably greater bone mineral density in the ulna (the bone in the forearm) and spine compared to those in the control group. The blood markers of bone breakdown were also significantly lower in the prune group.[2]

“But I Do Not Like Prunes!”

Because prunes are loaded with fiber and polyphenolic compounds that reduce bone turnover, they should ideally be consumed daily.[3,4] However, in spite of the fact that they are a wonder food for preventing or treating osteoporosis, they do have a sticky texture and a strong taste so many people simply do not like eating them. Here are a few suggestions to make prunes easier to swallow:

If you are a peri-menopausal or menopausal woman, I would recommend that you follow one of the above approaches to get prunes into your daily diet – your osteoporosis symptoms will likely stay at bay and your overall health will be rewarded by your efforts.
Other important nutrients for bone health include: Calcium (not calcium carbonate), Magnesium, Phosphorus, Vit D3, Vit K2, Boron, Zinc, Selenium, Manganese, Strontium, and Silica.

[1] Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 2001 May;41(4):251-86.
[2] Britrish J Nutr 2011 Sep;106(6):923-30.
[3] J Agric Food Chem 2000 Nov;48(11):5512-6.
Original Article written by Jami Cooley, RN, CNWC

3 Natural Remedies for Insomnia: Fall Asleep & Stay Asleep

3 Natural Remedies for Insomnia

Fall Asleep & Stay Asleep

If you toss and turn at night and then feel lethargic during the day, using natural remedies for nsomnia may help. Sadly, many Americans walk around in a zombie-like state during the day, only getting a few hours of sleep each night – far less than the recommended 7 to 8 hours. In fact, the number one reason people experience daytime fatigue is due to an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep at night. You would think with busy schedules and our “run everywhere”, hectic American lives, sleep would be the easiest thing to come by! But, as many as one in three people suffer from insomnia at some point during their lifetime. What’s more, approximately 10 million Americans currently take prescription sleep aids. What about you? Are you “tired” of feeling “tired” every day?

Why Your Body Needs Sleep
Sleep is critically important to health – so important that some scientists have hypothesized a person can die from a total lack of sleep sooner than they’ll die from starvation. Why? Aside from the feelings of excessive tiredness experienced during the day, lack of sleep affects both mental and physical health. Mentally, insomnia contributes to mood swings, irritability, depression, anxiety, and lack of concentration and focus. Extreme, chronic lack of sleep can even cause brain aberrations leading to hallucinations and paranoia. Physically, lack of sleep leads to elevated blood pressure, headaches, dizziness, body aches/pains, hormone alterations, food cravings, and weight gain. Furthermore, while we sleep our body repairs itself and our immune system is strengthened; therefore, lack of sleep can increase the likelihood of catching an illness.

Prescription Sleep Aids
While prescription sleep aids may keep you from counting sheep, like many prescription drugs, they are not always safe to use. First and foremost, most of these medications are addictive so many people who use them become dependent upon them. In reality, some of these prescriptions are actually habit-forming narcotic drugs and are not intended for long-term use. This means that even when a person’s sleep disorder is resolved, trying to get off of the medications poses a whole other set of challenges.

Prescription sleep aids also come with a host of side effects:

  • Daytime drowsiness (hang-over effect) and excessive tiredness
  • Hallucinations and nightmares
  • Amnesia
  • Impaired judgment
  • Binge eating
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Muscle spasms and pain
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Sweating
  • Digestive issues such as heartburn and diarrhea

Besides the potential dangers associated with sleep aids, these drugs aren’t always needed. In fact, many doctors espouse that most people don’t actually needa prescription sleep aid, and the vast majority of people with sleep disorders can find relief in other ways.

How to Overcome Your Insomnia without Drugs

Sometimes the root cause of insomnia can be complex and involve hormone imbalances or adrenal dysfunction, and those cases will need to be corrected. But many people just need a little assistance, and thus, trying one of these 3 time-tested natural remedies for insomnia makes a lot of sense. These natural remedies are non-habit forming so you’re very unlikely to become dependent or addicted to these therapies: There is little downside to trying one of these approaches and it might be just the thing you need to get a good night’s rest.

If you suffer from sleep issues, I invite you to try one of these natural therapies for insomnia. Let us know how it worked for you – Leave us a note in the Comments section on our website. We’d love to hear if one or more of these remedies helped you finally catch some Z’s!

Original article written by Jami Cooley, RN, CNWC 08/16/2013

Genetically Modified Foods: What You Need to Know

Genetically Modified Foods

What You Need to Know

Genetically Modified (GM) foods are the result of gene technology, collaborating with modern agriculture, to produce what is perceived as a hardier plant. These plants typically have altered DNA that is combined with DNA from viruses, bacteria, and other organisms in order to make the plant more disease, drought, and pest resistant. Many producers will argue that gene modification improves food crops. However, several animal studies have linked GM foods to disruption in the immune system, increase in allergies, damage to internal organs, changes in metabolism, and increase in oxidative stress. Oxidative damage is especially dangerous because it affects so many systems in the body.

Long-term studies on the safety of human consumption of GM foods have not been conducted. We have been eating GM foods for only about 20 years, and it has only been in the last 10 years that the rate of consumption has increased due to advances in gene technology. Have you ever wondered why there are so many more people in recent years with significant allergies, food sensitivities, neurologic conditions, ADD, etc? GM foods may be (at least partially) to blame! Unfortunately, there is no way to determine the long-term effect of eating these kinds of foods until it is studied in more depth.

To keep your family safe from GMO foods, here are some tips:

1) Buy Organic: Any food labels that say organic on them cannot, by virtue of being organic, contain any GM foods. This is will be true for produce, as well as meats and dairy. Considering that soy is often a GM food crop, make sure to always buy organic soy, tofu, non-dairy alternatives, and any other soy-based products.
2) Look for GMO-Free Labels: Look on the food label to see if it says whether it’s GMO free or not. One organization helping with food labeling is the Non GMO Project (www.nongmoproject.org). They verify individual food, health, and beauty products so that you know it is GMO free. Look for their label.

3) Avoid Common GM Foods: Some common GM food crops are corn, soybean, canola, cottonseed, sugar beets, papaya, zucchini, and yellow squash. These foods need to be purchased organically. One major problem is that many of these foods are used as ingredients in other foods, such as the oil used in a bag of pita chips, or the sugar to flavor a chocolate bar. It is very important to read labels and look for both organic and GMO-free labeling to make sure these altered food products are not in the foods that you are consuming.

4) Use a Shoppers Guide: One of the best available shopping guides is the Non GMO Shopping Guide. To download this shopping guide, please click here Non-GMO-Shopping-Guide.pdf. This will give you a list of verified products including condiments, food items, health, beauty, and hygiene products.
  1. 20 Questions on Genetically Modified Foods. n.d.World Health Organization Website. http://www.who.int/foodsafety/publications/biotech/20questions/en/
  2. Genetically Modified Foods. n.d. American Academy of Environmental Medicine.
  3. Non-GMO Shoppers Guide. n.d. NonGMOProject.org www.nongmoshoppingguide.com

Do You Need That CT Scan?

Do You Need That CT Scan?

The average amount of radiation that Americans have been exposed to has doubled in the past 30 years. A large contributing factor to this increase in radiation exposure has come from medical imaging procedures like CT scans, which have increased sixfold in the past 3 decades.

In 1980, fewer than 3 million CT scans were performed in the US. Today, the annual number of CT scans is approximately 80 million, and this number increases each year. With the number of CT scans increasing each year, so is the exposure to radiation, since each CT scan imparts a dose of radiation equivalent to 100-500 chest X-rays.

When used appropriately, CT scans can help physicians reach an accurate medical diagnosis. However, mounting evidence shows that the technology is being overused and sometimes even abused. A 2010 Journal of the American Medical Association article stated that 20-40% of CT scans could be avoided if the ordering physician more closely followed the clinical guidelines governing their use.

The responsibility falls on both the health professional and the consumer in order to understand the risks of exposure, make wise decisions, and to take whatever action they can to minimize the risk of overexposure. In order to protect yourself and make sure that a CT scan is warranted, here are 3 questions to make sure you ask when a doctor recommends a CT scan:

Download this chart that shows the relative radiation exposure of different CT scans and X-rays.  For each procedure, there is a comparison to the amount of radiation exposure from natural sources (ex: a bone density exam is equivalent to 3 hours of radiation exposure from natural sources).

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Makeup Toxicity: Is Your Makeup Making You Sick?

Makeup Toxicity

Is Your Makeup Making You Sick?

If you care about your health and what goes into your body, you need to care about makeup toxicity. Why? Cosmetics don’t just sit on the surface of the skin; they get ingested or absorbed into the body and are found in human tissues. Is your makeup safe?
The truth is that many cosmetics contain potentially toxic ingredients. From heavy metals to endocrine disruptors to carcinogens, there are thousands of chemicals used in makeup that may be harming your health. This article will discuss some of the worst, most toxic makeup ingredients and what you can do to protect yourself from makeup toxicity while enhancing your beauty with cosmetics.

The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) exercises very little power over the ingredients used in makeup.
Cosmetics are not approved by any regulatory agency before they go on the market, and toxic makeup ingredients do not have to be listed on cosmetics ingredient labels. The agency admits on its website that it does not have the legal authority to approve cosmetics before they go on the market and that cosmetic companies may use almost any ingredient they choose. The FDA’s lax oversight of cosmetics means you need to do your own research and act on your own to protect yourself.

Formaldehyde releasing ingredients in makeup.
Many of the toxic makeup ingredients that have been linked to cancer and reproductive health problems are included as preservatives. Nearly 1 in 5 cosmetic products contains a substance that generates formaldehyde, a known carcinogen and potent allergen, according to FDA data.[5] Quaternium-15 and DMDM hydantoin, for example, are two preservatives that slowly release formaldehyde in order to prolong cosmetics’ shelf-life. Called “formaldehyde releasers,” these chemicals are commonly used by some of the world’s biggest cosmetic companies because they decompose slowly over time to form molecules of formaldehyde, acting like time-release capsules to maintain a fairly constant level of preservative in the makeup.

Parabens in makeup.
Another commonly used group of preservatives by giant cosmetic companies like Revlon and L’Oreal is the long-chain parabens. While they may lengthen your makeup’s shelf-life, some long-chain parabens are endocrine-disruptors—that is, they interfere with hormones that regulate numerous body processes, including the reproductive system. Studies indicate they can mimic the hormone estrogen and are linked to an increased risk of breast cancer.[1]

Phthalates in makeup.
Phthalates, a group of plasticizers, are another group of toxic makeup ingredients. These dangerous substances are lumped together in the ingredients list under the vague term “fragrance.” Phthalates are endocrine disruptors and may increase the risk of breast cancer.[3] In 2005, scientists at the University of Rochester reported that prenatal exposure to phthalates was linked to abnormal reproductive development in baby boys.

Heavy metals and makeup toxicity.
In addition to formaldehyde-releasing preservativesand endocrine disruptors like phthalates and parabens, your makeup likely contains toxic heavy metals like lead and mercury. The FDA rules permit a small amount of mercury, a powerful neurotoxin, to be used as a preservative in mascara and other eye area cosmetics. While there has been surprisingly little research done to learn about the health effects of chronic, low-dose mercury exposure, many health experts believe even low levels of mercury may cause health problems. They are especially concerned about mercury’s role in causing nervous system disorders such as Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, and depression.[2]

Many lipsticks contain the toxic heavy metal, lead.[4] Like mercury, lead is a proven neurotoxin and no amount of lead in the body is considered safe. Lead can cause learning, language and behavioral problems such as lowered IQ, decreased memory, reduced school performance and increased aggression, anxiety, and depression. Pregnant women and young children are particularly vulnerable to lead exposure, because lead easily crosses the placenta and enters the fetal brain where it can interfere with normal development. The FDA has yet to set a maximum limit of lead in lipstick. Unfortunately, because lead is a contaminant rather than an added ingredient, you won’t find it listed on ingredient labels.

Makeup toxicity: Ingredients To Watch For

If you don’t want makeup that contains toxic ingredients, you can play detective and scrutinize the product label. Not all ingredients, unfortunately, are clearly listed. And descriptions such as “hypoallergenic” or “natural” can mean anything or nothing at all. Even products with “organic” on the label can contain petrochemicals and as little as 10 percent organic ingredients by weight or volume, according to the Environmental Working Group. Nevertheless, you are still much better off if you learn to read labels. Try to avoid using makeup that contains any of the following harmful chemicals:

Fragrances and Phthalates:

Formaldehyde-Releasing Chemicals:



How to choose safe, toxin-free makeup
With the lack of regulation, misleading labeling, and confusing chemical terms, how do you choose toxin-free makeup? One way is to take advantage of the Environmental Working Group’s (www.ewg.org) database of cosmetics and personal care products, called Skin Deep. They give safety ratings and health information for thousands of products and ingredients. Some of the most pure, toxin-free makeup brands reviewed on the Environmental Working Group’s site include Coastal Classic Creations, Jane Iredale, Rejuva Minerals, and Afterglow Cosmetics. We also offer a few safe makeup options on our online supplement ordering program.

Your makeup should not compromise your health. No beauty-enhancement is worth that. Instead, opt for makeup free of toxins. Your face and your body will thank you for it!
Article written by Kathleen Jade, ND

[1] J Appl Toxicol. 2013 May;33(5):390-8.
[2] Med Hypotheses. 2014 Jan;82(1):97-104.
[3] Climacteric. 2013 Dec 27. [Epub ahead of print]
[4] J Cosmet Sci. 2012 May-Jun;63(3):159-76.
[5] Contact Dermatitis. 2010 Apr;62(4):221-4.

Mercury Toxicity: Symptoms You Need To Recognize

Mercury Toxicity: Symptoms You Need To Recognize

“I feel tired all the time.” “I have frequent headaches.” “I’m down and I just don’t feel like doing anything.” Do any of these statements apply to you? If so, you may need to look no further for the cause of your complaints than in your mouth! Why? An often overlooked, but extremely important source of toxic material is mercury amalgam fillings…mercury toxicity!

While the link between amalgam fillings in the teeth and depression is quite controversial, there are enough associations to demand a closer look. The truth is that amalgam fillings are the chief source of mercury exposure & toxicity in the U.S. population. Approximately 78% of American adults have dental fillings.[1] What’s more, numerous clinical studies have confirmed that mercury toxicity is a major contributor to numerous health conditions.

Mercury is a heavy, silvery-white metal that occurs naturally in the environment. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), exposure to this toxic metal is known to cause anxiety and depression among other health problems. Individuals can be exposed to mercury primarily from two or three sources: Eating fish that contain methylmercury in their tissues, from the release of elemental mercury from the dental amalgam used in fillings, &/or from makeup.[2] The World Health Organization has established that the greatest source of toxicity for most people is mercury toxicity from dental amalgam fillings rather than food or makeup sources. But they can all contribute to overall mercury toxicity.
The average dental amalgam contains about 50% (1 gram) of mercury. From the amalgam, mercury can be leaked into the body as a vapor, be swallowed in a liquid form or converted into a mercuric salt that is either swallowed or directly absorbed into the oral mucosa.

There are numerous studies which have shown that amalgam fillings play a major role in development of depression symptoms.[3] In fact, the most common effects of mercury toxicity are neurological problems. Symptoms include memory loss, moodiness, depression, anger and sudden bursts of rage, suicidal thoughts, and obsessions/compulsions.[4]

Furthermore, a large U.S. Centers for Disease Control study found that individuals with more amalgam fillings have significantly higher levels of chronic health conditions including MS, epilepsy, migraines, mental disorders, diseases of the nervous system, disorders of the thyroid gland, cancer, and infectious diseases.[5]

Do you have a significant number of amalgam fillings in your teeth right now? If so, and if you are concerned that you may in fact have mercury toxicity, you should first recognize if you have a combination of any these symptoms:

  • Frequent headaches
  • Mental confusion
  • Feeling tired all the time
  • Hair loss
  • Irritability and mood swings
  • Memory loss or “brain fog”
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle aches and pains
  • Depression symptoms
  • Anorexia
  • Hormonal disturbances
  • High blood pressure
  • Insomnia
  • Intestinal problems
  • Metallic taste in your mouth
  • Numbness, tingling and weakness of hands and feet
  • Tremors
  • Psychoses

Steps to Get Rid of Mercury Poisoning:

  • Mention your concerns to me (or any integrative medical provider) so I can take a full medical and dental history to determine if we need to consider chelation therapy (administering chelating agents that remove heavy metals from the body).
  • Talk to your dentist about replacing mercury fillings with resin or composite fillings.  An added benefit to white composite fillings is they match the color of your teeth.  Make sure your dentist is thoroughly familiar with the proper removal of mercury/amalgam fillings.  Also make sure your dentist is thoroughly familiar with composite bonding before having the white fillings performed.  If composite fillings are not performed properly, they are vulnerable to leakage and new decay. If you need a holistic or biologic dentist, I highly recommend Dr. Stephen Kovar at My Dentist (www.mydentistaz.com)
  • Ask me about a test called the provocative urine toxic metal test – a simple and inexpensive test to determine how much mercury (& other heavy metals) is in your body. This test uses a heavy metal chelator called DMSA (2,3-dimercaptosuccinic acid), which binds to mercury & other metals in the body and allows them to be excreted in the urine.

  • If you are taking fish oil, make sure it has been tested for mercury.  Know that larger fish have higher amounts of methylmercury in their tissues; therefore, if you have been taking a supplement such as shark cartilage for more than one month, you should switch to another supplement for your health needs.  Also, you should limit your consumption of large fish to no more than once per week:  Swordfish, shark, and tuna. Seafood choices that are low in mercury include salmon, catfish, shrimp, crab and halibut.

Heavy metals, especially mercury, are a serious health issue that need to be addressed in order for your body to be able to function and perform optimally. If you feel you have issues with mercury or any other heavy metal, please contact our office so we can recommend the proper testing and treatment!

Article written by Jami Cooley, RN, CNWC
[1] Mercola.com.
[2] Center for Disease Control.
[3] F.Berglund, Case reports spanning 150 years on the adverse effects of dental amalgam, Bio-Probe, Inc., Orlando, Fl, 1995; ISBN 0-9410011-14-3(245 cured); & Tuthill JY, “Mercurial neurosis resulting from amalgam fillings”, The Brooklyn Medical Journal, December 1898, v.12, n.12, p725-742; & R.L.Siblerud et al, “Psychometric evidence that mercury from dental fillings may be a factor in depression, anger, and anxiety”, Psychol Rep, v74,n1,1994; & Amer. J. Of Psychotherapy, 1989; 58: 575-87; Poisoning and Toxicology compendium, Leikin & Palouchek, Lexi-Comp, 1998,p705; & M. Daunderer, Handbuch der Amalgamvergiftung, Ecomed Verlag, Landsberg 1998, ISBN 3-609-71750-5 (in German); & “Improvement of Nerve and Immunological Damages after Amalgam Removal”, Amer. J. Of Probiotic Dentistry and Medicine, Jan 1991; & Toxicologische erfahrungen am menchen; Quecksilber in der umwelf-hearing zum amalgam problem”, Niedersachsiscles Umweltministerium, 1991; & “Amalgam”, Ecomed-Verlag, Landsberg, 1995; & “Amalgamtest”, Forum Prakt.Allgen.Arzt, 1990, 29(8): 213-4; & “Besserung von Nerven- und Immunschaden nach Amalgamsanierung”, Dtsch. Aschr. F. Biologische Zahnmedzin, 1990, 6(4):152-7.
[4] Echeverria D et al, Neurobehavioral effects from exposure to dental amalgam vapor(Hg0): new distinctions between recent exposure and Hg body burden. Swedish Council for Coordinating and Research, 1999.
[5] Laks, Dan R. Assessment of chronic mercury exposure within the U.S. population, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999–2006. Biometals. August 2009

Top 10 Toxic Foods

Top 10 Toxic Foods

We live in a toxic world…the toxic food that we eat, the water that we drink, the air that we breathe, and the negative thoughts that we commonly think all add to the toxic burden that our bodies have to deal with on a daily basis. A great quote I recently ran across says it nicely… “Our bodies do not need help healing, they just don’t need interference.”

The following list of Top 10 Toxic Foods provides dietary guidelines to integrate into your lifestyle for overall improved health, brain function, detoxification, hormone regulation, and weight-loss. I do not believe that there is one specific diet that is right for every person; however, making these shifts in eating habits decreases inflammation in the body, which is at the root of most modern disease. Avoiding these toxic foods will jumpstart the healing of any health condition at the cellular level.

Top 10

1: Grains (Even Whole Grains!)

Did you know that eating two slices of whole grain bread raises blood sugar just as much as drinking a 12 ounce can of soda? Grain products such as bread, pasta, and crackers quickly turn into sugar in the body and promote inflammation at the cellular level. When cellular function is compromised due to chronic systemic inflammation, cells cannot communicate well with each other and vital hormones become unbalanced causing weight gain and a host of other ailments.

Grains also contain anti-nutrients, the plant’s innate self-defense mechanisms, which make grains very difficult for humans to digest and assimilate. Eating exclusively “whole” grains does not solve the problem either. Although whole grains contain some fiber, vitamins and minerals, they are very high in a sugar called amylose. Amylose drives cellular inflammation by spiking blood sugar, which is the same reaction that occurs after consuming non-whole processed grains.

Perhaps most importantly, the majority of grains today are genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The genetic modification of grains causes the denaturing of proteins and carbohydrates to the point that the body no longer recognizes them as foods. The immune system then creates an inflammatory reaction in response to these denatured foods, which creates an ideal environment in the body for illness to arise. Grains are not the healthy food that people think they are, and should be avoided for optimal health

2: Vegetable Oils

Scary fact: the half-life of trans fats (a partially hydrogenated vegetable oil), found in foods like french fries, is 51 days. This means that after 51 days, only half of the negative effects of this man-made fat have been processed by the body. An additional 51 days (totaling 102 days) are needed to remove the majority of this toxic fat. Makes you think twice before downing that plate of fries, eh? Man-made fats like hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, margarine, and trans fats are often used to extend the shelf life of foods. These bad fats have replaced natural, good fats, and are found in many foods today due to their low cost. These oils denature very easily, since they are sensitive to heat and light, and are likely rancid before they make their way into your kitchen or restaurant meal. Vegetable oils cause cellular congestion, and are a huge health concern due to their wide-spread and excessive consumption. These oils are linked to chronic inflammation, and may even lead to cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, neurotoxic syndrome, chronic fatigue, and other serious diseases. But the solution is simple: remove the bad fats and replace them with good fats such as organic butter, coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, sesame oil, grapeseed oil, and hemp oil. Good fats are the number one most lacking nutrient in the modern American diet, and are essential to hormone production, decreasing inflammation, and yes, even weight loss. ​

3: Refined Sugar

If you want to age faster than anyone in your neighborhood, simply raise your blood sugar by eating plenty of refined sugar. Refined sugar unnaturally spikes and elevates levels of glucose and the hormones insulin and leptin. Prolonged spiking and elevation of insulin and leptin lead to insulin and leptin resistance, which means that the cells cannot hear what the hormones are telling them to do in order to function normally. This hormone resistance not only leads to premature aging, but to diabetes, heart disease, ADD, ADHD, high cholesterol, cancers, and the inability to lose weight. Consumption of refined sugar also lowers function of the immune system, and promotes systemic yeast overgrowth (called Candida), which has nasty side effects like thrush, vaginitis, fatigue, digestive issues, skin outbreaks, and more.Sugar is also an anti-nutrient, comparable to grains, and interferes with the absorption of other important nutrients. Sugar robs the body of its precious nutrient stores, and offers insignificant amounts of vitamins and minerals. Refined sugar is very toxic, and consuming it regularly will no doubt put you on the fast track to looking older than your age, and what’s worse, getting sick. To add sweetness to your diet, use stevia, which is an incredibly sweet herb native to Paraguay. The sweeteners steviosid and rebaudiosid A, extracted from the stevia plants, are 300 times sweeter than regular sugar, so you don’t need to use very much, and are not metabolized and contain no calories. Stevia is a great alternative to nasty, harmful refined white sugar.

4: Genetically Modified Foods (GMO)

GMOs are bad news. Herbicides, like glyphosate, which are sprayed on GMOs, disrupt hormone balance, kill beneficial gut bacteria, create psychological issues, impede natural detoxification, and promote obesity. Jeffrey Smith, the leading consumer advocate promoting healthier non-GMO choices, has shared exhaustive research documents showing how biotech companies are putting the health of society and the planet in danger by continuing to promote and produce GMO crops. The following interview shares why genetically engineered foods are destroying the health of our nation by causing numerous diseases, and the pressing need for consumers to reject GMO ingredients from their diet. To watch the interview and learn the shocking facts click here. Common genetically modified foods include corn, soy, milk, canola oil, sugar beets and wheat. To avoid GMOs when shopping, look for the Non-GMO Project’s label on food items. Also, start asking questions and stay informed! If we quit buying GMOs, they will stop being produced. Support labeling of GMO foods and vote with the almighty dollar by refusing to buy GMO foods.​

5: Conventional Meat

There is an important distinction to understand between conventional meat and organic, grass-fed meat: the difference lies in the meat’s fatty acid ratio. Scientists now believe that a meat’s ratio of fatty acids, like omega 3 and omega 6, is more important than the measure of the singular fatty acids themselves. For example, cows were designed to eat grass. When fed an unnatural diet of grain, instead of grass, changes occur in the cow’s fatty acid ratio and denature the good fats into bad fats. Conventionally raised meat has fatty acid ratios which are greatly disproportionate to those of organic, grass-fed meat. When conventional meat is consumed by humans, the unbalanced fatty acid ratio contributes to a myriad of health problems, such as hormonal issues, skin conditions, Type 2 diabetes, and slower brain development and ADHD in children. Plus, hundreds of current studies link conventionally produced meats to cancer and heart disease. The bio-accumulation of commercial pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics and hormones in meats is alarming, and far higher than those found in commercial vegetables. And those feed lot operations are just plain sad. When shopping, try to stick to 100% grass-fed, organic meats, and support local farmers when possible. The meat tastes much better than conventional meat, and when purchasing quality meat you’re voting against the inhumane animal feeding operations that are wrecking the health of America.​

6: Conventional Dairy

Did you know that 99% of dairy products in the USA contain a toxic protein called A1 Beta-Casein? This protein is 23 times more toxic than gluten, and is referred to as “The Devil in the Milk”, by authors Keith Woodford and Thomas Cowan, who wrote a book of the same name. A1 Beta-Casein is a transmuted gene in cows that has affected the majority of dairy products in this country and around the world. This gene mutation occurred thousands of years ago in Europe, and it still causing trouble today. It’s no surprise that so many people react negatively to dairy products, but few understand the root of the problem. This genetic mutation in cows, which produce the toxic dairy products we consume regularly, holds the answer to the many who suffer from mild to severe milk allergies. Symptoms linked to dairy from A1 cows include digestive issues, auto-immune conditions, infertility, type 1 diabetes, autism, neurological deficiencies, and heart disease. Additionally, twelve different pesticides have been identified in conventional cow’s milk, according to the USDA Pesticide Data Program. And don’t forget about the loads of steroids, hormones, and antibiotics pumped into cows to force them to produce milk in massive quantities. Yikes! Pasteurized and homogenized A1 dairy products definitely do more harm to our bodies than good. However, consuming cultured dairy products from cows that do not have the A1 Beta-Casein mutation can offer remarkable health benefits. These cows, known as A2 cows, do not produce dairy that has the ill-effects that milk from A1 cows seem to trigger. To find out more about A1 & A2 dairy products, click here.​

7: Chemically Produced Coffee

Stop and take note of how you feel after finishing your morning cup of joe. Do you feel energized? Is your brain super-charged? Are you ready to take on the world? If you’re feeling less than stellar, reconsidering your coffee bean choice could make all the difference in how you jump-start each day. Coffee beans are typically grown in countries that do not regulate the use of chemicals and pesticides, which coat the beans that we grind and drink daily. And most coffee sold in stores is at least eight weeks old and already stale, which greatly decreases the coffee’s beneficial free-radical fighting anti-oxidants. What’s worse, coffee beans are often covered in toxic mold, called mycotoxins, which may cause a variety of serious issues like kidney disease, brain damage and hypertension. If you must drink coffee, please make sure the coffee you are buying is USDA certified organic, mold free, and high in anti-oxidants.

8: Commercial Soy Products

So-called “health foods” such as tofu, soy milk, soy cheese, soy burgers and soy protein are not health promoting foods at all. According to the USDA, 93% of soy is genetically modified. And due to the serious dangers of consuming GMOs (see number 4 on the list) you want to avoid processed soy products as much as possible. GMO soy lurks in many processed foods under other guises such as lecithins, emulsifiers and protein powders, so always check ingredient labels to make sure to avoid this toxic ingredient.Processed soy also contains compounds called phytoestrogens, which are similar to the hormone estrogen that our bodies naturally produce. Phytoestrogens can cause hormonal, thyroid, and reproductive concerns in sensitive individuals. Soy may also drive bad estrogen metabolites, which may increase the risk of cancer development in some people. On the other hand, organic, non-GMO, fermented, soy products such as tempeh, miso, tamari, and natto can be consumed in small amounts, depending on individual tolerance. These products boast loads of beneficial cultured bacteria, which help to promote and maintain a healthy gut. Fermented foods are a vital, but hugely absent, component of the modern American diet. Try to consume fermented foods often to reap the numerous health advantages, and approach soy with caution.​

9: Mercury-Filled Fish

Due to the massive contamination of our oceans, many fish are filled with toxic levels of the heavy metal mercury. And pregnant women are not the only ones who should be concerned about eating toxic fish. Mercury poisoning is no joke, and has been attributed to causing a myriad of health concerns such as neurologic conditions, anxiety, depression, insomnia, headaches, weight loss resistance, fatigue, etc. Avoiding certain fish can help to greatly lessen your mercury exposure. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, the fish with the highest levels of mercury are Mackerel (King), Marlin, Orange Roughy, Shark, Swordfish, Tilefish, and Tuna (Bigeye, Ahi). Steer clear of these most mercury-toxic fish whenever possible. Also, beware of levels of the radioactive chemical cesium that have been detected in Pacific Ocean caught fish due to the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Smaller fish, like sardines and anchovies, tend to be less toxic. Know where your seafood is coming from, and stay educated.

10: “Diet” and Gluten-Free Processed Junk Foods

If you want to get fat or stay fat, keep eating and drinking the plethora of modern diet junk foods on the market today. Low-fat, low-calorie, processed “food” items are filled to the brim with chemicals, preservatives, and tons of sugar. These products are devoid of the health-promoting nutrients found in whole foods, are highly addictive, and keep you on a blood sugar roller coaster that leaves you sick, tired, and, ironically, still fat. In addition, the current gluten-free craze is adding fuel to the fire. The market is now flooded with gluten-free products, with many folks endorsing their health benefits. The problem is that these products are filled with starches from potato, rice, corn and tapioca which spike your blood sugar just as badly, if not worse, than other glutinous grains or even refined sugar. Overconsumption of these “super sugar” ingredients can end up leaving you fatter than ever. For those with a true gluten allergy, it’s wise to eat only naturally gluten-free foods like, organic, grass-fed meat and dairy, vegetables, nuts, seeds and some low-glycemic fruits. Bottom line: if you’re looking to lose weight and improve every area of your health, quit eating packaged and processed diet and gluten-free junk foods. And don’t fear fat! Fat does not make you fat! Your body’s inability to burn fat is what is making (or keeping) you fat! The body simply needs to shift from a sugar-burning mode to a fat-burning mode to lose weight and keep it off long-term. To become an efficient fat-burner you should eat plenty of healthy, good-quality fats (see number 2 on the list) and cut out grains and sugars. You will gain amazing energy, and even improve brain function by adding the right fats to your diet. Just say NO to processed “health foods” and begin changing your diet by adding in the good fats.

Now you may be wondering, “If I need to avoid these toxic foods, what should I eat?” My next article will reveal the Top 10 Healing Foods, for improved brain function, weight loss, energy, and overall enhanced health and well being. Stay tuned!

(article originally based on information from Dr. Dan Pompa)

Mashed Cauliflower vs Mashed Potatoes…

Mashed Cauliflower vs Mashed Potatoes…

Pureed or mashed cauliflower is a great substitute for mashed potatoes. Low in carbs and high in nutrients, this Mashed Cauliflower recipe is a great Thanksgiving recipe for people who cannot (or chose not to) eat potatoes &/or dairy. Try them, I think you will like them!



1. Steam cauliflower until soft but not mushy. Set aside to cool.

2. Heat 2 tsp oil and add minced garlic. Saute for 3 minutes.

3. Add rice milk to heat (do not boil).

4. Pour into blender. Add remaining olive oil and cauliflower and puree until smooth. If puree is too dry or thick, add more oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Turkey Meatballs and Wilted Spinach

Turkey Meatballs and Wilted Spinach

This Turkey Meatballs and Wilted Spinach recipe is an affordable, easy-to-make skillet meal with a few simple ingredients. It is delicious & low carb for those who are trying to keep their carbs low. If you do not have a cast iron skillet, you can use any fry pan that can also be put into the oven.


Makes about 4 turkey meatballs and 1 cup of wilted spinach

Approximate macros: 336 calories, 43g protein, 3g carbs, 16g fat



1. Preheat oven to 375F.

2. Season the turkey with 1 tbsp onion powder, 1 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tbsp cumin and 1/2 tbsp garlic powder. Mix in the seasoning with your hands.

3. Make individual meatballs – usually about four 1.5 oz meatballs per 6 oz turkey.

4. Set the cast iron skillet on the stove stop and place it on medium high heat. Add the coconut oil and the minced garlic.

5. Cook the garlic until it becomes soft slightly brown (a couple of minutes) and then add in the meatballs. Roll the meatballs around the skillet until they are brown on at least 2 sides (about 3 – 5 minutes).

6. Reduce the heat to low. Add 3 cups of raw spinach to the skillet. It likely will not all fit in the skillet, so it will look like a big pile of spinach. This is good.

7. Cover the skillet with foil (or glass lid) and cook for another 3 minutes on the stove top.

8. Then place the entire skillet, with the foil on top, in the oven and bake for 5-7 minutes. Be careful not to overcook the turkey.

9. Remove from the oven and the spinach will be wilted and ready to eat.

10. Add pico de gallo and pine nuts.

11. ENJOY!