Tag: go beyond natural

Mar

21

Soy Lecithin, Is It Really Bad For You, What About The Benefits?

Soy Lecithin, Why Is It Bad For You?When I head out food shopping every Thursday, like most people, I’m always wanting to try different types of snacks to keep things fresh and to mix it up and its not only snacks, but supplements as well.

One ingredient that I always see “popping up” as an avid label reader is soy lecithin. Now the word soy always makes my ears perk up and gets my brain going, but is this added ingredient any different? Is it healthy for us? Should we be consuming it?  Lets take a closer look!

 

What Is Soy Lecithin?

So what does lecithin do and why is soy lecithin bad for you? Soy lecithin is a common ingredient in hundreds of processed foods, including cereals, pasta, breads, soy milk and many meats. Lecithin is also available as a health supplement; proponents claim that it can benefit the heart, brain, liver and athletic performance. However, there are potential dangers of soy lecithin that could outweigh the possible benefits.

Back in 2007, the GMO Compass reported that soy lecithin, like the majority of other food products in our supermarkets, contained genetically modified soy.  Genetically modified foods are bio-technically changed to increase yields and resistance to herbicides and insects.

Some prominent health-food advocates as well as some of today’s top scientists have concerns with the potential long-term impact from eating genetically modified food sources. For example, a study published in the “Journal of Applied Toxicology” discovered that mice fed GM soybean developed a decrease in pancreatic function. Think about that for a second as a type 1 diabetic.  No I’m not saying this is the cause, but its definitely eyebrow raising for sure, I know it was for me personally.

Although the nutrition of the soy was not altered, the study showed that as few as five days of feeding GM food caused pancreatic cellular changes, which were reversed after 30 days of non-GM foods.  You can read about the study here.

How Is Soy Lecithin Derived?

Great question indeed!  Check this out.

Soy Lecithin is derived from the waste product of the processing of the soybean plant. In an excerpt from the book The Whole Soy Story Dr. Kaayla T. Daniels explains:

“Soybean lecithin comes from sludge left after crude soy oil goes through a ‘degumming’ process. It is a waste product containing solvents and pesticides and has a consistency ranging from a gummy fluid to a plastic solid. Before being bleached to a more appealing light yellow, the color of lecithin ranges from a dirty tan to reddish brown. The hexane extraction process commonly used in soybean oil manufacture today yields less lecithin than the older ethanol-benzol process, but produces a more marketable lecithin with better color, reduced odor and less bitter flavor.7

Historian William Shurtleff reports that the expansion of the soybean crushing and soy oil refining industries in Europe after 1908 led to a problem disposing the increasing amounts of fermenting, foul-smelling sludge. German companies then decided to vacuum dry the sludge, patent the process and sell it as “soybean lecithin.” Scientists hired to find some use for the substance cooked up more than a thousand new uses by 1939.8” (source)

Yum! Now that I have your taste buds going, what about any additional side effects that we should be aware of or what about any possible benefits? Well, continue reading a little further.

Continue Reading

Jul

7

Diabetic Nephropathy, How Diabetes Effects The Kidneys:

What Is Diabetic Nephropathy:Ok, so over the past couple of weeks, I’ve received several questions relating to the issues diabetics face in relation to kidney problems and how diabetes affects the kidneys, also known as nephropathy.  

Diabetic nephropathy is the most common cause of renal failure, accounting for more than half of all cases of end-stage renal disease in the United States. Renal disease will affect between 20-40% of diabetics in their lifetime, so lets take a closer look at what its all about and more importantly, what we can do to avoid it!

 

Nephropathy Causes?

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but as we’re aware, diabetes can affect many parts of the body, including the kidneys. In healthy kidneys, many tiny blood vessels filter waste products from your body. The blood vessels have holes that are big enough to allow tiny waste products to pass through into the urine but are still small enough to keep useful products (such as protein and red blood cells) in the blood.

High levels of sugar in the blood can damage these vessels over time if diabetes is not controlled. This can cause kidney disease, which is also called nephropathy (say: nef-rah-puh-thee). If your not well controlled and  the damage is bad enough, your kidneys could stop working.

Signs And Symptoms Of Nephropathy:

Early signs and symptoms of kidney disease in patients with diabetes are typically unusual.  However, signs and symptoms listed below may manifest when kidney disease has progressed:

  • Albumin or protein in the urine
  • High blood pressure
  • Ankle and leg swelling, leg cramps
  • Going to the bathroom more often at night
  • High levels of blood urea nitrogen (BUN) and serum creatinine
  • Less need for insulin or antidiabetic medications
  • Morning sickness, nausea, and vomiting
  • Weakness, paleness, and anemia
  • Itching

The differential diagnosis of diabetic nephropathy are extensive, but they include the following in a patient with known type 1 and type 2 diabetes:

  • Primary or secondary glomerular disease
  • Nephrosclerosis
  • Renovascular hypertension
  • Renal artery stenosis
  • Renal vein thrombosis
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Cholesterol embolization
  • Chronic obstruction
  • Interstitial nephritis
  • Amyloidosis

Continue Reading

May

17

Saturated Fats And Coconut Oil, Good For Weight Loss?

Saturated Fats And Coconut OilLet me just say that I absolutely LOVE coconut oil! We use if for baking, cooking and even to moisturize skin. Coconut oil is amazing and here’s why!

Coconut oil, a dietary cooking oil extracted from the coconut, includes antioxidant, anti-fungal, antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that stem from the existence of capric, caprylic and lauric acids found in the coconut oil.  The body uses these acids to combat internal and external stress, infections and diseases. Coconut oil is widely used for its benefits by weight loss dieters, athletes, and alternative and conventional medicine practitioners.  Coconut oil increases energy, sustains endurance, does not leave fatty deposits in the arteries or heart and has a lower caloric count than many other dietary oils.

Coconut For Weight Loss:

Coconut accelerates the body’s metabolism by relieving stress on the pancreas.  Coconut oil contains healthy saturated fats that prevent foods from becoming incompletely digested, which in turn aids enzyme and thyroid function.  Naturopathic doctor Bruce Fife states that by substituting coconut oil for other oils in recipes, individuals end up eating less because the beneficial fats in coconut oil naturally make people feel fuller sooner than if they had ingested other dietary oils.  The coconut diet is not necessarily a “diet” because instead of limiting or restricting the dieter’s food intake, it replaces the widely used refined fats with coconut oil to incorporate a lifelong weight reduction plan that is based on the healthier coconut oil fat.

Coconut Oil And Lauric Acid:

Coconut oil has many health benefits which are attributed to the presence of lauric acid.  When it is present in the body, lauric acid is converted into monolaurin, a compound that is highly toxic to viruses, bacteria, fungus’s and other microorganisms because of its ability to disrupt their lipid membranes and virtually destroy them. Monolaurin is effective for treating candida albicans, fungal infections and athlete’s foot.  It also targets bacterial infections and viruses like measles, influenza, hepatitis C and even HIV.  

In fact, researchers from the Philippines are studying the effectiveness of lauric acid against HIV/AIDS due to its strong anti-viral properties.  Moreover, lauric acid is non-toxic, making it a better alternative to modern drugs that are typically prescribed for viruses as well as fungal and bacterial infections. Without lauric acid, monolaurin cannot be produced by the body.  Breast milk is the only other source of lauric acid, which must explain the lesser incidents of infections with breast-fed infants.  It has also been observed that regular consumption of boosts immunity and reduces incidences of sickness.

Continue Reading

May

11

Health Benefits Of Legumes For People With Diabetes

Health Benefits Of Legumes For People With DiabetesSo the other day I fielded a question asking what types of plant based proteins that I enjoy.  One of my top choices, legumes!  These little gems are jam packed with nutrients and have a fantastic balance of protein, carbs and fiber.

The American Diabetes Association recommends legumes as one of the most important food groups for disease prevention and optimal health as legumes aid in blood sugar regulation more than almost any other food group, a key quality for diabetics and those concerned with maintaining stable blood sugars. So if that doesn’t get you pumped up enough, lets take a closer look at why these are a favorite of mine and why you want to start incorporating them into your daily diet!

What Are Legumes:

So what is a legume? Legumes are low glycemic and consist of plants that produce a pod with seeds inside, seeds that pack a powerful nutritional punch! As we look around at all the fast food joints that seem to be popping up on every street corner, it’s really no secret that most Americans depend far too much on processed foods, and far too little on whole foods to fuel their bodies. A diet that emphasizes nutrient dense foods or those that deliver a wide range of nutrients for relatively few calories, does more than provide energy it nourishes your body and supports good health. Legumes are a perfect example of this. Not only that, legumes are also complex carbohydrates which are slowly digested and absorbed. The slow release of glucose and energy from legumes is beneficial in regulating blood glucose levels

Legumes Nutritional Profile:

Legumes have quite a fantastic nutrition profile, and are a rich source of healthy fibers and protein.

For example, one cup of cooked lentils provides:

  • 18 grams of protein.
  • 16 grams of fiber.
  • 40 grams of carbs.
  • 37% of the RDA for iron.
  • 90% of the RDA for folate.
  • 18% of the RDA for magnesium.
  • 21% of the RDA for potassium.
  • Over 10% of the RDA for Vitamins B1, B3, B5 and B6, phosphorus, zinc, copper and manganese.

This is why legumes are among the best plant-based sources of dietary protein.  Not only are they highly nutritious, they are also extremely cheap.  Something that definitely resonates with me!

Continue Reading

May

3

Is Sorbitol Safe For People With Diabetes?

Is Sorbitol Safe For People With Diabetes?In a recent discussion earlier this week, someone in my Facebook group brought to my attention if sorbitol in toothpaste was really that bad even though he tries to avoid it at all costs. Honestly, I’ve never heard of sorbitol and curiosity immediately kicked in.  As a type 1 diabetic, the vast majority of us try and eat as health as possible to avoid any potential long term side effects.  So what’s the deal?  Are sorbitol side effects in gum and toothpaste really all that bad? Lets take a closer look!

 

What Is Sorbitol?

So what is this stuff anyway and are there other names for sorbitol? Well, sorbitol was first discovered in its naturally occurring form in 1872 and is in a variety of fruits and berries. Common fruits which contain this sugar are the stone fruits, such as apples, pears, peaches, apricots and cherries. High quantities of Sorbitol are also found in such items as dry fruits, prunes, raisins and figs. Sorbitol in these fruits is often associated with gas formation and aggravation of irritable bowel syndrome.

Safe For Type 1 Diabetics?

I guess (for obvious reasons) this is the one that surprised me the most and Jim, I can now see your concern with using sorbitol and thank you for pointing this out to me. I’m also thinking that you have to have adequate amounts as part of your daily diet, but lets see.

As type 1 and type 2 diabetics we may incorrectly believe products containing sorbitol and labeled “no sugar added” or “sugar free” will not affect their blood sugar. This is a dangerous misunderstanding that could lead to significantly elevated blood sugar levels, according to Joslin Diabetes Center.

The calories and carbohydrates in foods containing sorbitol or any other sugar alcohol  must be added in to the total allowed amounts of a diabetic person’s meal plan. Read the nutrition label and look for sorbitol on the ingredient list; also look at the total carbohydrate grams per serving in order to avoid abnormally high blood sugars.

An Artificial Sweetener?

Well lets just say that once man gets into a lab, essentially anything can become artificial and altered, but what about sorbitol?  Like I mentioned earlier sorbitol occurs naturally in fruits and berries, but sorbitol can now made chemically from corn syrup and is in a variety of foods and health products. Because it contains one-third the calories found in glucose, it is widely present in a variety of diet drinks and foods. Sorbitol is found in puddings, pancake-mix, cookies, oatmeal, and a variety of other foods. Foods products labeled as “containing no sugar” or “lite” frequently contain sorbitol as an artificial sweetener. A number of health and nutrition bars also advertised for diabetics also contain quantities of sorbitol.
Continue Reading

Apr

29

Health Benefits Of Dragon Fruit For People With Diabetes:

Health Benefits Of Dragon Fruit For People With Diabetes:Even if you do not know what dragon fruit, you may have seen them at your local supermarket at some point. Dragon fruit is actually an extremely nutritious fruit despite its odd looking shape. They are usually pink or reddish with spikes of green and yellow light coming from them, although there are actually three kinds.

Although they are increasingly popular in North America, they are not widely consumed. They are also very popular all across Asia, as well as in Mexico, Central America, and South America. Dragon fruit is actually grown in several types of cactus, this cactus blooms only at night when they revealed their flowers big, beautiful and fragrant. The purpose of this article is to consider the fantastic health benefits of dragon fruit.

Dragon Fruit And Macronutrients:

The benefits of eating dragon fruit are plentiful. A small 7-ounce dragon fruit contains 59 calories, 2 grams of protein, 0.4 gram of fat and 14 grams of carbohydrate, including 1 gram of fiber. The carbohydrate in dragon fruit consists mainly of the sugars fructose and glucose. The fiber is made up of mainly oligosaccharides, which aren’t digest One of the largest issues with loosing pounds is being able to keep your stomach full for hours after you have eaten. With the help of this exotic product of nature, you will be able to feel satisfied for longer periods of time.ed in the stomach or small intestine. These oligosaccharides act as prebiotics, helping to stimulate the growth of the healthy bacteria lactobacilli and bifidobacteria, which are probiotics, notes an article published in June 2010 in “Food Chemistry.” Probiotics help limit the growth of unhealthy bacteria and help with digestion. They may also help treat diarrhea and other intestinal infections, according to MayoClinic.com.

For Weight Loss:

One of the largest issues with loosing weight is being able to keep your stomach full for hours after you have eaten. With the help of this exotic product of nature, you will be able to feel satisfied for longer periods of time. What is more, it is comprised mostly of fiber and is incredibly low in calories, therefore it will help you to feel full after eating in comparison to other fruits. It also improves the human metabolism rate, assisting you with weight management.
Continue Reading