Okay, I know you never saw this one coming, particularly from me, originator of the phrase “Retreat from Sweet”, but this month’s topic involves two competing no-calorie sweeteners that both receive the coveted Gundry Seal of Approval when used in moderation. They are “Just Like Sugar” and SweetLeaf.” I have my favorite of the two, and my wife Penny’s favorite is the other one and we’ll see if you can guess who likes which one.
Both of these sweeteners use the same ingredient as their base, Inulin, while each add a second ingredient to achieve the “sugar” taste. So let’s look into Inulin first.
If you remember from Dr Gundry’s Diet Evolution, I am a huge fan of Inulin, which is a Fructooligosaccharide, better know as FOS. Those of you paying attention will remember that FOS’s are easily remembered as “Friends of Steve.” FOS’s are complex sugar molecules (fructans) that cannot be digested by human amylase, and hence act like resistant starches (remember FiberGourmet?). These guys are your gut bacteria’s favorite food and are hence named “Prebiotics”. Just for confusion, “probiotics” are the actual friendly gut bacteria themselves. “Antibiotics” are just that: they kill bacteria, including your friendly gut bacteria. To summarize: Prebiotics are complex sugars that you can’t digest that feed your gut bacteria (probiotics).
Read full article at: Sweetener Tasteoff
My Diet Evolution contains strong recommendations about the importance of a daily dose of friendly bacteria, usually referred to as PROBIOTICS. But in the interest of space in the book, the reasons behind their importance to your health was truncated. Well, now it’s time to get to know your “Old Friends”.
Your intestines contain about 4.4 pounds of microbes, at least 500 of which have been categorized. While our body has about 100 trillion cells, our gut organisms consist of 1,000 trillion cells. In fact, the gut flora has 100 times as many genes as our human genome! Wow! That’s a lot of computing power rumbling around your gut! And it’s the amount of that genetic information that has made researchers wonder if there is more to “poop” than meets the eye, so to speak.
Read full article at: Probiotics
GOJI BERRIES - It’s berry season, so I know most of you are sneaking in lots more fruits and berries, and that’s okay as long as you don’t finish off a Costco 4 lb box of blueberries and a four pound carton of cherries in two days (as a patient last week fessed up to, when her Berkeley Labs returned).
Goji Berries are also called wolfberries, and come from an evergreen shrub, Lycium barbarum or Lycium Chinese; a native plant of southeastern Europe and Asia, whose family is Solanaceae, which includes all the nightshade plants, tomato, potato, eggplant, chili peppers, and tobacco!
Goji Berries are classified as a “Super Fruit” and have captured the attention of marketers who trumpet their super powers as nothing short of curative for almost anything you can dream of (Mona vie, is a classic example). However, underneath all the hype are some really interesting facts that make your consideration of Goji Berries worthwhile. They have been used in China for over 6,000 years and are reputed to protect the liver, help eyesight, improve sexual function and fertility, strengthen the legs, boost immune function, improve circulation, and promote longevity! Wow!
Read full article at: Goji Berries
Just before the season ends for the Palm Springs Farmers Market, I had the opportunity to sample amazing Avocado Oil from a local Southern California producer. It’s called Bella Vado, and you can find it at www.bellavado.com. And of course, I had to share information about Avocados and Avocado oil with you!
You probably know that the Avocado is a fruit. Its other name is Alligator Pear! In fact it is a single seeded berry. That’s right, a berry! The word avocado is a derivation of the Aztec word for avocado, ahuacatl, which means “testicle tree” The Spanish conquerors couldn’t pronounce ahuacatl so they called it “aquacate.” Unlike most fruits, a ripe avocado consists primarily of a monounsaturated fat, oleic acid, the same fat that is in olive oil. For years, people who were trying to maintain their weight avoided avocados; but recent evidence suggests that avocados are one of the greatest health foods there are, consumption of which may actually help you lose weight!
Read full article at: Avocado Oil
I just had to find the brand of Cacao Nibs that you might actually eat! This search was prompted by reports from one of my Premier members who felt (correctly) that the Cacao Nibs that I suggested she buy at a health food store in Palm Desert tasted like dirt! Having tasted and personally consumed a number of Cacao Nibs that did not taste like dirt, I have been on a quest to find one that a neophyte might find enjoyable. And indeed I have found not one but two!
Although both are great, Navitas is my favorite. Cacao Nibs from Navitas Naturals, is an organic, kosher, vegan, raw product. You may find them at Whole Foods, or on line at www.Navitasnaturals.com. My other recommendation is Dagoba Cacao Nibs, available at many health food stores or at www.Dagobachocolate.com.
You already know that I think extra dark chocolate, greater than 72% cocoa solids, is an important “drug” that you should enjoy almost every day in moderation (approximately 1 oz). In fact, one researcher has suggested that chocolate is the most important “vegetable” you can eat! Sorry, but chocolate is not a vegetable, but is made from the beans of the cacao plant. Read on, as I hope to convince you that this bean has such important qualities that you should consider it an integral part of your Restoration Program!
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This month’s topic is Resistant Starch. I know what you’re thinking, that’s pasta cooked “al dente”! Tough, chewy, ”resistant”, get it?
Actually “resistant starches” are a class of starches that are resistant, or at least claim to be resistant, to quick digestion into sugar in our small intestine. Because they breakdown more slowly into sugar, they should not increase your blood sugar like normal starches will. Hence, it’s probably safer as a cheat than the corresponding regular starch.
Read full article at: Resistant Starches