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A Silver Bullet A Day Will Keep The Doctor Away!

 

Colloidal silver works as an antiviral (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22024958),  antifungal and antibacterial that destroys parasites, including both anaerobic and aerobic bugs (even the ones that are antibiotic resistant (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22324439) rendering us helpless victims to the illness du jour. For this reason, it is more versatile than an antibiotic and much more valuable than gold when it comes to staying healthy.

Silver saves the day with a superhero’s arsenal of weaponry.  When it comes to protecting us against germs it uses magnetic “force” (through positive charge) and works to:

  • blast away the oxygen capability of aerobic bugs
  • kill anaerobic germs via oxidation by demolishing enzymes that help maintain its anaerobic state

This is not breaking news. Silver is nothing new. The ancient Greeks and Romans used it to preserve food and they used silver utensils to help prevent food borne pathogens from causing disease. Later in the late 1800’s 1% silver nitrate was placed into the eyes of newborns to prevent blindness from gonorrhea. Treatment dressings for burn victims and wounded soldiers contain silver as a healing ingredient. Silver has been used by surgeons and hospitals preventively against infection and even used by the International Space Station to disinfect water.

I use Silversol by American Biotech labs myself for the last 7 years and recommend it to clients for:

  • dental hygiene
  • building and maintaining a healthy immune system especially when an illness is coming on, or when I hear the flu is out and about
  • travel (before and during )
  • kids germs and cuts (faster healing), ear infections and skin lesions (molluscum)
  • jock itch
  • yeast infections (candida)
  • herpes
  • as a spray-on hand sanitizer and disinfectant for gym equipment

There are so many uses for Silversol. Typically I do not recommend brands but I am in this case because some silver products may not be for everyone. There are some silver products that interact with prescription medication: penicillamine (Cuprimine, Depen), quinolone antibiotics, tetracycline and thyroxine (Levothroid, Levoxyl, Synthroid).

Silversol is a new generation product. It seems that its’ patented technology (a multi-valant silver oxide coating surrounding the silver nano-particle) gives it more bioavailability and makes it more stable because it attaches to the water solution it is carried in “Silversol”. It is a tasteless liquid.

Salt is its one kryptonite and can reduce its effectiveness. So do not use Silversol with salt or higher sodium foods.

There seems to be no risk of ” turning blue”,http://ablsilver.com/benefits.php, especially if taken in moderate amounts and not in excess. No worries about killing healthy gut bacteria or some of the concerns with medication interaction as other silver products. I found a couple of recent studies on its safety, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23811290 in, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25137296 and checked out the author, here’s what I found:

“Funding: This study was funded in part by Award Number UL1RR025764 from the National Center for Research Resources. Conflict of Interest: The authors declare no conflicts of interest or financial interests in any product or service mentioned in this article, including grants, employment, gifts, stock holdings, honoraria, consultancies, expert testimony, patents, and royalties.”

So this should be reliable data. However, as I tell all my clients, if you take any product, food, beverage or supplement and think it affects you in any way. Use common sense, communicate with your doctor.

There is no such thing as a “magic” bullet.  But there is such a thing as a silver bullet. Save yourself from getting sick and get rid of germs (foreign body invaders) that make you ill. Silversol is a superhero when it comes to guarding against a “home invasion” of body bugs including infections, bacteria, viruses and fungi, that can knock you down for the count!

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The King of Ketosis

Dr. Atkins

 

Ketosis simply means burning fat. When your body burns fat it helps correct metabolic health and weight issues. If you are not healthy or cannot seem to lose weight, Make a change in your way of eating.

At a minimum, Dr. Atkins should be known as the “King of Ketosis”. It’s been awhile since I worked with Dr. Atkins and embarked on my own high fat, low carb journey. Back then, although we cited Keckwick and Pawan and a few others, we had NO “current” research. We barely even understood what happened biochemically in the body but we did know that our patients reaped the benefits much before the sea of results with today’s “current” research and monumental low carb following.

We understood the power of ketosis (controlling carbohydrates) and the health benefits of fat. Because eating real food and avoiding the push for commercially prepared low-fat products tainted with trans fat and high fructose corn syrup was and is healthier. We witnessed health and weight improvements. We did not need to wait for research when right in front of our eyes was this nutritional blessing of ketosis that helped improve quality of life and we would not bury our heads in the sand of denial no matter who said otherwise. It is hard to imagine what would have happened if Dr. Atkins retaliated in fear or lost his endurance to the wolves that hunted him. There were so many attacks.

I was a registered dietitian (RD), a vegetarian at the time eating low-fat foods, but Dr. Atkins hired me anyway. He was extremely bright. I think he knew what he was doing when he hired “the enemy”. He used to call registered dietitians “airheads” because he was so frustrated at the medical establishment trying to denounce what he was doing and label him a “quack”. When I reminded him I was a RD, he smiled ( a charismatic smile ) and said “not all of them”.

I, on the other hand, had no idea what I was about to experience and even explain how this job would become my life. However there were four main reasons  I switched from being a vegetarian to an Atkins for lifer!

  1. As a vegetarian, it was difficult to make creative eating suggestions for my flesh-eating clients.
  2. I was about ten pounds overweight and I wanted to experience the excitement my clients felt and, of course, the fast weight loss results.
  3. I saw patients clinical labs and they all improved: cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure and all the rest, including the clients reported benefits:
  • improved energy
  • stable moods
  • mental focus
  • less gas/ bloating
  • better sleep
  • less acne flare ups and episodes
  • less appetite

oh, there were so many…

  1. As I dug through the published data and paced the shopping aisles of the grocery store. I realized this “Atkins” diet was healthier than anything I had recommended during my whole nutrition career. I realized I was brain washed by the establishment. Fast forward, while I completed the nutritional analysis of the menus in my book, “The Stubborn Fat Fix” (http://www.amazon.com/The-Stubborn-Fat-Fix-Metabolic/dp/159486828X), the less carbs the more nutrient dens the meal. As carbs were placed back into meals, not too many of course, it diluted what I call the “nutrient bang for the calorie buck”.

We did not have sexy marketing lingo like “nutritional” ketosis.  Although it is a great descriptor as being in ketosis  equates to eating nutrient dense meals. Today we may just take for granted what seems to be the obvious.

Cristi Vlad does a great job at explaining ketosis, http://cristivlad.com/ketosis-special-metabolic-state/. He describes his own weight and fat loss but the advantage of lowering carbs goes beyond what you see on the outside.

The true magic of ketosis is buried deep within at the hormonal level and hormones influence our lives (men, women and children) much more than we know.

If you want to read up on the research, Ellen Davis has a no holds barred  website, http://www.ketogenic-diet-resource.com/ketogenic-diet-benefits.html on almost everything you may want to know about a low carbohydrate ketogenic diet and how it contributes to slowing the aging process and healing:

  • any blood sugar disorder, including diabetes, hypoglycemia, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome
  • heart disease
  • cancer
  • parkinson’s disease
  • multiple sclerosis
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • epilepsy
  • autism
  • fatty liver
  • stomach issues like reflux, ulcers, gas bloating

and the list goes on.

Don’t be afraid of ketosis or living low carb.  Jimmy Moore, http://www.livinlavidalowcarb.com/, has been living low carb, writing books, doing podcasts, hosting cruises and even has a list of practitioners who can help you, http://lowcarbdoctors.blogspot.com/. Burning fat to supply body energy (ketosis) is not only an optimal way of eating, it is prudent for quality of life and longevity.

 

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Extra, Extra, Read All About It: A Twist in Fate for Fat!

Image result for newspaper

Nutritional advice is anything but consistent. Fat phobia has been ingrained (LOL) in our minds over the years but recently it seems the headlines contradict all that:

  • “Fat Is Key To Your Survival”
  • “Butter Isn’t Bad For You After All”

While these headlines might be shocking to some, there are an estimated “30 million people in the U.S. following some sort of diet that restricts carbohydrates” who have experienced the powerful benefits of this way of eating (WOE).  Most low carb plans are higher in healthy fats that help fat burning, starve cancer and boost heart health. It is about time. In my opinion, there have been many people whose nutritional needs have been neglected and improperly treated because of selfish or stubborn spin doctors who refused to accept the truth.

It is good news that reports like these are making headway into the consumer spotlight so that people can make educated decisions based on both sides of the nutrition coin instead of a one-sided agenda.

No matter what diet you choose to follow these headlines may be hard to swallow:

“Investigation reveals network of links between public health scientists and sugar industry”http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/02/150211204055.htm.  “Public health scientists and a government committee working on nutritional advice receive funding from the very companies (Nestle, Cocoa-cola, Pepsi, Kellogg’s, Glaxo SmithKline and Weight Watchers International) whose products are widely held to be responsible for the obesity crisis.”

I guess not too surprising if you believe that money, politics go hand in hand. But what is actually pretty scary is an article posted by Reuters, http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/09/us-health-fat-idUSKBN0LD2KL20150209, claiming that the dietary guidelines set forth for Americans and Britons may not be grounded in objective science. The health message seems to be twisted to fit their own purse, uh I mean purpose.

The study mentioned and published in the Open Heart journal said, “national advice on fat consumption, recommended reducing overall dietary fat consumption to 30 percent of total intake and limiting saturated fat to around 10 percent,  issued to millions of Britons and Americans in 1977 and 1983 lacked any solid trial evidence to back it up”.

Co-authors, Zoe Harcombe of the University of the West of Scotland and James DiNicolantonio of the Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute analyzed the trials used for the guidelines and found, “the research was flawed, failed to take into account the totality of the evidence and the guidelines were inconsistent with the evidence,” saying it seemed “incomprehensible that this dietary advice was given to millions of Americans and Britons.”

Even the Harvard School of Public Health has weighed in with results of a study that were published study in the Journal of the American Medical Association. “Women assigned to eating a low-fat diet for eight years did not appear to gain protection against breast cancer, colorectal cancer, or cardiovascular disease. And after eight years, their weights were generally the same as those of women following their usual diets,” http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/low-fat/.

My main purpose for this blog is to help those who fall victim to nutrition advice they think is good but need an eye opener to make better food choices.

There is so much riffraff being spewed all over the place. Use your senses, common sense included. Do not follow any nutrition advice blindly, use your eyes to read labels. Feel your body signals and learn to follow them. If you are hungry an hour after a meal, that meal is not for you. Taste your food and let it satisfy you, there is no need to overeat. A meal should tide you over for a few hours. Real food with real fat tastes good (avocado, butter, mayonnaise) enjoy eating instead of getting used to “fat free” cardboard foods.

Don’t give up your health to any marketing company, governmental agency or even healthcare specialist. Research, marketing and the government all have their places in your decision-making but they should not ultimately dictate your personal eating decision. Be an educated health consumer because you are your best advocate. Do what is best for you.

There will be many headlines touting miraculous and even scientific validation by spin doctors in what is considered trusted nutrition circles. Beware!

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2015 in NUTRITION GUIDELINES

 

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Think Before You Drink: Alcohol Messes with Muscle

Does Drinking Alcohol Ruin Post-Exercise Recovery?

http://greatist.com/fitness/does-drinking-alcohol-ruin-post-exercise-recovery

Consuming moderate amounts of alcohol has its advantages;  It can help you relax, make a meal more enjoyable, lower heart disease and diabetes risk factors and it may also add a few years to your life.

Drinking more than you can handle is obviously a problem. When you overindulge, alcohol impairs judgment, amongst many  other things, and effects fitness goals by increasing appetite or lowering your guard so you eat more. You may also find it more difficult to complete aerobic activities as it lowers endurance and aerobic capacity (VO2 max).

When performance counts, you get blasted again because alcohol dehydrates the body leaving muscles more susceptible to injury (soreness, flexibility, tears, etc…) and nutrient depletion. For example calcium, magnesium and potassium are nutrients involved in muscle function so if they are lost as a result of dehydration there is not enough nutrients to do their jobs, you suffer. The effects of dehydration and nutrient depletion can last for up to 48 hours after your last swig.

If you are eating right and exercising to gain strength and build lean body mass, imbibing too much alcohol will contribute to actual muscle loss and decreases the muscles ability to synthesize protein for growth.

According to M. Rudolph there are, “4 Reasons Why If You Booze, You Lose Muscle” and they are all referenced, http://www.musculardevelopment.com/articles/research-and-review/13904-4-reasons-why-if-you-booze-you-lose-muscle.html#.VNO2E53F88x. I’m gonna list six, the first 3 are hormone related.

  1. Alcohol directly inhibits muscle growth by lessening insulin’s ability to help muscle grow. It may possibly shunt insulin into storing fat which may explain the dreaded “beer belly” effect of drinking.
  2. Small amounts (2 drinks) of alcohol may boost testosterone (T) but more is definitely not better where T is concerned. Alcohol interferes with the release of T. Less T, less muscle mass and less definition.
  3. Alcohol can cause cortisol to be released. Cortisol is a stress hormone that works to breaks down muscle and inhibit protein synthesis. Working in its natural state cortisol is not detrimental but when environmental factors, like alcohol, tip the scales, it is not ideal especially where muscle strength and size are concerned.
  4. Metabolic pathways are influenced by alcohol and effect muscle growth as well. Alcohol inhibits phosphatidic acid (PA). PA activates mTOR. “mTOR is like a molecular switch that turns on the machinery that manufactures muscle proteins and leucine is one of the major activators of mTOR,” http://www.nutritionexpress.com/article+index/authors/jeff+s+volek+phd+rd/showarticle.aspx?articleid=807. If PA levels are low, protein synthesis via mTOR becomes less muscles cannot reach their potential growth.
  5. Excess alcohol intake negatively effects fast twitch muscle fibers (type of muscle needed for power) that play a role in increasing muscle size and strength
  6. Increases in myostatin can interfere with muscle growth by preventing muscle repair and the formation of new fibers and decreasing mTOR-driven muscle protein synthesis.

The same rules apply for alcohol as with anything else. Control the “how much” for optimal muscle development and performance.

Alcohol messes with muscle and hydration status. Less alcohol means muscles can work more efficiently. Working out hard may be hardly working for you if you drink too much.

 
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Posted by on February 9, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

The Calorie Theory: Drop It Like It’s Hot

summer

Photo:writers.uclaextension.edu

It is freezing outside (in NY) 32 degrees F and we are surrounded by snow and ice.  Today is February 2nd. It’s the day after the Super Bowl, big deal, it’s not a major holiday, not a significant day in history but it is a mark of the 139th day until the first day of summer, June 21! Yes, that’s right about 4.5 quick months that will fly by as quick as a blink of an eye.

Don’t wait ’till it’s too late, whether your “beach body” goal is to build muscle, lose a couple of pounds or drop a few dress sizes get the ball rolling now.

There is so much information out there on how and what to eat coming from experts, well-meaning people who share what they have done to reach their own goals, companies touting the value of their “magic bullet” product and research that swings back and forth like a pendulum so we really have no clue how to interpret what is useful information or not. I must admit I try to stick with the diet I created, “The Stubborn Fat Fix” and even then, there is always a little wiggle room to meet individual goals and preferences.

I wanted to share my thoughts with you to help you make better choices as you embark on getting to your goals for the summer.

One of the best pieces of information I have read in a long time is an article written by Dr. Jade Teta about a year ago. It is powerful and underscores the importance of individuality when considering what to eat.

Dr. Teta discusses what really matters in his article “A Calorie Is Sometimes Not  A  Calorie”. You can find it here at T Nation, http://www.t-nation.com/diet-fat-loss/a-calorie-is-sometimes-not-a-calorie.” What really matters and is most important to each of you who read this is that it incorporates personal factors (Hunger, Energy, Cravings, HEC) that should be considered higher priorities than a general  “scientific” formula (fewer calories consumed  =  weight loss) which may or may not work for many individuals.

I have always questioned the calorie theory. Nutrition sessions with my clients center on these same personal factors. Focus is always on getting more in tune with what I call your body’s communication signals (BCS) or ACE (appetite, cravings, energy levels) that should dictate your WOE (way of eating). Using general “blanket” calorie formulas, like  eat more calories to gain weight,  eat less to lose weight, is not a standard that people “need” to “stick” to because factors that influence individual BCS are much more important. As Dr. Teta says, “balance metabolism first”.

In a previous blog, I outline the consequences of metabolic overdrive, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/09/30/what-is-metabolic-overdrive/ , if you need to repair your metabolism and have a metabolic disadvantage due to issues with blood sugar. thyroid, the gut, adrenals etc…following a formula that looks good and makes sense on paper does not work in a complex body system. You may want to check this out, http://www.zoeharcombe.com/2014/06/the-calorie-theory-prove-it-or-lose-it/.

Here are my favorite key points from Jade Teta’s article:

  • The combo of sugar, fat, and salt will short-circuit your appetite centers, turning that “cheat meal” into a cheat week, or worse.
  • The standard “eat less, exercise more” approach to dieting leads to about 20-50% loss of lean tissue.
  • The quality of food you eat can directly affect the future efficiency of your metabolism.

139 days and counting, as you prepare for the summer and get your beach body on, my suggestion for the calorie theory is “Drop It Like It’s Hot”! Focus on what makes you tick; good quality food, stable and consistent energy and a naturally controlled appetite.

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2015 in appetite, diet, gain muscle, weight loss

 

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Fat Loss Is Just A Breath Away

 

It is easier to grasp the concept of gaining fat than understand the rationale behind fat loss. Explaining it sounds easy right. If you eat more food than your body needs, it gets bigger, you gain weight. This formula can work for building muscle too.

A popular analogy that many of you may have heard goes something like this, “you might as well glue that hot fudge sundae directly on to your hips”. We know that is not exactly how it works but “you get the picture”. The more you eat, the more you weigh.

Based on genetics, we may be able to predict where some of that extra fat might plant itself, the gut, the arms or legs. But once you are carrying extra weight and you lose it, what happens to it? Where does it go?

Some people think it leaves the body with the rest of the body’s waste and is flushed away. Others may tell you that fat is burned and leaves your body via sweat. Many experts will say that fat burned is fat converted to energy and  then “lost” as heat. While there is some truth to all this, these explanations do not fully answer the question, Where does the fat go when it is burned?

In order to answer this, you should know that fat is made up of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. When the bonds that bind these elements are broken fat is burned, http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/lowcarbliving/a/Is-Your-Low-Carb-Diet-Giving-You-Bad-Breath.htm.

80% of fat is lost via carbon dioxide (CO2=carbon and oxygen) through breathing.

20% of the fat is lost as water (H20=hydrogen and oxygen) in urine or through sweat.

Thank you Dr. Eric Westman for confirming this scientific fact. He compares fat burning to a burning candle. As the flame heats the candle, it becomes smaller similar to how body fat is burned. Body fat is mostly lost to the air we breathe and slowly we become smaller.

This chemical reaction may also explain why one may get funky breath when fat is burned as the primary source of energy for those following a very low carbohydrare ketogenic diet.

As fat is burned at a much higher more dense rate when in ketosis as compared with fat loss on a low fat diet, the oxidation of fat and ketones released via the breath (a sign of fat burning) will be more prominent. If you need to battle the bad breath beast, you may want to try these suggestions, http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/lowcarbliving/a/Is-Your-Low-Carb-Diet-Giving-You-Bad-Breath.htm. Just be assured that keto-breath may resolve itself after a couple of weeks.

So consider yourself in the know now. You now know what actually happens to fat when it is burned. Losing your fat is but a breath away.

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2015 in weight loss

 

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The Brains Role in “Frying” Fat : Brown Fat Burns Calories and Benefits Health

www.generalludd.com

While most people  are trying to lose fat, they may not realize the brain may be an important focus. The scientific journal “Cell” just published an animal study that describes the brain’s role in regulating the conversion (browning/”fat frying”) of inactive white storing fat (WAT) to metabolically active brown fat (BAT).

This research adds to others like my blog on the brain and gut connection, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/08/26/listen-to-your-gut/)  associating the brain’s role with physical health.

It seems that neurons (in the hypothalamus) work to burn calories and then actually changing inactive WAT fat to more active BAT burning fat. The whole process includes neurons, hormones and enzymes.

There are 3 types of body fat that are distinguished by color.  White fat (WAT) is stored and not active, it comprises 90% of the body’s fat. Brown fat (BAT, but should be termed BRAT LOL) actually works to burn calories, maintain blood sugar control and insulin sensitivity, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140723123944.htm. BAT can burn as much as 5 times more fat than beige fat. Beige fat is a mixture of WAT and BAT.

2 neurons found in the brain work synergistically with enzymes, leptin and insulin:

Agouti-related protein expressing (AgRP) neurons encourage white fat storage otherwise known as “hunger” neurons that lend itself to storing white fat.

Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) are satiety signaling neurons that stimulate white fat “frying” or changing it to beige fat help to protect against fat storage and promote obesity. POMC neurons were found to be involved with insulin and leptin (produced by WAT) resistance that contribute to obesity blood sugar control and satiety.

Researchers from Monash University in Australia completed a study, http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/41912/title/Brain-s-Role-in-Browning-White-Fat/, where enzymes (phosphatases also found in POMC neurons) were removed from the signaling reactions of insulin and leptin.

When the communication signals for insulin and leptin increased so did beige fat, BAT became more active while WAT decreased signifying the relationship between the brain and body weight and metabolism.

There have also been findings on fat color and environmental influences. Exercise can “fry” white fat so that it acts like BAT via a hormone called irisin and increases UCP1 making brown fat more active.

Cold temperatures have been found to increase beige fat activity. In a Japanese study male volunteers burned almost 300 more calories while sitting in a room at 63 degrees Fahrenheit for 2 hours. PET-CT scan showed an increase in beige fat activity.

There is even talk over brown seaweed, licorice root and hot peppers having similar capabilities.

The bad news for those who are overweight, they may not be able to convert white fat to brown fat as easily as their thin peers.

As science tries to get a better grip on understanding the brains role in activating calorie burning brown fat and putting the pieces of the puzzle together in order to understand BAT’s role in health, there is one thing for sure the darker the body fat the better.

On a side note, I just wanted to take a moment to acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of Martin Luther King Jr. on this day. Thank you, sir.

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2015 in FAT, insulin, weight loss

 

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