most of you probably heard that the lightbulb shape of an avocado looks like a uterus, and it supports reproductive health as well... SO IT'S AVOCADO? NEW by Dr Mercola
Eliminating grain carbs is one of the best and easiest ways to normalize your weight and support your health, but when you cut down on non-vegetable carbs, you need to increase your intake of healthy fats.
Avocados are an excellent source. They're especially rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat that is easily burned for energy, which you need more of once you start to remove those carbs.
Improved weight management is in fact one of the health benefits of avocadoconsumption, according to recent research, and its high-fat, low-sugar content is part and parcel of this effect.
On most days, I will add a whole avocado to my salad, which I eat for lunch. This increases my healthy fat and calorie intake without seriously increasing my protein or carbohydrate intake. Since avocados are also high in potassium, they will also help balance your vitally important potassium to sodium ratio.
Avocado for Lunch May Help You Manage Your WeightAccording to research published in the Nutrition Journal eating just one-half of a fresh avocado with lunch may satiate you if you're overweight, which will help prevent unnecessary snacking later
The study also found that avocados appear helpful for regulating blood sugar levels, which is important for most people, considering that one in four American are either diabetic or pre-diabetic. As reported by the featured article in Medical News Today
"For their study, the researchers wanted to see how avocado consumption impacted a person's satiety, blood sugar and insulin response, and food consumption following a meal.
The investigators recruited 26 healthy, overweight adults. Over five sessions, participants were required to eat their normal breakfast followed by one of three lunch test meals. These were:
A standard lunch with no avocado
A lunch containing avocado (the avocado replaced other foods), or
A standard lunch with half of a fresh avocado added"
Over the next five hours, the participants were asked to rate their appetite using a visual analog scale. Blood glucose and insulin were also measured before lunch and at specific intervals over three hours following their meal.
Those in the latter group, who ate half an avocado with their standard lunch, reported being 40 percent less hungry three hours after their meal, and 28 percent less hungry at the five-hour mark, compared to those who did not eat avocado for lunch. They also reported feeling 26 percent more satiated after their meal compared to those who didn't eat avocado.
Why Majority of People Could Benefit from Eating AvocadoThis is not very surprising when you consider that frequent hunger is oftentimes a major clue that you're not eating correctly. As a general rule, most people likely need upwards of 50-85 percent healthy fat in their diet, along with high amounts ofvegetable carbs, moderate-to-low amounts of high-quality protein, and very little, if any, non-vegetable or grain carbs.
Fat is far more satiating than carbs, so if you have cut down on carbs and feel ravenous, thinking you "can't do without the carbs," remember this is a sign that you haven't replaced them with sufficient amounts of fat. You do want to make sure you're adding the correct types of fat though. Sources of healthy fats include:
Olives and olive oil Coconuts and coconut oil, as well as other unheated organic nut oils Butter made from raw grass-fed organic milk Raw nuts, particularly macadamia nuts Organic pastured egg yolks Grass-fed and finished meats The featured study also found that even though the addition of half an avocado increased the participants' calorie intake, it did not cause an increase in blood sugar levels, beyond what was observed in those eating the standard lunch. This is one of the major benefits of replacing non-vegetable carbs with healthy fats of all kinds, as fats in general do not negatively affect your blood sugar and insulin levels.
The Importance of Maintaining Optimal Sodium-Potassium RatioAs mentioned earlier, avocados are also high in potassium, and may in fact be ideal for helping you balance your potassium to sodium ratio, which is critical for optimal health and disease prevention. Imbalance in this ratio can not only lead to hypertension (high blood pressure) but also contribute to a number of other diseases, including:
Heart disease and stroke Memory decline Osteoporosis Ulcers and stomach cancer Kidney stones Cataracts Erectile dysfunction Rheumatoid arthritis
Heart disease, which is the second leading killer of Americans, is perhaps of particular concern. According to a 2011 federal study into sodium and potassium intake, those at greatest risk of cardiovascular disease were those who got a combination of too much sodium along with too little potassium.
The research, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, was one of the first and largest US studies to evaluate the relationship of salt, potassium and heart disease deaths.
According to Dr. Elena Kuklina, one of the lead authors of the study at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), potassium may actually neutralize the heart-damaging effects of salt. Tellingly, those who ate a lot of salt and very little potassium were more than twice as likely to die from a heart attack as those who ate about equal amounts of both nutrients.
According to a 1985 article in The New England Journal of Medicine, titled "Paleolithic Nutrition," our ancient ancestors got about 11,000 mg of potassium a day, and about 700 mg of sodium. This equates to nearly 16 times more potassium than sodium. Compare that to the Standard American Diet where daily potassium consumption averages about 2,500 mg (the RDA is 4,700 mg/day), along with 3,600 mg of sodium.
The easiest way to achieve this imbalance is by consuming a diet of processed foods, which are notoriously low in potassium, while being high in both sodium and fructose—another dietary factor that is clearly associated with chronic disease, including heart disease. Bananas are typically recommended for their high potassium content. But with twice the potassium of a banana, and a minimal amount of fructose, avocados are an obviously better choice. When you add in the heart-healthy fats found in avocado, it stands out as a near-perfect food all around.
Avocado May Also Help Preserve Your Heart HealthPrevious research also suggests avocado may be among the healthiest foods you can eat to protect your heart and cardiovascular health. One such study, published in November, 2012,found that eating one-half of a fresh medium Hass avocado with a hamburger (made with 90 percent lean beef) significantly inhibited the production of the inflammatory compound Interleukin-6 (IL-6), compared to eating a burger without fresh avocado.
Also, just like avocado does not raise your blood sugar levels, fresh avocado did not increase triglyceride levels beyond what was observed when eating the burger alone, despite the avocado supplying extra fat and calories. According to lead author David Heber, MD, PhD, the findings offer "promising clues" about avocado's ability to benefit vascular function and heart health.
Researchers have also concluded that avocado can help improve lipid profiles in both healthy individuals and those with mild hypercholesterolemia (elevated cholesterol levels). In one such study,healthy individuals saw a 16 percent decrease of serum total cholesterol level following a one-week long diet high in monounsaturated fat from avocados. In those with elevated cholesterol levels, the avocado diet resulted in a 17 percent decrease of serum total cholesterol, and a 22 percent decrease of both LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, along with an 11 percent increase of the so-called "good" HDL cholesterol.
Avocado—A Powerhouse of Good NutritionAccording to the California Avocado Commission, a medium Hass avocado contains about:
22.5 grams of fat, two-thirds of which is monounsaturated
3 grams of total carbohydrate
Less than one gram of fructose per one ounce serving
The fact that avocados are so low in fructose is another great boon of this fruit. They also provide close to 20 essential health-boosting nutrients, including:
Fiber (approximately eight percent of your daily recommended fiber intake)
Potassium (more than twice the amount found in a banana)
Due to its beneficial raw fat content, avocado also enables your body to more efficiently absorb fat-soluble nutrients (such as alpha- and beta-carotene, and lutein) from any other food eaten in conjunction with it. One 2005 study,found that adding avocado to salad allowed the volunteers to absorb three to five times more carotenoids antioxidant molecules, which help protect your body against free radical damage!
New Avocado ResearchDave Kekich is one of my good friends and he recently told me about an exciting phytonutrient called mannaheptulose, found in UNRIPENED avocados. It seems to have many benefits that are ascribed to calorie restriction, but also seems to be really useful for increasing strength and endurance. What I really like about it is that it’s not a supplement. What I have recently started doing is cutting up an unripe avocado into about 20 parts and freezing them. Then once a day I take out a piece and chew it.
How Avocados are MadeThis short documentary reveals the integral role of bees and butterflies in the production of avocados, as well as the importance of other complex ecosystems in the fruiting process.
Good News: Even Conventionally-Grown Avocados Are Free of Harmful ChemicalsAvocados are also one of the safest fruits in terms of chemical contamination, which means there's virtually no need to spend extra money on organic varieties. I even sent out more than six dozen samples of organic and conventionally-grown avocados for independent toxicology testing,add the results showed no detectable presence of herbicides or phenoxy herbicides in or on either variety .
The avocados I sent in were from a variety of growers in different countries, sold in several major grocery stores, including Whole Foods, and they all tested free and clear of harmful chemicals. Moreover, should they have been exposed to some form pesticide, the thick skin will protect the inner fruit of the avocado from the chemicals. Either way, the extremely low risk of toxic contamination makes avocados a clear winner, and I strongly recommend making them a key part of your diet.
The Best Way to Peel an AvocadoSpeaking of the skin, how you de-skin your avocado can affect how much of its valuable phytonutrients you get out of it. UCLA research has shown that the greatest concentration of beneficial carotenoids, for example, is located in the dark green fruit closest to the inside of the peel. In 2010, the California Avocado Commission issued guidelines for getting the most out of your avocado by peeling it the right way,To preserve the area with the greatest concentration of antioxidants, you're best off peeling the avocado with your hands, as you would a banana:
First, cut the avocado length-wise, around the seed
Holding each half, twist them in the opposite directions to separate them from the seed
Remove the seed
Cut each half, lengthwise
Next, using your thumb and index finger, simply peel the skin off each piece
Avocado Is a Great Staple FoodI typically have an avocado every day and harvest many of them from my avocado tree. The easiest way to eat an avocado is raw, either added to your salad, which is what I typically do, or you can eat them alone. A dash of Himalayan salt and some ground pepper will spice up the flavor, if you like. But there are many other ways to include avocado in your diet as well. For example, you can:
Use avocado as a fat replacement in baking. Simply replace the fat called for (such as oil, butter or shortening) with an equal amount of avocado
Use it as a first food for babies, in lieu of processed baby food
Add it to soups
For hundreds of unique recipes that include avocado—from salads to dessert whip and everything in between—check out the California Avocado Commission's Website.If optimal health and weight is your goal, there's no getting around your diet. And contrary to popular belief, it's the sugar and fructose in your diet that is packing on unwanted pounds—not the fat! So, if you want to lose weight, you really need to pay careful attention to avoid sugars, and that includes all grains, even organic ones, as all grains quickly break down into sugar in your body.
Replace them instead with healthful fats such as avocado, and you'll be off to a good start. Avocados also provide close to 20 essential health-boosting nutrients, and enable your body to more efficiently absorb fat-soluble nutrients in other foods eaten in conjunction with it, so it's an excellent choice as a fat replacement or addition to virtually any dish. All in all, avocado may be one of the most beneficial superfoods out there, and may be particularly valuable if you're struggling with insulin and leptin resistance, diabetes, or any other risk factors for heart disease.
WISE ADVISES FROM OUR ANCESTORS (IN RUSSIAN. PLEASE HIT TRANSLATE BUTTON TO READ) NEW
МУДРЫЕ СОВЕТЫ ПРЕДКОВ ====================== Воду пей перед едой – будешь долго молодой. Коже рук вернёт былое сок чесночный и алоэ. Гепатиту гибель дарят корни ревеня в отваре. Чем старее мужичок, тем важней ему лучок! Вену видно изнутри – уксус яблочный вотри. Натощак зуб чеснока – сутки вирус в дураках. Мёд, лимоны и чеснок одышку пустят наутек. Съешь лимон и мед, и кашель отойдет. Мёд с морковью, облепихой язву ног осадят лихо. Ревматизм, натри и грей соком редьки почерней. Болят суставы и спина – вотри репейник - семена. Артрит, подагру и склероз питай арбузами до слёз. Если есть грибок в ногах – по траве носись в лугах. При чесотке немореной кожу парь в воде соленой. Настой из семечек укропа при энурезе чаще лопай. Лист осиновый приложь – геморрой не будет гож! В стопы ног лимон вотри – боль не явится внутри. Нужный в яблоках пектин гонит прочь холестерин. Фарингит гнетут лимон плюс шиповник, мед и сон. Огурец, морковь и свёкла гонят камни смесью сока.
Приложи к радикулиту лист от хрена свежий, битый. Отвар сухих корней арбуза смоет твой колит из пуза. Малярии нет в помине, коль спишь в ворохе полыни. Коль желудок портит стул – подорожник ешь, как мул. Скрой живицей недуг ног, чтоб без боли шастать мог. Коль заел фурункулез – каждый день ешь лук до слёз. Сок свекольный чаще пей, чтоб не знал живот камней. Хочешь быть всегда здоров – пчёл паси, не докторов! Прячь ожог, где будет пир, под картофельный мундир. Насморк, кашель, голова – лук с медком прими сперва. Чтоб срастались переломы, ешь скорлупки до истомы. Три петрушкой с чесноком дерматит, коль есть на ком! Можжевельник - масло с ягод лечит раны так, как надо. В глухоту гож клевер красный – пей отварчик ежечасно. Пей настой цветков от липы и мать-мачехи при гриппе. Огуречный сок с морковным не оставят лик бескровным. Артроз и судороги ног боятся валеных сапог, насыпь в те валенки гороху, ходи в них чаще и не охай! Коль соли в пятке допекли, за можжевельником беги – настой на водке из корней перед едой по ложке пей. Плохо спишь, боль в голове – съешь капусты дольки две. Нерв седалищный болит – грей кирпич, пусть с ним и спит. Прополис в водочке с аиром зубную боль оставит с миром. Геморрой пройдёт без крови – пей, как чай, ботву моркови.
Прополис в спирте вместе с мёдом ангину вылечит на годы. Соки пей, меняй продукты – проживёшь здоровым фруктом. Ожог закрой морковью с тёрки, чуть облепихи иль касторки. Сгодится может и медок, коль не слизнет его едок. Боль в ногах – парь в чане смело вместе с травкой чистотела. Кипяти овёс фуражный в родниковой воде, против астмы пей. И даже… камни выйдут налегке.
russians love their pickles: sauerkraut (that every household makes in its own way), cucumbers, and other fermented vegetables. they marinate everything - even watermelons and apples (the latter is not my type of thing but my grandma made them for human consumption too)... russians also adore kefir - type of fermented milk (butter milk) ... why? i understand the pickles are excellent with vodka - they just go together like best friends or brother and sister but why kefi?... please find out more:
DR MERCOLA TALKS ABOUT GOOD BACTERIAS
Your gastrointestinal tract houses some 100 trillion bacteria—about two to three pounds worth. In all, the bacteria outnumber your body’s cells by about 10 to 1.
Your intestinal bacteria are part of your immune system, and researchers are discovering that microbes of all kinds play instrumental roles in countless areas of your health. For example, beneficial bacteria, also known as probiotics, have been shown to:
Produce vitamins, absorb minerals, and eliminate toxins
Control asthma and reduce risk of allergies
Benefit your mood and mental health
Boost weight loss
Beneficial bacteria also control the growth of disease-causing bacteria by competing for nutrition and attachment sites in your colon. This is of immense importance, as pathogenic bacteria and other less beneficial microbes can wreak havoc with your health if they gain the upper hand. It can also affect your weight, as you’ll see below.
For all of these reasons, and more, I always recommend a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods along with cultured or fermented foods. A high-quality probiotic supplement can also be a helpful ally to restore healthful balance to your microbiotia—especially when taking antibiotics.
The Diet-Bacteria-Weight ConnectionBacterial imbalance in your gut can be made worse by processed foods and foods that have been pasteurized or sterilized. Other factors affecting your gut flora include where you live, your age, your stress level, and any health issues you may have. Like processed foods, sugar also promotes the growth of disease-causing yeasts and fungi.
Symptoms of a yeast (candida) overgrowth include fatigue, depression, irritability, headaches, problems concentrating, muscle weakness, recurrent vaginal and urinary tract infections, athlete's foot, jock itch, persistent heartburn, indigestion, constipation, swollen joints, nasal congestion, and sore throat.
In case you don’t have reason enough yet to re-evaluate your sugar and fructose intake, here’s another twist in the sugar-obesity connection: researchers have discovered a difference in gut bacteria between the overweight and those of normal weight.2
In the obese, a bacterial strain known as firmicutes is found in much greater abundance than in leaner individuals. In those of normal weight, the bacteroidetes strain is in greater supply.
The firmicutes bacteria appear to be much better than the bacteroidetes strain at turning calories from complex sugars into fat. As those who are overweight begin to slim down, the bacterial balance shifts from predominantly firmicutes to predominantly bacteroidetes. Research published last year discovered that as much as 20 percent of the substantial weight loss achieved from gastric bypass, a popular weight loss surgery, is actually due to shifts in the balance of bacteria in your digestive tract.
Bacteria Can Affect Your Food Cravings, and Weight Loss SuccessAccording to the most recent study, a strain of friendly bacteria called Lactobacillus rhamnosus also appears to be quite helpful for weight loss in women.4 As reported in the featured article:
“The controlled clinical trial was set up so that the first 12 weeks women were guided to eat less food and some were additionally given the Lactobacillus rhamnosus. After 12 weeks the amount of weight loss was greater in the group receiving the friendly flora supplement.
Over the next 12 weeks the dietary restrictions were lifted, and the friendly flora was continued. Those women not taking Lactobacillus rhamnosus now gained weight, whereas the friendly flora group continued to lose weight. The weight loss benefit was linked to measurements of the bacterial profile of the digestive tract. This study is the latest to show that the balance of power in the digestive tract is a metabolic variable of high importance and nothing to ignore as part of a long-term successful weight loss plan.”
As it relates to weight management, one hypothesis states that your gut bacteria may in fact be in control of your appetite. Recent research suggests there’s a positive-feedback loop between the foods you crave and the composition of the microbiota in your gut that depend on those nutrients for their survival. Microbes that thrive on sugar, for example, can signal your brain to eat more sweets. Other studies have shown that certain bacteria found in your gut can produce insulin resistance and weight gain by triggering chronic low-grade inflammation in your body. Three such culprits include:
Staphylococcus aureus (an antibiotic-resistant strain of bacteria)
The human adenovirus- (a cause of respiratory infections and pinkeye)
Yet another recent study revealed that a breath test of the gases given off by your gut bacteria might actually be able to predict your likelihood of becoming obese. The study found that people with high levels of hydrogen and methane in their breath are more likely to have a higher body-mass index (BMI) and proportion of body fat. This, the researchers believe, may be because the related gut bacteria influence your body’s ability to extract calories from food, leading to weight gain.
Diets, Not Borders, Dictate Gut BacteriaIt’s important to understand that while your gut microbes may have a tremendous say in you bodily processes, YOU are ultimately in control of your intestinal microflora--through the foods you eat. Science News recently ran an article about how local diets dictate the bacterial balance found in residents. For example, despite living on opposite ends of the Earth, people in Malawi and the Guahibo of Venezuela have similar microbial makeup, courtesy of the similarities between their native diets.
“Americans, on the other hand, have a distinctive microbiome with about 25 percent less diversity than indigenous Venezuelans,” the article states.
One of the primary differences between the diets is meat consumption. Malawian and Guahibo diets are high in corn and cassava, with an occasional piece of meat. Americans, on the other hand, are far more carnivorous, and also eat far more bread, lettuce and tomatoes, potatoes, pasta, milk and dairy products. The microbial makeup of the three groups reveals these dietary differences. Needless to say, altering your diet has a direct impact on the microbial community residing in your gut—for better or worse. According to Science News
“A more recent study found that major diet shifts can change the mix of gut microbes noticeably in just a day. Omnivores switching to a diet of all animal products saw the biggest change, as some bacteria boomed and others declined. Microbes settled back to their previous profiles a day or two after subjects returned to their usual diets...” [Emphasis mine]
A More Complete Understanding of the Gut Could Change Modern Medicine...There are three major collaborative efforts underway that help deepen our understanding of the human microbiome:
The International Human Microbiome Consortium
The US National Institute of Health’s Human Microbiome Project
So far, the NIH’s Human Microbiome Project alone has produced 190 scientific papers, along with a repository of resources that scientists can access to explore the relationships between human gut bacteria and disease. The American Gut Project decided to take it a step further by allowing the American public to participate. All the gathered information from this project will eventually be made public. It’s an extremely ambitious project seeking to identify the parameters for the ideal gut flora, and how your diet affects it.
What’s particularly exciting about the American Gut Project is the fact that it will allow us to really evaluate and compare the effects of a very diverse conglomeration of lifestyles. Scientific studies almost always focus on carefully chosen groups of people who are studied for a specific purpose, typically to confirm or debunk a hypothesis. This project, on the other hand, will crack the lid open on the effects on gut flora of a myriad of lifestyle choices, by people of all ethnicities and ages.
If we can better understand how diet and lifestyle—whether by choice or necessity—affect your microbial makeup, doctors may eventually be able to precisely address health problems and disease through dietary prescriptions known to shift the microbial population in one direction or another.
Diet and Lifestyle Dos and Don’tsGranted, I don’t see any point in waiting for such confirmations. The fundamentals are already quite well understood, and include a rather concise list of dos and don’ts. When it comes to diet, you want to eat mostly whole, fresh,unadulterated foods, taking pains to avoid sugars and processed/pasteurized and genetically engineered foods of all kinds. Add to that a healthy amount of traditionally fermented foods each day and you’re off to a good start.
A strong case can be made for eating organic to protect your gut flora as agricultural chemicals take a heavy toll on beneficial microbes—both in the soil in which the food is grown, and in your body. Glyphosate (Roundup), used in particularly hefty amounts on genetically engineered crops, appears to be among the worst of the most widely used chemicals in food production. As for general lifestyle advice, you’ll want to avoid well-known culprits that kill beneficial bacteria, such as:
Antibiotics (also note that most store-bought beef typically comes from cattle raised with antibiotics. To avoid getting a low dose of antibiotics in every piece of meat you eat, make sure your meat is grass-fed and finished)
Foods ‘for Life’In contrast to the pesticide effect of processed foods and sugar on the state of your health, fermented foods act as natural fertilizers, if you will—providing nutrients and promoting growth of healthy bacteria in your digestive tract. For ages, humans have used fermented foods to improve intestinal health. As an added boon, fermented foods are also some of the best chelators and detox agents available, meaning they can help rid your body of a wide variety of toxins, including heavy metals and pesticides. Examples of healthy fermented foods include:
Sauerkraut, pickles, and other fermented vegetables
Fermented dairy products, such as yoghurt and kefir made from raw (unpasteurized) dairy
To Be ‘Alive,’ the Food Must Be Unprocessed and Not Pasteurized...It is important to note that traditionally fermented foods are not the equivalent of the same foods, commercially processed and pasteurized.Fortunately, preparing your own fermented foods at home is quite easy, and very cost effective. For instructions, please see my previous interview with Caroline Barringer, a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP), and an expert in the preparation of the gut-nourishing foods prescribed in Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride's Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Nutritional Program.
Caroline recommends eating about a quarter to half a cup (2 to 4 oz) of fermented vegetables or other cultured food, such as raw yoghurt, with one to three meals per day. Bear in mind that since cultured foods are efficient detoxifiers, you may experience detox symptoms if you introduce too many at once. So start with very small servings—as little as a teaspoon of fermented vegetables, for example, or even just a spoon or two of the juice—and slowly work your way up to the quarter to half cup serving size. This way your intestinal microbiota has the chance to adjust.
For Optimal Health, Pay Attention to Your GutTwo things are clear:
Sufficient amounts of friendly bacteria are fundamental to your good health. It’s impossible to be optimally healthy if your gut’s bacterial balance is out of whack.
Your lifestyle –your diet, medications, the antibacterial cleansers you use, and other factors outside your control – are working together to compromise the number of lifesaving friendly bacteria in your digestive system.
Maintaining a good balance of gut bacteria through diet is one of the most important things you can do to increase your chances of remaining healthy and vital for a lifetime. Remember, a gut-healthy diet is one that is rich in whole, unprocessed, unsweetened foods, along with traditionally fermented or cultured foods. And, although I'm not a major proponent of taking many supplements (as I believe the majority of your nutrients need to come from food), probiotics is an exception if you don’t eat fermented foods on a regular basis.
BLUE BAY CHEESE
there are Blue Bay Cheese Appreciation Society and Andrei K, the owner's treats for Bohemian Rhapsody Club - I am so glad had a chance to go to their Frankston shop today @8 Young Street. The place is cool and airconditioned inside - very nice feeling too - the prices are awesome - lots of yummy russian and european deli, lots of very rare products and wide selection plus - and very welcoming service. We have healthy goat cheese variety ready to be opened for tomorrow
FOODS THEY ASKED US TO HATE BUT WE LOVED IT...
I do not know about you but when I slent summer in my grandma's house in Ukraine with my cousins the kids were always spoiled with what??? delicatessen of anima; organs like chicken (or more rarely - veal or pig) heart, liver, not yet developed eggs, stomach etc etc - it was a treat from grandma and no one could have a taste of it except me... I've never tried anything more tasty and more nutritious in my life... here we go... I do not have a source link for this articl as it was sent to me by a friend who is a doctor-naturopath, not unnaturopath indeed... I knew where everything was located inside the chicken as they asked me to clean it after it was feathered... I believe nowadays kids do not even know how chicken looks like forget about hunting...
The consumption of organ meats has fallen out of favor in the West, which may be a mixed blessing. Liver, kidney, heart and other animal organs from organically raised, grass-fed animals are some of the most nutrient-rich foods you can eat.
Unfortunately, that’s not how most food animals are raised these days. In today’s world of high calorie/high carbohydrate but low nutrientfoods, most people would benefit greatly from adding these superfoods back into their diet.
However, I advise against eating organ meats from animals raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs). The diets, veterinary drugs and living conditions of such animals are not likely to result in healthy organs, so be sure to find out where the organs came from, should you decide to pick some up at your local grocer.
Many traditional cultures and their medicine men—including Native Americans—believe that eating the organs from a healthy animal supports the organs of the eater.
For example, a traditional way of treating a person with a weak heart was to feed the person the heart of a healthy animal. Similarly, eating the brains of a healthy animal was believed to support clear thinking, and animal kidneys were fed to people suffering from urinary maladies.
There are countless reports about the success of these types of traditional practices. We can thank Dr. Weston A. Price for an enormous body of research about the health benefits of traditional diets.
The 'Isaac Newton of Nutrition'
Dr. Weston A. Price was a Cleveland dentist who has been called the “Isaac Newton of Nutrition.” Dr. Price traveled all over the world studying the dietary practices of healthy people from traditional cultures.
What he found was that nearly every culture placed a high value on consuming animals in their entirety, making use of the organs, blood, bones, and everything else—a far cry from Western culinary snobbery, which pretty much limits animal foods to muscle tissue and nothing else.
Traditional preparations involve a good deal of work in terms of cleaning, trimming, soaking, pounding and so on because membranes, blood vessels and other inedible parts must be removed from animal organs before they can be consumed, requiring significant time and labor. Why did they bother with all of this work?
They knew that eating these organs would support the natural functioning of their bodies. And they were right—the nutritional benefits of organ meats are now being confirmed by modern science.
Organ meat is a nutritional powerhouse, loaded with vitamins, minerals, amino acids and other compounds vital to your health. Liver in particular is packed with nutrients, which is why predatory animals eat it first and why it has been so highly prized throughout history.
Unfortunately, organ meats have been unfairly demonized in the West thanks to some persistent dietary myths, including beliefs that animal fat and cholesterol are bad for your health. Nothing could be farther from the truth!
Dr. Price, who studied this extensively, found that native cultures who maintained traditional diets—whole foods from plants and animals—had excellent teeth and were free of the chronic diseases plaguing society today. They experienced very little cancer, heart disease, diabetes, mental illness, or even birth defects.But why? What accounts for such drastic health differences?
Traditional versus Contemporary Diets When Dr. Price analyzed and compared the nutrient value of foods eaten by traditional versus modern cultures, he found that a traditional diet provided at least four times the water-soluble vitamins, calcium and other minerals, and at least 10 times the fat-soluble vitamins, such as A and D.
These fat-soluble vitamins are present only in animal fats—butter, lard, egg yolks, fish oils, and foods with fat-rich cellular membranes such as liver and other organ meats. Of course, these are the foods now shunned by Westerners as unhealthful. Is it any wonder that adopting a modern diet spells disaster for your health?
The Offal Truth The consumable parts of an animal that are not skeletal muscle are called offal, which literally means “off fall,” or the pieces that fall off a carcass when it’s butchered. This includes the heart, liver, lungs, kidneys, pancreas and all other abdominal organs, as well as the tails, feet, brains, tongue, and yes, even the testicles.
In the US, the term “organ meats” is more commonly used, and when these parts come from birds, they are usually referred to as giblets.Sweetbreads refer to the thymus gland or pancreas of a young cow, lamb or pig.
In nature, most animals go straight for the organs of their prey, saving the muscle meats for later. This is because animals instinctively know that organ meats are the densest source of nutrition. In fact, organs are the superfoods of the animal kingdom. This is why “glandulars,”supplements made from dried tissues of animal organs and glands, pack some powerful therapeutic punches when taken under the guidance of a skilled medical practitioner.
Organ Meats: The Superfoods of the Animal World Organ meats offer a rich mélange of nutrients your body needs for optimal function, in concentrations hard to find anywhere else. The most significant ones are outlined in the following table
The Discovery of “Fat-Soluble Activators” One of Dr. Price’s most significant contributions to nutrition science was the concept of fat-soluble activators, which serve as potent catalysts for mineral absorption. Without them, minerals cannot by used by your body, no matter how plentiful they may be in your diet. Dr. Price was quite ahead of his time—modern research has since validated most of his findings.
Dr. Price identified three primary fat-soluble activators: vitamins A and D, and one he called “Activator X,” because he didn’t know exactly what it was, only that it was present in certain fatty parts of animals (especially the organ meats) that fed on young green growing plants or microorganisms, as well as in oily fish and shellfish. This powerful nutrient is now believed to be vitamin K2, a nutrient that is far more important than most people realize.
Vitamin D, is required for mineral metabolism, healthy bones, optimal nervous system function, muscle tone, reproductive health, insulin production, and protection from depression and every type of chronic illness, from cancer to heart disease. Vitamin D’s list of benefits keeps growing with each passing year. However, it’s important to realize that these nutrients are dependent on the animal having been raised and fed in a natural manner. As stated by the Weston A. Price Foundation:
“The vital roles of these fat-soluble vitamins and the high levels found in the diets of healthy traditional peoples confirm the importance of pasture-feeding livestock. If domestic animals are not consuming green grass, vitamins A and K will be largely missing from their fat, organ meats, butterfat and egg yolks; if the animals are not raised in the sunlight, vitamin D will be largely missing from these foods.”
Vitamin A Myth-Busting Impressively abundant in organ meats from pastured animals, Vitamin A is a catalyst for multiple biochemical processes. Vitamin A is vital for prevention of birth defects, prevention of infection, hormone production, optimal thyroid function, good digestion, good vision, and healthy bones and blood. Without it, your body cannot utilize protein, minerals and water-soluble vitamins. Vitamin A is also an antioxidant that helps protect you from pollutants, free radicals, and cancer.
Contrary to what many vegetarians believe, the type of vitamin A obtained from plants (carotene) is much different than the animal-derived form. Carotenes from vibrantly colored fruits and vegetable are a great antioxidant and can be converted into true vitamin A in your upper intestine, but many people are unable to convert it, especially if their diets contain insufficient fat.
Dr. Price discovered that the diets of traditional peoples contained at least 10 timesmore vitamin A from animal sources than found in the American diet of his day. That difference may be even starker now, as his research was done decades ago.
When people began taking synthetic vitamin A supplements, we began to see vitamin A toxicity. But this does not happen with natural vitamin A from real, whole foods. Therefore, the advice to refrain from organ meats during pregnancy is unfounded. It is best to obtain your vitamin A from natural sources like yellow butter, egg yolks, and organ meats.
Please realize that antibiotics, laxatives, fat substitutes and cholesterol-lowering drugs interfere with vitamin-A absorption. Another common myth is that organ meats cause gout. This is a warped, oversimplified misinterpretation of the biochemical processes that lead to gout. Gout results from a buildup of uric acid, which is more a function of insulin resistance related to overconsumption of refined carbohydrates and sugar. Uric acid is a byproduct of your body’s metabolism of dietary sugar—especially fructose.
Excess dietary protein with insufficient dietary fat may also raise your risk for gout. This is why lean meats should not be consumed without adding a healthful fat, and the leaner organ meats (such as the heart and liver) are no exception. The one nutrient most protective against gout is vitamin A, because it helps protect your kidneys—healthy kidneys prevent the buildup of uric acid by excreting it in your urine. Therefore, organ meats actually protect you from gout, rather than cause it.
Liver—Nature’s Most Concentrated Source of Vitamin A Liver is the most commonly consumed organ meat in the US—and for good reason: it’s one of the most nutrient-dense foods in existence. Liver is held sacred by many African tribes, and practically every cuisine has liver specialties. It simply contains more nutrients, gram for gram, than any other food
· Liver is nature’s most concentrated source of vitamin A (retinol) · It contains an abundant, highly usable form of iron · Three ounces of beef liver contains almost three times as much choline as one egg · Liver is one of the best sources of copper, folic acid, cholesterol, and purines · It also contains a mysterious “anti-fatigue factor,” making it a favorite among athletes
The liver is often described as an organ that “filters” your blood of toxins, which may seem concerning in terms of eating it. In reality, laboratory analysis has proven that liver is actually completely safe for consumption and has no higher concentration of toxins than the rest of the body. This is due to the fact that your liver is not really a “filter,” but more of a chemical processing plant, rendering toxins inert and shuttling them out of your body. If your liver contains large amounts of toxins, so do you! And the same goes for the animals you consume. What this means is, the cleaner the animal whose organs you are consuming, the cleaner your food will be, whether it’s a steak or an organ
IMPORTANT: Know Where Your Meat Comes From In another article written by a meat processor, Bob Martin explains the differences between products derived from grain-fed animals versus from grass-fed animals. He reports that many grain-finished livers are “condemned,” whereas this does not happen with grass-finished livers. He is very straight in his recommendation to avoid meat and organs coming from animals that are grain-fed or grain-finished, such as those produced by CAFOs.
As stated earlier, it is safest to restrict all of your meats to pastured, or at the very least, grass-finished animals. In the wake of mad cow disease, it is particularly important to consume animals raised on pasture and fed a biologically appropriate diet, which virtually eliminates their risk of mad cow disease, as well as many other dangerous contaminants
Recipes and Other Offal Resources If you haven’t been eating organ meats lately, perhaps you abandoned them because they were thrust upon you as a child, or maybe you’ve never been able to get past their appearance. They look like entrails because they ARE entrails, which are difficult to disguise. You just may have to get over it... for the sake of your health! Fortunately, organ meats don’t have to be the tough, dried out, overcooked liver-and-onions of yesteryear that were more like shoe leather than meat.
Finding good organ meat recipes can be somewhat of a challenge, as they are more of a niche specialty today—but they are out there. In order to make your journey a bit easier, I’ve assimilated a list of resources to perhaps inspire you into trying some new things. The following are merely a starting point—I’m sure you can find others. Paleo recipe websites often have interesting and unique organ meat recipes, and there are an abundance of those. Happy hunting!