Monday, April 29, 2013


If you have been diagnosed with osteoporosis or want to protect your bones from it, consider adding more fruit to your diet.  Fruits contain potassium which is important in protecting bones.  To keep your bones healthy be sure your diet includes honeydew and cantaloupe melons, bananas, plums, prunes, raisins, and other fruits.  What a tasty healthy tip!

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Do you ever take a look at your plate before you start eating?  If you don't, you should!  First of all, look at the quantity of food.  How big is the plate and how much food is it holding?  Secondly, what types of food are on your plate?  About half of your plate (this is especially important for diabetics) should be holding vegetables, and not just any vegetables!  We are talking a variety of colorful low carb vegetables, not french fries and onion rings.  Sorry 'bout that! :(  To complete that plate the other half should be divided in thirds, one-third for whole grains, one-third for beans, nuts, seeds, or low carb fruit, and the last third for protein including lean meat.  Studies have shown that the colorful vegetables are rich in vitamins and minerals that help prevent disease.  And a plate that looks like what I have described above will promote good blood glucose levels.  That is why I said above that it is important for diabetics.  It is also a good rule for anyone who cares about their health and their diet.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


I have lived with chronic pain most of my life.  I have several auto-immune diseases that cause this pain.  This started when I was in high school and has stayed with me all these years.  I have a prescription for pain medication that I do take occasionally but have found a lot of pain can be controlled by other measures.  Some types of exercise, ibuprofen, analgesic rubs, massage, etc all work well.  Another thing is diet.  While there is little scientific proof that diet can control pain, I believe it can.  I would suggest to anyone dealing with pain, especially fibromyalgia sufferers of which I am one, that they eat as many fruits and vegetables as possible.  Personally I do not care much for meat so that is an easy one for me.  If you are a carnivore, start to gradually replace a little of the meat you eat on a daily basis with some fruit and vegetables.  I am not talking about eating a steak that weighs a few ounces less and adding a few more french fries.  I am talking about real fruits and veggies!  Eat them raw when possible and cooking lightly by steaming or cooking just until tender.

Did you know that oxidative stess which is a cell-damaging process that takes place in the body- is usually higher in the bodies of people with fibromyalgia (a disease whose major indicator is pain) therefore it is thought to be a major contributor in the development of the illness.  Fruits and vegetables are loaded with antioxidants therefore doesn't it seem like a good idea to increase the fruits and vegetables in your diet if you suffer from fibromyalgia?  Give it a try and see what results you get.  And remember, food does not work like drugs.  You cannot expect results the same day you make a dietary change.  It can take weeks, even months, but it can be worth it to feel better!

Monday, April 22, 2013


"Cancer is a consequence of the complex interplay of genes and environment on the immune system, and diet, as part of the environment, plays a role that can influence cancer's development and treatment."  Gerry Mullin, MD, Contributing Editor to Nutrition in Clinical Practice.

The above is another repeat post for 2011.  This statement is important enough that it bears repeating!!

Saturday, April 20, 2013


I have followed Dr. Jullian Whitaker for over 20 years.  I credit many of the things I learned from him for my life and health today.  Twenty years ago I was spending almost as much time in the hospital as out.  I had doctors, specialists from all over the Dallas/Ft Worth metroplex, telling me and my family there was really nothing else to be done for me.  I was in the emergency room so much (usually middle of the night) they finally started keeping my chart at the desk with my doctor's permission to go ahead and start the IV pain meds along with other meds first then call the doctor.  I decided, with my doctor's permission, to research how I could improve my health.  Some of my research led me to Dr. Whitaker.  I signed up for his newletters, etc and started trying many of his suggestions.  I also followed through on other research. My doctors were amazed as they watched my health improve and they told me not to quit doing whatever I was doing.  Over the last 20 years my health has improved to where I feel as good now as I ever have in my life. So when I got this information from Dr. Whitaker, being a diabetic myself, I thought I would pass it along.  I love tea and drink it often although chamomile is not my favorite.  I do intend to add it to my tea canisters and thought you might want to add it, too, after reading the following:

Chamomile tea is well known for its calming effects. This tasty drink also boasts many other health benefits: It eases menstrual cramps, improves anxiety and sleep and treats the common cold. New research suggests that chamomile tea may also help people with diabetes.

Japanese scientists gave a group of rats with diabetes a chamomile extract every day for three weeks, while a control group received a placebo. Researchers found that the rats consuming chamomile had significantly lower blood glucose levels.

Studies show that chamomile can also suppress enzymes that are linked to an increased risk of complications commonly associated with diabetes, such as vision, kidney and nerve damage.

Of course, animal studies are a far cry from human clinical trials. But adding a cup or two of chamomile tea to your daily routine isn’t a bad idea - whether you have diabetes or not. Try drinking it with or right after meals, as chamomile has also been shown to aid in digestion and prevent heartburn and flatulence.

Yours in good health,
Dr. Whitaker

Friday, April 19, 2013


this is a recipe I posted on this blog back in 2011.  I often get requests for healthy smoothies so thought I would post this again.  (Reposts are on red blackground to alert they are reposts.)

This recipe is okay for diabetics and those watching their insulin levels because of its good protein to carbohydrate ratio.  

1 cup fat-free milk*
6-oz fat-free plain yogurt
2 tbsp walnuts
2 tbsp flaxseed meal
1/2 cup blueberries
dash of ground cinnamon

Pour milk into a blender container; add the yogurt, walnuts, flaxseed meal, and blueberries.  Sprinkle ground cinnamon over top.  Blend for 15 to 20 seconds until smooth.

*May substitute equal amount of low-fat calcium enriched soy milk.

Yield: 1 serving
384 calories, 22 g protein, 45 grams carbs, 6 g fiber, 16 g (1 saturated) fat, 7 mg cholesterol, 232 mg sodium

If low on potassium, use a banana instead of blueberries or add half a banana to the above.  Remember that changes the nutritional numbers!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013


It is the time of year when we see lots of good fresh berries at the markets.  Take advantage of these healthy berries for many reasons (often mentioned on this blog) but remember that berries are especially helpful in fighting off cancer.  According to Lisa Young, Ph.D, adjunct professor of nutrition at New York University, berries contain antioxidant compounds which may protect cells from damage linked to cancer.  They can also boost your immune system.

Colleen Doyle, M.S., R.D., director of nutrition and physical activity for the American Cancer Society, says, berries contain polyphenols, including ellagic acid and anthocyanins – antioxidants that counteract, reduce and repair damage to cells

Berries also contain an abundance of vitamin C and fiber which are potential cancer fighters.

So take advantage of berry season, but eat berries year round.  Berries are one of the best things you can add to your diet.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

On My Whole-Grain Kick Again!

I'm sure I often sound like a stuck record when it comes to whole-grains.  It is just that I want you to realize how much switching to whole-grains will improve your diet and therefore your health.  Let me give you a little incentive!  Did you realize that enriched, bleached all-purpose flour contains ingredients such as calcium peroxide which is used to bleach flour and improve dough strength, grain, and texture.  Bleached flour is milled and refined until almost all its natural whole-grain goodness is gone then it is bleached with chemicals like cholorine (or the peroxide mentioned above) to make it white.  Did you know that this white flour comes from red wheat?  If you want to use white flour, use 100% whole-wheat white flour.  This is a 100% whole grain flour that comes from white wheat grown mostly in Montana, Minnesota, etc, I believe.

You can't really see it in this picture but it says unbleached-white whole wheat.  That is what you need to look for rather than the typical red wheat flour that has been refined and bleached white.  This is not an endorsement of this particular brand but of the product itself.

Monday, April 15, 2013



"Breast cancer patients who keep insulin levels under control - a factor most often associated with diet and lifestyle - cut their risk of cancer recurrence in half and decrease cancer mortality by two-thirds."  Keith I Block, MD Medical Director of the Block Center for Integrative Cancer Treatment and Director of Integrative Medical Education at University of Illinois College of Medicine.

This is another repeat post.  It was the third post on this blog years ago but something so important I wanted to repeat it!

Saturday, April 13, 2013


"Most of us grew up with the idea that soda in moderation can be part of a healthy diet. But science is now telling us that those who drink just one serving a day have an increased risk of a heart attack. A can of regular soda packs the equivalent of 14 teaspoons of sugar, and unlike the white stuff in solid foods, liquid sugar in soda is absorbed by the body immediately. That's one reason why drinking soda regularly results in low levels of HDL, the protective cholesterol that prevents heart attacks. If friends or family members still drink regular soda, I tell them to quit it." --Jeff Ritterman, M.D., cardiologist in Richmond, CA 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


How about this one?  Would you believe those who keep track of such things have said that the average American eats more than 15 pounds of noodles per year!  I hope you are eating whole-grain noodles - whether egg noodles, pasta noodles, etc.  You will be surprised how much eating whole-grain noodles will improve your health, your weight, shrink your belly fat, etc.

Note: This picture is not meant to endorse this particular brand of noodles!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


Many nutritionists believe you can actually lower your disease risk by substituting beans for meat at least 2 meals a week.  "Studies have shown that people who eat more plant-based foods, which are lower in calories and richer in antioxidants than animal-based foods, have fewer incidents of chronic illness, including heart disease and diabetes," said Kate Geagan, RD.  Other pluses to making the switch would mean more beans, less meat = fewer calories which may cause you to lose weight.  For most people, losing weight will further cut your disease risk. So give it a try.  Instead of beef or even chicken in your burritos or chili substitute black, red, or pinto beans.  Even a minestrone soup with whole-grain bread is a good substitution. Surely you could do this a couple times a week for your health's sake!

Monday, April 8, 2013


According to nutritionist Joy Bauer, strawberries are one of Spring's healthiest bounty.  She states that these tasty berries are one of nature's most potent sources of vitamin-C.  One of the benefits of vitamin-C is that it helps the body produce collagen which is a structural protein that helps keep skin youthful, firm, and radiant. For those watching their weight or for diabetics who have to be careful of the natural sugar content in fruits, strawberries are some of the lowest calorie and lowest sugar fruit options.  Slice some of these healthy berries onto your oatmeal or cold cereal, enjoy them in a lettuce salad, slice them over angel food or pound cake, etc.  They also make a great addition to fruit trays and platters.  As the bounty of strawberries hit your grocers shelves, farmers markets, etc., take advantage of these fresh berries for a tasty, healthy treat.

Friday, April 5, 2013


Eating healthier is not hard or complicated.  There are so many easy simple ways to improve your diet and therefore your weight and your health.  Here is a really simple way to make an improvement in your snacking and that is key.  It is estimated that many of us get at least a quarter of our daily calories from our snacks.  And most of them are not healthy according to Registered Dietitian, Kate Geagan.  She recommends eating only one ingredient snacks such as fruits, nuts, etc.  Combinations of one ingredient snacks such as trail mix, etc count as one ingredient items.  The key is to stay away from processed foods.  The more ingredients in a product, the more processed it usually is.  Processed foods are usually higher in fat, sugar, salt, additives, etc.  You don't need to put that into your body with your snacking. A small change that can make a big difference!

Monday, April 1, 2013


I am always telling my readers, as you already know, to read the nutrition labels on the foods you buy.  I often have people tell me that it too much trouble or they are confused by the labels.  Maybe you will find this easier.  Read the ingredients list! 
  • Fact - Ingredients are required to be listed in order of the amount in the product.  For example if sugar is listed as the first ingredient, there is more sugar in that product than any of the other ingredients.
  • Fact - If you find sugar, trans fats, etc in the first few ingredients, you need to put that product back and look at another one.
  • Fact - You are capable of making good decisions in the grocery store.  Take charge of what you eat and improve your health.  You can do this even if nutrition labels confuse you!

Note: This picture is used to show nutrition labels and ingredients lists only.  This is not an endorsement or critism of this particular product.