Heart Disease

Where should we get our Iron from?

If something is in excess that doesn’t mean it is good for us! Lets talk about iron absorption with red meat compared to plant foods. Funny how people think just because something is more absorbable it should therefore be better for us. Heme iron and non-heme iron. There is a big difference. Heme iron is obviously from dead flesh (blood) and non heme from plant foods!

Because the human body has no mechanism to rid itself of excess iron we have evolved to regulate this. Iron is absorbed through our intestines and if iron stores get too low the intestines know when to boost the absorption, if iron stores are too high then the intestines block the absorption to maintain us in the sweet spot! This also only works with the primary source of iron in the human diet from plant foods (non-heme).

Heme iron from dead flesh however cannot be regulated by the body and therefore absorbs straight through the intestinal wall even if there is excess iron in the body. This is when the body gets into an iron overload and creates all sorts of problems and sets the body up with a higher risk of dis-ease.

So the body has no control over iron absorption when eating animal flesh. This is why Vegetarians and Vegans tend to be lower in iron when it comes to blood tests because the 'normal' range is elevated due to all those people eating flesh which in turn boosts there level of iron in the body without knowing it is much more harmful for them.

In terms of how much the body can absorb we believe that it is very hard to get an exact number from the foods we eat because you can't really say that this plant food has this much iron in it so my body will absorb all of it. Iron absorption also depends on how many other nutrients that plant food has because all of the nutrients from that plant food work together to get absorbed. If you eat a variety of WHOLE foods (Fruits, Vegetables, Whole Grains and Legumes) you will get the exact amount of iron the body needs so that you can be in that sweet spot :)

High Carb Health in India

From Shukul:

For the month of February I had been invited to India by Dr Nandita Shah, founder of SHARAN (Sanctuary for Health and Reconnection to Animals and Nature) India to give some talks and workshops on why Plant Based Nutrition is the best solution for peoples health. SHARAN is a wonderful Not for Profit Organisation in India whose vision is a diabetes free India.

My program consisted of giving talks in Mumbai and Pune, talking about disease prevention and reversal via a whole foods plant based lifestyle rather than relying on medications, and my area of expertise, digestive health.  I also conducted a cooking class with the help of one of the SHARAN associates, Reyna Rupani and showed people how to make healthy and delicious food without the use of oil, sugar or any refined products.

I was able to explain to people how to prevent and even reverse our most common chronic diseases such as Heart Disease, Diabetes and even common cancers such as of the breast, prostate and colon. In my digestive health workshop we discussed how to reverse chronic digestive disorders such as Crohns, Ulcerative Colitis, IBS and IBD. The audience was always amazed at the power of correct nutrition and that they now had the ability to prevent and reverse these common conditions! Health is really in your hands.

India has an extremely large vegetarian community. So the majority of people I spoke with did not eat meat! Therefore the main focus was on the harmful effects that cow’s milk has on the human body. We also showed the audience a video on how cows are treated in India. It is truly horrible what goes on in the industry over here. One of the many actions that shocked me was that they put chilli powder in the cow’s eyes, if the cow will not follow directions. Quite a number of people were crying as they realised the harm that occurs to these beautiful creatures. In India, the cow is considered sacred, yet India is the largest exporter of beef in the world!

The programs were a hit! I was able to speak to over 300 people during the 7 events that I ran over 2 weeks. A lot of the people were amazed that the truth about the harm caused by animal products to their health was not commonly known, and many people told me that they felt they had been lied to their whole life. During the cooking class, we made eight dishes including Thai Massuman Curry, Raw Cookies, Mexican Bean Salad and a Raw Cheesecake without any oil and completely from whole plant foods.  Everyone was so pleased when they found out that healthy food is also delicious!

What I have seen is that awareness of Plant Based Nutrition is truly on the rise everywhere. The truth cannot be hidden forever! There are exceptional people everywhere spreading the message of love and compassion is so many ways, whether it be from the angle of animal rights, health or the environment and in many cases all 3 at once! When people hear a message presented in a logical and informative way, their perception changes and we get a shift in consciousness.

So many people told me after the events that they were going to make changes to their lifestyle and this gives me hope for the future. The animals need us, the planet needs us and we need to look after our health. Plant Based Nutrition offers us a viable solution to all 3 of these issues. We just need to reach more people in a manner that connects with them so that we can impact more positive change.

I feel more inspired than ever after my trip to India. I would like to thank Dr Nandita Shah and the whole team at SHARAN India for giving me the opportunity to share this information with so many people. I definitely recommend you have a look at their website www.sharan-india.org for lots of great information on Veganism and health, as well as some incredible Indian recipes!

I am very much looking forward to using the information I learned from SHARAN to deliver some similar programs here in New Zealand. Keep an eye out for them on our Facebook page High Carb Health and see you next time for the next edition of High Carb Health Talk.

High Carb Health are Natural Health and Holistic Nutrition Practitioners. Our aim is to give people realistic advice on how to get healthy and reverse illness via a scientifically proven, nutrition based approach to healing the body. Our goal is to provide long term, lasting solutions. We do not believe in quick fixes and our approach is far more effective in promoting health and preventing disease than prescription drugs, surgery, vitamin and herbal supplementation, and genetic manipulation. 

We provide education and coaching to help our clients transition to a healthier lifestyle, which also has the added benefit of assisting the body to reach its ideal weight. Fill in our Health Survey for a free 30 minute consultation - http://www.highcarbhealth.com/healthsurvey/

Are Eggs Healthy or Safe to Eat?

Eggs have traditionally been seen as an essential part of the human diet. Many health magazines and publications tout the benefits of eating eggs. In this edition of High Carb Health Talk, I delve into the scientific research completed on the consumption of eggs and provide you with a perspective on eggs and allow you to consider whether or not they aid our health. 

Regarding cholesterol, diabetes and the way eggs are marketed, what does the science tell us?

Eggs and Cholesterol

 

Eggs are loaded with high levels of cholesterol. In fact, eating one egg will put you over the recommended daily intake for cholesterol. 

Dietary cholesterol is not required as the human body is able to produce sufficient amounts through the body's own metabolic processes. In fact, the Harvard Nurses’ Health Study found that the daily consumption of the amount of cholesterol found in a single egg appeared to reduce life expectancy in the same way as smoking 25,000 cigarettes. You can see a similar exponential increase in arterial plaque build-up for smokers and egg-eaters. This tells us that contrary to common belief, eggs are definitely not a heart-healthy food; the evidence indicates the opposite is true.

Eggs and Diabetes

In the Spring Edition of Vegan New Zealand magazine, I wrote about diabetes and how excess fat is the real cause. Since eggs have a high caloric percentage of fat (1 egg contains about 5 g of fat), do they affect diabetes risk? The answer is yes; researchers have found a stepwise increase in risk based on how many eggs people eat. Eating just a single egg a week appeared to double the risk, and one egg a day tripled it! Remember Type 2 diabetes is one of the leading causes of death and amputations, blindness and kidney failure. What happens if we eat eggs when we already have diabetes? Studies show eating one egg a day or more appears to shorten one’s lifespan and may double the risk of death for diabetics.

Egg Marketing

Eggs have long been marketed as healthy and full of necessary nutrients and protein. Dr. Michael Greger has a series of videos about eggs (nutritionfacts.org), and as a result of the Freedom of Information Act in the USA, we recently got to see what egg companies there are restricted from saying when using taxpayer dollars to market eggs. (Individual egg companies are allowed to say whatever they want if they are using their own funds.)

Forbidden phrases

Because of existing laws against false and misleading advertising, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) did not allow egg industry professionals to describe eggs or egg products as:

  • healthy, healthful or nutritious - because eggs have high amounts of cholesterol (186 mg in a large egg), as well as high amounts of saturated fat, and therefore can contribute to the leading killer in the United States, heart disease
  • aiding in weight loss – they can’t be portrayed as a diet food because of the fat and cholesterol content, and they have nearly twice the calories allowed for the USDA low-calorie guidelines
  • "nutritional powerhouse", “egg-ceptional nutrition”, “pack a nutritional wallop”, “have high nutritional content”, “contribute nutritionally” or containing “healthful components”– see “healthy or nutritious” above

The message is clear. Even phrases like "Eggs are an important part of a well-balanced, healthy diet" would be considered misleading due to eggs’ fat and cholesterol.

They can't even refer to eggs as safe. "All references to safety must be removed," because more than a hundred thousand Americans are poisoned with salmonella every year from eggs.

What’s left?

After those mighty efforts, advertising was finally approved for:

  • "find true satisfaction" 
  • "can reduce hunger"
  • “fresh”
  • “affordable”

As we have seen, the reported health benefits of eggs that we may see are not justified. There is no valid reason to eat them. Eggs are definitely not nutritious, healthy or safe to eat. They increase our risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes, and for these reasons, should never find their way onto our plate.

High Carb Health are Natural Health and Holistic Nutrition Practitioners. Our aim is to give people realistic advice on how to get healthy and reverse illness via a scientifically proven, nutrition based approach to healing the body. Our goal is to provide long term, lasting solutions. We do not believe in quick fixes and our approach is far more effective in promoting health and preventing disease than prescription drugs, surgery, vitamin and herbal supplementation, and genetic manipulation. 

We provide education and coaching to help our clients transition to a healthier lifestyle, which also has the added benefit of assisting the body to reach its ideal weight. Fill in our Health Survey for a free 30 minute consultation - http://www.highcarbhealth.com/healthsurvey/

 

How to Prevent High Blood Pressure with Diet

From Nutritionfacts.org:

The most comprehensive and systematic analysis of causes of death ever undertaken allows us to answer questions like how many lives could we save if people cut back on soda? The answer? 299,000. Soda isn’t just bad because it’s empty calories, so it’s not a health-promoting food. It appears to be an actively death promoting food. Of course not as deadly as bacon, bologna, ham, or hot dogs. 800,000 deaths every year, killing twice as many women than domestic violence; five times more people than all illegal drugs combined.

But eating more whole grains could save 1.7 million lives, more vegetables, 1.8 million lives. If only we ate more nuts and seeds, 2 and a half million lives saved, but fruit is apparently what the world needs most (they didn’t look at beans). 4.9 million lives hang in the balance every year, and the cure is not drugs or vaccines; the cure is fruit.

One reason why plant-based diets can save so many millions, is because the #1 killer risk factor in the world is high blood pressure, laying to waste 9 million people year after year.

In the United States, high blood pressure affects nearly 78 million—that’s one in three of us and as we age our pressures get higher and higher, such that by age 60, it strikes more than half. If it affects most of us when we get older, maybe it’s less a disease and more just a natural, inevitable consequence of getting older? No. We’ve known for nearly a century that high blood pressure need never occur. Researchers measured the blood pressure of a thousand people in rural Kenya who ate a diet centered around whole plant foods. Whole grains, beans, vegetables, fruit, and dark green leafies. Up until age 40, the blood pressures of rural Africans were about the same as Europeans and Americans, down around 120s over 80s, but as Westerners age, their pressures creep up such that by age 60 the average person is hypertensive, exceeding 140 over 90. But what about those not following the Western diet? Their pressures improved with age, not only did they not develop hypertension, their blood pressures actually got better.

This whole 140 over 90 cut-off is arbitrary. Just like studies show that the lower the cholesterol the better, there’s really no safe level above about 150. Blood pressure studies also support a “lower the better” approach to blood pressure reduction. Even people who start out with blood pressure under 120 over 80 appear to benefit from blood pressure reduction, but is it possible to get blood pressures under 110 over 70? It’s not just possible, it’s normal, for those eating healthy enough diets.

Over two years at a rural Kenyan hospital, 1800 patients were admitted. How many cases of high blood pressure did they find? Zero. Wow, so they must have had low rates of heart disease. No, they had no rates of heart disease. Not low risk, no risk. Not a single case of arteriosclerosis—our #1 killer—was found.