HEALTHY SUMMER TEATS - JULY 2019 - VOLUME 11, ISSUE 4

Ramila's Health Tips
 

Volume 11, Issue 4

July 2019

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I hope you're enjoying the warm summer weather! To increase your enjoyment, I thought you might like to try a few healthy summer treats that take advantage of the fresh fruits available now. In keeping with my new Fasting Decoded program, I am focusing on foods that are consistent with a keto diet, i.e. they are low in carbs, can be high in fat and also moderate in protein. The goal is to become a more efficient fat burner (as opposed to carbohydrate burner). Read on below...

These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy DNM

Doctor of Natural Medicine

Ramila

Healthy Summer Treats

What makes a treat healthy?

It's probably easier to think in terms of what a healthy treat should not contain - added sugars definitely top the list. Of course, we all like to indulge once in a while, but we need to be mindful of the risks involved and not overdo it.

Avoid added sugars. Added sugars are associated with numerous health problems:

  • Sugar causes glucose levels to spike and plummet. Unstable blood sugar can result in mood swings, fatigue and headaches. It also contributes to cravings, whereas those who avoid sugar report having fewer cravings while feeling more emotionally balanced and energized.
  • Sugar is a leading cause of obesity in both children and adults. Obesity, in turn, increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, several types of cancer, and several other diseases and disabilities.
  • Sugar can cause insulin resistance, which is a first step toward metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
  • Added sugar, and especially HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) is, as the name tells you, high in fructose, and can overload your liver. The liver will convert it to fat.
  • Too much fructose can cause non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
  • Fructose raises your cholesterol and triglyceride levels
  • Sugar is bad for your teeth and can cause gum disease. I'm sure you're aware of the effect of sugar on your teeth and know the importance of brushing your teeth at least twice a day. More recently, there is increasing evidence that chronic gum infections play a role in the development of heart disease. Inflammation resulting from gum infections doesn't just stay in the mouth but enters the circulatory system.
  • Sugar accelerates aging. Sugar in your bloodstream attaches to proteins. The mix of these proteins with sugar causes the skin to lose elasticity and leads to premature wrinkles and sagging.
  • Your immune function can be adversely affected by sugar. Studies have shown that sugar can interfere with the way your body fights disease. Bacteria and yeast feed on sugar, so excess glucose in the body causes these organisms to build up and cause infections.

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends restricting added sugars to 5% of our daily calories. For the average person, this would be about 6-7 teaspoons of sugar per day. To put that in perspective, a can of Coke has 10 teaspoons of sugar. WHO concedes that 5% might be unreasonable for many people, but they emphasize that the dietary intake of sugar definitely should not exceed 10%.

Recipes for Healthy Summer Treats

Berry Cashew Cream No Bake Bars

Servings 16 bars

Ingredients:

For the crust:

  • 2/3 cup roasted cashews * 93g
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped dates loosely packed (70g)

For the layers:

  • 2 cups roasted cashews soaked in water overnight (250g)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/4 cup honey agave for vegan version
  • 1 tsp raw vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup strawberries roughly chopped (140g)
  • 1/2 cup blueberries 70g

Directions:

  1. Place the cashews (for the crust) into a large food processor and pulse until broken down and crumble. Add in the dates and pulse until combined and the mixture begins to form a crumbly dough.
  2. Press the crust firmly into the bottom of a parchment lined 8x8" pan. You need to press it very thin, so really use your muscle and work it in there. Place into the freezer while you make the cream.
  3. Drain the soaked cashews and place them, along with the almond milk, honey, vanilla and a pinch of salt, into a large, high-powered blender.
  4. Blend until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides as necessary. Transfer to a large liquid measuring cup. You should have 2 cups of cream.
  5. Place 1/2 cup of the cream into a SMALL food processor (3 cups is ideal) along with the strawberries. ** Blend until smooth and creamy.
  6. Scrape the cream over the crust and spread out evenly. Place into the refrigerator just until the top feels set, about 45 minutes to an hour.
  7. Spread 1 Cup of the cashew cream on top of the strawberry layer and place back into the freezer until the top feels set, another 45 minutes to an hour.
  8. Finally, place the remaining 1/2 cup of cashew cream into the small food processor with the blueberries *** and blend until smooth and creamy.
  9. Spread the final layer on top and freeze until completely firm and set, about 3 hours to overnight.
  10. Once frozen, remove from the pan, slice into squares and DEVOUR.

Recipe notes:

* You can buy cashews that are pre-roasted. If you can't find these, bake them in a 350F oven for 5-10 minutes until lightly golden brown. Do this for both the crust and the cream layers, and before you soak the cashews from the cream overnight.

**The author of this recipe tried to do this in a blender, but it was too small a batch to get creamy.

*** Do not make the fruit layers in advance as the pectin in the fruit causes the cashew to gel. Make them just as you are ready to spread them.

 

Nutella Strawberry Parfait with Coconut Whipped Cream

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of sliced strawberries
  • 4 tablespoons of Nutella, melted

Coconut whipped cream:

  • 13.5 oz can of full fat coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Optional garnish: chopped hazelnuts, shaved chocolate, fresh mint.

Directions:

  1. Place can of coconut milk in refrigerator overnight.
  2. The next day gently remove can from refrigerator so as not to mix the cream and milk.
  3. Place a medium glass bowl in refrigerator for 10-15 minutes prior to making whipped cream to chill.
  4. Gently scoop the cream portion out of the can and place in a chilled glass bowl.
  5. Add honey and vanilla extract to coconut milk. Using a hand mixer, beat the milk on high until it has soft peaks. About 2-3 minutes.
  6. Place back in refrigerator.
  7. To 4 medium serving bowls, add 1 cup of strawberries. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon of Nutella. Finish with a dollop of coconut whipped cream.
  8. Optional: garnish with chopped hazelnuts and shaved chocolate.

For super-simple summer desserts, you can serve fresh fruit, e.g. berries, and add a topping of whipped cream (coconut as described above, or made from half a pint of organic whipping cream - just whip the cream and add a dash of vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon of sugar).

Please see our newsletter of July 2016 for more delicious summer recipes.

I hope you enjoy these recipes and wish you a great rest of the summer.

Supplements

There are a number of supplements that would help you to maximize your health. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Aloe Vera Gel
  • HistaBlock
  • Tea Tree Oil
Berberine IR

References

  1. 10 reasons why sugar is bad for your health. atkins.com/how-it-works/library/articles/10-ways-sugar-harms-your-health Accessed July 3, 2019.
  2. Simple, healthy, delicious summer treats. Newsletter Volume 8, Issue 4, July 2016. ramilas.com/news/2016/7/28/simple-healthy-delicious-summer-treats-july-2016-volume-8-issue-4 Accessed July 3, 2019.
  3. Lower sugar intake to less than 5% of daily calories, WHO says. CBC News, March 5, 2014. cbc.ca/news/health/lower-sugar-intake-to-less-than-5-of-daily-calories-who-says-1.2560639 Accessed July 4, 2019.
  4. Berry cashew cream no bake bars. foodfaithfitness.com/berry-cashew-cream-no-bake-bars/#wprm-recipe-container-22165 Accessed July 4, 2019.
  5. Nutella strawberry parfait with coconut whipped cream. joyfulhealthyeats.com/nutella-strawberry-parfait-with-coconut-whipped-cream/ Accessed July 4, 2019.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

HEALTHY COMFORT FOODS - OCTOBER 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 7

 

Volume 10, Issue 7

October 2018

Healthy Comfort Foods

With the cooler weather, comfort foods look really attractive. Feeling stressed, sad or simply being tired can also make us want to turn to comfort foods. But are they healthy? A lot of our favourite comfort foods can be healthy with just a few subtle tweaks that won't reduce our enjoyment of them. Read on below...

These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

Healthy Comfort Food Suggestions

The comfort foods that we enjoy so much in cooler weather tend to be heavy, high in fat and/or refined carbs, and sometimes they involve processed food. But they can be modified without losing flavour or reducing our satisfaction with them.

First, most fats aren't bad for us as we've been led to believe, certainly if consumed in moderation. The only fat to avoid totally is trans fat. Some vegetable oils have drawbacks, e.g. canola oil and soybean oil may be genetically modified and contain glyphosate. Many vegetable oils also contain high levels of omega-6 fatty acids. We need some omega-6, it's an essential fatty acid, meaning that the body does not produce it, and needs to obtain it from food. However, omega-6 causes inflammation, so we need to limit the amount we consume in relation to omega-3 to not more than a ratio of 2:1. Extra virgin olive oil and avocado oil are excellent choices. While you can still find a lot of negative 'information' about butter, there is an increasing amount of research demonstrating that it is healthy, preferably from grass-fed, organic sources.

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Here are some healthy comfort food suggestions:


  • Grilled cheese tops the lists of many people. You can make it healthier by using organic whole grain bread, and you can even add roasted veggies.
  • Macaroni and cheese is another favourite. You can use organic whole wheat or brown rice macaroni. Also, avoid processed cheese in powder form and use real cheddar (as strong or mild as you like). Another suggestion is to add puréed butternut squash, pumpkin or cauliflower to your cheese sauce.
  • Pasta - for any pasta dish, you can use organic whole grain or brown rice pasta to create a healthier comfort meal. For lasagna, eggplant slices can also be used as a substitute for pasta.
  • Meatloaf can be made with ground turkey rather than beef (or a combination of the two) to decrease calories and fat. It can also include veggies so you use less meat, e.g. chopped mushrooms, celery and bell peppers. Substituting oatmeal for breadcrumbs increases the healthiness of meatloaf, as well.
  • Beef stew can be low-carb if you substitute turnips for potatoes - the texture is similar.
  • French fries can be baked with seasoning. For an even healthier snack, you can bake sweet potato fries.
  • Fried chicken can be baked to give you the same crunchy on the outside, juicy on the inside combination without the use of a deep fryer.
  • Mashed potatoes can be creamy if you use olive oil and broth rather than cream and butter. You can add cauliflower to further reduce calories and increase healthiness.
  • Homemade chicken soup actually is healthy and gives you the option of avoiding the excessive salt of store-bought versions. You can increase its healthiness by adding garlic to help prevent colds, as well as adding other healthy vegetables, such as sweet potatoes instead of noodles. 
  • Chocolate is healthy; it contains antioxidants. Stick to dark chocolate that's at least 70% cocoa for maximum benefits - milk chocolate is sweeter and contains much less cocoa.
  • Brownies can be healthy. You can find recipes on the web for various healthy versions of brownies, e.g. flour-free, low or no sugar, zucchini brownies - there is no end of variations that claim to be just as chocolaty and delicious as any less healthy version.
  • Are you craving ice cream? Coconut milk ice cream or almond milk ice cream are healthy substitutes.

As you can see, we're trying to avoid or reduce sugars and other refined carbohydrates, and in some cases, reduce the calories from fat, so you can apply these general principles to any other comfort food that appeals to you.

If all else fails and nothing but the 'real' comfort food will do, don't feel guilty for an occasional lapse. Tomorrow is another day!

 

References


  1. Link R. 11 best healthy fats for your body. draxe.com/healthy-fats/ July 25, 2018. Accessed September 26, 2018.
  2. Steinhilber B. Why we crave comfort foods - and how to make them healthier. nbcnews.com/better/health/why-we-crave-comfort-foods-how-make-them-healthier-ncna840016 January 24, 2018. Accessed September 25, 2018.
  3. Fischer K. 10 tips for healthy comfort foods. eatthis.com/healthy-comfort-foods/ September 16, 2016. Accessed September 16, 2018.
  4. Healthy comfort food recipes. eatingwell.com/recipes/19699/cooking-methods-styles/comfort/ Accessed September 16, 2018. 
  5. Glassman K. 5 comfort foods that are actually really good for you. today.com/health/5-comfort-foods-are-actually-really-good-you-t119907 December 11, 2017. Accessed September 25, 2018.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would help you to maximize your health now that summer is over. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Colostrum
  • Super Vitamins & Minerals
  • Vitamin D3
  • Zambroza
Milk Thistle

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Ramila created a nutritional plan for me. She also taught me how to balance out my nutritional needs and what kinds of food eat and to avoid. I started seeing major differences in my body and overall health in just 3 weeks. I had more energy, my headaches were fewer to none, and my feet and joints didn’t hurt as much. I stuck to the health plan and went from a size 15 to now a size 9. I have lost 40 lbs. -RG

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES TO SOFT DRINKS - AUGUST 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 5

 

Volume 10, Issue 5

August 2018

Healthy Alternatives to Soft Drinks

I hope you're enjoying a safe, healthy summer! One thing we tend to do more of in summer that isn't so healthy is drink soft drinks. Numerous studies have shown the negative health effects of drinking soft drinks on your waistline and your teeth. However, there are far more health risks than many of us may realize.

Of course, it's very important to stay well-hydrated, especially in the hot weather, and there are healthy cold and hot drinks we'll also discuss. Read on below...

These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

The many reasons drinking soft drinks is bad for your health

  • Soft drinks contain high amounts of sugar. A 20 ounce can of (regular) Coca-Cola has the equivalent of 17 teaspoons of sugar and 240 calories - empty calories with no nutritional value. It would take the average adult over one hour of walking to burn off the 240 calories.
  • The high levels of sugar in soft drinks place a lot of stress on your pancreas, potentially leaving it unable to keep up with the body's need for insulin. Drinking one or two sugary drinks per day increases your risk of type 2 diabetes by 25%.
  • Similarly, drinking one or more soft drinks per day may increase your risk of developing metabolic syndrome and heart disease. In the Framingham study of over 9,000 participants, those who consumed one or more soft drinks per day over a four year period had a 48% increased risk of metabolic syndrome compared to those consuming less than one soft drink daily.
  • Drinking soft drinks changes your metabolism. In one study, participants drank 140 grams of sugar every day for four weeks (less than two 20 ounce cans of Coke). Their metabolism changed during that time making it more difficult for them to burn fat and lose weight.
  • Daily soft drinks and other sugar sweetened drinks are linked to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). In one study, 2,634 individuals completed a CT scan to measure the amount of fat in their liver. There was a higher prevalence of NAFLD among people who reported drinking more than one sugar-sweetened drink per day compared to people who said they drank no sugar-sweetened beverages.
  • Soft drinks increase the risk of obesity in children. Each additional soft drink or other sugary drink consumed per day increases the likelihood of a child becoming obese.
  • Diet soft drinks contain artificial sweeteners. Opting for diet soft drinks may lower your calorie intake, but artificial sweeteners are linked to many illnesses including cancer.
  • Diet soft drinks do not help you lose weight. A University of Texas Health Science Center study found that the more diet soft drinks a person drank, the greater their risk of becoming overweight.
  • Diet soft drinks are linked with an increased risk of stroke, heart attack and dementia, as well as metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
  • The many soft drinks that contain caffeine dehydrate - they are diuretics. When the body's cells are dehydrated, they have difficulty absorbing nutrients, and it is also more difficult for the body to eliminate waste.
  • The caramel colouring in colas is linked to cancer. The brown colouring is made by reacting sugars with ammonia and sulphites under high pressure and temperatures, not from caramelized sugar. These chemical reactions result in the formation of 2-methylimidazole (2-MI) and 4-methylimidazole (4-MI), which, in government-conducted studies, caused lung, liver and thyroid cancer and leukemia in laboratory mice and rats.
  • Soft drink cans are lined with BPA (bis-phenol A), which has been linked to a wide range of health problems from heart disease to obesity to reproductive problems.
  • The acid in soft drinks wears away dental enamel. Drinking soft drinks regularly causes plaque to build up on the teeth and can lead to cavities and gum disease.
  • Soft drinks deplete your mineral levels. Soft drinks that contain phosphoric acid remove much-needed calcium from your bones. A study of several thousand men and women at Tufts University found that women who drank three or more cola-based soft drinks per day had almost 4% lower bone mineral density in their hips; the researchers controlled for their calcium and vitamin D intake.
  • Soft drinks have been linked to asthma. A study done in South Australia of almost 17,000 participants aged 16 years and older, showed high levels of soda consumption were positively associated with asthma and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).
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Healthy alternatives to soft drinks

  1. Water. Many people live in a state of chronic, low-level dehydration that can affect every part of their health including cognitive performance and mental health. If you're a soft drink addict and find it difficult to switch to water, try sparkling water. If you prefer drinking flavoured beverages, try infusing drinking water with a slice of lemon, lime, orange or other fresh fruit, or combinations of fresh fruit. To infuse water, you can try an infusion bottle, or simply make up a pitcher of water plus your choice of fruit (thinly sliced) and chill it in the refrigerator for four hours or overnight for a refreshing treat.
  2. Green tea is one of the best beverages for cancer prevention, and also improves artery function, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Note that adding milk (either cow's milk or soy milk) has been found to dramatically reduce the availability of the antioxidants in tea. Adding lemon, on the other hand, increases levels of antioxidants.
  3. Hibiscus tea was found to be the highest in antioxidants, in a study of 283 beverages. Hibiscus tea can be quite tart. Watermelon and lime can be added to create an interesting flavour combination.
  4. Water with apple cider vinegar has been used as a folk remedy for many ailments. There are many health benefits of consuming vinegar with a meal, including a reduction in the spike in blood sugar, insulin and triglycerides. It also increases the feeling of being full after a meal. Vinegar has also been found to reduce body weight and body fat mass in a recent Japanese study.
  5. White tea is the least processed (followed by green, then oolong, then black). White tea has a light, delicate flavour. Plain white tea doesn't have as high a level of antioxidants as green tea, but when combined with lemon, the level of antioxidants increased to a much higher level than green tea with lemon.

I hope you enjoy these healthy alternatives to soft drinks as well as Nature's Sunshine products recommended below

 

References


  1. McFarland E. 21 ways drinking soda is bad for your health. Food and Health July 25, 2016, foodrevolution.org/blog/category/blog/food-and-health/ Accessed July 4, 2018.
  2. Ten reasons to avoid soda (& how to kick the habit). Updated April 19, 2018, wellnessmama.com/379/avoid-soda/ Accessed July 17, 2018.
  3. Calderone J. The mounting evidence against diet sodas. May 24, 2017, consumerreports.org/soda/mounting-evidence-against-diet-sodas/ Accessed July 17, 2018.
  4. Mercola J. Give up soda. January 10, 2018, articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/01/10/drinking-soda-health-risks.aspx Accessed July 17, 2018.
  5. The 5 healthiest beverages you should be drinking now. foodrevolution.org/blog/healthiest-beverages/ Accessed July 4, 2018.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

Supplements

There are some Nature's Sunshine supplements that would give you healthy substitutes for soft drinks. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • Chlorophyll, Liquid (mix with water)
  • Solstic Energy (one per day is a healthy alternative to popular energy drinks)
  • Solstic Nutrition (a delicious multi-vitamin/mineral supplement drink mix; take one per day)
Milk Thistle

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Ramila created a nutritional plan for me. She also taught me how to balance out my nutritional needs and what kinds of foods eat and to avoid. I started seeing major differences in my body and overall health in just 3 weeks. I had more energy, my headaches were fewer to none, and my feet and joints didn’t hurt as much. I stuck to the health plan and went from a size 15 to now a size 9. I have lost 40 lbs.

-RG

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

Facebook info@ramilas.comWebsite

THE 2018 DIRTY DOZEN AND CLEAN FIFTEEN - JULY 2018 - VOLUME 10, ISSUE 4

 

Volume 10, Issue 4

July 2018

The 2018 Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen

This is a wonderful time of year for enjoying fresh vegetables and fruits! Many people are not aware that pesticide residues are common on conventionally grown produce, even after it is carefully washed or peeled. I really don't want to spoil your enjoyment, but I thought it would be helpful to let you know about the fruits and vegetables on this year's 'Dirty Dozen' list which is produced by the U.S. Environmental Working Group. On a more positive note, the 'Clean Fifteen' list shows produce with the least exposure to pesticides.

I'm not suggesting that you necessarily stop eating produce on the Dirty Dozen list, but you definitely want to consider buying organic versions of these fruits and vegetables or buying them from farms whose practices regarding pesticide use you are familiar with. You might also wish to eat more of the Clean Fifteen.

While I realize the situation in Canada may not be identical to the U.S., usually we're quite similar, so I think we can use this information to guide us in our choices. Read on below...

These newsletters will help you make better choices for better health. The choices that you make today can either have a positive or negative impact on your overall health. Begin by choosing better as it is a step towards longevity.

Ramila Padiachy

Doctor of Natural Medicine (DNM)®

Ramila
 

The 2018 Dirty Dozen

The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit and nonpartisan group, has been ranking fresh produce based on their levels of pesticide contamination (number of pesticides and amount of each pesticide) since 2004. They produce the Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™, which is intended to be a resource for consumers who are unable to buy organic produce. The EWG does its own independent analysis of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's pesticide testing.

The 2018 Dirty Dozen (in descending order of levels of pesticides):

  1. Strawberries
  2. Spinach
  3. Nectarines
  4. Apples
  5. Grapes
  6. Peaches
  7. Cherries
  8. Pears
  9. Tomatoes
  10. Celery
  11. Potatoes
  12. Sweet bell peppers
  13. Hot peppers

Made that a baker's dozen - this year's list includes a 13th item, hot peppers. The EWG found that hot peppers tend to be contaminated with dangerous insecticides, so they suggest buying organic hot peppers, or at least cook conventionally grown hot peppers to help reduce insecticide levels.

The EWG says that rinsing produce under running tap water is a good way to reduce pesticide levels before consumption; however, research at the University of Massachusetts shows that soaking produce in a baking soda and water solution may do an even better job.

Key findings of the 2018 Dirty Dozen report:

  • The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) tests found 230 different pesticides and pesticide breakdown products on thousands of produce samples analyzed.
  • The EWG analyzed USDA pesticide residue data and found that almost 70% of non-organic produce sampled tested positive for pesticide contamination.
  • More than 98% of samples of strawberries, spinach, peaches, nectarines, cherries and apples tested positive for residue of at least one pesticide.
  • Spinach samples had, on average, 1.8 times as much pesticide residue by weight than any other crop.

How risky is eating produce with higher levels of pesticides?

There is no easy answer to this question. There have been studies linking poorer pregnancy outcomes, as well as infertility in both men and women to pesticide exposure. There is also evidence that children with higher exposure to specific types of pesticides are at higher risk of being diagnosed with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).  

It's important to note that 'organic' does not mean that no pesticides were used, but that the pesticides used were derived from natural substances, not synthetic ones. While natural substances sound healthier, it depends on how much of a substance you're ingesting. As the saying goes, "The poison isn't in the substance, but in the dose."

Several experts claim that the real risk is in not eating enough produce, rather than pesticide exposure. The Environmental Working Group agrees, saying, "The health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure. Eating conventionally grown produce is far better than skipping fruits and vegetables."

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The 2018 Clean Fifteen

  1. Avocados
  2. Sweet corn*
  3. Pineapples
  4. Cabbage
  5. Onions
  6. Frozen sweet peas
  7. Papayas*
  8. Asparagus
  9. Mangoes
  10. Eggplant
  11. Honeydew melon
  12. Kiwi
  13. Cantaloupe
  14. Cauliflower
  15. Broccoli

The Clean Fifteen list includes produce that is least likely to be contaminated by pesticides.

  • Less than 1% of avocado and sweet corn samples tested positive for any detectable pesticides; they were the cleanest of all produce tested.
  • More than 80% of pineapples, papayas asparagus, onions and cabbages had no pesticide residues.
  • None of the produce on the Clean Fifteen list tested positive for more than four pesticides.

*Note: Papayas and sweet corn in the U.S. (and sweet corn grown in Canada) is GMO unless organic, so it's best to choose organic for those.

A diet rich in produce is most important

I agree that it's most important to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables for optimum health and that exposure to pesticides, for most people, is a secondary concern. If you have access to organic produce, so much the better, but many nutritionists and other experts agree that eating enough produce is extremely important.

 

References

  1. 2018 dirty dozen and clean fifteen lists rank produce items by pesticide level. Food Safety Magazine, April 10, 2018, foodsafetymagazine.com/news/2018-dirty-dozen-and-clean-fifteen-lists-rank-produce-items-by-pesticide-level/ Accessed May 31, 2018.
  2. Lunder S. EWG's shopper's guide to pesticides in produce™. April 10, 2018,  ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php Accessed May 31, 2018. 
  3. Axe J. Dirty dozen list: are you eating the most pesticide-laden produce? draxe.com/dirty-dozen/ Accessed May 31, 2018.
  4. Cassetty S. What a nutritionist wants you to know about pesticides and produce. April 14, 2018, nbcnews.com/better/health/produce-side-pesticides-what-nutritionist-wants-you-know-about-ewg-ncna864156 Accessed July 3, 2018.

Disclaimer: The suggestions and recommendations in this newsletter are not intended to be prescriptive or diagnostic. The information is accurate and up to date to our knowledge, but we are not responsible for any errors in our sources of information.

Supplements

There are Nature's Sunshine supplements relevant to this newsletter. You can find information about these products and purchase them in our online store:

  • CurcuminBP
  • Dandelion
  • Milk Thistle
  • LIV-A
  • LIV-C
  • BP
  • K
  • Potas
  • Parsley
  • Ginger
Milk Thistle

For additional information, please email info@ramilas.com or call Ramilas Healing Arts Clinic at 613.829.0427 for an appointment. Please continue letting friends and family know about this newsletter. Also, on our website, please see back issues of this newsletter, information about services, products and our clinic, and order products.

Our family is so grateful for curing us from many environmental and food sensitivities we were living with since birth. It is our new-found freedom not to have food restrictions, especially at social gatherings. We also appreciate Ramilas determination to finding relief to my son's ongoing eczema breakouts. It made a huge difference to this 15 year old boy's self-esteem.

-Lise & Family Ottawa

The Belly of the Beast

AVAILABLE NOW

thebellyofthebeast.ca

1437 Woodroffe Avenue

Ottawa ON (map)

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