In this Issue:
Does Eating Calcium
Really Build Strong Bones?
Worldwide statistics reveal startling data.
ADHD? It’s the Food, Stupid
New study connects diet and behavioral problems in children.
Does Factory Farming
Really Outproduce Organic Farming?
agriculture is touted as the solution to world hunger...
is it really more efficient than organic?
Does Eating Calcium
Really Build Strong Bones?
We've all heard it for years -- to build strong bones, you need to eat more calcium-rich foods. However, when you look at worldwide statistics for osteoporosis, you'll find that countries with the highest calcium consumption (U.S., Canada and Scandinavia) also have the highest rates of osteoporosis, and countries that consume very little calcium have almost no cases of osteoporosis! What gives?
People from many different cultures, all over the planet, have been living lives free of osteoporosis for millennia. Many of them never touched dairy food, calcium supplements, or hormone therapy. Today, most of the world's population consume less than 500 mg of calcium daily (the RDA is roughly twice this amount), and there is no convincing evidence that countries with lower dietary intakes are more prone to osteoporosis.
Maybe calcium intake is not all there is to keeping your bones strong.
According to David Wolfe, raw food guru and nutritionist, "Calcium does not build bones, and that is one of the biggest misconceptions ever, and it actually goes to the real core of our problems with science. That is, the human body is a complex biological machine and an unbelievable mystery. There is strong evidence that if you eat calcium… it is almost impossible to get that into your bones to increase bone density."
David has extensively studied and written about calcium physiology. He explains that, in addition to dietary calcium, many calcium supplements are not well handled by your body. They can't be broken down, and form miniature "rocks" that get deposited in your soft tissues. According to Wolfe (and others), these silty calcium deposits are major contributors to many disease conditions, including atherosclerosis, alzheimer's, gallstones and kidney stones, arthritis and others.
Vitamins D and K are other nutrients that are equally important for healthy bones. Vitamin D improves bone health by helping you absorb calcium, and vitamin K directs the calcium to your bones, while preventing it from being deposited in places you don't want it, such as your organs, joints, and arteries.
In other words, without sufficient vitamin K, the calcium that your vitamin D lets in might be working against you, by building up in places other than in your bones. Where do you get vitamin K? Dark green, leafy vegetables are the best sources: parsley, basil, collards, kale, turnip greens and spinach, as well as broccoli and asparagus.
The best way to
achieve healthy bones is a
diet rich in fresh, raw whole foods
that maximizes natural minerals.
Your bones are actually composed of at least a dozen minerals. If you just focus on calcium, you will likely weaken your bones and increase your risk of osteoporosis, as Dr. Robert Thompson explains in his book, The Calcium Lie, available at my Amazon Book Store.
Other ways to ensure healthier, stronger bones are:
- Getting more vitamin D, either from natural sunlight exposure or an oral supplement.
- Optimizing your vitamin K intake through dietary sources like dark leafy green vegetables such as kale.
- Do weight-bearing exercises, which stimulate new bone growth.
- Consume a wide variety of fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, organic meats and eggs. The more of your diet you consume RAW, the better. Minimize sugar and refined grains.
- Take a high-quality animal-based omega-3 supplement.
If you don't eat a good variety of vegetables every day, especially dark green leafy vegetables, you may not be getting sufficient amounts of vitamins K. In this case, you may want to consider using vitamin K supplements.
When it comes to vitamin D, well, this is the time of the year when your vitamin D levels are at their lowest (at least in the northern hemisphere). For at least 6 months out of the year, from about October to April, your body can't manufacture any vitamin D due to a lack of strong sunlight. Now is the time to ensure that your vitamin D levels are optimal by using vitamin D supplements. Deficiencies of vitamin D are related to almost any disease condition you can think of.
There's much more information on vitamin D on my website; a good place to start is my page on Vitamin D Facts.
Source for this article: Mercola.com
For further reading:
See this previous article in my newsletter about how a low-acid diet can help prevent osteoporosis, from Health & Longevity News Issue No. 16.
Slate.com: Got Osteoporosis?
Why Milk Won't Prevent Osteoporosis
ADHD? It’s the Food, Stupid!
Over 5 million children ages four to 17 have been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in the United States, and close to 3 million of those children take medication for their symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control. But a new study reported in The Lancet last month found that with a restricted diet alone, many children experienced a significant reduction in symptoms. The study's lead author, Dr. Lidy Pelsser of the ADHD Research Center in the Netherlands, said in an interview with NPR, "The teachers thought it was so strange that the diet would change the behavior of the child as thoroughly as they saw it. It was a miracle, the teachers said."
Dr. Pessler's study is the first to conclusively say that diet is implicated in ADHD. In the NPR interview, Dr. Pessler did not mince words, "Food is the main cause of ADHD," she said adding, "After the diet, they were just normal children with normal behavior. They were no longer more easily distracted, they were no more forgetful, there were no more temper-tantrums."
The study found
that in 64 percent of children with ADHD,
the symptoms were caused by food.
Source for this article: Grist: ADHD: It’s the Food, Stupid
Does Factory Farming
Really Outproduce Organic Farming?
The primary argument made for chemical-based factory-farming technology is that it's the only way we're going to provide enough food for a growing world population. Proponents of conventional agriculture insist that organic farming methods just can't produce enough food per acre to be practical on a large scale.
Pennsylvania-based Rodale Institute's Farming Systems Trial (FST) has been comparing crop yields from both organic and chemical-based farming systems, and taking soil samples on test plots for 27 years. Their latest findings? The two systems have produced equivalent corn yields over that time, while, on organic plots, "soybean yields were the same or… only slightly lower." In addition, in 4 out of 5 years of moderate drought, the organic systems had significantly higher corn yields (31 percent higher) than the conventional system.
Corn and soybean crops in the organic systems also tolerated much higher levels of weed competition than their conventional counterparts, while producing equivalent yields.
So whenever you hear a spokesperson for the Dept. of Agriculture or corporations like Monsanto insist that GM technology is the only way we can feed a growing world population, understand that their primary incentive to promote GM agriculture is profit. And problems that are occurring with GM technology are being ignored for that very reason.
Here's an article by Jeffrey Smith, a leading authority on GM agriculture, that reveals just some of the devastating and unprecedented impact that Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide is having on the health of our soil, plants, animals, and human population: Monsanto's Roundup Triggers over 40 Plant Diseases
To learn more about genetically-modified agriculture, read my article, Are Genetically Modified Foods Safe?
Source for this article: Grist: Organic Matters
Worthwhile Causes to Support
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) works to protect the public from harm due to toxic contaminants. Their website has lots of great information that will help you identify the threats from toxins and make it easy for you to voice your opinion on environmental issues to your congressman and other policy-makers.
The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is a grassroots, non-profit public interest organization that promotes and supports organic agriculture and addresses issues related to it, including food safety, food politics and GM technology.
The OCA is actively working to stop Monsanto from spreading GM agriculture around the world and gaining control of the world food supply. You can sign up here to support their campaign, Millions Against Monsanto.
The Institute for Responsible Technology is a world leader in educating policy makers and the public about genetically modified (GM) foods and crops. Founded in 2003 by international bestselling author and GMO expert Jeffrey Smith, the IRT works to mobilize citizens, organizations, healthcare professionals and the media to discover the truth about GM foods.
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Have a great month!