I’ve started to write books on how to support, maintain and improve health and fitness, from a non-medical person’s point of view, several times in my lifelong health quest.
Each time, I came across another aspect of health that was uncharted territory for me.
One book I wanted to write I titled “The Synthesis Diet.” Drawing on some of the wisdom of Ayurveda, proper food combining, promoting physical activity and meditation, I thought I had a good framework. And then I started learning about hormones.. I felt like I had to start over, always marveling I had gone through 3 decades of life, mostly unaware of the power of the hormonal cascade..
Now I realize that managing and diffusing inflammation are critical – we are barraged on many levels with inflammatory elements. We can’t control everything but we have many choices when it comes to taking care of ourselves and our loved ones.
I’ve learned in my lifelong health quest to support, maintain and improve my health and have less stress I need to:
Eat the best of what is available without getting all stressed out and ruining everyone else’s meal. Is it obvious I’ve been there? The worst thing I ever did was make my entire (visiting) family get up and leave an Italian chain restaurant because they had marshmallows in their salad bar, or maybe it was when I was crying in a fast food hamburger joint because I was starving and they had not one thing I found acceptable to eat, but that was many years ago.. Now I consider myself to be an opportunitarian – I eat the best of what is available to me at that moment.
Eat in accordance with physical output and weight normalization needs
Seek foods with benefits in good combinations (respect digestion capacity and reasonableness)
Organic whenever possible
Avoid processed foods and preservatives
Limit sugar and sweeteners
Dairy – the devil for me! I avoid dairy products except organic butter
Enjoy favorite, less-than-stellar food choices on special occasions without guilt (reasonable portions)
Engage in some form of physical activity, every day if possible
Writing, drawing or some activity expressing inner world
Walking, gardening or any activity in nature (where air quality is acceptable)
Strive for ample sleep
Seek and nurture supportive relationships
Have routine non-invasive health screenings
Invest in annual bloodwork to monitor levels
Invest in collaboration with trusted medical professional for supplement protocols and guidance
Service to others and community
The main goal is to make the best possible choices with availabe resources and keep stress levels as low as possible… just to the point where it is needed for function!
Dr. Gray Fenton Interview, Part One:
Dr. Gray Fenton has been my doctor for more than 20 years. He has saved my health
numerous times, determining cause first and resulting in successful outcomes.
I had some pressing questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and wanted his opinion on what may help make us stronger during the onslaught of this novel viral strain.
Dr. Fenton agreed to an interview, resolved my uncertainties and I learned a lot, as always during our conversations.
I especially liked his description of cell mediation as “hand-to-hand” combat and antibody production being “distance weapons.” Very graphic and easy to visualize, thank you, and it made even more sense when I learned during the interview that Dr. Fenton is a Star Trek fan. Dr. Fenton points out, that as a physician, he has to be cautious, and not offer specific medical advice. He offers information, not personal recommendations, that being the job of one’s health professional who also determines appropriate choices of supplements and dosage.
Instead, he explains some important strategies for physiologic and immune support:
The two most important elements in diet are to maximize nutrients and minimize toxins.
He says to think in terms of what enhances immunity and what helps the immune system produce antibodies. For example, Vitamin C enhances cell-mediated immunity, the ability of each immune system cell to engulf an invader. DMG (Di-methyl Glycine), an amino acid derivative, stimulates antibody production.
Dr. Fenton looks at this concept in a metaphorical way, cell-mediated immunity is like hand-to-hand combat. Humeral immunity, which is antibodies, is distance weapons. Some, like Vitamin C work on both; IP6 enhances the hand-to-hand combat; DMG works on antibody production.
Zinc works on the epithelial cells, lining mucous membranes and skin, and offers support and protection to those cells, almost like a barrier. Dr. Fenton notes that zinc, being a trace mineral, can be harmful in excessive amounts.
Dr. Fenton suggests there are some prudent approaches we can take, first acknowledging the difficulty of dealing with a novel virus strain like COVID-19, too new to have clear, scientific, peer-reviewed studies. However, research on the Coronavirus family shows that certain nutrients can interfere with the ability of Coronavirus, as a family, to enter the cells. One of these, EGCG, comes from green tea extract. This is a major substance in green tea, also known as a catechin. There is extensive research on this; Dr. Fenton said, “just this morning” he found 92 published articles in scientific journals on the anti-viral effects of green tea extract.
The way that EGCG appears to work is that it is a substance that interferes with, inhibits the ability of viruses to enter the cell.
He emphasizes he’s not saying we can take this and not worry about coronavirus – instead, he’s offering reasonable, prudent and safe, that can help our bodies be stronger.
Mask Info with Nurse Sharon part 1
Nurse Sharon describes the importance of masks for safety of ourselves and others during the corona crisis. She stresses how proper fit is critical for two-way protection and makes washable, reusable masks with fleece and HEPA filters for added protection. Nurse Sharon gives tips that will certainly help flatten the curve!
Nurse Sharon tips:
Any mask is better than no mask.
A mask that does not fit snugly along the sides is like not wearing a mask, no protection!
A plain cotton protects others from you, not you from others.
If gloves are worn and Nurse Sharon doesn’t like them because she says people aren’t aware that gloves become very contaminated and need to be cleaned every time.
Dr. Gray Fenton Interview Part 2
Dr. Fenton clarifies more info about the immune system. He helped me relax about one of my favorite supplements, elderberry, which received some negative reviews recently regarding its potential to effect a “cytokine storm.” His explanations about the workings of the immune system are empowering for understanding one’s health and what we can do to support our immune system. Dr. Fenton points out that pigment-rich, nutrient-dense foods can lessen oxidative stress and reduce a chemical involved in viral replication and inflammation called Nuclear factor kappa B. He reminds us to maintain sufficient protein intake, as “the bows and arrows” produced by the immune system are antibodies, also known as “immunoglobulins” the “globulin” meaning protein. Avoiding sugar and simple carbohydrates is recommended, as they may have immunosuppressive qualities. Exercise is essential and reduces cortisol, the stress hormone which dampens the immune system. Supplements discussed for stress reduction were the B vitamins, inositol in particular, and lemon balm and l-theanine (found in green tea). As always, his sharing some of his encyclopedic knowledge is a treat and so helpful!
This recipe is my version of the granola recipe in Peter D’Adamo’s Diet by Blood Type book. I use organic ingredients whenever possible but I don’t stress about it (anymore.. 🙂 well, I do, a little bit.. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
4 cups oats (can be raw, old-fashioned, or rolled, just not instant)
Spread oats on baking sheet with rimmed edge (stainless steel is preferred).
Bake for 10 minutes.
Mix together in bowl:
scant 1/3 cup brown sugar
scant 1/3 cup organic extra-virgin olive oil
scant 1/3 cup honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
Pour on top of oat-walnut mixture. I toss with two soup spoons until oats are coated.
Put back in oven for 10 more minutes.
Remove from oven.
1 cup walnuts (or nuts of choice; walnuts have Omega-3s)
Break walnuts into pieces. Add to oats.
Add about 1/2 cup each of dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds and coconut flakes.
Easy peasy! I get a lot of love when I make this.. Let cool and store in glass or ceramic container.
Sometimes, well, quite often lately, delicious meals have come my way, and being an opportunitarian, I enjoyed some fine food. I had a little more fat and sugar than I like to consume, so today is about healthy liquids and and filtered water, lighter meals, no dairy or animal protein of any kind..eating light to spare and repair my digestive system? ❤
Healthy liquids shown here at the New River Grove are wheat grass juice, carrot juice with beaucoup ginger and a coconut for its water, all freshly made and the coconut just opened..?
this is my idea of going out drinking!