Eat healthier on a Budget!

check out this site for bone broth. 

There is a great recipe and explanation on this site for bone broth, but don't mistakenly believe I agree with everything on that site. I mainly disagree with his philosophy on milk protein, and his encouraging people to eat liver. Milk protein is difficult to digest even if you are not allergic to it, and it can effect your immune system. Liver is just too full of toxins.

I often hear that it is too expensive to eat healthy. I disagree. A mostly plant based diet is less expensive, and you can check the EWG dirty dozen for the most important organic choices. 

Incorporating many different legumes along with brown rice and other natural rice is cost saving. In Ancient Rome the paupers' diet resulted in the paupers being far healthier than the kings. 

Making foods from scratch and avoiding fast foods can be more cost effective, and until we get decent fast food choices it is our only good option. It is also far easier to avoid gluten and casein, i.e.wheat and dairy, if you cook from scratch. Gluten free bread is far less expensive to make than to buy. Email me for a good bread recipe.

I believe we are omnivores and I do not favor vegan diets, but I do believe in eating almost vegetarian with far less meat. We don't need to have meat, poultry or fish at every meal or even every day, and we need smaller portions. The 16 oz steak is really unnecessary and harmful. Modern animal husbandry practices has changed the quality of the meat to be lower in omega 3's favoring heart and other diseases, and the hormones and hormone like substances that may be present promote cancers. 

I like the 'how to feed a family of 4 on one chicken for a week philosophy'. However, you must use the natural chicken without hormones or antibiotics and shop for free range. Watching an old Julia Child rerun on PBS recently, I saw Julia belabor this fact at how the gelatin in the broth will not appear with these young chickens grown too fast by hormones and how to tell by the firmness of the breast bone if this is a good chicken or not.

The old tradition of making bone broth soups and stocks to have around to put in almost everything has almost disappeared except in gourmet restaurants. This is a shame. In periods of famine it was noticed that broth could sustain health with low calorie consumption. It is extremely nourishing. The gelatin that is produced in this process is rich in the amino acids that nourish the gut which are often bought in tablet form as part of the 4 R gut program for bowel health. The nutrients including minerals in the bones are extracted in the broth making process and are in forms that are easily absorbed and utilized. Pull out your crock pot and get to work.

Food for Mood

How do we get more tryptophan in our food and in our brain to promote positive mood, help with impulse control, get better sleep, and decrease carbohydrate cravings?

Thanksgiving is a time for turkey dinners. Turkey is famous for high levels of tryptophan which promote sleepiness. This is a myth; even I thought it was true. Although there is tryptophan in turkey, it is not at higher levels than in chicken. On Thanksgiving we probably get sleepy for other reasons, such as overeating or boredom. he he.  However I must add another thought. Following the turkey with sweet desserts might just help that little tryptophan sneak into the brain through the little channels, while all the sugar competes with the other larger proteins for the larger channels thus concentrating the tryptophan allowing its conversion to serotonin, the calming, happy neurotransmitter. Not a bad thing to have more of at family gatherings.

Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that can go to, 5 hydroxytryptophan (5HTP), which goes to serotonin, and in a dark environment serotonin can go to melatonin, which is the sleep hormone. Another path can take tryptophan to the B vitamin Niacin, also important in mental health. Of course tryptophan can also simply be incorporated into proteins in the body. Many factors, some known as co-factors such as Vitamins B1,B6, Folate, Vit C, Calcium and Zinc are involved with the successful conversion to serotonin. The stress hormones, other neurtotransmitters, and sex hormones can impact the function and production. Even the amount of sunlight and amount of sleep we get influences the reactions.

The drugs such as prozac and zoloft do not help make more serotonin, they only block the reuptake of what is already in the body. The term prozac poop-out is in the literature because the drugs may work less well as time goes on. It is better to use lifestyle and food and occasionally supplement, and use drugs as a last resort.

To increase our supplies of serotonin eat foods rich in tryptophan, and in between meals, occasionally snack on foods rich in carbohydrates in the form a natural fruit or a whole food starch. Moderation is the key; if you roller coaster your blood sugar it depletes serotonin through the actions of the stress hormones.

Tryptophan is the least abundant of the 22 amino acids, although it is present in all protein sources such as pork, meat or milk, which you might want to avoid due to the saturated animal fat and other environmental reasons. In poultry, whether duck, chicken or turkey, the levels are similar.

Here are some foods rich in Tryptophan:

Sesame Seeds

Sunflower Seeds




Wild Game




Chocolate - - - yea!

Educated or guided supplementation is also an option to help fill up your tanks. Please note: imbalances in other neurotransmitters or deficiencies in B vitamins, omega 3 fatty acids, or neurotoxins can affect brain function and mood, but that is beyond the scope of this tip. I will give you an important clue however; eat a wholefood plant based diet and you fix a lot of things.

These statements have not been evaluation by the Food & Drug Administration, and are not intended to diagnose, cure or treat any disease

Oral Hygiene

This seems appropriate for  the month which often ends with high doses of Halloween candy.

Here is a good link on you tube on how to brush your teeth. Of course they have a little commercial at the beginning, but we get a lot of free videos so it is worth it.

Help prevent cardiovascular disease by taking care of your mouth. Periodontal disease can add to the total inflammation in the body and affects close to 75% of Americans. Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in the U.S. Treating one may affect the other.

One of the triggers for inflammation is a low grade infection in the mouth. Please refer to the Gut page for a discussion on how bacteria can produce messenger molecules with far reaching effects. The low grade infection and inflammation can lead to different diseases in different people as it interacts with our uniqueness. Just as certain bacteria in the gut can lead to disease, it is even more accepted that gum disease is related to total body inflammation and therefore cardiac disease.

Go to

Click on the Perio-Cardio Connection link on the right side of the page. Within this article are references to literature from both the dental and cardiovascular fields that you can view on line.