Archives for: August 2000, 14
Hey Heidi! In several columns recently you mentioned maca root powder for both O's and A's as part of a weight loss / bloating solution. I find no reference to this in any of the books. When I researched it, I found out it's considered the equivalent of an herbal 'Viagra,' and made from some kind of potato or yam. Since both of those are avoids for A's, and ... qualified in O diet, could you please shed some light on this? What is it, what does it 'do,' who can use and who should not, etc.? Also, wasn't exactly looking for an aphrodesiac! Thanks! Thanks! Marissa
Hi, Marissa ~ Maca is neither a potato nor a yam ~ most of the root sold in the U.S. is Lepidium peruvianum Chacón, no relation to our Solanum tuberosum (taters) or Dioscorea villosa (yam). You will see loads of internet companies marketing maca as an aphrodisiac ~ this is due primarily to the fact that so many people are eager to buy aphrodisiacs, oddly enough. Anyway, let me refer you to a better source of information on this plant: http://www.rain-tree.com/maca.htm There the various claims are rectified and made proportional to the reality! :-)
I often suggest supplementing with maca because in my experience, people very often find it has a significant beneficial effect in several health areas. I suspect this is due to some deficiency in their diets which maca fills, which would have been difficult to trace, identify and supply otherwise. It is certainly a nutrient-packed food! Even for those who eat an exemplary diet (so far as we can tell), maca has had a marked effect on energy levels, PMS and pre-/menopausal symptoms, and general "outlook" (scientific term, lol!) where those were areas in which improvement was desired. Therefore, since it shows harm for none and potential for all, I hope those who feel they might benefit from it will give it a go. In terms of our food lists, it is yet untested, therefore an unknown. Hope this helps, dear! ;-)
Hi Heidi! Thanks for your answer awhile back, on the camping food. I hadn't even thought of buying my own dehydrator, now there is the nose in front of my face, what a great idea! I am appreciating. I noticed something in the letter from Helene the 79 yr old German lady -- she has craves sweets and also doesn't seem to be eating much protein (though I don't know gram measurements). That combination is always a red flag for me -- Protein deficiency can cause sweets craving, for me especially chocolate, and I can actually monitor my protein intake by whether I think of chocolate. I have also read that older people are most likely to be protein deficient and dehydrated. Protein deficiency would sure give her fatigue! Hope it helps, (o: Maia
A note for Helene (2/4/03): My sister is a type O and has found that if she isn't eating enough protein, she craves sweets, especially chocolate. Ginger
Thanks for Your Page! Great! Concerning the Question of Eva from today (Feb 4th): There is a paradise butcher down in Germany there, and they produce a far out pure calfliversausage, and many other products from beef or calf. No pork contained. But the calfliversausage is the best realy. Yours Georg (not connected to this butcher...) Böckle Landmetzgerei, Tel. 0049-(0)8374-8319 Fax -6230 http://www.metzgerei-boeckle.de/
Whoo, lovely advice all round! Thank you so much, friends!! I'm sure Helene will benefit from your kind offerings!!! :-D
Study on link between wheat and diabetes
[this story may be of interest to you. it is from the Ottawa Citizen of feb. 5. Cheers ~ Blaine]
FEB 05, 2003 THE OTTAWA CITIZEN PAGE: A1 / FRONT (NEWS)
Ottawa researcher links diet, childhood diabetes
Wheat protein pinpointed in pioneering study
Tom Spears, The Ottawa Citizen
For years the medical textbooks all agreed on one thing: Type 1 diabetes, the kind that strikes in childhood, is not caused by a person's diet. This didn't make life easier for Fraser Scott, an Ottawa medical researcher looking for things in our diet that do cause the disease. How do you ask for funding to investigate a connection that doesn't exist? This makes his team's discovery a little sweeter.
They have just published findings in the Journal of Biological Chemistry that show a protein in wheat appears to cause some children's immune systems to attack the wrong target, damaging their body's own cells and causing diabetes.
Dr. Scott first got the idea when he worked at Health Canada in the early 1980s. He was experimenting with a strain of lab mice bred to develop diabetes easily. But when he put the mice on a restricted diet, he noticed something odd. Mouse after mouse stayed healthy, showing no signs of diabetes. At first he suspected someone had sold him a batch of dud mice. But he tried again with more mice and got the same result. Maybe diet is important after all, he concluded.
Wheat seemed a possible candidate: Children with Type 1 diabetes (once called juvenile diabetes) often have celiac disease, an inability to digest wheat. He decided to have a closer look at wheat. Dr. Scott, Amanda MacFarlane and Karolina Burghardt at the Ottawa Health Research Institute and colleagues at the University of Ottawa and in Finland have isolated one protein in wheat that appears to cause the trouble. They scanned through one million candidate proteins from wheat, narrowing the field first to three that caused reactions in the immune system, and finally to one that is linked to damage in the islets, parts of the pancreas that produce insulin, which helps the cells break down sugar.
Diabetes occurs when the pancreas loses the ability to produce insulin. "To put it in the simplest terms, some individuals have an abnormal immune system," he says. A proper immune system should attack germs in our food, but not the proteins, of which we eat untold thousands every day. But when the immune system goes off course and starts attacking the proteins in wheat, he suspects that it keeps going on its destructive course and starts attacking the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas as well.
Somehow, he believes, wheat has mobilized these disease-fighting cells into full-scale attack mode -- but against the wrong target. These destructive cells in the immune system "are just sitting there until something stimulates them," Dr. Scott says. "Then they expand, migrate to the pancreas, and cause a long period of inflammation that ultimately kills the beta cell," the cell that makes insulin.
Other infections may also play a role, possibly making this immune attack worse. In his lab, one wheat protein called Glb1 caused blood from people and rats with diabetes to "light up" in an immune reaction. That appears to clinch the link with diabetes. If his findings hold up, this will be the first protein in food shown to cause at least some diabetes. (The disease also has genetic causes but isn't purely genetic: If one identical twin has it, chances are only about 30 per cent that the other twin will have it, despite having all the same genes.)
The team hasn't made the type of discovery that will create new drugs. But they do see some uses for the findings. It's possible, they believe, that exposing babies to the wheat protein at an early age, when the immune system is still learning what's an enemy, can "teach" the immune system not to react to wheat later in life. Another possibility is that people with family histories of diabetes may want to avoid wheat, "but that's a really grim diet," Dr. Scott say. His co-author Illimar Altosaar, who teaches food biochemistry in the medical school at the University of Ottawa, has started making "knockout" varieties of the wheat they used, removing just the one protein linked to diabetes. He wants to see whether rats fed the knockout variety will still develop diabetes. Wheat blends thousands of proteins, he said, "to make all the magical things we know in baking: the dough, the aroma, the mystique of bread, the baguette in a bicycle pannier. It's a very, very complex matrix." Looking for wheat varieties that don't have the problem protein "is the first thing we have to do," he added. Food scientists may also decide to engineer or breed a wheat variety without that protein.
Blaine, thanks so much for that article. I must disagree with Dr. Scott that wheat-free = "grim," but I applaud him for soldiering on with the research on this modern monster. :-) The more, the merrier in this field! Do you think I should suggest spelt to him as the first 'wheat-ish' place where that "problem protein" might not be found? Better yet, let's send him a link to this website! Even better yet, how about a copy of Eat Right and Live Right, for starters?
~:-) thanks again, dear!! most appreciated!!!