We keep hearing that those that are “immunocompromised” are at a higher risk for COVID-19, but what does that mean? Do you think of a person who has been going through chemotherapy? Do you think of a person in an assisted care facility with advanced age? What comes to mind for you?
We are in the midst of the strangest times but one of the beautiful things about it is, we are back in our kitchens cooking!!
Let’s look at a beautiful whole food that most of us probably have in our kitchen, honey. I often get asked, “is honey the same as sugar?” The answer to that question is “NO!”
Why You Should Ditch Sugar for Honey
First, honey is a whole food and sucrose is not. In other words, sucrose is an isolate – technically only one chemical compound – lifted from a background of hundreds of other components within the whole plant, whereas honey is composed of an equally complex array of compounds, many of which are well-known (including macronutrients and micronutrients, enzymes, probiotics, and prebiotics, etc.), others whose role is still completely a mystery.
Even the “sugar” in honey, which we might equate to the sugar in sugar cane or beet sugar, is a complex mix of 25 different types of sugar. Modern man in his “wisdom”, around the 1800s, started refining the sugar cane and eventually beets to create a single molecule called “sucrose” which has wreaked havoc with our health. Of course, there are now many names for sucrose when you look at a food label, but no matter what the name it doesn’t compare to the amazing benefits of honey.
But the differences between honey and sugar are not simply based on their respective chemical and nutritional compositions, but also the length of time we humans have had to adapt to them as a source of energy and nourishment.
8000-year-old cave painting from the Araña Caves in Spain.
We can assume our love affair with honey goes back ten’s of thousands of years! Our bodies have had infinitely more time to adapt to honey than to sugar.
The Beautiful Benefits of Honey
I’m often asked, “can I eat honey and will it raise my blood sugar and put weight on?”. There was a double-blind, randomized clinical study published in 2010 in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, comparing the effects of honey or sugar on your appetite hormones (ghrelin, peptide YY) and the glycemic and thermic effects after a meal. This was done on 14 healthy, non-obese women. The researchers found that the group given 450 calories of honey with their breakfasts had a “blunted glycemic response which may be beneficial for reducing glucose intolerance.” they also saw a positive modulation of appetite hormones, delayed the postprandial (after meal) ghrelin response and enhanced total peptide YY levels!!In
In Layman’s Terms
Ok, in layman’s language, that means you don’t’ get as hungry as soon after you eat and your blood sugar doesn’t spike which leads to weight gain.
Another study published in Journal of Medical Food in 2004, which compared honey to dextrose and sucrose, found that natural honey was capable of lowering plasma glucose, C-reactive protein (inflammation marker) , homocysteine in healthy, diabetic and hyperlipidemic subjects (people with high cholesterol.)
Animal research also confirms that, when compared to sucrose, honey is more effective at promoting lower weight gain, adiposity (fat accumulation), and triglycerides, WOHOO! Are you loving your honey yet???
Eat It Raw
Raw honey contains enzymes and probiotics which are destroyed when heated. These compounds contribute directly or indirectly to honey’s amazing health benefits, so go “raw” when you buy honey.
Take the active starch-digesting enzyme amylase, for instance, found only in the raw form of honey in a form known as diastase, which is believed to contribute to clearing antigen-antibody immune complexes associated with allergies to pollens. Also, if it is local honey, it will pick up small amounts of local pollen which may help to “immunize,” or desensitize an overly active immune response to these environmental triggers. There is also the enzyme in raw honey known as glucose oxidase, which produces hydrogen peroxide. The hydrogen peroxide formed as a result of this enzyme is associated with honey’s well-known wound sterilizing and healing properties.
Honey is also rich in prebiotics, as attributed to some of the carbohydrates and probiotics that contribute to supporting the healthy flora in our gut as well. Recently, in fact, an abundant, diverse and ancient set of beneficial lactic acid bacteria were discovered within the honeybee gut. Researchers found a collection of 50 novel species from the genera Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium from a single insect! Consuming raw honey, therefore, likely significantly impacts the microbiota within our own gut, and is one way to reconnect to ancient symbiotic relationships with flora that in our modern, sterilized, pasteurized, irradiated, poisoned, cooked, and the bleached world, are all but eradicated from our environment, soil, food, and therefore bodies! These probiotic boosting properties may explain why honey is effective at healing gastrointestinal disorders.
Bee products, including venom, wax, propolis ((Bee Propolis Abstracts), royal jelly, etc., have been found to provide potential medicinal solutions for over 170 different health conditions (587 Bee Abstracts) expressing over 40 distinct beneficial pharmacological actions. This growing body of research should awaken in us a greater respect for this sacred insect — even if only for selfish reasons — and when we say sacred, the word sacred means “to make holy,” and the word holy shares the same root meaning as the words whole and heal, so incredibly powerful!
The sad part of this is we are seeing an explosion of colony collapses. The correlation between pesticides and big agrichemicals can not be understated in the role they are playing in destroying our bees worldwide. These chemicals radically transform the bee’s natural habitat and microbiota which has been around far longer than we an imagine. Support Organic farmers!!
10 Day Detox
Yes, we get to have honey during our 10 Day Detox! Our next class starts on April 13th and what a perfect time to kick the sugar habit and build your immune system. Teaching you powerful truths such as “honey vs sugar” is what I love to do during these ten days. Let’s focus on ancient wisdom and the healing power it has!
Learn more here… 10 Day Detox
Yeah, I know, I feel you objecting to this already!! But I love my fruit!!
One of the biggest questions I get is “how do I stop sugar cravings???” And the answer is…….it depends (dang!) There are multiple reasons we may have sugar cravings, so that’s not a “one size fits all” answer.
Blood Sugar Regulation
This is a crucial area to address not only for sugar cravings but for fat loss. If our blood sugars are swinging from high to low to high all day long, not only will we crave sugar but we’ll feel fatigued, have brain fog and this impacts our thyroid function. Regulating your blood sugar is a #1 in my book for long term health. Alzheimer’s is being called Type III Diabetes because of the connection to high blood sugars.
This is where fruit comes in. Fruit is wonderful food in its whole form, full of antioxidants, vitamins, and fiber. The problem is the majority of fruit is also high in fruit sugars. Sugar makes you fat!
From lowest to highest
- Strawberries – 1 cup 7 grams of sugar
- Mango – one mango 45 grams of sugar!
So, as you can see, fruit can be “ok” and it can be a trigger for a big blood sugar surge!
When you are under stress you produce a hormone called Cortisol. Cortisol was designed to pull sugar stores (glycogen) out of your liver and muscles so you can run from that saber tooth tiger. Unfortunately, the type of stress we are under these days is a constant source, not an immediate danger source. This leads to sugar being flooded into the body constantly which creates “insulin resistance.” The cells get full of sugar and they change the lock for the insulin and it gets locked out of its sugar dump, so now it’s circulating around trying to find a place to put the sugar. What do you think it does??? It makes a new cell to dump the sugar in…..yep, a fat cell!
Adding more sugar to the diet, even in the form of fruit sugar, adds to this body burden of sugar storage. Even more challenging is we crave sugar when we are stressed!
Are You Addicted?
There was a study done with rats, sugar, and cocaine. The rats were given cocaine in a watering tube and sugar water in a watering tube. Want to guess which tube they drank from more? Yep, the sugar!
We know that our brains have “receptor sites” for sugar, drugs, alcohol, and neurotransmitters. The bummer is, the same receptor site for drugs and alcohol is the same receptor site for sugar. Yes, you can become addicted to sugar.
Always remember this, your brain is a protein and fat lover. When we crave sugar, often what the brain really wants is protein or fat. Julia Ross runs the most successful drug and alcohol rehab center in the U.S. using nutrition and isolate amino acids (protein). She has also written several books, The Mood Cure and The Diet Cure which both take a deep dive into the brain, addictions and the natural solutions to sugar cravings.
Sugar also depletes your brain of Serotonin, your “feel good” neurotransmitter. When you are low on Serotonin you crave more sugar! Just like an addiction, the more you use the more you want.
There is more but I won’t make this any longer. The body is a complex system, but remember this, you can live without any carbohydrates in the diet. The body can convert the little in protein to glucose and the little from vegetables to glucose. We have no minimum daily requirement for carbohydrates! Gasp!!
I teach you this and more during my 10 Day Detox which starts October 21st! I teach you which fruits and how many to eat each day, what you can do to “interrupt” your sugar monster and send him on his way, what foods balance your blood sugars and tips and tools to lowering stress!
Just in time to get your body “de-sensitized” to sugar before the holidays!
I know, that’s kind of backward from what you’ve been told! Today you’re going to learn the truth about why you may not be losing weight and why I think so many people struggle to do so.
Most of us never learn that in order for the body to release “fat” stores it must have the ability to detoxify first. Toxins are stored in fat! If your liver does not have the support to move these toxins into a water-soluble form and excrete them out of the body they get recirculated back into the bloodstream and back into the fat and fat loss stops.
Five years ago I started doing thirty-day classes with Dr. Jana Schrier here in Georgetown TX. They were called “Detox to Weight-loss”. She had asked that I spend one night a week with her patients educating them on why you must detox the body first before the weight will come off. Not only was it a huge success (many alumni are still practicing what they learned) but Dr. Schrier saw many of the lab numbers for some of these patients that were very positive changes in a thirty-day time frame.
Have You Heard of Obesogens?
Obesogens are artificial chemicals that are believed to contribute to obesity. They come from things like plastics, cookware, cosmetics, pharmaceutical drugs. Additionally they come from pesticides and herbicides, and chemicals used for industrial purposes just to name a few.
Obesogens interfere with your endocrine system and affect your hormones. Some endocrine disrupters exert their effects by activating estrogen receptors. This can cause harmful effects in both men and women.
The role of environmental chemicals in obesity has garnered increased attention in academics. The National Institutes of Health has come on board. They are suggesting this could be part of the reason for our obesity epidemic. “There are many studies in both humans and animals. The National Toxicology Program found real biological plausibility.” In 2011 the NIH launched a 3-year effort to fund research exploring the role of environmental chemical exposures in obesity, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.
When you lose weight you free up all these Obesogens from the fat stores and “wham!” the body gets inundated with toxicity! This, in turn, leads to the lowering of your active thyroid, which lowers metabolism. This makes you hold onto fat!
You ARE Toxic!
We come into the world toxic. As far back as 2005 a study done on ten newborn baby’s showed 287 chemicals in those little bodies!
There is no way you or I are not filled with toxins. Even if we eat organic, reduce chemical exposure in our home with our cleaning products, cookware, cosmetics, etc. we live in a sea of chemicals.
If you work in an office you are surrounded by plastics that out-gas, carpets that out-gas, the air that is full of this stuff. If you wash your hands you absorb chlorine and fluoride right through your skin.
The most recent area of toxicity is coming from the “unseen” world of Electro Magnetic Fields. Science has now shown that these EMF’s can lead to insulin resistance (among hundreds of other problems). The EMF’s affect the calcium channel on the cell site, which is a primary cell function, and in doing so impact the whole cell. You and I live in a “sea” of wi-fi signal and cell signals!
Before Starting Any Weight-loss Program – Detox!
This may feel overwhelming but I’m here to help you sort all this out and guide you towards detoxing safely!
I’m first and foremost an educator. What we found in our “live” classes was, the participants “got” why they needed to detox, not only for weight-loss but for long term health. Let me teach you things you did not know about why your body is holding onto weight!
10 Day Detox
Our next class starts on October 21st! This is the perfect time to do this, before the holiday’s hit and the cold and flu season is in full swing. We will be setting your body up to get off sugar, gently detox, lower inflammation, boost immune function as well as teaching you tips and tools to start to lower your toxic burden.
I will be coming back from a ten-day trip to Hawaii and I will be ready to DETOX with you!!
Join us on this journey……learn more HERE
Let’s do this!
My Mom died of Alzheimer’s and my Dad died of Parkinson’s disease. It was a long and sad journey to watch their bodies and minds deteriorate. My Mom ended up in an Alzheimers facility then eventually in a skilled nursing facility in her last days on this earth. She had not recognized any of us for over a year by the time she passed on. It truly is a sad, sad disease.
I can’t lie, cookies, cakes, pies and Christmas goodies are all things I Love! Of course, I can’t eat them all the time, but I sure like an occasional treat without too much guilt.
Recipes that are a healthier option are something I’m always searching of. One requirement is that they must taste wonderful! Today I’m going to share with you some of my favorite holiday goodies, because what would the holiday’s be without a little “sweetness”!
Kiwi and Raspberry Tart
This is a beautiful tart to make for a holiday party, so colorful and your guests will love it!