Category Archives: Chris Wark

Healthy nuts and seeds you should eat every day

Newsflash!
Nuts and seeds are super healthy and most of us aren’t eating enough of them. They are a great natural source of vitamins, minerals, protein, fat, and fiber. I’ve eaten tons of nuts and seeds as part of my anti-cancer diet since January 2004 and I think you should too.
Depending on whose list you read, the number one healthiest nut is either the almond or the walnut, but there’s no way to really rank them. The “healthiest nut” is the one with the nutrients your body needs most on a given day. Of course no one knows which one that is. So the best strategy is to eat a variety.

Here are the top healthiest nuts:

Almonds have as much calcium as milk, and contain magnesium, vitamin E, selenium and lots of fiber. They can lower cholesterol and help prevent cancer.
Walnuts are extremely good for your heart and brain, and contain ellagic acid a cancer-fighting antioxidant.
Pecans have tons of vitamins and minerals like Vitamins E and A, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, potassium, manganese, B vitamins, and zinc. And they help lower cholesterol.
Brazil Nuts are a good source of protein, copper, niacin, magnesium, fiber, vitamin E and selenium.
Cedar Nuts/Pine Nuts have Vitamins A, B, D, E, P and contain 70% of your body’s required amino acids.
Cashews are rich in minerals like copper, magnesium, zinc, iron and biotin. They are actually a low-fat nut, and like olive oil, they have a high concentration of oleic acid, which is good for the ticker (your heart). According to Dr. Andrew Saul, one big handful of cashews provides one to two thousand milligrams of tryptophan, which will work as well as prescription antidepressant Prozac.  
Note: Cashews are not recommended for cancer patients due to potential levels of fungus

Here are the top healthiest seeds:

Flax seeds are definitely at the top of my list. Two tbsp of ground flax seed per day is ideal and easy to add to oatmeal or smoothies. I also take Barleans Cold-Pressed Organic Flax Oil because it is the best source of parent omega-3s (better than fish oil) and Lignans, super anti-oxidants that help fight cancer. It also contains a lot of fiber and can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. 
Chia Seeds are incredibly healthy seeds rich in omega-3 oils, protein, anti-oxidants, calcium, and fiber. Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia!
Hemp Seeds are a certified superfood with cancer and heart disease prevention properties. They are high in protein and fiber, with balanced omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.
Sunflower seeds also help prevent heart disease and cancer with phytochemicals, folate, Vitamin E, selenium and copper.
Pumpkin Seeds are great for your immune system with lots of antioxidants (carotenoids), omega-3 fatty acids and zinc.
Sesame Seeds are a good source of calcium, magnesium, zinc, fiber, iron, B1 and phosphorus.  They can lower blood pressure, and protect against liver damage. Sesame seeds have also been linked to prevention of many diseases like arthritis, asthma, migraine headaches, menopause, osteoporosis, and may even reduce PMS symptoms.
Tahini is a ground sesame seed paste that’s popular ingredient in Middle Eastern dishes we eat, like hummus.
Finally Apricot seeds (aka Apricot kernels), Apple seeds, and other bitter fruit seeds containAmygdalin aka Vitamin B17 which has incredibly powerful anti-cancer properties.  There are many cases of people who cured their cancer with Apricot kernels alone!  The pharmaceuticalLaetrile which is a concentrated form of Amygdalin has been used in cancer clinics outside the US for over 50 years. I dedicated an entire post to Apricot Kernels HERE.
Do Nut Eat This (worst pun ever, I’m sorry)
The one nut I don’t really eat much is the peanut, which is technically a bean.
Here’s why:

Peanuts can contain a carcinogenic mold called aflatoxin, and they are notorious for being one of the most pesticide-contaminated crops.
Instead of peanut butter, I prefer to eat organic nut butters like Almond Butter, Sunflower Seed Butter and Walnut butter instead of peanut butter.
Embrace Your Inner Hippie
I like to go to the bulk section of Whole Foods (where the big plastic bins of nuts are) and buy a couple pounds of Raw Organic seeds and nuts. I take them home and mix them all together in my Super Trail Mix. 

Eat them straight out of the bag, throw some in a bowl for the family, or toss them on a salad. Either way, a couple handfuls of my Super Trail Mix every day will rock your body with super nutrients. So go ahead and embrace your inner hippie, throw on a pair of birkenstocks with socks, dowse yourself in patchouli, and load up on some trail mix. I like to keep a bowl out for everyone to snack on at home, and a tupperware container in the car to snack on when I’m out and about.
Notice I said “Raw Organic“.  That’s super important.  I don’t buy the fried, salted, roasted, honey-glazed, candied, or any other “special flavor” nuts. Frying and roasting nuts converts the fats into an unhealthy form, and most seasonings are made from artificial flavors, chemicals, and preservatives, contain MSG, and are high in sodium. 
If you want to maximize the nutrients you get from nuts, soak them in distilled or purified water overnight. This helps neutralize enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid both of which may affect digestion and absorption of the nutrients in seeds and nuts. It can also help reduce the amount of pesticides on them if they are not organically grown.
Simple Soaking Directions: Place 4 cups of nuts in a bowl with enough distilled water to cover the nuts completely.  Add a tablespoon of celtic sea salt.  This helps the neutralize enzyme inhibitors. Different seeds and nuts have different soaking times, but the easiest rule of thumb to remember is to let them soak 7 hours (overnight).  You many or may not like the taste of soggy nuts, so you’ll need to dehydrate them in a dehydrator or oven for 12-24 hours. If you do it in the oven, keep the temperature under 150 degrees and shift them around on the pan occasionally. You don’t want to roast the nuts, just dry them out.  Every oven is different so it might take some experimentation to get the ideal drying time figured out.  And because this is essentially a 24 hour process it makes sense to do several big batches at a time. Afterward compare the flavor of the soaked and dried nuts versus the non-soaked nuts. You might be surprised to find they taste better, depending on the nut and your taste.
One exception: Cashews should soak 6 hours or less and need to dry out quickly at 200-250 degrees or they can get funky.
The Excalibur Dehydrator is the one that all the health gurus use and recommend.
Here’s a shopping list you can copy, paste, and print out:
Almonds
Walnuts
Pecans
Brazil Nuts
Cedar Nuts
Cashews
Sunflower Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds
Almond, Cashew or Sunflower Seed Butter 

Tahini
The rest of the seeds I mentioned don’t work very well in trail mix because they are too small and all end up at the bottom.
One of my favorite snack bars is the NutivaHempseedBar.  It’s made with organic hemp, flax, sunflower, pumpkin seeds, and sweetened with honey.  It’s a super tasty way to get some super healthy seeds in your diet.
They also have a Flax & Raisin Bar, and a Flax, Hemp & Chocolate Bar.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Since my last post was on alkalizing, and thanks to a facebook thread with Deanna and Kathy,
I figured I’d continue with that theme and write about one of my favorite products on planet earth,
which was also a staple in my anti-cancer diet:  Apple Cider Vinegar.
Apple Cider Vinegar is exactly what it sounds like:  Vinegar from fermented apple juice.
If you’ve never had it, it tastes like vinegar but with an appley twist, and is celebrated in the natural health world as a “cure-all” internal cleanser.
It’s rich in enzymes and potassium, which your body uses to regenerate soft tissue, and it’s an alkalizer.
Clinical studies have shown:
-It’s good for diabetes as it lowers blood glucose levels
-It lowers cholesterol
-It lowers blood pressure and promotes heart health
Studies have also shown it may be able to kill cancer cells or slow their growth.  Nice!
Apple Cider Vinegar is also reported to assist in curing allergies, sinus infections, acne, flu, chronic fatigue,
candida, acid reflux, sore throats, contact dermatitis, arthritis, and gout.
According to Bragg Health Products it also:
Helps Remove Body Toxins * Helps Promote a Youthful Body *Helps support a healthy immune system
* Helps Maintain Healthy Skin * Helps Control Weight * Improves Digestion and Assimilation
* Soothes Tight and Aching Joints and Sore Muscles from exercise * Soothes irritated skin.
Whether all those claims are true, I don’t know.  All I know for sure is, I love it.
And I never liked vinegar until I tried Apple Cider Vinegar about 12 years ago.  Now I’m a fiend for it.
(Full disclosure: my wife can’t stand the stuff)
The most popular way to take it is to mix a teaspoon of ACV with a teaspoon of raw honey in a glass of filtered water.
Even if you don’t like vinegar, that makes it super easy to drink; kinda like diluted apple juice.  It’s a great way to start the morning and they even bottle it and sell it diluted with honey as a beverage.
I took the picture on the right when I saw some recently in Fresh Market.
I also mix ACV with olive oil and spices in a salad dressing I make from scratch, and I often just swig it straight out of the bottle for a little kick.  Of course it’s a great healthy substitute for any recipe that calls for vinegar, just prepare for a slightly different flavored dish.
If you can’t tell, my absolute favorite brand is Bragg Organic Apple Cider Vinegar.  It’s raw and unfiltered, leaving all the vital nutrients and enzymes intact; unlike most vinegars which are pasteurized, filtered, processed, and nutritionally “dead”.
Paul Bragg was a lifelong health crusader and mentor to Jack Lalane.  He wrote a book on Apple Cider Vinegar and numerous other books on diet, exercise, fasting, etc; and is just basically awesome.  I have most of his books in my library.
You can find 16oz bottles of Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar at most grocery stores, or you can get a big ol’ 1 gallon jug HERE.
Bragg also makes some other delicious products we love: Liquid Aminos and Organic Sprinkle Seasoning.
Cheers!

My Anti-Cancer Fruit Smoothie

That’s the abbreviated title.  The full name is:
The Raw Vegan, Anti-Cancer, Super Anti-Oxidant Fruit Smoothie!
This recipe was given to me as part of my 
Anti-Cancer Diet by my Naturopath John Smothers and I’ve been drinking it nearly everyday since 2004, either as a meal or a snack.
Surgeon Generals Warning:
Highly Addictive Deliciousness.
Here is the recipe:
1 Young CoconutI buy a case of nine for around $12 at a local Asian market.
Make sure you ask for “Young Coconuts”, they are much softer and easier to cut than fully mature coconuts.
I love Asian markets. It’s like stepping into a strange exotic world. The shelves are filled with weird products and food you will never see anywhere else; all written in a language you can’t read.  So be prepared. Also the employees may not speak English very well, if at all. Lots of nods and smiles.  And there will be some strange odors.
The Chinese market I frequent keeps cases of coconuts in the back freezer.
I always ask someone to fetch me a case from the back because it’s easier than trying to carry nine coconuts in those little hand baskets.  A case of 9 coconuts costs me about $14. 

Some grocery stores sell them individually for around $2 each.
I love the instructions on the case:
1) Touch knife to coconut
2) Insert straw and flower
Ok here’s the recipe:
1-2 cups of Frozen Organic BerriesI buy them prepackaged in the frozen section of my local Whole Foods Market, and you may find them at conventional supermarkets as well.  They usually cost around $3.99 for a 1 lb bag. 
They usually contain blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries; and a package should have about three servings.  I recently discovered that Costco also sells huge bags of Organic Berries.  Score!
Some of the known anti-cancer nutrients in these fruits:
Blueberries contain ellagic acid, anthrocyanins, OPC, and caffeic acid.
Raspberries and Strawberries contain ellagic acid, and laetrile.
Blackberries also contain ellagic acid and have anti-mutagenic effects as they protect cell dna from damage
1 Frozen Organic Banana
The frozen banana makes it sweet, thick, and frosty like adding ice cream would.  Ice is optional, if you like it icey.
For anyone out there worried about the sugar in fruit, you should know that the fat in the coconut slows down the absorption of the fruit into your blood stream, keeping your insulin in check.
Next the fun part: Getting the coconut open.  The goal is to cut the top off the coconut without 1) injuring yourself or 2) spilling the juice everywhere.  You will need a strong and sharp serrated knife.  A bendy blade ginsu knife is not going to get it. 
I’m partial to Cutco Cutlery.
Here’s how you do it:
CAREFULLY insert the blade straight down with a stabbing motion into the top of the coconut (Hi-ya!), then make a sideways cut about 2-3 inches long. Repeat this 4 to 6 times, working your way around the top of the coconut connecting the cuts until you can easily remove the octagon-shaped top.
-Pour the coconut juice into a blender.
-Scoop out the white coconut meat with a spoon and put it in the blender.
-Blend the juice and meat together to make coconut milk.
(I use and highly recommend the Vita-Mix 5200 Blender.)

In most blenders you’ll need to blend up the juice and meat before adding other ingredients. It will be lumpy if you don’t.
-Blend in 1 cup of frozen organic berries
-Blend in 1 banana (frozen is best, if your blender can handle it)
Of course there are lots more ingredients you could add to jazz it up, but that’s the basic simple smoothie I drink nearly everyday.
So prepare to enjoy a delicious, super healthy, high anti-oxidant, cancer-fighting smoothie!
Note:  If you can’t get young coconuts locally, you should be able to find canned organic coconut milk at the grocery store. It’s more economical as each can contains 7 servings for around $2.00. We keep a few cans of it handy to use when I run out of fresh ones.
The total cost of ingredients is about $3.50 and it makes 32-40 oz of smoothie, depending on the size of the coconut.  That’s less than a dollar per 8 oz. serving!
The best way to freeze bananas:
Peel a bunch of ripe bananas and put them all in a freezer bag.  Ripe means they have what my mother-in-law calls “sugar kisses” on them.  We just call them brown spots.
Some people individually wrap them in cellophane. I think it’s too much trouble.
You can also put a kabob stick in them and eat them like a popsicle once they’re frozen.  This is a great healthy alternative to popsicles.   Hey parents!   Kids love frozen bananas.  Another cool thing you can do is run a frozen banana through a Champion Juicer and make banana “ice cream”.
Vita-Mix 5200 Blender
Some blenders just can’t handle frozen bananas.
The Vita-Mix 5200 is a commercial blender that will destroy anything in it’s path.
It’s the one most smoothie places use and its 2HP motor will make your blender at home look like a toy.
It comes with 400 recipes for smoothies, blended veggie juice, nut butters, soups, salsa, guacamole, healthy ice cream, even how to churn fresh butter, and mill whole grains.
This is the single most versatile kitchen appliance on the planet!  They give you a 30 day free trial and a 7 year warranty.   And it comes in red, white, and black. We got the red one and we love it!!!
This link will get you free shipping when you checkout:
<->
If you’d like to see my coconut smoothie skills in action, 
I made a how-to video you can watchHERE.
You also might like my related posts on Juicing and The Giant Cancer Fighting Salad.
(((c)))

I Juiced to Beat Cancer and Turned Orange!

The Centers for Disease Control and the National Cancer Institute recommend you eat at least 5 servings of fruits and veggies per day, but 9+ servings per day is essential if you want to transform your health. Most folks I know don’t even average 1 serving per day.
Sorry grains and starches don’t count.
Our modern processed food diet has left our bodies starving for nutrients at the cellular level. Juicing is the best way to extract massive amounts of nutrients from vegetables; without having to sit down and eat several pounds of vegetables per day.
Let’s review the digestive process, shall we?  
When you chew food you are essentially juicing it in your mouth. You are breaking it down into liquid form, and breaking open the cell walls, so the nutrients can be absorbed by your body. The particles that cannot be broken down by your teeth or by your digestive system, pass through. The better you chew your food before you swallow, the more nutrients you are able to absorb.
A major component of my anti-cancer diet was drinking eight 8 oz glasses of freshly juiced organic carrot and vegetable juice every day.
My strategy was to eliminate all processed food from my diet and flood my body with vital raw nutrients in order to give my immune system all the fuel and firepower it needed to heal me. Juicing releases approximately 90% of the nutrients in food, which is about three times better than you can do with your teeth.  Another important factor is absorption. If your  body is overloaded with toxins, you could be absorbing as little as 1% of the nutrients in the food you eat.
My daily routine: I got up every morning and made enough juice (about 64 oz) to last me throughout the day. I put it in air tight pitchers, and mason jars to keep it fresh and potent throughout the day. I drank 12-16 oz at a time: early morning, mid-morning, lunchtime, afternoon, dinnertime, and before bed.
Why Carrot Juice?
Raw carrot juice is rich in cancer fighting nutrients: vitamins, minerals, flavonoids and carotenoids including Vitamins A, B, C, D, E, K, alpha-carotene, beta-carotene and lignans (enterolactone). It also is a good natural source of sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, sulphur, silicone and chlorine.
“The carotenoids and vitamin A have shown a strong ability to inhibit cancer induction not only by viruses, but also by chemicals and radiation as well. At least part of the effect is from these nutrients acting directly on the genes.”
(Deflora S, Bagnasco M, Vainio H. Modulation of genotoxic and related effects by carotenoids and vitamin A in experimental models: mechanistic issues. Mutagenesis 14: 153-172, 1999.)
There are some natural health advocates out there that do not recommend carrot or beet juice because they think it contains too much sugar and “sugar feeds cancer”. While it is true that cancer cells feed on glucose, the sugars in plant food can also deliver anti-cancer nutrients straight to the cancer cells. I’m talking about nutrients that can turn off cancer genes, interfere with cancer cell reproduction, and cause apoptosis (cancer cell suicide). So I never worried about the sugar content in beets and carrots.
I drank so much carrot juice I turned orange. Really orange.  The palms of my hands looked crazy.  This picture was taken November 2004, Micah was eight months pregnant with our first daughter Marin.  This photo has not been retouched.  I really was that orange!  (I was also super skinny at 6’2″ 140 lbs.  It’s pretty tough to gain weight on a raw vegan diet!)
One nurse actually told me I was drinking too much carrot juice.  Silly nurse, you can’t overdose on carrots!
Note:  Fruit juice is very high in concentrated sugar which may be problematic if you are sick, so I chose not to drink it.  A good rule of thumb is to Eat your Fruits and Juice your Vegetables. Fruit is better in a smoothie because you are still eating it whole. The fiber slows the absorption of sugar into your bloodstream.
There are a million different combinations of veggie juice, but here’s the one I drank the most.
Carrot, Celery, Beet and Ginger Juice :  
My basic
 formula is 5 Carrots, 5  Celery Stalks, 1/4 of a Beet (root and top), and a small slice of Ginger Root about the size of a quarter (the coin). Ginger is a very powerful cancer fighting spice, don’t leave it out!  Also don’t get too hung up on the formula. The type of juicer you have will determine how many carrots and celery stalks you’ll need to juice to make a glass.  And there’s a million different  juice combinations out there, so have fun experimenting.  Watch the ginger, it’s strong.
Straight carrot juice is delicious by itself, but the beet, celery, and ginger add a broad spectrum of powerful nutrients.  Also make sure you’re buying Organic produce.  The last thing you need is chemical pesticides in your juice. You may not like the taste but it doesn’t matter, your not drinking it for the taste. Just down it.
I also like to mix in an alkalizing green powder like
 Perfect Food Raw. It’s made with 35 Nutrient-Dense Raw Organic Greens, Sprouts, and Veggies and it’s rich in Chlorophyll, Trace Minerals, Antioxidants, Enzymes, and Probiotics.  Feel free to add as many vegetables to it as you want: broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, asparagus, peppers, cucumber, etc.
Here’s what I did: I got up every morning and made enough juice to last me throughout the day.  This was around 64 oz total, or eight 8 oz servings. I stored the juice in air tight mason jars in the fridge. You may not need to drink that much… If you’re familiar with the Law of Diminishing Returns, you know that there is a point at which you are consuming the maximum amount of nutrients that your body can absorb in one day. It’s hard to know where that point is exactly, so my strategy was to overdose on nutrition, to insure that my body was getting all the nutrients it needed to heal.
Note: I don’t juice leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale because they just aren’t very juicy. You have to juice like a pound just to get a few drops! I prefer to blend leafy greens up in a smoothie, that way you don’t waste any.
A great book on juicing is The Juicing BibleIt’s got tons of detailed information on the nutrient content and health benefits of different veggie juices, and lots of combinations to try.
And if you’re serious about juicing everyday, you’re gonna need a high quality juicer.
I love my Champion JuicerI’ve been using the one in the picture since 2004. It has a heavy duty commercial motor and is way easier to clean up than most juicers.  And believe me, easy clean up will make all the difference in making juicing a part of your regular routine.  
If money is tight, there are cheaper alternatives like The Juiceman ProCheap Juicers don’t get as much juice out and they don’t last as long, but if that’s all you can afford, get one!
My Champion Juicer working like a champ!
Juicing is the first component of my Super Health Triad.
(((c)))

Quercetin: The Anti-Cancer Flavonoid

I first heard of this flavonoid from one of my heroes Dr. Russell Blaylock, M.D.
Blaylock is a recently retired board-certified neurosurgeon and one of the rare M.D.’s out there that has also devoted his time to become an expert on natural therapies despite criticism from the medical community at large.
His book Natural Strategies For Cancer Patients is a in-depth study of the specific nutrients within foods that strengthen your immune system and help your body fight cancer on a cellular level.
He also addresses what supplements to take that can minimize the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation if someone were to go that route.  Natural Strategies was a great read and I learned a lot.  Highly recommended.  It’s is also a really good book to give to anyone with cancer.  The fact that he is an M.D. lends a lot of credibility to his research and message.
Alright enough about Dr. Blaylock, The super flavonoid I’m talking about is called…
Quercetin (pronounced kwɜrsɨtɨn).
If you haven’t heard of it, don’t worry, you’re normal.  But before I go any further I should admit something, I exaggerated a little bit in the title of this post.  Quercetin actually has a rival for most powerful flavonoid, and that is Curcumin, the active ingredient in Tumeric,which is the main ingredient in curry powder.  Together, Quercetin and Curcumin are the dynamic duo of anti-cancer flavonoids.
Here are some fun facts about quercetin according to the research that Dr. Blaylock has assembled:
Quercetin protects the DNA in cells because collects around the nucleus of cells offering powerful anti-oxidant protection.
It has anti-inflammatory properties.  Which is good, because inflammation is bad.
It’s also a powerful natural histamine blocker. I don’t really have allergies, but some folks with allergies and sinus issues swear by it.
Here’s another big benefit.  Quercetin binds to excess iron in your body, removes it from tissues, and prevents its absorption.  This process is called chelation. This is critical asiron can be a key ingredient in cancer cell growth. Quercetin has the ability to steal the iron from cancer cells which can stop their growth and induce cell death.  Even if you don’t have cancer, it’s always good practice to eat green vegetables with meat to limit the amount of iron your body absorbs. Yes you need iron, but too much iron is bad for you. FYI: Red meat is the highest source of iron.
Check this out:
A 2007 study called “Ten-Year Comparison of the Influence of Organic and Conventional Crop Management Practices on the Content of Flavonoids in Tomatoes” published in theJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that organically grown tomatoes had 79% more quercetin than the conventionally grown ones.
If that doesn’t convince you that buying organic is better…then you just crazy.
As I’ve said in previous posts, conventional produce has been cross-bred and is engineered to be big and beautiful, but it is nutrient deficient and loaded with toxic fertilizers and pesticides.  Some conventional produce is genetically modified (GMO), but they aren’t required to disclose that to us yet; and there’s no way to tell.  The most common GMO foods are Soy (93%), Corn (86%), Canola (75%), and commercial milk which contains rBGH, a genetically modified hormone to increase milk production.  Avoid these foods like the plague!
Ok so where else can you get quercetin besides organic tomatoes?
The best sources of quercetin are organic: apples, red onions, black and green tea, red grapes, raspberries, cranberries, citrus fruits, and green leafy vegetables.
I eat all those foods often but I also take Quercetin in supplement form.  Blaylock’s recommended dose is 1000mg, 3 times per day with meals. If you’re taking it for allergies you may want to take more. And from what I understand it may take a few weeks before you notice any improvement.
One of the brands Blaylock references is Activated Quercetin by Source Naturals.
I also like the Source Naturals Liquid Quercetin
Activated Quercetin by Source Naturals
And definitely, definitely, definitely get this book:
(((c)))

The Best Exercise For Your Immune System: Rebounding!

Ok so I may have gotten a little carried away during the rebounding photo shoot…
Here’s the video I made about rebounding and below it is my blog post with more details.
Let’s be honest about the immune system, most of us really have no idea what it is, or exactly how it works, we’re just glad we have one.
The immune system is incredibly complex because your body has many lines of defense to rid itself of foreign invaders. In this post I’m going to address one critical component of your immune system. That is your lymphatic system.
Here’s a quick anatomy lesson (I’m going to try to keep this really simple)
Your lymphatic system is composed of your tonsils, thymus, bone marrow, spleen, lymphatic fluid, vessels, and lymph nodes.
The thymus and bone marrow produce white blood cells called lymphocytes.
Your blood vessels deliver oxygen and nutrients to your cells.
Your lymph vessels are like blood vessels except they are full of clear lymphatic fluid that carries white blood cells (B cell and T cell lymphocytes) throughout your body so they can attack invaders and infected cells.
Your lymphatic fluid also carries dead cells, metabolic waste, and toxins away from healthy tissue to be eliminated through sweat, mucus, urine, and liver bile which is carried out in your poop.
Lymph nodes are like holding stations that filter the lymph fluid and capture microbes for B and T cells to deal with. They are located in your armpits, groin, neck and around the blood vessels of your chest and abdomen.
(End of anatomy lesson)
Every day we are bombarded with toxins in our environment and in our food which is why detoxification is such a critical process in your body. If the detox process is hindered, toxins will build up in your body eventually causing acidity and toxemia. These are the root causes of nearly all disease.
You have about three times more lymphatic fluid than blood, but here’s the catch, there’s no pump!  Muscle contractions in your body encourage the lymphatic fluid to circulate through a series of one-way valves in your body. So the more you move your body, the more you move your lymphatic fluid.
One of the lesser talked about benefits of exercise is that it moves your lymphatic fluid, which promotes detoxification in your body.
Your skin is the largest detoxification organ and if you exercise vigorously enough to raise your body temperature  you will sweat, expelling toxins out through your skin.
The Best Exercise for the Lymph System
Back in 2004 when I first started to research natural therapies I read every natural cancer survival testimony I could find. I found many common threads, and one of them was jumping on a mini trampoline, aka Rebounding. I figured since so many natural survivors and health practitioners were doing it there must be something to it…
Rebounding creates an increased G-force resistance (gravitational load) and positively stresses every cell in your body. As a result, it strengthens your entire musculoskeletal system: your bones, muscles, connective tissue, and even organs.  And it promotes lymphatic circulation by stimulating the millions of one-way valves in your lymphatic system.
Sounds pretty good right?
In addition, rebounding is very low impact and allows you to do jumping and aerobic exercises for much longer intervals than you could on solid ground without tiring out or creating harmful oxidative and adrenal stress.
NASA produced an interesting report about the benefits of rebounding you can read Here.
Here are the three basic Rebounding Exercises:
The Health Bounce is gently bouncing up and down on a rebounder without your feet leaving the mat.  It is very low impact and very effective at moving your lymphatic system. Most folks can easily do this for an hour or more while watching tv.
The Strength Bounce is jumping as high as you can. It strengthens primary and stabilizer muscles throughout your body, improves your balance, and moves your lymphatic system like nothing else.  That’s what you want to work up to.
Aerobic Bouncing is jumping jacks, twisting, running in place, bouncing on one leg at a time, dancing, and any other crazy maneuvers you can think of. Doing these high intensity aerobic exercises will get your blood pumping and your sweat on.
If you are too weak to jump you can sit on the rebounder and bounce gently in a seated position. I bought my rebounder in 2004 a few months after abdominal surgery, and found it too painful to really jump on at first, so I just did the health bounce. As my body healed, the pain went away and I started doing the Strength and Aerobic Bouncing.
When fighting cancer I did this 2-3 times per day.
My typical routine is to warm up for a couple minutes with the health bounce, 5-10 minutes of strength and aerobic bounce variations, and finish up with another couple minutes of the health bounce. I put on headphones and listened to worship music or healing scriptures while bouncing. This is an amazing way to start the day.
To maximize the benefit of your rebound workout:
-Drink 12-16 oz of clean filtered water beforehand.
-Do it outside and connect with God and nature. (If nature permits)
-Take at least 10 deep breaths of fresh air. In through your nose, hold it for a few seconds, then push it out through your mouth.
-Get sunlight on as much of your body as you can.
-If possible do it with enough intensity to break a sweat. Give yourself 7-20 minutes.
Sweating is important but it also means you’ll need a shower afterward. The nice thing about rebounding is you can still get a benefit from it even if you don’t break a sweat. Try to get at least one sweaty rebounder workout per day. I do it first thing in the morning before I shower for the day. If you can’t do it outside, do it inside. Just do it!
My wife Micah even used rebounding workout dvd to lose her baby weight after Marin was born.
Not all rebounders are created equal.
The quality of the frame, springs and mat are extremely important. Cheap rebounders are harder on your joints and can cause injury, also they wear out quickly, and have no warranty.
I’ve used the ReboundAir Quarter-Fold Model (pictured above) since 2004 and I highly recommend it.
ReboundAir was founded by Al Carter, THE pioneer of rebound exercise.
In fact my mom even has his original book The Miracle of Rebound Exercise from 1979!
The ReboundAir is the only rebounder with a Lifetime All Parts Warranty.
They use them on The Biggest Loser campus and ReboundAir has been featured on CBS “The Doctors” television show twice. Cool right?
They make three models: the Standard rebounder, the Half-Fold, and the Quarter-Fold.
The Quarter-Fold model is really cool because it folds in half twice so I can store it under my bed and it’s easy to travel with. (I demonstrate how to fold and unfold it in the video)
If you order one over the phone please mention that you heard about it here. Thanks!
(((c)))

Health Nuts: Seeds And Nuts You Should Eat Every Day

Newsflash!
Nuts and seeds are super healthy and most of us aren’t eating enough of them.  They are a great natural source of vitamins, minerals, protein, fat, and fiber.  I’ve been eating a ton of nuts and seeds as part of my anti-cancer diet since 2004.
Depending on whose list you read, the number one healthiest nut is either the almond or the walnut, but I’m not going to rank them, as this is not really a competition.  The “healthiest nut” is the one with the nutrients your body needs most on a given day.  Of course no one knows which one that is.  So the best strategy is to eat a variety.

Here are the top healthiest nuts:

Almonds have as much calcium as milk, and contain magnesium, vitamin E, selenium and lots of fiber. They can lower cholesterol and help prevent cancer.
Walnuts are extremely good for your heart and brain, and contain ellagic acid a cancer-fighting antioxidant.
Pecans have tons of vitamins and minerals like Vitamins E and A, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, copper, phosphorus, potassium, manganese, B vitamins, and zinc.  And they help lower cholesterol.
Brazil Nuts are a good source of protein, copper, niacin, magnesium, fiber, vitamin E and selenium.
Cedar Nuts/Pine Nuts have Vitamins A, B, D, E, P and contain 70% of your body’s required amino acids.
Cashews are rich in minerals like copper, magnesium, zinc, iron and biotin.  They are actually a low-fat nut, and like olive oil, they have a high concentration of oleic acid, which is good for the ticker (your heart).  According to Dr. Andrew Saul, one big handful of cashews provides one to two thousand milligrams of tryptophan, which will work as well as prescription antidepressant Prozac.  
Note: Cashews are not recommended for cancer patients due to potential levels of fungus

Here are the top healthiest seeds:

Flax Seeds are definitely at the top of my list.  I take Barleans Cold Pressed Organic Flax Seed Oil every day because it is the best source of parent omega-3s and the phytochemical Lignan, a super anti-oxidant that helps fight cancer.  It also contains a lot of fiber and can reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. 
Sunflower seeds also help prevent heart disease and cancer with phytochemicals, folate, Vitamin E, selenium and copper.
Chia Seeds are incredibly healthy seeds rich in omega-3 oils, protein, anti-oxidants, calcium, and fiber. Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia!
Hemp Seeds are a certified superfood with cancer and heart disease prevention properties.  They are high in protein and fiber, with balanced omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.
Pumpkin Seeds are great for your immune system with lots of antioxidants (carotenoids), omega-3 fatty acids and zinc.
Sesame Seeds are a good source of calcium, magnesium, zinc, fiber, iron, B1 and phosphorus.  They can lower blood pressure, and protect against liver damage. Sesame seeds have also been linked to prevention of many diseases like arthritis, asthma, migraine headaches, menopause, osteoporosis, and may even reduce PMS symptoms.  (I don’t know much about that last one)
Tahini is a ground sesame seed paste that’s popular ingredient in Middle Eastern dishes we eat, like hummus.
Finally Apricot seeds (aka Apricot kernels), Apple seeds, and other bitter fruit seeds contain Amygdalin aka Vitamin B17 which has incredibly powerful anti-cancer properties.  There are many cases of people who cured their cancer with Apricot kernels alone!  The pharmaceutical Laetrile which is a concentrated form of Amygdalin has been used in cancer clinics outside the US for over 50 years.  I dedicated an entire post to Apricot Kernels HERE.
Do Nut Eat This (worst pun ever, i’m sorry)
The one nut I don’t really eat anymore is the peanut, which is technically a bean.  Here’s why:
Peanuts can contain a carcinogenic mold called aflatoxin, and they are notorious for being one of the most pesticide-contaminated crops.
We buy eat organic nut butters like Almond Butter and Sunflower Seed Butter instead of peanut butter.
(photo:chrisbeatcancer)
Embrace Your Inner Hippie
I like to go to the bulk section of Whole Foods (where the big plastic bins of nuts are) and buy a couple pounds of Raw Organic seeds and nuts. I take them home and mix them all together in my Super Trail Mix. 
Looking for a super healthy snack?  This is it.
Eat them straight out of the bag, throw some in a bowl for the family, or toss them on a salad. Either way, a couple handfuls of my Super Trail Mix every day will rock your body with super nutrients.  So go ahead and embrace your inner hippie, throw on a pair of birkenstocks with socks, dowse yourself in patchouli, and load up on some trail mix.  We keep a bowl out for everyone to snack on at home and a tupperware container in the car to snack on when I’m out and about.
(photo: chrisbeatcancer)
Notice I said “Raw Organic“.  That’s super important.  I don’t buy the fried, salted, roasted, honey-glazed, candied, or any other “special flavor” nuts.  Frying and roasting nuts converts the fats into an unhealthy form, and most seasonings are made from artificial flavors, chemicals, and preservatives, contain MSG, and are high in sodium. 
If you want to maximize the nutrients you get from nuts, soak them in distilled water overnight.  This helps neutralize enzyme inhibitors and phytic acid both of which affect digestion and absorption of the nutrients in seeds and nuts.  It can also help reduce the amount of pesticides on them if they are not organically grown.
Simple Soaking Directions: Place 4 cups of nuts in a bowl with enough distilled water to cover the nuts completely.  Add a tablespoon of celtic sea salt.  This helps the neutralize enzyme inhibitors.  Different seeds and nuts have different soaking times, but the easiest rule of thumb to remember is to let them soak 7 hours (overnight).  You many or may not like the taste of soggy nuts, so you’ll need to dehydrate them in a dehydrator or oven for 12-24 hours.  If you do it in the oven, keep the temperature under 150 degrees and shift them around on the pan occasionally.  You don’t want to roast the nuts, just dry them out.  Every oven is different so it might take some experimentation to get the ideal drying time figured out.  And because this is essentially a 24 hour process it makes sense to do several big batches at a time.  Afterward compare the flavor of the soaked and dried nuts versus the non-soaked nuts.  You might be surprised to find they taste better, depending on the nut and your taste.
One exception: Cashews should soak 6 hours or less and need to dry out quickly at 200-250 degrees or they can get funky.
The Excalibur Dehydrator is the one that all the health gurus use and recommend.
Here’s a shopping list you can copy, paste, and print out:
Almonds
Walnuts
Pecans
Brazil Nuts
Cedar Nuts
Cashews
Sunflower Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds
Almond, Cashew or Sunflower Seed Butter 

Tahini
The rest of the seeds I mentioned don’t work very well in trail mix because they are too small and all end up at the bottom.
One of my favorite snack bars is the NutivaHempseedBar.  It’s made with organic hemp, flax, sunflower, pumpkin seeds, and sweetened with honey.  It’s a super tasty way to get some super healthy seeds in your diet.
They also have a Flax & Raisin Bar, and our favorite: Flax, Hemp & Chocolate Bar.
Get yourself some here!
(((c)))

The Top 10 Anti-Cancer Vegetables

Photo by David Grunfeld

Photo by David Grunfeld
If you haven’t noticed, we are constantly bombarded with pleas from charities for cancer research money.
“Race for the Cure, Stand Up to Cancer, Buy Pink products, grow a Movember mustache….”
This is often accompanied by the message  that “we are running out of funding for cancer research”.  And of course this is a problem, because “without funding for more research, we will never find a cure”.
Cue the shots of bald women and children poisoned by chemo, accompanied by dramatic music. Then insert a high-profile celebrity to say, “The cure is just around the corner.
Together we can make cancer history. Please give today.”
Here’s the reality. The mega billion dollar pharmaceutical industry has plenty of money to fund research, they would just prefer that you fund it with your donations instead of theirs.
Real problem #1  They are running out of your money.
Real problem #2 They are only interested in medicines they can patent.
Real problem #3  Research on nutrition and natural therapies is ignored.
There are literally thousands of published peer-reviewed studies demonstrating that the 100,000+ phytonutrients in plants have the ability to prevent and reverse cancer.
But because the pharmaceutical industry can’t figure out how to extract these compounds, synthesize them, and patent them for profit, they are ignored.
Doctors can’t even use this published information or they risk losing their license.
But you can!
One of my favorite studies was published in Food Chemistry, January 2009 called,
“The antiproliferative and antioxidant activities of common vegetables: A comparative study”
The title is so boring I almost fell asleep typing it, but hold on, because the results are awesome.
Researchers studied the inhibitory (cancer-stopping) effects of 34 vegetable extracts
on 8 different tumor cell lines.
They basically just ran vegetables through a juicer and then dripped the extracted juice on different cancer cells to see what would happen. Here’s what they found…
The #1 most powerful anti-cancer food was Garlic.
Garlic stopped cancer growth COMPLETELY against these tumor cell lines:
Breast cancer, brain cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer,
childhood brain cancer, and stomach cancer.
Leeks were #1 against kidney cancer. Garlic was #2.
But not just garlic and leeks, almost all vegetables from the Allium and Cruciferousfamilies completely stopped growth in the various cancers tested. Here they are:
Allium vegetables: Garlic, Leeks, Yellow and Green Onions
Cruciferous vegetables: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cauliflower, Kale, Red cabbage and Curly Cabbage
Spinach and Beet Root also scored in the top ten against many of the cancers tested.
Honorable mentions: Asparagus, fiddlehead, green beans, radishes and rutabaga.
Poor Performers: Acorn Squash, Bok Choy, Boston Lettuce, Carrot, Endive, English Cucumber, Fennel Bulb, Jalapeño, Orange Sweet Pepper, Potato, Radicchio, Romaine lettuce, and Tomatoes.
Here is an excerpt from the paper’s abstract:
“The extracts from cruciferous vegetables as well as those from vegetables of the genus Allium inhibited the proliferation of all tested cancer cell lines whereas extracts from vegetables most commonly consumed in Western countries were much less effective. The antiproliferative effect of vegetables was specific to cells of cancerous origin and was found to be largely independent of their antioxidant properties. These results thus indicate that vegetables have very different inhibitory activities towards cancer cells and that the inclusion of cruciferous and Allium vegetables in the diet is essential for effective dietary-based chemopreventive strategies.”
Translation:
-Allium and cruciferous veggies stopped cancer growth.
-Commonly consumed vegetables did not work as well.
-The antioxidant content of veggies was not a key anti-cancer factor.
-Different vegetables work for different cancers.
-Allium and cruciferous veggies should be eaten to prevent cancer.
So the most commonly consumed vegetables in Western countries had very little effect on cancer cell growth. The top three (potatoes, lettuce and carrots) account for 60% of the vegetables we Westerners are eating. 32% of our vegetable intake is potatoes, and half of that is actually french fries. Nice.
Dark greens, cruciferous veggies and garlic account for less than 1% of our Western diet!
Hello?
An interesting note:  Radishes were shown to stop tumor growth by 95-100% for breast and stomach cancer, but had no effect and may have even increased tumor growth by 20-25% in pancreatic, brain, lung and kidney cancer. Definitely something to keep in mind.
You really need to look at the charts in the study to see which veggies worked best against which cancer.
Read the full study here  The charts are on page 3.
Now if you are familiar with my story you may be thinking, “Wait a minute Chris, didn’t you drink tons of carrot juice every day?”
Yes I did.  (More about that here)
Before you write off the “poor performers”
It’s important to keep in mind that this is a laboratory study showing only what a vegetable extract did to when applied directly to cancer cells. The study does not take into account the vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that indirectly support your body’s ability to detoxify and heal. For example, carrots are a great source of Vitamin A. Vitamin A supports your liver. Your liver is a critical component of your immune system because it detoxes your body. Cancer is a product of a toxic body, so detoxing your body is critical in healing cancer, and so on.
Having said all that, it makes sense to focus on eating tons of the veggies that were actually killing cancer in the lab.
Also this study confirms why what I did in 2004 worked.
I ate copious amounts of these cancer-fighting vegetables every day in my Giant Cancer-Fighting Salad, specifically spinach, kale, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, red cabbage, and garlic powder. I had no idea about leeks or else they would have been in there too.
And according to Dr. Richard Schulze’s recommendation, I ate several cloves of garlic per day. If garlic kills cancer, then I wanted to saturate my body with garlic. So I would just crush up the cloves and swallow them with a mouthful of water.
I also took Kyolic Garlic Extract.
And yes I reeked, but I lived to tell the tale.
(((c)))

The Fast Lane to Health: How to Detox

Staring at an empty plate is not a requirement of fasting

Just like an oil change for your car, fasting is essential periodic maintenance for your body. 
You’ve got to do it.
If you’re eating the Standard American Diet, full of processed food loaded with artificial ingredients; you’re putting toxins in your body faster than it can eliminate them. These unnatural chemical and mineral compounds are accumulating in all the tissues of your body, and have been for most of your life.
Over time these toxins accumulate inside you until there is a tipping point at which your body is so overloaded that essential systems and functions begin to break down.
This accumulation of toxins from processed food, more than any other source, is what contributes to disease.
This is why fasting was an important part of my anti-cancer regimen.
We all know food is the fuel for our bodies, but what most people don’t realize is that processed food is dirty fuel.
It is not “clean burning” and leaves toxic deposits, causing a lot of internal wear and tear over time.
Not only does your body convert food into energy, but it also uses approximately 1/3 of your energy to digest food.
Would you describe yourself as dependent on caffeine or sugar to get going or stay alert throughout the day?
If you said yes, you may be overeating for your metabolism; and if you’re consistently eating three or more “square” meals per day you may be suffering from a food-induced energy drain.
Ever felt the need to take a nap after a big meal?  That’s what I’m talking about. You may actually be overeating.
I discovered that eating breakfast really sapped my morning energy so I stopped doing it.  Most mornings I just drink a glass of water or Veggie Juiceusuallyeat some fruit around 10 am.  I’ll have a sandwich or Giant Salad for lunch; a Smoothie or fruit for an afternoon snack; and another Giant Salad with some healthy carbs like quinoa, organic brown rice, Manna Bread, or a sweet potato for dinner.
Sometimes with dinner I eat clean organic meat: grass fed beef, wild caught fish, or free-range chicken.  I do eat other stuff too, but that’s in another post.
Anyway, back to fasting…
When you fast, digestion stops and your body basically “switches modes” from digestion mode to house cleaning mode; redirecting energy to where it is needed most.
Imagine worker cells in your body saying “Well, no food to process today, let’s see what needs repair around here.”  That’s essentially what happens.   Instead of focusing energy on digestion, your body begins repairing damaged organs and tissues; breaking down and eliminate toxic deposits; and “resetting” internal processes that are functioning poorly like your metabolism, adrenals, hormones, brain chemistry, etc.
Fasting happens every night when you sleep. Your body focuses on repair, regeneration, and detoxification. That’s why the next morning when you eat, it’s called “Break-Fast”.  Not eating for several days allows this process to continue uninterrupted; compounding the healing benefits.
One way you can improve your nightly regenerative sleep is to eat an early dinner before 7pm and eat nothing else all night until mid-morning or lunchtimethe following day. (Drinking veggie juice or caffeine free herbal tea before bed is fine.)  This gives your body 12-16 hours per day to repair itself.
The Day of Rest:  God instituted one day per week as a day of rest.  Which most of us recognize as Sunday.  Whether it’s sunday or not, I strongly recommend you have one day per week where you do nothing. Literally nothing.  We go to church on Sunday morning eat lunch and then take naps and relax for the rest of the day. Doing nothing may be hard for some who really enjoy working, but your body and brain need a break. The less physical energy you exert, the more energy your body has to repair itself.  Sunday is also a perfect day to fast while you rest, maximizing your body’s regenerative capability. If you eat an early dinner Saturday night and don’t eat again until Monday lunch, that’s a 40 hour fast!  Very doable.
Something else that happens when you fast is that you start burning stored fat for energy (ketosis), so you should experience some weight loss.  That’s one thing most people won’t complain about.  And the more fat you have, the longer you can go without food.
Expect to have low energy during a fast, not because you aren’t eating, but because your body has switched gears and is redirecting all available energy toward repairing itself.  The less energy you consume, the more your body has to use in the healing process.
When you begin to detox, large quantities of toxins and dead bacteria are released into your body faster than it can get them out.  This flood of toxins is going to make you feel bad, but only temporarily.
This is commonly referred to as the 
Healing Crisis or the Herxheimer Reaction.
So expect to feel worse before you feel better. Your body is trying to push toxins out anyway it can: in your sweat, mucus, pee, and poop. You will feel tired and weak and may experience headaches, nausea, irritability, and in severe cases vomiting, upset stomach, pimples, and flu-like symptoms.
The more toxic you are, the worse you’ll feel, but it’s a good thing. Don’t quit! You’ve got to be determined to power through. The first fews days are the hardest, but after that your energy will return and you’ll feel amazing.
Consider taking a week off, or a long weekend with no commitments on the calendar to start your fast.
This is a time when it’s ok to be selfish. You are working on you.
Just focus on relaxing and lounge around while your body does its thing.
Pray and meditate on healing verses from scripture. Watch some funny movies. Sleep alot.
Some complementary activities that will assist in the detox process are massage therapy followed by a mineral bath; visits to a sauna; rebounding; and frequent enemas or colonics to clean out toxins trapped in your colon. Yeah it’s gross, but if you don’t do it, the toxins can end up recirculating in your body, which makes you feel worse and limits the effectiveness of the fast. Sweating helps your body detox faster.
Two basic liquid fasts are water fasts and juice fasts.
A straight water fast is the most powerful health changing action you can take.  I’ve heard stories of people who have beaten stage 4 cancer with a 40 day water fast.
Most of us have no idea what it feels like to go even one day without food.  Water fasting will give you a whole new perspective on the poor and starving people in the world.  But I should note that you’ll only really experience psychological food-additicion hunger and that will only be for a few days. Your stomach will shrink and your hunger will subside. 
Juice Fasting with Veggie Juice is much easier as the juice helps curb your appetite and gives you energy.  I recommend you do this first before attempting a water fast.
“How long should I fast?”4-7 days is common. Some folks go for several weeks, even as long as 90 days. This may sound funny but it’s true. The fatter you are, the longer you can go without food. Fat is the way your body stores energy, which is how our ancestors survived when food was scarce.
I have a high metabolism and very low body fat so I can’t fast for more than 7-10 days.
Detoxing happens in phases: You’ll feel lousy the first few days, then you’ll feel great for a few days, then you may feel lousy again for a day, then great again, and so on.
Fasting is not Starvation
As you fast, your body will break down fats and non-essential tissues first to use for energy.
If you were stranded in a cabin in the winter with no firewood, naturally you would burn the least important items first like chairs, tables etc. You aren’t going to throw your clothes and food on the fire. Your body is the same way. It will burn through what it identifies as the least essential tissue first, like fat, cysts, and tumors. This will happen first before your body experiences true starvation, which is the break down of vital organs and tissue.
Make sure that when you break a fast it is gradual with very small portions of fruit or veggies.  Don’t go pig out. 
Your shrunken stomach will not appreciate it.
Big DisclaimerPlease do not attempt a multi-day fast without reading a book on the subject first.
They will go into a lot more detail than I have here.

And your fast should also be done under medical supervision.  If you take medications, you doctor needs to know what you’re doing.
Check out The Ultimate Organic Master Cleanse Kit . It comes complete with everything you need for a 10 day fast, including the book.
Additional Recommended Reading:
The Miracle of Fasting by Paul Bragg
God’s Chosen Fast by Arthur Wallis

Kicking the Sacred Cow: Does Milk Really Do Your Body Good?

In case you hadn’t noticed, the dairy industry is spending millions of dollars every year to convince you that you need to drink milk, like superman here.
When I was a kid their slogan was, “Milk, it does a body good,” and since 1993 they’ve paid hundreds of celebrities to pose with a “milk mustache” (made of ice cream) for the “Got Milk?” ads.
In fact, “Got Milk?” has been such a legendary and successful ad campaign, there are evenbooks about it.
So while the milk industry is telling us that milk is good for us, scientific research has shown the opposite to be true.  The media isn’t talking about it because there are too many advertising dollars at stake.
The problems with processed milk startat the commercial dairy operations. Although many of them are still called farms, I can assure you there are no milk maids sitting on wooden stools, milking the cows by hand each morning.  These places are not farms, they are factories.
Depending on where you go, this is what you’ll see:  A massive facility filled with hundreds to thousands of Holstein cows confined to small pens; hooked up to milking machines 10 months a year. They are fed unnatural diets of grain, soy, and scrap feed.  They use Holstein cows because they produce the most milk.
Mutant Milk
These cows are injected with growth hormones and antibiotics.  The most controversial one is rBGH aka recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone sold under the brand namePosilac. It’s a genetically-engineered hormone introduced by Monsanto in 1995 that increases milk production in cows by about 20%. rBGH also increases Insulin Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) in cow’s milk.  Elevated levels of IGF-1 can promote cancer in humans, specifically prostate, breast, and colon cancer along with risk of sterility, infertility, birth defects, and immunological derangements.
rBGH has been banned in All 25 European Union Countries, Canada, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.
A European Commission report stated that “Avoidance of rBGH dairy products in favor of natural products would be the most practical & immediate dietary intervention to… (achieve) the goal of preventing cancer.”
In addition, udder infections and mastitis are common in over-milked rBGH cows which adds pus and bacteria into the milk along with the antibiotics and hormones given to the cows.
Note: Pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly bought the patent from Monsanto in 2008 and is now the sole manufacturer of rGBH.
Commercial dairy cows must be impregnated every year to keep them producing milk, but they are not allowed to nurse.  The calves are taken away from their mothers immediately after birth.
These commercial dairy operations literally suck the life out of their cows in 3-4 years, compared that to a normal pasture fed cow that can live up to 25 years.
Seeing the horrible treatment of cows in a commercial dairy firsthand is enough for many people to stop drinking this kind of milk.   But even if you don’t care about cows, you need to understand that unhealthy mistreated cows cannot produce healthy milk; and that affects you.
All this is definitely a problem, but it doesn’t stop there. Once extracted from the cow, the nutritional value of milk is hijacked by pasteurization and homogenization.
Pasteurization is the process where the milk is heated to “sanitize” it and increase shelf life.  Standard pasteurization involves heating the milk a to 161 degrees fahrenheit.  Ultra-Pasteurization (UHP) heats the milk to 275 degrees fahrenheit destroying 99.99 percent of living organisms in the milk, so it can be actually stored unrefrigerated for 6-9 months.
Both processes dramatically change the composition of milk.  Even standard pasteurization decimates the immune supporting digestive enzymes, beneficial bacteria, and nutrients like vitamins C, B6, and B12. It makes the calcium and other minerals insoluble and very difficult for your body to absorb; alters the proteins, and makes lactose harder to digest.
Why do they do it?
The problem is not that the milk coming out of the cow is bad. Milk straight out of the cow is perfectly structured to nourish a growing calf.  The problem is the bacteria and pathogensthat breed in large milking operations.  When these large operations began to spring up, there was no health regulation. They were disgusting, unsanitary, disease ridden places and they were unknowingly selling dirty milk.  So it’s no surprise that people were getting sick and dying.
Homogenization
If you were to go milk a cow and then put that milk in the fridge, the next day you would see that the fat rises in fresh milk and a layer of cream forms at the top.  That doesn’t happen anymore thanks to a process called homogenization, which began in the 1920′s.
Homogenization is forcing milk through a tiny filter at high pressure, between 2000-3000 lbs per square inch.  This process breaks up the fat into tiny particles that remain suspended in the milk without rising to the top; something that would never happen in nature.
When these fat particles are broken up they are able to pass through your intestinal walls directly into your bloodstream along with proteins, hormones, and enzymes that would normally be broken down in digestion.
One noteworthy enzyme is Xanthine Oxidase (XO).  XO attaches itself to the tiny fat particles and hitches a ride into your bloodstream.  Once there, it  attacks the interior walls of your arteries causing your body to produce cholesterol to protect itself.  This is a recipe for hardened and blocked arteries down the road.
Finally processed milk is highly acidic, mucus forming, and has been linked to a host of health problems. The proteins alone in processed milk have been linked to over 60 different diseases including Allergies, Autism, Cancer, Crohn’s Disease, Arthritis, and SIDS.
So what’s the solution?
Raw Milk
Raw Milk is one of nature’s perfect foods designed to nourish a calf, goat, or baby human when it comes out of their mother.
So am I an advocate of adults drinking human breast milk?
No. Come on, that’s beyond icky. 

If you haven’t figured it out already, pasteurization and homogenization do not make milk better, they make it worse.  These processes destroy its nutritional value.
And because raw milk producers don’t pasteurize, the standard of cleanliness for them is much higher than conventional milk producers.  So yes raw milk from a conscientious producer is safe. We buy and drink raw milk and have never gotten sick from it.
Did you just say something about a goat?
Yes!  Goat’s milk is the healthiest milk you can drink because its composition is very similar to human breast milk.  And compared to cows milk it has more vitamin A and easier to digest. Still seem weird?  You may surprised to know that over two-thirds of milk consumed on planet earth comes from goats.  
There’s even a goat’s milk protein powder I buy called 
Goatein!
Goatein™  by Garden of Life

Scientific Research
In his book Pottenger’s Cats, Dr. Francis M. Pottenger, Jr. chronicled his research on more than 900 cats over a 10 year period and found that diets containing raw milk and raw meat produced optimal health:  good bone structure, straight teeth, shiny fur, no parasites or disease, reproductive ease, and gentle temperament.  Conversely, a diet of cooked meat and pasteurized milk resulted in severe physical degeneration.  The cats on the cooked food diet died out completely by the fourth generation while the raw food cats continued to thrive.
The changes Pottenger observed in cats on cooked diets paralleled the human degeneration that Dr. Weston Price found in his groundbreaking study on the deteriorating health of indigenous tribes that had abandoned their traditional diets for modern processed food.
This is why I stopped drinking processed milk in 2004.
Vegan opponents of milk love to cite “The China Study” which claims that milk is harmful to health and that casein (milk protein) has been linked to cancer. What they fail to mention is that every negative study on milk is using processed milk, not raw milk. And studies showing that casein causes cancer in lab rats are using isolated casein, not raw milk. Isolated casein is completely unnatural! Feed a living organism enough of something unnatural and it will eventually get sick. It’s no wonder the rats are getting cancer. 
The Biblical Perspective
You may recall that in the Old Testament book of Exodus, God delivered the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and led them to “The Promised Land”, which was a fertile land described by God five times as “a land flowing with milk and honey”.  That’s because milk and honey were good things! And I think it’s pretty safe to assume they were drinking raw milk. (References: Exodus chapters 3 and 33, Ezekiel 20). Incidentally, “the land of milk and honey” is mentioned another 14 times in the Bible by people describing the promised land.
Here’s a quick recap: (P&H= Pasteurized and Homogenized)
Commercial Dairy P&H Cow’s Milk = Terrible
Organic Hormone-Free P&H Cow’s Milk = Less bad, still not good.
Organic Pasteurized, Non-Homogenized Cow’s Milk = slightly better, some grocery stores have this.
Pasture-fed Organic Raw Cow’s Milk =  Great for calves, great for you.
Pasture-fed Organic Raw Goat’s Milk = Argueably the healthiest milk you can drink, but hardest to find.
The best sources of raw milk from are local dairy farms with pasture fed cows and goats that are happy and live long lives.  Most local dairies will give you a tour of their farm and facilities if you ask.  I even know folks that have bought their own goats just for the milk.
Note:  The sale of raw milk for human consumption is illegal in some states like Tennessee.  BOOOO!
However, many farms have a “herd share” program, which allows you to buy a tiny share of ownership in the livestock, usually for a very small fee.  As an owner, you have the right to purchase raw milk from the dairy.
There is growing demand for legalized raw milk across the country and outdated laws are being rewritten thanks to the work of the Weston Price Foundation.
To find a local raw milk dairy near you, visit realmilk.com. or localharvest.org
Your local farmers market is another place to check if you don’t find a local raw dairy listed on those sites.
For my Memphis area friends there is a local raw milk dairy you should definitely check out calledEvergreen Farm.  They have Jersey and Guernsey cows on their farm. Jersey and Guernsey cows produce less milk than Holsteins, but the flavor is incredible.
That’s one of their bottles on my kitchen table.They bring fresh raw milk, butter, eggs, and kefir to the Memphis Farmers Market Downtown and Botanic Garden Farmers Markets every week in the spring summer, and fall.  In the winter I meet them at one of several delivery drop points around town.
Super Sad Addendum 1: Evergreen Farm closed April 9th 2011 due to pressure from the TN Agriculture Dept.  Here’s their statement:
“The TN Ag Dept has tried in every way possible, including threatening local farmers markets that they will pull their funding if we sell our products there.
We believe we have been targeted by the TN Ag Department because our raw milk and raw milk products were handled in a manner that exceeded Grade A Dairy standards. Our threat was that we could produce a better, healthier, unadulterated, fresher product in a healthier container than our local pasteurized dairy providers.
We will still have raw milk for ourselves, but you NEED to fight for your right to eat anything you choose. Don’t let your state and federal governments make decisions about your food choices. The decisions they make are NOT in your best interest.”
😦
Happy/Sad Addendum 2:  After a few months we found another raw milk source!
But for my Memphis friends I should note that this is a woman with three cows. She supplies milk to a dozen families or so and she barely had enough extra for us.  So it’s not someone I can refer you to.  But trust me if you ask around you’ll find some.
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