Coconut Oil Giveaway and Recipes!

I’ve sent people to Mountain Rose Herbs for their extra virgin, cold-pressed coconut oil, for years. I’ve never had a complaint, because their product is fabulous, and we’ve gotten tons of testimonials about skin conditions clearing and other exciting benefits of beginning to use this lauric acid-rich, medium chain fatty acid (missing in most people’s diet). When I began using coconut oil years ago, my winter-time cold hands and feet disappeared, and I now enjoy good circulation.

I use coconut oil generously on my skin every day. I run 1/3 cup through my hair (it’s long and thick—you may need less) sometimes before I shower, to help deal with the fact that I color it, and blonde out of a bottle is brutal on hair.

I also use coconut oil exclusively in baking, and sometimes in sauteeing. Lots of recipes in Ch. 4 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods, and other places like Ch. 11.

I’ve blogged about it in the past, and you can search on that topic on this blog.

I asked Mountain Rose Herbs for their favorite recipes, and here they are, enjoy!

Julie’s Amazing Maca Bars (modified by Robyn)

Maca, the ancient Peruvian herb, is a member of the Brassicaceae family, which includes turnips and radishes. It grows at high elevations of 12,000 feet and higher! Used as early as 1600 BC in Peru, the traditional use is for mental acuity, physical vitality, endurance, and stamina.

Another well-known use is as an aphrodisiac tonic that enhances sexual desire, performance, and fertility in men, women, and animals. It’s a highly nutritious food too. It contains: carbohydrates, proteins, calcium, fiber, lipids, iodine and anticancer compounds (similar to broccoli and cabbage). The nutrition alone can have a positive effect on people who are overworked, overstressed, and nutritionally unfulfilled.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup raw local honey (great for preventing seasonal allergies)
  • ½ cup organic unrefined coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp. chia seed soaked 20+ minutes in 6 Tbsp. water
  • ½ cup to 1 cup wheat-free flour or arrowroot powder
  • 1 pinch Himalayan Pink Salt
  • ½ cup organic maca Powder
  • 1 cup organic oats
  • 1 cup organic nuts (your choice)

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together. Bake at 325 to 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes in a greased  9×12 glass pan. Allow to cool, cut into squares, and enjoy!

Julie DeBord’s Bio:

Julie DeBord oversees the extraordinarily difficult task of managing the production and packaging of nearly all the products Mountain Rose Herbs has to offer! In addition to this, she oversees our tea and spice formulating and created many of our favorites including Herbal Coffee and Firefly Chai.

Erin’s Coconut Kettle Corn (modified by Robyn)

This healthier version of the classic kettle corn recipe will delight any sweet or salty craving. Virgin coconut oil adds a satisfying richness while a touch of sugar coats each kernel with a caramelized glaze. So good, you won’t miss the butter! Fun to make around the campfire after a day by the river or on the stovetop at home, this popcorn is an absolute crowd-pleaser.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup organic virgin coconut oil
  • ½ cup organic popping corn kernels
  • 1 tbsp organic, raw coconut sugar
  • fine sea salt to taste

Directions:

Melt the coconut oil over medium-high heat in a large stock pot. Add the kernels and cover the pot with a lid. Be sure to shake the pot continuously over the flame to avoid burning. When the first kernel pops, add the sugar and cover the pot. Continue to shake the covered pot vigorously over the flame while the kernels pop. This will happen quickly! Once the popping slows down, remove from heat and keep covered until you no longer hear popping. Transfer your popcorn to a serving bowl and sprinkle with salt to your liking. Munch and enjoy!

Erin McIntosh’s Bio:

Erin McIntosh is the Communications Manager at Mountain Rose Herbs and a graduate of the Columbines School of Botanical Studies. She spends her days photographing flowers, concocting herbal treats, and wildcrafting plants in the magnificent Oregon Cascades. www.mountainroseblog.com

Comments from another dentist, Kristi……part 7 of 7

A reader and dentist, Kristi, shared these observations after my root canal post. I have paraphrased some of her comments for length:

“ I have much respect for Robyn and her goals of sharing important life saving information with all of you. Her willingness to stand up for what she believes in is admirable. I would mention a word of caution though about jumping on bandwagon before you’ve done your own due diligence as there are always consequences for the decisions we make.

I always use dental dams and highly recommend you not use dentists who don’t put dental dams in place for root canals and other procedures.

As for amalgam, indeed there are gases that are given off from amalgam fillings; however, it is very minute and your exposure to mercury from air pollution, car exhaust, among other things, particularly if you are big fish eaters is much MUCH greater than what is given off from metal fillings. In fact, the greatest exposure to mercury when it comes to amalgam fillings is in the process of putting them in OR TAKING THEM OUT for all of you considering this procedure.

Trust me, dentists LOVE doing composite (plastic) fillings and usually are more than happy to do this if you insist. You know why? Because they tend to not last as long as amalgam fillings (often replacing in the range of 5 or so years) as compared to metal which many times last 20 plus) and because they can charge you more to put them in. (They are more technique sensitive, take longer to put in and thus they can charge more). Just know there are pros and cons to both. Just as there are some studies that show this leakage of gas, there are many more studies that show that the exposure is VERY minimal in comparison to other routine day to day practices. Especially with today’s techniques of placement.  Unless you are planning to make a radical lifestyle change you will not notice a difference as you are unfortunately exposed in so many other ways where with much higher loads than a filling would give off. Also for interest sake, there are studies that show blood levels of mercury being the same for people who have never had a metal filling before and those who have a mouth full of them.

Now, am I saying that I would put amalgam in my own children’s mouths? No, I plan on never doing that but I also plan on doing everything I can to prevent them from getting a cavity in the first place and that is the reason I love the things that Robyn is teaching about whole food and healthy eating because I believe this is the first step in prevention.

Which brings me to the topic of root canal therapy. Before you start walking into your dentist and refusing root canal treatment, you need to understand why it is done and what the alternative is.

Root canal treatment is done (MOST TIMES) because a person has a cavity that has gone so deep that it has eventually gone into the nerve of the tooth. It takes a lot to get to this point and is usually because someone has neglected to see a dentist sooner to deal with the cavity before it got too big. And then we must look at why that person got a cavity in the first place? In MOST cases it’s because they don’t take proper care of them, they have a poor diet and perhaps at no fault of their own, were never taught how.

So a root canal is a dentist’s last attempt basically to save a tooth that in most cases has not been properly taken care of in the first place. Unfortunately the alternative to root canal therapy is extraction. For those of you who have had root canal therapy done, are you now considering pulling all those teeth? Do you think that you would be better off having NO teeth? Do you think that your standard of living would go up having no teeth to chew with and trying to eat a plant based diet? Trust me, dentures are not a bed of roses. If you decide that you don’t want dentures but that you would rather have implants placed (titanium posts drilled in your jaw bone with a fake tooth built on top)? Are you prepared to pay $3k to $5k (depending on the dentist) PER TOOTH to have each of these teeth replaced? And that entirely depends on whether you are even a candidate for implant placement in the first place. Do you recognize that as you start losing teeth there is a tendency for things to break down more rapidly and that you can start having more jaw joint issues? There are a lot of other consequences to pulling teeth.

About those studies, I will not dispute their validity; however, I think it’s very difficult to determine that root canals are the cause of cancer in those cases. I think there are way too many other factors.

Consider for example the fact that generally speaking those who have need for a lot of root canal therapy, usually have had in the past or do have a poor diet and could that have not been the possible cause of the cancer? I’m curious how many of those people were smokers, or ate high meat diets, or highly processed diets…I just think there are much bigger fish to fry here. If you compared the number of people out there with root canals who have never had cancer, I don’t know how convincing that material would be.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that one must consider the alternatives. Yes having fillings and root canal treatment is unfortunately a compromise and it would be better if we never had to do them, but it is what it is and the alternative is not any better.

I would agree that most dentists don’t do a very good job of promoting prevention and that is what this really comes down to: Being educated on how to prevent cavities and the need for root canal treatment in the first place.

A few of my suggestions are as follows:

-Make sure you are brushing at least in the morning after breakfast and at night before you go to bed.

-Floss at least once a day (preferably at night)

-Do not put your baby to bed with a bottle of milk or juice or anything but water (I’ve pulled enough teeth on 1 and 2 year olds to know this is important). Breast feeding, that is a different story but you still must wipe out their mouths as there is still sugar in breast milk and they can still get cavities from it.

-Definitely try to have a diet that is whole foods based. Eating more of what Robyn promotes and less of what she doesn’t will definitely steer you in the right direction.

-Have regular checkups to the dentist so that if you do get a cavity you can catch it while it’s small and before it turns into root canal therapy.

-A couple of cautions about a whole foods diet is that if you like to eat dried fruit such as raisins, you are still at risk of decay because these chewy sticky foods are very good at sticking in the grooves of teeth as well as between them and if you don’t get it cleaned out, bacteria will break it down into simple sugars and cause cavities. So brush brush brush.

-If you are a big vegetable and fruit juicer, be careful, drink it in one sitting and don’t sip it all day long. Fruit juice especially is still sugar and if you are bathing your teeth in it all day long, you are much more likely to get cavities.

-Also watch the amount of acid intake. Vinegars, lemon and lime juice, they all have acid and can break down & weaken tooth structure rapidly. So be cautious, rinse with water, and brush about 30 or so minutes after.

-Please help your children brush their teeth as they cannot do it on their own. Until they can hand write their name legibly or tie their own shoe or maybe even longer, they literally do not have the manual dexterity to get everywhere so you need to help them…and don’t forget to floss their teeth too ?

Robyn’s response: Thanks to Dr. Kristy for sharing her thoughts, especially these suggestions. I would encourage more dentists reading this to seek out additional training to practice biologically. You have three different organizations accrediting or promoting holistic practices that deeply respect the human body and which are not afraid to question modern practices that are harmful to the human organism in general.

Dentists cold-mix mercury with other metals to make amalgam fillings in the office. The resulting mixture is neither chemically stable, nor biologically inert. It’s an oft-repeated but untrue statement that fish and pollution are higher sources of mercury, and that the amount offgassing in your mouth is “tiny.” The EPA stated in a report to Congress in 1997 that the highest body burden of inorganic mercury comes from dental amalgam fillings, and the report shows that dental exposure totals more than from food, including, fish, and water.

The ADA is far too invested in a few specific practices. It spends far too many resources defending harm and high risk. It’s time to support holistic dentists, and call more attention to alternatives in dental practice so that they gain more traction if they are effective.

In Utah, they are Dr. Wall in Bountiful (Dr. Ulm’s wife told me he is fantastic), Dr. Ulm in Lindon, Dr. Bruce Pyper in SLC, and Dr. Robertson in Spanish Fork. Thank you to GSG readers who have pointed me to these dentists.

(To access the other posts in this series, Click Here.)

Should I shut the heck up about all things not green smoothie?…..Part 6 of 7

About Dr. L telling me I should not talk about toxic dental practices and stick to whole foods topics only?

That is precisely the reason I have a blog in the first place.

I don’t want my readers to be as ignorant as I was when I was 27 years old and allowing doctors to tell me to feed my little boy spoonfuls of liquid steroids. I had dentists wanting to fill holes in his teeth with mercury as he got older (luckily, I never allowed that in any of my children). I’m livid that a dentist sent me home with little blue fluoride pills to feed my baby, not giving me the very real “other side” to the recommendation to have him eat sodium fluoride!

(Fortunately, in the case of the little blue pills, they sat there and expired during the two years after filling the prescription—I felt guilty every time I saw them, but I could not make myself feed them to my little boy. And fortunately, I knew enough that no child of mine has ever had an amalgam filling.)

I don’t have any interest in denigrating any profession.  Certainly not dentists. I have had email correspondences with Dr. L since he attended a class I taught two years ago, and I know him to be a thoughtful, purposeful, open-minded vegetarian athlete who influences his patients for good.

However, I hope more dentists self-educate to offer other options and educate their patients against toxic practices. I’m sure it would be scary to have many practices that underpin your livelihood called into question—dentists carry debt on expensive equipment to perform these procedures and use these materials. But I’m not the researchers who have documented valid, massive concerns for the public health. I’m just one person waving a red flag towards it.

But I’m fierce that since I am blessed with an audience, I hope for my readers to start YOUNGER THAN I DID—or at any point!—with knowledge about controversies regarding their health. That way they won’t unwittingly allow unnecessary root canals in their mouth, as I did.

I hope my readers learn to QUESTION AUTHORITY. I don’t mean REJECT all authority across the board. I mean make your own decisions, do your own thinking, use your intuition. Study an issue well before doing something like fossilizing a dead tooth, or feeding your baby little blue pills of a known poison, or injecting your child with, well, anything. Expect that major industries—all of them—have an agenda. That agenda is often in conflict with the public health.

Don’t believe everything you read on the internet. Learn to be a savvy consumer of information so you know what’s more likely to be true, and less likely. (In the intro to 12 Steps to Whole Foods, I write about evaluating research.)

I will not go silent on subjects where I think we are asleep at the wheel.

 

I may not be an “expert,” as Dr. L wanted me to know. But I am a HUGE FAN of parents becoming educated about the chemicals they feed their little ones. We should become layperson experts as much as possible—these issues have massive implications.

And while I believe dentists are good people trying to help us (Dr. L states that I am criticizing dentists), they do not always understand the implications of our drinking and eating synthetic fluoride.

If that’s the criticism—that I shouldn’t blog about dental issues because I’m not qualified—well, then, I’m not an expert on whole foods either. He didn’t like the quotes I used by a chemist, and he dismissed an entire book on the fluoride travesty by a journalist, because the journalist wrote a book for money so clearly he fabricated a fake controversy.

Adding fluoride to water is forced medication, and it’s not a fake controversy. It’s a real controversy for good reasons. Even if I accept Dr. L’s belief that children have fewer cavities if they drink fluoride or take fluoride pills, he offers no evidence that it’s safe for other organs and systems, to ingest it regularly. That’s because there IS no evidence of its safety. There is plenty of cause for concern and many studies documenting how dangerous it is.

If you feel that my blog should be limited to non-controversial topics related to whole foods only, perhaps you can just skip any posts on other topics? I’m a renegade, and this is a counter-culture blog. It just is.

If I’m blogging 5 times a week, for nearly 5 years now…..I don’t want to have limitations like that. I want to talk about what’s on my mind. Eating whole foods and giving the S.A.D. the boot will always be my favorite topic, though, so come back soon for more on that!

Tomorrow, I will post some interesting comments from a dentist who wrote in with her opinion on my comments on amalgam fillings and root canals.

(To access the other posts in this series, Click Here.)

Should I shut the heck up about all things not green smoothie?…..part 5 of 7

I started using a Sonic toothbrush a few years ago. It’s incredible! I had quite a few cavities as a kid, but I haven’t had any, since using the Sonic. It vibrates the plaque off your teeth. My gums were receding from my scrubbing my teeth too hard, and with the Sonic, I have stopped eroding my gums. Moreover, my dentist tells me when I go in for cleanings every six months, “There’s no plaque on your teeth—there’s nothing to clean here.”

You can get a Sonic toothbrush at Costco or any store. It’s not cheap, $50 for the electrical unit or something like that? But so worth it. I bought one for each of my kids a few years ago for Christmas.

One dentist reader, Dr. L, had written me last year asking why I talk about fluoride being a poison and a byproduct of a number of industrial processes. That was news to him. After studying the issue, and following my recent blog series on toxic dental practices, he wrote me a lengthy report, which I read.

Dr. L wrote me an email saying one of my readers came to him about increased dental decay. His own dentist had told him green smoothies were causing it. LOL!

(And so he should eat, what? More Junior Mints instead of kale and berries? Wait, how about hormone-soaked animal flesh? Dr. L discovered the man had stopped using fluoride. Of course I stopped using fluoride many years ago too…..and QUIT getting cavities. Could be my Sonic toothbrush though!)

Dr. L’s defense centers on fluoride treatment being just a little extra of a necessary minerals. Kind of like table salt—it’s fine, in moderation, is his reasoning.

Actually, refined table salt is far more toxic than sugar—I need to talk about that more. The Gerson therapy has cured thousands of patients of cancer for 80 years, with lots of raw vegetable juices and completely, vigorously eliminating all sodium from the diet. This pushes sodium out of cells, and potassium into the cells, which allows the body to metabolize cancerous cells.

Just because lots of people are eating refined salt doesn’t mean it’s fine in moderation. I have quite a few people testing the diet / recipes / shopping lists in the Detox Manual I’ve been working on for 8 months.

Every single one of us has lost 2-5 lbs. in the first day or two, and 5 lbs or more in the first 5 days. That’s partly because the diet is completely sodium free. (It’s also high bulk, so you don’t have to be hungry at all, and low calorie.) When you give your body a break from eating sodium chloride (NaCl, table salt), you body sheds water. It’s not that your body is dehydrating and you will just drink that water back—it’s that your inflamed cells are releasing fluids and waste products trapped there. And those cells can then heal and rebuild!

Dr. L implies that what is in your water supply is just the natural fluoride that occurs in a mountain spring in trace amounts. But no, it’s a chemical synthetic, a compound with sodium bound to another element, and it’s added in far greater amounts than anyone would encounter in spring water. That’s why Dr. Ulm, Dr. Wall, and many others have fluoride-free practices. More than 90 percent of U.S. fluoridating communities now use inexpensive silicofluorides, because it’s cheap—a compound never tested by the FDA but which was recently shown to elevate lead levels in children.

I was told by Dr. L, at the end of his email, that he wishes I would stick to talking ONLY about whole foods, in my blog. The implication, to me, was: “Don’t trouble yourself with this; you don’t know what you’re talking about. Just trust us, the experts.”

Tomorrow I’m going to talk about how I feel about that.

(To access the other posts in this series, Click Here.)

On dental sealants…..by a biological dentist….part 4 of 7

Several of you have asked about the safety and efficacy of sealants recommended to you by your dentist. Reader Dr. John Augspurger, a biological dentist in Colorado Springs, weighs in with this response:

Robyn,

I am a biological dentist practicing this way for 17 of my 22 years as a dentist. The first 5 years of my career I was a traditional dentist, and I believe in many ways traditional dentistry is harmful.

On the subject of sealants…… I am a fan of the philosophy, but not a fan of the procedure or the material. Here’s why:

First, sealants are typically done in the busy office NOT by the dentist, but by the assistant. That means the tooth cannot be drilled (or cleaned out properly) before the sealant is placed. That means the sealant will be placed over a small amount of decay and or stain down in the groove of the tooth. It is like trying to paint over a metal object covered in rust. The paint will not stick, or if it does, it won’t last very long. And even worse, when the sealant becomes unbonded anywhere along it’s margin, then underneath you have a world of problems, and decay will progress rapidly.

The rate of decay at that point will be a function of how mineralized, or how “hard” the tooth is. There is no way to clean in there, or get fresh saliva in there to buffer the newly formed, highly acidic environment. But if a dentist were to go in there and thoroughly clean out the decay, debris, or stain, then at that point it is technically considered a filling. You have to pay more and it takes more time, but it is absolutely worth it!!

Secondly, I do not like the sealant material, and here’s why. It contains high levels of BPA which means it is a plastic toxin. In fact all plastic materials in dentistry have BPA, but sealants are the worst. Filling material is better. And filling material is MUCH stronger, which is the other reason why I do not like sealants.

I have not placed a sealant on anyone in over 17 years for these reasons. But I like the idea of sealing any cavity-prone area of the tooth with a material that is least toxic and will last for as long as possible.

The only way to know for sure is if you have this conversation with your dentist, and be adamant about how well the decay is removed FIRST before any filling material is placed, and that the filling be placed in a non-contaminated environment. The use of rubber dams really help with that. It takes more time, and thus costs more, but it is absolutely worth it!!

For more information, your readers can go to my web site http://www.biodentist.com. Keep up the great work you are doing on helping your readers make more informed dental decisions!

Yours for Better Health,

Dr. John Augspurger

Dr. Augspurger, many thanks for these comments. I will have more of the reaction from other dentists, in the rest of this series.

(To access the other posts in this series, Click Here.)

Mortality, goodbye to my grampa, and taking youth for granted

Last weekend my grampa was in a hospital with pneumonia, his blood pressure 70/30 and they were unable to get an IV needle in him. We talk every day, my aunt or my dad, and I, about whether it’s time to fly to Couer d’Alene (via Spokane) to say goodbye. The crisis seems to be averted for now. My grampa has had dementia for many years, and doesn’t know me when I see him.

I want to go with them, since there won’t be a funeral or memorial service, per Grampa’s wishes. He’s a WWII vet and has paid in advance to be cremated, and his ashes spread over the Pacific.

Glen Alfred Openshaw has lived till 93 despite many years of alcoholism and chain smoking. His first wife, my grandmother, put a bullet in her brain when my daddy was just 12. My dad was a crossing guard assigned by the school, and was standing in the crosswalk holding children back to safety with his arms when a neighborhood friend ran up to tell him his mother was being removed from the home by ambulance. My dad stayed another 20 minutes to finish his duties—this tells you about the kind of human being  he is. Loyal, hard-working, duty-oriented.

I imagine, with the addictions he developed, my grampa was running from ghosts. However, he did kick both of those habits when I was young, and saved his fifth marriage and probably the last half of his life, in so doing.

Before we got the word about Grampa, I was in the stands watching Cade pitch another 11-1 game, so close to being another shut-out, against Orem High. My two youngest brothers were there, Spencer and Ben, whom I refer to as Spennie and Bennie. They are lifelong best friends. Spencer arrived with Dill Pickle flavored sunflower seeds, and we had this convo:

Me: Did you get those because it’s a baseball game and all baseball players spit seeds?

Spencer: No, I actually just had them in my car.

Me: Well, I don’t want to ruin your enjoyment of them, but did you know that flavor is loaded with MSG?

Ben: We know! That’s why we buy them! In fact I am looking to buy some EXTRA MSG sunflower seeds. It is my favorite food, MSG is. [Both my brothers laughing and eating seeds.]

Me: Okay. Well. Informed decisions are good. Now you’re informed.

That same week, I had a convo with my friend Sam who is a golfer, basketball player, and 4.5 tennis player and coach, an R.N.—as well as a smoker. Not for the first time, I told him how much I wish he would quit.

Much like I begged my grampa to quit smoking, when I was a little girl, and flushed his cigarettes down the toilet—my grampa did quit and never smoked or drank again.

In response, Sam said, “Here’s the thing. Nobody loves their life more than I do mine. But I don’t want to be 70 years old! I want to die before then.”

I said, “Yeah, but remember when we were 20 and we thought 40 was old? We figured, who cares if we bake in the sun, or get drunk and eat junk food! We won’t care when we’re 40 because old people are just OLD and don’t care about anything.”

Sam laughs and says yes. “So,” I continue, “what if it’s the same way when we’re 70? We don’t know, because we’re not 70 yet. But what if you GET there and you really WANT to keep living—not only living, but living WELL, for another 30 years?”

“Why do you want to make that decision NOW when you might be just as in love with life, at 70?”

I love the way we rationalize our way out of the consequences of our decisions with silly logic.

There’s another problem with Sam’s logic: what if you DON’T die, but are just sick, and smell awful, and have a hacking cough and black lungs—emphysema or lung cancer for years and years? What if you don’t die until 70, but you wreck the life you could have been living in the meantime?

I love that my grampa has lived 93 years. I wouldn’t want the last 15 years of his life, for myself, though. I hope to keep my brain free of metals and junk, so I’m clear as a bell till the end.

I want to go out like a light switch, not on a dimmer bulb. I want that for my family and friends, all of you, too.