Antibiotics and dental surgery….do I agree with taking AB’s preventatively? Part 2 of 2

Answer:

Dr. Larson, I have always appreciated how conscientious you are in your practice, and in your ongoing study to legitimately find the truth. And I think it’s impressive that you stay open minded….plenty of docs wouldn’t even ask me what I think. Like I once did, they trust only peer-reviewed-journal-published clinical trials. Of course, the drug industry INVENTED the clinical trial, which hasn’t ever been tested.

There’s plenty of evidence that should be considered that didn’t go through a multi-million dollar drug trial.

I am aware that occasionally antibiotics may be necessary, in a life-threatening situation. Thank goodness we have them for meningitis!

But I also believe that preventative antibiotics lead to ever-downward-spiraling health problems. I just can’t accept that 20 men on a firing squad are needed to remove a splinter. Just one trained practitioner, with fine instruments, is needed for that. We have lots of natural options that work, outside drugs.

Antibiotics—just one dose!—destroy the vast majority of healthy gut bacteria that is the crux of our immune system. A healthy gut has more organisms flourishing than the entire body has cells! And one round of antibiotic can cause cascading problems for years, even decades. I believe that virtually everyone in North America now has gut issues, and impaired digestion. The reasons?

Number one, antibiotic use. Number two, processed and preserved foods. Number three, genetically modified corn and soy, and hybridized wheat.

I wish that medical professionals would talk about the OTHER side of that issue—the guaranteed health problems that result from antibiotic use—and let the patient decide. That seems fair and right to me, that “professional liability” (CYA) not trump patient best interests to the point that so many of us are just avoiding the medical professional altogether.

I realize none of this is your fault, nor any single practitioner’s. The system has become very broken, where the American tort system has terrified doctors and made malpractice big business.

But I am on the patient advocate side, and I always look at what is best for the whole organism, for the long term. And I know quite a few docs standing up against the codification of medical care to be a monopoly for drug approaches—docs who are so angry that they risk status and even license to “do the right thing.”

I listen to people every day. At my lectures in 50 cities annually, and in emails, facebook, and my blog, people detail the chaos and devastation from their broken immune systems that always starts in the gut.

How do they have a chance, if AB’s are prescribed for just EVERYTHING? The body is never trusted, by the authors of the “standard of care,” to send white blood cells to the rescue and to do its job.

The medical system in the U.S., unlike in Europe and most other parts of the world, absolutely refuses to use natural plant extracts (herbs, essential oils, etc.) to aid and nurture the body’s immune system.

Antibiotics are a good thing only if they’re used once or twice in a lifetime, at most, to deal with an absolute crisis.

Twenty years ago, many who are well educated about the ramifications of AB use were sounding the alarm bell about overuse for ear infections and every cold and flu symptom.  Nobody listened much.

So we’ve gotten worse, rather than changing course. Now we prescribe antibiotics as PREVENTATIVES before every surgery, even dental surgeries. I worked on a mental hospital children’s unit where the kids were given MONTHLY antibiotics as preventatives!

I was told that endodontists would refuse to do a root canal on me, if I didn’t take a preventative AB. So I found an endodontist who didn’t have that policy. Perhaps he was stepping outside “standard of care.”

Or maybe he just looked the other way. (Later this month, I am having the tooth with that root canal, which failed 18 months later, removed. At the time I did not know how toxic the practice of fossilizing a dead tooth is. But now I do.)

Sure, on a rare occasion, there’s an infection that morphs to become something dangerous. But I take issue when doctors are alarmist about a possibility that is one in ten thousand. (That’s how docs got my mother to agree to AB’s every few months when I was a child—by telling them my strep could become scarlet fever.) I consequently spent a lot of my adulthood recovering my broken immune system.

Some of the risks of antibiotics are nearly 100%–yeast overgrowth and devastation of healthy flora in the gut, for instance.

In fact, on a rare occasion, an AB can be fatal too.

Most of the time, the body does its job after an insult like surgery, and the immune system is consequently strengthened.  My biological dentist has natural things to prevent disaster: before my oral surgery, I will have a high-dose IV Vitamin C. Dr. John Augsperger, who hosted my class in Colorado Springs last week, does the same, and he gave me his favorite dental hygiene product, the all-natural Tooth & Gum Tonic by Dental Herb Company.

I LOVE this stuff. No chemicals, alcohol, flavorings, preservatives, sweeteners, chemical poloxsamers or fractionated ingredients. It’s essential oils, herbs, all organic or wildcrafted. It’s the best mouthwash you’ve ever used, gum-disease preventative, and it’s really STRONG, too.

Dr. Augsperger is a biological dentist. I’ve found lots of them who research far beyond what the ADA-controlled dental schools teach, to discover a whole world of different thinking. It’s exciting, it’s empowering, it has lots of innovative solutions….and it’s just way outside “standard of care.”

Outside just dentistry, there are lots of natural antibiotics for child and adult use, that are cell specific and don’t destroy gut flora or healthy cells.  Colloidal silver. Garlic. Herbs like goldenseal.

Antibiotics virtually guarantee yeast overgrowth. They virtually guarantee that viruses and bacterial organisms will bring the whole organism to its knees, over and over, because now its defenses are down.

My friend Ben got a sinus infection and now he’s on antibiotics over and over, I think about 6 times in 2012 already. He has tons of devastating consequences for this vicious cycle, including terrible digestive problems, that many people suffer with now, thanks to our sick love affair with antibiotics.

(Similarly, medicine uses steroids with even more devastating effects on immunity.)

Anyway, Dr. L, this is my opinion and my experience. Since I started refusing antibiotics completely 17 years ago and using alternatives, my family has gotten dramatically healthier, and I’m happier with my arsenal of options, rather than being dependent on pharmaceuticals and waiting to get in to see a doc who, in the end, is kind of a one-trick pony with the prescription pad.

The main one, of course, is to keep them eating a plant-based, high-raw, mostly alkaline diet. Then they’re strong and far less susceptible to the scary stuff.

Your thoughts?

from Brenda, on facebook

Thanks to Brenda DeSmit in Canada, on facebook, for posting this (I’ve edited it for length):

I must post my experience with Green Smoothie Girl & her 12 Steps to Whole Foods program.

Last summer I was forced to quit my high-stress, fast-paced career due to my health. A successful Finance & Insurance Manager is a self-determined, strong-willed, kick-ass personality…NOTHING takes us down. NEVER did anything get in my way until the last few years—recently every little thing seemed to have me BEAT).

I’d developed a muscular condition that was taking my life from me. I dealt with at least 9 pain points randomly on my body at any given time all throughout each day! My bowels had stopped working on their own. My vision was blurred and I had very little night vision. My concentration was gone and my memory foggy. The pain was exhausting me; I slept on average of 18-20 hours a day!

I was taking A LOT of medication and the doctors’ recommendations are always MORE drugs. The list of ailments really does go on and on, but I won’t, I’m putting that behind me now thanks to Green Smoothie Girl!

If you take ONE thing from Green Smoothie Girl it must be green  smoothies—your daily intake of so many nutrients, enzymes, & more, replacing other less nutritious food you may have eaten before, like a bagel & cream cheese, a muffin, a crummy store-bought cereal bar, etc.

My second takeaway from Green Smoothie Girl was to be more AWARE of what we put into our bodies. First thing to GO was packaged noodles, packaged rice, packaged sauces, white flour, white sugar, white breads. There are so many other options; home-made bread, wraps, buns etc.

Our foods have never tasted so fresh & so delicious! With only those couple of pretty major changes my body is happier than ever in only 1 month! I can’t wait to see what is yet to come!

I no longer take ANY medication and my bowels work all on their own. Not what we want to talk about but most gastro intestinal specialists will tell you it is normal for about 70%–WOW!– to have some sort of bowel issue. The medical doctors think this is NORMAL?

My energy level is through the roof, the pain I feel is “good pain” from the exercise I’m getting doing jobs left long-overdue: cleaning every inch of my home, my windows, painting jobs, cleaning up & digging up my gardens. I am truly enjoying every moment with my family & getting back out into the world with friends (my social life was gone). I’m strolling the Mall & creating wonderful foods to care for my family as I should have been always.

What “Green Smoothie Girl” really is all about is just getting back to our roots, what we know and don’t do. It doesn’t take up much of your day to just make smarter choices. It takes just as long to make a nutritious meal as it does to make a crummy one.

As I’m sure it was Green Smoothie Girl’s intention…it is my intention that if I can help just one person feel like I do, WOW! Thank you Green Smoothie Girl…every day is a new day of health & happiness. Nnot only for me but for my incredible family also, as they have all jumped on board one day at a time. They each come in at different times throughout the day & the first thing they do is grab the smoothie jug in the fridge & pour themselves a great big cup of nutrition. Thanks to YOU!

The latest green smoothie debate, part 3 of 3

That your stomach is full of low calories and high nutrition, after your quart of green smoothie, means you didn’t eat something else. Something worse.

Both are great for different reasons—chewed foods, and blended foods.

I may sound like a broken record. But let me plead with you once again NOT to look at green smoothies as a way to cover up the abominations in your diet the REST of your day. We must take it further. It’s a great first step, but by itself it’s not good enough, especially if caffeine, animal flesh, and candy are still in your other meals.

This issue is a bit of a double-edged sword. With food that we chew, foods aren’t broken down ENOUGH for us to extract all their nutrition. Foods not chewed well cause problems with undigested proteins floating as debris in the blood and causing all kinds of inflammatory problems.

Blended foods break the fiber down. (As I’ve said, that’s not all bad. But it won’t do as well as a “colon sweeper” as a bowl of granola, or a big salad, or a bowl of lentil soup, can accomplish.)

These “experts” telling people not to drink green smoothies are forgetting a number of facts, one of which is critically important. In my lectures, I almost always have someone volunteer, and when they come up, I ask them to eat a big platter of kale, chard, and spinach, representing the amount of greens in the quart of green smoothie, daily, that I recommend. It often takes the volunteer 30 to 45 minutes to eat it. Sometimes they quit in despair, even in front of 200+ people! (Then I let them save face by picking some audience members to come up and help them.)

I ask the audience, how many of you are chewing up this amount of green food, daily? The answer, among approximately 9,000 people this year in my audiences, is somewhere between 0.0% and 0.05%. Keep in mind that while plenty of Standard American Diet folks come to my lectures, many vegans, raw foodists, and general health nuts do, too! Even the salad eaters cannot raise their hand and claim to be chewing up 15 servings of kale, turnip greens, arugula, bananas, and berries.

The forgotten fact is, in ANY form, Americans simply aren’t eating that quantity of good-quality natural plant fiber.

And then there’s the fact that our jaw is degenerated and devolved to a very narrow width and no muscle tone, from three generations of eating soft, processed foods. We can’t break our foods down sufficiently with chewing.   I’m mostly leaving that argument out, since I talk about that so often.

So the main danger, to me, of telling people they shouldn’t drink green smoothies because chewing it is better, is that you’re essentially telling them to stick with same-old same-old. Telling them that if eating huge quantities of “bulk” in salads, bowls of legumes, and granolas is ideal at a 10 (scale of 1 to 10), and achieving a 9.5 with a quart of green smoothie is worthless. It’s an unbalanced statement given the circumstances we are in—and it’s neither wise or responsible.

It’s like attacking Barney (the purple dinosaur) as the root of children’s problems while ignoring pedophiles, soda pop, and the Ritalin epidemic.

Green smoothies aren’t worthless or harmful. They’re a 9.5 on the 1-10 scale. That’s massively better than a Power Bar, a double cheeseburger, a Diet Coke, a Biggie Fries, or a Doritos with a Capri Sun. These are American staples.

Green smoothies aren’t the enemy—junk food is.

The answer, then? EAT BOTH. Chew some good plant food. Take some time and chew it well. And blend some, too, as green smoothies.

If you make my granola and have anything to say here about that challenge of eating it daily for two weeks and reporting on what it does for DIGESTION..do tell!

The latest green smoothie debate, part 2 of 3

In addition to that formalized piece of research, we have had thousands of testimonials mailed to the site, and I’ve spoken in 2011 to 50 live audiences of approximately   9,000 people. Many of them stay after and wait for up to 2 hours to talk, and many email us, and I daily hear stories that cause me to continue traveling to share my message.

None of the three people spreading this idea to avoid blending greens have the experience I do speaking to audiences of 15,000 the past 2 years and asking questions like this:

“How many of you are eating the amount of greens on this platter?” (The platter represents what’s in a quart of green smoothie.)

EVEN IF a salad is superior (and I dispute that, even though I love salads too!), guess what? Virtually no one is eating that much salad. I choose to operate in facts and realities to come up with solutions that people will actually DO.

Try putting 2 lbs. of fresh greens and vegetables on a giant platter. Tell someone to eat it in a day.  (That’s the goal in 12 Steps to Whole Foods. It’s also the goal of Eat to Live, Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s program.) It’s beyond daunting—it’s virtually impossible unless you’re going to spend 30 mins. chopping and 90 minutes chewing. Remember, we are debilitated (thanks to three generations of our people eating processed foods, weakening the jaw and narrowing the palate). I am working within current realities.

Remember, green smoothies require no salad dressings, with all their calories, preservatives, fat, refined oils and processed/chemical sweeteners. And cell walls are broken open, making nutrition instantly available. Some of the nutrition in salad is locked away to us because our narrow palates cannot break it down, and we swallow chunks rather than creamed greens.

I obviously feel strongly that green smoothies are a great way to spend 10 minutes to get up to 15 servings of raw fruits and greens in the diet. That said, an important point we can take from this new criticism of blending our raw greens, is that we should eat a variety of high-fiber plant foods.

If you don’t think that regular ‘chewed’ food that you eat with a fork or spoon is important, you haven’t made one of my granola recipes in Chapter 11 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods. My challenge has always been,

Eat it daily for two weeks and tell me if it doesn’t radically change your digestion.

I texted my friend Jennie just now who was complaining about constipation, “Make my granola from Ch. 10 and it will change your life.”

Let me be graphic. You will eliminate regularly, with more bulk, and feel very “cleaned out” and energized. Honestly, I don’t talk enough about eating granola. Not store-bought kinds. Homemade, with lots of bran and grains and seeds and nuts. Fabulous sources of Omega 3 fatty acids. And loads of roughage.

To drag your digestive tract with lots of insoluble fiber, granola wins.

For overall nutrition, made quickly, consumed easily, for high impact on many different health issues, green smoothies win. Don’t forget that a quart will completely fill your stomach, with only 200 calories. You don’t need any dressing to get it down. You don’t have to prep it for 30 minutes and spend another 30 minutes eating it.

I need to gain some weight! Part 3 of 3

I have been studying a massive amount of information in the past few months about over 80,000 toxic chemicals and metals in our environment. Where they come from, what they do to us, how to avoid them, and how to get rid of them. Food (especially meat/dairy and processed foods), cosmetics, clothes, furniture and paint and carpet, water, air, dental and medical procedures, and more.

I’m doing this for a few reasons. First, I just finished an 8-page paper on the effects on your health of far infrared sauna treatment. I’ve been using mine every day, plus taking fulvic acid, to bring metals and chemicals out. I want them gone, and in my hyper-focus on toxicity lately, I find myself undertaking new, good habits to get as clean as possible. I need my energy and health so I can take my mission further, harder. I go 100 miles an hour and I don’t want to slow down!

I keep encountering more information about how chemical toxicity in our cells impedes weight loss. I can’t imagine that it doesn’t cut both ways, impeding your ability to arrive at your optimal weight, whatever direction that needs to go, up or down.

Second, I’m developing a detox program. I joined Tera in hers last year, but I concluded that I wanted a harder-hitting, information-dense, educational cleanse that would educate you while giving you measurable results. (If you’re going to suppress calories, might as well be getting healthier at the same time that you’re getting thinner!)

I’d hoped to kick it off right after New Year’s, but I keep getting more ambitious with it so we won’t be ready. Much like I did with 12 Steps to Whole Foods, I’m synthesizing all the best texts and best practices in detoxification and disease risk minimization. All boiled down into one 21-day program. It’s a food-elimination program to test your food sensitivities / allergies. It’s a kidney cleanse. It’s a colon cleanse. And it’s a liver and gall bladder flush as well. You can do it with us once, or join for life and do it twice a year. We’ll have expert phone calls every night with fabulous content, you’ll be assigned a “detox buddy” to be accountable to, if you don’t bring your own, and you’ll know exactly what to do and eat every day.

The manual holds your hand, answers common questions, educates you in the briefest way about what products you’re using that are toxic and what the alternatives are. It gives you recipes to get through an effective cleanse, using food, either at a newbie’s pace, or a more advanced one for those already “initiated” who eat pretty clean and have detoxed before. There will be a fully medically supported option—I am talking to a few docs who have published in the arena of cleansing, and will pick one to work with. You’ll know exactly why you’re doing each part of the detox.

My point is, purging fat cells (and organs) of the chemicals they’ve been storing for years is something that cannot be neglected in any effort to change your weight–up or down. Did you know that thin people can be fat inside? That’s right—a study I read about three years ago found that many people who are normal weight have organs marbled with fat, which is far more dangerous than fat held in adipose tissue under the skin, the kind we can see. People who work out regularly, who are visibly overweight, have much lower morbidity, that normal-weight people who don’t exercise and are internally “fat.”

So fat can’t necessarily be thin……but thin can be fat!

And no matter how much whole plant foods some people eat, and no matter how many chemicals they eliminate, those who have a damaged gastrointestinal tract can’t fully utilize nutrition. Another element that absolutely must be addressed is healing the gut. Because of many years of a wretched diet, you might have an inflamed digestive system in serious need of some rehab. Many underweight people fall in this category.

That rehab is done by eliminating dairy and gluten for a time and learning to eat probiotic-rich foods to build up an army of healthy microorganisms to protect and defend the lining of the stomach, intestines, and colon.

Can’t wait to share more with you about detoxification, one of my major projects of 2012. I am very excited about it and the potential to help people get better, rise above their health problems.

Gain weight the right way….I hate when a young mom tells me her pediatrician told her to feed her underweight baby lots of candy, ice cream, butter, and fried food. So then you’ll have a baby with more body fat who is ill and damaged in many ways, with tastes set to junk food. How is that useful? Take the time to find ways to get higher-calorie WHOLE PLANT FOODS in your diet if you are truly malnourished. The plant kingdom is VAST. With a little creativity and dedication, it can provide weight loss, weight gain, whatever you need.

When Grandma Comes to Spoil the Kids, part 1 of 3

This is edited for length, from “Momof3.” It was a response to one of my recent blog postings and I re-post it here.

I often get long emails like this from readers, asking what to do about the older generation’s visits to our children, filled with junk-food “spoiling.” Parents feel that their hard work to provide good nutrition is being un-done by Grandma.

Today, read her comments. Tomorrow, read my reply:

“I needed a pep talk! The in-laws will be staying for 8 DAYS.

I wish I was making it up when I say my mom in law (when she came after the last baby birth) feeds my kids chocolate chip cookies FOR BREAKFAST. (I came down from nursing baby and sleepless night and the kids had milk and cookies sitting on the table at 7:00 am. Grandma just smiled and said, “I’m spoiling them.”) Maceys giant ice cream cones FOR DINNER!

I asked if she would buy spinach at the store and lemons for a wonderful whole wheat pasta spinach dish. She came home with a chocolate ice cream kong cone at 4:30 pm and Cheetohs.

What adult thinks that is a good dinner for a 2- and 3-year old? Again, she smiled and said, “Grandma is spoiling them, and I’m not that hungry either.” I was not amused. I confronted her about it and she just said, “Grandma spoiled them.”

She also bribes them w/ Smarties to ‘be good’ at the store, I looked over at my son in church and he had a mouthful of Skittles and was munching on ‘fruit by the foot’. Grandma had a list of fast food places w/ takeout every night for dinner and brought it home, then tried to give my babies pop and “diet juice” with artificial sweeteners to wash it down because “diet juice” is “healthy.”

Plus, I guess, my freezer full homemade smoothie bars did not seem to be a good summer treat because grandma decided they needed a huge gigantic bag of popsicles instead. (I had made smoothie bars before going to the hospital and pointed out there were lots in the freezer along with all my other healthy snacks.)

I will get through this. I can do it. The kids WILL thank me someday. I KNOW I am fighting the good fight! I can do this even if my in laws (not to be rude, they are good good people and loving grandparents but they are morbidly obese) will try to sabotage me where I live. In my own home with my babies. I WILL be strong. I will not cave. I quietly will go about my ways and quietly do my thing with my babies and self and hubby and the world will stay right. I will do right by my family. I will do it as kindly as possible, but I will be kind but firm. Any suggestions?

What happens when I’m outnumbered 3 to 1? (Hubby and parents against me? especially when hubby’s mom is making all hubby’s ‘favorites?’) When it’s not just pop culture trying to sway our children…but loved ones too? The kids see the Twizzlers, soda, Captain Crunch, potato chips, Cheetos, big pink Grandma cookies, pimento olive bologna loaf, white bread, big greasy Costco muffins, hot dogs, M&M’s, milk, fake peanut butter, Cream of Chicken soup casseroles. This is what my in-laws buy and make and eat at our house. Of course that is what my kids want instead too.

It doesn’t work to have meals and menus ready and food bought and planned. They SHOP for ALL their favorites when they don’t find them in my cupboards because they won’t eat what I make. (They say it ‘messes with their digestion’ to eat whole grains, legumes, greens, and so much fruit and veggies.)

Even when I plan it all out, “cookie salad” (nothing salad about it) gets whipped up or something like it and stuck on the table. Unfortunately, if it’s in the house (or in Grandma’s purse) it finds its way into my children. It’s such a sporadic encounter because they live out of state that it’s difficult to just go off about how EVERYTHING they buy and eat for the 8 days is just unacceptable to feed my kids.

But, the BIG no-no’s for me Grandma tries to feed to them on a large scale: processed lunch meat, artificial sweeteners, soda, milk and ooooodles of sugar constantly. I don’t want to feel like the bad guy for 8 days, but they really are over the top with their terrible eating habits while staying at my house and feeding my children. More pep talks please! I’m in serious anxiety mode. Family pressure is intense!”