Archive | October, 2010

Cilantro pesto cures muscle aches and hair loss says my cousin Meg

31 Oct

Thanks sonaspicesla.com for the picture

Well – actually my lovely cousin Meg just passed on this really interesting info about the healing powers of cilantro AKA coriander. I eat a lot of coriander so am excited to hear that not only does it add essential flavour to some of my ‘dry’ raw food concoctions but it is clears my body of heavy metals, a problem I haven’t previously really considered.  Ranging from muscle aches and pains, headaches and hair loss to depression and low concentration, according to many sources on the internet – the symptoms are frighteningly wide and varied.

In the article Detoxifies Heavy Metal (mercury from amalgamated fillings) by Klaus Ferlow in an excerpt from The Botanical Review — a technical bulletin published by The Institute of Quantum & Molecular Medicine:

Since Roman times cilantro has been used as food and medicine. A recent study by Dr. Yoshiaki Omura from the Heart Disease Research Foundation, New York,  has discovered that the herb cilantro will detoxify mercury from neural tissue*., is used to help stimulate the appetite and relieves minor digestive irritation.This is a remarkable discovery. It is a novel technique, which greatly increased our ability to clear up recurring infections, both viral and bacterial. Bioactive Cilantro blend is an inexpensive, easy way to remove (or chelate) toxic metals from the nervous system and body tissues. Cilantro blend contains yellow dock to help drain the mercury from the connective tissues. It is an excellent blood cleanser, tonic, and builder, working through increasing the ability of the liver and related organs to strain and purify the blood and lymph system. Achieves it’s tonic properties through the astringent purification of the blood supply to the glands and acts as a cleansing herb for the lymphatic system.

Here’s a recipe from Lena Sanchez on website rawfoodinfo.com

Cilantro Pesto
1 clove garlic
cup almonds, cashews, or other nuts
1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons olive oil

Put the cilantro and olive oil in blender and process until the cilantro is chopped. Add the rest of the ingredients and process to a lumpy paste. (You may need to add a touch of hot water and scrape the sides of the blender.) You can change the consistency by altering the amount of olive oil and lemon juice, but keep the 3:1 ratio of oil to juice. (It freezes well, so you can make several batches at once.)

As rawfoodinfo.com says: Cilantro has been proven to chelate toxic metals from our bodies in a relatively short period of time. Combined with the benefits of the other ingredients, this recipe is a powerful tissue cleanser.

Two teaspoons of this pesto daily for three weeks is purportedly enough to increase the urinary excretion of mercury, lead, and aluminum, thus effectively removing these toxic metals from our bodies. We can consider doing this cleanse for three weeks at least once a year. 

Lena Sanchez also tells us that 

Dr. Omura said he discovered, almost by accident, that the leaves of the coriander plant can accelerate the excretion of mercury, lead and aluminum from the body. He had been treating several patients for an eye infection called trachoma (granular conjunctivitis), which is caused by the micro-organism Chlamydia trachomatis. Following the standard treatment with antibiotics, Dr. Omura found that the patients’ symptoms would clear up initially, then recur within a few months. He experienced similar difficulties in treating viral-related problems like Herpes Simplex types I & II and Cytomegalovirus infections.

After taking a closer look, Dr. Omura found these organisms seemed to hide and flourish in areas of the body where there were concentrations of heavy metals like mercury, lead, and aluminium. Somehow the organisms were able to use the toxic metals to protect themselves from the antibiotics.

It just so happens that while he was testing for these toxic metals, Dr. Omura noticed that mercury levels in the urine increased after one consumed a healthy serving of Vietnamese soup. The soup contained Chinese parsley, or as it is better known in this country, cilantro. (Some of you may also know it as coriander, since it comes from the leaves of the coriander plant.)

I’ve taught a recipe of raw coriander pesto in one of my classes – using a dash of chilli and lime juice instead of lemon – it’s absolutely delicious. This is one recipe I recommend on a daily basis.

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Wheatgrass: the miracle juice

24 Oct

 

Doesn't taste great but the benefits are endless

I wish I could say I was a fan of the taste of wheatgrass but I’m not.  Somehow it just does not go down well with my body and frankly, makes me gag.  But – I am a fan of what it does.  I drink it as often as I can, because according to my research and the boost I feel when I have a shot – it is a miracle juice.  As my favourite Borough market wheatgrass ‘dealer’ says, ‘there’s three days worth of green leafy vegetables in one shot’.

There’s a tonne of info on the internet about wheatgrass but the other day I came across The Wheatgrass Book by Ann Wigmore.  Ann and her husband are founders of the controversial Hippocrates Institute that provides a rigorous psychological and nutritional process with a wheatgrass fast at its core designed to support the body in its fight against such diseases as cancer. While modern medicine will refute their claims, I have heard them speak and the logic is, at least to me, irrefutable. 

While wheatgrass contains at least 13 vitamins including B12, many minerals and trace elements, including selenium, and all 20 amino acids, the number one benefit is the supply of chlorophyll.  As you might remember from biology classes and as Ann explains on her website, cancertutor.com, chlorophyll has almost the same molecular structure as human hemoglobin and works to increase hemoglobin production, meaning more oxygen gets to the whole body.  Chlorophyll is also a protein compound found in green leaves and grasses that converts the sun’s energy into the energy that helps a plant grow. While our bodies store energy, plants get theirs directly from the sun.  Ie by consuming chlorophyll in leafy plants that enables roots of trees to push through the earth, we humans can directly benefit from what Ann describes as a life-force.

The other essential vitamins and minerals include;

A for eyesight and reproduction
B helps use up carbs for energy and aids our nervous system
E protects the heart
Calcium is good for bones
Sodium aids digestion and water balance
Potassium tones muscle and firms skin
Zinc supports hair growth and synthesis of protein
Iron is essential for blood formation
Selenium is a mood balancer and an immunity builder
Magnesium is for muscle function and helps draw fat from the liver 

The long list of amino acids (AKA protein) includes:
Lysine for immune support
Leucine to keep us alert
Tryptophane to calm the nerves and build rich blood
Phenylalnine helps the thyroid do its job to calm our nerves
And many more

So where is the evidence that wheatgrass is really any good for you?

Ann provides it in abundance. However I should remind you that I am not a qualified scientist or nutritionist and cannot verify any of the studies, but I am sure the internet can if you’re interested. So here’s some of it:

Dr Chiu-Lan at University of Texas showed that wheatgrass as an anti-mutagenic effect and has the ability to fight tumours.

Japanese scientists working alongside Yosihide Hagiwara M.D. found that enzymes and amino acids in young grass plants neutralise the toxicity of nitrogen in exhaust fumes and deactivate the carcinogenic effects of 3.4 benzyprene, a substance found in smoked fish and charcoaled meats.

Dr Arthur Robinson, co-founder of Linus Pauling Institute says that wheatgrass juice makes blood vessels bigger so that blood flows more easily.  This results in increased nutrition to our body’s cells and more efficient removal of waste.

Otto Warburg M.D. a German biochemist won the Nobel prize because of his work in cancer research.  His studies show that cancer thrives in an oxygen-poor environment supporting his view that cancer is not a virus, but a process of cell mutation caused by oxygen deprivation.

Smoking, meat, air pollution, high fat and sugar intake and lack of exercise starve the body of oxygen. Fresh green juices such as wheatgrass, raw leafy greens, living sprouts and deep breathing increase oxygen in our bodies.  We get chlorophyll from these living leafy plants.  Chlorophyll is practically liquid oxygen. Oxygen keeps you alkaline and disease-free. What are you waiting for?

I buy mine fresh at Crush or Planet Organic. To buy it frozen – try naturallygreen.co.uk, and in tablet form -try wheat-grassuk.com.

Is Bill Clinton a raw foodie?

12 Oct

After plants and before plants - photo from The Telegraph


I’ve always liked Bill Clinton, aside from the Monica-cigargate episode of course, but now he really rises to the top of my esteem. By talking openly about how and why he is embracing a near vegan diet, he is making highly nutritious food mainstream and acceptable and that is frankly amazing for the nutritional health of the planet.

My ‘educated’ friends, family and work mates regularly scoff me for my ‘crazy/mad/extreme’ rituals of drinking wheatgrass shots, chlorella and spinach shakes or even coconut water. I let it go because I know that understanding that food is a nutritious fuel good for our mind, body and souls and not just a low cal, low fat way to get through the day, means accepting that the way we’ve been brought up in terms of diet is fundamentally not helpful to our bodies. It’s not easy. Our parents did what was best for us based on what their parents told them. Now that new best friend Bill advocates a plant based diet, proves the benefits by looking great and talks about it – we ‘crazies’ have an ambassador and we have hope. Perhaps even my friends will be convinced…

The Telegraph reported the story in the article ‘Bill Clinton’s new diet: nothing but beans, vegetables and fruit to combat heart disease.’ It says: Bill Clinton says he has turned his back on hamburgers and pizzas for good, and now follows a diet of beans, vegetables and fruit in an effort to combat heart disease.

Mr Clinton’s penchant for burgers and barbecue and his battles with heart disease are well documented. But he has now gone public in America with the secret he shared with guests at his daughter’s nuptials – he is following a near-vegan regimen.

He was under orders from Chelsea, who is a long-standing vegan, to lose weight before he walked her down the aisle. But he opted for a plant-based low-fat diet, free of dairy or meat, because of bold claims that it naturally reverses coronary disease. He underwent bypass surgery in 2004 and then earlier this year had stents inserted to hold open his clogged coronary arteries.

“I went on essentially a plant-based diet,” the former president, 64, who is back on the campaign trail stumping for Democratic candidates in next month’s mid-term congressional elections, told a television interviewer who asked about his weight loss.

“I live on beans, legumes, vegetables, fruit. I drink a protein supplement every morning – no dairy, I drink almond milk mixed in with fruit and a protein powder so I get the protein for the day when I start the day up.”

He references a book called The China Study, which if you look at their website is a book that draws on findings in rural China, that detail the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The report also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful lobbies, government entities, and opportunistic scientists. The New York Times has recognized the study (China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project) as the “Grand Prix of epidemiology” and the “most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.”

I haven’t it read yet – but I will do asap. Thanks Bill.