Sunday, February 24, 2008

Vitamin D--The Sunshine Vitamin

I was talking to a courageous mother at my daughter's school who is
fighting stage four lung cancer at 41 years of age and I asked her if
she had found any kind of nutritional intervention to be helpful.
She told me that she was taking Vitamin D because they discovered
she had low levels of Vitamin D. She remarked that she had thought
for years it was better to avoid the sun and use sunscreen...who knew
Vitamin D was so important.

On February 19, 2008 The New York Times had an article about the
importance of Vitamin D, titled "An Oldie Vies for Nutrient of the
Decade
." Research suggests that the recommended daily amount of
Vitamin D (400) is too low and that the current dosage prevents
rickets and a true deficiency, but more (1000) dramatically reduces
your risk for cancer and diabetes.

Since Vitamin D is added to milk and you need to drink 4 cups of milk
to get the current (probably too low) daily allowance, every adult
should consider taking Vitamin D3 supplement (cholecalciferol)
because according to the NYT article "D2, or ergocalciferol is 25 less
effective." For adults, this type of Vitamin D as well as the other vitamins I recommend can be found most easily in Dr. Weil's Daily Multivitamin for Optimum Health.

Another thing to know is that Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin. It
needs some fat to be absorbed, so people who eat extremely low fat
diets, might want to reconsider their intake of fat. Because people
who have celiac disease don't absorb fat, they are at risk for having
low levels of Vitamin D. Fat soluble vitamins can be toxic at high
levels, because you can't flush them out like the water soluble
vitamins, so that is why they set the low level of recommended daily
allowance.

Two doctors, with knowledge of vitamins, who have looked at my
adequate Vitamin D levels have suggested I take 1,000 I.U. so
this seems to be a safe, progressive standard adult dosage.

WHAT TO FEED YOUR KIDS: A daily multivitamin...everyday
and sunshine, whenever possible.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Geri Brewster on What To Feed Your Kids

Geri Brewster on AAEM's Warning about GMO Foods
Quote of the Week: Geri Brewster
Spring Cleaning Tip #3

Meringues - An Already Gluten Free Cookie

I made these cookies in the midst of packing for a vacation, helping my daughter with valentines cards and making a fish stew. There was too much going on to make them picture perfect, but it was fun and easy to make them.

My daughter never ate bread and has always preferred food that is not grain based. I love these cookies because they are naturally gluten free and are made with basic ingredients easily found in most stores.



Meringues:

4 egg whites
1 cup powdered or confectioners sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp cream of tartar


Preheat oven to 225º.
Eggs should be room temperature (about 70 degrees) If you take them out of the fridge, you can soak them in warm water for 5 minutes to warm them up.
Beat eggs with a mixer until foamy.
Add vanilla and cream of tartar.
Add a Tablespoon at a time while continuing to beat powdered sugar
When the mixture stands in stiff peaks it is done. Don't overmix. *** Pipe or spoon onto baking sheets covered with parchment paper. Decorate with granulated sugar. Bake in 225º oven for 1 hour or 175º oven overnight.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Genetically Modified Milk and rBGH

Allergykids.com has a wonderful food politics blog that I really admire. On February 1st, there was an excellent article "Got Milk Allergy? What the Labels (and Docs!) Don't Tell Us" with an overview of the controversial rBGH growth hormone given to many cows in the United States and outlawed in other countries. Youtube has a video explaining the rBGH controversy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwkwhJuZtbw&feature=related

Youtube also has a video explaining how the rBGH controversy has been covered up.



This is an older, more sensational, but not inaccurate story done on Hard Copy about rBGH.



WHAT TO FEED YOUR KIDS: Organic Milk products for everyone who can tolerate milk. If you do ONE thing to improve your kids health, switch to organic milk.

Food Rotating for Picky Eaters

Everyone knows that fruits and vegetables are by far the healthiest foods to eat. They are full of nutrients and phytonutrients that we need to stay healthy. Even if your child is a picky eater, sometimes you can think of a few foods that they like which are vegetables. My six year old daughter likes: artichokes, pickles, olives and carrots. With the carrots, if I just put a bowl out she will eat them, but if I ask her to eat them she will start crying and protest she doesn't want to. She doesn't do well with pressure.

What I learned from Dr. Pescatore, a NYC physician, who practices integrative medicine and does allergy testing, is that the healthiest way to eat is to rotate foods so you aren't eating the same food everyday. Kids would prefer to eat the same thing day after day, but building a little variety into their diet ensures they are getting different nutrients and not eating the same molecule day after day. It also prevents allergies and intolerances. We try to do this with snacks, fruits, nuts as well as vegetables. Here is our snack rotation:

corn chips
rice cakes
potato chips or potato flyers

Another important thing to know about the food rotating is that it helps build the immune system.