Health & Wellness

Frankenfish Is Swimming Its Way to Your Dinner Plate (Unless It’s Stopped)

Posted on Jan 22, 2013 in Clean Eating, GMO, Health & Wellness | 0 comments

Photo credit: AquaBounty

Photo credit: AquaBounty

I learned about AquaBounty‘s genetically engineered (GE) salmon a couple months ago and was alarmed to find out that the FDA may approve it and that the first man-made animal (salmon in this case) could wind up on our dinner plates. Given all the problems with genetically modified organism (GMO or GM) and GE foods and the health risks and damage that GM/GE foods have already done, it concerns me that the FDA continues to allow GM/GE foods in our already “dirty” food supply.

To make matters worse, if AquaBounty’s “frankenfish” GE salmon makes it to our grocer’s fish counter, we won’t even know it because, as of this writing, there are no federal laws requiring the labeling of GM/GE foods (your only defense is to buy organic foods and wild-caught fish).

In November 2012, the voters of California had the opportunity to require GMO labeling, but the campaign budget against Prop 37, which was backed by companies such as Monsanto, far outweighed the budget in support of Prop 37 and the proposition failed to pass. California voters were wooed by slick advertising and duped into thinking Prop 37 was a bad thing. How can protecting your health and a right to know be a bad thing? Sure, higher prices, but health is far more important than money!

I understand one of the arguments for GM/GE foods, which is there isn’t enough food to meet the growing demand to feed everyone and with a growing population it’s bound to get worse. Of course, population control is another matter all in of itself and one that needs to be addressed on a global scale in order to control and slow population growth, but I don’t want to digress into that problem. Let’s stick with the one on hand — Frankenfish!

I’m very concerned about the health impact of GE salmon. We already know that Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller and GM corn can cause breast cancer and organ damage. There’s a host of other studies that show the negative health impact of GM/GE foods; and researchers, scientists and food advocates have been speaking up on the dangers and side effects of GMOs. Yet, our grocery store shelves are full of GM/GE foods.

The FDA is accepting public comment through February 25, 2013 on AquaBounty’s GE salmon (docket number FDA-2011-N-0899-0002). You can submit a comment at:

To learn more about AquaBounty’s GE salmon and the FDA’s pending approval, read “Are You Ready for Frankenfish?”

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Detoxification and (Crazy Sexy) Cleanse

Posted on Dec 3, 2012 in Health & Wellness, Nutrition | 0 comments

green juice

I’ve been wanting to do a cleanse for more than a year now. Sadly, I haven’t done one yet. But today that’s all changing. Today, I put the stake in the ground and embarked on my first cleanse!

The reason it’s taken me so long is, first, I didn’t think I could give up my daily morning ritual of coffee or  my nightly dose of sugar. After dinner, I loved eating cookies or other sweets. But I gave up these two vices on January 10th of this year when my breast surgeon said to me those three frightening words you never want to hear “you have cancer.”

I also wasn’t sure I could go a whole day without eating solid food and only consuming liquids (I’m still worried about this portion of the cleanse so I’ll most likely limit it to once a week or maybe only twice through the cleanse).

There’s also the detox portion of feeling ill due to the toxins being released and eliminated from your body. Hopefully, it’s not too bad for me since I eat a pretty clean diet now and do my best at keeping chemicals and toxins out of my home and yard.

However, since heavy metals and other toxins accumulate over years we all have toxic build up in our bodies. My toxic metal test showed that I have elevated levels of lead and mercury. The latter most likely due to the silver dental fillings I had since childhood (I’ve since had them removed).

And lastly, one of the other challenges to starting this cleanse and detoxification was picking which one. Since there are so many different types and ways to cleanse and detoxify, it was a bit overwhelming for me to know which one was right for me. Enter, Crazy Sexy Cleanse…


Kris Carr’s 21-day Crazy Sexy Cleanse

Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Diet

I’ve decided to do Kris Carr‘s 21-day cleanse from her book Crazy Sexy Diet (it’s a MUST-READ for any wellness junkie). But I’m doing it with some additional detoxification elements that my naturopathic doctor prescribed to me. They are as follows: Two drops, twice a day of a tincture he specifically prepared for me (based on my needs); drinking BioCleanse Plus (provides liver support to aid in the detoxification process) from BioGenesis; and alternating between Bikram Yoga twice a week and far infrared sauna, also twice a week, to sweat out impurities and toxins, which further helps detoxify my body.

I’ve never done far infrared sauna, so that should be interesting and I’ve only done Bikram yoga once before. I loved it, but I thought I was going to die! It certainly is an experience. Even though I loved the experience, I think it scared me a bit because I haven’t done it since that first time, but I’m going to commit to twice a week starting today.

What I really love about Carr’s cleanse is it’s flexible and not rigid. I love her spirit and guidance. She knows how to give you the info and the tools; but at the same time, she teaches you to embark on the cleanse with openness and forgiveness. The forgiveness part is a huge help. Especially for me since I’ve always been an all or nothing type of gal. Do it perfect or don’t do it at all. Yep, I was all about “work hard, play hard,” which I’ve since realized is so unhealthy. It’s that mentality and stressful way of life that most likely was a contributing factor in me getting cancer (IMHO).

During this cleanse it’s my hope that I’m able to try out some of Carr’s recipes in Crazy Sexy Diet. My challenge is that I really don’t like to cook and have never really been a recipe person, but I need to expand my oh so limited menu and embrace new and healthy dishes (preferably plant-based dishes). And if I’m successful then I’ve decided to reward myself at the end of the cleanse and treat myself to Carr’s new book Crazy Sexy Kitchen. It will be a real treat because she’s my wellness hero!

“Crazy Sexy” 21-day cleanse and detoxification, here I come!

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Spike Your Smoothies With Superfoods: Organic Acai & Raw Cacao Powders from Navitas Naturals

Posted on Oct 21, 2012 in Clean Eating, Health & Wellness, Nutrition, Smoothies | 0 comments

Navitas Naturals Organic Acai and Raw Cacao Powders

For many years I was fooling myself thinking I was living a healthy life. Sure, I exercised regularly, ate healthy foods and took my daily supplements by drinking a nutritional protein drink. However, it wasn’t until getting diagnosed with breast cancer in January of this year that I truly looked at how healthy I was and wasn’t. I came to the realization that I was in serious need of a diet and health regimen reboot.

I’m at the beginning of this journey, but one thing I just starting doing is upping my antioxidant intake by adding Organic Acai Powder to my morning protein drink and Organic Raw Cacao Powder to my evening protein drink, both made by Navitas Naturals.

I just started doing it this past week and was so excited about getting to taste chocolate again that I had to blog about this heavenly healthy cacao product that’s filled with antioxidants and magnesium. Two really important elements in my new cancer-fighting diet. What’s great about Navitas Naturals’ Organic Raw Cacao Powder is that it’s raw and contains no sugar!

Since sugar feeds cancer cells, I nixed all sugar from my diet back in January, but before January I was a big sweets eater. I loved eating chocolate brownies, cakes, muffins, cookies, ice cream (made with coconut or rice milk, not dairy), etc. I thought I was being “healthy” about it and would buy what I call the “healthy junk food” from the cookie, cake and ice cream sections of Whole Foods (just because it’s at Whole Foods and has organic ingredients, does not mean it’s healthy and good for you).

Also, if I was going to eat sweets then I would cut back on my caloric intake, which usually meant skipping lunch or eating a very small lunch (and I almost never ate breakfast until this year…see, thought I was healthy but I wasn’t at all because breakfast is the most important meal of the day).

In January, I started eating three meals a day and cut out all sugar and my daily morning coffee ritual. It was extremely challenging, but within a matter of two weeks the sugar cravings went away and I actually started getting hungry in the morning, which I had never been before. Once I got over that hump, I had confidence that I could survive without eating sweets. But that’s not to say I didn’t miss them a little bit, which is why I was so thrilled to discover Navitas Naturals’ Organic Acai Powder and Organic Raw Cacao Powder. Now I’m able to enjoy the taste of berry and chocolate smoothies without the cancer-feeding sugar!

Benefits of  Two Superfoods: Acai & Cacao

Navitas Naturals Organic Acai and Raw Cacao Powders

Navitas Naturals Organic Acai Powder (top left), Acai berries (bottom left), Cacao plant (top right), Navitas Naturals Organic Raw Cacao Powder (bottom right) — photos provided from Navitas Naturals’ website

Organic Raw Cacao

The reason chocolate is unhealthy is not from cacao, it’s from the processing and additives. Organic raw cacao is actually very healthy because it’s packed with antioxidants and essential minerals, including magnesium, sulfur, calcium, potassium, manganese, zinc, iron and copper. Magnesium is a very important mineral that has shown to play a role in cancer risk and prevention.

A magnesium deficiency increases cancer risk, but sufficient intake of magnesium can reduce one’s risk of cancer. A recent study indicated that magnesium may reduce colon cancer risk. Magnesium has many functions in the body, one of them is that it is required for the detoxification process and glutathione (your body’s master antioxidant) synthesis.

Of course, getting magnesium from whole foods is the best source, but you have to consume the right foods and a lot of them. With today’s dirty food supply and the nutrient deficiencies in today’s fruits and vegetable compared to the fruits and vegetables 50 years ago, supplementing is good insurance to making sure your body is getting the proper amounts of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids and trace minerals.

Organic Acai

Acai (ah-SAH’-ee) is a dark berry from the Amazon rainforest and is packed with polyphenols, resveratrol, antioxidants, omega fatty acids, trace minerals and essential amino acids.

One study showed that “extracts from acai berries triggered a self-destruct response in up to 86 percent of leukemia cells tested,” according to Stephen Talcott, an assistant professor with UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, who conducted the study. Of course, more studies need to be done to further validate this, but Dr. Talcott’s findings are very promising.

As with all fruits and vegetables, it’s best to eat them right after picking to reap the full nutritional benefits (grow your own or buy local when possible). But with acai, since most of us don’t live in the Amazon rainforest the next best thing is having it as a powder, such as the Organic Acai Powder from Navitas Naturals, which ensures maximum benefit through its processing procedures.

According to its website it says that “due to the delicate nature of the berry, the fruit is transported immediately after harvest where it is hand-inspected for quality. The whole berries are then freeze-dried and low temperature milled to ensure maximum nutrient content, resulting in a powder that is both nutrient-rich and easily integrated into your favorite recipes.”

If you’re looking to up your antioxidant intake, give Navitas Naturals’ Organic Acai Powder, Organic Raw Cacao Powder or one of their other fantastic products a try.

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