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What You Can Learn About Your Health by Analyzing

the Color and Smell of Your Urine

By Dr. Mercola
Urine can reveal important information about your body's waste elimination process, providing clues about your
overall health status.
Your kidneys serve to filter excess water and water-soluble wastes out of your blood, getting rid of toxins and
things that would otherwise build up and cause you to become ill. Many things from excess protein and
sugar to bacteria and yeast may make their way into your urine.
Instead of ignoring your urine and dashing back to whatever important activity having to pee interrupted, take
this golden opportunity to become familiar with your "normal."
If you notice changes in the way your urine looks or smells, the cause might be something as benign as what
you had for dinner last night, such as beets or asparagus. Or, your astuteness may potentially alert you to a
serious condition.
If you suspect you have a urinary tract problem, you should consult your physician. One of the first things he or
she is likely to do is a urine test. Urine tests have been around for more than 6,000 years 1 and are easy,
noninvasive tools for quickly assessing your health status 2.

Minding Your Pees and Cues

In your lifetime, your kidneys filter more than one million gallons of water, enough to fill a small lake. Amazingly,
one kidney can handle the task perfectly well. In fact, if you lose a kidney, your remaining kidney can increase
in size by 50 percent within two months, to take over the job of both. 3
Urine is 95 percent water and five percent urea, uric acid, minerals, salts, enzymes, and various substances
that would cause problems if allowed to accumulate in your body 4. Normal urine is clear and has a straw yellow
color, caused by a bile pigment called urobilin.
As with your stool, your urine changes color depending on what foods you eat, what medications and
supplements you take, how much water you drink, how active you are, and the time of the day.
But some diseases can also change the color and other characteristics of your urine, so it's important to be
alert and informed. With so many variables, you can't always be sure of what's causing any particular urine
characteristic, short of laboratory testing. However, urine's character gives you some clues to potential
problems that may be developing, giving you time to do something about it.
The following chart outlines some of the most common color variations for urine and their possible origins. The
majority of the time, color changes resulting from foods, medications, supplements, or simply dehydration. But
there are certain signs that warrant concern.


Does Your Urine Smell Like Roses?

If you're a woman from ancient Rome and your urine smells like roses, you've probably been drinking
turpentine. This is a high price to pay to woo your suitor with pleasant-smelling pee, as turpentine may kill you!
Short of drinking turpentine, there are many common substances that may alter the way your urine smells,
which is why it's helpful to know what's normal. Urine reflects all of the inner workings of your body and
contains a wide variety of compounds and metabolic by-products. Some dogs can actually "smell cancer" in
human urine6.
Urine doesn't typically have a strong smell, but if yours smells pungent (like ammonia), you could have an
infection or urinary stones, or you may simply be dehydrated. Dehydration causes your urine to be more
concentrated and may have a stronger smell than normal, as do high-protein foods like meat and eggs.
Menopause, some sexually transmitted diseases, and certain metabolic disorders may also increase the
ammonia smell7. Here are some of the more common reasons your urine's odor may change:

Medications or supplements

Certain genetic conditions, such as Maple Syrup Urine Disease, which causes urine to smell
sickeningly sweet8
Certain foods most notably asparagus. Asparagus is notorious for causing a foul, eggy or "cabbagy"
stench that results from a sulfur compound called methyl mercaptan (also found in garlic and skunk
secretions). Only 50 percent of people can smell asparagus pee because they have the required gene.
Cutting off the tips of asparagus will reportedly prevent the pungent-smelling pee...but of course, this is
the tastiest part!
Urinary tract infections
Uncontrolled diabetes is known to cause your urine to have a sweet or fruity or, less commonly, a
yeasty smell. In the past, doctors diagnosed diabetes by pouring urine into sand to see if it was sweet
enough to attract bugs. Other physicians just dipped a finger in and took a taste. Fortunately, today's
physicians have access to far more elegant diagnostic tools.

When You Feel the Urge to Go, GO

Urinary frequency is also important. Peeing six to eight times per day is "average." You might go more or less
often than that, depending on how much water you drink and how active you are. Increased frequency can be
caused by an overactive bladder (involuntary contractions), caffeine, a urinary tract infection (UTI), interstitial
cystitis, benign prostate enlargement, diabetes, or one of a handful of neurological diseases. 9
It is important to pee when you feel the urge. Delaying urination can cause bladder overdistension like
overstretching a Slinky such that it can't bounce back. You may habitually postpone urination if you find
bathroom breaks inconvenient at work, or if you have Paruresis (also known as Shy Bladder Syndrome,

Bashful Bladder, Tinkle Terror, or Pee Anxiety), the fear of urinating in the presence of others. Seven percent of
the public suffers from this condition.10

How Much Water Should You Drink?

I don't subscribe to the commonly quoted rule of drinking six to eight glasses of water every day. Your body is
capable of telling you what it needs and when it needs it. Once your body has lost one to two percent of its
total water, your thirst mechanism kicks in to let you know it's time to drink so thirst should be your guide. Or
course, if you are outside on a hot, dry day or exercising vigorously, you'll require more water than usual but
even then, drinking when you feel thirsty will allow you to remain hydrated.
As you age, your thirst mechanism tends to work less efficiently. Therefore, older adults will want to be sure to
drink water regularly, in sufficient quantity to maintain pale yellow urine. As long as you aren't taking riboflavin
(vitamin B2, found in most multivitamins), which turns urine bright "fluorescent" yellow, then your urine should
be quite pale. If you have kidney or bladder stones or a urinary tract infection, increase your water intake

You and Your Urinary System

You should now have a pretty good idea of how important it is to familiarize yourself with what's normal for your
pee. Urine is a window into the inner workings of your body and can function as an "early warning system" for
detecting health problems.
The most important factor in the overall health of your urinary tract is drinking plenty of pure, fresh water every
day. Inadequate hydration is the number one risk factor for kidney stones, as well as being important for
preventing UTIs. To avoid overly frequent bathroom breaks, stay hydrated but not overhydrated. Drink
whenever you're thirsty, but don't feel you have to drink eight glasses of water per day, every day. If you're
getting up during the night to pee, stop drinking three to four hours before bedtime.
Limit your caffeine and alcohol intake, which can irritate the lining of your bladder. Make sure your diet has
plenty of magnesium, and avoid sugar (including fructose and soda) and non-fermented soy products due to
their oxalate content. Finally, don't hold it. As soon as you feel the urge to go, go! Delaying urination is
detrimental to the health of your bladder due to overdistension.

Why Medicine Wont Allow Cancer to Be Cured

By Dr. Mercola
Imagine a commercial plane crashed and there were some fatalities involved. You can be sure that would make
the headline of every major newspaper. Well, we have the equivalent of 8-10 planes crashing EVERY DAY with
everyone on board dying from cancer.
Nearly two million Americans are diagnosed with cancer every yearone person out of three will be hit with a
cancer diagnosis at some time in their lives, in spite of the massive technological advances over the past halfcentury.
Western medicine is no closer to finding a "cancer cure," while cancer has grown into a worldwide epidemic of
staggering proportions. The statistics speak for themselves:

In the early 1900s, one in 20 people developed cancer

In the 1940s, one in 16 people developed cancer

In the 1970s, it was one in 10

Today, it's one in three!

According to the CDC, about 1,660,290 (1.66 million) new cancer cases are expected to be diagnosed in
20131. If overall death rates are falling, why are incidence rates still on the rise? The answer is simple: the 40year "war on cancer" has been a farce.
The cancer epidemic is a dream for Big Pharma, and their campaigns to silence cancer cures have been fierce,
which is a tale well told in the documentary film featured above, Cancer: Forbidden Cures.

The Cancer Machine

Please understand that cancer is big business. The cancer industry is spending virtually nothing of its multibillion dollar resources on effective prevention strategies, such as dietary guidelines, exercise and obesity
education. Instead, it pours its money into treating cancer, not preventing or curing it.
Why would they shoot their cash cow? If they can keep the well-oiled Cancer Machine running, they will
continue to make massive profits on chemotherapy drugs, radiotherapy, diagnostic procedures and surgeries.
The typical cancer patient spends $50,000 fighting the disease. Chemotherapy drugs are among the most
expensive of all treatments, many ranging from $3,000 to $7,000 for a one-month supply.
If the cancer industry allows a cure, then their patient base goes away. It makes more sense to keep a steady
stream of cancer patients alive, but sick and coming back for more. How did this societal monster come about?
The featured documentary is enormously informative. It details how the pharmaceutical industry partnered with
the American Medical Association (AMA) in an ingenious plan to overtake the medical system in four swift, easy
steps, back in the early 1900s. In a nutshell, it went something like this:

International bankers that own the drug and chemical companies gained control over the medical
education system over 100 years ago.


They gave grants to the AMA and leading medical schools in exchange for seats on their board and
the ability to control policy.


Finally, they cleverly engineered their control of virtually every federal regulatory agency relating to the
practice of medicine.

'Don't You DARE Cure Anyone!'

In spite of the enormous amounts of money funneled into cancer research today, two out of three cancer
patients will be dead within five years after receiving all or part of the standard cancer treatment trinity
surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. This is not too surprising when you consider that two of the three are
carcinogenic themselves! One study estimated that chemotherapy benefits about one of every 20 people
receiving it.
Over the last hundred years, a number of natural cancer treatments have been developed and used
successfully to treat patients in the US and other countries. All have been vehemently discounted, silenced,
and pushed under the rug by the medical monopoly, with physicians and researchers attacked, smeared, sent
to prison, and professionally ruined for daring to defy the medical establishment.

To this day, with respect to credibility in medicine, "quack" is synonymous with "competition."
In order to protect the medical monopoly, any viable natural treatment is met with massive opposition by the
pharmaceutical and medical industries. Drug companies have no interest in natural agents that they cannot
patent, because they interfere with their revenue stream. They will goand have goneto extreme measures
to prevent the truth about effective natural treatments (competitive threats) from reaching the public.
The FDA is now, thanks to PDUFA, primarily funded by the drug companies and is complicit in this process.
They restrict competition in the guise of protecting the public, when the reality is they are protecting the profits
of the drug companies.

My Top 12 Cancer Prevention Strategies

There is so much you can do to lower your risk for cancer. But please don't wait until you get the diagnosis
you have to take preventative steps NOW. It's much easier to prevent cancer than to treat it, once it takes hold.
I believe you can virtually eliminate your risk of cancer and chronic disease, and radically improve your
chances of recovering from cancer if you currently have it, by following these relatively simple strategies.





Food Preparation: Eat at least one-third of your food raw. Avoid frying or charbroiling; boil, poach or
steam your foods instead. Consider adding cancer-fighting whole foods, herbs, spices and supplements
to your diet, such as broccoli, curcumin and resveratrol. To learn more about how these anti-angiogenetic
foods fight cancer, please see our previous article: "Dramatically Effective New Natural Way to Starve
Cancer and Obesity."
Carbohydrates and Sugar: Reduce or eliminate processed foods,sugar/fructose and grain-based
foods from your diet. This applies to whole unprocessed organic grains as well, as they tend to rapidly
break down and drive up your insulin level. The evidence is quite clear that if you want to avoid cancer, or
you currently have cancer, you absolutely MUST avoid all forms of sugar, especially fructose, which feeds
cancer cells and promotes their growth. Make sure your total fructose intake is around 25 grams daily,
including fruit.
Protein and Fat: Consider reducing your protein levels to one gram per kilogram of lean body weight.
It would be unusual for most adults to need more than 100 grams of protein and most likely close to half
of that amount. Replace excess protein with high-quality fats, such as organic eggs from pastured hens,
high-quality meats, avocados, and coconut oil.
GMOs: Avoid genetically engineered foods as they are typically treated with herbicides such as
Roundup (glyphosate), and likely to be carcinogenic. A French research team that has extensively studied
Roundup concluded it's toxic to human cells, and likely carcinogenic to humans. Choose fresh, organic,
preferably locally grown foods.
Animal-Based Omega-3 fats: Normalize your ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fats by taking a highquality krill oil and reducing your intake of processed vegetable oils.
Natural Probiotics: Optimizing your gut flora will reduce inflammation and strengthen your immune
response. Researchers have found a microbe-dependent mechanism through which some cancers mount
an inflammatory response that fuels their development and growth. They suggest that inhibiting
inflammatory cytokines might slow cancer progression and improve the response to chemotherapy.
Adding naturally fermented food to your daily diet is an easy way to prevent cancer or speed recovery.
You can always add a high-quality probiotic supplement as well, but naturally fermented foods are the


Exercise: Exercise lowers insulin levels, which creates a low sugar environment that discourages the
growth and spread of cancer cells. In a three-month study, exercise was found to alter immune cells into a
more potent disease-fighting form in cancer survivors who had just completed chemotherapy.
Researchers and cancer organizations increasingly recommend making regular exercise a priority in
order to reduce your risk of cancer, and help improve cancer outcomes. Research has also found
evidence suggesting exercise can help trigger apoptosis (programmed cell death) in cancer cells. Ideally,

your exercise program should include balance, strength, flexibility, high intensity interval training (HIIT).
For help getting started, refer to my Peak Fitness Program.

Vitamin D: There is scientific evidence you can decrease your risk of cancer by more than half simply
by optimizing your vitamin D levels with appropriate sun exposure. Your serum level should hold steady at
50-70 ng/ml, but if you are being treated for cancer, it should be closer to 80-90 ng/ml for optimal benefit.
If you take oral vitamin D and have cancer, it would be very prudent to monitor your vitamin D blood levels
regularly, as well as supplementing your vitamin K2, as K2 deficiency is actually what produces the
symptoms of vitamin D toxicity. To learn more, please see my previous article: "What You Need to Know
About Vitamin K2, D and Calcium".


Sleep: Make sure you are getting enough restorative sleep. Poor sleep can interfere with your
melatonin production, which is associated with an increased risk of insulin resistance and weight gain,
both of which contribute to cancer's virility.
Exposure to Toxins: Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins like pesticides, herbicides,
household chemical cleaners, synthetic air fresheners and toxic cosmetics.
Exposure to Radiation: Limit your exposure and protect yourself from radiation produced by cell
phones, towers, base stations, and Wi-Fi stations, as well as minimizing your exposure from radiationbased medical scans, including dental x-rays, CT scans, and mammograms.
Stress Management: Stress from all causes is a major contributor to disease. Even the CDC states
that 85 percent of disease is driven by emotional factors. It is likely that stress and unresolved emotional
issues may be more important than the physical ones, so make sure this is addressed. My favorite tool for
resolving emotional challenges is Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT).

What to Do If You Already Have Cancer

Without a doubt the most powerful essential strategy I know of to treat cancer is to starve the cells by depriving
them of their food source. Unlike your body cells, which can burn carbs or fat for fuel, cancer cells have lost
that metabolic flexibility. Dr. Otto Warburg was actually given a Nobel Prize over 75 years ago for figuring this
out but virtually no oncologist actually uses this information.
You can review my recent interview with Dr. D'Agostino below for more details but integrating a ketogenic
diet with hyperbaric oxygen therapy which is deadly to cancer cells debilitated by starving them of their fuel
source would be the strategy I would recommend to my family if they were diagnosed with cancer

The Benefits of a Ketogenic Diet and Its Role in

Cancer Treatment
By Dr. Mercola
Could a ketogenic diet eventually be a "standard of care" drug-free treatment for cancer? Personally, I believe
it's absolutely crucial, for whatever type of cancer you're trying to address, and hopefully some day it will be
adopted as a first line of treatment.
A ketogenic diet calls for eliminating all but non-starchy vegetablecarbohydrates, and replacing them with
healthy fats and high-quality protein.

The premise is that since cancer cells need glucose to thrive, and carbohydrates turn into glucose in your body,
then lowering the glucose level in your blood though carb and protein restriction literally starves the cancer cells
into oblivion. Additionally, low protein intake tends to minimize the mTOR pathway that accelerates cell
This type of diet, in which you restrict all but non-starchy vegetable carbs and replace them with low to
moderate amounts of high-quality protein and high amounts of beneficial fat, is what I recommend for
everyone, whether you have cancer or not. It's a diet that will help optimize your weight and all chronic
degenerative disease. Eating this way will help you convert from carb burning mode to fat burning.
Dr. Thomas Seyfried is one of the leading pioneer academic researchers in promoting how to treat cancer
nutritionally. He's been teaching neurogenetics and neurochemistry as it relates to cancer treatment at Yale
University and Boston College for the past 25 years.
He's written over 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles and book chapters, and has also published a
book, Cancer as a Metabolic Disease: On the Origin, Management, and Prevention of Cancer.

Ketogenic Diet Accepted as First Line Approach for Epilepsy; Is Cancer Next?
The ketogenic diet has actually been used for managing seizures in children for quite some time. While Dr.
Seyfried and his team worked on brain cancer and epilepsy in mice, one of his students suggested
investigating whether or not a ketogenic diet might also be effective against tumors.
So, in the late '90s, they began dovetailing their work on ketogenic diets and epilepsy and cancer together,
eventually bringing them to a better understanding of how changing your whole-body metabolic state can be
effective in targeting and eliminating tumor cells.
Interestingly, clinical medicine has recognized the ketogenic diet as a valuable option in the treatment of
epilepsy since the late 90's.
"I served as the organizer for the Ketogenic Diet Special Interest Group at the American Epilepsy Society," Dr.
Seyfried says.
"We initially started as a small focus group with the folks from Johns Hopkins Medical School, where the diet
has had its greatest use and impact. And then we started to grow and substantially increase interest mainly
through the efforts of Jim Abrahams.
Jim started the Charlie Foundation for his son Charlie, who went through a near-death experience from
seizures and was rescued using ketogenic diets. His colleague, Meryl Streep, the famous movie actress,
became very involved in this.
Now the ketogenic diet is receiving considerable attention in the epilepsy community as a first line of approach.
Although this is still not widely accepted, I have to admit that the ketogenic diet is now recognized as an
important component for the management of refractory seizures in children."
According to Dr. Seyfried, the mechanism by which the ketogenic diet manages seizures is not nearly as clear
as the way the ketogenic diet manages cancer. This is ironic considering that it's barely known, let alone
applied, within oncology circles, while it's already a first line of treatment for epilepsy. In the case of cancer, it's
well-established that it's the glucose reduction that kills the cancer cells.

Cancer Is a Mitochondrial Metabolic Disease

Dr. Seyfried has developed a process called metabolic control analysis, which essentially analyzes the
metabolic flux through different pathways that occurs when you transition your body from one major fuel source
to another major fuel source, to maintain energy homeostasis in your body. Many believe or are under the
impression that cancer is primarily a genetic disease, but Dr. Seyfried dispels such notions.
"We're not going to make major advances in the management of cancer until it becomes recognized as a
metabolic disease. But in order to do that, you have to present a massive counterargument against the gene
theory of cancer," he says.
"One of the key issues here is that if you transplant the nucleus of a cancer cell into a normal cell, you don't get
cancer cells. You can actually get normal tissues and sometimes a whole normal organism from the nucleus of
a cancer cell. Now, if the tumors are being driven by driver genes all these kinds of mutations and things that
we hear about how is it possible that all of this is changed when you place this cancer nucleus into the
cytoplasm of a cell with normal mitochondria?
The gene theory cannot address this. It clearly argues strongly against the concept that genes are driving this
process. Actually, a very few people inherit genes that predispose them to cancer. Most people inherit genes
that prevent cancer. And those few genes that are inherited the germ line like the BRCA1 mutations, B53,
and a few other very rare cancers these inherited mutations appear to disrupt the function of the
According to Dr. Seyfried, the mitochondriathe main power generators in your cellsare the central point in
the origin of most cancers. Your mitochondria can be damaged not only by inherited mutations, thereby
increasing your risk for a particular type of cancer, such as the BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations that increase
your risk of breast and ovarian cancer. They can also be damaged by environmental factors, such as toxins
and radiation, both ionizing and non-ionizing. Over time, damage to your mitochondria can lead to dysfunction
and tumor formation.
"It's ultimately a disease of the mitochondrial energy metabolism, which is the origin of the disease," Dr.
Seyfried says. "[O]nce the mitochondria become dysfunctional or insufficient in ability, mutations will occur. The
drugs that have been developed based on the genome projects have been largely ineffective in providing longterm care and are associated with toxic effects. As long as the field continues to focus on that part of the
disease, which is a downstream epiphenomenon, there will be no major advances in the field simply because
that's not the relevant aspect of the disease."

Sugar Is the Primary Fuel for Most Cancers

Controlling your blood-glucose leptin and insulin levels through diet, exercise and emotional stress relief can be
one of the most crucial components to a cancer recovery program. These factors are also crucial in order to
prevent cancer in the first place.In 1931, the Nobel Prize was awarded to German researcher Dr. Otto Warburg,
who discovered that cancer cells have a fundamentally different energy metabolism compared to healthy cells,
and that malignant tumors tend to feed on sugar. More recently, researchers discovered that while cancer cells
feed on both glucose and fructose, pancreatic tumor cells use fructose specifically to divide and proliferate.
Dr. Seyfried's work confirms that sugar is the primary fuel for cancer, and that by restricting sugar and providing
an alternate fuel, namely fat, you can dramatically reduce the rate of growth of cancer. He explains:
"When we're dealing with glucose and [cancer] management, we know from a large number of studies that if
respiration of the tumor is ineffective, in order to survive, the cells must use an alternative source of energy,
which is fermentation. We know that glucose is the primary fuel for fermentation. Fermentation becomes a
primary energy-generating process in the tumor cell. By targeting the fuel for that process, we then have the
capability of potentially managing the disease."

The strategy Dr. Seyfried suggests is a low-carb, low to moderate protein, high-fat diet, which will effectively
lower your blood sugar. This is an easily measurable parameter that you can check using a diabetic blood
glucose meter. This type of diet, called a ketogenic diet, will also elevate ketone bodies, as fat is metabolized to
ketones that your body can burn in the absence of food. When combined with calorie restriction, the end result
will put your body in a metabolic state that is inhospitable to cancer cells.
"[Ketones] is a fat breakdown product that can replace glucose as a major fuel for many of the organs and
especially our brain," he says.
Tumor cells, however, cannot use ketone bodies because of their respiratory insufficiency. So the ketogenic
diet represents an elegant, non-toxic way to target and marginalize tumor cells. It also allows you to
dramatically lower your glucose levels, as the ketones will protect your body against any hypoglycemia that
might otherwise be induced by carb restriction.
"All of the newer cells in your body will be transitioned to these effective ketones, thereby preventing them from
damage from hypoglycemia. At the same time, the tumor cells are now marginalized and under tremendous
metabolic stress. It's a whole body therapyyou need to bring the whole body into this metabolic state," he
"We like to call it a new state of metabolic homeostasis: a state where ketones have reached the steady state
level in your blood and glucose has reached a steady lower level in your blood... If it's done right and
implemented right, it has powerful therapeutic benefits on the majority of people who suffer from various kinds
of cancers. Because all cancers have primarily the same metabolic defect."

For Cancer Protection, Reverse Your Glucose to Ketone Ratios

Dr. Seyfried uses ketones and glucose as the measures of this new metabolic state. The parameters
associated with an ideal state are ketone levels equal to or higher than the glucose level in your blood.
"There's a high ratio of glucose to ketones. But in a fasted or therapeutic state, this ratio is actually reversed.
Ketones can actually become higher than glucose," he says. "What they can do is they can get their blood
sugars down to 2.5 to 3 millimolar [equivalent to about 55-65 mg/dl], and then their ketones to up to 3 or 4
millimolar, where the ratio is now reversed. It's this state that now brings the body into this new physiology."
You can easily check your glucose levels at home, you'd need to work with a doctor to measure ketone levels
in your blood. Generally speaking, a fasting glucose under 100 mg/dl suggests that you're not insulin resistant,
while a level between 100-125 suggests you're either mildly insulin resistant or pre-diabetic. Here, Dr. Seyfried
recommends getting your glucose down to a steady level of about 55-65 mg/dl, which is about HALF of what's
conventionally considered "good" or "normal."
Blood ketones can be easily measured using the Medisense Precision Xtra blood glucose and ketone monitor
from Abbot Laboratory. As many pharmacies might not stock the meter (bar code #, 93815 80347), it might be
necessary to call Abbott directly (1-800-527 3339) to obtain the meter. According to Dr. Seyfried, the Precision
Xtra seems the most accurate of all the ones he's used.
It is important to mention, however, that the blood ketone strips are more expensive than the blood glucose
strips. Dr. Seyfried therefore recommends measuring your blood ketones every few days rather than 3x/day for
blood glucose. Although urine ketone measurement is a cheap way to assess ketones, urine ketone levels are
not always indicative of blood ketone levels. It is best if you can measure ketones from both blood and urine.
"I work with nutritionists and physicians," Dr. Seyfried says. "The problem with cancer patients is that many of
the practitioners are unfamiliar with this whole approach, so there's this tremendous gap. We have knowledge

of how to do this. We have patients willing to do it. But we lack professionals that are trained or even
understand the concepts of how to implement these kinds of approaches."
All of the guidelines are included in Dr. Seyfried's book, Cancer as Metabolic Disease, which is available on
Amazon. He's also published a couple of papers 1,2 that outline the guidelines and treatment strategies for
cancer patients. One caveat to consider is your use of medications, as you need to know what the adverse
effects might be if you use a medication at a particular dosage along with this kind of metabolic therapy.

The Importance of Intermittent Fasting

In my experience, the vast majority of people are adapted to burning carbs as their primary fuel, as opposed to
burning fat. One of the most effective strategies I know of to become a fat burner is to restrict your eating to
within a six- to eight-hour window, which means you're fasting for about 16-18 hours each day. This
upregulates the enzymes that are designed to burn fat as a fuel, and downregulates the glucose enzymes. This
kind of intermittent fasting plan can be a useful modality to help you make the transition to a ketogenic diet.
"That's the way it started in the clinic for children with epilepsy. Basically, the child is given a 24-hour and
sometimes 48-hour fast water only. And then the ketogenic diet is introduced in relatively measured and
small amounts," Dr. Seyfried says.
"Your body transitions naturally that way. Intermittent fasting is actually a very strong component of the
approach. A three-day fast is uncomfortable, but it's certainly doable. It gets your body into a new metabolic
state, and then you can apply these therapies. The hardest part, I think, of this fasting is the first three to four
days, depending on the individual and how many times they've done this.
That's basically trying to break your addiction to glucose. The removal of glucose from the brain elicits the
same kind of problems or events as you would if you were addicted to drugs, alcohol, or something like this.
You get malaise, headaches, nausea, lightheadedness. You get all the kinds of physiological effects that you
would get from withdrawal of any addicting substance. I look at glucose as an addictive substance. It's an
addictive metabolite. Your brain is comforted by having glucose; your body is comforted. And when you break
that glucose addiction, you have these particular feelings.
... Fasting certainly has remarkable health benefits to the body: strengthening the mitochondria network system
within the cells of your body. As long as the mitochondria of your cells remain healthy and functional, it's very
unlikely that cancer can develop under these particular states."
Unless you have a very serious disease, I believe it is best for most people to implement intermittent fasting
slowly over six to eight weeks rather than a three-day complete fast. You begin by not eating for three hours
before you go to bed, and then gradually extend the time you eat breakfast until you have skipped breakfast
entirely and your first meal of the day is at lunch time. Of course, you are only consuming non-starchy
vegetables for carbs, low to moderate protein and high-quality fats. One of the things I've noticed is that once
you've made the transition from burning carbs to burning fat as your primary fuel, the desire for junk foods and
sugar just disappears like magic.

The Potential Role of Protein in Cancer Formation

Glutamine--one of the most common amino acids found in proteinsis another interesting aspect of cancer
that Dr. Seyfried is still investigating. In his opinion, most oncologists who do cancer metabolism recognize that
sugar (both glucose and fructose) is the prime fuel for driving tumor growth. However, mounting research also
indicates that glucose and glutamine together act powerfully and synergistically on the growth of tumor cells.
"These two fuels work together in concert to provide a continual growth," he says.

One of my early mentors was Dr. Ron Rosedale. He taught me, about 20 years ago, about the importance of
insulin control and then, more recently, about the importance of reducing protein intake, for this very reason.
Most Americans likely eat far more protein than they really need, and this excess could be a factor in cancer.
The Paleo approach makes sense on many levels, especially with regards to intermittent fasting and lowering
your glucose levels. The Paleo approach is very clear about reducing grains and any food that raises your
blood sugar. But there are, of course, two other macronutrients left: fat and protein.
Many Paleo followers are overly concerned about getting high amounts of protein, which could increase your
glutamine and branched chained amino acid levels, which in turn tend to activate mTOR. In some, that could
be problematic. According to Dr. Rosedale's research, the pathway known as the mammalian target of
rapamycin (mTOR), is controlled by lowering your protein intake. This pathway may be another metabolic
pathway that helps control and prevent cancer growth.

Calorie Restriction Is a Key Part of the Equation

Dr. Seyfried, however, is more cautious in his evaluation of mTOR and reducing protein for cancer prevention.
In his view, the most important aspect of cancer prevention and treatment is the intermittent fasting, or overall
calorie restriction, which includes eating less of everything, period. But while calories from carbohydrates
should be virtually eliminated, calories from protein just need to be reduced, while most need to increase their
intake of healthful fats to get a more ideal ratio of fat to protein. As far as the specific types of fats
recommended, Dr. Seyfried uses medium-chain triglycerides, i.e. coconut oil, butter, macadamia nuts, and
other types of saturated fats, which is what I've long recommended as well. "The saturated fats are converted
to ketones much more readily than polyunsaturated fats," he explains.
So, keep in mind that for cancer prevention and treatment, the actual calorie restriction is an important part of
the equation:
"We did some studies on this with our model of glioma... The mTOR in our model was not dramatically
changed by these metabolic therapies. But I know others have reported it, and this could be an important
component for certain other kinds of cancers. But my limited work with this did not demonstrate this to be a
major issue, at least in the glioma model that we looked at. We showed that you could give animals a high-fat,
low-protein diet, as much as they want (zero carbs in this diet), and their blood glucose was just as high or
higher than the mice that were eating the protein-carb diet.
It was more or less related to the total consumption of calories. Most calories boil down to glucose. Proteins will
be metabolized to glucose. Carbs are metabolized to glucose; fats are not... We don't get any therapeutic
benefit either in epilepsy or cancer when we allow the animals or people to eat as much of these high-fat diets
as they want. We get no therapeutic benefit.
Therapeutic benefit comes from the restriction of the calories in the diet. The ketogenic diet or a low-carb, lowprotein diet is simply a way to take the sting out of a therapeutic fast. Because as long as the glucose and
ketones can get into the metabolic range (and you can do it with eating small amounts of a high-fat diet rather
than therapeutic fasting), then that just makes people feel a little better about how they're doing this rather than
feeling that I'm starving to death."

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

I recently interviewed Dr. D'Agostino who is another cancer as a metabolic disease researcher. He published a
recent paper3that shows a phenomenal synergy with a ketogenic diet and the use of hyperbaric oxygen for
cancers that have metastasized. These types of cancers are notoriously difficult to treat. I would strongly
encourage anyone struggling with this challenge to consider this type of therapy.

More Information

From my perspective, it's nothing short of medical malpractice and negligence to fail to integrate this type of
dietary strategy into a patient's cancer treatment plan (along with optimizing vitamin D). A ketogenic diet along
with intermittent fasting can be easily integrated into whatever cancer treatment plan you decide to follow.
Personally, I believe it's absolutely crucial, no matter what type of cancer you're trying to address.
That said, remember that a ketogenic diet, in which you replace carbs with low to moderate amounts of protein
and high amounts of beneficial fat, like avocado, coconut oil, butter, olive oil and macadamia nuts is
recommended for everyone, whether you have cancer or not. It's a diet that will help optimize your weight and
health overall, as eating this way will help you convert from carb burning mode, to fat burning.
To get more specifics about using a ketogenic diet and calorie restriction for the treatment of cancer, I highly
recommend picking up Dr. Seyfried's book, Cancer as a Metabolic Disease. You can also review his
papers,4,5 which outline the guidelines and treatment strategies for cancer patients. If you're a cancer patient,
I'd recommend printing them out for your oncologist.
He also has a Facebook page6 for his book, and a website connected to the Boston College Biology
Department7 where you can get more information about his work

The Many Health Benefits of Avocado

By Dr. Mercola
You probably know that avocados are an excellent source of healthful fats, but this whole food may also have
other unique health benefits.
To learn more, the Hass Avocado Board (HAB) is supporting clinical research to investigate various health
effects of avocado consumption, particularly its benefits for cardiovascular disease, weight management,
diabetes, and its ability to enhance your body's absorption of nutrients.
The first of these HAB-supported studies was published in November, 2012. 1The small UCLA-led pilot study
found that eating one-half of a fresh medium Hass avocado with a hamburger (made with 90 percent lean beef)
significantly inhibited the production of the inflammatory compound Interleukin-6 (IL-6), compared to eating a
burger without fresh avocado.
According to lead author David Heber, MD, PhD, the findings offer "promising clues" about avocado's ability to
benefit vascular function and heart health. As reported by Medical News Today:2
"The researchers observed a significant peak (approximately a 70 percent increase), of IL-6 four hours after
the plain burger was eaten, but less effect on IL-6 (approximately a 40 percent increase) over the same time
period when fresh avocado was eaten with the burger.
Additionally, the study found that when fresh Hass avocado was eaten with the burger it did not increase
triglyceride levels beyond what was observed after eating the burger alone, despite the extra calories and fat
from the fresh avocado...
The pilot study also reported that the difference in peripheral arterial blood flow (the movement of blood to
different parts of the body, as measured by PAT), a predictor of vascular health, after eating the hamburger
meal compared to the hamburger-fresh avocado meal was approaching statistical significance...
PAT scores significantly decreased (signifying reduced blood flow) only after the plain burger was eaten
(approximately a 27 percent drop, on average) compared to a burger with fresh avocado (approximately a 4
percent drop, on average, signifying less reduction in blood flow)."

Avocados A Real 'Super Food'

Avocados, which are actually classified as a fruit, are rich in monounsaturated fat that is easily burned for
energy. Personally, I eat a whole avocado virtually every day, which I usually put in my salad. This increases
my healthy fat and calorie intake without seriously increasing my protein or carbohydrate intake. (See Nutrition

Facts Panel below.) It is also very high in potassium and will help balance your vitally important potassium to
sodium ratio.
As I've mentioned before, eliminating grain carbs is one of the best ways to support your health and maintain
your weight, but when you cut down on carbs, you need to increase your intake of healthy fats. Avocados are
an excellent source, along with organic raw butter, coconut oil, and organic pastured eggs, just to name a few.

There's also evidence suggesting that limiting your intake of protein can be helpful for long-term good health
and the prevention of cancer. At the very least, most people are consuming far too much poor-quality protein,
such as beef and animal products from livestock raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs). Here
again, if you cut down on protein, you need to replace lost calories with healthy fats such as avocados, coconut
oil, olives, olive oil, butter and nuts.
Overall, most people would do well to get upwards of 50-70 percent fat in their diet (along with high amounts of
vegetable carbs, moderate-to-low amounts of high-quality protein, and very little, if any, carbs). According to the
California Avocado Commission, a medium Hass avocado contains about 22.5 grams of fat, two-thirds of which
is monounsaturated. They're also very low in fructose, which is yet another boon, and provide close to 20
essential health-boosting nutrients, including:


Potassium (more than twice the amount found in a banana)

Vitamin E


Folic acid

Avocados are one of the safest fruits you can buy conventionally-grown,and most experts do not believe you
need to purchase organic ones. Their thick skin protects the inner fruit from pesticides. Additionally, it has been
rated as one of the safest commercial crops in terms of pesticide exposure, 3 so there's no real need to spend
extra money on organic avocados, unless you can afford it.

The Many Health Benefits of Avocados

Avocados have a long list of potential health benefits. For example, besides its anti-inflammatory properties,
previous research from Japan suggests this powerful fruit may also help protect against liver damage. In one
study,4laboratory rats were fed avocado and 22 other fruits. The rats were then given D-galactosamine, a
potent liver toxin that interferes with cell synthesis and results in cell death. The rats fed avocado suffered the
least amount of liver damage. The chemical-induced liver injuries resemble those caused by viruses, so the
researchers suggested avocado could potentially offer support in the treatment of viral hepatitis. According to
one lead author Hirokazu Kawagishi, Ph.D:
"Besides offering taste and nutrition, avocados seem to improve liver health. People should eat more of them."
Due to its beneficial raw fat content, avocado enables your body to more efficiently absorb fat-soluble nutrients
(such as alpha- and beta-carotene and lutein) in other foods eaten in conjunction.
One 2005 study,5 found that adding avocado to salad allowed the volunteers to absorb three to five times more
carotenoids antioxidant molecules, which help protect your body against free radical damage. Other research
has found that avocados:

Contain compounds that appear to inhibit and destroy oral cancer cells. 6 7

Can help improve lipid profiles in both healthy individuals and those with non optimized HDL/
total cholesterol levels). In one study,8 healthy individuals saw a 16 percent decrease of serum total
cholesterol level following a one-week long diet high in monounsaturated fat from avocados. In those with
elevated cholesterol levels, the avocado diet resulted in a 17 percent decrease of serum total cholesterol,
and a 22 percent decrease of both LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides, along with an 11 percent increase of
the so-called "good" HDL cholesterol.

The Best Way to Peel an Avocado

Did you know there are many ways to skin an avocado? Well, there are, and how you de-skin your fruit can
have a bearing on the nutrients you get from it. In 2010, the California Avocado Commission issued guidelines
for getting the most out of your avocado by peeling it the right way: 9
"California-grown avocados contain 11 carotenoids. According to USDA's Agricultural Research Service,
avocados contain a complex package of phytonutrients, including carotenoids that may provide numerous
health benefits. Carotenoids appear to protect humans against certain cancers, heart disease and age-related
macular degeneration.
The UCLA research showed that in California avocados, the greatest concentration of beneficial
carotenoids is in the dark green fruit of the avocado closest to the peel.
'The Commission's public relations outreach to encourage consumers to 'nick and peel' their California
avocados and to eat that dark green area of the fruit has resulted in 33 million consumer impressions,' said Jan
DeLyser, vice president of marketing for CAC. 'This 'nick and peel' message is also valuable information for
produce departments to share with their shoppers.'"
To preserve the area with the greatest concentration of antioxidants, you basically want to peel the avocado
with your hands, as you would a banana:

First, cut the avocado length-wise, around the seed


Holding each half, twist them in the opposite directions to separate them from the seed


Remove the seed


Cut each half, lengthwise


Next, using your thumb and index finger, simply peel the skin off each piece

How to Get More Avocado into Your Diet

While avocado is commonly eaten raw, on salad or alone, with nothing but a dash of Himalayan salt and some
ground pepper, for example, there are many other ways to include avocado in your diet. For example, you can
use avocado in the following ways:

Use as a fat replacement in baking. Simply replace the fat called for (such as oil, butter or shortening)
with an equal amount of avocado
Use as a first food for babies, in lieu of processed baby food
For hundreds of unique recipes that include avocadofrom salads to dessert whip and everything in
between check out the California Avocado Commission's website 10

The 9 Foods You Should Never Eat

By Dr. Mercola
Many foods have been heavily promoted as being healthy when they are nothing more than pernicious junk
foods. In the featured article, Clean Plates1founder Jared Koch shared his list of nine staple foods that are far
less "good for you" than you've been led to believe.
Here, I expand on the selections that are mentioned in the featured article.

1. Canned Tomatoes
Many leading brands of canned foods contain BPA -- a toxic chemical linked to reproductive abnormalities,
neurological effects, heightened risk of breast and prostate cancers, diabetes, heart disease and other serious
health problems. According to Consumer Reports' testing, just a couple of servings of canned food can exceed
the safety limits for daily BPA exposure for children.
High acidity a prominent characteristic of tomatoes causes BPA to leach into your food. To avoid this
hazardous chemical, avoid canned foods entirely and stick to fresh fruits and vegetables, or switch over to
brands that use glass containers insteadespecially for acidic foods like tomatoes.

2. Processed Meats
As Koch warns, processed deli meats like salami, ham, and roast beef are typically made with meats from
animals raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs).
This means they're given growth hormones, antibiotics and other veterinary drugs, and raised in deplorable
conditions that promote disease, these meats are also filled with sodium nitrite (a commonly used preservative
and antimicrobial agent that also adds color and flavor) and other chemical flavorings and dyes.
Nitrites can be converted into nitrosamines in your body, which are potent cancer-causing chemicals. Research
has linked nitrites to higher rates of colorectal, stomach and pancreatic cancer. But that's not all. Most
processed deli meats also contain other cancer-promoting chemicals that are created during cooking. These

Heterocyclic Amines (HCAs) which are hazardous compounds created in meats and other foods that
have been cooked at high temperatures. According to research, processed meats are clearly associated
with an increased risk of stomach, colon and breast cancers.

Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs): Many processed meats are smoked as part of the
curing process, which causes PAHs to form. PAHs can also form when grilling. When fat drips onto the
heat source, causing excess smoke, and the smoke surrounds your food, it can transfer cancer-causing
PAHs to the meat.

Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs): When food is cooked at high temperaturesincluding
when it is pasteurized or sterilizedit increases the formation of AGEs in your food. AGEs build up in your
body over time leading to oxidative stress, inflammation and an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes
and kidney disease.
The truth is, processed meats are not a healthful choice for anyone and should be avoided entirely, according
to a 2011 review of more than 7,000 clinical studies examining the connection between diet and cancer. The
report was commissioned by The World Cancer Research Fund 2 (WCRF) using money raised from the general
public. Therefore the findings were not influenced by any vested interests, which makes it all the more reliable.

It's the biggest review of the evidence ever undertaken, and it confirms previous findings: Processed meats
increase your risk of cancer, especially bowel cancer, and NO amount of processed meat is "safe." You're far
better off ditching the deli meats and opting instead for fresh organically-raised grass-fed meats, or wild caught

3. Margarine
The unfortunate result of the low-fat diet craze has been the shunning of healthful fats such as butter, and
public health has declined as a result of this folly. There are a myriad of unhealthy components to margarine
and other butter impostors, including:

Trans fats: These unnatural fats in margarine, shortenings and spreads are formed during the process
of hydrogenation, which turns liquid vegetable oils into a solid fat. Trans fats contribute to heart disease,
cancer, bone problems, hormonal imbalance and skin disease; infertility, difficulties in pregnancy and
problems with lactation; and low birth weight, growth problems and learning disabilities in children. A US
government panel of scientists determined that man-made trans fats are unsafe at any level.

Free radicals: Free radicals and other toxic breakdown products are the result of high temperature
industrial processing of vegetable oils. They contribute to numerous health problems, including cancer
and heart disease.

Emulsifiers and preservatives: Numerous additives of questionable safety are added to margarines
and spreads. Most vegetable shortening is stabilized with preservatives like BHT.

Hexane and other solvents: Used in the extraction process, these industrial chemicals can have toxic
CLA is not only known to help fight cancer and diabetes, it may even help you to lose weight, which cannot be
said for its trans-fat substitutes.
Good-old-fashioned butter, when made from grass-fed cows, is rich in a substance called conjugated linoleic
acid (CLA). Much of the reason why butter is vilified is because it contains saturated fat. If you're still in the
mindset that saturated fat is harmful for your health, then please read theHealthy Fats section of my Optimized
Nutrition Plan to learn why saturated fat is actually good for you.

4. Vegetable Oils
Of all the destructive foods available to us, those made with heated vegetable oils are some of the worst. Make
no mistake about it--vegetable oils are not the health food that you were lead to believe they were. This is
largely due to the fact that they are highly processed, and when consumed in massive amounts, as they are by
most Americans, they seriously distort the important omega-6 to omega-3 ratio. Ideally, this ratio is 1:1.
Anytime you cook a food, you run the risk of creating heat-induced damage. The oils you choose to cook with
must be stable enough to resist chemical changes when heated to high temperatures, or you run the risk of
damaging your health. One of the ways vegetable oils can inflict damage is by converting your good cholesterol
into bad cholesterolby oxidizing it. When you cook with polyunsaturated vegetable oils (such as canola, corn,
and soy oils), oxidized cholesterol is introduced into your system.
As the oil is heated and mixed with oxygen, it goes rancid. Rancid oil is oxidized oil and should NOT be
consumedit leads directly to vascular disease. Trans-fats are introduced when these oils are hydrogenated,
which increases your risk of chronic diseases like breast cancer and heart disease.
So what's the best oil to cook with?
Of all the available oils, coconut oil is the oil of choice for cooking because it is nearly a completely saturated
fat, which means it is much less susceptible to heat damage. And coconut oil is one of the most unique and
beneficial fats for your body. For more in-depth information about the many benefits of coconut oil, please see
this special report. Olive oil, while certainly a healthful oil, is easily damaged by heat and is best reserved for
drizzling cold over salad.

5. Microwave Popcorn

Perfluoroalkyls, which include perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), are
chemicals used to keep grease from leaking through fast food wrappers, are being ingested by people through
their food and showing up as contaminants in blood. Microwave popcorn bags are lined with PFOA, and when
they are heated the compound leaches onto the popcorn.
These chemicals are part of an expanding group of chemicals commonly referred to as "gender-bending"
chemicals, because they can disrupt your endocrine system and affect your sex hormones. The EPA has ruled
PFCs as "likely carcinogens," and has stated that PFOA "poses developmental and reproductive risks to
humans." Researchers have also linked various PFCs to a range of other health dangers, such as:

Infertility -- A study published in the journal Human Reproduction3 found that both PFOA and PFOS
(perfluorooctane sulfonate), dramatically increased the odds of infertility. PFOA was linked to a 60 to 154
percent increase in the chance of infertility.

Thyroid disease -- A 2010 study4 found that PFOA can damage your thyroid function. Individuals with
the highest PFOA concentrations were more than twice as likely to report current thyroid disease,
compared to those with the lowest PFOA concentrations. Your thyroid contains thyroglobulin protein,
which binds to iodine to form hormones, which in turn influence essentially every organ, tissue and cell in
your body. Thyroid hormones are also required for growth and development in children. Thyroid disease,
if left untreated, can lead to heart disease, infertility, muscle weakness, and osteoporosis.

Cancer -- PFOA has been associated with tumors in at least four different organs in animal tests (liver,
pancreas, testicles and mammary glands in rats), and has been associated with increases in prostate
cancer in PFOA plant workers.

Immune system problems -- Several studies by scientists in Sweden indicate that PFCs have an
adverse effect on your immune system. As described in a report on PFCs by the Environmental Working
Group (EWG), PFOA was found to decrease all immune cell subpopulations studied, in the thymus and
spleen, and caused immunosupression.

Increased LDL cholesterol levels A 2010 study in the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent
Medicine5 found that children and teens with higher PFOA levels had higher levels of total cholesterol and
LDL or "bad" cholesterol, while PFOS was associated with increased total cholesterol, including both LDL
cholesterol and HDL or "good" cholesterol.
I strongly recommend avoiding any product you know containing these toxic compounds, particularly non-stick
cookware, but also foods sold in grease-proof food packaging, such as fast food and microwave popcorn.
Clearly, if you're eating fast food or junk food, PFCs from the wrapper may be the least of your problems, but I
think it's still important to realize that not only are you not getting proper nutrition from the food itself, the
wrappers may also add to your toxic burden.

6. Non-Organic Potatoes and Other Fresh Produce Known for High Pesticide
Your best bet is to buy only organic fruits and vegetables, as synthetic agricultural chemicals are not
permissible under the USDA organic rules. That said, not all conventionally grown fruits and vegetables are
subjected to the same amount of pesticide load. While Koch focuses on potatoes, as they tend to take up a lot
of pesticides and other agricultural chemicals present in the soil, I would recommend reviewing the "Shopper's
Guide to Pesticides in Produce"6 by the Environmental Working Group.
Of the 48 different fruit and vegetable categories tested by the EWG for the 2013 guide, the following 15 fruits
and vegetables had the highest pesticide load, making them the most important to buy or grow organically:

In contrast, the following foods were found to have the lowest residual pesticide load, making them the safest
bet among conventionally grown vegetables. Note that a small amount of sweet corn and most Hawaiian
papaya, although low in pesticides, are genetically engineered (GE). If you're unsure of whether the sweet corn
or papaya is GE, I'd recommend opting for organic varieties:

7. Table Salt
Salt is essential for lifeyou cannot live without it. However, regular 'table salt' and the salt found in processed
foods are NOT identical to the salt your body really needs. In fact, table salt has practically nothing in common
with natural salt. One is health damaging, and the other is healing.

Processed salt is 98 percent sodium chloride, and the remaining two percent comprises man-made
chemicals, such as moisture absorbents, and a little added iodine. These are dangerous chemicals like
ferrocyanide and aluminosilicate. Some European countries, where water fluoridation is not practiced,
also add fluoride to table salt

Natural salt is about 84 percent sodium chloride. The remaining 16 percent of natural salt consists of
other naturally occurring minerals, including trace minerals like silicon, phosphorous and vanadium

Given that salt is absolutely essential to good health, I recommend switching to a pure, unrefined salt. My
favorite is an ancient, all-natural sea salt from the Himalayas. Himalayan salt is completely pure, having spent
many thousands of years maturing under extreme tectonic pressure, far away from impurities, so it isn't
polluted with the heavy metals and industrial toxins of today. And it's hand-mined, hand-washed, and minimally
processed. Himalayan salt is only 85 percent sodium chloride, the remaining 15 percent contains 84 trace
minerals from our prehistoric seas. Unrefined natural salt is important to many biological processes, including:

Being a major component of your blood plasma, lymphatic fluid, extracellular fluid, and even amniotic

Carrying nutrients into and out of your cells

Maintain and regulate blood pressure

Increasing the glial cells in your brain, which are responsible for creative thinking and long-term

Helping your brain communicate with your muscles, so that you can move on demand via sodiumpotassium ion exchange

While natural unprocessed salt has many health benefits, that does not mean you should use it with impunity.
Another important factor is the potassium to sodium ratio of your diet. Imbalance in this ratio can not only lead
to hypertension (high blood pressure) and other health problems, including heart disease, memory decline,
erectile dysfunction and more. The easiest way to avoid this imbalance is by avoiding processed foods, which
are notoriously low in potassium while high in sodium. Instead, eat a diet of whole, ideally organically-grown

foods to ensure optimal nutrient content. This type of diet will naturally provide much larger amounts of
potassium in relation to sodium.

8. Soy Protein Isolate and Other Unfermented Soy Products

Sadly, most of what you have been led to believe by the media about soy is simply untrue. One of the worst
problems with soy comes from the fact that 90 to 95 percent of soybeans grown in the US are genetically
engineered (GE), and these are used to create soy protein isolate. Genetically engineered soybeans are
designed to be "Roundup ready," which means they're engineered to withstand otherwise lethal doses of
The active ingredient in Roundup herbicide is called glyphosate, which is responsible for the disruption of the
delicate hormonal balance of the female reproductive cycle. What's more, glyphosate is toxic to the placenta,
which is responsible for delivering vital nutrients from mother to child, and eliminating waste products. Once the
placenta has been damaged or destroyed, the result can be miscarriage. In those children born to mothers who
have been exposed to even a small amount of glyphosate, serious birth defects can result.
Glyphosate's mechanism of harm was only recently identified, and demonstrates how this chemical disrupts
cellular function and induce many of our modern diseases, including autism. Soy protein isolate can be found in
protein bars, meal replacement shakes, bottled fruit drinks, soups and sauces, meat analogs, baked goods,
breakfast cereals and some dietary supplements.
Even if you are not a vegetarian and do not use soymilk or tofu, it is important to be a serious label reader.
There are so many different names for soy additives, you could be bringing home a genetically modified soybased product without even realizing it. Soy expert Dr. Kaayla Daniel offers a free Special Report 7, "Where the
Soys Are," on her Web site. It lists the many "aliases" that soy might be hiding under in ingredient lists -- words
like "bouillon," "natural flavor" and "textured plant protein."
Besides soy protein isolate, ALL unfermented soy products are best avoided if you value your health.
Thousands of studies have linked unfermented soy to malnutrition, digestive distress, immune-system
breakdown, thyroid dysfunction, cognitive decline, reproductive disorders and infertilityeven cancer and heart
The only soy with health benefits is organic soy that has been properly fermented, and these are the only soy
products I ever recommend consuming. After a long fermentation process, the phytate and "anti-nutrient" levels
of soybeans are reduced, and their beneficial properties become available to your digestive system. To learn
more, please see this previous article detailing the dangers of unfermented soy.

9. Artificial Sweeteners
Contrary to popular belief, studies have found that artificial sweeteners such as aspartame can stimulate your
appetite, increase carbohydrate cravings, and stimulate fat storage and weight gain. In one of the most recent
of such studies8, saccharin and aspartame were found to cause greater weight gain than sugar.
Aspartame is perhaps one of the most problematic. It is primarily made up of aspartic acid and phenylalanine.
The phenylalanine has been synthetically modified to carry a methyl group, which provides the majority of the
sweetness. That phenylalanine methyl bond, called a methyl ester, is very weak, which allows the methyl group
on the phenylalanine to easily break off and form methanol.
You may have heard the claim that aspartame is harmless because methanol is also found in fruits and
vegetables. However, in fruits and vegetables, the methanol is firmly bonded to pectin, allowing it to be safely
passed through your digestive tract. Not so with the methanol created by aspartame; there it's not bonded to
anything that can help eliminate it from your body.
Methanol acts as a Trojan horse; it's carried into susceptible tissues in your body, like your brain and bone
marrow, where the alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) enzyme converts it into formaldehyde, which wreaks havoc
with sensitive proteins and DNA. All animals EXCEPT HUMANS have a protective mechanism that allows
methanol to be broken down into harmless formic acid. This is why toxicology testing on animals is a flawed
model. It doesn't fully apply to people.

Guidelines for Healthy Food

Whatever food you're looking to eat, whether organic or locally grown, from either your local supermarket or a
farmer's market, the following are signs of a high-quality, healthy food. Most often, the best place to find these
foods is from asustainable agricultural group in your area. You can also review my free nutrition plan to get
started on a healthy eating program today:

It's grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers (organic foods fit this description, but so do some
non-organic foods)

It's not genetically engineered

It contains no added growth hormones, antibiotics, or other drugs

It does not contain artificial anything, nor any preservatives

It is fresh (if you have to choose between wilted organic produce or fresh conventional produce, the
latter may still be the better option as freshness is important for optimal nutrient content)
It was not grown in a factory farm

It is grown with the laws of nature in mind (meaning animals are fed their native diets, not a mix of
grains and animal byproducts, and have free-range access to the outdoors)

It is grown in a sustainable way (using minimal amounts of water, protecting the soil from burnout, and
turning animal wastes into natural fertilizers instead of environmental pollutants)