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We Chew Too Few

February 9, 2011

Anyone up for a burger and large coke? Take that first big bite followed by one small one and wash it down with some corn syrup and carbonated water. MMMM…the classic lunch. It is a daily site that drives me absolutely insane, and I see at almost any restaurant and even at family and friend gatherings.

Let’s think this through (in a watered down basic version)…the human body is designed to digest food. We know this to be true because we have energy to move and nutrition to repair and rebuild. When food passes the lips and enters the mouth, the body responds to the smell and taste of the food by secreting saliva. Saliva is filled with digestive enzymes, antibacterial compounds, water and other chemicals to aid in digestion and protection. There are also teeth in there that are designed to break down the larger pieces of food, so that the chemicals in saliva can have the opportunity to do there job. Yes, your teeth have a job outside of being shown off in pics with your “beautiful” smile.

The body then determines the amount of digestive enzymes from the pancreas to the duodenum, as well as the amount of acid to be created that is needed to continue the digestive process in the stomach. After a couple of hours in the stomach, it then travels to the small intestine where it meets the enzymes from the pancreas and bile that is donated from the gall bladder. Bile is created from the “leftovers” in the liver. It emulsifies fat, very much the same way you see Dawn dish detergent work in the kitchen. When this happens, the digestive enzymes protease and lipase get to do more work on proteins and lipids (fats) because there is more surface area to break down the food.

The food is now moving down the small intestine and being absorbed and assimilated into the blood stream. Any leftover foods that have not been broken down by enzymes throughout the intestinal tract are then enjoyed by bacteria or fungi. These bugs really have a good time when you do not chew your food. This is a gigantic problem that you may feel many times in the bathroom.

Here’s why. When you don’t chew to a liquid state (yes, you have to liquefy it) and just swallow or wash it down with sugar filled carbonated water, the body has to force the pancreas to create more enzymes and the stomach to potentially create more acid. If it is a food high in fat, then the gall bladder has to push more bile, which also forces the liver to work at a higher level. At this point, your body will be lucky to get a high percentage of what you ate to use, so as the food moves through the bacteria and fungi region more problems arise. And boy do they have a good time. Instead of YOU getting the opportunity to rebuild and repair, the “bugs” do. This has the potential to create an imbalance between the good guys and the bad guys and potentially leading to diarrhea, constipation or bowel damage (aka bleeding). The reason so many of you jump onto the probiotic band wagon without even knowing where the problem is in the first place. Correct the cause, correct the problem; instead of just correcting the problem. You still have issues going on in there.

There are still potential issues at the pancreas, stomach, liver, and gall bladder that could be greatly reduced by taking the time to chew your food to a liquid. If these are stressed, it can lead to many other hazards that may harm other organs as well as the obvious lack of nutrition. Other benefits of chewing are giving the body the opportunity to know what has entered, so it can respond correctly and know when it is full. This is a really big deal because it could play a big roll in weight loss. You can also set aside the time to eat with your family or friends to make it a more special time, although you may not be talking much because everyone would be chewing. I guess this would be a good time to learn sign language.

So, do you think not chewing our food could potentially lead to issues just as severe is ingesting inferior foods? I think so.

If you would like further details about this issue, please attend one of the free seminars. Just click the KHI logo for more details.

Sugar: Cost and Benefit

February 4, 2011

We absolutely love it…in every form.  Sweet.  Tasty.  Energizing.  Calming.  Its name is sugar….aka sucrose, fructose, maltose, corn syrup, glucose, or any other chemical name that is used to tell us its in there.  Each particular sugar derivative plays its role in our bodies, but most have become to believe it is bad for us.  What do you say we mix things up a bit and chat about its good points.  Well, only as far as to say which ones are good.

Let’s get the downsides of excess sugar.  Ingesting too much can potentially cause diarrhea and constipation if they are in excess or undigestible in the intestines.  This situation potentially leads an intolerance or sensitivity or what many have deemed a “food allergy”.  The absorbed excess that is not eating by the bugs in the intestinal tract gets the pleasure of entering the blood stream and filtered through the kidneys.  The kidneys really enjoy the extra work load they acquire, so much so they refer to it as there own “tax season”.  Shall I continue?  Nah, we will save the discussion of the adrenal and nervous system for another time.  It would be too depressing for this wonderful paragraph of happiness.

Now, the good sugars can do.  They give us energy (although so do proteins and fats).  They also can potentially make us feel really great if we are sad or feeling depressed.  (especially those oatmeal raisin cookies my wife makes).  But wait, if we eat too many it takes us back to the discussion we didn’t want to in the above paragraph as well as the other we didn’t want to begin (the adrenals and the nervous system).

Argh, I need a cookie fix.

Leading us to the inevitable challenge of balancing the good and the bad.  This is even a greater problem for those who already have bowel distress and use sweet fixes to calm their nerves or raise themselves out of a funk.  Sorry, but this just drags you down a spiral of more stress.  How do you change it?  Well, first begin with the cost-benefit.  Which stress do you want to correct more?  The one that is rough out the back end, for example, or your brain from exploding because of the crying baby in the other room?  This is a tough call because often the emotional one is staring us in the face and is usually corrected first.  However, if we can just take a small stand in our weakest moments, we may just make that difference.

Let’s start with all that is available in the sugar world.

So… we are left with natural sugars in whole, unobstructed fruits and vegetables.  These are the only sugars that offer us a full positive.  One we get energy, and two we get other nutrients.  They are also easily digestible, tasty, and your body has the opportunity to do more with them.

My apologies for the failure to give more good, but this is really all I have for you.  Sugars in excess cause problems.

Wait, I said excess!  Sweetie, where are those oatmeal raisin cookies!  I think I have a sugar deficiency!

Are we overdosing?

January 27, 2011

Food is a chemical just like many of the drugs and supplements we consume. all are made of chemicals from the periodic table were forgot about in our high school science class. Drugs (prescriptive, non-prescriptive, or recreational) have been a victim of overdosing, but has anyone ever discussed the possibility that the food we eat is a victim of overdosing? It is hard to fathom that such a wonderful part of the day can turn into an emergency response by the human body, and ultimately a nightmare of uncomfortable stress, gas, bloating, constipation, diarrhea, and…well, the list goes on and on. Yet, we continue on the same path. This is a major issue that many of us have never thought as relevant, but due to so many foods being easy to consume and readily available it has arrived: A Food Overdose.
With all the so-called healthy choices out there, it is becoming increasingly difficult to know what to eat. Many of us have given up because we have moments of improvement only to find that there is an endpoint and the results plateau or turn back to the direction they originated. Somewhere along the line we have overdosed on certain foods and our bodies have turned on us…or have we turned on our bodies? The continuation of eating in excess is surely us turning on our bodies. Our bodies are merely trying to respond by balancing the constant onslaught of what we ingest. When this happens, something has got to give and the body has to compensate to continue forward. Part of us wins and part of us loses. We might as well wish our bodies good luck that balancing act. And we think we have it rough just trying to balance a day of work. The main difference is we usually get a break for sleep.
When the body is stressed, it continues the search for a balance while you are sleeping. Well, if and only if you can sleep because you may be so far out of whack that it keeps you up all night while it tries to find peace. And you thought the reason you were wide awake was because of deadline you have next week. The stress you feel is not only emotional, it is also in imbalance in the chemical environment. Now, to find a way to correct this imbalance…