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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM

The past couple of weeks, we’ve looked at diabetic-friendly beverages. The following herbal recipe contains 3 anti-inflammatory herbs. As diabetes contains an inflammatory process, this beverage should be helpful in making healthy diabetes food choices.

This is also a low fructose recipe as pineapples only contain moderate amounts. There are serious issues about how fructose behaves in our bodies (see below) and we should not ingest any more than 1 – 2 pieces of low-fructose fruits, daily. Learn more about low fructose foods, here (note the measurements here are in milligrams [mg] and 1,000 mg = 1 gram [g].

I also advise NO juices most of the time, except vegetable juices (note: tomato is a fruit).

Dr. Mercola’s fructose recommendations are no more than 25 grams of fructose a day (and only 15g. from whole fruits  —no juices). All fruit must be ORGANIC!

An apple contains 9 grams.  One whole pear would be most of your limit, as would be 1 cup of grapes or 1/4 cup of raisins. These just mentioned fruits are to be used carefully. Other dried fruits should be used even more carefully, if at all.

Of the melons, watermelon is the most nutritious and least problematic except for fructose issues; you reach your daily fructose limit using just 1/16 of a medium watermelon.

The Best Fruit Choices: Kiwi, berries, pineapple, citrus (lemon, lime, grapefruit, tangerine, orange), fresh apricots, fresh prunes, cherries, nectarine, peach, papaya, guava, banana, avocados and moderate amounts of tomato.

NOTE: The nightshade vegetables and fruits (white and red and yellow potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes, tomatillos, cape gooseberry) are implicated as sources of inflammatory chemicals causing arthritis pain in sensitive individuals. So, if you are having skeletal or muscle pains, these foods might be reduced or eliminated for a few months to see if your Health improves. Sweet potatoes come from a different botanical family and do not cause these issues.

Pomegranate is not on the charts at the links. I use only the prophylactic 2 oz. dose of unsweetened pomegranate a day, as 1 of my few fruits (I mostly eat vegetables).

As this 2 oz. dose of pomegranate helps clear out cholesterol-restricted arteries (harmed by inflammation, and using cholesterol as a “natural bandaid”), I think it is probably OK, as long as we make enough natural cholesterol (from organic coconut oil’s medium-chain fatty acids) to do all the “good work” that cholesterol is meant to do.

Vitamin D is also important in this process and as much as 8,000 IU of Vitamin D3 seem to be needed rather than the 800 IU spoken about now.

Evidently, even at 8,000 IU (equivalent to 20 minutes in summer sun over 40% of your body skin), there is not toxicity, but the Vitamin D3 (only supplement form to use) is still NOT as good as natural sunlight. The supplement is not ready-to-use by our body, yet, and if we do not do the extra step well (which requires cholesterol), then we are still Vitamin D deficient.

Dr. Mercola continues about the harm from fructose:

“Thanks to the excellent work of researchers like Dr. Robert Lustig , and Dr. Richard Johnson, we now know that fructose:

  • Is metabolized differently from glucose, with the majority being turned directly into fat
  • Tricks your body into gaining weight by turning off your body’s appetite-control system. Fructose does not appropriately stimulate insulin, which in turn does not suppress ghrelin (the “hunger hormone”) and doesn’t stimulate leptin (the “satiety hormone”), which together result in your eating more and developing insulin resistance.
  • Rapidly leads to weight gain and abdominal obesity (“beer belly”), decreased HDL, increased LDL, elevated triglycerides, elevated blood sugar, and high blood pressure — i.e., classic metabolic syndrome (Em: also known as Syndrome X).
  • Over time leads to insulin resistance, which is not only an underlying factor of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, but also many cancers.”

Agave is also problematic and turns out to be just as bad as High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) which is a cheap sweetener found in almost all processed and refined foods. Both wreck your Health.

In the past, I espoused agave as it is “low-glycemic”, but the stuff is at least 75% fructose (that’s high!) and it has other serious Health consequences because of that. In the 1970’s, powdered crystaline fructose was touted as “better” than sucrose (“table sugar”) and so we used it. Crystaline fructose is the worst of all. I sure wish scientists were interested in the research back then!

The only safe sweeteners for diabetics, and anyone else, are moderate amounts of pure ORGANIC maple syrup and stevia or organic brown sugar, like Succanat (even less frequently) I prefer the liquid form of stevia, after trying many of the powders.

Organic honey can be used rarely, as all honey has a fairly high amount of fructose, but it has some other benefits. (Never give raw honey to children under 3!); it has botulism spores, as does all honey, and children under 3  immune systems can’t handle that, yet. Organic molasses can also be used sparingly, infrequently.

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WEEKEND WARRIORS JOINT TEA

Three of the herbs incorporated into this drink — turmeric, ginger and cardamom — produce a natural anti-inflammatory effect. The black pepper and the cayenne also help to synergize the benefit of the anti-inflammatory herbs. Cayenne also helps to raise your metabolic rate so you burn calories better. Be aware that cayenne should not be overdone as you do not want to have digestive upset.

I recommend only using organic, non-irradiated spices. Regular spices are irradiated (they don’t have to say that on the label).

6 cardamom pods, cracked
1 T chopped fresh turmeric* or ¼ teaspoon ground dried turmeric
1 T chopped fresh ginger
¼ t whole black peppercorns
2C   filtered or spring water
organic, ground cayenne pepper, to taste
1C pineapple juice, chilled **
2 mint sprigs for garnish, optional

In a small pot, combine the first 4 ingredients with 2C of water. Cover and bring to a gentle boil.  Turn off the heat and set aside to steep for 20 minutes.

Using a strainer, pour the tea into a large jar, add pineapple juice and chill. Before serving, add the organic cayenne pepper to taste.

Divide the tea between 2 – 4 glasses.  If desired, bruise the mint sprigs in the glass.

* You should be able to find fresh turmeric (a member of the Ginger Family) in Asian markets, where it will be part of the recipe for curry powder. Enjoy! Turmeric (and its active ingredient, curcumin, is a wonder-food. More about it in later posts).

** the pineapple provides bromelain, an enzyme which helps digest your food (and is efficacious elsewhere in your body), but this would only be present in fresh, fresh puree and frozen forms, not canned.

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Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:  see the links above to Nutrition Data’s Fructose Charts and Doctor Mercola’s article. The recipe originated at Bottom Line.

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information” (TM)

As “Indian Summer” brings its reprise, here are some herbal recipes for beating-the-heat, and they are helpful alternatives for diabetics. Many herbs are effective in ameliorating symptoms and causes for diabetic reactions. This series has been highlighting some of the best. The first recipe helps to make ice-cream just a bit more useful — as the Lavender is a stress-reducer. ===========================================================================================

MURPHY’S LAVENDER AND WHITE CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM

2T lavender flowers 500ml spring or filtered water
1T liquid organic honey
65 g sugar [[Em: use organic brown sugar and I’ve halved it already, to start]]
5 organic egg yolks
200 ml organic milk [NOT ultra-pasteurized]
80 g white chocolate [dark chocolate is far healthier, so consider it]
240 ml organic cream
1/4 teaspoon pure organic vanilla extract
(stevia, as needed)

___   Cook the lavender flowers in the water over a low heat until the water reduces to 1/10th of the original volume. This makes an infusion. Remove from the heat and strain. Stir in the honey and set aside, covered.
___   Melt the chocolate in a double boiler, over water.
___   Beat the sugar and egg yolks together just until pale yellow. Meanwhile …
___   Bring the milk to a low simmer, and watch it the whole time. If you have one, using a cast-iron plate for the burner distributes the heat better and protects from hot-spots which can burn the milk.
___   Remove the milk from the heat and beat the milk into the egg and sugar mixture in a slow stream. Pour the mixture back into the pot and place over low heat. Stir continuously until the custard thickens slightly (around 65-70C) and just coats the back of a spoon. But, at this temperature, you have not got a pasteurized egg mix.

To pasteurize the eggs: heat the custard to 73C and maintain that temperature for at least 5 minutes. Use a cooking thermometer, and definitely keep stirring! Don’t over-heat, though, because at around 76C you will scramble the eggs! Immediately remove from the heat, and then cover and place in the freezer to cool slightly, as the custard must still be warm to mix with the chocolate — so aim for about 70C.

___   The chocolate and the custard must both be warm when you mix them so they emulsify well. If not, the chocolate will clump at first when you add the liquid, but if you keep adding liquid and stirring, it will come smooth. Add only small amounts each time.  It is now safe to taste the product and add stevia, if needed.

___   Allow to cool, then mix in the vanilla and strained lavender water.
___   Whip the cream until it has doubled in volume; it should have soft peaks. Don’t over-whip! Next, fold the cream into the custard using a gentle motion to stir (with a vertical, slicing, circular motion).
___   Taste the cream-base now, again,  and adjust with stevia and vanilla.
___   Freeze using a home ice cream machine, or cover and place in a shallow tray or cake pan  in the freezer, stirring every few hours to break up the ice crystals (my father used to make ice-cream this way 60 years ago!).

If you’re using a home ice cream machine, then transfer the mixture to a freezer-proof covered container when the ice cream has just achieved a semi-solid consistency (around 15 minutes). Place it back in the freezer, and let it continue to freeze until it is solid. Clean your machine — it did its job.

Notes: The pot in which you melt the chocolate must be completely dry or the chocolate can clump. Vanilla essences vary, so make sure you taste the custard and are happy with the flavor before you freeze it! =====================================================================================================
Next, an effective diabetic-friendly beverage to slake your thirst effectively, especially in the hot dog-days of Summer. It’s a traditional American drink, now making its way around the world. When the farmers were bringing in the harvest under the hot American sun in the early 1800s, they couldn’t drink the copious amounts of water they needed not to become dehydrated as that amount would have bloated their stomachs and made it uncomfortable to work … and springs were sometimes far away, too.

So, building on a much older tradition (from approx. the 1600s), a new version of the Oxymel drink from Medieval times. The new drink was called “Haymaker’s Punch” and also, later, “Switchel“.

As the hay is about to be brought in during the next few weeks, this is the perfect time for this refreshing, satisfying Summer drink!

Not only will the apple cider vinegar help with blood-sugar control (as shown in many studies), but it will help with weight-loss and purportedly also help with better sleep and more comfortable GI tract.

The maple is actually a good sweetener for diabetics, if in small portions. Ginger is a potent anti-inflammatory and that’s important for diabetics, too.

Haymaker’s Punch is a healthy beverage, especially in comparison to modern commercial beverages.

Here are a couple of recipes and I may share more next week. The essential ingredients are:
___   Bragg’s or Spectrum’s organic apple cider vinegar (with the mother of vinegar). Only use these brands, not Heinz etc.,
___   filtered or spring water, never tap water
___   organic honey or organic Grade B maple syrup
___   organic blackstrap molasses (in some recipes)
___   fresh, grated ginger

======================================================================= DAVE’S PORTLAND SWITCHEL WITH STEVIA

2 C filtered or spring water, chilled
1 T Bragg’ apple cider vinegar
1/4 t stevia extract ( PureVia or TrueVia) **
1/8 t ground ginger*

For a 5-cup thermos bottle, use about 3 T ACV, 3/4 t stevia, and 3/8 t dry ginger. Then add chilled, filtered water to the top.

Coconut vinegar has got an amazing flavor, and this is a healthy experiment:
3 T coconut vinegar (I think Whole Foods carries it)
3/4 t stevia powder
3/8 t ground ginger *
1/8 t ground cinnamon
all in a 5-cup thermos bottle, then fill to the top with chilled, filtered water

Dave says “The hint of cinnamon really perked up this drink. It’s now sort of like drinking a spiced vanilla cookie with a slightly tangy spark”.

* Food.com says 1/8 teaspoon of powdered ginger is equal to about 1 Tablespoon of fresh, grated ginger, but it notes that “the flavor of ground ginger can be significantly different from fresh”. If using fresh ginger, slice it thinly or grate it. Put into about 4 cups of water and bring to simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool and squeeze out the solids (you can still use them in cookies).

** If you are trying liquid stevia, then use 1 dropperful per 10 – 12 fl.oz of water and per 1T apple cider vinegar or coconut vinegar. ============================================================== Best to all — Em

REFERENCE: to access more of the series: Diabetic Herbs The extra page links to the whole series are on that page.

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Continuing our series with recipes using diabetes-friendly herbs which diabetics should be paying attention to! Diabetes does not mean unimaginative food, at all. Look at these great recipes to help prevent diabetes and to improve it, if you are dealing with the condition.

In the Reference section, please find the previous parts of this series.

Now I continue with more recipes using the herbs best for pre-diabetes, Type 1 diabetics and Type 2 diabetics: Turmeric, Garlic, Mint, Parsley, Rosemary, Chili, Cinnamon, Ginger, Basil and Lavender!

(Dill seed is also good, as are organic maple syrup in moderation, organic coconut products and organic dark chocolate, in moderation.) Now, back to Lavender, the least known of the group of herbs.

Lavender is part of the  same botanical family as many of our most popular herbs – the Mint family — a cousin of mints, sage, rosemary and thyme. So, it is not surprising that lavender is edible and that its use in food preparation is also returning, as a refreshing “new” flavor, even though it’s been used in food for centuries (especially in European Medieval cookery)!

Lavender’s flowers and leaves can be used fresh, and both buds and stems can be used dried for cooking purposes. The stalks are much more concentrated flavor and should be used in soups and sauces (don’t overcook, as they can become bitter), whereas the fresh flowers give an ambrosial and delicate palate delight. The potency of even the lavender flowers increases with drying.

Lavender is best used alongside fennel, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, and savory.

And, as I noted last time, English Lavender (l. angustifolia and munstead) has the sweetest fragrance of all, and is the one preferred in cooking as it has a sweet, floral flavor, with lemon and citrus notes.

Cooking with Lavender:
In cooking, use only 1/3 the quantity of dried flowers if you do not have fresh, if the recipe calls for fresh blooms.

Harvesting Lavender:
Harvest flowers only from organic, unsprayed plants.  Select only those stems that look most perfectly ready, with the fullest color. The fresher the flower, the more flavorful its taste, so pick your flowers as close as possible to food preparation time and one’s picked in the morning will be better than those picked on a hot afternoon — so gather in the moring and place in water, in a cool place, until using later that day for cooking.

All blooms should be thoroughly rinsed as little critters may hide. Immerse the stems in water. Then lay the flowers gently on paper or cloth towels, dab dry, or gently spin dry in a salad spinner; then place vertically in shallow water until using. You can also, layer the blooms carefully between moist paper towels in the refrigerator until meal time.

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LAVENDER OATMEAL

This is a tasty way to add oatmeal and an extra dimension to your diet, especially if you eat oatmeal most days, as you physician likely recommends.

2 servings

2 C      boiling filtered water
1/2 t  crushed lavender buds
1/8 t  Celtic or other sea salt
1 C    organic  oatmeal

Cook as directed on package and remove from heat.

Stir in:
1 t organic cinnamon
equivalent amount of Stevia to 1T of sugar or to taste

Other variations-
Cut up half an organic banana or organic apple (with its skin — which contains chromium — a vital mineral for diabetics).
Add organic walnuts (excellent for Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acids) or organic raisins once it’s cooked.

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HERBED CHEVRE WITH CROSTINI

8 oz. mild chevre (goat cheese), crumbled
2 T  Herbs de Provence  (which already contains lavender)
8 cloves garlic, peeled and thickly sliced
1 t pepper flakes
1 T cracked peppercorns
3/4-1 C extra virgin olive oil

Taste the mix by making about 1 Tablespoon sample. Add more lavender if needed (and make sure your Herbes de Provence actually contained it!).

Then, prepare the rest as follows, in a glass serving dish, to accent the colors and the layering effect.

Begin layering one third of the crumbled chevre, then one third each: Herbs de Provence, garlic slices, pepper flakes and cracked peppercorns.

Continue to create the three layers until all ingredients are utilized.

Pour a layer of oil ton top, to dip through or get onto the spreader.

It is best prepared ahead of time so all the flavors can blend. Refrigerate, and then bring it to room temp one hour before serving.

For Crostini: Slice crispy crusted French bread thinly, brush with olive oil. toast in 350F degree oven until light brown and crisp. Let your guests apply the chevre mix or do it for them ahead of time.

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SCRUMPTIOUS SINGLE SALAD

makes 1 serving

1 organic nectarine – pitted and sliced
a large handful of organic baby lettuce leaves
a few fresh basil leaves – slice rolled-up into spaghetti chiffonade
thinly sliced red onion, to taste
2 – 4 thin slices of a hard goat cheese (approx. 2 oz. of cheese)

Dressing:
2 t  organic apple-cider vinegar
1 t organic grapeseed oil or extra-virgin olive oil
a pinch of minced Culinary Lavender Flowers
a pinch of Succanat, natural sugar
chopped mint leaf to taste

Make the dressing and let it sit out at room temperature while you prep the greens, plate them and then drizzle on at the last moment.

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HERBAL RUB

Use for sustainable-fishery seafood and fish OR for organic poultry. It can also be applied to grass-fed meats – bison and lamb being best.

1 t crushed Certified Organic Jardin du Soleil Culinary Lavender
3 t chopped fresh rosemary leaves
4 t chopped fresh thyme
4 t minced garlic
4 t minced, fresh onion
2 t Celtic or other sea salt
1/2 t crushed black pepper OR a little organic cayenne pepper
1/4 C white wine Worcestershire sauce OR Coconut Secret’s Aminos
1/4 C extra-virgin olive oil

1)  Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor, and pulse well until blended.
2)  Cover, and refrigerate for at least 10 minutes before rubbing onto flesh or injecting it into the meat, as desired.
3) Marinate the protein at least an hour in the refrigerator, or even overnight, before cooking.
4) If desired and appropriate, consider serving with the potato recipe which follows.

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HERBES DE PROVENCE ROAST POTATOES

10-15 med organic red potatoes, whole (MUST be organic!), washed and dried
1/3 C extra virgin olive oil
2 T  Herbs de Provence (check label that it contains lavender) or add a pinch
1-2 T Celtic or other sea salt

1) Preheat your oven to 400F.
2) Mix all ingredients in a large bowl, and then toss to coat the potatoes.
3) Place all into a  9×9 oven-safe glass baking dish.
4) Bake 40-45 minutes, or to desired tenderness.

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MARCIA’S GLUTEN FREE CHOCOLATE FUDGE BROWNIES

6 T unsweetened organic cocoa
3 T organic coconut oil *
6 T unsalted organic butter *
2 organic, free-range eggs, room temperature (cold eggs harden the oil)
1 t organic pure vanilla extract
¼ C + 2 T Nutiva’s organic coconut nectar
¾ C  Coconut Secret’s  coconut crystals (a low glycemic sweetener)
1/8 t Celtic or other sea salt
½ C  sifted organic, fine-grind coconut flour (measure after sifting)

*You can use 9 T of Coconut Oil in place of 6 T butter for a dairy free version.

— Preheat your oven to 350F degrees. Prepare your 8×8 baking pan.

In a medium pan on very low heat, melt the butter and coconut oil together, stirring constantly. Remove from heat as soon as mixture is melted.

Add the organic cocoa and mix until thoroughly blended to a paste.

Add Coconut Crystals, Coconut Nectar and vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.

Add eggs and mix well until they are thoroughly blended into mixture.

Next,  add sea salt and coconut flour and blend until all dry ingredients are incorporated.

Pour this batter into well-greased 8×8 glass pan. Bake in the preheated 350F degree oven for 28-30 minutes or until top looks evenly baked and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry.

Cool and cut into 16 squares. Can be frozen. If not used within 2 days, please refrigerate well-wrapped.

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LAVENDER CHAI

3 organic black tea bags (orange pekoe or Assam)
1 stick of cinnamon          (make sure it’s not cassia)
around 8 allspice berries
2 t organic Cook’s vanilla extract
2 C filtered water
about 1/4 cup* organic honey
Stevia or Coconut Secret’s crystals = to 3/4C sugar*
1 t Jardin du Soleil Culinary Lavender**
1 t + fresh grated ginger
dash nutmeg

*total sweetener equals taste of about 1 cup of sugar, more or less to taste.
**Lavender can be finely ground in a spice grinder or in a throughly cleaned coffee grinder.

Drop the tea bags, cinnamon, allspice, vanilla, ginger and nutmeg into the 2 cups of boiling water.

Simmer until the mixture is a rich reddish brown. Take off the heat. Mix in the sweeteners; and strain out all large ingredients.

Pour this Chai concentrate into a  heat-safe glass or mug — making 1/3 full.

Fill the remainder of the glass with warm milk or warm water …  serve hot.

Or, for cold Chai, after the concentrate is cold, then add 2/3 cold milk, non-dairy milk, cold spring water — or a combo into your mug or glass.

Refrigerate the brewed Lavender Chai Tea Concentrate  for later use.

This stores for up to seven days and makes 3 – 5 servings, depending on the size of the mugs / glasses used.

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If changing a rosemary recipe to a lavender one, then use 3 times as much lavender as the rosemary.

If using fresh lavender buds in place of dried asked for in a recipe, use half-again the amount of fresh.

Enjoy making the recipes.

Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:
Diabetes – Herbs that Help — Lavender
Diabetes Recipes – Herb List
Diabetes Medicine Alert
Diabetic Concerns – marjoram and nutmeg
Diabetes – Low Thyroid Connection
Thyroid Connections to Diabetes
Herbal Help Diabetic GI Problems

Diabetics and Essential Fatty Acid Omega-3

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Here’s some of the advice that Hippocrates would give for at least a partial prescription for treating diabetes, as he always said “Let food be thy Medicine!”, and these foods are particularly useful for diabetics.

Lavender helps alleviate stress for diabetics.   Lavender

 

 

 

Registered dieticians Patricia Partain, RD and Jamie McDermott, RD list 10 herbs and spices below as some of the healthiest to incorporate into your diet, and many of these are especially helpful for diabetics.

Turmeric

Health benefits: The active ingredient is curcumin. It’s found in most curry mixes (it’s what makes them look so yellow). Turmeric is a calming spice and aids digestion. A 2006 study at Johns Hopkins University suggested that curcumin may also be helpful in reducing colon cancer.

How to use it: Add to curry mixes when making your own, otherwise, use a pre-made mix (check it’s in there on the label). You can also buy it as a single spice (when it is not a hot spice).

Mix it into any curry recipe, soup, or use with scrambled tofu or eggs.  You can also stir it into the water being used for quinoa, rice or couscous – and it will color them yellow as well as be more healthy.

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Garlic

Many people have learned about the amazing “stinking rose’s” health benefits: possibly lowering blood sugar and cholesterol, being a natural anti-viral and more. Holistic physicians use it to prevent onset of heart disease.

How to use it: It is most beneficial when it is raw. You must use it immediately after chopping or mashing withing 10 minutes or coat it in olive oil to give yourself a bit more time. Use in savory smoothies, dips, salad dressings, compound butters and spreads.

People suggest cooking it, but that does compromise it.

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Peppermint

Many diabetics have digestive issues as your overworked pancreas may not be supplying enough alkaline buffers needed for complete digestion.

Mint’s health benefits include:  relieving indigestion and nausea, as well as symptoms from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).  But Partain and McDermott say peppermint is not recomm-ended for people with acid-reflux disease.

Peppermint also has some energy stimulation components.

How to use it:  Most people use Peppermint as herbal tea by steeping it in hot water for a few minutes.

For a summer drink: crush the mint along with some lemon juice as a base for lemonade. Then to sweeten, add diabetic-friendly Truvia or other stevia powder to taste. If you crush or shave the ice, it becomes a cooling granita.

Mint can be used as an edible garnish, mixed in with lamb, added to feta cheese, salt and pepper to use as a dip or spread and more!

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Parsley

This herb is a cleanser. It helps to clean the GI tract and thereby “sweeten” breath. But, it is much more!

Health benefits: Parsley is high in potassium – a critical mineral which can help control high blood pressure and fluid retention. It is also high in vitamins K, C and A (which helps to keep skin healthy — which is also vital for diabetics).

How to use it: Add to basil pesto or tabouli.  You can even make a completely parsley pesto! Sprinkle it over potatoes, quinoa or brown rice. Add to fresh tomato sauces and finely chop into dressings. Use in savory smoothies. Juice it! Make a Mediterranean-style salad with lemon juice, tomatoes, chopped fresh onions and feta cheese. Add it to soup just as you take it off the burner, as long as it is minced (be sure to use the stems, too). Mix into meatloaf or hamburgers (this is a good place to use finely-minced stems as these dishes cook longer).

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Rosemary

This is an herb used in classic European cuisines, as the Simon & Garfunkle song implies “Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme”.

Health benefits:  rosemary may reduce potentially carcinogenic HCA levels when mixed with meat before cooking — HCAs are produced during barbequing, especially.

This herb has also been used to cure indigestion.

But, be aware that it can act as a natural diuretic (as can lemons), so keep your fluid levels up by drinking at least 64 ozs. of pure water a day (unless you have kidney disease — in which case, follow your urologist’s recommendation). If you are taking diuretics, you need to make sure that all your liquid intake is water. Other “liquids” will dehydrate you, in varying amounts..

How to use it:  rub rosemary extract or ground rosemary over meat before grilling (it goes particularly well with lamb). Sprinkle this herb over potatoes before roasting. Add it the water when poaching salmon. Bake it into breads (along with some garlic and black, Greek olives). Add rosemary to tomato sauce as you heat it, but be sure you have ground the leaves in a mortar and pestle, as the leaves don’t soften in cooking, easily, whether fresh or dried versions.

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Chili Pepper

Chilis, especially the smallest Asian ones, along with jalapenos, are very good sources of anti-oxidants, and are  nerve pain relievers (usually as a pharmaceutical cream — not as food).

Health benefits:  the component called capsaicin is an anti-inflammatory. This can also temporarily increase heat production in the body, so it helps cool you in hot weather and helps burn more calories for revved-up metabolism and weight-loss. Capsaicin has also been used to help with circulatory problems, which is an issue that many sedentary diabetics have.

However, if you have a sensitive stomach and colon already, use this with great care. Maybe start with small amounts of dried chili powder or a Japanese 7-spice powder, instead of any of the hot, fresh chili peppers.

I would not give this to most children. For diabetic kids, use alternatives.

How to use it: Mix tiny amounts of chilis into mashed potatoes or eggs. Stir it into softened butter, along with a tiny bit of lime, then spread on corn on the cob. Stir a tiny bit in to make Mexican hot chocolate.

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Cinnamon

The word has been out for quite a while about cinnamon’s ability to help diabetics, but actually quite a bit is needed, more than people think. Plus, some things labeled as “cinnamon” are actually “cassia” which is not helpful for this purpose.

Health benefits: real cinnamon has an anti-inflammatory effect and it can lower blood sugar. Cinnamon can also have an anti-cancer effect.

There has been some indication that cinnamon can increase metabolism, but exercise and diet are what’s really needed to make the difference.

How to use it: as a sweeter spice, people are more willing to use it. So, sprinkle cinnamon on oatmeal, sweet potatoes and into applesauce. Even though you can, I don’t recommend eating cookies and pies, but if you do, then be sure to add cinnamon!. Use it to spice meatballs and in drinks when they will be well-mixed.

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Ginger

Ginger is in the same botanical family as Turmeric, so it has many of the same properties. The main one, apart from fabulous flavor (fresh or dried) is that it is a well regarded anti-inflammatory, so it helps to lessen pain, especially for those with osetoarthritis.

Health benefits: Ginger helps to alleviate nausea and vomiting, and is very useful for children on car trips or for sea-sickness!

It also helps nausea when related to pregnancy.

For the rest of us, ginger is good for digestion.

How to use it: Grate it and add to broths or to stir-fry dishes. If you steep ginger in hot water and add lemon and honey this will make a soothing digestive tea. Bake gingersnaps or gingerbread as a way for diabetic kids to enjoy this spice as long as you use a diabetic-friendly natural sweetener like a tiny bit of organic maple syrup or stevia. Personally, I like undyed sushi ginger to chop-up into dressings, smoothies, popsicles and more.

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Basil

Basil is a cousin of mint. Most people only think of it in terms of pesto — an Italian sauce for pasta, but Basil is quite versatile. Thai food uses it to good advantage and the Holy Basil of India is used in Tulsi — an important herbal tea.

Health benefits: Like mint, basil also freshens breath. It is also an anti-inflammatory, and it has an alkaline pH. Basil is a  good source of magnesium and vitamin A — both of which are needed in potent doses for diabetics.

How to use it: of course, we’ll mention pesto sauce, and you can pair fresh leaves with tomatoes and mozzarella in a Caprese salad (which I personally find hard-to-eat and suggest you dice everything up and eat it on a plate instead of how it’s usually presented). Finely mince and immediately sprinkle over fish just after cooking. Add it to lemonade. Make holy basil into Tulsi tea or buy the tea directly (at Whole Foods).

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Lavender

Ah, this is another French secret! They will have the best lavender recipes, and lavender honey is incredible (use just tiny amounts, but you don’t need much as it has wonderful flavor!).

Diabetes is very stressful on your body and psyche, so lavender can be very beneficial to help bring calmness, allowing your body to rest and also have a better chance to rejuvenate.

Health benefits: Lavender is very calming and can aid with sleep.

How to use it: The flowers can be used in a tea (for sleeping, add a few lavender buds into chamomille tea — unless you are sensitive to daisies or other aster flowers. Otherwise, just brew a purely lavender tea.).  Lavender can be baked into cookies – with stevia as sweetener.

In the famed herb mix, Herbes de Provence, is a mix of fennel, basil, thyme and lavender which is used with meat, fish, quinoa or brown rice.

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Fresh herbs may seem expensive, but they are not when you think of the benefits they bring — and with less liklihood of side-effects. They are also easy to grown in your garden, or on a patio or balcony or on a windowsill in winter. You can always benefit from many of these listed above, all year, for reasonable cost. See the Titles Archive tab above for my excellent posts on container and indoor gardening!

Enjoy these useful herbs and see if your Health also improves as you incorporate them daily.

Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:

Sources: Patricia Partain, RD; Jamie McDermott, RD; University of Maryland Medical Center; American Cancer Society; whfoods.com; Prevention Magazine; Memorial Sloan Kettering; Food Network.
(c)2011 Chatanooga Times http://www.timesfreepress.com

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

I want to revisit low thyroid, as it is a possible source of an incomplete or inaccurate diagnosis for diabetes! Yes, you read that right. Let’s learn more from Dr. Robert Rowen, MD and from Dr. David Brownstein, MD. The first article is here: Diabetes and Thyroid Connection

Dr. Rowen asks in a recent email:

Is your diabetes really hypothyroidism?

If you have hard-to-treat Type 2 diabetes, your problem might not be insulin and your pancreas, but rather, it could be your thyroid!

Research scientists know that both humans and animals exposed to cold temperatures get high blood pressure. Next, they wondered if diabetic mice exposed to cold would get the problem even faster than normal mice.

They placed diabetic and control mice in a constant 41 degrees F environment. The normal mice survived, while the diabetic mice died (in just two hours)!

The team surmised that the diabetic animals died because they couldn’t maintain their body heat — which is regulated by their thyroid gland.

In good scientific fashion, the researchers decided to take it to the next step. They wondered if giving the diabetic animals thyroid hormone might help them withstand the cold.

So, they administered thyroid hormone to the diabetic mice. Those mice increased their body temperature AND even more interestingly, they also had a significant drop in their blood sugar within two hours (and a 50% blood-sugar decrease within four hours)!

The researchers then looked at blood sugar levels at the start of the study, and in the diabetic animals, they found the level had been five times normal! They found that the thyroid levels in these animals were also low.

Diabetes affects at least 150 million people worldwide, and that’s an understatement, as many people do NOT know they are diabetic.

In Oklahoma, where this research was conducted, there are over 268,500 cases of human diabetes. Most of these people, at any age, are obese or overweight;  most can cure it with a proper diet and moderate exercise, alone.

However, Dr. Rowen says that in his practice, he has  seen a number of people resistant to a simple dietary fix. And, there is also a group of adult diabetics who are thin. Yes, you can be thin and be hypothyroid (low thyroid). You can also be heavy, with low thyroid as a contributing factor to that overweight condition — often ascribed to your “diabetes”.

If you have Type 2 diabetes, at any age, then get your doctor to check your thyroid level by blood tests, to include a “free T3, free T4 and TSH” (and Dr. Brownstein insists on these and a few more lab tests: reverse T3, antithyroglobulin and antimicrosomal antibodies … and I think and knowing your Iodine level would be useful). Do not allow your doctor to just order a TSH test (it’s notoriously inaccurate).

However, Dr. Rowen uses the tests and learns a lot because he also compares the results to his patient’s basal body temperature. What’s that?

It’s the important lab test you take yourself as Dr. Broda Barnes, MD, famous endocrinologist in the early 20th century, described.

Dr. Rowen and Dr. Brownstein both ask you to check your “under the tongue” temperature the moment you open your eyes in the morning, three days in a row (several days away from your menstrual period, for women).

You have to have a Basal Thermometer (a special one from the pharmacy — with a numbering scale that let’s you see the tiniest changes in the temperature range that you need to understand).

Shake the mercury down the night before. Have a clock where you register the time. Open your eyes and reach for the thermometer and look at the clock. Do not move, except to breathe, until the 2 or 3 minutes are up.

Your morning, without movement, “basal temperature” should be at least 97.8F. If it’s not, see your integrative physician immediately!

What’s likely needed then? A prescription for T3 (as used in this study) might help your low thyroid and diabetes all in one go. Do NOT let any physician put you on synthetic thyroid preparations! Read more on that next time.

Meanwhile, Dr. Brownstein, MD alerts us to the facts that:
“Your body is composed of 70-80% water, and your brain is closer to 85% water!”

And, thyroid problems, like all illnesses, cannot be solved without getting sufficient water in your diet.

So, here’s how to know if you’re drinking enough water:

Do you have any of these signs of dehydration?

Fatigue
Dry tongue
Coated tongue
Vertical ridges on your nails
Dry skin
Poor skin elasticity

Even if you don’t notice any of these signs, Dr. Brownstein says you could still be water-deficient. It’s extremely common, especially in those with thyroid issues, and maybe that helps to account for that famous “diabetic” thirst!

Here’s an important formula for your recommended water intake:

Take your weight (in pounds) and divide in half.
That amount (in fluid ounces) is your recommended water intake.
That number divided by 8 equals the number of 8 ounce-sized glasses of water you should drink per day.

This process probably works for metric, too, but confirm this with your physician.

I recommend getting a big water bottle and loading it up in the morning. Then, carry it with you, while sipping on it through the day. That’s what I do.

Also, Dr. Brownstein addresses tips to prevent water loss that could lead to dehydration. All liquids are not equal. Only water counts to hydrate you, the rest dehydraye your tissues, in varying degrees. He says:

___   “Don’t overload on caffeine”  . . . (I say, try not to use caffeine, except for 2 cups of green tea a day)
___   “Don’t drink a lot of soda”  . . . (I say, don’t drink any! It’s VERY pH acidic.)
___   “Take it easy on the alcoholic beverages”  . . . ( I say “Why use them?” They are Carbs and do affect your blood-sugar levels, rob you of minerals and vitamins and stress your liver.) Get the “goodness” of wine by eating red organic grapes, instead!

Dr. Brownstein and I recommend that you use a water filter that removes fluoride and chlorine as well as bacteria and parasites. Tap water and bottled water (in plastic bottles) contain chemicals potentially harmful to your thyroid.

Now, I have yet to find a water filter which states that it removes fluoride! So, as my city stupidly voted to fluoridate the water, before I arrived, I go to markets in nearby suburbs which do NOT fluoridate their water and get state-of-the-art commercially-filtered water OR I buy spring water — and decant it into a porcelain crock, immediately.

You need to do all these steps to get baseline information on your health AND to stop the slide on a slippery-slope from these various beverages. More next week.

Best to all — Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Still trying to catch-up after my California trip! Dr. David Brownstein, MD – a long-time holistic physician from Michigan –  sounds the alarm bell and we all need to listen! It’s about how your thyroid’s health is connected to diabetic health, heart health, brain health and more!

First thing — watch Dr. Brownstein’s video at: Dr. Brownstein Explains Low Thyroid and there’s an important FREE OFFER, too. You only pay only $5.95 for shipping and get a DVD and 2 books and 2 editions of his newsletter (I think)! Great help for a fabulous price.

And then read another 2 of his newsletters at the following links!
Diabetics and Low Thyroid – 59 Diseases  — and many of these diseases are: 1) life-threatening and 2) avoidable when you know how.

I’ve discussed the importance of the 2 forms of the mineral Iodine many times — now, Dr. Brownstein connects all the dots and shows you what happens when you are malnourished by lack of Iodine, as most people are in the world, now — either due to poor soils, poor food access or poor food choices. Read  Diabetics and Iodine – A Critical Nutrient.

I found all this information very clear and have taken the free offer myself. I try to keep up with thyroid issues as I think it is a multi-generational problem in part of my family. Even I learned new things from Dr. Brownstein and I expect the 2 books will be worthwhile, too.

Do make sure that you learn all you can about hypothyroidism as low thyroid can be causing or contributing to your diabetes!

While you are waiting for more of his information:

___    start eating sea vegetables and edible seaweeds – they are Nature’s blood-thinners and are a great alkaline source of unpolluted Iodine. (If you are on blood-thinners, consult your physician. You can still eat these, but the dose of meds may need to be adjusted.).

___   You can make sure that you erase man-made foods with nitrates, as nitrates wreck our thyroid!

For example – breads are “fortified” with the synthetic B vitamin Thiamine Mononitrate (make sure your flours, pastas, dry cereals and doughs [and vitamin pills] do not have it! Use natural whole grains, instead.)  Do not use processed meats, sausages, bacon which have nitrates added. Check labels on other processed foods.

___   Iodized salt is NOT a good Iodine source! (Dr. Brownstein explains why it is not). Instead, use a complete, whole sea-salt like Celtic Salt from Brittany, France  OR Eden-brand Sea Salt.

___   Avoid most baked goods, dry cereals, pasta and pizza doughs which are literally killing you, for a second reason. Because of a changed-process in industrial baking made in the 1970s, Bromine was added instead of the long-used Iodine.  Business hasn’t changed even though the problems with Bromine came to light a long time ago.  Sodas also contain a form of this killer, Bromine.

More when I can!

Best to all – Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

I am continuing the posts over the next few weeks, as I can. It’s a busy family-time for me. I will include more recipes than usual, but will include scientific updates as I get time to do the research.

For those diabetics suffering from pancreatis, here’s input from Dr. Michael Cutler, MD.

“First, you should always seek the advice of your personal physician concerning your pancreatitis. But I can tell you this: for acute pancreatitis, you should immediately begin a diet of only clear liquids and then advance to juicing, along with pain control measures as needed. In general, recurring chronic pancreatitis often improves with cleaning up your diet, which means eating foods that require less of the pancreatic enzymes to digest it.

So what should you eat? You’ll need to cut out fatty and spicy foods, as well as heavy meals. Also, stop refined sugary baked goods with hydrogenated oils and replace them with high fiber (like cooked veggies). And be sure to include omega-3 oils such as cold-pressed fish oil and flax oil.

Next, identify major sources of stress and eliminate them. While you are making these lifestyle modifications, the following supplements can be very useful as a basic regimen for chronic recurring pancreatitis:

* Digestive enzymes with food for four months minimum.
* Vitamin B complex twice daily for six months or more. You can find these at your health food store.
* Lecithin (phosphatidylcholine) taken in a high dose twice daily for four weeks minimum to emulsify fats. You can also find these at your health food store.”

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INDIAN KESAR KHEER

This is an omega-3 rich chia “rice” pudding with saffron and nuts. Rosewater is found in a tiny, cobalt-blue bottle in the bar section of many supermarkets. For young children, you may want to make this a healthy snack, but for them, use your judgement as to whether to use the nuts at all; if you do, make sure they are chopped, well.

1 C cashews, soaked about an hour
2 C water
1 green cardamon pod
1/4 of an inch cinnamon stick
pinch of saffron
vanilla bean or extract, about 1 t
2-3 T agave
1/4 C chia seeds
1 -2 drops rosewater (optional)
pistachios* or other nuts for garnish

Throw everything but the chia and pistachios in the food processor or heavy-duty blender and blend til it’s yellow and liquified.

Put chia seeds in a big bowl. Pour saffron ‘milk’ over the chia and stir.

Refrigerate about an hour or overnight.

Garnish with pistachios (rose petals could be used, too) and eat.

* I never eat pistachios as they are a mold-source.

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Best to all — Em

Please also read the 4 years of still current articles in my archive. See the tab on the upper navigation bar. The extra page links are at the bottom of the first page.

You can also sign-up for email alerts for when I post to this blog. I try for once a week. The form is on the upper right of the side-bar. Thanks.

REFERENCE:
Omega 3 for Diabetics – Part 1
Omega 3 Foods for Diabetics – Part 2
Diabetics Need Omega 3 – Part 3
Omega 3 Helps Diabetes – Part 4
Omega 3 Fish Recipes – Part 5

(c)2011 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please do not use my articles on junk blogs. I will prosecute you. The only use of my copyrighted article is 2 small paragraphs (with my website shown) without further permission, from me, in writing. Contact me at the About Me page on the upper navigation bar if you want to share more than 2 paragraphs. Thanks.

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