Posts Tagged ‘healthy pregnancy’

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

I’ve written five articles on the subject of Iodine because it’s amazingly essential for our Health! How come you haven’t heard about it before? Well, it’s complacency and ignorance in current Public Health circles and in your doctor’s office. The scientific research is quite clear, and you need to take about 20 – 25 minutes to read the other 4 parts in this series, for background. If you are a regular reader, then just continue in this article’s text after these links.

LINKS to the previous articles in the series. Please read first. It won’t take long and your health really does depend on knowing this!

Diabetics – Iodine and Health, Part 1
Diabetics – Iodine and Health, Part 2
Diabetics – Iodine and Health, Part 3
Diabetics – Iodine and Health, Part 4

___ In this edition, as one of the topics, let’s discuss Iodine, Pregnancy and Breastfeeding, first.

Thyroid hormone and your thyroid gland, together with iodine, are the most important factors by far for completion of a normal pregnancy and delivering a normal baby.

Iodine is put into the mother’s milk by the lactating breast to levels that are 30 times the levels in the mother’s blood (your body can only put iodine in your breast milk if you have enough to give). I do not know how much (if any) is put into baby formulas. It would not be the first time that formula-makers have missed an essential ingredient. Maybe the amounts used would help explain the rash of learning “disabilities” and generally lower IQ scores in past decades, as Moms feeding their babies by breast milk has declined.

If you find after delivery or while nursing, that your thyroid has become sluggish and you have ‘low thyroid” symptoms (like fatigue, cold extremities, weight gain etc.), then maybe your body is giving all your Iodine stores to your baby and leaving you with nothing left to operate your thyroid and metabolism with. In those circumstances, your immunity is also put at risk, along with many other possibilities to erode your health. Making sure that you maintain proper Iodine levels for you and your baby is critical. You have to learn what foods are iodine rich and then eat them everyday in normal-size portions.

Iodine has very important functions for your child’s brain development before and after birth.

Iodine deficiency in pregnant or nursing mothers can lead to statistically significant neuro-cognitive deficits in their infants. Lack of iodine creates metabolic havoc and may create irreversible developmental brain damage during gestation and in the first several years of life, according to Peter Laurberg, from Aalborg Hospital in Denmark, and his colleagues. If it is bad enough, your child could become a cretin, which is not reversible.

Just start eating seaweed, daily. It tastes good; it really does. Next week, I’ll include more recipes, but meanwhile, Japanese and Macrobiotic cuisines offer the best chance to find some more recipes, along with Korean and Chinese cuisines, to a lesser extent.

[[Never buy Chinese source seaweed unless you are sure there is NO ecological damage in the area where it is harvested. With China’s pollution, this is almost impossible.]]

And, if you are concerned or interested, then take Dr. Abraham’s Iodine Loading Test to find out your body’s Iodine status (his lab is Optimox). All three labs mentioned below supply their own protocol for details on collection of urine samples, pooling samples for 24 hr. and sending a 2 ounce aliquot to the Laboratory for analysis. It would always be best to confirm that you can take this test when you are already pregnant; I don’t know the answer to that.

P.O. Box 3378, Torrance, CA 90510-3378
or Call Toll Free in America: (800) 223-1601
Optimox Iodine Loading Test

If you go through the Hakala Research Lab in Colorado, USA you will not need a doctor’s prescription for this test. Hakala Labs

Labrix Clinical Services Inc. in Oregon City, Oregon, USA is another lab which can do this test for you.
619 Madison Street STE 100
Oregon City, OR. 97045
Phone: 1 (503) 656-9596
Toll Free in America: 1 (877) 656-9596   Fax: 1 (877) 656-9756
Email: info@labrix.com
Labrix Iodine Testing – explanation

Dr. Jorge Flechas’ Lab: FFP Laboratories
576 Upward Rd. Suite 8
Flat Rock, NC 28731
Toll Free: 877-900-5556
Fax: 828-697-9020
Email: ffp_lab@yahoo.com

___Dr. Ryan Drum, PhD, one of the world’s experts on seaweeds, the best source of Iodine, also mentions that there is a generational aspect to whether you and your future grandchildren will have a body optimizing Iodine and providing protection for any babies you, your daughters and grand-daughters produce.

Read more here: How Seaweed Heals and How To Get Enough Iodine Read especially if you have chronic disease, have had recent trauma, surgery or are having chemotherapy. Additionally, seaweeds can help if you need anti-viral treatment or get pneumonia. Brown seaweeds are also the only vegetarian source of thyroid hormone able to be used by humans. Dr. Drum also discusses using seaweed as treatment “for prevention of Dioxin and PCB uptake” and to treat Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (which he regards as poisoning the brain’s fatty tissue) in troops who have been exposed to chemicals during warfare.

___ It is critical to raise your iodine consumption gradually if you are deficient. Let your organ systems accommodate. You just can’t “catch up quickly” to levels the Japanese use. Too much, too quickly can cause other equally serious health problems. Stay with the amounts Dr. Ryan Drum, PhD, Dr. Abrahams, Dr. Flechas, Dr. Brownstein suggest and work up to 50mg of Iodine a day, over a number of months, even as much as a year.

___ Unless your food happens to be organically-farmed where seaweed actually has been applied as fertilizer, almost no land plants provide iodine, and, as Dr. Drum alerts us, unfortunately, my favorite whole sea salts (Celtic salts) do not have enough, either. There’s just not enough left in even gently-evaporated sea water; you must eat ocean plants (seaweeds) or ocean fish which eat ocean plants to get your Iodine requirement everyday, as Nature intended.

Dr. Ryan Drum, PhD also says, “Individuals with “seafood allergy” seem especially sensitive to iodine. Contrary to some practitioners and their believing patients, he says nobody has “iodine allergy”. No iodine, no life.” Use seaweed as your source rather than fish if you have concerns.

Icelandic kelp, 8000 parts per million
Norwegian kelp 4000ppm
Atlantic kelp 1500-2000ppm
Pacific kelps 500-1200ppm
Fucus spp. (species) 200-500ppm
Wakame 50-150ppm
Sargassum 35ppm
Nori 15 ppm

These numbers are estimates and will vary considerably by season, location, age of the plant and harvest practices. Sources for buying these were provided in my previous articles.

___ Dr. Drum has learned that the Japanese and other Asians who eat much more seaweed than the rest of the world does, apparently soak their Kombu and other seaweeds in freshwater for 10-30 minutes prior to using in miso broth (dashi) and other cooking. He says this effectively removes about 60% of the iodine (Hazutosi).

Curiously, he was also told by Japanese nationals that the kombu was then also left in the miso broth for 10-20 minutes and then discarded. It can be used several times, if left to dry out again. And, if you intend to use it several times, then maybe forego the “soaking in fresh water” and just allow the first dashi to have 60% iodine and remaining 2 later dashi soups to have a lesser amount, at least sometimes.

For people like the Japanese and Okinawans, who eat large amounts of seafood and sea veggies, the soaking or prolonged rinsing of high-iodine content seaweeds may reduce the risks for excess iodine-induced disease. But, notice that the all-pervasive “sushi” wrap is made from nori, which has low levels of iodine, and therefore does not require pre-treatment.

Sprinkling dry, cut nori on rice, as a garnish on anything or wrapping sushi, is a good way to get started, along with using about 1t of powdered Japanese-sourced or American-sourced Kombu a day, (to a max in later months of a total of 1Tablespoon of kombu powder per person, spread between 3 meals and snacks most days).

___ Dr. Ryan Drum, PhD also sheds light on another likely wide-spread set of conditions which seaweed can alleviate – potassium deficiency. And, you likely need to take a daily supplement of selenium (this is another mineral researchers find chronically lacking in the general public, and especially in diabetics).

Dr. Drum says, ” I believe that almost any craving for salt in our dietary times of heavily salted (with only “table-salt” i.e. sodium chloride), home-cooking, restaurant meals and preserved foods is a strong indication of potassium deficiency, especially in pregnancy.”

Potassium is an essential mineral, needed for even minimal nerve and muscle functioning. It is also a cross-membrane transporter ion for your brain’s neurotransmittors (like serotonin – which prevents depression) and also for transporting your hormones. This may also help to explain the huge increase in those with depression and other endocrine system disorders, like diabetes.

Dr. Drum has observed that “adding high-potassium foods, especially seaweeds, to the diets of people with A.D.D. (instead of Ritalin) can significantly improve behavior and mental functioning” in children and in adults.

Similarly, fibromyalgia patients, who are: exhausted, forgetful, moody and agitated, as well as those with: anxiety disorders and depression are all favorably improved with high-potassium diets and seaweeds.

Talk to your physician about this and have your doctor contact Dr. Drum (contact info is on his web-site http://www.ryandrum.com.
Potassium supplementation and levels must always be monitored carefully. Too much and too little are both bad.

Well, we’re not done yet, but it’s enough for now.

Best to all — Em

Read more in the Title Archive on the upper navigation bar.

(c)2009 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com
If you would like to quote from or include this article, please contact me at the About Me page above in order to get permission. Please respect my copyright. Thanks!

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

(c)2009 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com Spring Green Kefir Soup (c)2009 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com Swirling Gazpacho Kefir Soup

“Listen-up!” diabetics, pregnant Moms, breast-feeding Moms, overweight people,  pre-diabetics and those with digestive troubles — go out to the health food store or supermarket and get some plain kefir, now! You’re about to learn about a food which can change your life (or your baby’s life!).

You’ll be able to use the kefir you purchase in a recipe or two below, by the end of the weekend, and get yourself going on a better path to Health.

Firstly, a quick overview and a reminder to read last week’s post (if you haven’t already). Kefir is a cultured milk product, more beneficial than yoghurt because of the microflora strains it contains (some products have 7 – 10 strains, whereas yoghurt usually only includes 2 families).

Probiotic bacteria are important because these microflora make critical products for your immune system and nutritional well-being. Different strains make and behave differently.

Normally, you have about 300 different strains of bacteria in your gut, and those double in number one or two times a day. About 10 – 12 pounds of your body weight is this intestinal colony! If you are healthy, most of your colony consists of healthy families but, if you are unwell, then more of your colony is bad-guy types. They may or may not be ones to kill you, but they will age you or make you ill.

As diabetics are starving for nutrition (much of your nutrient reservoir is robbed by extra urination and lack of enzymes), and as all babies’ guts are sterile when born (and must be populated by “seeding” through the mother’s milk), having the right probiotic bacteria, in the right ratios is critical. Probiotic foods can populate your gut with the friendlies you require.

Mom’s have only about a 2 – 3 month window to largely determine their child’s intestinal profile for life. The intestinal bacteria blueprint ratio is almost as individual as finger-prints, and is remarkably stable unless you know you must change it and work to do so.

Reasons you might need to help: if you become seriously or chronically ill or chronically stressed (then self-regulation tends to break down — as it does when you eat poorly, too).

The Ayurvedic medical texts of 5,000 – 6,000 years ago already tell of the benefits of fermented milk saying that ‘fermented milk leads to a long and healthy life’!  Pliny, the Roman historian writes in 76CE that he was treating gastro-intestinal infections with fermented milk.

Now, when I say “fermented” milk, this is a very specific,  purposeful, cleanly-cultured food product, not just some left-over or random happenstance.

These properly fermented, pro-biotic foods — slow fermented sauerkraut (usually not made commercially *), natto, miso, tempeh, slow fermented pickles *, kim chee, yoghurt, kefir, lait ribot (from Brittany, in France, which uses buttermilk, rather than whole milk) — provide beneficial bacteria to keep your body healthy in many, many ways which we’ll learn here, over time and several articles.

All of these are traditional foods e.g. lait ribot has been made in Brittany for thousands of years, well back into the time when it was made there by tribes of Gauls.

It is important to eat these foods in ways which keep the beneficial bacteria alive, as they run the gauntlet of  dashing through your stomach acid, by potent bile and much more, to hopefully arrive, safe and secure (and still in large numbers) to make a home in your small intestine, daily.

Like any other living organisms, the friendly microflora are killed by freezing and boiling and oven temperatures, so even though there are lots of recipes for ice-cream, soups and muffins etc. etc. understand you are compromising getting live inoculations to boost your intestinal colonies, if you use those cooking methods.

However, if you use kefir in these types of recipes, the product will still be superior to using plain milks, as the friendlies have already increased the actual nutrition in the milk, while they were alive, even if you kill them later.

I prefer to try to walk the middle path, and use my kefir cold from the refrigerator. So the recipes I feature in the photos above are cold soups. The middle-ground for ice-cream and parfaits, is keep it soft and not really as ice-cream, if you want to keep some of the friendly bacteria alive. Adding and pureeing some frozen berries goes a long way to accomplishing that, rather than putting the kefir in the freezer.

Kefir is likely a Turkhish word derived from “keif” meaning “good-feeling”. Kefir is pronounced “k’feer” but many mispronounce it as “kee-fur”.

Using a purchased culture of “kefir grains”, it can be made from many types of milk, as well as super-healthy young coconut water (and an Australian has even made a water version that behaves like a healthy “champagne”).

But, kefir must be made by the actual grains, which are removed and re-used, so you cannot use a commercial kefir as a “starter” the way you can with yoghurt, as the dairies removed the grains of kefir before they bottled it.

The first site I remember coming across about kefir was probably Dom’s when he started in about 1999. You can still learn more there than just about anywhere else. The reference is below. Starters are available from Donna Gates, at bodyecology.com

More on kefir and probiotics — how they help; why you need them; how they can retrieve your health will continue next time. Meanwhile, here’s a quick cold soup – two versions.


Em’s Spring Green Kefir Soup

In a blender or food processor:

2 English cucumbers – washed and chunked

1/3 – 1/2 small yellow onion, peeled and washed

3 medium size garlic cloves, sliced somewhat

2 giant pinches of rough-chopped fresh dill (tops and stems)

Blend all of these ingredients — taste. Add more onion or garlic if needed. It’s impossible to say how much as some onions are very raucous (but the strong flavor comes from sulfur, which is why they are healthy!). The same is true about garlic. You can always add more, but having too much at first is almost impossible to undo.

After you decide if you want to add some sea salt and / or some cayenne pepper, you are now ready to add the kefir.

1 quart plain kefir

Combine gently, without using the blender … remember, we’re trying to keep these helpful little-guys alive!

Serve immediately with a dash of chives.     Makes about 2 quarts.

VARIATION:Swirling Gazpacho Kefir Soup

for every portion of Spring Green Kefir Soup, add half again as much organic tomato juice, just into the center of the green soup. Gently swirl.

For example: 8 oz. green soup + 4 oz. tomato juice.

You can also add a dash of Worcestershire sauce and an 1/16t of Bragg’s apple cider vinegar or lemon juice, if you find the need. It will be more like a Bloody Mary, then!

Why I used these ingredients and how they’ll help you:

The cucumbers help alkalize your tissues.

The onions provide sulfur to make potent detoxifiers.

The garlic is a natural anti-viral and anti-bacterial, if it is raw.

The dill is for flavor and the B vitamins all green leafies have.

The sea salt will alkalize. (Do NOT use regular table salt!!!)

The cayenne is important for your heart and circulation.

The kefir will provide all the probiotic, live, friendly bacteria families.

The tomato juice will provide other anti-oxidants, especially helpful ones for eyes.

If used, the Bragg’s apple cider vinegar (or Spectrum — only those brands) will alkalize (yes, you read that right. I leaves alkaline ash, after metabolism.)

The lemon juice will alkalize (yes, it’s citric acid, but as note above, for metabolic ash).

Worcestershire sauce is just for flavor, put if you use an Asian Fish sauce, instead, you will get some beneficial enzymes, if it has not been overly processed.


Experiment with smoothies, but, again, whirl everything before you add the kefir, as much as possible. Some great smoothie recipes – Dom’s


Read last week’s Introduction to Kefir and to bowel health and to the opinions of Dr. Mercola and Dr. Ron Rosedale

* In America and Canada, Bubbe’s Brand is properly slow-fermented and available in many health stores and some supermarkets.

And, CultureBiota is an artisanal food maker in Portland, Oregon with the same kinds of slow probiotic products, truly traditional foods. Health stores will generally have healthier and organic forms of the Asian foods, but check out Asian groceries, too, for miso, tempeh and natto, as well as kim chee.

Preferably, consider Nancy’s brand of kefir, as it is made with milk from grass-fed cows and uses low-glycemic agave for sweetener.

Note, kefir has a very mild laxative property, which many people need.

You should definitely include kefir as part of the regimen when taking anti-biotics and for up to a couple of months after them.

Naturopathic physicians recommend kefir over yoghurt for those with digestive problems because kefir has very low curd tension, which makes ir very digestible.

Kefir has the potential to be a potent help in cancer prevention due to its high concentration of lactic acid.

Use for starter culture source for kefir grains

The most comprehensive kefir site I know – Dom’s

Traditionally fermented foods – CultureBiota

(c)2009 Em https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please write for my permission to quote from or use my article. Thanks for respecting my original work and copyright.

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

Welcome to our new grandson! My daughter and her baby are doing well, but it was a long journey, during this past week.

(c)2009 Em, https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com Our new Grandson, Day 1

As I think about all I pray for and hope for on their behalf, it brings out some topics worth discussing which will be reflected in my lessons and discussions here, which will appear in time.

It’s a chance to grow, for all of us.

Best to all — Em

(c)2009 Em https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com


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