Are Organic Foods Really Better for You?

This is a very relevant question to ask when making decisions about where to spend your hard-earned dollars. Frequently, though not always, organic foods cost more than non-organic or conventionally raised foods. Is the higher price really worth it?

There are many reasons to buy organic besides purely human health, but according to a recent Washington State University study, which looked at the nutritional differences between organic and conventional strawberries, it seems organic really is a better choice.

The researchers involved in the study tested 26 commercial strawberry operations in the state of California over a period of 2 years to reach the conclusion that organic strawberries really are better for you. What they found specifically is that the organic strawberries had significantly higher concentrations of antioxidants and vitamin C. Continue reading “Are Organic Foods Really Better for You?”

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Love Your Liver

Your liver takes a lot of abuse. As a major organ of detoxification in the body, it must be able to process thousands of chemicals from food, your body, the environment, medications, and chemicals released from infectious organisms. Poor diet, overeating, excessive intake of fats, sugars, alcohol, and environmental agents can all negatively affect liver health. Your life depends on the liver’s role in protecting your body from toxin build-up. If the liver isn’t functioning optimally, then there is a greater chance of cellular damage throughout the body. Are you taking care of your liver?

Three important ways to optimize liver function:

1) Protect your liver cells with the herb milk thistle, phosphatidylcholine, and antioxidants such as vitamin A, E, C, beta-carotene and selenium.

2) Improve bile flow by eating bitter foods (endive, chicory, radicchio, mustard greens, dandelion leaf/root) and herbs (gentian, artichoke leaves, hops, barberry).

3) Improve detoxification by eating garlic and cruciferous vegetables (cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, kale, etc.), eating protein (supplies important amino acids needed to bind toxic materials), and getting adequate amounts of minerals such as magnesium, calcium, and zinc, which are essential components of many enzymes needed for detoxification.

Three Pathway supplements designed to support liver health: Continue reading “Love Your Liver”

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5 Tips for Safer Barbecuing

Recently, I had someone ask me the following question: “In the summer I really enjoy having friends and family over for cookouts. But, I have heard that barbecuing can be bad for your health. Is this true?”

Great question. The answer is yes, but don’t cancel your BBQ plans just yet. Research has identified two carcinogenic by-products associated with barbecuing red meat, poultry, lamb, pork and fish. The two carcinogens to be aware of are heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). HCAs are formed from high temperatures overcooking or char-grilling meat. Studies have shown that this compound can cause cancer in mice. And, PAHs are formed when fat drips onto the coal or hot surface. The smoke carries the PAHs to the food. They can also form directly on the food when it is charred.

With this in mind, here are ways of making your barbecued foods safer:

Continue reading “5 Tips for Safer Barbecuing”

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Eating a Different Kind of Greens

We all know the benefits of eating spinach, broccoli, cabbage and kale, but there are different kinds of greens that also offer amazing nutritional value, as well as many potential health benefits. Sea greens – like blue green algae, spirulina, chlorella and kelp – have vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, as well as antioxidant properties. People who take greens on a regular basis report that they have more energy and vitality.  But how do you pick the best one for you? Well, many formulas contain a combination of these greens along with barley and alfalfa powders to maximize nutritional content. But if you want to try only one, here is a  a description of  some of the “sea greens” and their benefits.

Spirulina : This super food is actually a member of the blue green algae family and is the most nutrient dense. It also contains all nine essential amino acids, important to help build and maintain the body’s proteins. It also contains more Vitamin A than carrots, more iron than beef, is a profound source of protective phytochemicals, is naturally low in fat, a source of the essential fatty acid GLA, and it is easy to digest. Not too shabby. Continue reading “Eating a Different Kind of Greens”

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5 Favorite Phytonutrients Found in Fruits and Vegetables

Phytonutrients are naturally occurring plant compounds that give fruits and vegetables their color, taste and smell. And, they provide us with numerous health protective properties. More and more studies are showing that the risk of major chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes, and some cancers can be reduced with diets rich in plant phytonutrients. To get a variety of phytonutrients in your diet, I recommend eating at least two servings of fruits and five servings of vegetables daily. And, include lots of spices in your diet, such as turmeric, ginger, rosemary, and oregano. Here is a list of my 5 favorite plant compounds:
Continue reading “5 Favorite Phytonutrients Found in Fruits and Vegetables”

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Our Bloggers

  • Paula Gallagher
    Paula Gallagher
    Paula is a highly qualified and experienced nutrition counselor on the staff at Village Green.
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  • Margo Gladding
    Margo Gladding
    Margo's impressive knowledge base is the result of a unique blend of educational and professional experience.
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  • Dr. Neal Barnard
    Dr. Neal Barnard
    Dr. Barnard leads programs advocating for preventive medicine, good nutrition, and higher ethical standards in research.
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  • Joseph Pizzorno
    Dr. Joseph Pizzorno
    Dr. Joseph Pizzorno, ND is a pioneer of integrative medicine and a leading authority on science-based natural medicine.
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  • Debi Silber
    Debi Silber
    Debi is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in nutrition, a personal trainer, and whole health coach.
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  • Teri Cochrane
    Teri Cochrane
    Teri is a is a Certified Coach Practitioner with extensive certifications and experience in holistic medicinal practices.
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  • Dr. Rav Ivker
    Dr. Rav Ivker
    Dr. Rav Ivker is a holistic family physician, health educator, and best-selling author.
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  • Susan Levin
    Susan Levin
    Susan writes about the connection between plant-based diets and a reduced risk of chronic diseases.
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  • Rob Brown
    Dr. Rob Brown
    Dr. Brown's blended perspective of healthcare includes a deeply rooted passion for wellness and spiritual exploration.
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