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There Is Nothing In The World More Powerful In Its Effect On Human Health, Than Food!

Dr Natasha Campbell-McBrideWe live in a world of nutritional misinformation coming from commercial powers and funded by them as nutritional ‘science’. Using food as medicine requires real information, which the real science provides all the time. But the real science is too poor to spread their knowledge through the mainstream media, so the population only hears what somebody with a large wallet wants them to hear. So, what is the truth about food?

We eat at least three times a day, sometimes more often. Every morsel of food you eat changes your metabolism and your health. Western health systems are crumbling under the burden of chronic disease, physical and mental. The first and most important cause of these illnesses is consumption of processed foods.

When Mother Nature made our human bodies, she at the same time provided us with every food we need to stay healthy, active and full of energy. However, we have to eat these foods in the form that Nature made them. Industrial processing that we subject the food to changes its chemical and biological structure. Our bodies were not designed to have these changed foods! The more food is processed, the more nutrient depleted and chemically altered it becomes. Apart from losing its nutritional value, processed food loses most of its other properties: taste, flavour and colour. To compensate for that, various chemicals are added: flavour enhancers, colours, various E numbers (“European” numbers for food additives) and other additives, contributing to inflammation, cancer, memory loss, hyperactivity and learning disabilities, psychiatric disorders and other health problems.

Natural foods do not keep very long, so industry changes them into various chemical concoctions, which are then packaged nicely and presented to us as ‘food’. ‘Food’ that is made to suit commercial purposes where health considerations never enter the calculation. The manufacturers are obliged to list all the ingredients on the label. However, if the manufacturer uses an ingredient that has already been processed or is made from processed substances, this manufacturer is not obliged to list what that ingredient was made from. So, if you are trying to avoid something in particular, like sugar or gluten, for example, reading an ingredient list may not always help you.

If we look at supermarket shelves, we will see that the bulk of processed foods are carbohydrates. Breakfast cereals, crisps, soft drinks and beer, biscuits, crackers, breads, pastries, pastas, chocolates, sweets, jams, condiments, sugar, soft drinks, snacks, preserved fruit and vegetables and frozen precooked meals with starches and batter are all highly processed carbohydrates. When we eat them, they put the body in a fat-storing mode, which causes weight gain and obesity; our world obesity epidemic is caused by processed carbohydrates. They create chronic systemic inflammation in the body, leading to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and many other chronic degenerative conditions. Processed carbohydrates feed pathogenic microbes in the gut, damaging your gut flora and making your immune system ineffective.

Sugar is the most addictive substance on the planet and a large percent of the Western population is addicted to it. Sugar addiction is the basis for developing all other addictions (drugs, alcohol, tobacco, dangerous behaviour, gambling, etc). In order to metabolise only one molecule of sugar, your body requires around 56 molecules of magnesium, dozens of molecules of vitamins, enzymes, minerals and other nutrients. When we analyse a piece of fresh sugar cane or sugar beet in their natural state in a laboratory, we find that every molecule of sugar in them is, indeed, equipped with 56 molecules of magnesium and all those other nutrients. So, when we eat natural sugar cane and sugar beet without processing them, the sugar in these plants gets used by the body well and brings us only health.

But we do not eat sugar beet or sugar cane in their natural form. We extract the sugar out of them and throw everything else away. That pure sugar comes into the body like a villain, like a highway robber pulling nutrients out of our bones, muscles, brain and other tissues in order to be metabolised. It needs those 56 molecules of magnesium! Where is all that magnesium going to come from? From your bones, your muscles and other organs. Consumption of sugar is a major reason for the widespread magnesium deficiency in our modern society, leading to high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes, neurological, immune, behavioural and many other problems. Other nutrients will also be depleted in your body as a result of eating sugar, leading to disease.

Processed fats: margarines, butter replacements, spreadable butter, vegetable oils, cooking oils, hydrogenated oils, shortenings and many other are alien to our human physiology and must not be consumed. You will find processed fats in most processed foods and they are made from plant oils. All plant oils contain fragile polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are easily damaged by heat, light and oxygen. That is why Mother Nature has hidden them away very carefully in the cellular structure of plants – in their oily seeds, leaves, stems and roots. When we eat plants in their natural form, we get these oils in their pristine state and they are good for us. But when we take plants to our big factories and extract the oils from them, high temperatures, pressure and various chemicals are employed, which change the structure of fragile fatty acids in the plant matter creating a plethora of unnatural, chemically mutilated, harmful fats. These oils have conclusively been proven to cause cancer, heart disease, diabetes, neurological damage, infertility, immune abnormalities and other health problems.

More than 90% of all salt produced is used for industrial applications, which require pure sodium chloride. Salt in Nature contains more than 90 elements: in fact, natural crystal salt and whole sea salt contain all the minerals and trace elements that the human body is made of. Because the industry requires pure sodium chloride, all other elements and minerals are removed from the natural salt. It is sold under the name of ‘table salt’ and all our processed foods contain plenty of it. This kind of salt upsets our homeostasis on the most basic level. Natural salt is just as fundamental to our physiology as water is. We need to consume salt in its natural state: as a crystal salt from salt mines or as whole unprocessed sea salt. There are a number of companies around the world that can provide you with good quality natural salt.

Soya is very big business and a large percentage of the industry uses genetically modified soya. Soya can be found in many processed foods, margarines, salad dressings and sauces, breads, biscuits, pizza, baby food, children’s snacks, sweets, cakes, vegetarian products, dairy replacements, infant milk formulas, etc. In Japan and other eastern cultures soya is traditionally used as a whole bean or fermented as soy sauce, tofu, natto, miso and tempeh. The form in which soya is used in the West is called soy protein isolate – a tasteless powder, easy to use and add to any processed food. It is a highly processed substance with non-existent nutritional value and a lot of harmful qualities. It is linked to cancer, autism, inflammation, mental illness and other degenerative conditions in humans. It destroys your thyroid function, upsets the hormonal balance in your body and it is a powerful allergen.

These are just a few most common ingredients in processed foods. If good health is important to us, all processed ‘foods’ should be avoided.

What should we eat to be healthy and full of energy?

Let’s start with shopping. Buy your food in the shape and form that Nature has made it and prepare it yourself at home, using traditional methods of cooking: on the stove, the grill or in the oven. Avoid microwaves or induction stoves, as they destroy food and can make it carcinogenic.

  1. Buy meat and fish, fresh or frozen, including game, organ meats and shell fish.

Contrary to popular belief, it is meats, fish and other animal products that have the highest content of protein, vitamins, amino acids, nourishing fats, many minerals and other nutrients which we humans need on a daily basis. If we compare the amounts of vitamins in meat, fish or other animal products with plant foods, it is the animal products that are at the top of the list.

Vitamin B1 (thiamine): the richest sources are pork, liver, heart and kidneys.
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): the richest sources are eggs, meat, milk, poultry and fish.
Vitamin B3 (niacin): the richest sources are meat and poultry.
Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): the richest sources are meat and liver.
Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): the richest sources are meat, poultry, fish and eggs.
Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin): the richest sources are meat, poultry, fish, eggs and milk.
Biotin: the richest sources are liver and egg yolks.
Vitamin A: the richest sources are liver, fish, egg yolks and butter. We are talking about the real vitamin A, which is ready for the body to use. You will see in many publications that you can get your vitamin A from fruit and vegetables in the form of carotenoids. The problem is that carotenoids have to be converted into real vitamin A in the body, and a lot of us are unable to do this conversion, because we are too toxic or because we have an ongoing inflammation in the body. So, if you do not consume animal products with the real vitamin A, then you may develop a deficiency in this vital vitamin despite eating lots of carrots. Vitamin A deficiency will lead to impaired immunity and development of any chronic illness in the body, because without this vitamin and other fat-soluble vitamins the body cannot use protein, fats, minerals and all other nutrients.

Vitamin D: the richest food sources are fish liver oils, eggs and fish.

Vitamin K2 (menaquinone): the richest sources are organ meats, full-fat cheese, good quality butter and cream (yellow from grass-fed animals), animal fats and egg yolks. This vitamin is essential for our health, its deficiency leads to deposition of calcium in the soft tissues and initiation of inflammation. Apart from the high fat foods, an important source of this vitamin is our own gut flora: the probiotic bacteria in the gut produce and release vitamin K2. Fermented foods contain vitamin K2 as the bacteria produce it in the process of fermentation; natto (fermented soy beans) is one of the richest sources in Eastern culture while in the West well-aged natural full-fat cheese is a good source of this vitamin.

All these vitamins are absolutely essential for us. Three well-researched vitamins, which are generally thought to come from plants, are vitamin C, folate and vitamin K1 (phylloquinone). However, now we know that liver and other organ meats contain good amounts of both vitamin C and folate. I have a growing group of patients who have to stay on the No-Plant GAPS Diet, where nothing from the plant kingdom is consumed at all. These are children and adults with severe digestive problems, mental illness and autoimmune illness. This diet allows them to recover from their illnesses, come off all medication and feel well. There are no deficiencies of any nutrients that can be detected in these people, which shows that human beings can live perfectly well without plants at all! (the No-Plant GAPS Diet is described in my new book Gut And Physiology Syndrome).

Organ meats (liver, kidney, heart, brain, tongue, etc) have been considered to be a delicacy and the most valuable food in all traditional cultures. These foods contain concentrated amounts of nutrients. Liver is an absolute powerhouse of nutrition for our physiology and should be consumed on a regular basis, particularly by people with nutritional deficiencies. People with anaemia should have fresh liver and red meats daily (lamb, beef, game and organ meats in particular), because these foods are the best remedy for anaemia. The mainstream misinformation about meats, particularly red meats, has been driven by commercial powers, which profit from replacing these natural foods with their processed alternatives. Fresh, natural meats have nothing to do with heart disease, cancer or any other disease, and are important for us to eat in order to provide all the nutrients we, humans, need.

2. Buy fresh eggs from free-range pastured hens, preferably organic.

Eggs are a wonder food, full of easy-to-digest nutrition. A fresh, raw egg yolk is absorbed literally without needing digestion and provides you with almost every nutrient in the best biochemical form. Any person with memory loss must have at least three, preferably five to six, fresh eggs a day. It has been demonstrated in a number of clinical trials that eating fresh eggs improves memory and learning ability.

3. Buy natural organic dairy, preferably raw (unpasteurised).

Raw unprocessed milk, cream, butter, ghee, live yoghurt, kefir and natural cheeses, produced in a traditional way, are full of wonderful nutrition and are important for us to consume. Milk must come from native breeds of animals, not from commercial breeds. Many people cannot tolerate pasteurised milk products, because pasteurisation destroys the structure of milk. Unprocessed, unpasteurised, straight-from-the-animal milk is very easy to digest as it contains enzymes that digest the milk for you to some degree. Pasteurisation of milk is a major contributor to lactose intolerance in the population. Raw fresh milk contains an active enzyme, lactase, to digest the lactose for you, but this enzyme is destroyed by pasteurisation. Many lactose-intolerant people find that they can digest raw milk perfectly well.

4. Buy and use only natural fats.

The best fats for humans to consume and to cook with are animal fats! Plant oils are best consumed as part of the whole plant. Extracting them from plants damages them, making them harmful. On top of that a majority of plant oils are too rich in omega-6 fatty acids. Consuming vegetable cooking oils causes an excess of this substance in the body, leading to chronic inflammation, autoimmunity, infertility, cancer, heart disease and other problems. Cook with animal fats, such as lard, pork dripping, lamb fat, beef fat, goose fat, duck fat, etc. It is best to do what our grandmothers did: collect the fats yourself after cooking your meats; they will keep in a glass jar in your refrigerator for a long time and are excellent to use for cooking. Roasting a duck will provide you with a cup of excellent fat, which has been proven to be heart protective. Roasting a large goose will provide you with even more of an excellent cooking fat. You can buy some of these fats from a traditional butcher. You can also cook with butter, ghee and natural coconut oil. All these fats are healthy for us and very stable: they generally do not change their chemical structure when we cook with them, they can even be reused.

5. What about cholesterol and saturated fats?

When we talk about animal fats, a question about cholesterol and saturated fats invariably comes up, because everybody has heard about these substances ‘clogging up your arteries’ and ‘causing heart disease’. This idea came from the diet-heart hypothesis, first proposed in 1953. Since then this hypothesis has been proven to be completely wrong by many scientific studies. George Mann, eminent American physician and scientist, called the diet-heart hypothesis ‘the greatest scientific deception of this century, perhaps of any century’. Why? Because, while science was working on proving the hypothesis wrong, the medical, political and scientific establishments fully committed to it. To admit that they were wrong would do too much damage to their reputation, so they are not in a hurry to do that. In the meantime, their closed ranks give complete freedom to the commercial companies to exploit the diet-heart hypothesis to their advantage. Their relentless propaganda through the popular media ensures long life for the faulty diet-heart hypothesis.

Thanks to the promoters of the diet-heart hypothesis, everybody ‘knows’ that cholesterol and saturated fats are ‘evil’ and have to be fought at every turn. If you believe the popular media you would think that there is simply no level of cholesterol low enough.

The truth is that we humans cannot live without cholesterol and saturated fats. They are major structural elements of every cell, every tissue and organ in your body, particularly the brain. Our immune system, our hormonal balance, healing any damage do not work without an ample supply of these vital substances. To understand this subject fully, please read my book Put Your Heart In Your Mouth. What really causes heart disease and what we can do to prevent and even reverse it.

Buy only plants (vegetables, fruit, nuts, legumes, grains, etc), which have been grown on rich healthy soils without any chemicals.
There are two important points to understand about plant foods.

First: they are difficult for humans to digest! The only things in Nature that can truly digest plants are microbes, which have incredible abilities to ferment carbohydrates, break down proteins, starch and fibre, release vitamins, and generally turn the plant matter into a form that other creatures can benefit from. This is exactly what Mother Nature used to help the herbivorous animals to digest plants and extract nutrients from them. Mother Nature equipped them with a very special digestive system, called a rumen, full of plant-breaking microbes that digest the plants for the animal. Humans don’t have a rumen! We have one small stomach with virtually no microbes in it, and it is only able to break down meat, fish, milk and eggs effectively. Our stomach is designed perfectly to digest animal foods!

Plants, however, do not digest in our stomach to any degree; they have to wait to move out of the stomach into the intestines, where pancreatic enzymes and bile are added to the mix to break down the food further. But even there the plants don’t digest well. We can only break down a small part of cooked starch and absorb some juices, sugars and vitamins. The bulk of the plant – the fibre and most starch – is indigestible for the human gut. It goes through the intestines and then lands in the bowel, which is the equivalent of the rumen in the human body. This is where the majority of our gut flora resides: bacteria, fungi, protozoa, viruses, worms and other creatures work on the plant matter and extract from it what they can.

The difference between the herbivorous animals and us is that their rumen is at the beginning of their gut, while our ‘rumen’ – the bowel – is at the end. In herbivorous animals the plant matter is digested well in the rumen, before it moves down into the part of the gut where absorption of nutrients happens. In humans the bulk of our food absorption happens higher up in the intestines, where plants cannot be digested. So, the nutrients that we absorb in the intestines come largely from animal foods, which were digested well in the stomach. In short, the bulk of the nutrition that our bodies thrive on comes from animal foods! People knew this fact through experience for millennia. They knew that the most nourishing foods for them came from animals; they would eat plants as a supplement to meat or when animal foods were in short supply. To understand this subject in detail, please read my book Vegetarianism Explained. Making an Informed Decision.

Second: all plants, particularly their seeds (grains, legumes, nuts and seeds), must be properly prepared before consumption! They contain a plethora of chemicals, called antinutrients, which damage our digestive system and the rest of the human body and can trigger a chronic disease. Soaking, sprouting and fermentation prior to cooking are essential for all seeds. Vegetables and fruit digest best when fermented and cooked, particularly for people with a sensitive digestive system. If you have digestive problems please study the GAPS Diet in my book Gut And Psychology Syndrome.

In conclusion

When feeding yourself or your family please remember these simple rules: never economise on food and never compromise when it comes to food! Because if you do not eat well, you will not be healthy, and if you do not have your health, you will have no life!

Have you ever wondered what a ‘balanced meal’ means? Our mainstream will tell you that it is proportions of carbs to protein and fat. No, that is not what it means! It means that all your taste buds are singing praises to the meal you eat. Our taste buds are specialised: some perceive sweet, some sour, some perceive salty, some astringent, some perceive pungent and some perceive bitter. All of these tastes should be present in the meal. So, when you make a meal, add some sweet vegetables (carrots and beets for example), some bitter (celery leaves, dark-green leaves, aubergines, courgette, spices and herbs), some chillies, garlic, onion or herbs for a pungent taste, some natural salt or seaweed, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus and turnip for an astringent taste, and some fermented vegetables, vinegar or lemon to satisfy the sour taste. These guidelines will produce very tasty and satisfying meals for you. But, of course, the most important parts of any meal are the meat and the fat! We can cook our vegetables without meat, but we must add good amounts of fat into it! It is the fat that will bring out all the tastes and extract beneficial nutrients from the vegetables. The best fat to cook your vegetables with comes from animals: bacon fat, pork dripping, lard, tallow, lamb fat, goose fat, butter and ghee. Fat is essential for our bodies to be able to use minerals, vitamins, protein and all other nutrients. The more animal fat you add to your meal the more nourishment your body will get out of it.

Eating out a lot is a very unhealthy habit (that includes takeaway meals), because you have no idea what kind of ingredients and cooking methods were used to make your meal. And you have no idea who cooked your meal and with what attitude.

Why is the attitude of the cook important? It is very important because cooking is alchemy. The most important part of any alchemy is the alchemist: the person who makes the meal. The most important actions of the alchemist in the process are his thoughts and attitudes – this is what creates the magic. We, humans, are powerful creatures! If a person who cooks your meal doesn’t like you and wishes you ill, this energy will permeate the meal they prepare for you. This meal will not bring you good health! The meals you eat must be produced by people who love you, who wish you to have the best health and happiness. This kind of meal will bring you good health and healing from any illness.

The person who cooks for the family holds the health of that family in her or his hands. This is power! The health of any nation is not in the hands of governments or the medical profession. It is in the hands of those who cook for that nation! If the nation consumes things cooked by some faceless factories, then that nation will have poor health – exactly what is happening in Western countries. In traditional societies people knew the value of food; they knew that there is nothing more powerful in its effect on human health than food. Women knew that, through cooking, they were holding the health of their families in their hands. They would never relinquish that power to anyone else! They knew what foods to use for what occasions: what is good for babies, what is good for pregnant women, what is good for a couple trying to conceive a baby, what is good for any illness or injury, and what is good for the elderly to eat. Women knew the herbs growing in their location and used them extensively in cooking. This sacred knowledge was passed through generations: from mother to daughter and from grandmother to granddaughter. From the dawn of the food industry, people started losing this knowledge. The food industry advertising lured them away from cooking and deceived them into relinquishing their God-given power – to hold the health of their loved ones in their own hands! The result is the misery of sickness in Western families, which is getting deeper with every generation.

Cooking is not difficult. Forget the recipe books. Cooking is a very creative activity, enjoy it and create your own unique meals every time you cook. Just keep in mind: you are cooking for good health (not convenience, not expediency or anything else). Do your shopping and cooking with this thought. As a result, you will lay a solid foundation for your own health and the health of your family. And a healthy family is usually a happy family!

Dr. Campbell-McBride graduated with Honours as a Medical Doctor in 1984 from Bashkir Medical University in Russia. After practising for five years as a Neurologist and three years as a Neurosurgeon, she started a family and moved to the UK. It was during this time that Dr. Campbell-McBride developed her theories on the relationship between neurological disorders and nutrition. She has specialised in using nutritional approach as a treatment, and has become recognised as one of the world’s leading experts in treating children and adults with learning disabilities and other mental disorders, as well as children and adults with digestive and immune disorders.

In her clinic Dr Campbell-McBride works with many patients with heart disease, high blood pressure, arrhythmia, stroke and other complications of atherosclerosis. She has become acutely aware of the existing confusion about nutrition and these conditions, which spurred an intensive study into this subject.

Dr Natasha is an organic regenerative farmer. In 2012 she and her family purchased a piece of land in East Anglia in the UK, which was commercially farmed for a long time. Since then they have transformed this land into an organic and biodynamic paradise with many animals, birds, bees, gardens and orchards.
She is involved with these websites:
www.gaps.me
www.Doctor-Natasha.com
www.GAPStraining.com