SUMMARY: Microbiome Awareness TMAO was summarized in the May 26th seminar, and I suggested condiment size portions for red meat regardless of meat quality (pastured or confined feed lot operations). Carnitine in red meat acts as an antioxidant and plays a crucial role in the mitochondria—the energy-producing structures in cells—notably in muscles, including heart muscle. But carnitine has a dark side — TMAO. This post shares TMAO follow-up so that all can benefit, even those unable to attend! A subsequent post will share more conversation from that evening, but TMAO is a lot of good information, and it deserves a post of its own.
SUMMARY: This… Thanksgiving morning! Homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Spread. Actually, don’t save this for only one day; we certainly don’t! Easily make this in bulk and freeze.
Ingredients and Processing I Prefer to Use
The nut ingredients in this recipe make these bars an advanced food for those on healing diets such as SCD, UMass IBD-AID, GAPS, or PALEO. For this very reason, I recommend using these instructions to properly prepare nut and seed ingredients whenever possible to make such more easily digestible. But if you don’t do this step, no worries since the notes section of the recipe provides alternate instructions for toasting those nuts! The recipe is not SCD/GAPS legal due to the cocoa, but it is in accordance with UMass version of SCD which is called IBD-AID, PALEO and also FODMAP friendly if maple syrup is substituted for the dates; details are broken out below the recipe for those interested.
SUMMARY: Women (eating the Mediterranean diet) consuming certain healthy fats were less likely to have a breast cancer diagnosis while other fats increased the likelihood of a breast cancer diagnosis. Seventeen women on the low-fat diet developed breast cancer, compared with 10 on the Mediterranean diet with nuts and eight on the Mediterranean diet with olive oil.
In particular, women consuming a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) were less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer. The women in the extra virgin olive oil-heavy Mediterranean diet group got 22% of their total calories from the oil, on average. However, the researchers wrote that getting at least 15% of total calories in the form of extra virgin olive oil “seems to be instrumental for obtaining this significant protection.” If you use EVOO, please make sure you use unadulterated EVOO… scroll down to the lightbulb here for those details.
Summary: Now is the time to be wary of and consider eliminating polyunsaturated fatty acids soybean oil and corn oil (as well as vegetable oil —since this typically contains soybean oil) as they were found to:
- Link to diabetes and metabolic syndrome. In the US, metabolic syndrome is estimated to be present in 20–30% of adults and 3–10% of children [100,101].
- Significantly affect the expression of many genes that metabolize drugs and other foreign compounds that enter the body, suggesting that a soybean oil-enriched diet could affect one’s response to drugs and environmental toxicants. The single most highly represented family of dysregulated genes was that of the [key liver detox] cytochrome P450 (Cyp) genes (30 genes total).
Also worth noting: the soybean plus fructose diet had less severe metabolic effects compared to the soybean oil diet, but it did cause more negative effects in the kidney and a marked increase in prolapsed rectums, a symptom of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which like obesity is on the rise.
SUMMARY: The focus of this post is to better your understanding of vegetable oils and unsaturated fats. Raw vegetable salads are chock-full of important vitamins and nutrients, but the latest science says you won’t get much benefit without eating them along with both the right type & amount of fat. In fact, essentially no or very low absorption of carotenoids was observed when salads with fat-free salad dressing were consumed (see this study or this study, Table 3.)
In this post learn: the preferred fat/oil for best carotenoid absorption, that you can actually ditch dressing and instead add half an avocado, or you can add cooked eggs to an incredibly small amount of dressing to even further boost carotenoid absorption. Make certain you consider the sections entitled What inhibits Carotenoid Absorption for possible impact due to your particular health status, and the tips for Decoding Labels.