Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe

With Thanksgiving around the corner, I wanted to share our homemade cranberry sauce recipe.  Enjoy!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Yield: ~5 cups

Homemade Cranberry Sauce


  • 2 - 12oz bags Fresh Cranberries
  • 2 cups - Coconut Sugar
  • 1.5 cups - Water
  • 1/2 cup - Orange Juice
  • 2 - ¼ oz Knox Unflavoured Gelatin packets (Sold in boxes of 4)


  1. In a large pot (4 quart), combine 2 cups of water, 1 cup of orange juice and coconut sugar. Add cranberries to the pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Simmer until all berries have burst (10 minutes or so).
  3. Place a large sieve over a bowl and pour the cranberry mixture into it.
  4. Using a large spoon, press cranberry mixture through sieve, until all liquid has been extracted.
  5. In a separate bowl, mix gelatin packets with 1 cup of hot water, and stir until all the gelatin has dissolved.
  6. Stir gelatin mixture into cranberry liquid until combined.
  7. Pour sauce into smaller containers if you wish.
  8. Cool to room temperature then chill until set.

Part of My Story

Due to people making assumptions, I want to clear the air.  I’m extremely health conscious.  I have done a lot of research on the topic after following the ‘everybody knows’ approaches.  ‘Everybody knows’ approaches included dieting (in the sense of restriction), working out beyond what my body could handle, avoiding fats, and taking antiacids.  I’ve learned how wrong following this advice was and how it actually made me much worse.

I have Lyme Disease that was caught late.  There is no cure for what is called ‘Chronic Lyme Disease’.  I find what helps me manage the symptoms, as I try to find what will cure me.  I’ve even had a DNA test that shows my genetic mutations to know what will help my methylation and detox process.  I’ve done extensive research on supplements suited to my health needs.

A few of the issues I’ve had to deal with and have adjusted my life around

First, I was diagnosed with PCOS and the gynecologist decided to test my thyroid, since I also had classic signs of hypothyroidism.  The gynecologist stated she couldn’t translate the results, and I should visit a general practitioner.  It was difficult for me to get a diagnosis, even though the labs showed hypothyroidism.  I finally found a doctor that read the labs (years later) and got put on a synthetic T-4 only version, even after asking to go to a natural product.  After reading many reviews, I found another local doctor.  She saw my labs and said I definitely had hypothyroidism, and I asked to be changed to a natural, desiccated thyroid, which contains both T-3 and T-4.

After a few days on natural thyroid, I felt amazing.  I had peace, which I had never had before.  Unfortunately, that was short lived.  My adrenals started to crash shortly after.  I kept doing what was told; “exercise more and eat less.  Just lose the weight!  Push yourself!”  Sadly, I followed that advice and became bedridden.  My cortisol results were flatlined.  For those that do not know, cortisol should be high in the morning and decrease through the day.  This also controls your sleep cycle.  Once your adrenals are off, you will not be able to function.  I had to be put on hydrocortisone (a corticosteroid) to function.  I was on this for three years before being able to wean completely off.  Thanks ‘everybody knows’!

I discussed with my doctor further, and we decided on an allergy panel.  It’s at this point that I learned I had an allergy to peanuts and wheat.  Wheat was hard to give up, but I did.  My energy was still tanked.  My doctor recommended me to a gastroenterologist.  The gastro doctor tested me for SIBO (positive) and fructose malabsorption, which I had the worst reaction to, including digestive issues, vomiting, and complete brain fog.  Needless to say, that test was also positive.  I had to start following a low FOD-map diet.  Anything with excessive fructose or any fructans was now out of my diet.

After a hard two weeks of giving up fructose, I did feel better, but I still didn’t feel energized.  I then recommended a full food allergy panel to my doctor.  That’s where I learned I was allergic to food groups, not just one item from those groups, such as grains (this includes corn, yes corn is a grain).  After this difficult transition, I finally started to feel a bit better.  It was still difficult to function, but I was able to get out of bed and go out on the rare occasion.  Unfortunately, I was still tired.  I was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

With the lack of food now available in my diet, we upped my fiber intake and protein intake.  Protein digests quickly, so I got to be hungry a lot (will be discussed on a later post).  With a lot of vegetable fiber (insoluble fiber specifically), I started getting horrible, debilitating stomach pain.  It felt like a wire brush scrapping my insides.  Many doctors told me it was my gallbladder, but if you’ve read my previous article, it was not.  I even had a consultation with a surgeon.  All doctors told me it was my gallbladder.  I knew my body better at this point.  Come to find out, I have too LOW of stomach acid, which has many of the same symptoms as too high of stomach acid.  Most people that have acid reflux, regurgitation issues, and other issues usually have low stomach acid, instead of the ‘everybody knows’ too high stomach acid.  (I will have a post on this in the future).  Once I corrected my low stomach acid, the wire brush feeling subsided, but at this point my adrenals were back down due to the extreme inflammation.  I started to question everything I was told that ‘everybody knows’ about health.

I had barely any carbohydrates in my diet.  However, I was insanely hungry.  Energy is either from sugars (even complex carbs are broken into sugars) or fats.  Since I was avoiding fats still and my diet had nearly no carbs, I stayed hungry until a friend recommended Keto, a high-fat/low-carb diet that fit perfectly into how I was already having to avoid most carbs.  I was hesitant because ‘everybody knows’ “fat is bad”.  It’s at this point where I started massive research and learned where ‘everybody knows’ is wrong the majority of the time.  This was before articles came out in most of the country saying how wrong they were about the saturated fat myth.  After increasing my fat, my cholesterol greatly improved (remember I was low fat before) and I started slowly getting better.  This was part of the missing piece.

Shortly after this, I got diagnosed with late-caught Lyme Disease and started treatment.  The treatment helped very briefly, maybe for 2 days.  If you’ve done any research on Lyme Disease, it’s shaped like a corkscrew and can spiral deep into tissues.  There is currently no cure for late caught Lyme disease.  If it’s caught within the first month of infection, there’s hope.

With knowing about having Lyme Disease, I started researching about methylation and detoxing.  I had a genetic test performed to see what I need to work with my body (I also got genealogy results from it!).  I learned I can’t process the synthetic form of B-12, cynocobalamin nor the active form of methylcobalamin.  I have to have a special form called hydroxocobalamin.  You can learn more about B-12 here.  In addition, I learned about not being able to absorb vitamin D correctly as well as protein adding to the toxins in my body.  There are many more things, but this would be an even longer post.  I may try to write about genetics in a later post.

Once I found the supplements I was lacking and that worked with my body, not just random ones that ‘health’ companies try to sell, I’ve been getting continually better.  Add that to eating organic as much as possible, including avoiding man-made fats (Saturated Fat MythCooking Oils). I’m able to do more physical things, but still not staying 100%.  I’m getting there!

I want to leave you with foods I avoid due to all my allergies.  Do not assume you know what people do or eat. Unless they specifically tell you or you’re their doctor, you do not know!

NO GRAINS (corn/maize, rice, wheat, rye, barley, oat, quinoa, dextrose, malt, maize starch/corn starch, sodium erythorbate, maltodextrin, etc)
NO PEANUT (peanut, peanut oil, peanut butter, etc.)
NO TREE NUTS (almond, cashew, hazelnut, pecan, pine nut, pistachio, walnut, etc.).
NO SOY (soy bean, soy sauce, miso, soy lecithin, etc.)
NO SESAME SEED Family (sesame, mustard, sunflower)
NO MSG (mono-sodium glutamate)
NO FRUCTOSE (fructose, glucose-fructose syrup, agave, high fructose corn syrup, honey, sugar alcohols (ends in ‘itol’), inulin, apples, artichokes, asparagus, cabbage, broccoli, onions, peas, carrageenan, etc) – Must follow mod. FODMAP
NO VEGETABLE OILS (Canola/rapeseed, Safflower, Sunflower [allergy], Soy [allergy], Corn [allergy])

Media Continues The Saturated Fat Myth

Media Continues The Saturated Fat Myth

While I sat at the table this morning, I saw a headline in The Daily Mail (pictured) stating coconuts are not ‘good for you’.  Knowing what I know about nutrition and health, my curiosity was engaged.  (Granted, The Daily Mail has a lot of false nutrition “advice”.)  As I flipped to the section, I was dumbfounded at the continued myth the media continues to push, even with all of the mounting evidence and retractions made against natural saturated fats.  These fallacies continue the spread of ignorance.

When most people thing about ‘fatty foods’ (I’m using that term only as a way to convey most people’s mentality.), they think about things like hamburgers, pizzas, doughnuts, french fries, icecream, etc.  The issue lies in what the main ingredients are in these foods.  I’ll give you a hint, it’s actually not fat!  The main ingredient in a plain hamburger is the bun; in pizza, it’s the crust; in doughnuts, it’s the bread; in fries, it’s the potato; in icecream, it’s the sugar added!  These foods aren’t ‘fatty’ but more ‘carby’.  I’m not saying carbs are all bad.  I want to make people think about what they’ve been led to believe and question it.

Natural saturated fats are actually healthy for people.  Saturated fats assist with hormone creation and balance.  Cholesterol, from fatty acids, is needed for cells to even function (as previously stated).  When the “research” (using that term loosely for this instance) came out and bits and pieces were used, that’s when ‘fat is evil’ came to be.

A scientist, named Ancel Keys, researched 22 countries, but only a handful of countries were used for this hypothesis.  His study did not take into account lifestyle, such as smoking, processed food products, and other inflammatory causes.

At the time, plenty of scientists were skeptical of Keys’s assertions. One such critic was Jacob Yerushalmy, Ph.D., founder of the biostatistics graduate program at the University of California at Berkeley. In a 1957 paper, Yerushalmy pointed out that while data from the six countries Keys examined seemed to support the diet-heart hypothesis, statistics were actually available for 22 countries. And when all 22 were analyzed, the apparent link between fat consumption and heart disease disappeared.

…We’ve spent billions of our tax dollars trying to prove the diet-heart hypothesis. Yet study after study has failed to provide definitive evidence that saturated-fat intake leads to heart disease. The most recent example is the Women’s Health Initiative, the government’s largest and most expensive ($725 million) diet study yet. The results, published last year, show that a diet low in total fat and saturated fat had no impact in reducing heart-disease and stroke rates in some 20,000 women who had adhered to the regimen for an average of 8 years. (MensHealth – Saturated Fat)

In addition to this study, there was a previous study, done by a scientist named Anitschkow, involving a rabbit and cholesterol.  A rabbit, being a herbivore, not an omnivore or carnivore, was fed cholesterol.  This caused inflammation and the rabbit developed plaque in it’s arteries.  Of course it would, a rabbit is not meant to eat anything other than plant based food!  This flawed science created the notion that cholesterol was bad for everyone.

A spin-off from these flawed science ‘studies’ was man-made fats, in the form of vegetable oils and man-made trans-fats, and a turn towards carbohydrates.  Again, carbohydrates are not ‘bad’.  The problem lies with processed foods and using man-made fats in the food products.  We’ve gone away from eating real foods, such as animal fats, coconut, avocados, etc, but switched to what was ‘claimed’ to be ‘healthy’ because it was ‘low in fat’.  These are things such as vegetable spread/margarine instead of butter, low-fat skimmed/semi-skimmed milk instead of whole milk, low-fat non-dairy creamer instead of whole cream, low-fat yogurt laden with sugar and fructose… the list goes on.  Has low-fat actually helped us as society or hurt us?  Looking at the data, low-fat actually causes cholesterol to be created by the body.  Then, we’re given statins to ‘fix’ the issue, which is a horrible thought!  It can be fixed through diet!

Fat is also more satiating.  That means, it keeps you from feeling hungry for longer periods of time.  As a society, we’ve completely done away with listening to our bodies and instead, went with ‘everybody knows’ advice.  We should go back to paying attention to our bodies.  If you’re hungry, eat!  If you’re not hungry, don’t eat!  We don’t have to follow set ‘rules’.  We were all meant to self-regulate our food intake, not allow other people to decide how our own bodies feel.  Only we know the answer to that.  The key is learning to listen again to your own body and question ‘advice’ given that we ignorantly follow.

When I was on the low-fat craze, my cholesterol was the high end of ‘normal’.  After switching to whole foods with a lot of fat, my cholesterol is in perfect range.  I feel my best when I eat high fat/moderate to low carb.  It stresses my body less and also gives me health benefits.  I am living proof that the ‘science’ we’ve been brainwashed to believe is false.  Everyone is different, but at least take the time to question what you’re being told is right.  Saturated fats are not bad, even for people with gallstones.

In regards to coconut flour being ‘unhealthy’ because it contains fat (*gasp*), I’m grain-free due to allergies and, as this entire post mentions, natural fat is not ‘bad’!  Coconut flour is a low carb substitute for the occasional grain recipe.  If you do choose to use coconut flour, be aware it is not a 1:1 substitution.  It absorbs a lot of moisture.  It also doesn’t work in all recipes.

If you’re interested in more about using fats for cooking, look up “paleo”, “primal”, “keto”, or check out the OurTwistedHealth Food Boards on Pinterest.


AuthorityNutrition – Saturated Fat Good Or Bad
ChrisKresser – TheDiet Heart MythCholesterol And Saturated Fat Are Not The Enemy
EmpoweredSustenance – Low Fat Diet Bad
FatHeadMovie – No Bologna Facts
Greatist.com – Saturated Fat Healthy
HealthImpactNews – We Were Wrong About Saturated Fats
Independent.co.uk – The Science Of Saturated Fat A Big Fat Surprise About Nutrition
MarksDailyApple – Saturated Fat Healthy
MensHealth – Saturated Fat
MensJournal – Why Experts Now Think You Should Eat More Fat
Mercola – Debunking The Science Behind Lowering Cholesterol Levels
Mercola – Enjoy Saturated Fats They’re Good For You
Mercola – Saturated Fat Cholesterol
NY Times – What If It’s All Been A Big Fat Lie
NY Times – Why Is The Federal Government Afraid Of Fat
Time – 6 Facts About Saturated Fat That Will Astound You
T-nation – Truth About Saturated Fat
Telegraph.co.uk – Saturated Fat Is Not Bad For Health
WellnessMama – Reverse Tooth Decay


Lies About Salt

Lies About SaltSalts, like natural fats, have gotten a bad reputation.  It’s blamed for things like high blood pressure.  While it may slightly elevate blood pressure momentarily, it is not the cause of chronic high blood pressure.

Salt has sodium, but sodium is not salt.  Think of it like geometry; a square is a rectangle but a rectangle isn’t a square.

We need to look more in-depth with salt.  In the form of natural salt, an unrefined form, there are many trace minerals, different hues, as well as varied size grains, and no additives.

Table salt, including refined sea salt, does not contain trace minerals, is bleached white, uniformed size, and usually contains anti-caking agents like dextrose (a corn or wheat derived sugar).

Natural, unrefined salt can be taken to help your body detoxify.  It also can help your adrenals, if they’re fatigued, by keeping aldosterone in balance, in turn giving you more energy.  Salt also assists with digestion!

Salts (refined and unrefined) do up blood pressure temporarily, but as I said earlier, does not lead to chronic elevated blood pressure.  That’s what sugars do.

When I say sugars, I’m mean in the form of refined carbohydrates that break down into sugars (Not all forms of carbs turn into sugars.  There’s also fiber and starches from carbs.)  This is why the DASH ‘diet’ works temporarily for alievating high blood pressure.  It removes the processed carbohydrates.

It’s also been shown that decreasing salt intake raises blood glucose and insulin resistance.  This means that if you decrease your salt intake you can become diabetic.  Insulin resistance is when your body doesn’t work as efficiently as it should.  Why are people being told to eat less salt?  Is it so they can be treated later for other health issues, caused by the misguided information, which won’t resolve those issues either?

In conclusion, eat real foods, not processed food products.  This includes unrefined salts.


Chris Kresser – Salt Myth – The Dangers of Salt Restriction
Diet Doctor – Blood Pressure
Empowered Sustenance – Adrenal Fatigue Recovery
Mercola – Dangers of Salt Restriction
Mercola – Sugar Blood Pressure
Metabolism Journal – Low-salt diet increases insulin resistance
Natural Family Today – Is Salt Really Bad For You
Natural News – Salt/Sodium Health
NCBI – Low-Salt Diet Increases Insulin Resistance In Healthy Subjects
Oh Lardy – Salt
Open Heart Medical Journal – The Wrong White Crystals
Real Salt – Is High Blood Pressure Linked to Salt or Sugar
Wellness Mama – Is Salt Healthy
Weston A Price – The Salt Of The Earth


Bacon Cheese Soup

Bacon Cheese Soup - Using Monterey Jack

Since nearly all canned soups are full of wheat, sugar, and other processed ingredients, we had to find a way to make our own.  This is a keto (hflc) friendly soup, as well as paleo (if you allow dairy).

Note:  This soup is very filling thanks to the keto aspect.



Bacon Cheese Soup


  • 1/2 Pack of Bacon
  • 4 Tbsp Grass-fed Butter
  • 1 Celery stick, finely diced
  • 5 Cloves of Garlic, minced (or garlic pressed)
  • 1/4 Cup of Starch (potato, tapioca, or arrowroot)
  • 3 Cups of Organic Chicken Stock (bone broth)
  • 4 Cups of Organic Half and Half (or whole milk)
  • 1 lb of shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 Tbsp Tabasco Sauce
  • 1 Tbsp of Coconut Aminos
  • Real salt, Pepper, and Chives to taste


  1. Cut bacon into small sections and place In a large saucepan (approx 4 quart). Allow bacon to cook, but not get crispy.
  2. Once bacon is cooked, add butter, celery, and minced garlic.
  3. Cook until all butter is melted.
  4. Mix in starch and stir well, until thoroughly blended.
  5. Add in chicken stock and bring to a boil for ONE minute.
  6. Turn the heat to low/medium and add half and half, tabasco, aminos, cheese, salt, pepper, and chives.
  7. Allow cheese to fully melt.
  8. Simmer until hot, but do NOT boil after half and half is added.

Cooking Oils

In the health community, we’re told we should use certain oils to cook with over others.  Not many people explain why some oils are better than others.  Instead of taking the ‘everybody knows’ approach such as, processed rapeseed/canola oil is better than real butter? Um, no.

There are many types of cooking oils/fats and their smoke points vary (see image below from BalancedBites).  The smoke point of oils is the temperature when fats begin to breakdown.  Mary Enig, Ph. D., author of Know Your Fats states, “If the collection is liquid at ambient temperature, it’s called an oil; if it is solid, it’s called a fat.” Oils/Fats have a fatty acid composition in the form of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA), Monounsaturated Fats (MUFA), Saturated Fatty Acids (SFA), and other (usually insignificant amounts).Guide to Cooking Fats/Oils
Even though some of these look like great choices for high temperatures based on smoke point, that’s not always the case.  The processing of how these oils are created are a huge factor, as are their stability.

Most of the oils in the infograph, under the red heading, are created by an unnatural chemical process.  The majority seed oils are extracted using a solvent, commonly hexane, after being crushed.  Then they are degummed, neutralized, dewaxed, bleached, filtered, and deodorized.  It’s a very unnatural process.

One of my favorite oils for medium to no heat is cold pressed extra virgin olive oil.  It has a high smoke point, which is good for medium heat (explaining why only medium in next paragraph)… when it’s 100% pure.  Most olive oils are actually cut with lower grade oils (extra source) and reduce their smoke point.  Not only that, but they also can be rancid, which is the taste most Americans are used to.  You should buy olive oil brands that are highly reputable and in a dark glass container.  This makes sure you get a real, non-rancid olive oil.

Rancidity is mostly based on oxidative stability, which shows how resistant the fats are when reacting to oxygen.  Polyunsaturated and monosaturated fats oxidize easier than saturated fats; PUFAs are the most prone to oxidation, followed by MUFAsIn other words, the chemical structure of unsaturated fats are delicate; saturated fats are less delicate and more stable (source).  This is the reason why olive oil should only be used for medium to no heat applications, as olive oil is high MUFAs (see infograph above).

My favorite oil to use for high heat is coconut oil.  As coconut oil is mainly saturated fat, it takes a lot more effort for it to go rancid.

When oils go rancid, they create inflammation in the body.  Inflammation leads to many, many, many health problems (including being easier to sunburn).

Note:  There is varying information about the exact fatty acid makeup of all the oils/fats.  There are all within a few percentages though.


The Gallbladder

Fats and the GallbladderI used to have gallbladder attacks.  I ate a low-fat diet as directed by doctors (yes, plural).  I continued to have attacks, except more frequently even with the low-fat diet.  I was even told I should have it surgically removed!  I was doing everything the doctors said, why should I have it removed?!

What I didn’t know at the time was this was the wrong advice!  The gallbladder excretes bile when there’s fat to digest.  When there’s no fat to digest, the bile gets sludgy and stones can form.  Usually the stones are in the form of cholesterol, but it’s not by eating cholesterol rich foods which cause cholesterol in the body.  Instead, it’s actually NOT eating cholesterol that causes the body to increase its natural production of cholesterol.  The body panics and creates extra in case of emergency such as a famine. (Reference – Weston A. Price Foundation)

Things that contribute to gallstones are low fat diets, moderate to high carbs (even whole grains), and also low stomach acid.  Contrary to popular belief, much like the gallbladder temporary fix, most people have too low of stomach acid (I’ll do a post on it later).


  • In a study of 51 obese people using an extremely low fat low calorie diet (just one gram of fat a day!) the gallbladder was examined by ultrasound before the diet and after one and two months. After one month four of the 51 participants had developed new gallstones. After two months more than one in four (13 people) had new gallstones! This on an almost fat free diet. Three participants needed to have their gallbladder removed during the study.
  • A similar study examined 19 people eating an extremely low fat low calorie diet over 16 weeks. At the ultrasound examination at the end of the study five people (again about one in four) had new gallstones.
  • A third study compared an extremely low fat diet with a diet slightly higher in fat during 3 months. More than one in two (6 of 11 people) in the group eating extremely low fat developed new gallstones. Nobody in the group eating more fat did.

Patients with kidney stones get better advice. They are told to drink a lot of fluid, increasing the production of urine, so that stones do not have time to develop. If you already have kidney stones this advice could give you a painful kidney stone attack initially – but you are still advised to drink a lot.

The reason why we give the opposite advice when it comes to gallstones might be the obsolete fear of fat. If we were afraid of water instead patients with kidney stones might have been advised to avoid drinking to avoid kidney stone attacks. If they did not improve their kidneys would be surgically removed. – (Reference – The Diet Doctor)

If you’ve had your gallbladder removed, you’ll not be able to absorb fat and nutrients as well as if you had it.  That doesn’t mean there’s never a reason to remove your gallbladder, but look for alternatives.

To correct my gallstone issue, I increased my natural fat intake slowly and supported my stomach acid.  By natural fats, I’m speaking of olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, full fat dairy, and saturated animal fats.  Do NOT up your fats by eating burgers, pizzas, doughnuts, french fries, etc.  These are heavy in carbs, trans fats (vegetable and seed oils), and are usually ultra-processed.  It will make things worse.

As a side note: I did have some pain when passing the stones through the ducts, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as the gallbladder attacks blocking the ducts.


Gut Microbes

Do gut microbes control everything?The gut is the brain of your body, including your actual brain.

Gut microbes are the bacteria (flora) in the gut (mainly large intestines).  Your gut microbes, whether you know it or not, control everything. There is a gut-brain connection (gut-brain axis). It controls everything from your mental health (extra resources 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) and mood (extra resource 1)to your overall physical health. I’ll go as far as to say it has a lot to do with weight (extra resource 1) as well.

When babies are born, they get the first dose of their microflora through the birth canal.  Those born by cesarian section (c-section), lose out on the first start of beneficial bacteria.

Babies, regardless of type of birth type(c-section or natural), are given antibiotics directly (as eyedrops) after their born to prevent gonorrhea, which is no longer an issue for most of the western world. This can wipe out the beneficial bacteria received from the birth canal.

To add to our first dose of microflora, we continue to get the bacteria we need through breast milk.  If the baby is fed formula, it misses out on the additional flora.

If you have too many (good or bad) where it spills over excessively into the small intestines, it’s called Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO).  (My SIBO was caused by having fructose malabsorption and LOW stomach acid.)

SIBO has been shown to negatively affect both the structure and function of the small bowel. It may significantly interfere with digestion of food and absorption of nutrients, primarily by damaging the cells lining the small bowel (the mucosa). Additionally, this damage to the small bowel mucosa can lead to leaky gut (when the intestinal barrier becomes permeable, allowing large protein molecules to escape into the bloodstream), which is known to have a number of potential complications including immune reactions that cause food allergies or sensitivities, generalized inflammation, and autoimmune diseases.SIBO – What causes it and why it’s so hard to treat

When you have an bad balance of gut microbes, it’s called dysbiosis.  When your gut controls everything in your body, that’s a big problem.  To add to it, your immune system is 70% in your gut. Your immune system drives your inflammatory response.  Your inflammatory response are proteins called cytokines.  When these proteins get riled up, you have chronic inflammation.  Chronic inflammation can cause weight gain, fatigue, autoimmune conditions, etc.  It all comes back to the gut, even though a lot of people don’t link them together.

I’ve already stated I believe microflora has more to do with weight than ‘calories in vs calories out’.  People who undergo gastric bypass (high risk operation) will lose weight, but not because why most people assume.  It is actually more to do with their gut microbes (extra resources 1, 2).

How do we correct dysbiosis?

I’m still working on that part, as are a lot of people.  Many groups/people recommend taking probiotics.  Probiotics may help, but there are many strains of intestinal bacteria not even found yet.  I think a fecal transplant, as strange as that does sound, is a high probability.

Clostridium difficile (C-Diff) is a life-threatening illness caused by bacteria.  Antibiotics are often prescribed and have a low success rate.  Surgery is also prescribed to remove the infected area.  These routes do not always work and people have died due to them, or their doctors, not wanting to perform a fecal transplant.  It does have risks, but as shown, so do antibiotics.  To loop it back, a woman in England received a fecal transplant for c-diff from her overweight daughter and gained 36 pounds in one year.  This tells me, again, gut microbes have more to do with weight than the flawed ‘calories in vs. calories out’.

I think dysbiosis causes intestinal permeability (leaky gut), which was mentioned in a few of the sources, and both of these are my main obstacle in my quest for better health.  It’s not as easy as cutting out grains and sugars.  I’ve done that.  I drink organic, homemade bone broth.  Nothing has fully recovered me yet, even though I have gotten better, but I believe the key is in the gut.



should you get a tanDid you know that when you are under UV rays, you are causing DNA damage?  Tanning is the body’s defense against UV rays.  When you tan, your body is changing your melanin (skin pigment) in order to protect you.

I used to be told that if I just got a base-tan then I wouldn’t burn.  While being forced to get the base-tan, I kept burning.  Research now shows, “It’s clear that a tan induced by UV exposure plays a mini- mal role in protection against sunburn.”

New research even shows that the damage from the UV rays continue up to four hours after you leave the sun!

The part that isn’t as realized as skin cancer; the more tan you are, the longer you need to be in the sun to get the correct amount of vitamin D.  Fairer skinned people don’t need to be in the sun very long to get enough exposure to produce vitamin D.  If you go on vacation and your goal is to tan, you’re going to need to spend even more time in the sun when you get back home to get the same amount of vitamin D.  If you don’t you’ll become slightly vitamin D deficient.

I used to be ashamed of my pale skin.  Now, I prefer being pale.  Tanned does not always mean ‘healthy glow’.  Appearances don’t show what’s really going on.


Butter or Margarine

When I was in 7th grade, my home eco teacher asked us what the difference was between butter and margarine.  Honestly, I didn’t know at the time.  My family used margarine and called it butter (as sadly a lot of people do).  The teacher ended up saying margarine is healthier because it had fewer calories and less fat.  Seriously.  This is one of the issues with teaching children about health.

People still want to ‘teach’ counting calories and limiting fat (even if it was proven false) instead of teaching about real food and listening to your body.  People are too concerned with eating the ‘wrong’ food, told to us by the media and government, that they turn to chemical laden food products to ‘save them’ from these ‘wrong’ foods.  There are still fights over this.

Compare the labels of margarine and butter…

Margarine Ingredients:  Water, Vegetable Oil Blend (Soybean Oil, Palm Oil, Palm Kernel Oil), Tricalcium Phosphate, Salt, Whey (Milk), Mono and Diglycerides, Lactic Acid, Polyglycerol Esters of Fatty Acids, (Potassium Sorbate, Calcium Disodium EDTA) Used to Protect Quality, Soy Lecithin, Xanthan Gum, Vitamin E Acetate, Vitamin A Palmitate, Beta Carotene (Color), Natural and Artificial Flavor, Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D3)

country crock margarine ingredients

Butter Ingredients: Cultured pasteurized cream

kerrygold butter ingredients

Yes, butter does have more fat and calories, but is also more satiating and is a real food.  You can make butter in your own home by using heavy whipping cream (avoid carrageenan if you go this route).  To make margarine, you need a lab and multiple ingredients, as shown with all the links in the margarine ingredient section.

Trans fats are created by a process that uses hydrogen to turn liquid oils (usually cheap ones – corn and soy, e.g., that are already rancid) into a solid.  Yet the people that live in fear of natural saturated fats because of heart issues are actually causing more damage than they realize.