Cure hypothyroidism with raw food diet, plus Thyroid Summit info (it’s free!)


Christie Marie had enough of her sleepless nights, lack of energy and taking a variety of medications to help her hypothyroidism. For 10 years she dealt with the chemical imbalances in her body brought on by her underactive thyroid, constantly battling the frustrating on-again-off-again cycle in which her thyroid levels would raise, only to return to their low levels (1). It was a yo-yo lifestyle that left her upset and confused.

However, it came to an end once she changed her diet. Specifically, she turned to raw foods and hasn’t looked back.

How a raw food diet healed woman’s hypothyroidism

She stopped taking medications and even supplements like B12 and went on a raw food diet. Marie explains that the experience has changed her life since she’s been following the 80-10-10 raw food diet, which means that 80 percent of her daily food consumption is from fruits and veggies and the remaining percentages are a balance of protein and healthy fats (2).

“I’m not on any medication anymore, I’m not taking any pills and I feel really, really good,” she says. “80-10-10 . . . it’s nutrients for every cell and every organ in your body; it’s exactly what you need.” Check out the video below to hear her story.

How to Heal Hypothyroidism Naturally with Raw Food

Free online Thyroid Summit to shed new light on condition

Interested in learning even more? Be sure to register for the free online Worldwide Thyroid Summit, which runs from June 2 – 9, 2014 and provides tons of new information about the condition, including why conventional treatment may not be best for you, as well as a closer look at symptoms, management and taking back control of your life.

According to The Mayo Clinic, an underactive thyroid can lead to health complications including infertility, obesity and even heart disease (3). Typically, medical professionals assess blood tests to review changing thyroid levels and make recommendations accordingly. Fortunately for Marie, she no longer has to deal with excessive doctor visits since she healed her hypothyroidism with raw foods!

There’s one hormone that touches every single cell in your body: the thyroid hormone. Which means, if your thyroid is malfunctioning you could feel fatigued, anxious, cold, moody, depressed, or you could have hair loss, obesity or dry skin.

Unfortunately, conventional medicine has a very difficult time connecting any of these symptoms (and many more) with a thyroid disorder – it’s on you to do your homework.

Fortunately, 32 world-renowned experts have gathered in one place.

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Healthy banned foods: could your healthy habits be illegal?

Many laws make sense. Things like not drinking and driving, wearing seat belts or helmets and not abusing people or animals are all wise moves making legal strides. Smart stuff.

Then there are the more ridiculous things in life that have laws behind them . . . things like certain healthy banned foods. Yes indeed, some healthy foods are actually banned in areas. It’s so bizarre, it’s as if this could all be some kind of party game or new TV show called, “Laws Gone Wild.” Guess the state, or food or just add your own silly reason and tah-dah . . . you’ve created a new law that’ll give everyone a case of giggles.

But the sad part is, it is true that certain healthy foods are banned. In keeping up with the spirit of Raw and Natural Health, we found healthy foods, that while good to eat, may be illegal depending on the circumstance.

Healthy banned foods

In Beech Grove, Indiana, don’t you dare eat watermelon in parks. It’s illegal to eat them due to rinds that were poking through garbage bags and making a general mess out of the area (1). Instead, we suggest blending that rind up in a watermelon rind smoothie and sipping it while at the park. Problem solved!

Live in California? Better think twice about carrying your avocado cabbage wrap down the streets of Riverside between the hours of 11:00 am and 1:00 PM. It’s illegal to carry your lunch down the street there (2).

Peanuts are a biggie. You can’t eat them in church in Boston, MA and in Greene, NY peanut-eating gets complicated. There, it’s illegal to eat peanuts and walk backwards down the street while a concert is playing (2). First of all, aren’t these just common-sense actions? Are there people who’d really break out the peanut trail mix in the pew? And what are the odds that peanut consumption, backwards walking and a concert would all happen simultaneously? Is it me, or is this just, well, nuts?

In any event, according to some, peanuts are really healthy nuts, provided they’re enjoyed raw. Purdue University’s Department of Food and Nutrition says peanuts are a great way to reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors and The World’s Healthiest Food’s web site explains that they’re rich in vitamins and minerals (3). Some people are concerned of mold in peanuts, regardless of whether the nuts are raw and/or organic.

So there you have it. Eat healthy, but beware of the places you choose to get your heart-healthy, immune-boosting benefits. Who knew?

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Can diet affect menopause symptoms?

Menopause is a naturally-occurring phase that typically begins in women between the ages of 45-60. It is a monster lying in wait, lurking, stealing our femininity right out from under us… or so conventional medical wisdom would have us believe.

Our bodies have been transitioning naturally without much in the way of “intervention” since the beginning of time. So does it have to be a life-altering, sometimes debilitating transition?

It just might be that Menopause is one of the many natural phenomena within our bodies that the pervasive modern diet and hurried lifestyles have morphed into something to be battled with medicine. There is no doubt that the influx of garbage and toxins via food, water and air has transformed our bodies in such a way that menopause is now deemed a mood-altering, mind-invading beast; our bodies have weakened and been thrown almost into a state of disrepair… almost!

Regardless of which toxic behaviours and lifestyles are causing the destructive reactions within our bodies, something can still be done to stave off the negative “symptoms.”

Little or no negative side effects from Menopause

Do a basic Internet search and you will be inundated with real-life testimonials from women who have experienced little to no dreadful effects typically associated with Menopause today. These are the women who adopted the healthier, raw lifestyle long before their bodies began “the change.”

The good news is that adopting a raw food diet at any stage in life will bring our bodies in tune with their natural state, and living naturally is our best chance at avoiding menopausal polarity and general malaise. While a strict raw food diet may not be for everyone, introducing any amount of raw foods into your everyday diet can leave you with fewer complaints as you navigate through this natural event.

To better facilitate the hormonal fluctuation associated with Menopause, try incorporating raw foods that contain phytoestrogen (a plant-derived estrogen-mimicking element) and boron (a natural bone-building mineral).

Can diet affect menopause symptoms?

Eating foods that carry a high amount of both of these will alleviate a lot of the negative symptoms many women experience; and they include:

There are also some herbs you can take to help lessen negative menopausal symptoms and can easily be stirred into teas via tincture. These include:

  • Black cohosh
  • Ginseng
  • Chaste tree berry
  • Red raspberry leaf
  • Red clover

Long before Big Pharma came along with diagnosis and prescriptions, women not only managed, but thrived during their menopausal journey. We must remember that Menopause does not have to carry the stigma it has been given; it can be a pain-free experience if met with a healthy lifestyle and natural diet.

Image source:

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Thyroid problems and obesity: when is it real, and when is it an excuse?

Shane Ellison of The People’s Chemist may raise some eyebrows with his statements about how obese people need to stop using the “thyroid problem” as an excuse for their excess weight. In a video shot while taking his child to school, he mentions how while driving, the bad eating habits of people are frequently observed.

Natural Thyroid Cure – Thyroid or DONUT Problem?

He explains how many people are often ” . . . shoving donuts down their throats for breakfast and washing it down as fast as they can with soda.” These, he says, are typically the same people who contact him insisting that their weight problems are related to thyroid issues, who then go on to request thyroid medication.

He insists such people don’t have a thyroid problem, but instead have a “donut problem,” lacing his video with some pretty harsh words to describe the kind of hall of fame such individuals belong in. You’ll see in the video. Belittling as some of his comments are, his main goal is to convey that people may be in more control of their thyroid health than they realize. “Habits create and eradicate obesity, not drugs,” Ellison says. “You can bring your thyroid back to life with your habits, not drugs.”

The thyroid-weight gain connection

At Raw and Natural Health, we’ve seen time and again how eating healthy, organic foods have the power to naturally heal and maintain a healthy body. From blood pressure-reducing juices to heart-healthy recipes, these are the habits that can help control weight and help improve thyroid conditions.

Of course, there is a correlation between thyroid problems and obesity. Body composition and thyroid hormones are indeed linked since thyroid hormones play a role in regulating weight including metabolic function, fat oxidation and food intake (1). Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) in particular is linked to weight gain.

We have to agree with Ellison, minus the semi holier-than-thou attitude and rude(ish) tone. That aside, he makes the point that there’s a difference between a legitimate ill-functioning thyroid and weight gain and people who eat pizza and cereals daily only to blame their obesity on the “my darn thyroid” excuse.

Register now for the free online Thyroid Summit

Want to learn more about taking control of your thyroid condition? Register for the free online Worldwide Thyroid Summit, which runs from June 2 – 9, 2014 and provides tons of new information about the condition, including why conventional treatment may not be best for you, as well as a closer look at symptoms and management. It’s led by Suzy Cohen, America’s Pharmacist, and by Dr. David Brownstein, who will share information that’ll put you on the fast track to better thyroid health. How great is that?

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Yucca root: the health benefits of this odd-looking root vegetable

Cliche as it is, we’re going to say it: it’s what’s on the inside that counts. We’ve been down this road before when I wrote about the Ugli fruit, talking about the lumpy-looking hybridized food and its health benefits.

Many of our recipes include another not so pretty food, the avocado. And Jennifer even took a semi-humorous look at weird looking fruits and veggies when she wrote about how shopping for healthy foods can be a lot like dating, drawing parallels between the two (that unusual-looking something that makes you hesitate at first may turn out to be the best thing ever!).

Well, we’re at it again.

This time, a long, slightly twisted root vegetable with a starchy, nutty flavor caught my eye. It’s Yucca root, also known as Cassava, and it’s the third most important calorie source in the tropics, after rice and corn (1).

Yucca root looks a bit like a brown walking stick, but it fits in shopping baskets, so it’s more like a walking stick a small child would use while perusing the aisles of Toys R Us (not realistic, I know), rather than one for grown adults hiking the Appalachian Trail. It curves in some spots and is straight in others, and in most cases, their height and thickness varies. Either way, it stands out from symmetrical apples and perfect plums, and has health benefits worth exploring.

The health benefits of yucca root

First of all, it’s a pale food. Now before you shun it, consider what Keith wrote in his post about white vegetables. He says, ” . . . pale vegetables are rich in fiber, potassium and magnesium, and often they are much more affordable than there colorful cousins.” He urges us not to overlook pale foods just because they’re not part of that rainbow colored goodness that all healthy people enjoy. Cauliflower, fennel, parsnips (and now we’ll add yucca root to the list) . . . tasty and healthy!

As for yucca root, it’s a good source of potassium, containing 558 milligrams of it in one cup (2). Potassium is important to keep electrolyte levels balanced in our body, which plays a huge role in proper heart function.

It’s also loaded with vitamin C, with one cup providing more than half the DI (daily intake) for women and 47 percent DI for men (2). Vitamin C is important when it comes to fighting free radicals, which means consumption of it can boost cell, skin, and heart health and more. It’s vital component to staying as disease-free as possible.

Intrigued? Try it! I even found a recipe on how to make roasted yucca fries that uses virgin olive oil (always choose organic) and encourages sprinkling anything from fresh herbs to a cinnamon/cayenne combo on top. Sounds delish!

How to Cook Yucca Root Fries

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Is eating black pepper and curcumin together better for health?

Recently, we received a friendly comment –always welcome, hint hint 🙂 concerning our turmeric smoothie recipe. Under the username, “Tine,” a comment was left saying, “If you add a little black pepper it boosts the health benefits of turmeric more than ten-fold…”

Indeed, there’s some truth to this and we wanted to share the details with Raw and Natural Health readers.

The benefits of combining black pepper and curcumin

Here’s the deal: turmeric’s healthful substance is curcumin. While amazing for our health, it’s apparently not the best at absorption (bioavailability), but black pepper contains piperine, an absorption superstar (1). When used together, it’s like a win-win relationship happening in the body where the piperine essentially helps boost absorption of curcumin in our system so it stays in our cells longer.

In fact, one study concluded that when curcumin was taken with 20 mg of piperine, absorption of curcumin increased a whopping 2000%. That extra “0” isn’t a typo, either!

As an added bonus, pepper is known to decrease intestinal gas, stimulate stubborn fat cells and induce slight amounts of sweating (good to aid in weight loss) and is high in manganese (2).

This isn’t to say that having the turmeric without pepper in smoothies and other foods has rendered it ineffective all along, because it still remains a great way to fight inflammation and cancer cells (3). It’s great stuff, whether you enjoy it with black pepper, coconut oil or fruit (or anything else you prefer).

So, as with all foods and combinations of them: as long as you’re getting the nutrients that work best for you to keep you happy and healthy, keep at it!

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The diabetes summit & how raw foods can cure type 2 diabetes

Obviously, we’re big on a raw foods lifestyle here at Raw and Natural Health. It’s no secret that whole, organic foods not only taste great, but do wonders to help our body. We love that a green juice loaded with spinach can help reduce blood pressure and enjoy knowing that foods like raw oat chewies help lower cholesterol and lowers the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

As far as diabetes is concerned, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that Type 2 accounts for approximately 90 to 95 percent of all diagnosed cases (1). Hundreds of billions of dollars (yep, that’s with a capital “B”) are incurred in medical expenses and lost job productivity. Aside from the body’s inability to properly manage insulin, the health complications that can develop with this type of diabetes include everything from heart disease and stroke to neurological problems and even leg amputation.

Reversing Diabetes World Summit

All of this and more is addressed at the comprehensive Reversing Diabetes World Summit, which is taking place now through May 16, 2014. It gets better: it’s online so you can participate from the comfort of your home while sitting in jammies if you’d like and . . . it’s free! Register here to get the latest information about diabetes management, including eating right, managing stress and as their site says, how to ” . . . beat the diabetes epidemic once and for all.” (2)

The story of one woman who cured her Type 2 diabetes with raw foods

Now, you may ask: can someone really beat diabetes? You bet! Let’s take a look at one woman who is a believer that a raw food diet can cure type 2 diabetes.

Diagnosed as a Type 2 diabetic, Bibi Zambrano of Houston, TX, explains how she was always tired, frequently sick and easily injured. She was on diabetes medication for three years (3). The fact that she felt she was missing out on seeing her young daughter’s grow up only compounded the problem. Then, she decided to try a raw food diet and her life changed dramatically.

She admits that it took some getting used to, but the fact that within two weeks her diabetes was “completely gone” far outweighs any challenges in the beginning. That’s right . . . completely gone. Nada. Zip. Zambrano, a raw food vegan, says that her blood tests came back “perfectly normal” and she’s off her diabetes meds.

Listen to the video below to hear Zambrano tell her incredible story. In it, she shares glimpses of what she eats in a day, including mango/kale smoothies, salad dressings made with mango and tomato and plenty of vegetables in salads. These days, she says she’s also in a better spot mentally adding that she has increased mental clarity and better social connections.

“Overcame Type 2 Diabetes in 2 Weeks on a High Fruit Raw Diet

“I wouldn’t change it for anything,” she says.

Between the vast amount of information to be learned at the Diabetes Summit and stories like Zambrano’s, we’re happy about the positive difference that comes from making smart, nutritious food choices.

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Bored of the same routine? Then massage your kale!

Kale has tons of nutrients from fiber and folate to calcium and carotenoids. As such, it’s heralded as a great way to combat cancer, repair cells, detoxify the body and boost heart health.

However, not everyone is a fan of kale’s bitter taste and rough texture.

The solution?

Massage your kale.

Admittedly, massaging your kale sounds strange, something that giggling pubescent children might craft into a joke or wording that adults might toss about in the form of subtle sarcasm. At the very least, the notion of massaging your kale seems somewhat absurd. It’s a bit of a fancy act to provide a vegetable, don’t you think?

Why massage kale?

All kidding aside, massaging kale is a great way to change both its taste and texture without compromising its nutrients.

What you’ll end up with is far different than what you bought at the market. After massaging your kale, it’ll taste sweeter and feel smooth when chewing, plus your body won’t have to work as hard to digest the healthy, cruciferous green.

Without getting deep into our Science 101 days of yesteryear, the bottom line is that all the massaging creates a friction that breaks down kale’s cellulose, which is responsible for it’s tough texture. That’s why it becomes silkier and easier to eat.

How to massage your kale

Simply remove the fibrous stems, chop the leaves into small pieces, add a virgin olive oil/salt/organic lemon juice mixture to the leaves (to taste), then rub bunches of leaves against each other for five minutes. Note: some people prefer using ACV (Apple Cider Vinegar) instead of lemon juice or olive oil and others may massage kale as is, without any oil or juices. Either way will work; the point is to tenderize the leaves and massaging does the trick.

Get into it. Knead it like dough, rub the leaves together vigorously and squeeze them in your hands until the leaves are tight in your fists. Telltale signs that your kale is on its way to its new, sweeter flavor and softer texture will be its appearance.

The leaves will shrink to about half their original size, darken and become silkier, indicators that the process is working. To learn more, watch this short video about how to massage kale and why it works.

Super Quick Video Tips: Massage Raw Kale for Tender Greens

The process is also a great non-heating option; it’s been said that massaging kale changes the vegetable in a way similar to how the heating process would.

So how about it? If you haven’t been massaging your kale, why not give it a try? If anything, you’ll enjoy a new flavor and texture experience . . . and maybe even some silly jokes about what you did today along the way.

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The surprising health benefits of raisins

April 30 is National Raisin Day! Who knew?

There’s something about rooting for the underdog and in our opinion, the raisin falls in that category. After all, don’t most of us reach for an apple or some carrots before popping a handful of raisins? When we’re invited over someone’s home for a meal, it’s not common that bowls of raisins grace the countertops. So it goes. Sigh. The life of a poor little raisin. But we’re here to change that!

Raisins have tons of health benefits that’ll make you want to start eating more of them.

The health benefits of raisins

Interestingly, raisins may be able to fight cavities. Wait, they’re sticky and sweet (Def Leppard 1980s reference, but we digress) and have typically been considered a food to avoid since they may cause cavities. But fight them? It’s been found that raisins have beneficial polyphenols and flavonoids that may ward off oral bacteria that leads to cavities.

Beverly Hills, CA dentist Shawn Frawley, says “. . . we must consider whether the cavity-fighting properties of the phenolics outweigh the cavity-causing properties of the sugar.” However, studies have shown that the content of it in raisins is not as cavity-causing as standard table sugar.

Still, we’re not saying to chew on raisins in lieu of flossing, but just knowing that they’re loaded with great compounds is wonderful. If they’re helping our teeth, as it looks like they might, all the better. For more about their role in oral health, check out this article.

Speaking of sugar, raisins are high in natural sugars, making them an ideal snack for when you’re in need of an energy boost. They’re especially beneficial after an intense workout. Does cleaning the house count? : )

Another surprise is that raisins are a good source of iron, which is typically not the case for a plant-based food. Our bodies need iron so cells get proper amounts of oxygen. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency and the leading cause of anemia in the United States.” Eat up!

They may even have something to do with boosting our libido. Raisins contain the amino acid Arginine, which is known to help with erectile dysfunction and to increase sperm count. We think this cycle could be interesting. . . eat them for the energy boost as we mentioned above. . . which leads to something else (ahem), which leads to needing that energy boost all over again : ) Well, are we complaining? Read about this and many of the other benefits of raisins here.

Finally, the Journal of Food Science found that daily consumption of raisins is connected with lowered blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

So celebrate National Raisin Day today and every day by incorporating more of them in your diet. They’re great as a snack, as a topping in soaked oatmeal/muesli recipes and in salads!

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Is black garlic good for your health?

Black foods typically conjure up images of spoiled items and food colors you’d not willingly eat, right? Well, once you hear about the benefits of black garlic, that thought might change.

What is black garlic?

Black garlic is made without additives or preservatives in a humidity-controlled environment. Translation: the bulb remains in temps that reach upwards of 170 degrees F for 30 days.

Ok, so for those among us who avoid the heat process when it comes to foods they eat, ingesting them at 118 degrees or lower, this post might not sit well with you. But for those who don’t mind heating their foods and still maintain a healthy dietary lifestyle (heated foods or not), you’ll enjoy this information.

To continue the process, the bulb is then oxidized for about 45 days in a clean area. It’s this oxidation that turns the fresh garlic bulbs black. Now, rather than crinkle your nose at the notion, consider that it has a sweet taste that’s something in between balsamic vinegar, molasses and prunes. I know, not your everyday combination, but apparently it’s very good and also has a pleasant, chewy texture to boot.

Is black garlic good for your health?

Yes, it’s made in a heated environment. But it’s clean. And it’s flavorful. And . . . the huge upside of black garlic over fresh garlic is (drum roll please) that it has double the antioxidants. As such, it’s often referred to as a “super garlic” because of its ability to fight harmful free radicals in our body.

Furthermore, black garlic’s concentration of S-Allylcysteine, which is associated with lowering cholesterol and fighting cancers, is greater in black garlic than fresh. For more about the benefits of black garlic, check out this article.

An extra bonus? Black garlic is void of the offensive odor that conventional garlic carries. Big date or important meeting coming up? Go ahead . . . chow down on (black) garlic without a care in the world!

Have you had black garlic? What are your thoughts?

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