One of the most wonderful things about the nutrition school I attended is that they offer professional enrichment opportunities even after students graduate. And this school is very well-connected. That means amazing opportunities for me to continue learning directly from the famous doctors, physicians, activists, authors, and nutrition gurus and bring their cutting-edge information right back to you.
This past weekend, I attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition fall conference in NYC and was so delighted to be lectured by Dr. Mark Hyman (who often specializes in thyroid and autoimmune disease), Deepak Chopra (formerly an endocrinologist, now a mind-body guru), Dr. Joel Fuhrman (a vegetable, anti-cancer advocate), Joe Cross (of the film Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead), Kathy Freston (author and vegan advocate), Dr. Dukan (of the famous Dukan Diet), and my personal favorite — food science heroine and founder of the Weston A Price Foundation, Sally Fallon.
All of this information will be healthy for you to incorporate into your life. But, I have specifically highlighted things that will be directly beneficial to your thyroid and autoimmunity, in green.
Here are the highlights from the weekend.
This man is a Functional Medicine rock star. He helps his patients get to the root of why the illness is happening. He has helped many people heal their autoimmune disease, and has a penchant for nutritional approaches that easing thyroid disease.
Some of my favorite quotes of his:
- We have a social disease: chronic disease and obesity
- We need a social cure [for health problems]
- You [holistic health counselors/coaches] are the community health workers of the future
Dr. Joel Fuhrman
The focus of his lecture was immunity and cancer. Specifically, those eating a “Standard American Diet” will have very low (scary low!) immunity and be extremely susceptible to cancer and infectious diseases.What does a Standard American Diet look like? Hot dogs, grocery store bread, non-organic fruits and vegetables, ketchup with high fructose corn syrup, Doritos, soda, ranch dressing, grilled cheese sandwiches, conventional yogurt and cheese, etc. etc.
His main points:
- Greens are healing and inhibit cancer growth and the AIDS virus
- We are dependent upon green vegetables for our well-being
- Mycosinase and glucosinolates = anti-cancer compounds in greens. But these compounds must be liberated before being cooked: either by chewing the food with healthy oral flora/bacteria, or by blending in a blender before cooking. ["Chew"/agitate greens before you cook them]
- The average person needs 500 mg of greens daily (several cups)
- Lutein or Alpha carotene are both blood markers for greens intake
- Mushrooms are an integral part of the immune system
- Antigen-binding lectins in mushrooms = inhibit growth of blood cells in (fat or cancer) tissue; ie: help with weight regulation
- Aromatase inhibitors in mushrooms = reduce estrogen levels in the body
Some of my favorite quotes of his:
- The body is self-healing.
- All S.A.D. [Standard American Diet] -eaters are immune depressed
This woman is a food science genius and a true role model. I probably also like her and her message (Weston A Price Foundation) because as she describes it, “It’s the most subversive nutrition literature out there.” Ohhh yeah.
Sally spoke on the USDA guidelines for eating and how they are psuedo-science, deficient in many essential nutrients, and how this leads to major health problems.
Her main points:
- Choline, as found in eggs, protects against EMFs (Electro Magnetic Frequencies; the bad electronic pollution that pulls down the thyroid and harms the brain)
- People feel guilty for eating fats because fats have been vilified. But fats are essential to health! This guilt can lead to obesity and eating disorders.
- The Standard American Diet is heavy on bad fats (trans fats, vegetable oils) and otherwise very lean/low-fat
- Liquid industrial oils (canola, soy, etc.) produce uncontrolled reactions within the body — including autoimmunity
- Dietary cholesterol has little-to-no impact on blood cholesterol
- Cholesterol is the mother of all hormones; we need to be eating lots of health sources of cholesterol for normal hormonal health.
- Protein depletes vitamin A in the body. So we need to eat vitamin A with our proteins to supplement.
- Protein always comes with fats, so eat the fat.
- The four food groups:
- 1). Animal foods from pastured, wild-caught or grass-fed animals (including bone broths, cheese, meat, and fish)
- 2). Grains, legumes, and nuts that have been prepared properly (soaked, sprouted, fermented, etc.)
- 3). Fruit and vegetables that are either raw, cooked, or lacto-fermented (ie: probiotic)
- 4). Animal fats and healthy vegetable fats, including but not limited to lard, tallow, cod liver oil, coconut oil, palm oil
Some of my favorite quotes of hers:
- Aristocracy of the healthy = the idea that people who care for their bodies and diet will be more happy and successful than those who do not
- There is a shortage of people in the jobs that require brain power. This is because due to poor diet, many people suffer concentration, emotional, and clear thinking issues
- We cannot have a grocery store system and at the same time have a healthy diet. In other words, make it yourself if you want to be healthy!
So what did you learn here? What is most interesting to you? Which of these speakers resonate with you?