Tag Archives: heart disease

Sugar; Sweet Poison

by Dave and Jennifer Christensen

What Is Processed Sugar?

Dictionary.com defines process (v.) as to treat or prepare by some particular process, as in manufacturing. Therefore, processed sugar is pure cane sugar that has been treated or prepared by some particular process. My next questions become; what treatment, how is it prepared, in what particular process and where does this all take place?

The first question lead me to a wonderful article on wholevegan.com which offers a complete section on how white and brown sugar are processed. This article brought a whole new understanding to just how lethal processed sugar is for our bodies. In fact there are several chemicals, polyvinyl alcohol and sytrene, that are known to be lethal to the human body. Sodium Hydroxide is used to make soap and is also known to be lethal to the human body.

Sugar Knowledge International SKIL, under the heading Evaporation explains, “the factory can clean up the juice

Sugar Evap Process
Sugar Evaporation Process

quite easily with slaked lime (a relative of chalk).  I then decided to look-up slaked lime and discovered that this is used primarily to make mortars, plasters and cements. The images that are racing through my mind right now are just not pretty; the chemicals that are used in preparing processed sugar are also used to make cement? I can only imagine what my organs and arteries look like after consuming a lifetime of cement making chemicals. This is not a good thought and leaves me wondering if I want to continue in my research or begin walking like Forrest Gump and pray that this will be enough to combat the damage I have already caused by my past sugar consumption.

I referred back to the article on wholevegan.com, wherein the article explains that Bentonite is used in this process to strip the sugar of any nutritious protein. At this point, 25% of the industry uses bone char, which is considered an agent of mad cow disease. The remaining 75% use activated carbon and according to WebMD can cause side effects that include slowing or blockage of the intestinal tract, regurgitation into the lungs, and dehydration.

“A Spoonful of Sugar Helps the Medicine Go Down?”

“A Spoonful Of Sugar,” a 1964 hit movie classic song from the forever popular movie, “Mary Poppins;” Helps The Medicine Go Down?

Mary Poppins
Mary Poppins – Spoonful of Sugar…?

Seven years prior in 1957, Dr. William Coda Martin, regarding processed sugar, used the words “toxic”, and “poison” in definition, as “any substance which applied to the body, ingested or developed within the body which causes or may cause disease.” Dr. Martin explained that the results of the process of refined sugar  leaves no nutritional value where mother nature provides vitamins with natural sugars in fruit and vegetables.  Sugar beets or sugar cane unaltered is  very healthy for the human body.  However, the “empty” or “naked” calories that processed sugar ingests, actually “leaches” the body of essential natural minerals, such as sodium, potassium and magnesium that vegetables and sodium provide.  Lastly, calcium (from the bones) are mobilized and used in chemical transmutation.”

Over time, pyruvic acid is spread throughout your brain and nervous system, along with other “abnormal sugars” in the blood stream. These “toxic metabolites” interfere with the cells respiration, cutting  off oxygen, eventually killing the cells.  This point marks the beginning of degenerative diseases such as cancer, diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease.

In other words, it might be a good idea to substitute natural fruit or honey to your oatmeal rather than a couple spoonfuls of sugar, or drink coffee black or with raw honey as sweetener.

Processed sugar is everywhere; in soft drinks, pastry, juices and breads. Demands on the medical profession thrive from cancers, heart, blood and liver diseases. Obesity is at historically epidemic levels because of the effect of the enormous amounts of processed sugar we consume. To add insult to injury, in 1982, the U.S. government signed legislation allowing a substance that has been since linked to causing cancer; high fructose corn syrup.

The government knew about this core cause of multiple diseases 57 years ago, yet hasn’t acted in the common interest of good health. The FDA needs to prioritize measures of prevention of disease by requiring changes in sugar processing that result in health coming from a healthy food, rather than diseases coming from a once healthy food. When a process is proven to be “toxic” or “poison” to the body and cause disease, by law, needs to be banned; no matter how much money sweetens the pot; public health before profit.

Unaltered sugar is healthy. Processed honey is similarly striped of its nutrients, like that of sugar. Raw honey

Raw Honey
Healing Benefits of Raw Honey (Click for more information)

has nutrients that fight allergies and local raw honey, often found at ‘Farmer’s Markets’, is a healthy alternative to sweeten almost anything. Local honey provides important nutrients essential to your body affected by the climate you live in. Bee pollen has also been known to be a natural way to keep a sex drive healthy. Now that’s sweet!

What Do I Use As A Safe Alternative?

Be aware of your added sugar amounts. Evaluate the amount of processed sugar in everything you eat or snack on. Adjust your diet toward natural sweeteners or raw cane sugar. Substitute raw honey in your coffee, add bee pollen to your vitamin intake if not allergic and eat more fruits and vegetables.  Most importantly, eat healthier.

There have been documented withdrawal symptoms that the medical profession takes as seriously as withdrawals from drugs and alcohol. Some of the withdrawal symptoms from processed sugar include:

The symptoms typically last for up to a week and have even been know to take up to four weeks, depending on your current sugar consumption. I have read articles that suggest a “cold turkey” approach and others that suggest a slow and gradual process. I believe that it ultimately comes down to what is best for you. I personally have to quit “cold turkey” or I will continue to yo-yo, only to find myself in the same spot a year later. I know many people that find a gradual process works best for them. Remember, “you are what you eat” and from what I have read and described above, I do not want to be toxic.


Procrastinating Vegan for Mindful Eating

by Dave Christensen


Everyday more and more people are hearing about a growing movement called Vegan-ism.  To the term, one might think, “Oh, I’ve eaten Vegan before, it’s great.”  Being Vegan is more than merely a diet, it’s a philosophy.  In definition, “ Vegan-ism /ˈviːɡənɪzəm/ is the practice of abstaining from the use of animal products, particularly in diet, as well as following an associated philosophy that rejects the commodity status of sentient animals. A follower of Vegan-ism is known as a vegan.” Wikipedia “Vegan-ism”.

Why Vegan?

Vegan, as a lifestyle, is everyone’s right in America.

BBQ or Vegan?
Country BBQ

For the BBQ loving carnivore, forget about it, simply it isn’t going to happen.  However, if you struggle with heart disease, colon and lung cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes, liver, kidney dysfunctions, hypertension, and obesity, to name a few;  considering a Vegan diet just might be the solution to your bodies dysfunction.

Vegan diet eliminates accumulating animal protein in your bloodstream. Lowering animal protein in your diet will lower your LDL cholesterol.  Michael Greger, in his documentary, Uprooting The Leading Cause Of Death, said “ 75 percent of heart attack victims fell within the recommended targets for LDL cholesterol

Plaque Build-up

levels”, and noted that  “For plaque progression to cease, it appears that the serum total cholesterol needs to be lowered to the 150 mg/dl area….the serum level…of that of the average vegetarian.”

If you have high cholesterol, unless you adopt a vegetarian diet, the only other choice you have is to lower your LDL cholesterol level is with pharmaceuticals. This year new side effects warning label for such pharmaceuticals reads, “side effects: increased in associated memory loss and confusion, an increase of blood sugar levels, as well as new onset diabetes.”  Still, many carnivore vow, “If I can’t live the way I want to live, then I don’t want to live.” Sadly, many won’t.

In the documentary, Vegan: The Silent Healer, William Castelli M.D., Director of Cardiovascular Studies at the Framingham Heart Study, was quoted,

Vegan Recipes
Vegan Recipes

“If Americans adopted a vegetarian diet, the whole thing (heart disease epidemic) would go away.” The choice is yours: Pharmaceuticals with severe side effects? Or a vegetarian diet? You live or die with YOUR decision.

In considering a Vegan diet, be aware that Vegan is a mindset;  a mindfulness of not harming another living being and making them suffer in order for you to eat. Mindful eating results in more healthy eating. Mindful eating considers how the food was raised, processed, and also asks what chemicals are being consumed, and how will they affect one’s health. Mindful eating can have a profound affect on one’s overall health.

Where Do I Start?

Start with being mindful of what you already eat.  The

Mindful Eating
Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food

book, Mindful Eating A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food, by Jan Chozen Bays, MD, explores ones relationship, habits and patterns with food. It also gives six simple guidelines for Mindful Eating. In definition, “Mindfulness is deliberately paying attention, being fully aware of what is happening both inside yourself–in your body, heart, and mind–and outside yourself, in your environment.  Mindfulness is awareness without judgement or criticism.”  (Mindful Eating… p.2)

Even if you’re determined NOT to give up the ceremonial BBQ, mindful eating can be beneficial to your health.  Routine doctor visits and regularly checking your blood pressure, with a well balanced diet and exercise program are daily routines for the health conscious. Just by allowing food to go back to the original purpose of nourishing the body, rather than pacifying an appetite, is mindful eating.

Educating yourself about how your food was processed can affect your appetite. For example, back in the late 70’s, I had a job that delivered to a slaughter house. I had to take bags of linens over slaughtered carcasses to make the delivery. Witnessing the killing (as much as I love beef), I couldn’t eat it for a few seasons after witnessing how it was processed. Slaughterhouse sights, smells, sounds had a profound affect on my appetite.

There are a lot of videos on Vegan vs. Meat Eater. View and take note of the good information.  There are some extremist, however most Vegans are objective, especially those who are short-time Vegan. They remember the difficulty of the mindset adjustment and sometimes people just don’t understand “different.”

Slow Food

Slow Food Logo
Slow Food

In college, I researched “Slow Food” style of eating. “Slow Food is a global, grassroots organisation with supporters in over 150 countries around the world that links the pleasure of food with a commitment to the community and the  environment.”

Slow vs Fast
Slow Food vs. Fast Food

With slow food, in opposition to “fast food”; everything about  how the food is grown; nutrients, and making sure the beef, poultry or pork  is treated humanely; what grain it was fed, prohibiting injection of hormones or steroids. Microwaves or any form of radiation in cooking is prohibited. There is sort of a backwards in time style of cooking and mindset. Food is to be taken seriously, and enjoyed thoroughly.

On the other hand, costs are much more expensive because the feed for cattle, or organic elements of the soil where the vegetables are grown are evaluated. No pesticides, artificial flavors or  additives are allowed. Therefore the cost of a slow food turkey, ham, or roast beef may be much higher than the meat products on sale at your local supermarket. Then again, for about the same cost of eating fast food everyday, one can adopt a “slow food” lifestyle if they are conscious about their diet. (Slow Food)

Most people look favorable on Vegan diet, whereas Vegan-ism is a whole different story. Change in diet doesn’t have to involve a political movement. However, awareness of how your food is grown before it is consumed is beneficial for your health. Healthier diets begin with awareness.

Breaking away from unhealthy eating habits confronts everyone at one time or another.  The internet hosts a vast variety, (including Holistic Thymes) of educational information about how to eat healthier, and why. There are pros and cons to every argument. Ultimately, you are responsible for your health. Changing from a “see-food” diet to “Mindful Eating,” or adopting Vegan-ism, or simply counting calories, will benefit your health.  Common sense, awareness and mindfulness are the keys to healthy eating.  GOD BLESS!