February 2014 Newsletter

Welcome to my February newsletter.  I hope you enjoy the articles and recipe.   Hopefully you’ll decide to read it but if not, just unsubscribe below.  This month: 

  • Reduce your risk of Crohn’s
  • Rosacea relief
  • The WHO cancer report: curb carbs – & your risk
  • Try my ultra-moist chocolate cake

Eating fruit reduces your risk of inflammatory bowel disease

Crohn’s is a form of of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).  A new study by Massachusets General Hospital and Harvard Medical School followed 170,776 women (nurses) over 26 years.  The women reporting the highest intake of fibre in the diet had 40% risk reduction of IBD.  The fibre from fruits, rather than that from other foods like grains or legumes (beans & pulses) had the strongest protective effect.  Your long-term diet has a massive effect on not just your present but your future health.  Women with highest fibre intake had 40% reduction in Crohn’s disease.   In my opinion, you will get the best results by eating 3 servings a day of fruit that are high in nutrients and low in sugars.  Berries, plums, apples and pears, organic if possible, are a winner. Read the abstract

Rosacea relief

Rosacea is a distressing skin condition that starts with incidents of facial flushing.  It can progress to spots, redness and even skin thickening, especially around the nose.  A cream based on a naturally-occurring sulphur compound can now help reduce the symptoms while you work on the underlying causes.   A double-blind placebo controlled study showed that using a topical MSM based skin cream for one month resulted in improvement in redness, papules, itching, hydration and skin colour.  The study team thinks the positive effects could stem from the ability of the skin cream to reduce levels of chemicals in the skin that cause flushing and inflammation. MSM (methylsulphonylmethane) is a sulphur compound.  Sulphur is important for your liver and good liver function is important for smooth, clear skin.  That’s just one of the reasons why eating dark green leafy vegetables most days (and onions, leeks and organic eggs often) is so good for your health.   The cream also contained milk thistle extract (silymarin), also known for its beneficial effects on your liver.  Your liver is an important key to clear, healthy skin.  Read the abstract

Reduce your carbs, and your cancer risk

As I listened to the WHO report last week I was pleased to hear that “sugar” is finally being acknowledged as a leading factor in cancer.  By sugar, scientists and health researchers don’t just mean the white stuff, but very high carbohydrate foods.  A carbohydrate (“acrb” for short) is basically a food that consists of chains of sugars linked together.   Fruit can be high carb because contains the sugars fructose or glucose, and fruit juice contains proportionately even more of these sugars .  Grains (especially white grains), root vegetables and of course sugar, dried fruit, honey, and syrups are also high in sugars.  Milk is also a high carb food because its so rich in the sugar lactose.

Researchers from the University of Wurzburg Hospital analysed 162 studies of sugar (high carb foods) and whether reducing it could stop malignant tumours in their tracks.  They found that adopting a low carbohydrate ketogenic style diet slows cancer progression.  This is certainly the case for my friend Patricia, a nutritionist, who has achieved significant reduction in her (untreatable) malignant eye tumour by following a ketogenic (low carb) diet.  Cancer cells need a LOT of glucose (or fructose) in order to thrive and progress.  This was discovered in the 1927 by a doctor who found that diabetic people with cancer stopped excreting sugar (glucose) in their urine.  diabetics normally pass a lot of glucose in their urine.  This gave rise to further research showing that cancer cells need fructose or glucose (sugars) in order to establish and grow.  The truth is that as humans we’re just not set up for our current high carb diet.  Our diet of mostly grains, milk, sugar, fruit juices or smoothies, processed foods or drinks sweetened with high fructose corn syrup provides a fertile growth medium for abnormal cells to grow, divide and spread.  If you are in good health and want to move towards a diet that’s unfriendly to cancer cells, the best way is to phase out refined foods in favour of natural wholefoods.  Then you could start increasing high quality vegetables, good fats, and reducing the amount of natural sugars in your diet and eat moderate amounts of high quality protein such as fish and chicken.  Read the study

Ultra-moist (and ultra-easy) chocolate cake

This is a chocolate cake that I’d call a crowd-pleaser.  It’s really easy and even healthy enough to eat for breakfast.  Yesterday it vanished within half an hour when I brought it in to work.  It’s really moist and rich though it contains no oil or butter.   Unless you know, you could never tell it was made using beans.  Yes, beans!  If you can, use organic ingredients, especially the eggs and the orange zest. The cooled cake stays really moist for at least 2 days if you store it in an airtight container.  Click here to get to my recipe blog and view the recipe.   Click here to view the recipe

Wishing you the best of health
Anna Collins Nutrition