Category: Our Blog

Toothpaste Naturally

Recently I had a good reason to change my toothpaste habits. Keith was away over the weekend and he took the toothpaste with him! I kept meaning to go out to get more but I just never made it. So the end of the day came,–time for me to brush my teeth. And there was no toothpaste in the house! Emergency? Perhaps. Opportunity? Definitely!

I had been using a natural toothpaste – Weleda Sea Salt. I really like that toothpaste, but it is expensive. I also like the Eco-Dent tooth powder (especially the fennel flavor!). I searched through the cabinets and there was none to be found. Then I remembered my reading about natural approaches to oral hygeine. It was time to get creative.

In my head, I ran down the list of items I had in the house I might be able to use for a “toothpaste”:

Baking Soda (too blech)

Essential Oils (maybe-too strong to use by themselves though)

Hydrogen Peroxide (too strong by itself, and should not be used with silver fillings)

Sea Salt (a definite possibility, although a bit too salty)

Various herbal liquids (soothing and healing, but not terribly cleansing)

Apple Cider Vinegar (some people gargle with it)

Phosfood Liquid (a Standard Process supplement – will take off tartar really well but should only be used VERY infrequently)

Coconut Oil (hmmm, couldn’t think of a downside here)

I finally settled on coconut oil to to brush with. It’s anti-microbial, soothing, healing, and goopy enough to take off the residue of the day (gross!). Plus you can eat it! So it’s completely safe. And I had it on my kitchen counter. So without having to mix anything together or do anything fussy, I scooped a a few tablespoons into a little dish and took it upstairs to the sink. Then I put a fava-bean-sized amount on my toothbrush and brushed away. It felt great! My teeth felt smooth and it actually freshened my mouth! I imagine I could have easily added a couple of drops of peppermint oil. I could have mixed a few ingredients together from the above list to be creative. But I am satisfied with straight coconut oil. Plus, it saved me a trip to the health food store.

I also like oil pulling, and I recommend it to my clients. You can read more about this interesting oral hygeine technique here.

I hope you learned a little bit about how you can take care of your mouth…naturally!

Sunday Breakfast

Sunday breakfast is my favorite breakfast of the week 🙂 On Sunday, I love to sleep in (if I can) and then have a leisurely  breakfast with my husband. In contrast to weekday breakfasts, I go all-out on Sunday. My typical rule is not to eat carbs for breakfast or lunch, because I noticed I have better energy throughout the day. But the “no-carb” breakfast rule is not in force on Sunday! My other rule is no sugar, and I do not break that, except every once in a great while, and not at breakfast. So on Sundays Keith and I love to cook breakfast together and enjoy spending some unhurried time with each other. It’s always a sad moment when 2 pm rolls around on a Sunday, which means the (short) weekend is almost over and it’s time to gear up for the coming week!

Because Sunday morning breakfast has become a bit of a ritual in my house, I wanted to share some of my favorite “breakfast treats”. I hope you enjoy!

Paleo Apple Fritters – Elana’s Pantry

Low Carb Pork Rind Pancakes – Mr. Breakfast      Yes….I know. Pork rinds! It’s what’s for breakfast!

Breakfast Frittata – The Paleo Mom

AIP Turkey Breakfast Sausage – Autoimmune Wellness (although I will probably use pastured pork for now, as we are both off poultry – long story)

Gluten Free French Toast – Paleogrubs (But I used Amaranth Gluten Free Bakery’s Sunflower and Honey Bread – o.m.g)

So I hope you try some of these recipes, which I have enjoyed myself very much.

Intro to Drugless Healing – What Put Chiropractic On the Map

What put chiropractic on the map? Chiropractic is an interesting subject, and also a relatively new healing method. There is nothing more interesting to me than drugless healing. Did you know that Chiropractic is the largest drugless healing method in the world?

Many people go to chiropractors, but many others still have not experienced this method of healing. In this blog post I would like to discuss a little bit about the history of chiropractic. How did it become so successful and well-known?

The first chiropractic patient was cured of his deafness in 1895 by the first chiropractor, D.D. Palmer. You can read his story here.

After that Dr. Palmer began to train others, and the chiropractic method began to spread. People began to report amazing recoveries and results.

But what really put chiropractic on the map is its incredible successc treating influenza patients during the Epidemic of 1918. Take a look at chiropractic’s great statistics helping influenza patients in this link.

Chiropractic remains one of the safest, most effective methods of health care. And chiropractic is not just for neck and back pain. Did you know, we have seen patients get well from infertility, bladder infections, carpal tunnel, insomnia, and have even stopped smoking, just from getting adjusted?

And here is my food journal for the last couple of days:

Monday 1/31/17

8:30 AM: 2 cups of coffee with heavy cream, 2 pieces of meatloaf, celery w/hummus (4)

12:30 PM: more meatloaf with Oasis ketchup (4)

3 PM: SP berry bar (20)

6:30 PM: slice of sourdough cinnamon raisin break with butter (Malinda brought it for me, I couldn’t resist) (12)

8:15 PM: Cesar salad with cheesesteak meat from Pasquale’s (10 maybe?)

total carbs: 50

Tuesday 2/1/17

8AM: coffee with cream

9AM: 1 hamburger (plain, no bun), guacamole, carrot and hummus (4), celery and pb (4)

12:30 PM: SP berry bar (20)

2:45 PM: Latte from Lemon St. Market, 6 oz. jerusalem artichoke soup (maybe 18 g of carbs?), slice gf bread with butter (12), SP chocolate (4), tuna salad

7 PM: Dinner at DipCo! 1 martini (10), 1 greek salad with blackened catfish (0), stuffed mushroom caps (0?)

Total carbs – 72

How to Survive Christmas….Without Eating Sugar.

Christmas can be a tricky season to navigate.

For many people who are trying to eat better, it’s downright treacherous. It’s like the season consists of one dietary pitfall after another.

Since when does Christmas = sugar? 

Perhaps, once upon a time, Christmas was the only time of year people got to eat sugar. My husband’s grandmother talked about her childhood Christmas in Finland. She would get one orange for Christmas.

And that’s it. That’s all she would get. One orange.

And you can be sure she almost never got to eat candy. She was probably lucky if she got to eat a turnip once in a while.

Seems very strange to us affluent, modern types.

So I challenge you to avoid ALL sugar this Christmas.

Make Christmas about something else other than gaining 10 lbs and shooting your blood sugar through the roof.

I know.

You’re asking, how do I do that?!?!

It’s not complicated.

Here are 5 steps to avoiding sugar this Holiday Season:

  1. Don’t bring it in your house. That’s right, just don’t buy any! It’s bad enough sugar is everywhere ELSE you go. Don’t make matters worse by actually purchasing it.
  2. When you go to a holiday party, bake something that doesn’t have sugar. And just eat that instead of the rest of the garbage that’s there. There are lots of delicious sugar-free baked treats at
  3. Better yet, make some savory treats like gluten-free biscuits or kale chips.  Instead of eating the sugary poison everybody else brought, gorge on your healthy snacks instead!
  4. Try this exercise to learn to resist the temptation. Pick up a cookie from the tray your co-worker brought in to work. Hold it in your hands for a moment. Feel the weight of it. Observe the shape of it. Cup it in your hands and bring it up to your face.  Take a deep breath. Let the scent of the cookie penetrate to the deepest recesses of your lungs. Then, slowly and calmly, walk over and drop the cookie in the garbage can. If you can do this you will know you are starting to break your sugar addiction. Do not, however, start eating the cookies that are left!
  5. Ask me or Dr. Sheehan about Gymnema herbal liquid next time you come into the office. This is like the antidote to sugar. Instead of eating sugar, put a few drops of this on your tongue. You won’t even be able to look at the powdered sugar-covered delectables after that!

5 Reasons You’re Sick

Sickness and health are big topics in today’s discourse. If you want to be healthy, wouldn’t it be good to find out what makes people healthy, and do that? Wouldn’t is also be good to find out what makes people sick, and avoid or handle those things? In this blog I am going to address what the root causes of sickness are, so you can avoid them and get yourself on the road to health.

Have you ever asked your conventional medical practitioner “why?” If you have, you know it can be a frustrating experience. I had recurring chronic infections in my early 20’s. During this time, I asked several doctors why this was happening to me. They had literally no answer. They wouldn’t even address the question. Instead, it was, “here, just take this. This is what you take for what you’ve got.” Well, what I had just kept coming back, even after I took the meds.

And I wasn’t satisfied. I wanted to fix my problem, and I wanted to know why. It wasn’t until I met Keith Sheehan that anyone even started to answer that question.

Sickness – disease – ill-health – feeling crappy — these don’t just fall out of the sky and hit you in the head. Our natural state is radiant health. So what is going wrong? Here is a list of 5 causes of sickness. From these you can find the real reason for your sickness and health. Then once you find the real reason, take some action to change it!

  1. In general, our diets suck. Or, even if your diet doesn’t suck right now, it did suck for a large chunk of your life. Sickness and health depend primarily on our diet. For example, I was a vegetarian for twenty years and ate mostly bagels, tofu and cake. Sorry, not enough nutrition in those foods to really lay the foundation for health. What we eat keeps us alive, but how well we eat (or ate) determines how well we live.
  2. Even when we do start to improve our diet, we are still eating the wrong diet for us. I thought going vegetarian would be healthier than eating meat. So I was working on eating better, according to the information I had at the time. But the veg diet just wasn’t right for me, as chronic skin problems, hormonal issues and fatigue were cropping up. I had to become more flexible mentally in order to adopt the correct approach for me.
  3. Even when we do start to eat the right diet for us, the soil is depleted and we’re just not getting the nutrition we should from all that good food. Vegetables, fruits, meats, fish – the nutritive content just ain’t what it used to be! According to this article – as yields have gone up, nutritional content of foods has gone down. Like a quality vs. quantity thing.
  4. We’re not taking the right supplements. I have seen several folks just recently who would not start to get better on a program with me until they cut out taking the supplements that were blocking their healing process. It sounds weird, I know. All supplements were not created equal. So I recommend seeking out the proper guidance on what specific nutrient support to take. Because we do need to fill in the gaps that we’re not getting in our diets.
  5. We don’t exercise. Hello? Physical activity, anyone? According to this article, only 20% of us are getting enough exercise. No wonder we’re generally depressed, overweight, tired, and stressed. Exercise is a medicine that will end those problems.
  6. Six? There are six reasons for poor health? Well, mostly there is only one reason. See reason #1. But I’m reserving #6 for stresses and toxins that may be keeping you sick that you will need a professional to locate and identify. You may not be able to do much about #6 right at this point, but you can sure do something about numbers 1,2,3,4 and 5! So get to it!

And even when the pieces of the puzzle are finally in place – proper diet, nutritional supplementation and exercise – then your body will take time to heal. It won’t happen overnight! But there is hope. And we can help! Call our office today to get yourself on the road to better health.

And I’m reporting my food to you.

This morning I had: coffee with butter and cinnamon, cashews, ground beef with onions, sweet potatoes and curry powder

At 12:00 PM I had: Greek Salad with some tuna salad on top. I skipped the dressing but used the juice from inside the bright green (banana)? peppers. Unsweetened iced tea with lemon.

1:30 PM: another cup of coffee. I’ve started using 1/2 caf (mixing full caf with decaf)

3:00 PM: a SP berry bar

I haven’t had supper yet, but I’m likely to have another salad and wings at DipCo. Sauce on the side! And perhaps one alcoholic beverage. But also maybe not. I haven’t decided yet.

Caffeine Blues

I have been historically a big fan of caffeine: in fact about two years ago I wrote a very popular blog about coffee. I was explaining how to make your coffee “Bulletproof”. Now maybe you’ve heard of the “Bulletproof” blog. This blog (and online store) is geared toward helping people achieve their full potential–to get the most out of every area of their life. This is a purpose I can get behind…so check it out. And I love coffee. I have drunk a cup a day for years.

Here are a few of the different ways I have enjoyed my coffee:

  1. drip
  2. Fresh ground French press
  3. Espresso machine
  4. with coconut oil blended in
  5. with butter blended in
  6. “Bulletproof”
  7. with coconut oil and butter blended in
  8. with heavy cream
  9. with milk and sugar free caramel syrup
  10. with half and half, when traveling
  11. black (only when absolutely necessary)

You get the picture. For many years (probably about 10) I have looked forward to my daily coffee. I can remember going to sleep at night and saying to myself “I can’t wait for the morning when I can have my delicious cup of coffee.” Yes, it was true love.

But recently I decided to give it up. Last week, in fact. I have been one week free of coffee. Now why on earth would I decide to make such a batty move?

Well it all has to do with my thyroid and adrenals. Because I am personally what you would call (and we in our office call) a thyroid and adrenal case. It’s not that I have any sort of disease–it’s more that those organs are a little weak and tend toward imbalance from time to time. Especially when I’m under stress. It’s not that my life is terribly stressful, it’s more that I work a lot and demand a lot of myself, and I have to be “on” a lot, which demands that my thyroid and adrenals work harder than usual.

The other thing about thyroids, and from time to time my thyroid too, is that they can become imbalanced in sort of an unusual way. Not quite hypo–you’ve probably heard a lot about hypo-thyroid situations, and not quite hyper (maybe you’ve heard about hyper-thyroids as well). But it’s like the thyroid goes a bit out of whack and wavers between hypo and hyper, which correlates symptomatically to up and down emotions and fluctuations of energy levels as well. This is not a medical condition, it’s just something that we have observed with stressed-out thyroids. Nutrition Response Testing is the only way to identify this sensitive situation. These thyroids need extra special care in the form of nutritional support, stress reduction, and yes–reducing the use of stimulants such as caffeine.

So from time to time I feel a little tired out or a bit keyed-up…I have my husband check my thyroid. My thyroid health is something I’ve been working on using stress reduction, diet and supplementation, but the piece I’ve been missing is reducing the stimulants. This is why I took the plunge and decided to cut out the coffee.

The first few days were rough. I tried to make up for the coffee withdrawal by drinking lots of black tea and mate, but I was still feeling exhausted and foggy. But now I can gladly say now that I’m over the hump, and I’m going to cut my caffeine back little by little from here. And my energy is better! Somehow that one little cup of coffee a day was not serving me. But by golly, am I glad coffee was there for me when I needed it.

So don’t panic and assume that you need to cut out coffee. I almost never recommend that my clients cut it out. But certain people might benefit. Here is a great article by Chris Kresser on coffee:  “Coffee is good for you–unless it’s not.”


Here’s my diet log for the last few days:

Monday 10/31/16

7AM: black tea with milk (4)

8:30 AM: chicken with cabbage, onion and guacamole

11:00 AM: SP Berry bar (21)

2:30 PM: 1/2 c pecans (3), pumpkin seeds (1), chicken salad, homemade chai with rooibos and pu-erh tea

8:00 PM: sweet potato with butter (10), 1/2 diet coke, rooibos chai with milk and 1 tsp honey (10)

Carb total for Monday: 54 g

Tuesday 11/1/16

7:00 AM: homemade chai with mate and milk (4), chicken meatballs, black tea

1:30 PM: 1/2 SF chocolate bar (4), gluten free egg, cheese and bacon sandwich (34), mixed nuts (5), apple snitz (10), green tea

6:00 PM: potato chips (36), 1 diet coke

7:00 PM: mixed nuts (5), carrots (3), green tea with milk and stevia (4)

Carb total for Tuesday: 105

Nutrition Response Testing Graduation!

On September 24, 2016 I officially graduated from the final level of the Nutrition Response Testing program. This is the culmination of two years of training.

Nutrition Response testing is in my blood, so to speak. Dr. Sheehan helped me 18 years ago using a system of analysis very similar to Nutrition Response Testing. He helped me get rid of some chronic infections that I had been suffering with for years. He used natural supplements and herbs that worked with my body to actually fix what was going wrong. It was not a purely symptom-based approach. Conventional medical treatments (i.e. drugs) were not getting to the root cause of my chronic infections. What I really needed help with was fixing my immune system! At that time I “converted”. Nutrition Response Testing is my health care now! I have been able to take care of 99% of all of my health concerns using this system. The only time I go to the “regular doctor” is to get a skin tag removed. 🙂

Since I have begun doing nutritional counseling and using Nutrition Response Testing, I have been able to help many people with symptoms and physical problems they didn’t think anyone would be able to help. The secrets are to figure out: 1) what’s the body’s priority, 2) what’s stressing the body out, and 3) what is the best approach to fix these things. I help people work with what their body is trying to accomplish instead of against it. Your body wants to heal; it’s always working to heal in fact. It’s just that sometimes there are road blocks that need to be cleared. My friend and colleague Sarah Outlaw in Cherry Hill, NJ has this to say about Nutrition Response testing.

One of the best things about being a graduate is that now I am part of a network of professionals. There are practitioners all over the country using this technique. These people were not satisfied with the status quo in health care and sought out Nutrition Response Testing so that they could really help their patients. Making a difference is what really matters, right? Helping someone to feel better…without the use of potentially dangerous and harmful treatments…that is what it’s all about! There is no better feeling on earth; it’s actually like a high. So now, back to work for me. And as for you…come check out what we have to offer. Come to a New Patient Day to learn more. Nutrition Response Testing changed my life. And if you qualify as a Nutrition Response Testing case, it has the potential to change yours.

Ketogenic Diet Journal

I started on a ketogenic diet last week. A ketogenic diet is an extremely low carbohydrate, moderate protein, and high fat diet, which has been shown to switch metabolism to fat burning and also can have many other health benefits. This diet is not for everyone. Here is one incredibly well-researched and objective article about the pros and cons of a very low carb diet. Please consult with a qualified healthcare professional before attempting this diet for weight loss or any other reason.

That being said, I needed to try the ketogenic diet out for myself. According to the keto-stix, I am producing a small amount of ketones. This means my body is starting to switch to fat burning. The secret to switching to this diet is to make sure you are getting plenty of fat. Getting enough fat will prevent any of the common effects of the diet that people may experience at the beginning (mental fogginess, grouchiness, low energy). I have successfully entered ketosis, and I feel great! I managed with a minimum of the effects just mentioned.

So as a reference for everyone, I’m posting my diet log here so everyone will have a good example of the diet I followed. I am following 5.5 days of very low carbohydrate and and 1.5 days of very high (whole food) carbohydrate because I feel that for me staying in ketosis continuously will not be beneficial.

Is a ketogenic diet right for you? Please do your research. For me, this was an experiment and I will probably not be doing this long term. Dr. Sheehan started with me, but he had to stop because he realized it was not beneficial for him for several reasons. Like I stated before, consult with a qualified health care professional before starting a diet like this.

So without further ado, here is my food journal:

Laura’s Keto Diet Tracker
Meals x3 Fat Protein Carb Targets: Fat – 147
33 20 5 Protein – 88
Snacks x2 25 9 3 Carb – 22
Thursday, August 18
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
Salmon (3 oz) 36 15 0 Daily Tracker
Avocado 0 20 5 Protein Remaining -1
Coffee 0 0 0 Fat Remaining -2
Butter (TBSP) 0 12 0 Carb Remaining 0
Macadamia Nuts (15) 3 30 3
Celery (2) 0 0 2
Peanut Butter 8 16 4
Chx Meatballs 28 20 1
Red pepper 1/4 0 0 2
Guacamole 1 9 2
Beef Sausage 12 18 1
Guacamole 1 9 2
Friday, August 19,2016
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
3 eggs 18 12 0 Daily Tracker
1 TBSP butter 0 12 0 Protein Remaining 3.5
1 TBSP coconut oil 0 12 0 Fat Remaining -13
Avocado, 1/2 0 10 2.5 Carb Remaining 10
2 pcs bacon 6 6 0
Tomato 0.5 0 1
Macadamia Nuts -10 2 22 2
Salmon 36 15 0
Butter 0 12
1 fat bomb 1 10 1
1 beef hot dog 12 18 1
2 chx sausages 7 5 0.5
2 fat bombs 2 20 2
1 tbsp heavy cream 0 6 0
red pepper 1/4 0 0 2
 (Saturday I carbed out and didn’t track)
Sunday 8-21-16
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
Coffee w 1 tbsp butter 0 12 0 Daily Tracker
pork sausage 14 20 2 Protein Remaining -13
avocado 1/2 0 10 2.5 Fat Remaining -5
fat bomb 1 10 1 Carb Remaining 4
macadamia nuts-15 2 22 2
fat bomb 1 10 1
coconut milk 1 cup 1 4.5 1
1 scoop whey 24 2 2
beef stew 30 40 2
1/2 c coconut yogurt 0 3.5 3.5
1 fat bomb 1 10 1
2 pickle spears 0 0 0
chicken leg/thigh 27 8 0
Monday August 22
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
coffee w/butter 0 12 0 Daily Tracker
Beef Stew 35 45 3 Protein Remaining -23
1/2 avocado 0 10 2.5 Fat Remaining -14
Carb Remaining -3.5
15 macadamia nuts 2 22 2
chicken salad 40 20 4
guacamole 1 9 2
Celery 0 0 2
Peanut Butter 2 TBSP 8 16 4
sliced turkey breast 1.5 oz 15 2 6
cheese 1.5 oz 10 13 0
butter 1 tbsp 0 12 0
Tuesday August 23
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
Coffee w/ butter 0 12 0 Daily Tracker
3 eggs scrambled 18 12 0 Protein Remaining -5
macadamia nuts – 15 2 22 2 Fat Remaining -7.5
Carb Remaining 6.5
1/2 c coconut yogurt 0 3.5 3.5
1 scoop whey 24 2 2
pork rinds 15 24 0
choco mint fiber bar 2
fat bombs (2) 2 20 2
1 tbsp butter 0 12 0
chicken salad w/greens 30 20 2
macadamia nuts – 10 2 15 2
mayonnaise -homemade 0 12 0
Wednesday August 24, 2016
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
coffee with butter 0 12 0 Daily Tracker
extra butter 0 12 0 Protein Remaining -5
chicken stew 14 5 2 Fat Remaining -16.5
guacamole 1 9 2 Carb Remaining -1.5
sour cream 0 4 2
1/2 c coconut yogurt 0 3.5 3.5
protein powder 24 2 2
15 macadamia nuts 2 22 2
8 chicken meatballs & veg stew 28 20 4
sour cream 0 4 2
2 fat bombs 2 20 2
pork sausage 20 30 0
2 fato bombs 2 20 2
Thursday August 25, 2016
Breakfast Protein Fat Carbs
1 c coconut milk 0 4.5 1 Daily Tracker
1 scoop whey 24 2 2 Protein Remaining 17
coffee with butter 0 12 0 Fat Remaining 17.5
extra butter 0 12 0 Carb Remaining 7
fat bomb 1 10 1
heavy cream 1/2c 0 48 0
another scoop protein 24 2 2
chicken meatball stew 20 12 3
sour cream 0 4 2
guacamole 1 9 2
choc mint fiber bar 1 14 2

5 Worst Protein Bar Ingredients

I found this great article on Protein Bar Ingredients on Dr. Laura Bomback’s web site...she’s a Nutrition Response Testing(R) Practitioner and Chiropractor in Fall River, Mass.

5 Worst Protein Bar Ingredients

By Whole Lifestyle Nutrition

Protein bars…so convenient yet so full of garbage. They hold the promise of being healthy, easy and full of muscle-building protein.  But have you ever taken a few minutes to look at what’s actually IN them?

I think you’re going to be in for a shock when you read the TRUTH about the ingredients in some of the most popular protein bars on the market right now.

Let’s get right to it:

1 – Soy Protein Isolate (SPI)

This is, unfortunately, one of the most prevalent protein sources you’ll find in protein bars, especially those marketed to women. This marketing would have you believe that soy is an excellent protein source for women because of the isoflavones found in it. In reality, studies have indicated that these soy isoflavones can actually be TOXIC because of how the soy is processed (fermented soy products such as tofu are fine, just FYI). In addition, SPI was actually considered a WASTE product in soy processing until recently, when it was discovered that money could be made by passing it off as a protein source. It’s cheap and definitely NOT a high-quality protein. It should be avoided.

And the final nail in the soy coffin: GMO. A very high percentage of the soy grown in the United States is from genetically modified organisms (GMO). They don’t currently have to be labeled as such, but if you’re buying any sort of processed food, chances are very good you’re getting a GMO-sourced product.

2 – High Fructose Corn Syrup

This is an easy one to figure out…the adverse health effects of it are well documented (contrary to what the commercials from the Corn Growers Association claim – those are truly among the most annoying commercials in existence, trying to make people who question corn syrup look stupid). It’s one of the WORST things you can eat and yet there are still bars that use it as a primary ingredient.

3 – Fractionated Palm Kernel Oil

Palm kernel oil is a cheap, unhealthy fat. Unlike plain palm oil, palm kernel oil can’t be obtained organically. Instead, the oil must be extracted from the pit with a gasoline-like hydrocarbon solvent. The fractioned form is the most processed…if you see that in the ingredients, you should definitely avoid it.

4 – Sugar Alcohols

This includes ingredients like Maltitol Syrup, Xylitol, Sorbitol, Lactitol, Mannitol, and Erythritol. Sugar alcohols are included in bars for sweetness…especially in bars that are “carb controlled”. Sugar alcohols don’t impact blood sugar as much as regular sugar because they’re not well absorbed in the digestive tract…and when things aren’t well absorbed in the digestive tract, things happen (if you know what I mean).

In small amounts, sugar alcohols aren’t a big problem, but if you start getting into the double digits of grams of sugar alcohol (and many low-carb bars are in the 20 gram range), THEN you can start to see unpleasant digestive issues.

5 – Artificial Sweeteners

I won’t get into the whole debate about whether artificial sweeteners are bad for you or not and what they turn into in your body, etc. Personally, I’m of the mindset that if it’s created by science, chances are good your body won’t recognize it and won’t be able to metabolize it into something actually good for you. Therefore, I try and stay away from artificial sweeteners as much as I possibly can. I find the actual natural flavor of real food to be pretty good :). In Summary…

Those are the top 5 worst protein bar ingredients…and you will actually find bars that contain ALL of these ingredients in them.

The main problem I have with the vast majority of protein bars today is that at their most base level, they’re deceptive. The bars are put forward as convenient, healthy alternatives to food for “on the go” people. Yet when you take a close look at the ingredients, they’re actually WORSE for you than most candy bars.

Obviously money is the biggest factor…companies that use high-quality ingredients in their bars have to charge more for them in order to stay in business. Hence the brick-like slop sold in bar form that you’ll find in the grocery store aisles today.

Cleanse Time!

I woke up last Monday morning knowing I needed a cleanse. The urge had been brought on by an exchange Keith and I had had the day before:

Keith: “Did you know I paid $10 for that bag of nuts?”

Me: (feeling indignant, with a mouthful of peanuts and cashews) “……..”

Keith: “Maybe you should try to exercise more self control.”

So enough was enough. I knew a cleanse would help me get rid of the food cravings that had been creeping up on me and also help to slim me down a little. Not that I’m overweight, I just have this extra layer of something (fat) around the middle developing, and I don’t want to get used to it.

I turned to the Standard Process Purification program. This program has stood us in good stead in the past, both in helping our clients and also for ourselves. Keith reminded me that he had lost 30 lbs. in the past when he followed the plan for a month.

The general gist of the Standard Process Purification program is that you eat only vegetables, fruits and green shakes for 10 days, after which you add in some solid protein for the rest of the cleanse (10 more days). So it’s a 21-day program. The vegetables can be cooked or raw. This is a great time of year to do this cleanse because there are plenty of wonderful vegetables and fruits available.

You can find the full Standard Process Purification guide here.

Key food items to cut out are: nuts, dairy, meat (at least for the first 10 days), and cheat snacks like sugar free chocolate and protein bars. I would have to find other foods to snack on.

When I announced to Keith that I was going to do a cleanse, he suggested, “maybe I should do a cleanse too!” And thus we are doing the cleanse together. It’s great to have a partner to encourage you through the cleanse!

Cleanse update so far: I began last Monday, July 18. I felt great the first day. The second and third day I had some tiredness and mild headaches. This is normal when cutting all junky foods out of your diet, as the organs begin to recover. By day 4 I felt fine with lots of energy. On day 7 I felt a major energy drain and realized it was because I needed protein. So I added in some salmon. Most people can wait the whole 10 days before adding in protein, but I know myself and adding the meat and fish was necessary. Still going strong today on day 11! And I am down 3 pounds. I might just keep this cleanse going even after day 21, so I can enjoy the beneficial effects as long as possible!

Here is my food journal for the first few days on my cleanse:

Monday, July 18, 2016

AM: coffee with butter, water with whey protein (pre-workout), SP Complete shake (post-workout)

Lunch: SP Complete Shake

Dinner: SP Complete Shake, peppers and cucumber with guacamole

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

AM: Coffee with butter, SP Complete shake

Lunch: SP Complete Shake

Snack: SP Complete Shake, carrots & hummus, green pepper, 1/2 avocado

Dinner: SP Complete Shake, cucumber, green pepper, guacamole, 1 roasted beet

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

AM: Coffee with butter, SP Complete Shake

10 AM: 1/2 avocado

Lunch: SP Complete Shake, green pepper, cucumber, guacamole, carrots, hummus, 1 red beet, mango

Dinner: 2 dill pickles, SP Complete Shake, cabbage, onion, summer squash curry with coconut milk and cilantro