Macro-nutrients – briefly

Macro-nutrients are required in larger amounts than micro-nutrients. Macro-nutrients include:

  • oxygen,
  • water,
  • protein, such as eggs, fish, turkey, liver, and beef, or vegan options, such as lentils, chickpeas, tofu or fermented soy, beans, and quinoa,
  • healthy fats, such as pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, almonds, walnuts, flaxseed oil, olive oil, and coconut oil,
  • carbohydrates, such as vegetables, fruits, grains, beans, and legumes.

Official, academic nutrition looks at the details of how these macro-nutrients nutrients are digested. They draw complicated diagrams of “metabolic pathways”, as if all foods were digested in a standardized way. This leads to stale advice to “eat a balanced diet”. They compile statistics. This point of view often:

  • overlooks biochemical individuality (an optimal mix or balance for you may not be optimal for me),
  • overlooks micro-nutrients, such as minerals and vitamins found in vegetables, fruits, herbs, and spices, and
  • is based on a “food pyramid” that favors certain producers at the expense of individuals looking for health via food.

Macro-nutrients – in detail


Oxygen is an essential nutrient. You obtain oxygen mostly from the air you breathe, but the more alkaline-forming foods you eat, the more OH, by definition of alkalinity. The acid-alkaline balance is relevant to this.

It is possible to obtain more oxygen by breathing consciously. Journalist James Nestor describes why and how to breathe consciously in this book, “Breath“. “Modern research is showing us that making even slight adjustments to the way we inhale and exhale can jump-start athletic performance; rejuvenate internal organs; halt snoring, asthma, and autoimmune disease; and even straighten scoliotic spines. None of this should be possible, and yet it is.

Dr. Mercola interviews (1:37 video), Dr. Peter Litchfield about why proper breathing is the key to optimal health.


Your body is made of sixty to seventy percent water, even more if you count the water inside your cells. There is more to water than quenching your thirst. The sensation of thirst is the last sign of dehydration, not the first, particularly as you age. Fresh, cold spring water may be the healthiest of all. You can look for a spring near you on Some people think that they are hungry, when they are really lacking water. Are you dehydrated without knowing it?

In 1992, Dr. Fereydoon Batmanghelidj, MD, first published his book, “Your Body’s Many Cries for Water. Imprisoned in Teheran, Iran after the revolution of 1979, Dr. Batmanghelidj treated a fellow prisoner who had crippling peptic ulcer pain (stomach pain). With no medications at his disposal, he gave him two glasses of water. Within eight minutes, the pain disappeared. Dr. B. instructed his patient to drink two glasses of water every three hours. His patient became absolutely pain-free for his four remaining months in prison.

Dr. B. successfully treated three thousand fellow prisoners suffering from stress-induced peptic ulcer disease with water alone. While in prison, he conducted extensive research into the medicinal effects of water in preventing and relieving many painful degenerative diseases. Despite being offered an early release, Dr. B. chose to stay an extra four months in prison to complete his research into the relationship of dehydration and bleeding peptic ulcer disease. He published the report of his findings as an editorial in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology in June 1983.

With some variation from person to person, your muscles are about seventy-five percent water; your blood is about eighty-two percent water; your lungs are about ninety percent water; even your bones are about twenty-five percent water. Your health truly depends on the quality and quantity of the water you drink. According to Dr. Batmanghelidj, “unintentional chronic dehydration can cause pain and many degenerative diseases, which can be prevented and treated by increasing water intake on a regular basis”. The perception of thirst is not reliable. Dr. Batmanghelidj describes his opinions about modern medicine and about the therapeutic use of water and salt in this two-hour, ten-minute lecture.

The use of water for remedies is not new. Sebastian Kneipp published his methods for the therapeutic external use of water in My Water Cure in 1894.

Naturally, the idea that water can be used therapeutically to relieve unintended chronic dehydration (ucd) makes some people uncomfortable. Try it for yourself and see. In small amounts, drink a total of at least two to three liters (or quarts) of clean water (or healthy smoothies free of sugar and dairy) per day, when you first wake up, at least fifteen minutes before meals, and between meals. Dr. David Jockers DC points out the many uses of water for good health in water and its uses for health.

There is controversy about tap water compared with bottled water. The comparison depends on the local water and its treatment and on the person and their condition.

For further insights into water, read “The Fourth Phase of Water: Beyond Solid, Liquid, and Vapor” by Gerald Pollack, who describes what he calls “structured water“.  This is also called (electrically) “charged water”. Pollack presents “The Fourth Phase of Water” in a related one hundred-minute video and “Water, Cells, and Life” in a brief fourteen minute video. 

The Water Wizard: The Extraordinary Properties of Natural Water” by Viktor Schauberger is original thinking about water and its utility for health. Also see research by Dr. Tom Cowan MD, Dr. Carla Nuday, Andreas Kalcker, Professor Kwanda, and Patrick Flanagan, or else look at videos by Professor Yamamoto of Japan.

You can disinfect water, using small quantities of sodium chlorite (not sodium chloride, which is table salt) mixed with an acid, such as lemon juice or even very dilute hydrochloric acid, and water. This mixture produces chlorine dioxide, a gas that is dissolved in the water. You can also find chlorine dioxide solution (CDS) already dissolved in water often at a concentration of three thousand parts per million (3000 ppm or .3%). This is not household bleach (sodium hypochlorite) nor the chlorine used to treat the water in swimming pools. Use caution, and use this mixture in small quantities, such as at most one to four drops of CDS (three thousand parts per million, 3000 ppm, or .3%) in a large glass of water. Do not let it contact metal, such as a spoon. If you store it in the refrigerator, it can last for months.

For details of other uses, read Andreas Kalcker, Kerri Rivera, and Jim Humble. How does it work? This is not an endorsement of any supplier. There is controversy about this substance for other uses than disinfecting water and cleaning hospitals and food processing equipment. Do your own research, and think for yourself. I suggest this for purifying water if necessary.

It may sound strange, but urine, the water that you produce, has also been used therapeutically. This is not new. They drank urine in ancient China. The idea is not so strange, if you think about composting. More recently, Jim Armstrong describes this practice in detail in “The Water of Life – A Treatise on Urine Therapy“, originally published in 1944. Before you smirk, or dismiss or ridicule this idea, do your own research. I have never tried this myself, nor do I promote this, but I would if I had to. 

How clean is your tap water? If you live in the USA, check the tap water database of the Environmental Working Group to find out. Nancy Addison describes her views of how to stay hydrated for optimal health.

Drs. Tom Cowan, Zach Bush, and Christiane Northrup describe their prescription to “hydrate now” in their brief online course

On the other hand, Dr. Joe Mercola describes his views in “You Really Don’t Need to Drink Eight Glasses of Water Each Day“;



Your body is made of fifteen to twenty percent protein. After water, protein is the second most common substance in the body. Your muscles, connective tissue, internal organs, skin, hair, eyes, nails, and blood plasma all contain protein. 

Ir is possible to be deficient in protein.

Protein is found in both animals and some vegetables. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body. It makes up thirty percent of your total protein, and it is often called the “glue” that holds our bodies together. Collagen is the main component of connective tissue. Collagen maintains the structure and integrity of your skin, muscle tissue, bones and tendons. One simple way to get more collagen and protein is to consume more godd-quality, even dried, bone broth.

To maintain health, a part of each of us dies every day. This process is like a lizard shedding its skin, but it happens internally in very slow motion. Technically, it is called “apoptosis”. You need protein (and healthy fat) to replace the cells that are lost each day to apoptosis. It is necessary to rebuild muscles and bones, to balance hormones, and to produce enzymes required for digestion.

Proteins contain the element nitrogen, but the nitrogen is naturally bound to other elements, such as carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, to form “amino acids“. Almost all foods from animal or vegetable sources contain small quantities of protein. Animal protein is more concentrated than vegetable protein. Also, animal protein from previously healthy animals, found in eggs, fish, chicken, turkey, liver, or beef, is easier for many people to digest than vegetable protein found in lentils, chickpeas (garbonzo beans), soy & tofu, rice, peanuts, other legumes and pulses (grains & beans), millet, oats, peas, carob, alfalfa, or others. 

Like requirements for minerals and vitamins, requirements for protein are a political football. Opinions vary widely about how much protein is required to maintain health. Note that the protein content depends on the specific food. The official narrative overlooks the fact that you are not a statistic. In other words, you may or may not be average, even beyond the question of adult, child, pregnant, or breast-feeding. Due to biochemical individuality, perhaps some people simply need more or less protein than others. This possibility is overlooked in official, academic nutrition.

According to blood type eating, if you have blood type O or B, for your good health, you may require small portions of good-quality animal protein, such as eggs, fish, turkey, or beef, even daily. Ideally, the animals you eat are free of the growth hormones, antibiotics, and painkillers often used in large-scale confined animal farming operations. There is no friendly way to kill an animal, but some ways cause less pain than others. “Nature is red in tooth and claw“, as the poet Tennyson put it. Pasture-raised, grass-fed (not grain-fed) animals, eggs, and beef may be the healthiest to eat, at least for some people.

The larger the ocean fish, the more likely it is contaminated with mercury. Small, ocean fish (not farmed fish), such as sardines, herring, and mackerel, may be optimal for many. Good-quality animal protein can be more expensive, but only small portions are required, such as one hundred to two hundred grams (three and a half to seven ounces). It is better to avoid large portions of animal protein. On a very strict budget, eggs are optimal.

Some people may be able to get enough protein from vegetable sources. Healthy sources of vegetable protein can include tofu, lentils, chickpeas, brown rice, tempeh, almonds, black beans, green beans, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, chia seeds, oats, buckwheat, quinoa, amaranth, broccoli, and adzuki beans. Some people can combine these foods in certain ways, such as rice and beans, to obtain a complete set of essential amino acids. Veganism really works for some people for their health, but not for everybody. If you are a vegan, but you feel tired, in pain, or unhealthy, are you willing to die for the cause? Some vegans do themselves a real service by eating eggs or fish at least now and then.

According to blood type eating, if you have blood type A or AB, you may be better able to digest vegetable protein. Perhaps you have a more durable secretion of digestion enzymes. Perhaps you are naturally more able to combine a grain and a legume, such as rice and beans. In this way, perhaps you obtain essential amino acids to make the protein for your bones, muscles, and good health.

Protein makes you feel full much more than lipids or carbohydrates. It is possible to have a deficiency in protein, but it is also possible to have an excess of protein. Listen to your body and possibly eat according to your blood type .

According to chrono-nutrition, it is better to eat (concentrated = animal) protein at breakfast and at lunch, but never at dinner. Besides boiled eggs or an omelet, have you ever tried turkey or beef sauteed with onions, mushrooms, and spinach for breakfast? It can be both delicious and nutritious, if you add salt and spices.

In this fifty-four minute podcast, Dr. Mark Hyman MD asks Dr. Gabrielle Lyon MD – are we eating too much (or not enough) protein for good health? My guess is that some people are eating too much protein, while others are not eating enough. I would further guess that the ability to absorb and assimilate protein depends on the person and on the specific protein.

After you break down protein in your stomach, you convert any excess to ammonia and then partly to urea. This is why public urinals that are not well ventilated smell like ammonia. Their users ate an excess of protein. (I don’t hang out in public urinals, but when I travel, I notice this.)

Are you getting enough protein? Are you protein deficient? Some people may require more protein than others for their health. Do you?

Can you get enough protein from plants? Some can, and some cannot. Stefan van Vliet answers the question, plant-based meat vs grass-fed meat, which is better for you?

Amino acids

To digest protein, whether animal or vegetable, you secrete and use hydrochloric acid and pepsin in your stomach. Using these enzymes, you break protein down into amino acids. Nine amino acids are essential, but are required to survive. They are called essential, because they can only be found in food. You and your metabolism can make non-essential amino acids.

The essential amino acids are leucine, isoleucine, methionine, phenylalanine, tryptophan, threonine, valine, and histidine.

You later re-assemble these amino acids to make new protein that you absorb and assimilate into your tissues, muscles, and bones. Shortage of any one of these amino acids constrains your ability to make the proteins you needs to strengthen your muscles and to stay healthy. As you age, you may need more protein than you did when you were younger. If you do not get enough protein, your muscles can shrink, making you weak.

Collagen makes up bone cartilage and connective tissues. The most abundant amino acids in collagen are glycine, lysine, and proline. Dr. Josh Axe recommends bone broth, animal proteins, spinach, kale, pumpkin, and banana as sources of glycine in food. According to Dr. Ron Hunninghake, MD, glycine supplements can be used to detoxify glyphosate.

Lysine is an essential amino acid needed for growth and nitrogen balance in the body. It may prompt the body to absorb and conserve calcium. Lysine is useful to form collagen, antibodies, hormones, and enzymes. Among other foods, sardines, turkey, and adzuki beans have lysine, which can also be used to resist infection. Beef, particularly grass-fed beef, turkey, chicken, tuna, pumpkin seeds, eggs and white beans also contain concentrated amounts of lysine.

Leucine is an essential amino acid necessary for building and maintaining muscle, according to Dr. Mark Hyman, MD. A lack of leucine can lead to a loss of bone. Leucine is also used to control blood sugar. Beef, salmon, and eggs are healthy sources of leucine for some people, such as blood type O. Pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, lentils, peanuts, tofu, oats, and sesame seeds may be healthy sources of leucine for other people, such as blood type A.

Tryptophan is another essential amino acid. It creates niacin (vitamin B3), which can increase serotonin (a calming neurotransmitter) and melatonin (a drowsiness-inducing hormone), so it can be a natural sedative. Among other foods, bananas, dried dates, sweet potatoes, oats, turkey, fish, and meat contain tryptophan. Mashed sweet potatoes is a gentle sedative for me about two hours before bedtime. 5-HTP (five-hydroxytryptophan) is a supplement that is used to increase serotonin.

The liver requires taurine to produce and to thin bile. Taurine contains sulfur. It is essential for metabolism, for the heart, to decrease stress, to detoxify, and to increase relaxation. Low taurine and glycine can result in anxiety, depression, and slower detoxification, according to Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt in the Townsend Letter. The amino acids cystine and methionine also contain sulfur. Shellfish, beef, turkey, chicken, and seaweed have taurine. 

Arginine is an amino acid required to make proteins, such as collagen. It also becomes the gas nitric oxide (NO), which relaxes blood vessels in the body, possibly strengthening the heart and stimulating blood flow. Meat, turkey, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, carob, oats, and other foods are excellent sources of arginine. Beets have a similar effect, increasing nitric oxide. There is a balance between arginine and lysine. The optimal balance is individual. Arginine and tyrosine together may be useful for some people to release nitric oxide and relax blood vessels.

Glutamine can be used to control alcohol or sugar cravings, and it can also heal the gut. When you digest fermented foods, such as sauerkraut, kimchi, or apple cider vinegar, you produce more glutamine. Glutathione is a substance made from the amino acids glycine, cysteine, and glutamine. It is produced naturally by the liver and involved in many processes in the body, including tissue building and repair, making chemicals and proteins needed in the body, and for the immune system. Certain foods have glutamine

Cysteine, which contains sulfur and is found in NAC (N-acetyl-cysteine) supplements, combined with vitamin C and vitamin B1, may be useful to reduce the severity of a hangover, according to Dr. George Lundberg, MD. Meat, dairy, eggs, and some cereals have some cysteine. Emergency rooms of many hospitals use NAC supplements for rapid detoxification, for example after an overdose of tylenol (paracetamol). 

Without tyrosine, your body cannot make dopamine (for mood and motivation), norepinephrine (for muscle recovery and blood flow), and adrenaline (for focus and drive). Many people use L-tyrosine to offset the effects of coffee withdrawal and to increase energy, since it is a precursor to dopamine. The thyroid gland combines tyrosine and iodine to make thyroid hormone. A sluggish thyroid can indicate a deficiency or tyrosine or iodine, according to Drs. David Minkoff MD and David Brownstein MD. A deficiency of tyrosine and phenylalanine can cause premature graying of hair, according to David Wolfe. 

L-theanine can lower the stress hormone, cortisol. It can also promote caffeine or alcohol withdrawal. It is found in leaves of green tea (less so in other teas) and in some mushrooms. L-theanine is a factor in transmitting nerve impulses in the brain. It can increase GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), which can reduce anxiety and have a calming, anti-depressant effect, according to Dr. Ben Johnson, MD.

L-phenylalanine can increase serotonin and dopamine levels. It is found in protein-containing foods, such as meat, fish, chicken, and eggs. A precursor to tyrosine, phenylalanine is used to make thyroid hormones; it is also used by the body to produce proteins.

Valine promotes muscle growth and tissue repair.

L-carnitine is an amino acid that was first isolated from meat (carnus in Latin) in 1905.  Carnitine is rapidly depleted during exercise, even moderate exercise. It is used to burn fat for energy. Published research on athletes has shown that l-carnitine supplements support exercise performance. 

Alanine, also called L-alanine or alpha-alanine (α-alanine), is among the 11 “non-essential” amino acids that your body can make. Besides being a part of many metabolic processes, it provides energy for your muscles, brain and central nervous system. Some of the conditions alanine can relieve include fatigue, low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), liver disease, high cholesterol, enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hypertrophy) and many others.

Dr. Denice Moffat lists amino acids, what they do, and what foods have them in her article, Amino Acid List and Best Bet Foods. Dr. Rodger Murphree DC describes amino acids, including how he uses them to prompt his patients to relieve themselves of anxiety and depression.

Creatine is an amino acid found in the muscles and the brain, produced in the liver and the brain, particularly from red meat and seafood. Dr. Josh Axe looks at risks and benefits of creatine (supplements) to strengthen muscles and the brain, at least for some people. Other observers advocate the use of creatine to increase muscles.


Fats are also known as lipids, which are made of long chains of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Fats include nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, and animal fat. Compared with vegetables, fruits, starch, and protein, each of us digests lipids the slowest of all foods. So it is better to eat nuts at the end of a meal or between meals, except that a few nuts with fruits or in a fruit smoothie, or a healthy oil with vegetables, can slow down the consequent insulin release and increase absorption of the nutrients.

Dr. Joe Mercola DC advocates krill oil and omega-three fats for the health of the brain and the eyes.

Healthy fats and oils

Dietary fats are organic substances that are insoluble in water. Certain fats, known as essential fatty acids, are necessary for good health, for example to produce energy and to maintain your skin. They make up most of the skin and the membranes that cover the cells in your body. You can find healthy fats in nuts, seeds, and healthy oils, such as pumpkin seeds, almonds, flaxseeds, walnuts, olive oil, hemp seeds, chia seeds, and coconut oil. Not all fats are the same, not all fats are healthy, and not all healthy fats are healthy for everybody. 

Weston Price was a dentist who studied native tribes in the 1930s in Canada, Peru, Scotland, Switzerland, and New Zealand, among other places. He wrote “Nutrition and Physical Degeneration“, which was published in 1938. He looked at what the natives traditionally ate and how they adapted to a “modern” diet. As a dentist, he noticed that before they started to eat “civilized” food, they had almost no cavities in their teeth. He compared groups of people before and after they started eating foods processed with sugar and starch. Only after they changed their eating habits did their teeth decline. continues the research of Dr. Price. They note,  “the two polyunsaturated fatty acids found most frequently in our foods are double unsaturated linoleic acid, with two double bonds – also called omega-six; and triple unsaturated linolenic acid, with three double bonds – also called omega-three. (The omega number indicates the position of the first double bond.) Your body cannot make these fatty acids and hence they are called ‘essential’. Each of us must obtain essential fatty acids from the foods we eat.” Beware that supplements may not be the answer.

Sally Fallon Morell, author of “Nourishing Traditions“, argues that balance and the ratio between omega-three and omega-six fats partly may determine whether the specific polyunsaturated fat is healthy or not. An overview of these fats is here. Ms. Morell advocates fresh fish (cod) liver oil instead of fish oil.

Processed linoleic acid (omega-six) can be toxic. This is why it is better to avoid soybean oil, corn oil, canola oil, safflower oil, and other processed vegetable oils. Processed vegetable oils are mostly made up of omega-six fatty acids, which can inflame many a digestive system.

Depending on the quantity, nuts, seeds, oils, and fats can be healthy for almost everybody, if you can find the specific nuts or seeds that are healthy for you, such as pumpkin seeds (O, A), hemp seeds (O), flax seeds (O, A), walnuts (O, A, B, AB), or olive oil (O, A, B, AB). Regarding healthy nuts, seeds, oils, and fats, some people can only digest a few nuts and seeds at a time, while others can digest handfuls at a time. This has to do with biochemical individuality and a digestive enzyme called alkaline phosphatase.

According to Peter Dr. D’Adamo ND, author of “Eat Right 4 Your Type“, people with blood type O tend to secrete more alkaline phosphatase, so they can digest more nuts and seeds than blood type A people. Blood type B tends to be similar to blood type O, while blood type AB tends to be similar to blood type A. Furthermore, certain nuts and seeds may be healthy for some people, but not for others, at least according to blood type eating. An average healthy adult human being of seventy to eighty kilograms (one hundred and fifty-five to one hundred and seventy-five pounds) has about the same amount of body fat as protein, fifteen to twenty percent.

Your brain is made up of at least sixty percent fat. You need healthy fat for your mental health and fertility, particularly fat called omega-three fatty acids. The benefits and foods are described here. Excellent sources of omega-three fat are:

  • hemp seeds,
  • chia seeds,
  • walnuts,
  • flax seeds,
     salmon, sardines, mackerel, and
  • some high-quality (unprocessed) fish oils, such as cod liver oil.

You are not a statistic. You are biochemically individual. Each person has individual needs for fat and an individual capacity to digest fat in food. Certain processed vegetable oils, such as soybean oil, corn oil, and canola oil, are inflammatory for almost everybody. If you eat healthy fat, such as olive oil, almonds, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds, then you drive out the unhealthy fats from your body.

For health via food, there are three types of fats:

  • saturated fat, such as coconut oil, real butter, and animal fat, which are solid at room temperature and resist heat, so it is useful for cooking,
  • mono-unsaturated fat, such as olive oil, which resist light heat, but are stable if refrigerated,
  • poly-unsaturated fat, such as flax seeds (or oil), hemp seeds (or oil), chia seeds, fish oil, and most processed vegetable oils, all of which can become rancid quickly, particularly if heated.

Most nuts and seeds have a mix of these three types of fats.

Until recently and since the 1950s, official academic nutrition has claimed that fat, particularly saturated fat, and not sugar, made people fat. Dr. Catherine Shanahan MD describes the origin of this misunderstanding. The official narrative still overlooks the difference between unhealthy fats in processed vegetable oils, such as omega-six, also known as linoleic acid, and healthy fats, such as saturated fats and omega-three. The theory that fat, particularly saturated fat, clogs your arteries and makes you fat has never been proven. In fact, the cholesterol theory of heart disease has recently been disproven. It is sugar and starch that make you fat.

Healthy oils include coconut oil, olive oil, flaxseed oil (linseed oil), and hemp seed oil. These oils are obtained by manual or mechanical pressing at low temperatures. Myself, I use coconut oil to cook omelets and sauté turkey and meat Coconut oil is a saturated fat, so it can stand some high heat. Olive oil can tolerate light heat but not high heat. If the coconut oil or the olive oil starts to smoke when you heat it, it has started to become unhealthy. Never heat flaxseed oil nor hemp seed oil, which can quickly become rancid. 

For detailed scientific insights into healthy fats, read the articles by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig PhD, “The Skinny on Fats” or “Why butter, eggs, & fat are good for you.” Another reference on healthy fats is the book “Fats that Heal, Fats that Kill“, by Udo Erasmus, who also presents his ideas and research in this eight-seven minute video. Dr. Chris Knobbe MD explains his point of view in the eighty-six minute video “The Scientific Truth behind Vegetable Oils versus Real Food Fats“. Nora Gedgaudas, author of “Primal Body. Primal Mind.” is an advocate of a high-fat diet for health. She describes do’s and dont’s on a high-fat diet.  

Unlike industrial oils, black seed oil (Nigella sativa) is cold-pressed. It has been used to reduce inflammation for thousands of years in the Middle East. In small quantities, such as one half a teaspoon to start, you can add use it as salad dressing or add it to steamed vegetables. Black seeds are also called black cumin or black sesame seeds. Other uses are known. This oil may make it possible to resist infection, strengthen the heart, and soothe the digestive system. 

Some oils, such as pumpkin seed oil, argan oil, hemp seed oil, apricot kernel oil, avocado oil, and almond oil, can be used to revitalize thinning hair.

Beware processed vegetable oils

Beware of industrially processed vegetable oils, such as corn oil, soybean oil, canola oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, cottonseed oil, and rice bran oil. They are used in many processed foods and also often used commercially to fry potatoes. They are usually heat-treated, deodorized, bleached, and hydrogenated. They are better avoided. The chemical processing and heat treatment of these oils destroy nutrients and introduce toxins. The result is “trans-fats“, also known as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils. They can cause slight inflammation of the digestive system and severe risks to your health over time. Canola oil is the most controversial. Processed vegetable oils can clog your arteries, slow your metabolism, and make you fat. 

These oil are made of omega-six fats, which tend to inflame the digestive system and cause chronic illness. They  lack the healthy omega-three fats found in flax seeds, hemp seeds, and chia seeds. They 

This illustration was taken from Sally Fallon’s seminar “Nourishing Traditions – The Key to Vibrant Health“. She took it from the book “Fats and Oils: Formulating and Processing for Applications” by Richard O’Brien. It is to be considered a fair use of the illustration. It shows how these industrial vegetable oils are processed:

How vegetable oils are processed
How vegetable oils are processed













Do you really want to consume these oils, knowing about this processing? Dr. Joe Mercola describes why and how to replace these unhealthy oils with healthy fats. On the other hand, Dr. Josh Axe has another opinion about foods and oils. Some vegetable oils, such as sunflower oil, are cold-pressed and may be healthy for some people, even if they have much more omega-six than omega-three fat.

Dr. Anne Zauderer MD describes how many nuts and seeds, such as pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, almonds, walnuts, Brazil nuts, pecans, and macadamia nuts can extend the length of telomeres, which tends to extend the longevity of the person. Telomeres are found at the ends of chromosomes. For details, you can watch her presentation, Food as Medicine – part 3.



Carbohydrates are not essential, unlike oxygen, water, protein, and fat. “Carbohydrates” is a confusing term in nutrition. It means simply that the food contains carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms, but it confuses different types of foods. In fact, this term refers to three types of foods:

  • vegetables, such as broccoli, spinach, carrots, beets, and onions,
  • fruit, such as apples, pears, and bananas,
  • starch, such as grains (cereals), beans, wheat, corn, and rice.

You digest carbohydrates more quickly than fats, which are also made of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Besides minerals and vitamins, carbohydrates in the form of fruits and vegetables contain fiber necessary for optimal digestion. 

Refined grains and cereals, such as wheat flour, even “whole wheat” flour, are the result of milling. This process removes the minerals and vitamins from the grain. Some of the millers then add vitamins, such as B vitamins, back into the refined flour. Starch is sometimes referred to as “slow sugars”, but in fact, after you eat a piece of bread, you break it down to sugar that enters your blood as quickly as refined sugar (citation). Some starch, for some people, can inflame the digestive system. Many people gain health and lose weight simply by completely cutting wheat from their eating habits, substituting vegetables, fruits, oats, buckwheat, brown rice, quinoa, or other grain-like foods.

You convert excess carbohydrate to fat in the body. It is sugar and starch that makes the body fat, not healthy nuts, seeds, and oils. This simple fact has been hidden in plain sight for many years.

Also be aware that grains and seeds contain phytic acid, which can deplete your body or minerals and vitamins. On the other hand, modest portions of nuts and seeds with phytic acid may be healthy, at least for some people.

Beware following the herd

When you receive the advice to “just eat a balanced diet”, what this usually refers to is a balance between protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Unfortunately, his stale advice overlooks that an optimal balance for you may not be an optimal balance for me. Each of us has individual requirements for protein and fat. Some people require less protein than others. Some people can digest more fat, such as nuts and seeds, than others. Some people have a naturally rapid digestion, while others digest more slowly. You are not a statistic, and you do not want to become a statistic. You are an individual, and self-knowledge is often the best knowledge.

The stale advice to “just eat a balanced diet” also overlooks micronutrients, such as minerals and vitamins. Many people are deficient in minerals and vitamins without knowing it. Nutrient deficiencies can have severe consequences over time, causing disease, but needs for minerals and vitamins can be individual. Minerals and vitamins are found in vegetables and fruit, but usually not in refined or processed grains, cereals, and starch, except minerals or vitamins added by the manufacturer. What does it tell us that minerals or vitamins are added to the flour?

Finding a true balance for you

Einfach-Eve / Pixabay

How do you find the optimal balance for you of protein, fat, and carbohydrates,including vitamins and minerals? Know yourself first. Experiment with different proportions, and listen to your body. For example, some people do not digest red meat well. It is not healthy for them. They do not have enough acid in their stomach to digest it well, so after eating meat, even in small portions, it putrefies and can cause these people indigestion or even stomach pains. According to blood type eating, people who do not digest meat well tend to have blood type A or AB, which is consistent with what I have observed. To gain health and lose weight, if you have blood type A, it may be healthy for you to avoid red meat completely, even if it reminds you of happy moments in your childhood. Fish, eggs, chicken, and turkey can be easy substitutes for red meat. These foods are more healthy, if you get them from suppliers that do not have confined animal farming operations. Small, local suppliers can be optimal for many.

One possible experiment to find your optimal balance of protein, lipids, and carbohydrates, if you enjoy eating nuts, is to eat two or more handfuls of nuts on an empty stomach, and then see how you feel within an hour or two. If they cause you indigestion or gas, then cut back and eat only one handful or even less. Some people can only digest two or three nuts at a time. Also be aware the some nuts may be healthy for you, while others are not, according to blood type eating. Listen to your body. If your digestion is healthy, you are healthy. You are the only one who can evaluate your digestion. 

For a discussion and details of the science of macro-nutrients (food types), click on main food types. Dr. Anne Zauderer of the Riordan Clinic describes the basics of macro-nutrients, nutrition, and metabolism in this eighty-two minute video.

While searching for the optimal balance of macro-nutrients for you, you can also apply the basic ideas of food combining, an acid-alkaline balance, and blood type eating to advantage.

From HerbsHealthHappiness comes this table of nutrients and signs of their deficiencies and excesses:


Ronnie Cummins, head of the Organic Consumers Association, states the case for organic food and natural medicine.


Nutri-Score is a labelling system developed and trademarked by the French Ministry of Health. It is not compulsory, but is used by some food manufacturers to promote sales of their products. The model looks at fruits, vegetables, protein, and fiber as positive. and sugar, saturated fats, and salt as negative.

In general, Nutri-Score  encourages healthy eating habits, at least habits that are more healthy than average. For example, YouMeal, a company in Louvain La Neuve, Belgium, uses Nutri-Score to makes their customers’ recipes healthier, substituting healthy ingredients for less healthy ingredients. 

On the other hand, this method of evaluating food does not look at the individual and the possibility that what is healthy for one person may not be healthy for another. It also does not look at the content of vitamins and minerals.


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