Monday, November 17, 2008


FOOD AWAKENINGS is Dr. Ariel's weekly radio show about live foods, superfoods, and wild foods! Join us anytime on Thursday afternoons at 4pm Pacific, or anytime on the archives. We take callers on the show if you have questions. Here is the link:

Blueberries are just one example of the many foods out there containing flavonoids. Other flavonoid rich foods include grapes, cherries, blueberries, plums and other colored fruits. They are also found in onions, kale, broccoli, greens, citrus fruits, tea and apples. There is growing evidence that these foods protect us from cancer, from the effects of aging, including the onset of Alzheimers. These amazing substances can improve the immune system, reduce cholesterol, and may help to heal or improve conditions like diabetes, macular degeneration, hypertension, strokes and much more. Join us as we speak with Dr. Nita Bishop, naturopathic physician who has studied and researched flavonoids extensively. Dr. Bishop strongly believes that food is our medicine. She has spent time in the Amazon rainforest and promotes education and research of other superfoods like maca as well as a musculoskeletal pain reliever called copaiba oil.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Stomach Acid Saver

Is your stomach acid too low? Do you get reflux? You probably have an issue with stomach acid that is too low, not too high. Does food sit in your stomach after a meal? Do you have a tendency toward constipation? Do your nails have ridges in them? Do you find that you are often tired? I have found that low stomach acid is very common in for people who consume a standard american diet and/or are under moderate to high levels of stress. Here is a simple drink to improve stomach acid:

Apple Cider Vinegar - 2 tsp.
Raw Honey - 2 tsp.
Water - 6-8 ounces


Apple Cider Vinegar appears to "prime the pump" that produces stomach acid. My experience has been that patients have improved their digestion in a very short time. Some have even found that they crave the apple cider vinegar after taking it for a few daya.

Drink this 10-15 minutes before each meal. Make larger batches if you wish, but only store them in glass, never in plastic.

Green Juice that knocks your socks off!

3 organic medium-sized apples - chopped
1 cucumber - chopped
5 stalks celery - chopped
6 leaves kale - chopped
1/2 lemon - juiced
Optional: Handful of sprouts

This juice will be mixed in the vitamix FIRST. This process allows all cell wall of each plant to be carefully broken down, which releases all of the precious nutrients that are typically locked into the cellulose wall.

Then, use a nut milk bag or a cheese cloth and strain the juice in order to separate it from the pulp. Now, add about 4 cups of purified or even distilled water to this juice.

You can compare this type of juicing to the use of a Jack La Lanne or even a Champion. I think you will find this to be a more energizing and potent juice.


Friday, October 31, 2008

How To Get Your Flax Cracker to Taste Good!

Most dehydrated crackers have the savory but not the sweet, and that will leave you feeling as if something is missing. So, check out this recipe. Also, you must add lots and lots of seasoning. The dehydrating process most likely seems to dissipate the effects of the aromatic oils of the spices. So, you have to use much more than you would imagine. I do not use any Bragg's or Nama Shoyu in my crackers due to the effects of heating soy which appears to create an MSG-like substance.

3 cups flax seeds
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup pumpkin seeds


1 medium onion
1/2 cup chopped peppers
1 Tbsp. Herb de provence
4 Tbsp. Fajita seasoning
2 Tbsp. Taco Seasoning
2 Tbsp. Garlic Herbs
2 Tbsp. Agave
1 tsp. Sea Salt

There are several steps, but once you get the
hang of it you can vary these with any seasoning,
nuts or seeds that you enjoy!

1) Soak all nuts or seeds for 24 hours.
2) Keep the flax hydrated.
3) Discard all water that was used for soaking.
4) Use 1 cup flax and a bit of the sunflower seeds
and the pumpkin seeds. Grind these in a food processor
or a Vitamix (I prefer the Vitamix).
5) Now mix everything together in the largest
bowl you've got! That's right hand mix
everything together.
6) Cover your dehydrator trays with Teflex sheets,
the new Silicon sheets, or parchment paper.
7) Use a small ice cream scooper or a dessert tablespoon
and place a small scoop of the cracker mix on the sheet.
Scoop as many on each sheet as you can, leaving room in
between to flatten them.
8) Flatten your crackers if you like them thin, or
give them a gentle press if you would like them thicker.
Option: Make larger crackers that are very thick and they
become like a piece of bread that you can place pate, sprouts
vegetables in between!
9) Remember to put love into your crackers!!!
10) Dehydrate for 10 hours (approx) and then flip
your crackers over. When flipping the crackers, remove the
parchment paper, or Teflex sheet. Place your "flipped"
cracker on the bare tray. Yes, it dehydrates better
this way.
11) Dehydrate for another 6 hours.
12) Enjoy!!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Raw Honey Lemonade - Morning Glory!

Here is a wonderful way to begin your morning! To cleanse, clear the body of mucous and waste, to improve stomach acid and digestion. It is simple. It is refreshing. It tastes good!

1 tsp. Really Raw Honey
1 lemon - put through the juicer, as in a Champion or Jack La Lanne Juicer. Remove the outer portion of the lemon, or "peel it" then run the rest of it through the juicer.
8 ounces water
3 ice cubes

Place ingredients in Vitamix (preferred) or blender. Blend for 30 seconds. Enjoy!

Benefits of your Raw Honey Lemonade:

- Alkalinize your body.
- Improve your production of stomach acid.
- True raw honey does not promote the growth of fungus and yeasts the way other sugar and processed honey tends to.
- Really raw honey contains the bee pollen and the propolis - two highly treasured superfood supplements rich in amino acids.
- Honey contains fatty acids that stimulates peristalsis, the movement in the digestive tract.
- Lemon juice is an amazing internal cleanser and helps to mineralize your body.

Beginning your day with this drink will give you energy and boost the cleansing and assimilation cycle that your body is naturally going through at this time.

For more information on the product that I use in this recipe, go to

Product review: I have tasted almost no other honey like Really Raw Honey. After all the craze about agave in the raw food world, I am now suspecting that this sweetener is not all that it has been promoted to be. There are reports that the increased production of agave has caused unscrupulous companies to add high fructose corn syrup or process in such a way that the fructose % is increased, and this is not a positive change. So, I am tending to recommend honey more and more.

When you taste Really Raw Honey, or even smell it, you will think that you died and want to Honey Heaven! I feel like this really puts to shame the honey that I consumed most of my life. There is an incredible top layer that is beautiful to look at. It is described as "crunchy bits of honeycomb, pollen and propolis that speckle the top in hues of brown, gold and amber." Remember that bee pollen and propolis are highly nutritious superfoods. They are rich in a full array of amino. They also supply a great deal of energy, and promote longevity.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Watermelon Cleanse - Updated - FREE

Hello Lovely Raw Foodists, Cleansers, and Joyous Beings!

I will be publishing my complete E-Book soon...for now, you get this information for FREE. Here is the first part of the E-Book and contains all you need to know for your 3-Day Watermelon Cleanse! More will be avaialable soon, so check back. I will go into the incredible effects that watermelon can have on your kidneys, your liver, your colon, and even your heart!!! For now...enjoy a slice for me!

Watermelon is a powerful food. Consider first the size of watermelon! How incredible that this fruit can grow from one tiny seed! It is a wonderful representation of miracles and the abundant gifts of nature. Outside it grows strong and tough. Within the tough rind is beautiful flesh that is the perfect relief to an unbearably hot day. What beautiful representation of abundance and fertility are the plentiful black seeds that play gorgeous contrast to the pink, white and green coloring within. Just meditating on the mighty watermelon brings forth the medicine of this generous fruit. And there is so, so much more. The nutrition contained within each part of this melon will amaze you. Health benefits have been described as aiding the kidneys, bladder, stomach, colon, heart, liver, skin, and so much more. A watermelon cleanse seems almost decadent, like getting to have dessert as the main meal! There is real health improvement that awaits you in interacting with this humble but mighty fruit. Let’s begin!

Cleansing with watermelon is easy to do, delicious and extremely effective. There are several ways to do a watermelon cleanse. There are some specific watermelon cleansing recipes that you can use during your cleanse. The healing benefits of each of these will be discussed. Every part from flesh, rind and seed can be consumed with some benefit. A watermelon cleanse can be used to shed a few pounds in a short time. The extreme heat of August can be released through the cleansing power of watermelon. The body will break down the waste from proteins more efficiently in the liver. The colon is cleansed by watermelon. Watermelon can act like a blood tonic and therefore be very regenerative. Here is all you need to know to enjoy one of the most enjoyable cleanses yet.

3-Day Watermelon Cleanse


I strongly recommend that before you do your watermelon cleanse, you give yourself 3 days to “pre-cleanse”. Because watermelon is one of the most cleansing foods you could eat, it is best to prepare the body to minimize detoxification reactions. An easy way to achieve this is simply by changing your diet. By reducing foods that are toxin to your system, or put stress on your system, or create toxic by-products, you will start the cleansing process immediately. You liver and kidney will have less waste to clear out and they can do more of their housekeeping tasks. If you take in more fruits and vegetables, you will also begin to clear out the colon. For this effort, you will be rewarded! Your watermelon cleanse will be much more pleasant with fewer cleansing reactions.

Here are foods to take out of your diet for the next 3 days, before you proceed to your juicy watermelon phase.

Dairy Products Milk, eggs, butter, yogurt, cheese. Anything dairy derived including cow and goat products.
Wheat Containing Foods All products containing wheat flour like bagels, muffins, pastas and breads. Wheat is a highly hybridized grain. It is also highly overeaten! Try other grains and get fewer allergies and more nutrition.
Red Meat Chicken, turkey and fish are allowable. You will get maximum cleansing benefit from a no meat diet.
Fried Foods Very stressful to the liver!
Sugar Avoid refined sugar
Artificial Sweetener Avoid any sweetener that comes in a pastel package. Joke! No aspartame (Nutrasweet), saccharin or sucralose (Splenda).
Peanuts Peanuts are a highly allergenic legume. They also contain aflatoxin.

Before bedtime on each of the evenings before you go to sleep, consume 3-4 soaked prunes. You also may want to take 2 Capsules of Dr. Ariel’s BON VOYAGE, which can be ordered online at www.bodyblisscleanse. These act as a mild laxative. They contain Cape Aloe and Wormwood in the capsules. You can take them each night of your pre-cleanse and during your watermelon cleanse for excellent results.

Increase the fiber in your diet. You can take 1 tsp. of Dr. Ariel’s BROOM in 8 ounces of water twice per day. This is available at Eat a large salad with both lunch and dinner. Eat at least 2-3 fruits each day, particularly apples. Increasing the fiber in your diet will begin to clear your colon, and will also cleanse your liver.

You may want to do an enema or a colonic at the end of each day of your watermelon cleanse. You can order an enema kit online at our website. It is not absolutely necessary to do an enema, but you will feel better at the end of the day if you clear out the toxins that your body has been busy releasing from the cells.

If you have completed your 3-Day pre-cleanse, or decided to skip it, you are now ready to begin your cleanse.

Now you are ready to begin your watermelon cleanse!

Upon rising:
6 ounces of juiced watermelon (This will require about 3-4 cups of watermelon.)
½ lemon, juiced with the watermelon

Optional: Add grated ginger, then mix in blender. You can also juice the ginger and mix with watermelon juice.To juice the watermelon. Place watermelon in blender. Blend well. Use a cheese cloth or nut milk bag to strain the watermelon. Mix lemon juice and watermelon together.

Squeeze the juice of ½ lemon into 8 ounces of water. Drink.

Watermelon smoothie.
2-3 cups chopped watermelon.
1 tsp. grated ginger.

To prepare watermelon smoothie: Place 2 cups of watermelon in blender or Vitamix. Blend for 30 seconds or until watermelon is well mixed. Drink!

3-4 cups chopped watermelon.

Enjoy slowly. Take time to chew each piece and appreciate the flavor.

Option: Add lemon or lime juice by squeezing the lemon or lime over the watermelon.



Optional: Take 3-4 ENERGIZE capsules to keep your energy strong, and blood sugar stabilized.

Watermelon Soup.

This isn’t really a “soup” per se, but something that can be mixed up and consumed as part of a watermelon fast.

4 cups watermelon, seeded and cubed
Juice of 1 lime
2 tbsp. fresh mint, chopped.
1 tbsp. fresh ginger, chopped or minced
1/8 tsp ground cardamom

Place 3 cups watermelon in food processor and blend until smoothie. Dice up the remaining 2 cups of watermelon into very small pieces and add to the puree. In a separate bowl, combine the lime juice, mint, ginger, and cardamom. Add this to the other mixture and stir well.

If possible, have your evening watermelon soup before the sun goes down. Drink 3-4 cups of herbal tea for the remainder of the evening.

Take a relaxing Epsom Salt Bath. Add about ½ cup Epsom salts to a nice warm bath. Try a few drops of lavendar in your bath. Absolutely heavenly!

Repeat your schedule for the next 2 days. Yum! Slowly transition back to your regular diet, taking a few days to introduce heavier foods like dairy products or meat, if you consume these.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Watermelon Detox - Additional Drink

I am continuing to work up some detox juice recipes for my watermelon detox, which is described in two other posts on this blog. Here is an awesome one to have during your 3-Day Watermelon Detox:

4 Cups Watermelon, Chopped.
(Remember to cut watermelon right down to the rind to get the maximum benefit of the watermelon. Also, whenever possible, get organic and seeded melons. You do not have to remove the seeds for this recipe. They are beneficial and will be blended up in your drink.)
1/2 tsp. fresh ginger, grated.
1/2 lime, juiced
8 Blackberries, organic (frozen)
Few ice cubes.

Add all ingredients to a blender or my preference, a Vitamix. Blend for 30-60 seconds. Enjoy this cleansing and refreshing drink.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Water Alkalinizers - The Latest in Water Purification

Oh, whoa is we. We are living in a conundrum of tremendous proportions. How do we get good water???? If we drink tap water...OK, get real, we all know that isn't an option. There is the toxicity of the chlorine and other contaminants and heavy metals. If we buy bottled water, we drink in the plastics from the bottles and we overload landfills with the bottles themselves. On top of all of that, the water from any of these sources may have an acidic pH. When the pH of the water is acidic, it can be harmful to your health. Most people are already too acidic as a result of eating processed foods, too much meat, alcohol, coffee or other foods or drinks that deplete the minerals in the body.

Let's say a person really has a week where they just go crazy with fast foods. On top of that, they have coffee in the morning and soda pop in the afternoon. As a result, the pH of their system becomes more acidic. The pH of our body, specifically our blood is naturally more alkaline (ph of about 7.4). The human body cannot survive in an acid environment. The enzymes that make the body work simply do not function at an acid pH. Since we are hardwired for survival, if we foolishly fill our bodies with these acid forming substances, the body fights back. It will use calcium and magnesium stored in the body as a way to buffer the acid. Think of taking a good ol' alka seltzer to buffer an acid stomach. The biochemistry is similar to that. So, what would happen if you were constantly buffering with calcium from your body? Perhaps osteoporosis? Exactly. Acid forming foods are a much more likely culprit for the leaching of calcium from the bones than a dairy deficiency in the American diet.

Back to the water situation. It turns out that much of the water, be it tap water or even bottled water has a slightly acidic pH. This is really counter to what we want to do in order to alkalinize the body. Think of alkalinization as a method of purifying or detoxifying the body. So, the latest and the greatest in water purfication systems these days is WATER ALKALINIZERS! They add calcium and magnesium to the water making it better absorbed by the body.

The type of water alkalinizer that I recommend is the Akai Ionizer Plus from High Tech Health.

Here are the reasons that I like this system so much:

- It has a carbon filter to remove chlorine and other chemicals such as heavy metals

- It has an ultraviolet light to destroy bacteria and viruses in the water.

- It has the system that makes the water more alkaline. It does this through electrolysis. From High Tech Health:

"Electrolysis is the process that concentrates the minerals thus making the water more alkaline. It accomplishes this by passing the water between two electrodes, one with a positive electric charge, the other with a negative electric charge. The minerals in the water then become reduced to their ionic form. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium and potassium have a positive electric charge and are attracted to the negatively charged electrode. This water, alkaline in nature, is then separated from the water attracted to the positively charged electrode."

The effect of drinking this type of water is profound. The cells may be better able to receive nutrition and oxygenation as a result.

In summary, what an alkalinizer may do for you:

- Improve the pH of the body, making it more alkaline, a desirable goal.
- Help to oxygenate the body better.
- Improve the functioning of antioxidants like Vitamin C in your water.
- Aid in the elimination of toxins from the body each day.
- Turn minerals into their ionic form for better use in the body.

Now that I have been using the Ionizer Plus, I definitely would not want to be without an alkalinizer in my home. There are other brands out there, and you can research them all. I found this one to be superior in quality and very competitively priced. I also did not find that the other alkalinizers on the market had the carbon filtration and the ultraviolet purfication feature. Check it out for yourself at

You can use the acidic water that comes from the unit as a wonderful astrigent for your skin! I have been using this every day now and it works wonderfully as a facial rinse.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Angel's Health Food Institute

Are you interested in learning more about live foods? Would you like to immerse yourself in this education away from your busy life and the stresses that go with it? Would you be interested in spending time on 20 acres of beautiful land in the Pacific Northwest? If you answered must check out Angel's Health Food Institute in Gold Hill, Oregon.

Peggy McDonnell and Ken Brown are the founders of the institute. They are incredibly dedicated to the upliftment and education of participants. The program is thorough with lots of time for rest and reflection. This is an excellent place to learn how to transform your health, maintain your wellness, and have a break from your everyday life in order to take stock of the priorites.

The first two weeks covers the basics of why a living foods diet is superior for optimal health. The last week includes a chef certification program with lots and lots of hands-on work. The food was beyond delicious. AHFI uses much of the food they grown themselves in their garden and greenhouse. They use ocean water to mineralize the fruits, vegetables and wheatgrass. The effect of the ocean water is profound. The wheatgrass is so sweet! The vegetables are absolutely gorgeous and so colorful.

Peggy and Ken and all of the staff at AHFI are so generous with their time and their knowledge. I hope you get the chance to check out AHFI or go their for an extended stay to study the living food lifestyle. It will definitely be worth every moment that you are there. I will keep you posted about upcoming programs and events going on there, or check them out at

Friday, April 25, 2008

Wheatgrass & B17

Check out Edward Griffin's World Without Cancer. This is a stunning video with powerful information about nitrilosides in food (aka B17) and their ability to prevent cancer, and possibly help the person who already has cancer. My interest in this video is because wheatgrass contains Vitamin B17! The vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll and so much more that is contained in wheatgrass makes it truly a gift from the angels. Yes, the humble grass. In nature, perhaps what appears most gentle is actually what contains the most strength. Grasses are so filled with nourishment and the ability to oxygenate, cleanse and protect humans and animals that one can only be in awe of these unexpected qualities. Why doesn't every oncology ward have trays of wheatgrass to juice? The information is known. There is excellent research as discussed by Edward Griffin and others.

I will be doing several other posts about the nutrition of wheatgrass. Along with sprouts, the algaes like spirulina and blue green algae, wheatgrass is among the elite in terms of powerful nutrition for your body. It is worth every second that you take to juice it.

I do not know how Dr. Ann Wigmore was able to intuit and discover so much information about Wheatgrass. In The Wheatgrass Book, written over 15 years ago, she mentioned the laetrile as well as a vast array of enzymes including Superoxide Dismutase as well as Absisic Acid, which also seems to have anti-cancer qualities, and before reading Dr. Ann's book I had never heard of. It was never mentioned in any nutrition book that I have come across, and no one in naturopathic school ever talked about it either.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Rejuvelac Triumph!

After many years of trying to get the Rejuvelac to be something besides water and grains that sat out on your counter for 3 or more days...success! This Rejuvelac, which is made from sprouted Barley grains, is tart, delicious, and has a lemonade-like taste. Rejuvelac is a fermented drink, made from your choice of grains (typically Soft Wheat Berries, Rye, Barley and others.). It is rich in enzymes, probiotics (not from supplements, and not from a dairy source, wooohoooo!), as well as B-Vitamins.

Ann Wigmore was the inventor of Rejuvelac. She had a very upset digestive system after self-testing foods that had been irradiated! The story goes that she simply asked Spirit...what do I do for this? She felt guided to use grains, sprout them and ferment them. She recovered quickly after drinking her newly created Rejuvelac.

I know that since Gabriel Cousens' Book Rainbow Green Live Food Cuisine was published, many have had concerns about the mold in grains. One way to remedy this is to soak grains in Vitamin C powder before using them in your Rejuvelac. Soaking for 15-30 minutes is sufficient. Then rinse and begin your sprouting and fermenting.

How absolutely wonderful to consume enzymes, probiotics and B-Vitamins that do not come from synthetic supplements! It is pretty sweet to create no waste except for compost from your beautiful sprouted grains.

How to make Delish Rejuvelac:

Choose Soft Wheat Berries, Rye or Barley, preferably organic.
(Two good resources for bulk grains and seeds - Hippocrates Health Institute, and Optimum Health Institute)
Use 1/2 cup of one of these grains.
6-7 cups of spring water or purified water

This will give you about 2 quarts of Rejuvelac

Soak Grain for 10-12 hours.
Rinse 2-3X daily
Sprout Grain for 3 Days in Sprout Bag.
Here is the true secret to making great Rejuvelac. My sincere thanks to Steve Meyerowtiz and his excellent book "Sproutman's Kitchen Garden Cookbook".
Place the sprouts in a larger glass jar, like a mason jar and fill to the top with water.
Your future rejuvelac needs to now just sit and wait. Place the jar on a countertop, cover with your sprout bag ONLY.
In 3 days, you will have some amazing Rejuvelac. Enjoy!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Live Food Puppy: New Blog

Do you eat a raw food diet? What about your pet? As I searched for information about raw diets for pets, not all of them meshed with my education in the "human live food movement". My dog does eat raw meat. However, he also consumes wheatgrass, blue-green algae, goji berries, rejuvelac, raw grains and much more. We need a forum to discuss and promote this hybrid raw diet for dogs. Too many dogs are suffering from the terrible degenerative conditions that can be attributed to the unnatural foods available in the typical supermarket, pet store, and even the health food store or "holistic" pet store. Check out and please submit any information or stories you would like to share.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Wondering about Soy

This is a piece that I did a while back for Herbivore magazine about the ongoing soy controversy. Those who have done my 14-Day Cleansing Program often ask about "to soy or not to soy" and so I thought it would be helpful to post this article on the blog.

I recently read an article in Mothering magazine that had some really negative things to say about soy and soy formula. I also have seen some web sites on line that say soy could be harmful. Is there any truth to any of this? - P.A., Seattle, Washington

What in the world is up with soy these days? For the past twenty or thirty years soy has been the darling of the health food world. Who could possibly say anything bad about soy? Well, the Weston Price Foundation, the Gerson Institute, and now Kaayla Daniel, PhD, CCN, to name a few. Daniel's new book is titled "The Whole Soy Story: The Dark Side of America's Favorite Health Food." Thinking about the dark side of soy is like thinking about the dark side of Gandhi...or Mother Teresa. C'mon. It's crazy talk! Or is it?

The strange and unnatural things that are done to soy may be your last connection to pop food culture. Not Dogs and breakfast sausage are special to you, I know. And what the hell are you supposed to put in your coffee besides soymilk? Certainly not watery rice milk! Okay. Calm down and think this soy controversy through.

Let's review some reasons we turned to soy in the first place:

• It results in lower cholesterol levels than consuming meat, and as a result prob- ably contributes to reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
• It provides a high protein alternative for vegetarians and vegans.
• Several studies have supported the posi- tive effect on soy for menopausal symp- toms including hot flashes.
• Studies show soy may help to improve bone density in post-menopausal women.
• Soy consumption could facilitate weight loss because of its high protein, low fat content.
• Some studies have shown that soy is helpful in controlling blood sugar levels, again because it is a high protein, low carbohydrate food.

So, soy is irrefutably a superfood, right? Well, not so fast. For many a vegetarian or vegan, soy has become a major staple in the diet. Aren't there some days you look back and realize you have consumed it for breakfast, lunch and dinner...oh, and maybe it was even in the soy ice cream or vegan dessert that you had? The potential problems of soy are more likely to occur when the consumption is daily, in relatively large quantities, and over a long period of time.

So, now that we have seen the charming list of some soy virtues, let's take a look at the negative press that soy has been receiving recently. I have read much of this information on the internet and very little is actually referenced for source. I did some Medline searches on each of these topics and found some to be substantiated by a few studies, which are referenced here. Ultimately, you will have to make your own decision about whether soy belongs in your diet, and if so, how much.

Soy contains a chemical called phytic acid. This chemical, which is not removed in the cooking process, could reduce the absorption of some minerals. These include calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc. There are several studies that seem to confirm reduced mineral absorption of iron and zinc. They don't indicate the amounts of soy necessary to do this, or exactly how much absorption it would affect.1, 2

Soy contains protease inhibitors. Proteases are enzymes that digest proteins. If soy does contain protease inhibitors, then it could possibly interfere with the proper digestion and assimilation of protein. Again, there is some research that confirms the existence of these enzyme inhibitors. What it doesn't indicate is how long these enzyme inhibitors stay active, or what the effects on health might ultimately be.3

To complicate matters further, an article in Circulation, the journal reporting on cardiovascular health, states that both phytic acid and the trypsin (a type of protease) inhibitor may be important mechanisms of action in lowering LDL cholesterol.4 This seems to be a stretch to believe, but it is referenced as having support. My first guess about why consuming soy helps to reduce the "bad" form of cholesterol is that it has as much to do with what you are not eating with as what you are eating. If you are consuming more soy, then it is likely you are substituting that for more saturated fat-containing foods. This change alone would help to lower serum cholesterol.

Soy contains phytoestrogens. While some studies indicate that it is the phytoestrogens that have the protective effect in cancers, other studies are less favorable. The problem may be that these phytoestrogens may bind to estrogen receptors in the body, causing negative effects, just as exogenous estrogens from synthetic hormone replacement therapy may cause harm. This may, then, actually increase the risk of breast or uterine cancer. The literature is mixed, with studies supporting both sides of the argument.

The American Cancer Society recommends that cancer survivors consume a moderate amount of soy. For example, some tofu in a stir-fry a few times a week may be harmless, but they should consider avoiding soy supplements in capsules. This also has to do with a study that concluded that the more processed forms of soy, like isoflavones, actually stimulated breast tumor growth in animals, while the consumption of soy did not.

Soy is a goitrogen. A goitrogen is a kind of food that suppresses the functioning of the thyroid gland.5, 6 The literature here is also mixed. The information comes from studies done on animals and it says that the studies reduced the function of the thyroid, but not enough to cause significant changes in blood values like TSH. TSH is a measure of thyroid function, and the major medical determinant as to whether a person is hypothyroid.

Soy also may be implicated in higher incidences of autoimmune disease in infants who consume soy formula.7 There is much controversy also about the safety of soy formula in general. One thing that emerges again and again is that the concentrate forms of soy (like isoflavones) have an estrogenic affect, which could potentially affect men or women. None of these ideas has had adequate research on humans.

A recent article in the Journal of Nutrition states that based on a review of the current information available about soy, that soy formula is safe. This article, which claims to review the "current evidence" available also seems to have been sponsored by a major manufacturer of soy formula.8 There's a surprise!

After reviewing the research in preparation for this article, I have to admit I am unclear as to what conclusion to draw. It seems ridiculous to imagine banning all soy from the diet, or to think about soy as being as harmful as fried food or barbecued meat. On the other hand, the "more is always better" mentality that we have in our culture doesn't seem to serve us when considering soy either. The answer, then, seems to be moderation. Here are some thoughts about the soy issue, based on some of the basic principles of natural medicine:

Soy is a highly processed food. It goes through quite a bit of heating. In the processing of tofu, the soybeans are heated to a high temperature and go through a solvent extraction process to remove the oils. This brings up another issue. In the course of processing, the naturally occurring essential fatty acids and carbohydrate portion of the soybean are removed. Soybeans themselves are also incredibly difficult to digest, probably because of the naturally occurring trypsin inhibitor. There are two types that can be digested: the black soy bean and the type which is still in the pod, also known as edamame (I love the tag line I saw recently shaping the image of this type of soy. It read, "Try edamame- the gay man's peanut." Very creative!)

The following is the process for making commercial soymilk. To remove the naturally occurring trypsin (protease inhibitor), the beans are first soaked in an alkaline solution, and then heated to 115 degrees. This denatures (destroys) the proteins. They are further processed to produce the pretty milk we all enjoy from those aseptic containers.

Soy is also one of the top food allergens. It ranks right up there with dairy, wheat, egg, peanuts, and citrus. It is typically included on any food allergy test panel that tests for the IgG immune system reaction in the blood. This reaction may be asymptomatic, causing chronic inflammation in the body. It may also cause symptoms like digestive distress. Some people eat soy for several years, and then notice that they are starting to react to it.

In fact, the top food allergens are those that people consume again and again, day in and day out. The body loves variety. The best way to protect yourself from the negative effects of any food would be to add variety to your diet. Read the labels! In the quest to find prepared palatable foods for vegetarians, I have seen many foods that contain some variation on soy, even when you wouldn't have expected to find any in the product.

Definitely avoid any soy product that does not specifically indicate that it is a non-GM (genetically modified) product. Food producers are not required to disclose if they use GM soy. However, most manufacturers want to let you know if they don't use GM soy, so look for that disclosure. Much of the soy now being produced in the United States is GM soy. Soy is in many products that the non-veggie population consumes as well. Remember Hamburger Helper? It's Texturized Vegetable Protein that helps to "extend the meat".

I would recommend considering moderate soy consumption. If you eat tofu or soy a few times per week, or one time per day, that seems reasonable. If you, however, have come to depend on soy as your main source of protein, then I suggest that you begin to consider some alternatives. I recommend raw nuts and seeds as at least one other alternative source of protein for vegans. These can be made into great milks, "mock tuna" or other faux dairy or meat dishes (e-mail Dr. Ariel at Herbivore for recipes). They contain protein as well as essential fatty acids. These EFA's have been removed from many soy derivatives as a result of the processing.

1 Hurrell RF, Juillerat MA, Reddy MB, Lynch SR, Dassenko SA, Cook JD. "Soy protein, phytate, and iron absorption in humans." Am J Clin Nutr. 1992 Sep;56(3):573-8.

2 Egli I, Davidsson L, Zeder C, Walczyk T, Hurrell R. "Dephytinization of a complementary food based on wheat and soy increases zinc, but not copper, apparent absorption in adults." J Nutr. 2004 May;134(5):1077-80.
3 Miyagi Y, Shinjo S, Nishida R, Miyagi C, Takamatsu, Yamamoto T, Yamamoto S.," Trypsin inhibitor activity in commercial soybean products in Japan." J Nutr Sci Vitaminol 1997 Oct:43(5):575-80

4 "AHA Science Advisory: Soy protein and cardiovascular disease: A statement for healthcare professionals from the Nutrition Committee of the AHA." Circulation. 2000 Nov 14;102(20):2555-9.

5 Divi RL, Chang HC, Doerge DR. "Anti-thyroid isoflavones from soybean: isolation, characterization, and mechanisms of action." Biochem Pharmacol. 1997 Nov 15;54(10):1087-96.

6 Doerge DR, Sheehan DM. "Goitrogenic and estrogenic activity of soy isoflavones."
Environ Health Perspect. 2002 Jun;110 Suppl 3:349-53.

7 Fort P, Moses N, Fasano M, Goldberg T, Lifshitz F. "Breast and soy-formula feedings in early infancy and the prevalence of autoimmune thyroid disease in children."J American Coll Nutr, 1990 Apr; 9(2):164-7

8 Merritt RJ, Jenks BH. "Safety of soy-based infant formulas containing isoflavones: the clinical evidence."
J Nutr. 2004 May;134(5):1220S-1224S.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

What a bodybuilder eats

From a live plant-based enzyme rich philosophy, this is one of the most frightening videos I have seen. This is a great way to gain muscle and send a person to an early grave. The stress on the kidneys alone is staggering, of course, with 300-500 mg of protein taken in each day. Do people really still train this way? The depletion of enzymes, precious and limited enzymes is also nearly unbelievable. It would be very interesting to do a pH analysis of the blood and saliva to see how acidic this diet makes someone. The one upside: 3-4 pounds of broccoli consumed every few days. The rest of the diet:

Large portion of steak, 3X each week. About 8 or so chicken breasts per day, and many eggs (whites only, that makes it better, right). My goodness, the impact on the planet from one person doing this to themselves. Amazing!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Diving Into the Mystery

I have been thinking much about why live food is so significant, not just that it is healthy and this can actually be backed up now by much research but why consuming live food is actually significant, important to us in other ways. Here is part of it. The consumption of food, our choice of food, can take us to the highest high or the lowest low. My meditation teacher once spoke of heaven and hell as taking place right in the body. We can eat foods that elevate us, uplift us, even give us a sublime experience of bliss. We can consume foods that make us depressed or that deplete us or take us toward illness. In a way, our diet itself can a path to enlightenment, to self-awareness.

I was moved by Michael Pollan's observation in the Omnivore's Dilemma that the act of eating causes us to interact with nature at least 3 times each day. That really struck me because we have at times gotten so very far away from nature. And yet, to truly survive, we must have that connection not once a month or once a week, but 3 times or more each day.

The mystery I wanted to talk about is the food world itself. Or maybe I should say, the plant world. I think that eating live food is valuable because we are more inclined to contemplate the mystery of food itself. For example, let's look at the mighty watermelon. Watermelon has an outrageous and surprising array of nutrition. It has tryptophan and glutathione, 2 amazing amino acids. It is rich in minerals, it is a wonderful kidney and colon cleanser. But we can go deeper. Look at the beautiful shape of the watermelon. Round or oval, it is full, abundant, actually an amazing feat of growth! The little seed, growing to a size thousands times larger, with this tough protective shell, and this sweet delicious fruit inside. Victoras Kulvinskas said in Survival in the 21st Century that fruit is the only karma-free food that we can consume. In other words, nothing had to die for us to fill our bellies for that meal. Not true with lettuce, spinach, kale, etc. And finally, what about the seeds? We receive the resonance, the energy signature of the plant as well as all of the nutrition. We are receiving a beautiful energy of abundance, fertility, creativity! That is why I always recommend SEEDED watermelons! What a terrible affront on nature to genetically modify fruits to not bear seeds!!! We do this so that we do not have to be bothered spitting out the seeds? arrrrggghhhh! Our entire purpose in being the fruit eaters on the planet is to consume the fruit with the seeds, recycle them out the back end and keep the planet fruit filled forever!

But seriously...our connection with food, real food, live food, takes us deeper into a connection with ourselves. We can have a deeply spiritual relationship with the food we are consuming. We can even experience ecstasy in recognition of the mystery that is contained in each fruit, in each vegetable, nut, seed, herb and more. We receive this both intellectually in knowing but also within ourselves in the appreciation, observation and even assimilation of live foods. The plant world has so much to teach us! How exciting!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Lemon Goji Berry Dressing

Check out a new recipe from our Rejuvenation Kitchen:

1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 Tbsp. Goji Berries
1 tsp. Agave
1-2 cloves of garlic
1/4 tsp. sea salt
dash of cayenne

Goji Berries are an amazing superfood. They are very high in vitamin C, also contain iron as well as 18 amino acids. They have high antioxidant value as well. They mix up nicely when blended and give this dressing a beautiful color.

Place in Vitamix, blender or Magic Bullet. This is a small serving size, so feel free to double or triple this!


Do you take your soy unleaded? Techron? Premium?

If your soy is not marked 100% USDA Organic, you may be getting more than you bargained for. I have written about various soy controversies before. Putting that argument aside for the moment, let's remember that producing soy is actually big agribusiness. The largest producers of soy are Dupont, the producer of the lovely teflon pan (and where is the Teflon that used to be where the scratches are in the pan?), ADM (supermarket to the world and global oppressor), and Cargill (have you seen the documentary King Corn? See it!).

So, here is the deal. Soybeans are pressed en masse with Hexane, an industrial solvent that is a by-product of gasoline. The 3 agribusinesses mentioned are the largest producers of hexane-processed soy protein isolate to "natural food" brands offering soy bars and protein powders. Can you imagine all the menopausal women taking soy isoflavones in capsule form? If these are not made from USDA ORGANIC soy, then these women may be getting gas from the beans, but of a different variety indeed. All joking aside, hexane is a major greenhouse gas that contributes to "climate change."

Be careful! If the product says that it is "made with organic soy" or "NON-GMO" SOY, it may still include non-organic soy protein isolates that are processed with hexane!

I have long recommended that you vary your protein intake. If you are cooked food vegan, don't depend on soy for all your protein needs. Hemp is a great alternative. I have amazing organic hemp seeds available at (click the link on the upper right hand at the site for my store)


Monday, March 17, 2008

Milk Breakdown

During the first week of my 14-Day Total Body Cleansing Program, I explain that the during the cleanse, it is important to avoid dairy products of any kind. Of course, this includes milk and milk-products. Many participants want to know "so what's so wrong with a little milk? What about cottage cheese? Just a dollop of yogurt...please? It is absolutely vital to understand that if milk at one time, raw, organic in pristine environmental conditions, had some value...that small nutritional benefit is now far outweighed by the health risks that come with a food filled with antibiotics, hormones, blood, pus, bacteria, viruses, dioxin. See below for every reason to avoid milk, and all the nutritional information you need to get truly bioavailable protein and calcium in a much safer form for good health!

Why avoid milk? This entry explores some of the concepts about milk. Got pus? Got bovine leukemia? Got yuck?

To begin to discuss the concept of whether we should consume milk or not, we have to ask ourselves. Why do I consume milk? Why do I want to continue consuming milk? Do I need milk to survive.

What is in American Milk?
“One cup of wholesome milk cannot contain more than 50 million pus cels. That’s 200 million pus cells per quart (liter)…A dairy cow filters 10,000 quarts of blood through her udder each day and uses dead white blood cells to manufacture her milk. These dead cells are pus cells. Dairy scientists are aware that when one quart of milk is tainted with 400 million or more pus cells, some 35% of the milking cows in the herd are infected with mastitis. Udders bleed, discharges, including bacteria and blood drip into the milk.” From the website,

They go on to describe the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance:
“Occasional milkborne outbreaks still occur, emphasizing the need for continued vigilance at every stage of production, processing and pasteurization and distribution of milk and milk products.”
“Milk has the potential to serve as a vehicle of disease and has, in the past, been associated with disease outbreaks of major proportions.”

Do we need milk to get calcium?If not milk, then what?

“How many people hear the real protein story, which reveals that the average person living in a modern society consumes enough excess protein every day to cause a mineral imbalance? Protein actually washes calcium from the body into the kidney system, leaving calcium-deficient bones and an increased risk of kidney stones.” John McDougall

“Calcium deficiency of dietary origin is a myth and is virtually unknown in humans, even though most people in the world do not consume any milk after weaning. The whole truth is that dairy foods are the most harmful of the traditional four food groups. They are high in fat, protein, and environmental contaminants and deficient in fiber and carbohydrates. What carbohydrates they do have are poorly digested by most adults and results in diarrhea, gas and stomach cramps. Dairy products are also the leading source of food allergy, causing a wide range of problems from headaches to bed wetting, stuffy nose and even death.” John McDougall

“The consumption of dairy products has been found by researchers to be a leading caus of atherosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes...the high fat of dairy products have been implicated as the culprit in contributing heavily to heart attacks, strokes, and atherosclerosis. The high-fat dairy products are also those that are most likely to contain unsafe levels of environmental contaminants including pesticide residues and dangerous radioactive substances.” John Robbins

“The modern-day Bessie is bred, fed, medicated, inseminated, and manipulated for a single purpose-maximum milk production at a minimum cost. One result of these unnatural conditions is that the modern dairy cow is highly prone to stress and disease.” John Robbins

“The official testing method sanctioned by the FDA and used by most states to screen milk for drugs, called the BS (Bacillus sterothermophilus disc assay is unable to detect residues from most of the medications used in the dairy products today.” John Robbins, Diet for a New Planet

“Four different surveys of our milk supply were conducted by independent researchers between 1987 and 1989. The results were not comforting unless you like antibiotics and other veterinary drugs in your dairy products. The studies found between 63 - 86% of the milk samples to contain sulfa drugs, tetracyclines, and other antibiotics.” One of the sulfa drugs, sulfamethazine is a suspected human carcinongen.” John Robbins, Diet for a New Planet

So what if there is bacteria in the milk. It’s pasteurized, right? “The largest outbreak of salmonella poisoning ever recorded in the United States came from pasteurized milk.” (Robbins) 200,000 people in 6 states were suspected of having been infected with salmonellosis! Also, do you really want to consume a product composed of sterilized (pasteurized) pus, bacteria, viruses, and more?

The FDA currently tests 5 milk samples per week (of all the milk processed) for evidence of drug residues.


“I believe that food has the most powerful influence on our overall health. What we do each day, what we allow into our bodies, either shapes the most exquisite state of wellness we can achieve or takes us further into pain, suffering and the possibility of a chronic illness. We can learn to make informed choices that bring health to our body. A diet that supports wellness, enlightened consciousness, bliss and the healing of our planet is a combination of vegan foods, live vegan foods, Superfoods and Wild Foods. I will discuss each of these in future entries. I hope to bring to you information and resources so that you can achieve the most excellent state of wellness!”
- Dr. Ariel

SuperGreens Morning Smoothie

Here is a morning greens beverage that I enjoy:

1 heaping teaspoon Spirulina Powder
1 heaping teaspoon Wheatgrass/Barleygrass Powder
3-4 small apples, juiced in Jack La Lanne Juicer, the Juicer I recommend in my 14 Day Cleansing Programs.
Small piece of ginger, juiced.

I juice the ginger and apples, then mix everything in my Vitamix with a couple of ice cubes. Great way to start the day.

Why don't I start my day with a traditional Victoria Boutenko Green Smoothie? The beginning of the day is a time to be very gentle on digestion. The time for assimilation and detoxification is from 4am - 12pm. So, the morning time is a good time to rest the digestive system. The pure juice and greens powder are easier to digest than all the pulp and fiber in a traditional Green Smoothie. I have also found that sometimes the kale or spinach with a mango or other fruit personally spikes my blood sugar too high in the morning. I actually do better with a Green Smoothie in the 3-4pm time, when I need a snack and energy lift.

I also want to mention that that calcium value of wheatgrass, barleygrass and spirulina may do more for building bones than kale, collards or chard. That is only because these also contain oxalic acid. This decreases the absorption of calcium. Additionally, David Wolfe recently visited Portland and reminded us of something very important about greens powders. The simple is beautiful: SURFACE AREA. Yes, think about the surface area of spirulina that can be exposed to our digestive system. This means that we are more likely to absorb and use the nutrients than in kale or collards. It is true, though, that making kale or similar greens in a Vitamix does break them down signficantly, bu the powders will prevail here.

The ginger balances nicely against the coolness of the greens. It also helps to increase the digestion of the greens. Stomach acid needs to be strong to properly digest greens. Interestingly, the chlorophyll in the greens promotes strong stomach acid.