A few years ago, I suffered from ulcerative colitis, about which I’ve mentioned several times previously in my blog. As part of my healing, I eliminated several foods, including cutting way back on fruits. Why? If you listen to the media and the many doctors who promote eating more fruit, then why would I cut back? For me, it was simple. I was trying to eliminate much of the sugar in my diet, and fruits contain a lot of sugar. If you happen to have an overgrowth of yeast, like I did, and which frequently happens after antibiotic use, you can destroy many of the good intestinal bacteria necessary for proper gut health. The sugar in fruit is on of yeasts favorite desserts. While I was not on antibiotics per say, they sneak into our diets hidden from us. Many of the same antibiotics prescribed to humans are also given to livestock by the food industry, and these will kill your good bacteria. Add to this the number of antibiotics the food industry adds to any processed food that comes in a box, jar, bag, tube or bottle. Many products contain chemicals added to food during processing to kill any bacteria or funguses that would shorten a product’s shelf life-the industry calls them preservatives, but in essence they are antibiotics. I heard a doctor once say that “the longer the shelf life of what you’re eating, the shorter your shelf life yours will be.” One fruit that I did not eliminate was avocado (yes, it’s a fruit). Avocados are full of health benefits. Avocados have 22.5 grams of fat that a medium avocado has, more than two-thirds is heart-healthy mono saturated fat. They also have a suer potassium-to-sodium ratio, another great cardiovascular benefit. They also contain 10g of fiber (good for the gut) and 3g of protein, and are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and other vital nutrients. New research shows they may even play a role in lowering cholesterol. Plus, they’re delicious!

A few weeks ago I wrote about Debra (see the 4/26 blog). We met again last week. While she said she was feeling better overall, with a little less fatigue, she still had occasional loose stools, and was having 4 to 5 bowel movements a day. We went over her food journal, and I noticed that 1) she was eating a lot of fruit, and 2) she was eating all food groups (proteins, fats, and carbs) together. For better digestion, I suggested she follow these basic rules when combining food (courtesy of Dr. Alejandro Junger): pair vegetables and greens with animal protein, pair vegetables and greens with vegetable protein (lentils), and don’t pair animal protein and vegetable protein. Also, if she did eat a piece of fruit, eat it alone, at least 20 minutes before eating vegetables or protein. Alone, fruit will digest quickly and exit the stomach within 20 minutes. When fruit is combined with other foods, it sits in the stomach and ferments, and can cause gas, bloating, etc. I also suggested eliminating corn, potatoes, soy, rice, processed sugar, alcohol, and caffeine. I told Debra that she may not have to avoid them forever, just for a couple of weeks until symptoms subside, then we could start adding them back, one by one, to see how she tolerates them. I recommended eating fermented foods like kimchi and sauerkraut daily to increase good bacteria, and offered her a book that really helped me; Clean Gut, by Dr Alejandro Junger. We agreed to meet again in a month.

I found this little health tip in Dr Whitaker’s Health & Healing, June 2015. For muscle cramps, try a shot of pickle juice. It has 20 times more sodium and eight times more potassium than electrolyte drinks. Weekend warriors and professional athletes alike swear by this remedy.

Stay well, John R Blilie, M.S.