Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Gut Problems Got You Down? Try the Patented "Oat, Blueberry, Fiber Smoothie!"


The "invention" that Dr. Heiman patented was a blend of oats, blueberries, and inulin that he foresees
A smoothie inspired by the invention, 2-3 times per day. Each smoothie consisting of:
  • 2-4 TBS uncooked oat bran (example link)
  • 1.5 cups of  fresh blueberries
  • 1-2 TBS of inulin powder or raw potato starch
Mix with a liquid of choice.
Add some (or all) of the following, if you like:
  • Honey
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Flax/Chia/Hemp Seeds
  • Green Banana
  • Colorful Veggies

Tim

213 comments:

  1. Awesome post! Written just right, I think. I'd love to know how people do on this.

    I think it might be important to mention consistency. In one case study, the diarrhea was cured within 2 days. The subject followed the patented approach for 8 weeks with no recurrence, and subsequently stopped. The diarrhea returned within 2 days. IIRC, th diarrhea then went away again upon resuming treatment.

    For point of reference, I've never missed 2 days in a row of my fiber drinks over more than 1.5 years.

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  2. Do you think it is possible that after a period of time the gut could be healed enough to maintain it's newly found level of health and stability with just normal eating? That it could reach a new normal without having to add the same level of supplemented fibers forever? Maybe it is wishful thinking, but I would like to hope that it is possible.

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    1. I can't say for sure as I've never tried. But my gut feeling (ha, ha, ha) is that the answer is no. The fibers are now part of me. I miss them when I skip them. I might be able to go a week or something, but I don't want to. I don't even want to try. Normal eating is what I now do, from my perspective. I know others might feel differently, but...

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    2. I think it is possible that once a gut is healed, many off-limits foods will now be tolerable. Case in point, chili always gave me heartburn. Now I can eat huge bowls, same recipe. Also. Pears. Made me have the WORST smelly, sulfurous 'toots' you could imagine, there is even a website devoted to this phenomenon: http://www.thefartingpear.com/index.php/foodsearch

      I mentioned this on Paul Jaminet's PHD blog, and he quickly diagnosed me as a "fructose malabsorber," and I should strictly avoid fructose.

      Now...I can eat 10 pears if I like. I have not had heartburn or those rank gas episodes I used to have.

      At this point, I don;t want to eat any other way. I have gone a few days without much fiber while traveling, and survived it. Eating out several days in restaurants makes me feel like crap, though. So much bad oil and artificial flavors, unreal, no matter how much fiber I eat.

      This smoothie idea here. If it helps people, they can surely transition away from these intense smoothies and just adopt good fiber habits.

      I have a feeling, that back in the day when I was having heartburn from chili and farting with pears, this smoothie would not have helped. Back the I was drinking lots, exercising none, and (over)eating SAD. Somewhere, there has to be balance.

      But if someone has adopted great eating habits and still has poor digestion, this smoothie might just tip the balance.

      Delete
    3. "At this point, I don't want to eat any other way." This is a perfect, eloquent statement of what I wanted to say.

      Delete
  3. I'm going to give this a try, since I'm one of those that has had mixed results with RPS. I haven't had a consistent intake of beta-glucans in my diet, so this will be interesting.

    Cheryl

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    1. Most of the times I eat oatmeal, I figure that is my fiber for the day, and don't really seek any more. Maybe it is a combo that will prove effective for people as the patent inventor found.

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  4. This post came just in time, as I was formulating my next experiment! As requested, here is the entire proposed experiment.

    Experiment theory:
    - Eating staple foods and a variety of fibers consistently allows the gut to adapt to those foods, building a strong and diverse flora.
    - Polyphenols may help modulate the gut microbiota for the better
    - Exercise may do the same
    - Probiotics and dirt may provide needed genes for the gut flora

    Actions

    * I'm going to go mostly all-in on the staple foods / semi-monotonous diet. It makes intuitive sense to me, and fits with what humans did pre-industry (you ate what grew around you). Having staple foods eaten in most meals, but allowing pretty much anything reasonable on the side, allows both stability and diversity. So, after some thought, I decided to try making a base blend of pinto beans, cabbage, onions, garlic, chicken stock, salt, and pepper. This concoction will form the base of most of my home meals (generally breakfast and dinner). It's easy to make, tasted delicious to me, and has plenty of fiber. Beans, in particular, prominently feature in the diets of all blue zone cultures. For breakfast I'll probably just reheat a bit up and eat it by itself. For dinner, I'll add variety by eating other things with the base -- whatever my body seems to be craving at the time (e.g. steak, mashed potatoes, tortillas). The other meal (lunch) will probably be consistent as well, though separate -- I'll probably eat a salad, as I have access to a salad bar during lunch, and some soup.

    * I'll drink a smoothie, twice a day, consisting of kefir, blueberries, inulin, oat bran, and potato starch.

    * For snacks, I'll add polyphenols and additional all-around goodness with the following: coffee, green tea, dark chocolate, almonds, or brazil nuts.

    * I'll attempt to walk for 30+ minutes on most days.

    * The only probiotic I'm planning on taking is prescript-assist. The kefir smoothie will provide some other bacteria, and I'll try to get my hands dirty regularly.

    That's probably too much food. If I'm not hungry, I'll skip meals. If I get really sick of the base, I'll broaden it a bit. I'll try to work through any early adaptation discomfort. I won't avoid cheat meals when eating socially. No doubt the plan will get modified in some ways as I go.

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    1. lol, you just wrote down pretty much exactly what I eat.

      I do try to have chicken livers every couple weeks. But other than that, pretty close. I usually don't eat before noon, then not again until 530, and very little after 7.

      Delete
  5. Hi Tim,

    Thanks for the wonderful blog. From the papers I could gather B-glucan barely degrades when cooked, and only starts to significantly drop at 140 degrees Celcius and over. Cooking might even increase its bioavailability. So long as you're getting the bran, cooking seems to be a non-issue.

    Best, palva

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    1. Great to know! Thanks.

      It's hard to find really good data showing the exact amounts of beta-glucans in oats of various type and preparations. I found several studies that showed the therapeutic dose is about 6g per day. From cooked rolled oats, I believe you'd need to eat about 3-6 cups (dry measure) to get this amount. But with oat bran, only about 1/2 a cup.

      I'm also seeing some oat beta-glucan supplements available, but in this case, I think I want to stick with a whole grain and not a supplement. I have no idea how it is extracted or what the missing 'oat stuff' adds.

      I can't wait to get the oat bran I just ordered and try it as a hot cereal for breakfast!

      Delete
  6. This blog just keeps getting better and better
    ,

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    1. Hopefully the same can be said of our guts!

      Delete
  7. hints, hints...

    blueberries?
    polyhpenols?
    anthocyanins
    cyanidin-3-glucoside?

    "Some anthocyanins can reach the large intestine in significant amounts and undergo decomposition catalyzed by microbiota. In turn, these decomposition products may contribute to the health effects associated with anthocyanins in the large intestine"

    High levels of Bifidobacteria are associated with increased levels of anthocyanin microbial metabolites

    http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf402495k (also take a look at the citing articles)

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    1. Gotta love them blueberries!
      Thanks for the link.

      Makes me wonder, just like using 4TBS of RPS or inulin vs the standard dose of prebiotics which is like 1tsp per day, with blueberries, you need to eat lots more for the beneficial effects.

      I was suprised to see a cup of blueberries only has 80 calories. Eating 3 cups a day for a while to help reset gut flora is really no problem.

      Delete
  8. "being given to diabetic patients who are taking Metformin, and not responding well.

    He is just looking at symptoms and treating them instead of looking at WHY they are not responding. For myself Metformin did nothing for my glucose levels, they kept going all over the place when doing the diabetic protocol. I was diagnosed with T2D 15 year5s ago, and as time went by it became more difficult to keep my glucse levels under control. And each time the doses were increased and we reached a level that injecting insulin came in the picture.

    It was only recently through a naturapath doing a stool test that Histamine Inolterance came to light. And one of the symptoms is erratic sugar levels. And, of course, Metformin wouldn't help because it is supposed to stop the liver from exreting extra "glucose. It won't stop an overactive immune system stressing out (fight or flight). You need extra energy, that is why your sugar levels are heightened. You don't want your energy supply shut off, when you need it the most.

    Today was my second smoothie (I only start with one a day). I haven't had a bowel movement yet, so am getting constipated again. I will stick with it. It might be that my body is adjusting to the new situation, and will settle down in a day or two. I can get inulin powder in Holland, in fact, already have it in house, so tomorrow will add 1 tbs to the mixture as well.

    Jo tB

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    1. Good points, thank you for that perspective. I've done a smoothie that last two days, and I must say, it's business as usual. No surprises at all. In fact, maybe less gas than usual, and I feel much fuller than usual.

      I'll bet a smoothie before a meal would lead to less food eaten. And of course, the blueberries could be eaten in a bowl and not in the smoothie for even more enjoyment.

      Delete
  9. Oat bran can be used as a substitute for bread crumbs too. Meatloaf, meatballs, etc.

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  10. "Only" 80 calories - & thrice a day? That's a lot for some of us - can this be a meal replacement? And should this be something to try for constipation?

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    1. Of course, why not?

      There is a fad sweeping the offices of America called "Shake-ology". They sell a subscription to a month of meal replacement shakes ($150/mo). You get a little packet of stuff that has fiber and vitamins you make into a smoothie.

      I looked at the ingredients, I think the oatmeal-blueberry-fiber shake is a much better plan!

      The ingredient list for Shakeology is impressive, but each is in such a tiny amount, I cannot believe it will do much for a person. One shake is 140 calories with 1 gram of fiber. And $150 a month. The blueberry plan might be about the same cost, depending on blueberry prices, but you are getting real food, not just minuscule amounts of dried powders.

      Shakeology Ingredients: Whey protein isolate , Pea protein , Pea fiber , Maca root , Organic chia , Flaxseed oil , Yacon root , Acerola cherry , Camu-camu , Pomegranate , Astragalus root , Bilberry , Blueberry powder , Goji berry , Spinach , Acacia gum fiber , MSM (Methyisultonylmethane) , Himalayan salt , Ashwagandha root , Cordyceps , Neutral protease , Alpha-amylase , Bromelain , Cellulose/cellulose gum , Lipase , Papain , Lactase , Maitake mushroom , Reishi mushroom , Luo han guo , Citrus bioflavonoids , Grape seed extract , Green tea extract , Holy basil , Rosa canina fruit , Schisandra , Cinnamon bark , Apple pectin , Barely grass , Ginkgo , Kamut grass , Moringa , Oat grass , Wheat grass , Amaranth , Chlorella , Quinoa , Sacha inchi , Spirulina , Fructose , Natural flavors , Xanthan gum , Stevia

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    2. Regarding constipation, make sure to drink adequate water doing this. I think the oats will soak up a bit of water in the gut. That's all I know about that.

      The oats are going to have a fair number of calories too. But id personally think of food replacement rather than meal replacement, unless you really enjoy the shake. This is supposed to be fun, not a sacrifice.

      Delete
    3. Oops, I meant food reduction, not replacement. Eat a little less overall, but still the things you enjoy.

      Delete
    4. Thanks, Wilbur. I'm thinking of sprinkling some oat bran and psyllium into my evening salad mush into which I also dump my potato starch, sweet potato, greens, other squash and salmon with a little coconut oil. It's my biggest meal by far. Only have one other small meal.

      Delete
    5. Thanks, Tim. I'd never opt for a smoothie replacement meal if given a choice. Much prefer eating! But I do want to try these different fibrous methods of gut renewal. I've improved tremendously over the past year or so, but it's still not normal.

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    6. I emphasize my water advice even more if you are using psyllium and have constipation issues. Psyllium takes up a lot of water in the gut.

      A long time ago, I thought it was inconvenient to drink water at certain times. I went too far. Those were some hard-to-pass hard, pebbly poops. Lesson learned. If I am thirsty, I drink water. I don't force myself to drink, but I always have water within reach. I never had that problem again.

      Delete
    7. Wilbur, right on about psyllium. One evening I took 2 tablespoons of psyllium and 4 tablespoons of potato starch. I think I sprained the muscles of peristalsis in my colon. Wow. I've never felt the sensations of the large intestine struggling to move something along before, but sure did that time. The colicky pain came and went afterwards for months even though I didn't repeat the procedure.

      Even though the bag of psyllium from the healthfood store indicates using 2 or (heavens to murgatroid 3) tablespoons three time per day, 1 scant teaspoon seems to be enough for me. That experience put me off powders and I rely on actual foods instead these days.

      I may try the oat bran though. I've got a Nutribullet but have not been using it recently. I'm an old fart and just not used to drinking my nutrition although a fruit smoothie with vodka goes down real easy.

      Delete
    8. 2 tbsp in one dose is huge! I do about 2 tsp, and that's big enough for me.

      The funny thing is that psyllium is really an actual food. Psyllium is a seed. It's quite flavorful, sort of floral. It's great ground onto an omelette. No different than, say, ground cumin or ground black pepper as far as actual foods go.

      Oat bran and vodka. That sounds good!

      Delete
    9. Thanks, Wilbur. I added just a bit of oat bran to my salad mush, like half a teaspoon, and - yeah, constipation. I'm tossing it. Not for me.

      Delete
    10. "I added just a bit of oat bran to my salad mush, like half a teaspoon, and - yeah, constipation."

      Long live human creativity. The recipe says: blueberries, inulin (not insulin) and oat (bran).

      Delete
  11. Hi Tim,

    It's your pal, Kathy, from Madison. I think your theory about newly single women and pheromones is correct! Good times...

    I finished a course of Elixa a couple weeks ago, and it stabilized things for me--no more bleeding and I can tolerate yogurt and cottage cheese again. I would like to see further improvement, so I just whipped up a smoothie per your recipe. Yum.

    I added a stevia packet and mixed it with oat milk, for a little extra oaty goodness. I wasn't so sure about blueberries and my defective innards, but your advice about inulin awhile back was so astute that I didn't hesitate.

    Some green banana flour I ordered should be arriving tomorrow. I am one of those people for whom potato starch does not work. I even went off potatoes for awhile, tried one, and was miserable. Nightshades, maybe? I am a failure at being an Irishwoman!

    No rumbles of protest so far. I usually have definitive feedback about 36 hours after trying something, so we'll see.

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    1. lol, good job! Is your 'inner cougar' finally coming out? Let us know how the "blueberry blast" treats you.

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    2. Tim, I must have missed this business about 'inner cougars'. Where is it?

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    3. It's a story from right out of the stone-age...cave man runs off and never returns, cave ma'am has a hormonal change, loses weight, emits pheremones. Soon all the other cave men take notice and the other cave ma'ams are furious at this hot new item in the cave.

      Lots of clubs to heads and dragging by hair ensue, moral to the story: lose your man...your inner cougar comes to life.

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    4. Ahhh, so this is what my daughter refers to as her 'prowling weight'. hmm. Thanks.

      Delete
    5. Just for the record, no weight loss here--I weighed 105 when my conspiracy driven, rapture- and human/angel hybrid-believing husband headed for the Northwoods.

      I can testify to the brain-gut connection. When things went on their rapid descent, I would up in the ER with hemorrhaging after eating turkey two days before. TMI, probably.

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  12. I wish I had read this when I was writing the blog post, but "oat bran" is a new concept to me. To be honest, I was not even sure what it was when I was writing this.

    If anyone else is as equally ignorant, it turns out the bran is the hard outer shell of cereal grains (good pic here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bran).

    But this really gets me excited. The official definition from the cereal grain chemist society ( http://www.aaccnet.org/initiatives/definitions/Pages/OatBran.aspx )

    "Oat Bran is the food which is produced by grinding clean oat groats or rolled oats and separating the resulting oat flour by sieving bolting, and/or other suitable means into fractions such that the oat bran fraction is not more than 50% of the original starting material and has a total betaglucan content of at least 5.5% (dry-weight basis) and a total dietary fiber content of at least 16.0% (dry-weight basis), and such that at least one-third of the total dietary fiber is soluble fiber.”

    So, sounds like they roughly mill it and remove the starchy flour, leaving mostly the outercoating. By this definition, oat bran will have half the "carbs" and starch of steel-cut or rolled oats and lots more fiber as a percentage of weight.

    Unfortunately, this will mean much less RS, too, but that's the price we pay for beta-glucans.

    This definition says 5.5% beta glucan content by weight. If that is correct, 1/3 cup (40g) would have 2.2g of beta glucans. The label on a bag of oat bran says "2g soluble fiber" and "5g insoluble". I assume the soluble part is all beta glucans.

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    1. And here is more than anyone ever wanted to know about oat bran. Apparently this is a relatively new invention. The 5.5% beta glucan is a minimum level, it sounds like it is probably quite a bit higher in real life.

      http://www.aaccnet.org/initiatives/definitions/Documents/OatBran/FDAletter.pdf

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    2. Good info. It's funny, all this info and I have no oats in my diet. Lots of beta glucans from beer and mushrooms, but no oat.

      I ordered some oat bran today. It's going into my daughter's smoothie when it arrives. I don't have smoothies, so I'm going to have to figure out how to get it in me.

      Ihave a couple of ideas. Maybe fermenting them overnight. But I did read a study suggesting that fermentation reduces the beta glucans of barley that was turned into bread (cooking further reduced them).

      BTW, I looked into this a while back. My recollection is that oat beta glucans come out on top very often in comparison to others like barley. I bought two types of purified oat beta glucans back then, but they were both rancid.

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    3. Tim, oat bran is so '80s. Back then it was oat bran muffins and oat bran this and that. To prevent colon cancer. Well, first it was brocolli and other brassicas. (Remember I'm old. I lived through the oat bran craze. Never tired it though. It was a fad. But hey, it IS a good thing.) I used to sprinkle wheatgerm on my raisin bran in those days. I love raisin bran except I can't eat 1 serving. 1 serving is a snack size. The raisins are covered in sugar too.

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    4. Gab - If you read this link, it explains a lot about why the oat bran fad of the '80's did not play out so well. There was no standard definition of "oat bran" and subsequently many people were not eating oat bran, but cellulose fiber and oat flour. And, just like with fiber recommendations, nobody was eating quite enough to make a difference. It looks like about 6g/day are needed, and along with fermentable fiber and polyphenols. A couple 'bran' muffins a week were not enough.

      http://www.aaccnet.org/initiatives/definitions/Documents/OatBran/FDAletter.pdf

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    5. I got my oat bran today. I didn't realize it is flaky (I thought it would be chunky). One of these days, I'm going to patent my method of mixing all of these fibers in one drink. This oat bran will be the last to go in. The viscosity of the drink will suspend the flakes, and it will go down great. So oat bran goes into the mix starting tonight.

      Delete
  13. so the recipe for the smoothie is to be reapedt 2-3 times a day, not divided ?

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    1. That is how the patent is was designed. I would say if someone has a very 'recalcitrant' (stubborn) gut, it would be worth a try. For the rest of us, a similar smoothie like this just whenever you feel like it.

      For practical purposes, this smoothie patent showed me a lot in terms of the role of beta glucans and polyphenols, and where the biggest bang for the buck is (blueberries and oat bran).

      Delete
    2. The patent says 2-3 times a day, if that was not clear. Meaning, make this smoothie each time, not divided up 2-3 times.

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    3. And it discusses timing of the two as :
      "Preferably, the formulation is to be ingested twice per day in between the first and second meals as well as between the second and third meals."

      and later :
      "It is preferred that the dose be administered twice per day within 1 hour prior to meal 1 or within 1 hour prior to meal 2, as well as within 1 hour prior to meal 3. These are our best estimates but the formulation may change."

      LOL. For those not on Metformin, would this be considered an off-label use?

      Barney

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    4. Tim, I would be sh*tting like an aquarium snail if I would be drinking this stuff in a smoothie three times a day. LOL! There's so much 'bulk' in it that a diabetic on Metformin wouldn't even be able to eat their full meals per day. So no wonder it works. Not saying a diabetic shouldn't do it if it works, but it would take some serious amount of intestinal fortitude.

      Delete
    5. Yeah, constant poop sounds about right. You're talking up to 12tbsp of just oat bran a day. That is a heck of a lot of oat bran.
      Then there is a whopping 4.5cups of blueberries a day.

      Not trying to diss the info, it is gold, but I don't know that many can pull those kinds of quantities off regularly. Might be wrong, you never know.

      Delete
    6. Keep in mind this is an intervention therapy, not for blueberries, oat bran and fiber, but for polyphenols, beta glucan and fermentation. I think it is pretty great that the doc did his homework and figured out how to get these three things from real food, although, he recommends blueberry pomace (a concentrated pulp) and Oatrim (purified oat bran).

      I would like to see some of the "hard cases" around here try this intervention. If it works magic, maybe we can refine it a bit to make it more accessible.

      Delete
  14. Let's not reduce the oat debate only to beta glucans content. There are surely other goodies in the bran (minerals, bioactive compounds, and my beloved tiny tiny endophytic microbes).

    And for these reasons mentioned above, not every oat bran source will be the same (growth conditions, preparation, storage...)

    "Maybe fermenting them overnight."
    Why not? That's what I do. Africans used to eat "stale porridge" all the time.

    Weston Price observed Gaelics eating oats at the islands of the Outer Hebrides. The oats were stone milled, and the plants were grown in soil fertilized by oat straw exposed to peat smoke.

    "The elderly people were bemoaning the fact that the generation that was growing up had not the health of former generations. I asked what their explanation was and they pointed to two stone grinding mills which they said had ground the oats for oatcake and porridge for their families and preceding families for hundreds of years.

    Since a fundamental part of this study involves an examination of the accumulated wisdom of the primitive racial stocks, it is important that we look further into the matter of the smoked thatch. I was advised by the old residents that a serious conflict existed between them and the health officials who came from outside to their island. The latter blamed the smoke for the sudden development of tuberculosis in acute form, and they insisted that the old procedure be entirely discontinued. For this purpose the government gave very substantial assistance in the building of new and modern homes. The experienced natives contended that the oat crop would not mature in that severe climate without being fertilized with the smoked thatch. While they were willing to move into the new house, they were not willing to give up the smoking of the oat straw used for the thatch to prepare it for fertilizing the ground."

    If you have never heard about smoke signals aka karrikins, read this. So cool.

    Smoke signals: How burning plants tell seeds to rise from the ashes

    "In the spring following a forest fire, trees that survived the blaze explode in new growth and plants sprout in abundance from the scorched earth. For centuries, it was a mystery how seeds, some long dormant in the soil, knew to push through the ashes to regenerate the burned forest.

    In the April 23, 2013 early online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), scientists at the Salk Institute and the University of California, San Diego, report the results of a study that answers this fundamental "circle of life" question in plant ecology.

    Noel's co-senior investigator on the project, Joanne Chory, professor and director of Salk's Plant Molecular and Cellular Biology Laboratory, says the team found the molecular "wake-up call" for burned forests. "What we discovered," she says, "is how a dying plant generates a chemical message for the next generation, telling dormant seeds it's time to sprout."

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    1. Very good observations and lessons from history here, Gemma. You will be happy to know that there do not seem to be any oat-derived beta-glucan supplements available, there are a few highly purified oat beta glucan products (OaTrim, and OatWell), but these seem to be marketed to the food industry as ingredients in their beloved 'high fiber foods (snacks)'.

      All of the purified beta glucan supplements seem to be derived from bakers yeast (ie. https://www.immunocorp.com/index.php/immutol ).

      What are your thoughts on this supplement? And the differences between oat/grain beta glucan and fungal derived beta glucan?

      Delete
  15. Will taking berberine for blood sugar lowering; while doing the fiber smoothie and probiotic foods be counter productive? Xan

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    1. Well, since the initial invention we are copy-catting here is designed to work with Metformin, a drug related chemically to berberine, there is a good chance it might have a synergistic effect.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. Metformin and Berberine are not similar chemically. Both have substantial antibiotic activity and can select for multi-drug resistant superbugs. Metformin cross-reacts with most sugar/glycan binding proteins, including beta galactosidase and AGE receptor. Berberine is fluorescent and binds to heparin, making heparin in mast cells and insipient Alzheimer's amyloid retinal bundles glow in UV.

      Fungal and plant beta glucans are very different in structure and are degraded by different enzymes. Fungal beta 3,6 glucans stimulate NFkB via a dedicated receptor, and that is why they are immune stimulants, similar to bacterial LPS. Fortunately the gut lining protects us from the pyrolytic impact of bacterial LPS and yeast glucan.

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    4. Art, I've read several places that berberine "contains compounds chemically similar to biguanide drugs." Metformin is a biguanide drug.

      What I also read is that Metformin acts to prevent gluconeogenesis in the liver, lower blood glucose in the process. And berberine is suspected to do the same.

      Aside from this liver action, the pharmocokinetics of berberine and Metfomin also seem to have an impact on gut flora.

      Does this sound accurate?


      Delete
    5. You can look at the structures on Wikipedia or on my blog. I worked with berberine for years and have done enzyme experiments and computational modeling of metformin bind. They are not alike in any way that I would recognize. Berberine binds to HS eveywhere and has hundreds of cross reactions. It is very unlikely that metformin and berberine act similarly on gut flora, although both are antibiotics and both are biologically active, because of their planar, hydrophobic surfaces. Most phytoalexins have the same general activity and are pharmacologically interesting, and that is the reason why they exist is such profusion. Plants can be taxonomically identified by each species' unique combination of phytoalexins. Breeding of herbs or cannabis readily produces phytoalexin variants. Combinations of antibiotics don't produce resistance, but purified single antibiotics/phytoalexins do.

      Similar properties of metformin and Berberine are selected coincidences.

      Delete
  16. for the Fiber would Psyllium Husk instead of Inulin be good?
    or Inulin is preferred here?

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    1. Not psyllium husk, but RS, FOS, larch AG, GOS, XOS and a few others listed in the patent about half way down: https://www.google.com/patents/US20150118330

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    2. so it has to be a RS type of fiber. a ferment-able soluble is not enough?

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  17. Hey all!

    I found an interesting way to jazz this up a bit - make the berries probiotic!

    http://nourishedkitchen.com/fermented-mixed-berries/

    I bought a whole bunch of blueberries and blackberries today at the farmer's market. I hope I like them, cause I've got 4 quarts. I bet they last longer than a month in the fridge - it seems one month is the default.

    And Garbriella, you won't need vodka in your smoothly if you let these ferment longer!

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    1. And this is my next project: probiotic blueberry sauce

      http://healthimpactnews.com/2014/making-your-own-fermented-berry-sauce/

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    2. Okaaaay...I thought there would be a little more interest in probiotic berries from this crowd. Oh well.

      If anybody is interested, the berries are fantastic. I don't use cultures or whey, just wild ferment. It smells like blackberry soda. It's a pleasing mix of sour, tart, and sweet, especially the blackberries. It feels a bit fizzy. I recommend it.

      I let mine ferment about 26 hours. From experience with other stuff, I know it will continue to ferment in the fridge until it gets sufficiently cold. Better too early.

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    3. lol.

      I clicked the link last night, but when I got to the part about using whey starter, I lost interest. Good to know it's not mandatory.

      It's getting to be blueberry season here. I hope to get 5-10 gallons, I will definitely have to figure out something I can do using wild blueberries and honey.

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    4. Yeah, I do all my ferments wild (I don't do yogurt or kefir). Early on, I had many more failures using a starter. Not so many with wild. Sandro Katz said something like "why pay for a starter when it comes free on the vegetable."

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    5. Poor Tim. What a terrible problem to have. Too much honey and wild blueberries.

      Wilbur,
      So you just use honey and the berries (honeyed berries)? I've read about that technique, but never tried it out.

      Barney

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    6. And water and a bit of salt. I followed the recipe, but left out any kind of starter like whey or sauerkraut juice. I can't pick out the honey in the flavor, but I bet it helps give it a more complex taste.

      It's my first time to do fruit. I've fermented mushrooms into a ketchup before. Now that is something I highly recommend. Unbelievable umami. There's no tomato; originally ketch ups didn't have tomato. Mustard is also a good one to try if you haven't.

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    7. If you make the honey berries, I wonder what it would taste like. Supposedly the berries will "ferment" and fizz a little,

      I've been wanting to try the mushroom ketchup for a while. A traditional meat sauce. The recipe looked awfully complicated though. I've read about fermenting mushrooms in brine too.

      Barney

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    8. Make the ketchup! People who tried it couldn't stop eating it. I made mine with portobellos, but I think shiitake might be really good too. I can't remember which recipe I used. I rember it being lengthy, so maybe it's the same. I always add garlic if not already in the recipe.

      I'm going to have look into honey berries. Mine was fizzy a little. I ate a bowl and burped a few times after.

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    9. Thanks. I'll give the ketchup a try too. I can sometimes get the fresh mushrooms at a local farmers market. Like many foods, it seems to make a difference.

      Barney

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    10. You guys are so lucky. I'd kill for a basket of mushrooms. The wild berries blackberries should be coming on any day now, so Wilbur I'll try a ferment if I get enough.

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    11. This is the recipe I used

      https://books.google.com/books?id=ET8uAAAAQBAJ&pg=PA25&lpg=PA25&dq=fermented+mushroom+ketchup+recipe&source=bl&ots=5AMChVUrdF&sig=k9watvwkixPhZKx11tmZ44Akh1k&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CDAQ6AEwBjgKahUKEwj04LC43fTGAhUJUogKHeoZBbg#v=onepage&q=fermented%20mushroom%20ketchup%20recipe&f=false

      It's hard to find fermented versions of recipes.. I did not use whey, and I'm nearly certain no sauerkraut juice. I added garlic.

      Wildcucumber, we're getting good stuff now. I love eating this stuff!

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    12. Thanks Wilbur. That does look tasty.

      Have you ever tried growing your own mushrooms? Many varieties can be cultivated on logs or hay. We've had a pretty wet June / July, so locally produced mushrooms have been plentiful. I've seen lots of strange mushrooms popping up in the garden too. I give them a wide berth:-)

      Barney

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    13. No, I've never tried growing my own. I've discovered I don't like growing stuff. Everything keeps trying to eat it!

      We had a lot of rain too. I took my daughter on a hike, and we photographed the different and unusual mushrooms we saw. We had to stop taking pictures because our hike was going too slow. The variety was amazing, but none looked like anything in the store. I give them a wide berth too.

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    14. I think the berries have settled into their final form. The blueberries are awesome. I prefer them over fresh blueberries. It's like a blueberry fizz soda or something, but not as sweet. The blackberries are mushy. In one jar, the liquid is purple because the blackberries are breaking up. Yet, I think it adds to the flavor. I prefer fresh blackberries. Definitely worth a try, especially if you plan to eat the blackberries quickly.

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    15. Hi Wilbur - quick couple questions (and sorry if this isn't the appropriate place - moving the conversation from fermenting berries), I seem to be having good results with this so thought I'd try some of my previous problem foods (or at least the lesser ones that should help in the longer term).
      I'm currently juicing a red onion and 2 cloves of garlic. I can get it down eventually but it makes me feel sick (however other previous issues seemed to have passed).
      Questions:
      1. How much are you eating per day and how?
      2. Does your body better handle the smell after a time (wife won't come anywhere near me!)
      3. Did you have to work up to this and did you have any discomfort originally?
      Cheers

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    16. It's great that this seems to help you!

      1.). It varies. I don't have the cravings like I used to. I have zero problems eating onion. I can eat it all by itself, and often do. But I'll put it on almost anything, like meat, tomatoes, burgers, omelettes, on and on. I eat about half of a large bulb every day for breakfast. I just weighed the amount, and it's about 50 g. My wife puts it in my omelette. I guess it's technically not raw, but it isn't cooked either I like the egg inside my omelette to be still runny for reference. I'll add it to anything else that I can: hamburgers, soups, gazpacho, meat, yogurt sauce, etc.

      2. I think so. I felt like I smelled early on, especially if I burped. But I think that has gone away. My wife says she does not smell me. If your wife will eat garlic too, then she won't smell it on you.

      3. I had no sickness or digestive issues that required me to go slowly. However, I have become more accustomed to the burn, so I've been able to do larger amounts.

      I forgot to say above that I use a garlic press most of the time. Sometimes I'll slice, like on pizza. That's another good place if you make your own. Slice the garlic and put it on raw. It will still be crunchy and rawish after the pizza is done (or put it on after). I fit a whole bulb on a 12 inch. I have a pizza place that will do it for me, and the pizza there only takes 90 seconds. The garlic is barely heated.

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    17. I need to proofread more. The sentence with half a large bulb refers to garlic. I probably eat a whole onion per day. Usually red. I also like green onions.

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    18. Recently I have taken to pressing my garlic, letting it sit for ten minutes to develop the allicin, then swallowing with water, the way you would take a bunch of pills. No smell, no discomfort. But then I did not have previous problems with gastric distress. I usually take three cloves/ half a bulb.

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    19. Thanks very much for taking the time to answer my questions - it's given me some further ideas to try
      Rob

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    20. That's a good idea, elliebelly. I'll have to try that, but I rather like my omelette. But that would be handy when I'm traveling! That's been a problem. When you say like a pill, do you mean spoon some in your mouth and then wash it down? Or mix in water and then drink the water? I've also heard honey helps with the burn, but I've not tried it.

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    21. Fermenting reduces the burn quite a bit. Besides lacto-ferment, I've seen other preparations using honey and honey plus ACV. All seem to reduce the burn to varying degrees. I think eggs help too. The burn of raw garlic is so variable. Every time I bite into a raw clove I don't know what I'll find.

      Barney

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    22. Elliebelly, I just tried the spoon in mouth method and wash down with water. It works very well! Thank you! It is a bit odd to feel the burn in my stomach (mild) without the mouth burn. This will help a lot when traveling.

      Anybody know if TSA allows garlic presses in carry on luggage?

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    23. Further ideas to use to get the garlic down. I know we aren't trying to mimic paleo as such but rather trying to eat as our ancestors ate to look after our microbiota. A little thing niggles me - I've read the numerous benefits of garlic, yet intuitively if something tastes so strong (and burns) would it have been consumed ancestrally? Just curious is all

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    24. glad you liked it. Yes, I do it with a spoon, then drink as much water as it takes.

      Just read a book about the Delaney sisters who lived to be over a hundred. Was pleased to see that was one of their regular habits too., although they said they wash it down with a glass of cold water followed by a glass of hot water.

      Don't know about the TSA, but I do love this garlic press
      http://www.amazon.com/Joseph-Rocker-Garlic-Crusher-Stainless/dp/B003Y3AZSM/ref=sr_1_17?s=kitchen&ie=UTF8&qid=1438023313&sr=1-17&keywords=garlic+press

      I use a trussing needle to poke out all the residual garlic so I get every bit and it is minced thoroughly with lots of exposure to air.




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    25. Barney or whoever else is interested -

      I set up the ketchup recipe above for fermenting. It's pretty good now, but it'll get better over the following days. But one thing I just remembered is that the recipe calls for Worcestershire sauce, which is complicated and time consuming to make as a ferment (the book has a recipe). The store bought stuff has all kinds of nasties in it. So I use about a slightly less than equal amount of raw red wine vinegar and add fish sauce (Red Boat 40, which is just anchovies and salt).

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    26. Elliebelly

      That's an interesting press. I don't think TSA could object to that one, so I might buy it for travel. I like my Kuhn Rikon but don't have special feelings for it.

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    27. LOL Wilbur. You're reading my mind. I stopped short on the recipe at the Worcestershire sauce. It looked complicated. I have a bottle of Red Boat waiting to be used for something like this. Just a dash of the fish sauce and mostly vinegar? Can't wait to try it out. Thanks for the tip.

      Barney

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    28. Yeah, when I read the recipe, I realized that's maybe why you thought it was complicated. Ignoring the Worcestershire sauce, the ketchup recipe is not THAT hard. I have a bottle of Lea and Perrins leftover from my pre-gut bug days. The first 3 ingredients are vinegar, HFCS, and anchovies. So vinegar plus fish sauce is a good direction. I hardly ever measure, and I put fish sauce in until I had something that tasted really good. It's only two tablespoons of WS, so I don't think it adds a big amount to the taste.

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    29. Wilbur,

      I had just bought a Kuhn Rikon when a friend gave me that one as a gift. I never use the the KR now. you could use tooth picks if you want to get every last bit. Better than the trussing needle for the TSA.

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    30. Barney,

      One day of the planned two-day fermentation has passed. I am getting some bubble action.

      I tasted it. I strongly, strongly recommend that you make this! It's unbelievable. I forgot to mention that I'm not a super fan of the ginger in this recipe, so I leave it out. I just mention this because the recipe calls for what I think is a large amount.

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    31. Just back from the farm with a pound of freshly harvested shiitakes. I'll get those going this afternoon, then start the ferment tomorrow. At this point you've modified the recipe enough to claim ownership:-) Perhaps trade the onion for some garlic?

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    32. Wilbur,

      This mushroom ketchup smells fantastic! Of course, how could it not with vinegar and honey. Looks like a lumpy gravy. Day 3.

      Barney

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    33. Elliebelly

      I am vacationing and tried the swallowing garlic like a pill. Oh man, I was dying. Retching, uncontrolled salivating, hiccups, coughing, etc. for about an hour. Probably 30 g or so? I hurt. I'm fine now, but I think I'll gather more info before trying again. Did I miss something? I don't understand as these things normally do not affect me. TMI, but later my farts smelled like garlic. That weird intersection of awesome and disgusting!

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    34. Oh Wilbur! I am so sorry to hear that. And on vacation too! Was it minced through the garlic press? Taken with lots of water? How very strange that you have not had any problem with the amounts of garlic you have been eating as food, but responded this way to simply swallowing.

      30 g? About How many teaspoons was that? I have been taking three large cloves daily first thing in am after my oil pulling and don't feel or smell a thing.

      I have been wondering though how taking it this way differs from actually eating it, chewing and mixing with saliva and other food, and if it makes any difference in the benefits. Clearly your experience indicates there is some difference. i hope you can find more info

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    35. Yes, I was surprised too! And I like to think of myself as a strong, resilient person, so to admit defeat is not in my character. But I concede. The salivating was the worst part. I'm going to guess I took about a Tablespoon. It was German hardneck, which is supposed to be a little more potent.

      Just to be sure, please don't think I blame you. This is all on me. I just don't understand why I failed. Gotta figure this out!

      But yes it was through the rocker press you suggested (I like). I took it with my fiber drink.

      I think it does make a difference, and the purer way that you do it seems the best. I was trying to move that direction.

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    36. I've been trying this and also got a peculiar reaction. Whilst I definitely do not consider myself anywhere near Wilburs robustness guts wise, I have made improvements and had been consuming more garlic.

      I switched to mincing 2 cloves, leaving for 10 mins, then swilling down with water. I will then feel fine for around 1.5 - 2 hours. After this I begin worse bloating and farts that are literally none stop, extremely loud and also smell of garlic.

      I assumed it was affecting pathogens and/ or my lack of possible diversity to handle the garlic.

      Just to note - I have no reaction to garlic added to foods or as taken as a supplement (gel caps).

      Just thought I'd add my experience in case it helps any

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    37. I am glad you spoke up Rob. We are all so different. I think it helps tp keep hearing that. I was going to suggest that, perhaps Wibur's difficulty stemmed from the fact that he took it along with his fiber drink. I am assuming that you take some of the fbers, but not with the garlic.

      So here's the thing: although I had been takind the garlic on the same days but not the same time I took the powders, recently I have not been taking any of the powders and getting my fibers only from food. I had stopped because no matter how or what I took, and whether or not I had garlic that day, it seemed my bowels were just too efficient and I would be woken up in the night or at least too early in the am by the call. And my sleep is something I have been trying to improve for decades. The odd thing is that when I was awoken I had none of the usual sensations, no mild crampng andcertainly no real discomfort other than the barest whisper of a headache, and sometimes not even that. I was just wide awake and at some point after lying there would decide to sit on the throne and would be magnificently rewarded with great production and headache gone, except for the fact that I was awake.

      Now, without the powders and just the garlic I get the same great production, but on a better schedule. My sleep is really good and so is my mood.

      I had thought that I was just stopping the powders for a few days and would need to go back to them at some point. But so far this seems to be really working well for me.

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    38. Yes, very interesting Rob. I kinda like the garlic smelling farts.

      It very well could be the fiber drink. I've done it a couple of times before but not with that reaction. I'm going to wait until I get home before I try again.

      It sounds like things are good, elliebelly. If you decide to go back to the fibers, you might try moving them to a different time. Maybe that will keep them from waking you in the middle of the night.

      I'm eating at restaurants mostly. I am AMAZED at how hard it is to get a decent amount of veggies even when I ask for modifications to dishes. Everything seems to be about 4:1 in favor of meat in portion, and then the veggies are smothered in all kinds of sauces and stuff. At home, our meat portions are probably closer to 1:3 with the veggies usually unadorned and raw. I'm getting tired of so much meat.

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    39. "I'm eating at restaurants mostly. I am AMAZED at how hard it is to get a decent amount of veggies even when I ask for modifications to dishes. Everything seems to be about 4:1 in favor of meat in portion, and then the veggies are smothered in all kinds of sauces and stuff."

      This is what I hate most about traveling...the food. We spent a couple days on the road last week. I'd start my morning at IHOP with a bowl of oatmeal. I tried the hashbrowns, but they were so oily I could not eat them, they actually left an oily residue in my mouth.

      For lunch I would try to find a salad and eat it with no dressing. Dinners were at Olive Garden, Red Robin, and a little pizza place. Finding decent selections was hard. And like you said, very light on veggies. I was happy to find about 15 cooked garlic cloves in the chicken dish I ordered at Olive Garden.

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    40. You know, Wilbur I tried the fibers every which way and time. Some times were a bit better than others, but even with the best of them I was up at 5 am. But i will probably experiment again. Or I may realize there was some other factor at play that I hadn't taken note of. I have no doubt there is more to the story.

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    41. I've taken just 1 clove tonight - away from my fibers. Interestingly when I take garlic, it has made me go to the loo around 2-3am, usually because I get an itchy bum (which I haven't had in ages) - but this disappears once I've been to the toilet.

      It does puzzle me a little why garlic seems so beneficial with all its associated anti microbial activity - especially longer term (I could easy understand its use as a short term therapeutic) - I must be missing something.

      @Elliebelly - how would you describe your overall health, and in particular gut health?

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    42. I forgot to add - I had to be careful with fibres and sleep, certain ones after 4pm kept me wired all night (esp RS when I experimented) though inulin and wheat dextrin are OK for me whatever time

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    43. My on the road breakfast is an omelette in which I ask for all the veggies I can find on the menu to be put in raw. Spinach, asparagus, peppers, onions, and some others are usually present. I can get a good bit of veggies, but it's downhill for the rest of the day. Getting a decent amount of onion is like pulling teeth. No matter how much I try, nobody gives me anywhere near the amount of onion I want. Fortunately, onion travels well so I bring my own.

      Rob, I had timing issues with taking fibers close to bedtime. I found that they would make me very warm for about an hour sometime in the middle of the night. I haven't had that in a while though. I thought it was the bugs generating heat as they fermented the fibers, but it's only speculation.

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    44. Rob, my overall health is fairly good, although I do have Lyme disease right now. My issues for years have been poor sleep and erratic energy , and 'they have slowly improved with various nutritional changes. i have never had any overt gut issues, but eliminating all grains and legumes about. 15 years ago resolved arthritis in my hands, so clearly my gut was not 100%. Sometime ago after playing around with fibers I added back legumes and some grains and did not see a recurrance of the arthritis. So something had improved. But now that I have the Lyme I am being extra careful and avoiding grains, but not legumes

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    45. Why would you guys eat raw garlic? It burns. Cook or pickle or fry the damn things first. Bunch of weirdos. ;)

      I don't even eat raw green onions for the same reason. Disgooosting.

      Wilbur, are you driving? Because then you can do 'tailgate meals'. A Coleman stove or even smaller.

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    46. Elliebelly - thanks for the backgroyund, I think it helps to put peoples reactions into context with their health. Interestingly I had the 1 clove last night and reactions were much more mild (no getting up in night)

      Gabriella - I feel more and more weird as time goes by, I struggle to understand people. For example 2 people at work have type 2 diabetes, 1 getting considerably worse with pains and skin looks really sore and bleeding. I thought about mentioning this site etc. But they're not even prepared to do the basics - both continue to eat chrisps, cakes, chocolate etc.
      Another quick one - father in law has possible skin cancer (undergoing tests at moment) - I mentioned Tims line that I'd seen on here - cancer doesn't stand a chance when your immune system is on song - and began discussing the ways he could improve his ammine system (not that I'm any expert by any stretch) - I may have well spoke to the wall - no interest what so ever.
      I know the weirdos was a polite bit of banter, but just funny its how I feel lately!

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    48. Just finished reading a sweet little book, Every Day Wisdom, about two sisters 105 and 103 at the time of the writing. Guess what? Every morning they swallow a finely chopped clove of garlic, washed down with a full glass of cold water and a glass of hot water. Then they eat their breakfast of eggs, fruit and homemade oatmeal

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    49. Gabriella -

      You set the wheels in motion! I hadn't thought of tailgating. We did do something similar, but without the grill. We stopped at gamers markets and got cheese, grapes, blackberries, blueberries, and peaches to eat for lunch. That way we could eat without going into the ubiquitous fast food places on the road. I have AC power outlets in my SUV and I'm thinking a refrigerator too. Thanks!

      Rob -

      Yes on feeling weird! Another aspect is that it's not that, IMO, that people don't need to give up the chips and cakes that they can't seem to live without. Instead they could just add veggies to what they already eat. People I know will go days without eating vegetables, or if they do its a small iceberg lettuce salad with cucumbers or something. Eating a fresh raw carrot followed by their chips, or a bowl of berries with their cake would do wonders. I read something recently that said that either 65% or 85% (I forget, but it matters little) of the antioxidants in the average American diet comes from coffee! I feel it too when I go into restaurants. I kid you not - one restaurant had a 20-ounce ribeye steak that you could pair with "family plates" of vegetables. 1.) who can eat a 20-ounce ribeye?! 2.). We ordered some of the family plates of vegetables. One was crispy Brussels sprouts and bacon cooked in bacon grease. The sprouts were good, but cooked so much that any hope of getting fiber or other goodies was gone. Other options were things like creamed spinach. The sautéed mushrooms were the only decent choice on the menu, but still with too much oil. I'd gladly go with 8 ounces of ribeye with triple the amount of some decent veggie.

      On my last day, I did discover that the ceviche had a decent veggie to meat ratio. Now see, why can't the restaurant have a ribeye with ceviche-style veggies? The veggies would be raw, and the acidity would complement the fat of the ribeye. A great combination. But good luck convincing the chef to make such a dish. The number one excuse is that the dishes are already portioned, and to do that would leave them unable to correctly match the servings. It doesn't even come down to cost; they just won't do it.

      I went to a farmers market a while back, and there was an elderly lady that I had seen before. She had noticed me as well. We both load up on the veggies and fruits. She looks to be in very good health. That time I happened to be behind her at the checkout. She looked at my load, and said "We seem to be kindred spirits." Indeed, weirdos even at the farmers market.

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    50. Dang, I forgot to say those "family plates" of vegetables - had they even been properly cooked - would have been a smallish serving for me.

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    51. Wilbur, at the Chinese etc. supermarkets they sell little tabletop butane stoves. The fuel is in a can like a spray can. Fuel is sold in packs of 4 cans and it's cheap. I have one something like this and it has it's own carrying case; http://www.amazon.com/Max-Burton-Table-Burner-Black/dp/B000G6S8Y8

      Comes in really handy when there's a 3 day power failure at the coldest time in winter.....grrrrrrrrr...... If you have a medium sized wok, you can cook really quickly on these things.

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    52. Hi Gemma, thanks for the link. He is having it confirmed - doctors said it likely is cancer due to how rapidly its grown on his forehead (size of 1/2 radish in 2 weeks) but having biopsy to confirm. He's not in best of health to start with and I was trying to offer ways to improve this, but people look at me like I've 2 heads!

      Just to clarify (my science isn't up to your level unfortunately) - when I did a google on methyl sulfone - it appeared very similar to readily available msm - am I right and would this poss offer benefits?

      Wilbur - whilst I think you're right, I think the problem with eating much sugary / bad fatty foods is the affect on taste buds (gut bacteria manipulating our wants and desires?) - since eating the way I do now raw peas, onions and even my fibre supplements etc. have never tasted so good - all with a huge corresponding repulsion to (or at best indifference) to cakes sweets etc.

      But initially eating this way was more mind over matter (maybe that's too strong but you get the gist) - i.e. despite not craving the taste like I do now - I'd eat it anyway for the health benefits. Most people I speak to - if they don't find eating a particular food orgasmic - they won't eat it!

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    53. Elliebelly, I can fully understand your frustration at people not wanting to listen, let alone take responsibility for their health. I tried for a time to convince co-diabetics that their diet is a huge contributor to their condition, but they always come back with the official line and diligently and without a critical thought take the medication that is being prescribed and everything will be hunky dory. It is too much of a hassle to think for themselves. They rely on the "magic pill" to solve all their problems. We know it doesn't. If it wasn't for critical thinking on my part I would have been put on insuline years ago. Everyone buys into the adage that by taking my medication everything will be solved. Sadly I have stopped trying to help people improve their lives, if they don't listen (indeed talking to a brick wall).

      Jo tB

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    54. Rob

      Methyl sulfone is the same as methylsulfonylmethane (MSM).

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    55. Gemma - thank you very much

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    56. Rob -

      I guess about a year and a half ago, I went through the same transformation about food cravings. Intense cravings for stuff I never cared about before, such as onions and garlic, and intense repulsion to things like bread, refined sugars, desserts, etc. I think it's what you say - the gut bugs are controlling our desires. Another aspect, I think, is that it might be a corrective phase in which perhaps the gut is trying to weed out certain bugs and promote others. I hadn't thought much about it until your post, but I can eat pretty much anything now and I do. Desserts even. The foods that repulse me now are processed ones plus those laden with oils. Sadly, for instance, I cannot eat at Indian restaurants anymore. I have to make the food myself.

      I think the transformation might have been gradual. We started thinking Bout fibers, taking them, and then trying to get a little more fiber in our food choices. Then I think at some point we said no to something we'd never would have said no to (in my case bread) and it surprised us. Certainly for me, that's when I started paying attention. What seemed discrete was for me a little more gradual.

      I've tried to tell others to not stop eating what you like. Instead, eat more foods with fiber. And it would be good to supplement a few fibers. There's no sacrifice. And eventually, I hope, there will be a day when skipping chips and cake is not a sacrifice - eating a carrot and some onion sounds much better.

      Rob, I've forgotten what ails you. Have you noticed improvements? Because my recollection is that my gains came very quickly right about the same time that I noticed my tastes changing. It's been too long to remember the exact timing. But I think it's a very hopeful sign for you. Good luck! And definitely keep us updated on your progress.

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    57. Wilbur - I think your angle on getting people to eat better is more helpful than mine. Because I didn't mind 'going cold turkey' I expect others to be the same. My experience is that this isn't the case. Your more gradual approach might be the stepping stone some people need. I will try this when trying to influence someone for their own health.

      According to the docs I 'just' had ibs. It was far from just frequent, persistent runny stools. Going to the toilet at least 5 times a day was excruciatingly painful - felt like bile acid. Other symptoms - red faced, histamine problems, ringing in ear, fatigue, major bloating, headaches, lower leg pains, painful gums, struggling to concentrate and very limited food choices that were safe.

      Now much, much better, not perfect, but if I avoid known food problems, I'm pain free with no rushing to the toilet. Issues to resolve now are ear ringing (though much quieter), last bit of red face, lower abdominal bloat (before was top and bottom), improve BMs and begin to tolerate starch.

      Might seem like I have a fair bit left to do but I'm pain free, energy is spot on and I don't worry about where the toilets are! For these improvements I am so grateful.

      My current fibre supplements are:
      Inulin - 6 tsp
      Inulin ORAFTI HP - 6 tsp
      Oatwell (if I can't get oat bran due to travel etc.) - 6 tsp
      Larch Arab - 1 tsp
      PHGG - 1 tsp
      Wheat dextrin - 2 tsp
      Glucomannan - 1 tsp
      Mesquite - 1/2 tsp
      Chianti seeds - 1 tsp
      Psyllium - 1 tsp
      Amla - 1 tsp
      Pectin (for making jam) - 3 tsp
      Grape seeds - 1 tsp
      And recently fiberfin - 1 tsp

      Aside from increasing RS as I can - do you see any holes that may benefit from being filled?

      I'll certainly keep you updated - I visit this site at least once a day. Other people do Facebook - I do veggie pharmacy!

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    58. That's great news, Rob. Some things for me were almost immediate (disappearance of joint pains and allergies) while others took time to evolve (BMs that are perfect each and every day). Your ailments are different from what mine except for the bathroom visits. I'm so grateful that is no longer a problem. I thought about that on my recent road trip - everything was perfect. Before the fix, I'd worry so much about having to go on the road that I'd give myself constipation.

      All that is gone now. I'm free.

      Your mix is very similar to mine. A little higher in some things, a little lower in others. Are your grape seeds whole? If so, do they digest well? I might try them this winter when it's harder to get quality fruit.

      Have you tried baobab? It's one of my top three. It's 35-50% pectin, but it's loaded with antioxidants. I take about 4 Tbsp, so that's about double the pectin you have. I'd freak out if I couldn't get it. The fruit you'd get is unprocessed, so this is a whole food way of getting pectin.

      for some reason, dandelion root powder is special to me. I noticed an improvement in stool quality after starting it. There might be no connection, but I like it.

      A significant number of the posts on my Facebook page are about chronic ailments, weight issues, etc. then the same people put up pictures of recipes they like that are devoid of veggies and seem to have layers of oily cheese over the top. Uh huh.

      Oh, I don't think my approach to influencing others will be better than yours. I've had zero success except with my daughter. I make her food though. I don't think cold turkey is necessary, but apparently adding a fresh vegetable to a bag of chips is too hard for most.

      Delete
    59. Rob - Feel free to comment/ask questions on older blogs, I get comment notices in my email.

      Things are kinda slow right now, summer and all. Hopefully I'll get back into writing new posts before long.

      Wilbur - I see those same pictures on Facebook. I think sometimes that the 10-15g average fiber intake is actually closer to 0. The recommendations for 25-35g is really a good start, but requires a serious shift in how you eat and think about food.

      Using the fiber content on food labels is about worthless, too. Most listed fiber in processed food is cellulose.

      Tim

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    60. Wilbur - I'm glad you've managed to gain complete health - obviously for your own benefit and wellbeing and also as hope to others, including myself.

      I did try baobab maybe a month before, but stupidly I went far too fast. I think a combination of me feeling much better and reading before about it being quite high in pectin, got me feeling too comfortable and I increased it far too rapidly. This caused quite severe skin reaction and joint pain. I've just started today with 1/2 tsp again and will work much more slowly.

      Dandelion is a new one and quite cheap - I've ordered some thank you.

      I wish there was a better way to reach out to people. Both of my brothers eat a typical diet and both are starting to show possible signs of poor gut function (headaches, skin issues, fatigue). I try to get the message over, but with little to no success. I know I keep bringing this up, but I find it very difficult watching people (especially the ones I care about) continue to act in ways that could have serious implications further down the line.

      Tim - I hope your not just out enjoying yourself :-)
      I'll have a look over some of the previous posts and share some of my experiences, it may help someone.

      Delete
    61. Rob -

      The weekend WSJ had an article that made me think of you. The gist of the article was that hearing problems - tinnitus included - seem to originate from free radical damage. The article was about a researcher using d-methionine to counteract the damage, but I think there was a higher suggestion that maybe antioxidants in general can both prevent and cure hearing problems.

      In our shared belief that the gut influences cravings, I've found myself this summer craving high antioxidant foods. Lots of berries and tomatoes. I'd like to test the hearing theory, but unfortunately my wife keeps mumbling....

      Heres a link that has most of the WSJ info

      http://www.audiology.org/news/clinical-trials-d-methionine-interview-kathleen-campbell-phd


      My sister has been obese since childhood. She had bariatric surgery and gained weight. She is convinced that she will die at 60 just like our mother and our maternal grandmother. She has the diseases my parents had. The ones I had too before curing them with fibers. Her kids have the diseases. I thought she'd show at least mild interest in my correcting problems we've shared since childhood. Nope. Not even mild curiosity. Eating a raw carrot is just weird.

      Delete
    62. Wilbur - sorry I forgot yesterday to answer your question re the grape seeds. It is a powder - the whole seeds. I was trying to find a link but looks as though the seller has disappeared! I made sure it was the whole seed and not an extract. I've had a couple of different brands and I liked the current one the best - tastes much more like tannins.

      Thanks for the link re hearing - I'm going to have a look into d-methionine and if I can't see any side effects I will give this a try.

      I suppose regarding trying to help people - ultimately the choice is theirs. My dad has peripheral neuropathy and it has taken me a good 4 years to begin incorporating high fiber foods into his diet. It didn't help when initially I got him on to inulin and physillium and he mentioned it to his specialist. The specialist told him to stop the supplements on the basis he didn't know how they may affect his treatment. The same specialist told him he was fine to continue drinking alcohol if he wanted.

      We actually fell out a little over me pushing him to try the fibers (which he has had considerable improvements with). I reasoned I would rather things come to a head with the possibility of him improving, as seeing him wobbling around all over the place and being in constant considerable pain, was too much to keep me quiet just to keep the relationship happy.

      I wouldn't try this with my brothers though - I feel the relationship wouldn't be strong enough to ride it. Aside from my wife and son, I think I need to learn to keep my mouth shut as my well meaning intentions seem to be having the opposite effect.

      I'll just have to 'selfishly' look after myself and my immediate family unit!

      Delete
    63. Thought I'd just add - I started on the patented intervention and have been eating 400g of blueberries/ day. Got a mild bit of upset (sorry if TMI alert! - a small discharge of clear fluid after BM) when I transitioned from 200g to 400g but this didn't last long. I do like the berries - I buy them frozen for cost and because fresh berries here don't seem to last a week - they will be a permanent staple I feel!

      Delete
    64. Rob, man, you are eating like a bear! :) All those berries don't give you upset stomach? I just checked, and blueberries are low in sugar alcohol so that's not it.... about the clear fluid that is. And Art thought that blueberries make blue poo. Ha!

      Delete
    65. Thanks - hopefully my guts will be as strong as a bear! No upset stomach from these berries now. Interestingly though if I eat 3 largish strawberries I begin feeling tired.

      I sent a Ubiome sample off on the 21st Aug - so when I get the results, Hopefully Tim can help me decipher them.

      Delete
    66. Just a little update - tried the baobab and kept to the 1/2 tsp per day. I am surprised to say how negatively I responded to it. I eat totally the same foods everyday (even same amounts) - so it makes it easier to spot problems.
      I think it is immune system related - joints cracking and popping like you wouldn't believe, face back to really quite bad and ear has Phil Collins playing the drums.
      I stopped yesterday and already things seem to be calming down. I'm thinking of getting some auto immune testing done on the back of this. I'll give it a while before trying the dandelion root.
      Hopefully this will help someone - when guts are bad - all bets are off

      Delete
  18. Hehe, that's funny, my usual breakfast is a bowl of oatmeal, blueberries, some inulin and chunks of apples (sometimes I add yogurt or a little butter). I never thought about the effect it could have on my gut flora, I just like this food combo, been doing that for a long time!

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    1. Well don't keep us in suspense...how is this working for you?

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    2. Maybe your guts bugs are the ones who like the food combo, and they reward you for giving to them. But, yes, how's your autoimmunity and digestion?

      Delete
    3. Hey guys, you ask about AI and digestion ? I have no known allergy, am virtually never sick and I am lean. Actually, I think my health is great. I am very active physically and my diet is 99% real foods, mostly plant based, with an emphasis on starchy items (I like me a steak once in a while though but it is rather rare - no pun intended ;) ). It is a subjective assessment mind you, but I just never really think about it. I wanted to check if chia seeds would be a good thing to add to my breakfast, as a colleague of mine started to "annoy me" about those. One link leading to another brought me here, and I am quite shocked by what I am reading: so much distress and pain ...

      Anyway, whether it is my gut bugs ordering my usual breakfast or not, I have been at it for years and I am alive and kicking, so it can't be bad :D

      Delete
    4. Oh I forgot, I see that you have a page on a potato diet. I have had some days where I got lazy and only ate things like potatoes or beans (takes little to cook on big batch of those and likewise to reheat a portion when hungry). Some periods of time have been so busy with things that these foods come in handy: very nourishing, nothing to think, barely anything to do. I would also do the same with parboiled rice / barley / spelt / buckwheat groats. Add a little salt, pepper, vinegar, a touch of butter maybe, herbs, it is a 5mn dish. I would also chop a shallot or even raw garlic when fancy strikes :) Come to think of it, the funny thing about all this is that I rarely crave for meat or greasy stuff, and as I said I am no vegetarian ...

      Delete
  19. Thanks for all info. Really looking forward to trying this combination out.
    Somewhere on here there was a brief comment that oat bran and the beta-glucans are there for the gut bugs to feed on, rather than you. But I know I'm remembering that wrong, and I can't find it again. -- especially as all of this is for gut-bugs.
    Did I just make that up?

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    Replies
    1. Dr. Ayers is the beta-glucan specialist, but let me take a stab at this question.

      Beta-glucans are not food for the gut bacteria, per se, like inulin, RS, and other fibers. Beta-glucans have an effect on the composition of the gut microbiome, however.

      What I think is happening here with this particular mixture said to be therapeutic, is that the polyphenols kill off pathogenic bacteria, or at least make life miserable for them by breaking up biofilms and altering pH. The inulin/RS feeds beneficial bacteria causing them to increase in number and further crowd out pathogens, while the beta-glucans elicit an immune response. Somehow, this 1-2-3 punch may be more effective than any of the three elements alone.

      Wikipedia says: "β-Glucans are known as "biological response modifiers" because of their ability to activate the immune system.[3] Immunologists have discovered that receptors on the surface of innate immune cells called dectin-1 and complement receptor 3 (CR3 or CD11b/CD18) are responsible for binding to β-glucans, allowing the immune cells to recognize them as "non-self".[4][5]"

      From the patent author:

      "While aspects of the present invention are aimed at increasing the population of colonic microbiota that garners carbohydrates, there is the possibility of those microorganisms redirecting their carbohydrate-harvesting activities from dietary to host polysaccharides according to nutrient availability (7). The colon mucus layer comprised of mucins, which are glycoproteins that have O-linked oligosaccharides or O-glycans, which account for up to 80% of the mass of mucin (17). The colon mucus layer covers the gastrointestinal epithelium where if provides a protective layer from the rich intestinal microbiome as well as any pathogens. Such endogenous source of glycans in the microbiome habitat could offer alternative nutrients. However, when dietary glycans are present, it appears that harvesting energy from the diet is preferred (7).

      Recently, evidence that bile salts are bacteriostatic to cecal microbiota was presented (24). Moreover, the data indicate that microbiota of the Bacteroidetes phylum are most sensitive to bile salts. Secretion of bile salts into the intestinal tract is stimulated by fat ingestion. Thus, ingestion of fat containing food increases bile secretion, which in turn decreases the numbers of Bacteriodetes microbiota. Viscous beta-glucan encapsulates or sequesters bile acids (25) and thus has the ability to preserve members of the Bacteroidetes, even when fat is ingested.

      Thus, an important aspect of the present invention includes dietary glycans. Most are indigestible carbohydrates. Since glycans are also in abundance in yeast walls, one source of dietary glycans is from yeast. Other sources include dietary beta-glucan. Bata-glucan is a natural polysaccharide that can be isolated from oat, barley and wheat most commonly, but also from baker's yeast, certain fungi, mushrooms, and bacteria. Addition of beta-glucan is an important component of the present invention to maintain the mucosa protective barrier as well as to offer nutrients to microbiota that prefer to forage on carbohydrates and would increase the B:F ratio."

      Delete
    2. Thanks for clarifying!

      Delete
  20. As a side note, Metformin leads to decreased re-absorption of bile acids in the small intestines (disrupting the established pool) and consequently increased quantities in the colon. Meaning more Firmicutes and less Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria. This would sound counter-intuitive, given Bacteroides genus is bile-resistant, however BA is probably displaying antimicrobial activity by stimulating FXR to produce more Nitric Oxide in the colon. However, this is all stool sampling. There is a marked difference between stool and mucosal microbiome of the same host. So everything is still highly speculative at this point and on top of that, "one size fits all" is impossible given the huge differences between people's microbiomes. We are not mice in laboratories, after all...

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    1. aqdrk - You are well-spoken in the language of the gut.

      I found it interesting that Metformin leads to increases Akkermansia. Akkermansia, as we know, feeds on the mucus layer. Therefore, Metformin must cause an increase in mucus. This could be good or bad depending on who else is living in the mucus, especially if they are pathogens making biofilms.

      The 'patented smoothie' does seem to be an effective way to ensure that the gut biome is more hospitable to beneficial microbes than pathogens when taking Metformin and there are certainly lessons for everyone else when looking at the makeup of the smoothie.

      Delete
  21. I'm 2 days into this. 1st day little negative reaction (probably to be expected) - toilet 7 times - usual mild dihearea, but it felt a little immuny (quite urgent, hard to stop pushing when finished). But skin showed marked improvement (had bad rosacea for years with ibs symptoms).
    This morning - felt a touch of nausea - skin looks for me - pretty amazing!
    Another point - been dreaming much more (immune activation?).
    I have made significant improvements with various fibres (inulin seemed to be game changer - though I had to start really small and I still can't tolerate rpg) prior to this but seemed to have hit a sticking point. I'm hoping this will let me move up a gear - it seems positive so far.
    One last point I'm using oatwell as this seems to have a higher percentage of beta glucans.
    I'm on phone - so hope this comes across right and is useful to someone.
    Thanks again Tim, me and my family owe you and other significant contributors on here so much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rob, where did you find OatWell? I see it on Amazon for $70 for a 300g container. Just noticed another product there, Nutrim, which is $75 for a 900g tub.

      I suspect these are good sources of beta glucans, made using better methods to remove the starch and other fibers found in oat bran. Just wish they were not so expensive! Oat Bran is about $5 for a 500g bag, and contains nearly as much beta-glucans as these purified products. My impression is that Oatwell and Nutrim are just repackaged oat bran that is used by the food industry, similar to potato starch products like PenFibe or Hi-Maize corn.

      Just curious where you found it and was it as expensive as I see on Amazon?

      Delete
    2. I'm pretty sure the makers of Oatwell is Sweoats from Sweden. You can check it out on www.sweoat.com. They process 10 tons of oats to get 1 ton of Oatwell concentrate.

      Made my smoothie using frozen swedish blueberrys/billberrys, betavivo (22% beta-glucans - Swedish version of Oatwell), oat bran, RPS and Oatly, oatmilk with 0.4g beta glucans per 100 ml.

      Almost skipped dinner alltogheter after that smoothie!

      /Lars

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    3. It's quite expensive here in the UK but not that bad. I tend to get it off amazon for about £21 for 300g.
      In my case I think it's useful. I've tried oat bran in the past and though I tolerate it better than normal oats (which gives me more bloating and makes my skin worse), it still affects me a little.

      Today my skin looks better still!

      Delete
    4. We were playing with the numbers a bit. OatWell, OaTrim, and the oat-derived beta glucan powders seem way disproportionately priced as far as the beta-glucan content one could get from almost any oat bran sold as a hot cereal mix.

      And with the cereal mixes, you also get some insoluble fiber and probably RS as well.

      But, to be true to the invention, the smoothie mix that Dr. Heiman came up with used an oat bran supplement.

      I'm sure the goal of the invention was to package this in as small a serving size as possible.

      When trying to immitate, don't overlook using cheaper sources, albeit, in larger amounts.



      Delete
  22. Yesterday I nearly gave up on the smoothie after two days of no bowel movement. It came just in time, in fact, I even had a second one later in the day!! I changed my routine a bit: had a tablespoonful of coconut fat in the morning, had my smoothie in the afternoon (forgot to add chia seeds). I also had heavy pats of butter along with some cream cheese on crackers (for the fat). At bedtime I tried a small teaspoon of psyllium in a mug of water.

    This morning my sugar levels were steady, my blood pressure was down, my body temperature was up (it is always low 35.9). This morning it was 36.2. And my weight was down to 70.4 kg). I haven't been this low since my teens !!!! It may all be a fluke, but hey, it feels great.

    The reason I have included lots of butter and coconut oil, is to get butyrate production going which hopefully will combat the constipation I normally suffer from.

    No bloating, no farting, eveything quiet downstairs, but hopefully they are doing their job. I will increase the oat bran in my smoothie, I will soak them until I take my smoothie later in the day.

    Jo tB

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    1. Jo tB - Are there farmers around selling raw cheeses? I know if I lived there again, I'd be going crazy on Dutch cheese.

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    2. In Amsterdam we don't have farmers, just markets. I have not been able to find any raw cheese. I think they are not allowed to promote it by European law. On the Noordermarkt there is every Saturday an organic market and one stall sells both goat and sheep cheese.

      Jo

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    3. Jo

      some French, Italian or Swiss cheeses are made from unpasteurized milk, Not sure about Dutch. You have to search and ask.

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    4. Gemma, most cheeses, especially aged and fermented are off the list due to my histamine intolerance. Hard, as I adore cheese of every sort.

      Jo

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  23. Dr. Ayers,

    you said before in another comment:

    "Beta-glucans are a diverse group of polysaccharides that differ dramatically in properties in those made in fungi and plants. Cellulose is the most abundant biopolymer and contributes to the digestibility-challenged polymers in soil humus. The beta 3,6 glucans of fungi/mushrooms/yeast are the hallmarks of fungi and kick off human inflammation via a devoted fungus-detecting receptor. The seed glucans (3,4?) are typical prebiotic fiber. Cellulose passes, fungal glucans (hormesis aside) cause stress by turning on inflammation, seed glucans are floral feed."

    and

    "Fungal and plant beta glucans are very different in structure and are degraded by different enzymes. Fungal beta 3,6 glucans stimulate NFkB via a dedicated receptor, and that is why they are immune stimulants, similar to bacterial LPS. Fortunately the gut lining protects us from the pyrolytic impact of bacterial LPS and yeast glucan."

    It seems to me that in some readers these statements might provoke unnecessary fear of 3,6 (yeast, fungal and mushroom) beta glucans, or yeasts and mushrooms, respectively.

    I think it should be clarified. I hope you did not mean to say that people should not be eating mushrooms of fermented foods (that inevitably contain yeasts).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Gemma,
      I am a frustrated glycobiologist and have been teaching for a half-century, so it is difficult to not wax professorial. People seem to take nature for granted and project human, nurturing traits inappropriately. I tend to balance the perspective by counter projecting nature in tooth and claw -- plants as poisoners and renders of flesh. Eating is not safe. Poking sticks at big beasts with pointed horns is as dangerous as eating burgers with fries and big drink at McDonald's. Picking mushrooms/ toad stools is no less daunting. Plants are the original Lucrecia Borgias. Every forest path should have signs reading, "Beware! Plants are killers!"

      Eating is not safe. Plants are not safe to eat. Fungi want to eat you. But fear not, for your body is robust, and your enzymes and gut flora will protect you (if they don't inadvertently kill you by producing carcinogens or neurotoxins, resp.)

      Beta glucans is a silly way to categorize dietary polysaccharides, because it groups carbs with unrelated properties, just as does "glucans" that groups cellulose with starch (amylase digestible and resistant). Plant (3,4) and fungal (3,6) are both diverse groups of prebiotic polysaccharides digested by different species of gut flora. The digestion by gut flora makes them both safe to eat and beneficial. When the glucans are still part of fungal walls, they pass through the gut or remain in biofilms on the lining of the gut, just like potentially inflammatory bacterial LPS. I expect it would also be safe to eat LPS, even though it makes me shudder to think of the consequences of inhaling it. Inhaling powdered fungal 3,6 glucans may also be a problem.

      The bottom line is that it is reasonable to ignore most of my conceptual food prohibitions, if understanding underlying molecular mechanisms is not a priority. If you have a compromising condition, however, your defenses may be down and my prohibitions may be relevant. Inflammation, for example, can open up the gut barriers to the LPS (and fungal glucan?) of gut flora and produce some serious problems.

      I am healthy and can rely on my body and gut flora, so I don't worry about much that I eat. I wouldn't eat purified fungal beta glucans or phytochemicals/polyphenols as supplements, but I enjoy them as parts of whole foods.

      Delete
    2. Art, what's this Quorn thing? I only read about it last night. Fungal processed food fake 'meat products'.

      Delete
    3. Quorn is vat fermented fungal mycelia with RNA washed out. Egg whites are used to bind the fungus, which is cellular protein plus fungal wall beta glucans. It is a way of turning cheap starch and fermentable sugars into more expensive texturized protein. It could be considered to be tofu, but made with fungal beta glucans. (I can't believe that I made parallels between 3,6 and 3,4 glucans. I feel dirty.)

      Another concern with these fungal proteins (even though most of the protein is actually from the egg whites) comes from my experience with fungal enzymes used to digest plant cell walls. Those enzymes were very allergenic (lots of basic triplets?) and the lab I worked in had to keep hiring new technicians, since they quickly developed allergies and couldn't work any more.

      Meat is much safer and easier to digest.

      Delete
    4. Art, this stuff, when all the 'flavourings' are added, sounds totally like the faux food of a dystopic world. Thanks.

      Delete
  24. Dr. Ayers / Tim

    I'm currently reading the fascinating book "An epidemic of absence" which makes a very compelling argument that the "missing link" for people struggling with AI issues could very well be the absence of helminths (i.e. worms etc).

    I buy into this argument as these organism have, more or less, always been present during our evolution and its just recently we have completely eradicated them.

    The map for worm-prevalence and auto immune disease is inverse.

    It is a really interesting topic, with decades of research supporting it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here's a couple of articles
      http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052702304314404576413303666083390
      http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052970204795304577220993641557460

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    2. Yeah, interesting topic. Probably lots of merit to the ideas presented in the book. I am hesitant to recommend or try helminth therapy, but agree that it should be researched.

      Delete
    3. I wrote a post on my blog about vitamin C production from helminths, and how sea voyages (change in diet and poop deck sanitation) cure helminths and lead to scurvy.

      Delete
  25. Tim,

    How do black raspberries compare to blueberries for polyphenols? We had an overwhelming influx and my freezer is full of them.

    So far, no ill effects from the blueberries, and I've now passed the 36 hour mark of dire consequences.

    ReplyDelete
  26. You are a lucky lady! Black raspberries are nearly as powerful as blueberries, but comparing commercial, store-bought blueberries with the black raspberries you picked, you are undoubtedly in possession of a much better source of polyphenols.

    The smoothie doctor was shooting for 700mg of polyphenols per serving, which seems to require 1.5 cups (180g) of blueberries.

    According to this heavily referenced source, 100g of black raspberries contains 980mg of polyphenols! So you'd need about 3/4 of a cup to equal 1.5 cups of blueberries [Note: math is not my strong suit!]

    But, at any rate, all dark purple berries are very high in polyphenols, and to "mega-dose" with them, I would suggest about 1 cup of berries per smoothie or however you eat them, twice a day. This is the therapeutic dose we are talking about.

    Otherwise, just incorporating black/dark purple berries into your daily routine is certainly a "good thing", especially if combined with dark chocolate, red wine, and/or herbal teas.

    From link I referenced above:

    The polyphenol content (Folin assay) in berries may vary from 30 to 2000 mg/100 g. The highest levels are found in black elderberry (1950 mg/100 g), black chokeberry (1752 mg/100 g), black raspberry (980 mg/100 g), and blackcurrant (821 mg/100 g). A wide range of phenolic compounds are present in berries and polyphenol profiles are characteristic of each species (70). The main polyphenols in berries are the anthocyanins, the ellagitannins (Rubus and Fragaria genus), and the proanthocyanidins. Because of their polymeric nature and complex molecular structures, ellagitannins and proanthocyanidins are difficult to quantify and could be underestimated. Phenolic acids and flavonols are less abundant and less studied, except in some species such as blueberries rich in 5-caffeoylquinic acid.

    http://phenol-explorer.eu/reports/39#berries

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    Replies
    1. Guess I should have started with "just as" or "more" powerful than blueberries...

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    2. Thanks for the thorough response! I am also watching the crop of wild blackberries in the nearby arboretum which are illegal to pick. Those would undoubtedly pack the polyphenols, if one would be bold enough to pick them. ;)

      I eat chocolate in therapeutic doses. The sacrifices we make for our health...

      Delete
  27. Kathy, I've been thinking the same thing, that blackberries must also pack a polyphenol punch. Also makes a change from just eating one fruit (much as I love blueberries)

    Jo

    ReplyDelete
  28. Jo, I was concerned about lots of berries because my system is so weird--FODMAPS, gluten, ad nauseum. Tim interpreted my uBiome results and found virtually no lacto and bifido. I was able to piece together that any food or supplement that encouraged them caused my system to purge them and bleeding ensued. A post on Free the Animal about Elixa made sense to me--take probiotics in such large numbers that the purgers would be overwhelmed. This has returned me to my state of being several years ago, so it's a good start.

    I think my next move is experimenting with different supplements and fibers to feed the little buggers. So the smoothie idea seems like a good place to start. :)

    ReplyDelete
  29. Hi Tim and all!
    Sharon the Celiac here. Not even going to risk oat anything, mushrooms, which I love dont like me, probably the inflamation componant?? Any other ideas or substitutes for Beta Glucan?? BTW, potatoe diet was great, have done it twice now. Very calming to the gut. Wish I'd known about it last year when diagnosed with CD. Took a course of Elixa, lost 6 pounds in the first 3 days. Stil, l no more weight loss. Got a fitbit as sugested at FTA, we Ranch, so my reg Doc telling me to move more and eat less really ticked me off. I easily hit 10,000 steps a day even when office work keeps me in. For what its worth I have a hard time hitting 1500 cal per day. And all whole foods we grow or get from someone I know. Appriciate the hard work and research you all do!!
    Thanks!
    Sharon
    Oh and I'll wade in on the endophytes with what I know in Ag and forages...soon

    ReplyDelete
  30. Sharon,

    Why not try certified gluten free oats. There are several available.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Hi thanks for the feed back but I can't eat GF oats without a gluten like reaction. Due to cross contamination or ???
    Sharon

    ReplyDelete
  32. So what is going on if you take a teaspoon of oat bran and feel horrible?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, that's the million dollar question. I wish there was a standard, clear answer.

      I generally feel worse on fiber, and so I'm trying to find ways to fix my gut so that fiber helps.

      Delete
  33. Anon, I get bloating, cramping then "d" for a a few days and feel like I've been run over by a truck. Then constipated for 3-4 days. Migraines too. I'd rather eat mushrooms and just be bloated lol! Haven't tried mushrooms after taking Elixa maybe will give them a whirl this weekend and see if there is a change....
    I've been looking for a substitute for oat bran just haven't had any luck.
    Thanks

    Sharon

    ReplyDelete
  34. Sharon, I did a quick Google search and it appears that beta-glucan is in Oats, Millet, mushrooms and yeast. Things you can't have. You may have to resort to supplements, but you would have to see what they are made from. Beta-glucon is advised to lower cholesterol levels for diabetics. As it is classed as a fiber, maybe do a little reasearch on other forms of fiber. which will benefit your gut flora.

    Chia seeds are a rich in fiber. Have you tried them? Would be good if you can tolerate them.

    1 ounce (28 grams) serving of chia seeds contains:
    Fiber: 11 grams.
    Protein: 4 grams.
    Fat: 9 grams (5 of which are Omega-3s).
    Calcium: 18% of the RDA.
    Manganese: 30% of the RDA.
    Magnesium: 30% of the RDA.
    Phosphorus: 27% of the RDA.
    They also contain a decent amount of Zinc, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Potassium, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) and Vitamin B2.

    They are allowed on my low histamine diet, so they are a good source for me.

    Jo

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    Replies
    1. Sharon, it should be barley not millet. Barley is used to make beer and is not gluten-free. According to the Celiac site, the following grains and other starch-containing foods are naturally gluten-free:
      rice, cassava, corn (maize),
      potato, tapioca, beans, sorghum, quinoa, millet, buckwheat groats (also known as kasha), arrowroot, amaranth, teff, flax, chia, yucca, nut flours.

      So you could try potato flour, tapioca flour, arrowroot flour. Try each one separately to see if you tolerate them.

      In Amsterdam I can even buy Nigerian Poundo Yam flour (we have a large Ghanese community). I have added 2 tablespoons to my smoothie, and had no ill effects.

      Jo

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  35. Tim, good idea, bad idea, or intriguing? One of the ways I have been enjoying the oat bran-berry-inulin mixture is in yogurt. I make my own yogurt sometimes, so it occurred to me to add oat bran when culturing the milk. I'm thinking the oats might ferment along with the milk a little. I wouldn't cook the mixture first, just add the oat bran when the milk is at the right temp.

    I'm going to try it!

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  36. I am also going to nominate myself for the Nobel Peace Prize for fermentation and patent the idea if it works.

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    Replies
    1. Good idea! Especially if it tastes good and you like it. But, ummmm. How to break this to you? Sorry to say:

      https://www.google.com/patents/EP1337159A1

      "The present invention relates to a fermented product based on an oat suspension free from soy, to a process for making the product, and to a starter culture useful in the process.

      A fermented product selected from yogurt, yogurt drink, smothie, crème fraiche, sour cream, and spread is disclosed. The fermented product is based on an oat suspension essentially free from soy and dairy milk. Also disclosed is a process for preparing the product, and a starter culture useful in the process."

      Maybe the Nobel Peace Prize is still an option for you!

      Delete
  37. Hi Tim,

    In regards to taking oats (b glucan), this study shows that B-glucan triggers spondylarthritis (e.g. arthritis) for those that might be predisposed to it, e.g. those who have psoriasis. Is this a cause for concern for some people with this shake?

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/art.34423/full

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    Replies
    1. Anon,

      from your link:

      "In autoimmune-prone SKG mice with mutated ZAP-70, which attenuates T cell receptor signaling and increases the autoreactivity of T cells in the peripheral repertoire, IL-17–dependent inflammatory arthritis developed after dectin 1–mediated fungal infection.."

      That's what was meant by isolated beta glucans in the previous discussion - they signal presence of pathogenic fungi (whose appearance was perhaps previously masked - beta glucans were hidden, or not noticed by the immune system). Dectin is the receptor sniffing for the fungal pathogens. When your body finally notices such a signal, immune response against pathogenic fungi may be triggered, and your immune system starts killing the pathogens. Are these symptoms good or bad?

      Blueberries should be beneficial in arthritis, so should inulin type fructans. I may be wrong, but the combination (beta glucans, blueberries, inulin) is probably the key.



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    2. Sorry, I should have said: (real food that contains beta glucans, blueberries, inulin) is probably the key.

      Delete
    3. I read a fibre smoothie recipe recently,that suggested not peeling the banana because the skin is full of fibre too, and you won't notice it in the smoothie. Never seen that before. Anything to it?
      Anne

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    4. I have heard it, but never tried. Make sure they are cleaned well, no telling what gets on a banana peel as it travels the world. Personally, I go for green bananas, they kind you have to slice open with a knife. Super high in fiber, those.

      Delete
  38. And I noticed, too, they seem to be discussing the fungal forms of beta-glucans, not oat:

    "Beta-glucan is a major component of bacterial and fungal cell walls, including Candida, Aspergillus, Saccharomyces, and Pneumocystis species, some of which were identified in the natural respiratory infection that occurs in SKG mice. Under specific pathogen–free (SPF) conditions, SKG mice remained healthy (21). However, under these conditions, intraperitoneal (IP) injection of β-glucan–containing products, including curdlan (1,3-β-glucan aggregates), laminarin (soluble 1,3-β- and some 1,6-β-glucans), and zymosan (containing β-glucans, mannan, chitin, and protein) was shown to induce inflammatory arthritis in these mice."

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  39. Much appreciated for the breakdown, Gemma & Tim!

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  40. Another paper on deadly fungal beta glucans:

    Fungal β-glucan, a Dectin-1 ligand, promotes protection from type 1 diabetes by inducing regulatory innate immune response. (2014)

    "β-Glucans are naturally occurring polysaccharides in cereal grains, mushrooms, algae, or microbes, including bacteria, fungi, and yeast. Immune cells recognize these β-glucans through a cell surface pathogen recognition receptor called Dectin-1. Studies using β-glucans and other Dectin-1 binding components have demonstrated the potential of these agents in activating the immune cells for cancer treatment and controlling infections. In this study, we show that the β-glucan from Saccharomyces cerevisiae induces the expression of immune regulatory cytokines (IL-10, TGF-β1, and IL-2) and a tolerogenic enzyme (IDO) in bone marrow-derived dendritic cells as well as spleen cells. These properties can be exploited to modulate autoimmunity in the NOD mouse model of type 1 diabetes (T1D). Treatment of prediabetic NOD mice with low-dose β-glucan resulted in a profound delay in hyperglycemia, and this protection was associated with increase in the frequencies of Foxp3(+), LAP(+), and GARP(+) T cells. Upon Ag presentation, β-glucan-exposed dendritic cells induced a significant increase in Foxp3(+) and LAP(+) T cells in in vitro cultures.
    Furthermore, systemic coadministration of β-glucan plus pancreatic β cell Ag resulted in an enhanced protection of NOD mice from T1D as compared with treatment with β-glucan alone.

    These observations demonstrate that the innate immune response induced by low-dose β-glucan is regulatory in nature and can be exploited to modulate T cell response to β cell Ag for inducing an effective protection from T1D. "

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    1. NOD mice can be prevented from developing T1D by a single injection of mycobacterium or other bacterial adjuvants, so presumably in these experiments the beta 3,6 glucan from yeast is stimulating a pathogen recognition system parallel to bacterial pathogen recognition. This is similar to the inflammation induced by the beta 3,6 glucan that is effective against pathogens and cancer cells. The NOD mouse has weakened Treg production and damaged histocompatibility antigen-based antigen presentation. This does not mimic typical human T1D.

      Providing beta 3,6 glucan along with antigens when the Treg system is dysfunctional, as is the case in typical gut dysbiosis in humans, should result in autoimmune disease. Beta 3,6 glucan plus antigen in a T1D diabetic with a repaired gut flora should reverse the disease.

      Note the mistake: cereal grain beta 3,4 glucans don't bind to dectin-1.

      Delete
    2. Brilliant. Thanks Dr. Ayers for the science-backed explanation.

      Delete
  41. Well, I guess I'd be one of those tough cases who could try this, as my slow transit is pretty significant despite whatever I try this last year or so post-partum. Oats and I never agree, despite my several attempts. But, heck, since it's all the same lately, I'll do this. I'll report back if I have success. If you don't hear back, no success.

    Terri F

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  42. Is it ok to heat the blueberries? I am using up some frozen ones I have.
    Not sure if the polyphenols are destroyed in the process of freezing and then cooking.

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    Replies
    1. According to Jo Robinson, in her book, Eating on the Wild Side :

      Flash freezing is fine, but thawing must also be done quickly. a microwave is best for this. Cooking actually increases their phytonutrient content.

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    2. From what I've seen, the polyphenols are in the color. As long as the 'blue' is still there, the polyphenols are there. I've seen mixed reviews on the effects of cooking.

      Frozen blueberries are perfect to use in smoothies or just mix with milk or yogurt and stir your bran and fiber in, don't even need a blender. The frozen berries turn the mixture into ice cream!

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    3. Thank you both. I have been adding frozen ones to porridge (steel cut oats). I don't have a microwave.
      They are still very blue, though I noticed a couple from a bag that has been in my freezer a while are less so. Might start doing smoothies instead, or in addition to.

      Sarah

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  43. Alas, I have to bail for now. Too much fruit gives me insomnia because of fructose malabsorption. I was hoping berries wouldn't do this if somehow the microbiome changed.

    Even the sleep medication I sometimes take doesn't do the trick. Maybe I'll get some polyphenol supplements or try again later with a smaller amount of berries. Shucks.

    I'll keep up the raw oat bran and inulin, though. And I have some green banana flour and pectin that I haven't experimented with yet.

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    Replies
    1. K.K. - I made that mistake, too. I thought I was genetically 'broken' and could not eat fruit. I read about the horrors of sugar, even natural sugar, and gave up fruit completely. It's quite a paleo tradition to give up fruit!

      When I would eat raisins, for instance, which are a very high frustose treat, I would get horrendous gas. This is a hallmark of fructose malabsorption--not insomnia.

      I think you are operating on false assumptions. Blueberries are low in fructose, anyway, but 2-3 cups a day is quite a bit. If they do not make you have horrific gaseous events, keep eating them! DO NOT think you can find quality fake polyphenols, they are a myth. You need real ones from darkly colored plants and berries. Try eggplant!

      Sleep medication? You have some bigger issues, possibly. You know what calms the wheels in your brains? Gut microbes. Keep experimenting!

      Good luck!

      Bruno

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  44. I'm doing it. I think it's day 5. Poop didn't have far to go to improve but it did. Digestion good but I have autoimmune and weight issues so I thought I'd try. It's so filling (I eat it in a bowl with raw milk) that I cannot imagine eating more than once a day. I'd have to skip dinner. Anyway, I actually enjoy it.

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  45. I tried it. My stool became like sludge. Kind of a peanut butter consistency. I had fewer BMs, and it would take 10+ minutes to get the job done. I also became tired and bloated. I tried taking a break for one day, and then my BMs would be a bit easier to accomplish, plus I'd also feel calmer, more energetic, and would lose the bloat (and by "more" I mean more than how I felt before this particular smoothie experiment). I tried this a few times, with the same pattern occurring. I still feel this is worthy to try, but I need to find a different approach to it, because it makes things really complicated at work. After reading one of Wilbur's posts (somewhere on this blog) about taking things slowly, I figured that would be a better course of action for me. I'm going to get back to a regimen that feels stable for me, then slowly start upping the amounts.

    Cheryl

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  46. Thought I'd come back and report. I did this three times a day, except maybe 2-3 days I could only do it twice a day, for two weeks. My GI issues are slow transit constipation and food intolerances and some bloating. Results: 1. My slow transit stopped (as in my gut got even slower). Bummer but oatmeal has historically caused this in me. 2. My food intolerances seemed stable, maybe even improved. (I don't do well with simple things like eggs, coconut, and nuts/seeds, and I tried eating these during and after the period.) 3. My bloating got worse with time as my constipation got worse, but no bloating really just from the smoothies. 4. The first few days I had a horrible headache, but it subsided and I actually felt just fine head-wise a few days into it. 5. Grains in general make me over-eat usually, and I probably looked a lot too forward to my oatmeal smoothies. The thought of them made me happy--probably a bad sign for overeating. These were quite filling, but I still ate my other meals. Had I kept it up, I probably would have gained weight.

    That was my experiment. After two weeks and the constipation getting too bad, I made myself stop. Since then, I decided to hit green bananas, VSL3, and banana starch powder mixed together once a day and occasional cold rice/potato--with some fair success. In the past, resistant starch foods, potato starch, and butyrate supplements together helped me the most (completely normal for about two months) but I stopped when I got pregnant due to certain foods and supplements sounding disgusting. On re-trial, after delivery, it just didn't work so well. (Hormones affecting the gut?) But this time, I may be in luck... That's my slow transit and oatmeal smoothie/blueberry/potato starch smoothie story. Maybe someone else can relate?

    Terri

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    Replies
    1. Terri

      what if you tried another way with the oats - cooking /soaking or fermenting overnight, and cooking...and/or replace potato starch with inulin?

      Or blueberries only - just to test?

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    2. Okay Terri, why don't we try a whole different tack?

      What I do is make a pot of stock with all the veggies in it. I cook the veggies for an hour after the meat on the bones suggests that it is getting soft. Then I take the celery, celeriac, kohlrabi, parsley root, carrots, onions.... put them in the Nutribullet with stock. Store them in the containers in the fridge. For supper (I eat two meals per day) I can add cooked black eye peas or whichever cooked pulses I have and blend in. I warm this up, two to two and a half cups per day, and no problems with constipation. The beans can give some major stinky farts but only before a BM. Then it's all good for the rest of the day. Blended cooked kohlrabi in beef stock was surprisingly good.

      I have a pot of stock in the fridge right now but have eaten all the shitake mushrooms and meat from the ribs, so am pressure cooking kohlrabi, then carrots and parsley root and celeriac and celery. Let them cool down, add stock in the Nutribullet container and blend up.

      I find that raw vegetables do not give the same results. As Wild Cucumber told me, the Chinese saying is 'let your stove do the cooking and not your stomach'. I think after thousands of years of observation, the Chinese make a valid point.

      Cooked oat groats work well. Don't know what you did with your oats.

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    3. Terri

      One of the things that came up early in my gut healing was the "happy feeling" you describe. I had weight and overeating problems, and also worried that giving in would recreate them. One day I decided to trust my gut. Since then I decide what to eat based on what makes me happy. It's how I choose to eat every day, unless I have to give in to what makes a family member happy.

      My weight fluctuates very little. True for at least 18 months? I'll go a month walking 8 miles nearly every day, and then - like recently - be unable to do so for a few weeks. My activity and food intake vary so tremendously that it would be impossible to calorie count or adjust. I honestly am astounded that it works.

      Over the summer, for instance, berries and tomatoes make me very happy. I eat lots. Given my old tendencies, I worried that eating too many would make me gain weight. Then I thought "well if I get fat eating blueberries and tomatoes, then so be it." Tortillas and cheese (an old comfort food) would be a different matter. But tortillas and cheese don't make me happy anymore. My weight is unchanged.

      I think the gut signals what it wants. Probably by making one feel happy when thinking about food choices. As Gemma suggests, maybe it wasn't the oats making you happy. I tried the experiment, and found that the oats did not make me happy, and indeed my gut seemed to resist them. No issues. But thinking of flaxseeds makes me happy, but thinking of oats gives me a sense of unease.

      I'm just putting this out there because I hope, one day, people reading this will have a healthy gut. If my experience is representative, that gut wants to help make food d choices, and does so through feelings of happiness. Ignoring those feelings might prolong the recovery.

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  47. Thanks Gemma, Gabriella, and Wilbur. I do so appreciate your input. I will ponder these suggestions, compare them to what I have done, and consider incorporating what I've not yet tried as I keep trying new approaches in a somewhat methodical manner for my lifelong problem. I'll "see you around" (here on Vegetable Pharm). :-) Thank you for what you each said. I will be thinking (and cooking). --Terri

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  48. Is it okay to dissolve inulin in hot water prior to mixing, I find it clumps really badly.

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