If you have been wanting to improve a chronic health condition, whether it be a metabolic disorder, allergies, weight gain, auto-immune disease, or any type of chronic inflammatory process, these basics for diet, lifestyle, and supplementation can help you get started to learn about and address ongoing health concerns.
Bone broths, fermented foods, healthy fats such as butter, cream, sour cream, milk, yogurt, kefir, tallow, lard, olive, coconut oil, sesame oil, and palm oils. Oils should be cold-pressed unless using expeller-pressed, no-odor, refined coconut oil for cooking.
Minerals / hydration
Bone broths, fermented foods, nettles infusions, liquid minerals added to filtered water (see resources below under supplements), and fermented foods which enhance absorption of minerals and other nutrients in the foods you eat.
Blood sugar regulation
Consume traditional fats such as raw dairy foods from pasture-raised cows, beef fat from grassfed cattle, pasture-raised poultry schmaltz (fat) and other poultry/birds, game meat fat, organic olive oil, coconut oil, and palm oils.
Eating frequently enough to keep your energy levels even is also critical. For some that may mean more than 3 meals a day, and for others maybe 2 meals daily with a snack, for instance. In the beginning of healing, you may find it necessary to eat smaller meals more often throughout the day to resolve blood sugar fluctuations and maintain energy. As time goes on, you will be able to eat regularly scheduled a day, once again.
Essential fatty acids
Grassfed / grass finished meats, pasture-raised poultry and eggs, organ meats from pasture raised animals/birds, raw dairy foods from healthy animals on pasture, and fermented or regular cod liver oil.
For balancing circadian rhythm and cortisol levels (to manage moods, energy, and weight), Vitamin D for bone, immune, cardiovascular, and digestive health.
Obtain adequate sleep
Go to bed by or before 10 p.m. and wake up naturally to support mood, energy, and weight control. Cortisol levels are affected by sleep patterns and stress response, and your body is better able to produce normal cortisol levels when you obtain adequate sleep and go to bed at the appropriate time to allow your body to normally balance cortisol levels – should be naturally lower at night and higher in the morning upon waking.
Reduce toxins, chemicals, and processed foods, and exposure to personal care/home/commercial products, from your environment and daily habits.
Eat sustainable foods
Grassfed meats and poultry, pasture-raised, soy-free eggs, organic fruits and vegetables, sprouted nuts and seeds, home made broths, soups, sauces, marinades, and salad dressings. For more information on finding these foods in your local area, read this document about Questions to Ask Your Farmer.
Eliminate sugar, processed foods, and refined foods. Read 12 Ways to Eliminate Sugar Cravings.
Food of interest to include
Dandelion or other home-made herbal infusions for balance, detox, and nutrients, Susan Weed.
Fermented foods and beverages for probiotics – yogurt, dairy kefir, sour cream, cultured vegetables and juices, beet kvass, kombucha and water kefir.
Home-made juices – for more information, see Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride’s book Gut and Psychology Syndrome.
Gelatin for soups, smoothies, casseroles, and other foods to help add digestible protein, from Great Lakes (grassfed cows) or Vital Proteins for pasture-sourced and non-GMO collagen protein powder and beef gelatin.
Butter – avoid commercial butter if possible, obtain from local farms who raise cattle on pasture with no antibiotics, hormones, GMOs, pesticide or herbicide residues, or make your own. If buying from the store, look for organic butter from pasture-raised cows.
Coconut oil supports detox in the body, is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, and a good source of saturated fats. Organic or sustainable-sourced recommended. Use in cooking and raw foods such as in smoothies.
Sea salt or Himalayan Salt – Premier Pink Salt, Celtic Sea Salt, Maine Sea Salt, Himalayan Pink Sea Salt – to be used in food, soups, and in water daily to help support adrenal glands and heal adrenal exhaustion. Used in capsules, salt can promote digestive and overall healing as well. If you have never taken capsules in salt, try 1/8 of a capsule to start, and take with filtered water. Gradually work your way up to more in capsules daily, but do so slowly. Some people may feel nauseous at first with salt, and working up slowly is key. You may want to try 1/8 capsule for a week or so and then attempt 1/4 to 1/2 capsule. If you find that you have taken enough salt that causes nausea, drink a few gulps of water and then go back down to your previous dose for a few days to a week.
Limit grains as they contribute to metabolic disorder, weight gain, auto-immune disease, food allergies, and other issues.
If you do consume grains, they should be traditionally prepared with soaking/sprouting, and/or fermentation. Organic almond flour and coconut flour products are good alternatives, and can be used occasionally as a grain replacement.
GMOs are one of the most troublesome issues in our food supply today. These are being linked to metabolic disorder, obesity, food allergies, liver and digestive disorders, infertility, and cancer. For more information, visit the Institute for Responsible Technology. Read 4 Ways to Avoid Consuming GMOs (Genetically-Modified Organisms.
Epsom or magnesium salt baths – a good source of minerals and especially magnesium, absorbed through the skin and which enable the body to detox. Purchase these online or from most health food stores.
Clay baths – Magnetic Clay – this company offers a variety of natural clay baths to help detoxification of environmental, heavy metal, and other toxins. Read the product descriptions or contact the company to learn which bath is optimal for you.
Coffee enemas – Dr. Lawrence Wilson, pioneer in cancer and degenerative chronic illness treatment discusses the importance of aiding the liver in dumping toxins with coffee enemas.
In general, maintaining a regular regimen heavy in supplements isn’t necessarily indicated, these are some excellent products that can be helpful for health compromise and maintaining balance in the body, especially for those needing extra support and aren’t obtaining results through diet. It’s important to get most of your nutrients from food, but due to issues with pollution and soil degradation and other factors, some individuals find these work very well.
Swedish Bitters or Urban Moonshine bitters (organically produced, wildcrafted herbs) – for aiding the body to be able to digest fats, take as directed with meals. 12foru liver tincture is helpful for daily use / support of liver detoxification and function.
Bile salts or hydrochloric acid if you are without gallbladder or have low-stomach acid production. Standard Process Cholacol or Cholacol II for bile salt supplementation, Premier Research HCL for hydrochloric acid. Take bile salts as directed with meals. For hydrochloric acid, here is a helpful document about titrating HCL for your own individual needs from Healing Naturally by Bee. Muscle-testing for these products is useful. Some people benefit from these, and others do not; it’s very individual. If you are taking digestive enzymes, you should not need bile salts.
Therapeutic grade probiotics: Biotics Research, GUTPro, Enzyme Formulations, Formula 17, MegaSporeBiotic, Complete Probiotics from Mercola and HLC High Potency Probiotic Powder by Pharmax (powder forms are especially helpful for individuals suffering from chronic thrush or fungal issues). For additional probiotic support, it is good to alternate these products to ensure diversity and number of bacteria for the immune system. If you are heavily toxic, you can start out taking one per day, away from meals, and increase to 2 – 4 daily until you are healed.
Probiotics for children: HLC Child Chewable Probiotic Tablets by Pharmax or HLC High Potency Probiotic Powder by Pharmax (see link above).
Digestive enzymes – Enzyme Formulations, muscle-testing for these is recommended to determine which variety of enzymes are needed. These are synergistically combined with herbs to detox the digestive system and body, and support immunity function. Developed by Dr. Loomis, chiropractor. Sun Warrior is another excellent brand.
Adrenal supplementation – Dr. Ron’s freeze-dried organs and glands. Although many people can benefit from these, it’s a good idea to be muscle-tested to know if you need them as they are fairly expensive.
Dessicated liver capsules, Dr. Ron’s or Radiant Life, or make your own from Coconut Mama. Almost anyone can benefit from taking these, especially if you aren’t in a position to prepare liver at home, or make your own liver capsules from Coconut Mama.
Cover image by Pietro de Grande on Unsplash https://unsplash.com/photos/T7K4aEPoGGk?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditCopyText