What is the scoop on soy?

Written by: Rebecca Baird, August 11, 2010
Soy has been viewed by many health professionals and registered dietitians as the ultimate protein source for nutritional health, but new research is showing that this assumption may be far from the truth. According to the American Heart Association, supplementing the diet with soy protein has no significant benefit. According to the American Cancer Society “soy protein could increase cancer risk in ways that are not yet understood. Phytochemicals, naturally occurring plant chemicals (isoflavones) that are present in soy, may affect the way cancer cells grow. ..Soy might act in the same way as estrogens to increase the growth of estrogen-responsive cancers, such as breast or endometrial cancer.”

The results of studies concerning the link between soy consumption and male infertility have been interesting and revealing as well. A study done in 2005 by Dr. Lynn Fraser and her team of UK scientists revealed that isoflavones (genistein) could damage human sperm. At a conference in Copenhagen Dr. Fraser pointed out that, “she had carried out previous research on mouse sperm that suggested similar findings, and that tests on human sperm had proved it was 10 to 100 times more sensitive to (isflavones) genistein. ‘Human sperm are responding to very low concentrations – well within the amounts that have been measured in people’s blood’, she said. The findings might suggest that women who eat soya-based products and legumes should change their diet… prior to conception.” Soy beans contain pytoestrogens which is a natural defense mechanism for the plant. Pytoestrogens when consumed by predators, limit a herbivores reproduction. Thus, the predator’s population decreases and more plants prosper. So it makes sense that human sperm (and the reproductive system) would be adversely affected by the consumption of soy products. A study published in Environmental Health Perspectives states that, “diverse animals such as cattle, mice, and quail have been shown to suffer reproductive failure due to dietary phytoestrogens.”

Some studies show that fermented soy foods are the only foods which will not contribute to health problems but will in fact promote health. In Asia, the traditional fermented soy foods are considered to have more health promoting benefits when consumed in moderate amounts than the super-processed soy products that are consumed in the West. For example, a study (1) of the culturing method involved in the production of the Japanese traditional food miso, came to the conclusion that the culturing process itself led to a “lower number of cancers per animal” and a “lower growth rate of cancer compared to controls.” The researchers also indicated that it was not the presence of any specific nutrient that was cultured along with the soyabean paste but rather the cultured soy medium itself that was responsible for the health benefits associated with miso consumption.

(1) Baggott JE, Ha T, Vaughn WH et al. Effect of miso and NaCl on DMBA-induced rat mammary tumors. Nutr Cancer 1990; 14(2): 103-9.

Amino Acids Therapy “Study” ≈ Week 6

Written by: Rebecca Baird, August 5, 2010

This week was perhaps the most productive thus far. I have more energy to do what I want and need to do, less pain, better memory and learning capabilities, and generally have an overall feeling of wellbeing and calmness. I am amazed at the amount of housework I can do without feeling drained. It had been so long since I felt good enough to do normal activities that I had forgotten how much I really love being super active. Before beginning the amino acid therapy I would be able to be active one day, but the next day (and sometimes for 2 or 3 days after) I would feel muscle soreness and physically exhausted. Those days are gone and I am so thankful!

The week also brought with it a realization that we really don’t have many markets in the area where we can buy non-toxic meats. What I mean is that lately every time I buy meat, especially chicken breasts, (frozen or fresh) the entire family suffers symptoms of some sort of food poisoning. The symptoms resemble that of salmonella, but because we take the meat directly from the refrigerator/freezer to the heated pan, and we have been trained professionally in the safe handling of meat, the contamination seems like it would have to be coming from the processing plant. I am looking for a way to limit meat consumption in order to eliminate food borne illnesses. I have looked into organic meats but the cost is incredible and would bankrupt us in a short period of time. There are alternatives to meat consumption and I plan on finding the best way to receive all of the nutrition needed with very little meat. I will keep you posted on the new recipes as I continue my quest.

This week also brought with it some new studies which I am very interested in. The most significant information was that from researching the work of Dr. Johanna Budwig and her proven cure, yes I said cure, for cancer. Dr. Budwig’s treatment is simple and the success rate is astounding. I have more research to do on this subject and will keep you posted.

Why is our food making us sick?

Written by: Rebecca Baird, August 4, 2010

In March of 2009 Russian authorities “suspended imports from three U.S. poultry processing plants due to drug residue findings, possibly from antibiotics or anti-parasitic drugs.” (Combs, 2009) Tyson Foods, Peco Foods, and Sanderson Farms were not able to export their poultry to Russia because of these drug residue findings. Russia also stated on January 21, 2010 that they have “banned imports from US suppliers on concerns related to the use of chlorine in treating the meat; a practice routinely used in the United States to kill bacteria that can cause food poisoning.” (Poultry Med, 2010) The Russian government introduced new laws “strictly limiting the amount of chlorine that can be used in the processing of poultry, effectively banning all imports from the United States.” (Financial, 2010)

According to an article by Christine Lepisto, owner of Chemical Safety Consulting, many European countries are having a great deal of difficulty with United States approved foods. She cites 7 U.S. approved foods which have been banned by the European Union, but there may be many more on the horizon as the European community becomes aware of toxins which are present in U.S. imports. Some of these banned foods include genetically modified foods, such as soybeans, corn, cotton, canola, sugar beets, potatoes, and tomatoes. According to an article in Healing Daily, “In 1999, front-page headline stories in the British press revealed Rowett Institute scientist Dr. Arpad Pusztai’s explosive research findings that genetically engineered potatoes, spliced with DNA from the snowdrop plant and a commonly used viral promoter, the Cauliflower Mosaic Virus (CaMv), are poisonous to mammals. Genetically engineered-snowdrop potatoes, found to be significantly different in chemical composition from regular potatoes, damaged the vital organs and immune systems of lab rats which were fed the genetically engineered potatoes.”  This is just one instance of the dangers of genetically modified foods.

A quote from the USDA states that, “United States consumers eat many products derived from these crops—including some cornmeal, oils, sugars, and other food products—largely unaware of their GE (genetically engineered) content. Despite the rapid increase in the adoption of GE corn, soybean, and cotton varieties by U.S. farmers, questions remain regarding the health impact of agricultural biotechnology.”

As for the use of chlorine in our foods and water supply, according to a resolution, dated September 8, 1998, by the city and county of San Francisco, “The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has found dioxin (a toxic byproduct of chlorine) to be 300,000 times more potent as a carcinogen than DDT.” The findings went on the explain that dioxin is an endocrine disrupting chemical affecting thyroid and steroid hormones and almost every hormone system examined has been shown to be altered by dioxin in some cell type tissue, is linked to endometriosis, immune system impairment, diabetes, neurotoxicity, birth defects (including fetal death), decreased fertility, testicular atrophy and reproductive dysfunction in both women and men. Dioxin exposure is significant…over 90% of human exposure to dioxin occurs through diet. Studies have shown that significant amounts of dioxin have been found in the breast milk of women primarily from industrialized countries.

The simple solution to this problem is to only eat organic foods, filter your water carefully, and never use bleach for anything. The problem is that some of our “organic” foods are contaminated just because the water used to irrigate crops is chlorinated. It is no wonder that the European Union has banned many U.S. products because of the levels of chlorine, insecticides, and antibiotics found in the foods.

Amino Acids Therapy “Study” ≈ Week 5

Written by: Rebecca Baird, July 28, 2010

This week brought with it some enormous struggles, mostly emotional and relational. The benefit ride, “Kelly’s Ride”, was held on Saturday, July 24th, and was perhaps one of the most difficult days, emotionally, which I have had since Kelly was killed. The ride was a wonderful success and will help Kelly’s daughter Sabrina, with many of her needs including braces and college. I had not been able to go to the ride because I live 3,000 miles away from Maine, where the ride was taking place. Everything was fine until someone posted a picture of Kelly’s grave site. That was it for me. I felt that overwhelming feeling of great loss all over again. I am very thankful that God showed me how amino acids affect my emotions and how to combat even the most emotional times. I doubled up on the calming aminos and the aminos which help regain rational thinking; Acetyl-L-carnitine (mental clarity), DLPA (used to handle stress), L-Glutamine (sustain mental ability), L-Lysine (improves stress tolerance), Theanine (promotes relaxation without causing drowsiness, improves learning), and Taurine (calming neurotransmitter which stabilizes the heartbeat and electrical activity of the nerves, improves mental performance).

The result was most interesting. I began to feel better and think more rationally about things and was able to put things back into perspective. The clarity and reaffirmation that God is in control and everything happens for a reason came rushing back to me like a long lost friend. I still feel a great sense of loss, but it is not debilitating.

On a different note, one of the great things that happened this week happened while researching all of the amino acids and their effect they have on our bodies. Several of the amino acids actually metabolize fats! Do I hear an Amen?! Taurine is a fat metabolizer, L-tyrosine reduces body fat, L-ornithine decreases body fat, L-lysine improves fat metabolism, L-carnitine metabolizes fat, L-arginine decreases body fat, and DLPA regulates metabolism.

Another finding was that some of the amino acids actually promote the formation of collagen, which promotes healthy skin, hair, and nails. L-Arginine increases collagen, L-Cysteine aids in the formation of collagen, L-Lysine forms collagen, and L-Proline is essential for the synthesis of collagen. Since I, and most women, want beautiful, young looking skin, this is a really great, natural, way to increase collagen production.

Amino Acids Therapy “Study” ≈ Week 4

Written by: Rebecca Baird, July 22, 2010

Using myself in this study has been a very interesting experience, to say the least. This last week I ran out of DL-Phenalanine and the result was astounding. I felt ok for at first, but then it hit me and the result was very remarkable. On Tuesday I felt pretty good, my first day without DLPA, but then on Wednesday (yesterday) I felt this kind of pseudo depression coming on as a result of the return of increasing bodily pain. As I considered my feelings and really took hold of what was happening, I found that my pain was not as bad as it had been before I began taking the DLPA, but because I had been pain free for three weeks, the return of the pain was debilitating. It was truly a great experiment, even though unintentional, to see what happens to my mind and body when one of the essential supplements is not present. The effect on my husband and son was not, or didn’t seem, as overwhelming as the effect it had on me.

When the package containing the DLPA was left at my door I was so excited I could hardly contain myself. It was like a ray of hope streaming down from heaven. Within 20 minutes of taking one dose of the supplement I was feeling no pain at all. The reason for this is because DL-Phenylalanine is used by the brain to produce norepinephrine a neurotransmitter depleted by stress, caffeine, nicotine, pollution, and some pharmacological and recreational drugs.  According to Dusty R. Green, M.Ed., research scientist and author, “DL-Phenylalanine… helps replace dopamine, the neurotransmitter responsible for feelings associated with sexual pleasure, confidence, and euphoria. Without DLPA (regardless of whether you use ephedra or not), the adrenals are over-stressed due to stress, caffeine, nicotine, pollution, and some pharmacological and recreational drugs.  Those of you who regularly take DLPA with your coffee understand the meaning of feeling “refreshed and energetic.” By consuming DLPA, you are helping your body restore and balance all 3 major neurotransmitters nicely — serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine.

Since amino acids compete with one another through the blood brain barrier, begin taking 500 mg on an empty stomach as soon as you awake each morning for a week.  Wait 15-20 minutes before eating or taking any other supplements since they may contain other competing amino acids.  Each week increase the dose by 500 mg until you max-out at 2,000-2,100 mg per day (depending on the form you take — caps or the plus powder).  This amount appears to be all we need to keep our adrenals fresh and functioning at optimum levels.  Do not take it late in the evening — you may have trouble falling asleep.” I have also found that taking the 500mg two times a day is ample for me. If I take more I begin to feel overly energized.

Stay tuned for more…… 🙂

Babies Need Nutritious Food Too……..

Written by: Rebecca Baird, July 19, 2010

Babies need a great deal of nutrition. They are growing at such a rapid rate that they need the proper nutrition to ensure that their bodies grow properly. There are several good baby foods on the market which are organic, but the best way is to make your own. It is less expensive and you know exactly what goes into the process. Babies usually begin with cereal mixed with organic baby formula or breast milk. For baby cereal, organically grown quinoa is a great place to start and is very nutritious as well. Quinoa is very high in complete protein; it contains all nine of the essential amino acids. It also is high in lysine; essential for tissue growth and repair. Quinoa is also a great source of iron, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, folate, B6, B12, vitamin A, calcium, potassium, selenium, Omega-3 fatty acids, and Riboflavin. (1) It seems to me like Quinoa is possibly one of the best sources of nutrition available to our babies.

To make organic quinoa baby cereal: Place quinoa in blender, or coffee grinder, blend (or grind) until smooth, set aside. Meanwhile, place a pot containing 1-2 cups of filtered water on high heat and bring to a boil (I would try starting with one cup water and then add formula or breast milk to thin it out). Whisk ¼ cup of ground quinoa into the boiling water, reduce heat and keep whisking until thickened. Cool to a comfortable temperature; mix with formula, mashed bananas, or other mashed fresh peeled fruit. Store unused, ground quinoa in an airtight container in the freezer to prevent the oils in the quinoa from becoming rancid.

(1) WH Foods (2001-2010) Quinoa: In depth nutrition analysis.

Amino Acids Therapy “Study” ≈ Week 3

Written by: Rebecca Baird, July 18, 2010

The third week of my study has been a good one and full of energy and focus. This week I included a complete amino acid supplement to my nightly routine. This worked like a charm to help me sleep through the night. I could hardly believe it the first night. I took the amino acid complex and then about 15 or 20 minutes later I was so ready to sleep. We usually stay up reading and praying for about an hour before we are finally ready to sleep, but not with the amino complex. Man, that stuff is great! It made me feel so comfortable, that is the only word that really explains the relaxed feeling that I got. Usually I am thinking of what I am going to do the next day, or what I forgot to do that day, or what could I have done for Kelly, but when I take the amino complex it is just plain sleep time. No negative thoughts or regrets, just the comfortable understanding that I have done all I can, “In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God” Philippians 4:6.

Another thing that I realized was that I have much more focus now. I worked on the charity website all week and got most of it completed as well as getting the product vendors in line and formulating some products of our own. That is a really big deal because I have been unable to really focus on anything for more than an hour at a time. I give credit to the L-glutamine for this (and of course, the grace of our good God for enlightening me). L-glutamine is very important in brain metabolism. It is food for the brain, transports potassium across the blood-brain barrier, and detoxifies the brain. L-glutamine sustains mental ability. That explains my increased ability to focus and work so hard on the web page.

As I journeyed through this week, I was aware of the increasing number of extremely overweight people and also aware of the real desire I have to help them get healthy. I would love to just go and gather up a group of people and get them started on amino acid therapy. I mean really, just for a week, to let them see the difference in the way they feel and their energy levels. What a difference they would see and feel. They would never want to go back! This is a journey to wellness, in a very real way. I am thinking about offering a challenge to people who are sick and tired of being sick and tired. My challenge is this: I will provide you with a week’s supply of amino acid supplements, free of charge; you take them faithfully, and see how you feel at the end of that week. I wonder if anyone would take that challenge. Let me know your thoughts…..

Also, as I spoke of earlier, the website is up and running. If you would like to purchase any natural, organic cosmetics or organic clothing, get amino acid supplements, or just make a donation to children who have lost a parent due to domestic violence you can go to Sabrina Marie Naturals and check out what is available there. While you are there make sure to click on the Kelly’s Kids page. Kelly’s kids is our way of giving help to the hurting, healing to the broken hearted, and direction to the lost. You can make a donation to help children who have lost a parent as a result of domestic violence, heal and find new direction in their altered lives. We will provide the resources these kids need to help them put their lives back together. These resources include, but are not limited to, counseling, clothing, alternative school options, travel, funeral arrangements, and care packages. Please feel free to peruse through the pages and let me know what you would like to see offered there. Thanks!