Today, we welcome guest author Teri Cochrane, CN, CCP, author of The Wildatarian Diet: Living as Nature Intended. Teri has a private clinical practice as an integrative practitioner and thought leader in individualized health care. Listen to her conversation with Dave on Bulletproof Radio about turning genes on and off with food.
Are You Eating the “Wrong Right Foods”?
by Teri Cochrane, CN, CCP
Did you know that chicken and broccoli could actually be contributing to a variety of conditions such as Hashimoto’s, ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome? Are you aware that almond milk or a black bean & spinach burrito can correlate with kidney stones, gallstones and even worse, a mental health disorder?
Unprecedented changes in soil and agricultural practices have caused unprecedented changes in our internal biological terrain. What you eat has to change also. Let’s talk mycotoxins, oxalates, sulfur and amyloids. It’s a whole new ballgame when it comes to trying to discern what causes your body to turn on itself. We are now recognizing that healthy foods may actually be poison on your plate.
My Amazon Bestselling new release book, The Wildatarian Diet – Living as Nature Intended, explains how healthy foods may be anything but healthy – what I call the “wrong right food”. How and why is this happening? Many factors contribute, but at its core, the disruption of our internal terrain – our microbiome – throws off your body, making it more difficult for you to break down, absorb and metabolize whole categories of food.
Chemicals in agriculture: pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides
The chemicalization of food has a lot to do with this. Pesticides, herbicides and fungicides and especially glyphosate, a chemical found in the most widely used herbicides, have had deleterious effects on our food supply. They are literally changing our biome and impairing sulfur, protein, and oxalate metabolism.
The result – those of us who are genetically vulnerable can no longer efficiently process these otherwise healthy foods. As an example, a combination of genetic predisposition, a history of fungal or bacterial infections, and antibiotic use might mean that a healthy spinach almond black bean combo may tax your body in negative ways. And what about crucifers, so popular in healthy eating today? These high sulfur foods can be anything but healthy for many for whom genetics and the state of their biome preclude these foods from breaking them down properly. Myself included!
Mycotoxins from mold
Mycotoxins, byproducts of mold, are also increasingly found in your diet – mostly because of the way commercial agriculture stores and transports food. Longer shelf life gives foods ample opportunity to grow molds that wreak havoc on your body. Other foods such as peanuts, and corn, many of which are staples in a typical western diet, are naturally prone to mold and therefore high in mycotoxins.
Amyloids, aka misfolded proteins, in foods
Another important category of “wrong right food” has to do with amyloids. You may have heard the term as it relates to plaques in the brain linked to Alzheimer’s and other cognitive dysfunctions. Amyloids are truncated or misfolded proteins which in the case of Alzheimer’s aggregate into plaques literally “gumming” up the brain. What you may not know is that amyloids can also contribute to kidney disease, cancer, autoimmunity, infertility and a host of other chronic immune conditions.
And guess what? Amyloids are not only produced in the body, they are also found in our food supply. Researchers from Cambridge and Japan found that animals raised in crowded, unhealthy conditions build amyloids in their tissues. This is especially true for chicken and beef. These amyloids cannot be broken down by cooking, so when we eat these foods, we are increasing the body’s amyloid burden.
What happens when you eat amyloids?
Proteins are broken down into amino acids and recombined into enzymes, antibodies, and hormones. Proteins are the building blocks for organs and tissues. When we consume amyloids, the human body may not recognize their fragmented and altered structure – leaving them to wreak havoc in the body. New research shows that amyloids are linked to innumerable chronic diseases.
The discovery of amyloids and their significance in contributing to disease states has revolutionized my approach to looking at the body, food and health. The Wildatarian® lifestyle I recommend aims to reduce dietary amyloids and shift toward proteins which nourish and heal. It aims to refocus the diet away from foods which despite what nature intended, can be devastating to our health.
Amyloids, mycotoxins, oxalates, sulfur-containing foods… The potentially pathogenic effects of these foods are varied. Some feed biofilms — the protective sheath that harmful pathogens make to shield themselves from your immune system — making it harder for our body to go after pathogens such as viruses, bacteria and fungi. Others impair neurotransmitter production, contributing to leaky gut and affecting mood. And ultimately, the “wrong right foods” have epigenetic effects, changing gene expression in unfavorable ways.
The result? A perfect storm for chronic illness.
Want to know what foods may be making you feel off, or contributing to chronic conditions? Which foods are the “wrong right foods” for you? It’s highly individual. Take my Wild Type Quiz and figure out which healthy foods might actually be contributing to whatever it is you are dealing with – whether its your inability to build muscle, arthritis, anxiety, IBS, hormone imbalance, autoimmunity, Lyme, or a host of other ailments. Then, find your path to vibrancy by eating to your genetic blueprint and current state of health.
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