Do Genetics Determine Our Health

June 22, 2020

Many of our clients have a fear of developing the same diseases their family has dealt with. Two nutritionists answer the question they hear so often – do genetics determine our health? If not, is there something we can do about it?

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DAR: Welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight & Wellness. I'm Darlene Kvist and about 30 years ago, I started Nutritional Weight & Wellness with very little financial support. And I remember that well.

CAROLYN: I'm sure you do!

DAR: But with a big desire to help people feel better through their food choices and lifestyle habits. Then about 15 years ago, we started the Dishing Up Nutrition radio show and podcast. I was already at an age when many of my friends were retiring, but not me.

CAROLYN: Of course not!

DAR: I had a strong desire to spread our message of eating real food to all parts of the world. Some people, especially my son, laughed at my dream, but I'm happy to say mission accomplished!

CAROLYN: Absolutely Dar.

DAR: We recently received an email from a delightful woman who listens to Dishing Up Nutrition from India!


DAR: She said, "Thank you. Your simple message of eating real food has changed my life." We love hearing those life changing stories from our listeners. Now you kind of know a little bit more about me. People always want to know about me for some reason. So now, let's learn a little bit more about our cohost Carolyn Hudson. She's been a registered dietitian for many, many years. She'll probably tell you how many. Carolyn and I are the senior members of Nutritional Weight & Wellness team. And Carolyn also has a passion for helping people understand the power of eating real food. Carolyn, tell our listeners just a little bit about yourself, where you went to school, where you've practiced, and your very favorite hobby: scuba diving, right?

CAROLYN: Oh, sure. Good morning, Dar. It's so nice to be here and good morning to all of our listeners out there wherever you are. I actually grew up here in Minnesota, but then I decided to pursue my nutrition degree in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. So my career has really been varied to say the least. I've worked with Canadian Indigenous people in far Northern Ontario communities.

DAR: Oh very interesting.

CAROLYN: Even on an island, in the middle of Hudson's Bay.

DAR: Oh wow.

CAROLYN: Yeah. I had to take a big, um, I had to take a plane, well like a little plane, you know, and it had skis on. It was in the middle of winter. We landed in the middle Hudson's Bay. It was frozen over. And then I loaded into a big, huge bombardier, like a big ski-doo. And they took me to the hospital there on the island.

DAR: So, Carolyn, my first degree was in anthropology.

CAROLYN: Oh, I didn't know that!

DAR: I would have loved that, you know, different cultures.

CAROLYN: It was fascinating, fascinating. I actually got stuck there in a snowstorm for four days, but that was just one of the things that I did. But I also had the opportunity to be the senior director for a very large medical system. It included a large teaching hospital. So I had a dietetic internship program underneath me and I had a senior living center. I had a nursing home and another small community hospital.

DAR: Wow.

CAROLYN: So that was a HUGE system and I have lots of different employees and lots of different unions. So that was, that was very interesting. But more recently I got certified as a well coach. And now I have, Dar, really this is my dream job. It really is, you know, all the wonderful nutritionists and dietitians that I get to work with and I get to work with you. It's just, it's been a dream come true because I really wanted to get back to helping people one on one. And as a senior director, I never got to do that. I was managing people. I wasn't doing nutrition really. So now I get to do that. And then as you mentioned before, one of my hobbies is scuba diving. I love the water. Anything to do with scuba diving. And I started to go down to visit my brother every winter. He lives in Cozumel and I thought, I am going to get certified to dive. I'm watching all these divers down there. So now I love it. I love the underwater life and all the beauty of the coral and the fish and everything. It's really great.

DAR: So if you make an appointment with Carolyn, you got a lot of interesting things that you could talk about. So now today let's go on with our topic, Do Your Genetics Determine Your Health? That's an interesting question actually. Many of our clients say, "my dad had diabetes, so I know I will have diabetes too". So stop and think about that. Do you really believe that statement? Here's another one we hear all the time, "my mother has or had Alzheimer's. So I'm worried I'll get Alzheimer's one day. So is Alzheimer's a genetic disease or is it linked to our food and lifestyle habits? Now that is a new thought for a lot of people, I know.

CAROLYN: It really is. And I hear the same things, "oh, I don't want to get diabetes because you know, my mother, my father, my brother, or whatever has it", so most people do think it's more genetic. So many of my clients also have a fear of Parkinson's because their grandfather had Parkinson's.

DAR: Well, and there's so many more cases of Parkinson's right now.

CAROLYN: Yes. Yeah. I've really been seeing that. One other common belief I hear from clients is "my grandmother had arthritis. So I know I'm going to end up with arthritis." So I want you to ask yourself, does every common chronic disease come from genetics? What do you think?

DAR: Well, we're going to explore this a little bit more. About 15 years ago, I attended a seminar where the pleasure of hearing Dr. Jeffrey Bland make this statement, "90% of our health is from our food choices and lifestyle habits. And 10% is from our genetics." I sat back and I said, "really?!" I remember this very well. You may be wondering, well, who is Dr. Jeffrey Bland? If you've never heard of him, we want to share a little bit about his life and some of his remarkable achievements. Dr. Jeffrey Bland is known as the father of Functional Medicine, which is kind of a medical approach that focuses on prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. Dr. Bland was a university biochemistry professor. He served as the nutritional research director of Linus Pauling Institute Science and Medicine. And he cofounded the Institute for Functional Medicine. In addition to a superior intellect, I mean...amazing intellect and knowledge, Dr. Bland really has a lot of good heart. He's got a lot of feelings for people.

CAROLYN: Dar, I want to just emphasize what you said earlier that 90% of our health is from our food choices and lifestyle habits and only 10% is from our genetics. That's from Dr. Jeffrey Bland. That is amazing. I don't think... I think most people think it's the exact opposite. Right?

DAR: I agree. Yes.

CAROLYN: But in 19, sorry, in 2014, I'm starting to age myself here, Dr. Jeffrey Bland wrote the book *The Disease Delusion: Conquering the Causes of Chronic Illness for a Healthier, Longer, and Happier Life*. In this book, he explained that we have two different types of illnesses. One type of disease comes from an infection, like a bacteria or virus. And until recently with the onset of COVID-19, these diseases were basically controlled with medication, such as a round of antibiotics or from a vaccine. Right? Many of those. With these medications, fewer people actually died of an infection and life was pretty good, right?

DAR: Right, yeah. And then along came a variety of chronic diseases. These chronic conditions and illnesses that make you sick and rarely if ever go away. That's an interesting way to think about it. Once you have diabetes, oh boy, you have to work really hard to get rid of it. So what are some of these diseases? Type two diabetes, gout, high blood pressure, dementia, autoimmune diseases, arthritis, MS, autism, depression, ADHD, asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, macular degeneration, cancer, and the list goes on and on.

CAROLYN: On and on and on, doesn't it?

DAR: Did I catch, what, listeners, did you fit into one of those categories?

CAROLYN: Yeah. That's amazing. That list is really long of those chronic diseases.

DAR: And we work with a lot of those people that have chronic diseases.

CAROLYN: So why do we call these "chronic diseases"? A chronic illness does not heal by itself and, sadly, a chronic illness usually gets worse over time.

DAR: That's another interesting thing to think about.

CAROLYN: That can be really hard. So typically a chronic disease does not have a single cause. Plus a chronic disease, a chronic illness, tends to have more complex symptoms. So do you have one of these chronic diseases? What I found to be really shocking is that 40% of Americans now have some type of chronic disease and Dar it's time for our first break already. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition, brought to you by Nutritional Weight & Wellness. Because of COVID-19 everyone at Nutritional Weight & Wellness continues to practice all of the recommended safety procedures. Our nutrition consultations are being conducted by phone or through a live video appointments rather than in person. You can make an appointment either by phone at (651) 699-3438 or online at If you have questions about how nutrition may help you at this particular time, just call us or email us. Perhaps you even have a question about your health insurance coverage and coming in for an appointment or even about an ingredient one of our recipes. We're going to be very happy to talk to you on the phone and answer all of your questions, so give us a call at (651) 699-3438, and we'll be right back.

DAR: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. This past week, I had a call from a client I worked with maybe three or four years ago, and then out of the blue, she set up an appointment to see me and after all these years. So you had wonder why did she set up an appointment? No, she had not fallen off of a real food plan. She is thinking about having a baby in the next two to three years and wants to make sure her nutrition will provide the best support for her pregnancy.

CAROLYN: That is so cool.

DAR: Yeah. I said you are one smart lady. Because we read about this all the time, don't we Carolyn? Ancient cultures understood how important good nutrition was for a healthy pregnancy and for a healthy baby. So many of our nutritionists and dietitians have firsthand knowledge of how to provide the best support throughout a pregnancy and early childhood feeding. Many of our young nutritionists have one or two or three or four babies. So let us know if you would like to meet with one of our nutrition experts to learn how good nutrition will help you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. I think it's so neat that people are thinking this way now. So just call our office at (651) 699-3438, set up an appointment that's convenient to you and ask your questions.

CAROLYN: So before we went to break I was saying that we found it shocking that 40% of Americans now have some type of chronic disease. That's a lot! 40%!

DAR: That's a lot. So, you know, listeners think about this. Here's a question for you: this 40% of the population having chronic disease caused by their genetics? Or is there something else going on? In the 1900s, two of the chronic diseases that everybody seems like they get is cancer and heart disease, it accounted for about 18% of the population... of the deaths... actually 18% of the deaths. Now in the last, oh, 100 to 120 years, the percentage of deaths from a chronic disease has jumped to 63%.


DAR: They went from 18% up to 63%.

CAROLYN: So that's not genetics.

DAR: No. So perhaps chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease and Alzheimer's and Parkinson's and other autoimmune diseases are not from our genetics, but rather from our lifestyle habits. I think with COVID-19, we're hearing that more and more and more.

CAROLYN: Yes. Yeah, yeah. I was listening to an NPR special - I think it was just yesterday. And they were really talking about that and really, you know, trying to explain, no, it's not, you know, these chronic diseases or people that have these conditions and are more susceptible to getting really ill with COVID-19. It's that they've got these chronic diseases and it's more about their lifestyle and how they've gotten to that place. So how are chronic diseases related to lifestyle habits? Let's look at the relationship of genetics and lifestyle habits in another way. Think about the auto immune condition called celiac disease. I'm sure many of you remember Cassie. She's one of our frequent co-hosts on the show. And she mentioned that she has a gluten sensitivity, but her son actually has celiac disease. Celiac disease is considered a genetic condition, right? But it only when gluten is actually eaten.

DAR: Isn't that interesting?

CAROLYN: Yeah. So if they didn't eat gluten, even though they are celiac, they will not experience the symptoms. So, and I hope I don't mess this name up. It's Italian doctor Alessio Fasano, a pediatric gastroenterologist and director of the Center for Celiac Research, explains it this way: some individuals carry the genes that increase the susceptibility to see celiac, but those individuals carrying the genes will not experience the disease unless or until they actually eat gluten.

DAR: Isn't that neat? That's kind of an interesting thing, isn't it?

CAROLYN: Yes. Yeah. It really is.

DAR: You have that genetic condition, but if you don't eat that product, you don't get it. Amazing!

CAROLYN: Yeah. And I think and I haven't really talked to Cassie about this one. Her son was diagnosed, but I do know that, you know, as a baby, you're not given gluten right away. Right.

DAR: Hopefully!

CAROLYN: Hopefully you're being breastfed. And so there's no gluten, but once that child is introduced to those wheat products or cereals or whatever it happens to be, then they start experiencing the symptoms and there's a failure to thrive, usually in most cases when it's true celiac disease. So when these individuals do eat gluten, the gluten actually becomes a toxin in their body and creates chaos. If they only eat wild rice that contains no gluten, no chaos is created in the body and therefore there's really no damage that gets done.

DAR: Carolyn when you think about that when you were working in those remote villages, if they had a celiac gene and they didn't eat that, they were okay.

CAROLYN: Right, right. Exactly.

DAR: Interesting.

CAROLYN: But you know, if they do eat a slice of bread, especially like whole wheat or a wheat bread, the gluten in that bread becomes a toxin and that's going to wreak havoc in their body. Dr. Fasano's example about celiac disease explains why we may have a genetic susceptibility to the disease but it is our lifestyle and eating habits that actually pull that trigger and create that chaos in our body.

DAR: So I have a personal example of being susceptible to type two diabetes. You know, my mother was diabetic and I believe her father, my grandfather, was diabetic and one of my brothers is diabetic. On the other hand, in my early twenties, I decided I was not going to become diabetic. Now I'm 82 and I'm not, and I have never been, diabetic.


DAR: That's because I got serious about my nutrition. And I mean, I'm very serious about this. And I do check my blood sugars all the time and all the things that you need to do.

CAROLYN: So this was BEFORE you became a nutritionist.

DAR: Yes.

CAROLYN: WAY before.

DAR: Yes.

CAROLYN: So I think that's really important. For people to hear that - that you took this action before you knew, well, all the things you know now about nutrition and you were able to change that course of action.

DAR: Right. And Hey, it hasn't been easy. No, no. Really I was determined not to become type two diabetic. Even 60 years ago, I honestly understood the relationship between eating sugar and processed carbs. I don't know how I knew that, you know, it wasn't in any of my college classes for sure. But it was just living with my parents and my mom and knowing the things so, so sugar and processed carbs increase the risk of type two diabetes. I mean, I think we all know that. I'm sure I have that genetic predisposition or vulnerability of being diabetic, but consciously, I chose not to go there. And I believe many of us have a genetic susceptibility to a chronic disease, but it is what we choose to put into our mouths that will determine if we get one of these conditions. And I think we must have a break.

CAROLYN: Yep, you are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. If you're struggling with joint discomfort, I want to suggest two very beneficial supplements: one or two scoops of Key Collagen and two capsules of Joint Revive. The good news is you can save 15% on both.

DAR: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. Last night, I was on the phone with my 17 year old granddaughter Willow. And of course I think she's special. She's my granddaughter!

CAROLYN: Of course!

DAR: So I asked her, "do you listen to the podcast?" And she said, "I listened to podcast all the time." So then I asked her, "do you listen to the Dishing Up Nutrition podcast?" I know that she is sensitive to gluten grains. And I thought a little education goes a long way. She said, "is your podcast on Spotify?" I said, "yes, it is." Then Willow replied, "Okay. I will listen." I think any of our Dishing Up Nutrition podcasts would be a great way for you to help your kids or your entire family get some real food nutrition education. So if you do that, let me know how it goes!

CAROLYN: Yeah. Yeah. I have clients that say that they turn it on and listen, especially like when they're making a meal or whatever, and the kids will come in and of course they listen a little bit. Right? So they pick things up. So before we went to break, we were talking about type two diabetes.

DAR: We talk all about that a lot, don't we?

CAROLYN: Yep and blood sugar problems. And they've been in the news a lot lately because of COVID-19. Because people with diabetes face a higher chance of experiencing some of those serious complications from COVID-19. When diabetics do not manage their diabetes well, and they experienced that roller coaster blood sugar, they are generally at a higher risk for a number of diabetes related complications. So what we do and what we eat, impact how our genes express themselves. Either in a positive manner or in a negative manner.

DAR: Okay. So let's, let's dig in a little bit more on this topic. Judith Finlayson and she was actually on our show at one time. She's the author of *You Are What Your Grandparents Ate* - said it very nicely. I love the way she wrote, "well, our DNA doesn't change, but stressors, including poor nutrition"... So she connects poor nutrition with a stressor. "When you had poor nutrition, it can spark a reaction the change how our genes express themselves, increasing the risk for a wide variety of chronic diseases." From heart disease and diabetes to all kinds of cancer.

CAROLYN: Yeah. It's amazing. So let's go back to the thoughts and writings of Dr. Jeffrey Bland. He said, "according to the World Health Organization, the cost of chronic disease will hit.."...get this..."$200 billion by the year 2030".

DAR: That's not very... That's 10 years from now.

CAROLYN: Yeah. 200 billion. And that is mostly due to heart disease, type two diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases like asthma or chronic kidney disease, cancer, and dementia.

DAR: And who would ever think of connecting dementia with their nutrition.

CAROLYN: Yeah. Right. It's amazing.

DAR: Yes. So it may surprise you to learn that dementia may be the most costly of all chronic diseases. And I can understand that. So in 2012, over $200 billion was spent in the U.S. on research to find a way to treat dementia. But as yet, no effective drug for the management of dementia has been developed. On the other hand, there's a lot of research, a variety of clinical studies indicate that lifestyle changes can improve mental functioning. You know, even right here in our state, a study by the Mayo Clinic found that early intervention to stop negative lifestyle habits and replace them with positive lifestyle habits delays the onset of dementia. If you're 82 and you don't get it for another 20 years, you're pretty...

CAROLYN: You're pretty safe, huh?! Well, I can look at my mom. She's 92. She's not experiencing ANY signs of dementia or memory loss or anything.

DAR: Isn't that beautiful? That's great.

CAROLYN: Yeah. I want to be her! So I've been teaching nutrition for about 40 years and I believe more people are starting to connect the reality that to have the best health possible, they need to eat real food. And by real food I mean like protein from some of those grass fed animals. Vegetables. Not so much the bread or rolls. And good natural fats like butter and olive oil and avocado oil and coconut oil. That's just to name a few. And they really do need to avoid those refined damaged fats, such as soybean oil or corn oil or cotton seed oil or canola oil. All of those are highly processed and refined. So we call those damaged fats, don't we Dar?

DAR: Yes we do. You know what came to my mind when you were talking about that - I was thinking of the people that drive through the fast food restaurants and get French fries.

CAROLYN: Oh, and have you seen the lines at those fast food restaurants lately? Oh my goodness.

DAR: So you know that French fries are cooked probably in either soybean oil or corn oil. And the oil is used over and over and over. And then potatoes. If you have a little bit of potato...

CAROLYN: That's okay!

DAR: But French fries... you probably have, you know, French fries turn into sugar. I mean, that's something that people just don't get. French fries turn into sugar.

CAROLYN: I had a friend asked me once, "how much sugar is in this?" And I said, "oh, you really don't want to know". But I will tell you two French fries are going to equal about a teaspoon of sugar. So.

DAR: Yes. And then it's cooked in bad fat. So too much sugar, too much bad fat. Bad for your brain. Simply. Very simple. There are more than a hundred confirmed auto immune diseases. Wow.

CAROLYN: A hundred. That's amazing.

DAR: Actually about 50 million people, Americans, suffer from at least one autoimmune disease. So maybe ask you a question listeners. Are you one of those who suffer from an auto immune disease? In comparison, and I love this, 12 million Americans are suffering from cancer and 25 million from heart disease. This may be a little hard for people to believe but autoimmune diseases are directly linked to diet and lifestyle habits. And of course it's linked to heart disease and it's linked to type two diabetes. It's all linked to our diet and lifestyle habits.

CAROLYN: Back to that 90%, right? Is diet and lifestyle and only 10% of genetics. So if we could really drive that point home to our listeners, maybe we will, you know, spark an interest.

DAR: And then help people make that conscious decision that they are not going to go down that path if they have that genetic susceptibility to some kind of disease. And all we have to do is look at what our parents and grandparents had and we know we might have that susceptibility, but we don't have to go down their path.

CAROLYN: Yeah, no, we don't. So it's really about what we're choosing to eat for the most part. That's a lifestyle habit. You know, I choose to eat real proteins, healthy proteins, usually from grass fed animals. I choose lots of vegetables, lots and lots of vegetables, and I choose healthy fats. So a good protein, good carbs - those vegetable carbs - and healthy fats.

DAR: Now I bet, Carolyn, I bet your mom eats that way too.

CAROLYN: Yeah. Yeah, she absolutely does.

DAR: And she's 92. Lives in her own home.

CAROLYN: Doesn't have any help.

DAR: Takes care of other people.

CAROLYN: Yes! Oh my gosh. I can't, I, I she's, she's one amazing woman. I got to say that. Yeah.

DAR: I think maybe she should come and teach some of our classes.

CAROLYN: She did come and sit in on one of my classes not that long ago and she really enjoyed it. So it was really fun. I was really happy to have her in my audience that day. So in reality, auto immune diseases are caused by a confused immune system. That's an interesting way to think about that, isn't it? Researchers believe that three key factors may be involved. The first factor is that you may have this genetic susceptibility. Okay. But you don't have to go down that path. Secondly, you may get an infection or you may experience some kind of environmental trigger, such as eating gluten.

DAR: Or, or you know what, Carolyn, when you were saying that, one of the things that I was thinking is, you know, the stress that people have been going through lately might be enough of a trigger, an environmental trigger.


DAR: I think you mentioned something about people that are in a longterm facilities and they've had no visitors and are people dying of loneliness? So that's what we mean by environmental triggers or conditions.

CAROLYN: Yeah. And I think it's really important to think back. I know whenever I get an autoimmune disease person, I always ask, "where, when did this start and how do you think it started?' And we usually can go back to an infection or some kind of trigger. So it's already for our third break here. So you are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. Next Saturday, I think many of you may want to tune in because Kara and Melanie will be sharing valuable information about incontinence. Nearly half of the women over age 50 experience urine leakage, but haven't shared their problem with their doctor or probably anyone else. Incontinence seems to be a hidden condition. So tell your friends about the show because they may be experiencing the same problem and we will be right back.

DAR: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. Yesterday I read that 65% of the U.S. population fear getting COVID-19. I can believe that.

CAROLYN: Yeah, I can too. That's a lot, but...

DAR: So you have to ask yourself, what could you do to support your immune system? So we thought we'd share a few things that we have recommended to our clients. I say make sure your vitamin D level is 60 or above. Now that's pretty high, but it's protective. A sufficient level of vitamin D is really critical for a well functioning brain and body. Both.

CAROLYN: And Dar, I read that the Scandinavian countries who all take a vitamin D supplement... because they're pretty far North.. they are less affected... have less severe cases of COVID-19 and they're speculating it's because they take vitamin D supplements and their vitamin D level is high.

DAR: That's easy. That's a no brainer. Just get some.

CAROLYN: And we live in Minnesota, we don't get enough sun exposure.

DAR: So the other thing to do is to eat 12 to 14 ounces of quality protein. Quality protein builds your immune function and it supports your moods and your memory. So here's another one: I recommend taking my favorite supplement, three Bifido Balance capsules, three times a day. Three before breakfast, three before lunch and, three before you go to bed. A good immune system starts in your gut or your intestinal track. And then sleep seven and a half to nine hours most nights.

CAROLYN: I've been hearing people are getting a little more sleep during this time. So I think that that's good. Also you need to eliminate or avoid eating high sugar processed foods. You may want to bake those brownies or chocolate chip cookies, but then eating them can actually reduce your immune system for several hours. You should also think about eating frequently. I say to eat four to six times a day to maintain that balance blood sugar. High blood sugar is a risk factor as we already talked about that. Type two diabetes or diabetes, it's a risk factor for complications if you do get COVID-19. Take about 400 to 600 milligrams of magnesium glycinate daily at bedtime. I love my magnesium. I don't even think about going to bed without it. And then taking extra vitamin C. You could take 3000 to 5000 milligrams daily to help with that immune system.

DAR: So these are just a few of the things that we recommend to people. There are many other ways to support your immune function, such as avoid drinking alcohol, because you know what, realistically alcohol is not a health food. So it is now time to be very proactive. I mean I think we have to really get with this. In the caring for your body, your brain and your overall health. This was a great time to focus on this. And I know some of my clients really have taken this seriously. They're really focusing on it.

CAROLYN: So before we went to break, we were talking about the three different factors that can lead to an autoimmune disease. The first one is your genetics. You have a genetic predisposition and then you can, the second one would be a trigger. Like it could be an infection or an environmental trigger, like stress that we were talking about. And the third factor is your diet and lifestyle.

DAR: So if we really get honest with ourselves, every one of us has a tremendous amount of control over what we eat and how we live. That's an interesting thought for people I think. We all know that a lack of sleeping five hours or less a night has been associated with development of Alzheimer's disease. But some people still resist developing the eight hour a night sleep habit.

CAROLYN: Yeah. I still have clients that say, "oh no, I've never slept eight hours. I only need like five." I try my best to convince them and usually they do come along, but it takes awhile. So most of the diseases that land people in the hospital or that result in a disability, are lifestyle or food related. Again, back to that 90%. Sadly, most diseases associated with aging are also derived from eating bad food, that process food, that junk food, or the Standard American Diet. When will we start realizing that perhaps the most powerful medicine in the world is food. Yes, there are inflammatory foods, such as sugar and bread and oatmeal and pizza, chips and wine, beer, popcorn bagels, fast food, brownies. The list is endless.

DAR: And you know what you just said oatmeal. And I think that always shocks people.

CAROLYN: Yeah. Well, we've eaten too much of it. Maybe a little bit might be okay, but people are generally eating too much. It used to be one of my favorite foods. So I don't, I really don't eat oatmeal anymore at all.

DAR: You know, there's another hand. There are foods we consider to be anti-inflammatory. So we want to concentrate on those foods, some of these foods, and we've talked about this many times: it's like grass fed meat, wild caught fish, vegetables, vegetables, vegetables, and more vegetables plus healthy fats like butter, olive oil, coconut oil, avocados, olives, coconut milk, avocado oil, all are great fats to work with.

CAROLYN: Some of you may remember Dr. Barry Sears. He's the author of *The Zone*, which he wrote 30 years ago. 30 years ago. Wow. I remember him saying food is the most powerful drug we will encounter. You just heard what Dr. Barry Sears wrote 30 years ago. And you know what we say every single week on Dishing Up Nutrition. So eating real food is not new, a new concept to all of you listeners out there. It still stands as the most powerful thing available to us. More powerful than any drug that has ever been developed.

DAR: I think that is a major concept to think about food. What you're putting in your mouth is more powerful than any medicine that they have developed at this point. And that certainly is for COVID-19. We know that they're struggling with something for that. And they haven't been very successful in finding anything.

CAROLYN: And most of the drugs I feel that are out there, aren't really....they're not curing the underlying problem right? They're just in many cases like Harper medication, they're just masking the problem and causing a whole nother set of problems down the road.

DAR: So even if you think going back to that whole story about celiac disease. If people don't eat gluten, they don't continue to damage their intestinal track.

CAROLYN: Right. Exactly. So I think that kind of wraps it up for us today, Dar. It's been a great, a great show, I think. So our goal here at Nutritional Weight & Wellness is to help each and every person experience better health through eating real food. It's a simple yet powerful message. Eating real food is life changing. So thank you all for joining us today. Be well and be safe.

DAR: Carolyn. Thank you. It was a great show.

CAROLYN: Great show. Thanks Dar.

DAR: Thank you.

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