Food & Supplements to Ease Chronic Pain

November 23, 2020

Listen in as two nutritionists share what foods contribute to pain and inflammation and what can help bring relief – coincidentally those same foods weaken the immune system and accelerate aging. A triple threat best avoided to say the least. Listen in to learn more.

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Transcript:

BRITNI: Welcome to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight and Wellness. If you are experiencing chronic pain, such as a chronic knee pain, chronic shoulder pain, chronic back pain or chronic headaches, you will want to stay tuned today because we are going to share information about food and supplements to ease chronic pain. I am Britni Vincent, a Registered and Licensed Dietitian; also a mother of an almost nine month-old: hard to believe. And that has brought our family to a total of six: my son, my husband, two cats and a dog; a full household.

CAROLYN: Yeah!

BRITNI: So before I had my son, I was working full time, busy counseling clients, teaching classes, hosting Dishing Up Nutrition. And now of course I'm still seeing clients, but fewer than before, because I'm working three to four days a week. And this allows me to still prioritize my nutrition, food prep for my health, but my husband's health, and of course my son's health, especially now that he's eating solid food.

CAROLYN: Oh, and you're at home? You've been working at home right Britni?

BRITNI: Most of the time. Yeah.

CAROLYN: So that kind of makes it easier. That's what I've been hearing from some of my clients.

BRITNI: The ones that are still cooking. And you know, in the past I've had my own aches and pains, but as I learned how to eat better, those aches and pains, eventually they disappeared. And joining me this morning is Carolyn Hudson. She has her own story of aches and pains.

CAROLYN: Yes, Britni, I do because you know what? I'm a few years older than you. So I've had a lot more opportunity to experience those troublesome pains spots. You know, I'm also a Registered and Licensed Dietitian and I've been working in the field of nutrition for close to 40 years. So I actually received my dietetics and nutrition degree in Canada. And my second job actually was working with very remote villages where my clients ate foods that were really very different from what I grew up eating. So these were indigenous communities where in many cases, there, there weren't any roads.

BRITNI: Yeah, oh wow.

CAROLYN: I would have to fly in to these places.

BRITNI: Oh my gosh.

CAROLYN: And it wasn't like a jet.

BRITNI: I can imagine it was not that luxurious.

CAROLYN: It was a little puddle jumper. In some cases they had skis on and we would land, you know, on a lake or if it was frozen, which most of the time, half of the time I was landing on frozen lakes or whatever.

BRITNI: What an experience.

CAROLYN: Yeah it really was. But so they didn't have roads. And so the way they ate, of course, they had things like moose, caribou, whitefish, and walleye, blueberries, cranberries, and of course, many other native plants, you know, because actually in many ways they really understood the foods that supported good health. No one really dieted. They ate foods. They foraged. They fished. They hunted, and they did eat all of these foods that really supported their health. Of course they didn't follow any kind of diet or meal plan. They just had to eat what was available at that time to them. So today, Britni and I want to share some foods that increase pain and inflammation and basically the foods that you should eliminate from your menu. We also want to share foods you should add into your meal plan so you can have your very own kind of “get out of pain card” for yourself.

BRITNI: I love that idea. I think that idea can be motivating for a lot of our listeners. You know, earlier this week I was reading an article that I found in the business section of our local newspaper called Breakfast Cereal Back in Vogue. I love that title. It's funny.

CAROLYN: It is funny, but it's scary.

BRITNI: It is scary. Well, people are getting tired of cooking for the past several months, you know, being stuck at home. And so they're turning back to cereal even for dinner meals. And, you know, we hear this from our clients, so it's not a big surprise, but now consumers are eating cereal rather than cooking; and just processed food in general. And until recently the sales of cereal had really dramatically declined and more and more people were cooking real food for breakfast. However, between March and May of this year, there was a 26% surge in cereal sales. It's a huge increase.

CAROLYN: It is.

BRITNI: You know, the cooking fatigue, but also people are stress eating.

CAROLYN: Oh, I'm hearing that a lot from my clients, Britni.

BRITNI: When you're stressed, you're feeling emotional. We turn to carbs and sugar. And you know, as I mentioned for years, sales of that ready-to-eat cereals were on the steady decline and people were eating breakfast with protein-rich foods, and also for lunch and dinner. In fact, the retail sales of fresh eggs were up more than 13%.

CAROLYN: Yeah. And now I'd like to see what it is.

BRITNI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: I know I've been stocking up, especially lately with this, you know, new crackdown again.

BRITNI: Yup.

CAROLYN: And, you know, I went to the store the other day and, you know, stocked up on eggs and a few good pot roasts.

BRITNI: Smart.

CAROLYN: And yeah, exactly.

BRITNI: And I think that's the tricky part now too is people are stocking up and of course you can only stock up with so many of those real foods.

CAROLYN: True. True. True.

BRITNI: So, you know, people are grabbing more of those shelf-stable, less healthy foods. And you know, sadly, eating those more nutritious foods: eggs, bacon spinach, which are low in sugar, it's just become less of a priority for people. And this article said, “Nutrition is taking a bit of a pause right now.”

CAROLYN: Wow. Yeah, it should be, you know, high priority.

BRITNI: It should be. It should be. And as we've heard from our clients, people’s pants are getting tighter and tighter, and many people are experiencing more pain and fatigue as a result.

CAROLYN: Well, you mentioned about the cereal. I have to tell you, you know, one of my friends was in the hospital. She had to have emergency surgery and she sent an email. And she said, “Guess what they brought me to eat?” Breakfast was Chex cereal, sweetened almond milk, and a can of apple juice. And one egg.

BRITNI: Oh gosh.

CAROLYN: So, okay. The cereal’s got about 51 grams of carbs. The almond milk is about 14 grams. And the can of apple juice: another 14 grams. That totals 79 grams of carbohydrates. So that's equivalent to like 20, almost 20 teaspoons of sugar.

BRITNI: That's a lot. And this is in the hospital when people should be healing. Those are not healing foods.

CAROLYN: No. So the American Heart Association: what do they recommend?

BRITNI: Six teaspoons.

CAROLYN: Six teaspoons for women and nine for men. That's it. And this was 20. That's crazy.

BRITNI: That's unfortunate.

CAROLYN: Yeah, it really is. So just at a time in our lives when we all need to be focusing on nutrition, large numbers of people are grabbing those high-sugar processed foods like cereal. So the cereal is considered to be like one of those ultra-processed foods by the National Institute of Health. And some of our listeners may remember when people eat ultra-processed foods, what did they do? They gain weight, right? So currently about two-thirds of adults in the U.S. are either overweight or obese. And you know, we've been talking about this for how long? And those numbers keep going up. They're not going down. So as dietitians and nutritionists, we know there is more to the connection of high-sugar processed foods, such as cereal to health conditions.

So back in the early 1960s, we started reading research about insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome. So one of the first signs of metabolic syndrome is that expanding waistline, right? And generally, overall weight gain. And of course there are other symptoms, like hypertension, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low HDL, heart disease, diabetes, and this overall inflammation, right? So in 1963, that's nearly 60 years ago, scientists said that it was sugar consumption…

BRITNI: Interesting.

CAROLYN: …was the cause of heart disease. But what happened? Many people just continued to believe that heart disease was from eating fat and too much fat. So, and I still have my clients coming to me telling me they can't eat fat because they've been diagnosed with cardiovascular disease. So now I believe more people are realizing that heart disease is actually connected to the consumption of sugar.

BRITNI: We're going to talk more about that research when we get back, but it's time for our first break. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition brought to you by Nutritional Weight and Wellness. For the month of November, we are offering all 15 of our individual online classes for only $10 per class. That's a steal.

CAROLYN: It is a real steal.

BRITNI: So, if you're struggling with joint pain, leg cramps, back pain, the class Eating to Reduce Pain and Inflammation will help you to understand the foods that cause aches and pains, and also the foods that will help you to reduce inflammation. So go to weightandwellness.com to sign up or call us at (651) 699-3438. And we will help you through this process to get you signed up. We'll be right back.

BREAK

CAROLYN: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. I have two of these $10 individual online classes that I encourage all of my clients to take. Because of COVID-19, it's really important to keep your immune system strong. So the $10 online classes, which again are a huge steal if you ask me. Immune-Building Foods and Nutrients: this one gives you an overview of the key habits to embrace for a stronger immune system. The other $10 online class that I recommend to minimize the toll on your health during this pandemic is Stress, Food and You. So you're going to learn how good nutrition can protect you from these stress-related health conditions. All you have to do is sign up at weightandwellness.com or call our office at (651) 699-3438.

BRITNI: I think anybody could benefit from those classes nowadays.

CAROLYN: You know what? I think I said our phone number wrong. It’s-699, right?

BRITNI: Yes, you’re right.

CAROLYN: 651-699-3438.

BRITNI: Good catch! Who knows where that would have sent people.

CAROLYN: Sorry about that.

BRITNI: So, before the break, Carolyn, you were talking about, you know, research even from the sixties was connecting sugar to…

CAROLYN: Heart disease.

BRITNI: …heart disease and, and in 2016, the New York Times had an article and it, the article is entitled How Sugar Industry Shifted Blame to Fat. And basically researchers had uncovered that in the sixties, there was a connection between sugar and heart disease, but the sugar industry found out about that. And they actually paid the researchers to change the outcome of the study to say that fat is what contributes to heart disease.

CAROLYN: Yeah. That's amazing. You know, I read, I read that article as well, and I was like, “Oh my goodness.” I'm glad that that doesn't happen as much now. I mean, we do have peer-reviewed things. They're not supposed to be doing that anymore. But back in the sixties, those norms and guidelines weren't there for the scientific community. So think about how many millions of people have been misled and really the worst misled people are in my opinion, the doctors, cause they're still telling their patients, “Cut back your fat.”

BRITNI: Yep.

CAROLYN: You know.

BRITNI: We hear it all the time.

CAROLYN: We hear it all the time!

BRITNI: And people get really confused. They just, they don't…

CAROLYN: So now we have confusion about heart disease and of course, I mean, we're seeing kind of the same thing with COVID-19, aren’t we? There's a lot of misinformation out there.

BRITNI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: And so who are you going to believe?

BRITNI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: You know, hopefully it is the scientists at this time, you know?

BRITNI: Well, and I just think that is one example of that happening. How frequently did that happen? You know how, like you said, Carolyn, we've been misled. How frequently have we been misled over the years? Yeah. So, you know, we know that and apparently they knew this years ago, that when people eat too much sugar and processed foods, your triglycerides, your blood pressure goes up, your HDL or your good or protective cholesterol goes down. More and more researchers have found that heart disease is connected to high blood pressure. And pre-diabetes, type-two diabetes, which are all related to the amount of carbs you eat in your diet. We know that the carbs turn to sugar in your body. We have started to connect how those high-carb processed refined foods: they lead to all types of health problems; not just heart disease, but including an increased level of inflammation. And a lot of times that increased level of inflammation manifests as pain; aches and pains, which we're talking about today.

CAROLYN: Well, you know what I tell my clients, Britni, is what is the baseline of all disease states? Maybe that's not the right term, but what, what, what, how does it start?

BRITNI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: It always starts with inflammation.

BRITNI: It does. It does.

CAROLYN: So if we can control inflammation, think about all of the things that we can control. Right? So like think about having a heart attack. That started with inflammation of the blood vessels. So we need to stop this inflammation. So like, you know, those heart attacks: they're very painful events. Another painful event would be gout.

BRITNI: I’ve heard it’s terrible.

CAROLYN: So, so, how is cereal or other high processed carb foods connected to gout? First, I just want to say, you know, gout is really a type of inflammation.

BRITNI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: It's arthritis and it causes pain and swelling of the joints. So again, gout, the baseline is that inflammation.

BRITNI: And it usually happens in your big toe.

CAROLYN: Big toe. But it can happen in any other joint. But yeah, that's the most common one. So sugar, especially this high-fructose corn syrup, that's going to raise your uric acid levels and increase the risk of getting gout. So recently, one of my clients who took the Nutrition for Weight Loss series had very painful gout in his big toe, right? When he actually, when he started the 12-week Nutrition for Weight Loss series, and then he cut out things like cereal and pasta and bread from his diet. And within three weeks, “poof”, the gout was gone and he lost eight pounds.

BRITNI: Wow.

CAROLYN: He was no longer in pain. And of course he was feeling so much better. You know, a study actually that was done in 2016 and published in the British Medical Journal found that people who consumed the most fructose had a 62% increase of gout.

BRITNI: Oh!

CAROLYN: 62!

BRITNI: That's a lot.

CAROLYN: That is a lot. So you see, sugar and refined foods can really throw off your biochemistry and then inflammation, aches, and pains: they all just show up.

BRTINI: Yeah. I have a similar story of a client with gout and he was drinking a large glass of juice every day; got rid of the juice. Wow! The gout went away.

CAROLYN: Yeah.

BRITNI: Pretty amazing.

CAROLYN: So it's not just alcoholic causes gout, right?

BRITNI: Yeah. Now I want to talk about the link between sugar or high processed carbs and, and cancer. And we're going to do that after we return from break. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. If leg cramps are waking you up at night... Oh, I used to have them terribly. I suggest taking 400 to 600 milligrams of Magnesium Glycinate at bedtime. And that for me, completely got rid of those, those terrible cramps. It was amazing. But not all magnesium supplements are created equal because some just do not offer you the relief you need.

CAROLYN: We'll be right back.

BREAK

CAROLYN: Welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. Quite often, the very first supplement that I recommend to reduce inflammation is our Nutrikey Omega-3 fatty acid. Actually, when I lived in the Canadian provinces… and I kind of moved all over Canada: New Brunswick or on the Atlantic or in Vancouver, British Columbia on the Pacific and practice nutrition. My clients usually got most of their Omega-3 fatty acids from wild-caught salmon. And I also worked a bit in Newfoundland.

BRITNI: Oh, cool.

CAROLYN: Yeah, it was a really, lots of good salmon and good, healthy, cold water fish there. Cod was very, very popular as well. But by contrast, most people today really need to add this inflammation and pain-reducing fish oil in a softgel or liquid form. I know that's part of my daily routine to take omega-3s.

BRITNI: Me too.

CAROLYN: I, you know, I, I try to eat salmon at least once a week, but sometimes I miss.

BRITNI: I unfortunately do not like it. So I really have to rely on those omega-3’s.

CAROLYN: Yeah, you're not you're, you're not alone there. I have a lot of clients that just don't like salmon. So, the Nutrikey omega-3 fish oil is a pharmaceutical grade supplement and is manufactured in a good GMP. That means good manufacturing processes: certified facility. So I would like to share a comment from Anna who said, “This product is great with controlling the inflammation I normally had with my arthritis in my joints.” So that's straight from one of our clients.

BRITNI: Yup. Yeah. That is one of the basic supplements I recommend to all my clients, because it does really help with any inflammation.

CAROLYN: Yeah.

BRITNI: So before break I started talking about the connection with cancer because of course, cancer is a very painful condition. And to understand that connection between sugar and cancer, we have to look a little deeper into the biochemistry. So as dietitians, you know, Carolyn and I know that when we eat sugar, our pancreas secretes insulin. And researchers have found that malignant breast tumors have receptors to insulin.

CAROLYN: Very interesting, isn't it?

BRITNI: It is; whereas a healthy breast tissue does not have insulin receptors. There's also another connection that was discovered in the 1950s called insulin-like growth factors, which look a lot like insulin and they're secreted in response to insulin. So tumor cells appear to have two or three times the amount of insulin-like growth factors than normal cells. So simplified…

CAROLYN: Yes.

BRITNI: The more sugar or processed carbs you eat, the more insulin you have, which will then feed the insulin-like growth factors. And then in turn feed cancer cells. So much of the research actually indicates that cancer is a metabolic disease with insulin and insulin-like growth factors, promoting that cancer growth.

CAROLYN: Yeah. And I, you know, I have a number of clients that are fighting cancer at this time and really we, I just say, “Oh please, this is the one thing you need to do, if you won't do anything else.” I have one client that prior to her diagnosis, she was drinking, I think it was like eight pops a day. And, and she was having terrible, terrible migraines. She stopped drinking the pop: migraines went away. And so, and think about now, you know, she's fighting breast cancer. So hopefully that will really improve her chances of beating this.

BRITNI: Oh, I’m sure.

CAROLYN: So it is necessary to explain some of the biochemistry between sugar and aches and pains. About three years ago, Dar actually wrote a very popular article called Sugar Aches and Inflammation. And she made the connection between what we eat and our achy bodies. So one question we always ask our clients (our new clients) is, “Do you have any achy muscles? Stiff joints? Do you get migraines? As, you know, an increase in, or “Do you have an increase in some of your asthma symptoms?” Or something like that; or more painful PMS after you eat sugar? She actually went on in the article to help educate all of us on label reading and stating that there's a really simple equation to see how much sugar you are actually consuming. All you have to do is look at those nutrition facts, right, Britni?

BRITNI: Yup.

CAROLYN: So you look at the total carbs and then you do this math: every four grams of carbs equals one teaspoon of sugar. For example, she went on to give the potato chip example, which is kind of shocking.

BRITNI: It is.

CAROLYN: You know, a nine-ounce bag of chips is going to turn, it has 127 grams of carbs.

BRITNI: Wow.

CAROLYN: That is almost 32 teaspoons of sugar. Again, six for women and 9 for men.

BRITNI: And I mean, potato chips for some people: you can't stop.

CAROLYN: No.

BRITNI: Yeah. Once you open that bag, it's going to be gone.

CAROLYN: Exactly.

BRITNI: Yeah. And a lot of, if they're new clients coming to us, a lot of people have not made that connection of what food might actually be making all of this worse for them.

CAROLYN: Yeah.

BRITNI: And the cramps. So I think it's, menstrual cramps. It's really interesting. I'm sure you've found this too, Carolyn, that after a month or two of eating more real food, all of the sudden those start to improve and go away. And I think that that too, that's not a connection that people ever make is what you're eating is potentially causing more menstrual cramps.

CAROLYN: Well, and then usually what I hear from my clients is it's around that menstruating time that they start having these cravings for chocolate and sugar and yeah, they don't make the connection that it's going to make it worse.

BRITNI: And I too, you know, a lot of people just don't realize the amount of sugar that you're, that you're consuming cause sugar’s hiding all over in our food. So I want to talk about the two most popular, dry cereals on the market. According to General Mills’ website, one cup of Honey Nut Cheerios, which I should say is advertised as being healthy and heart-healthy, right?

CAROLYN: Yes.

BRITNI: So a cup of Honey Nut Cheerios contains 30 grams of carbs, which converts to seven and a half teaspoons of sugar in your body. When you pour a cup of that Honey Nut Cheerios in the bowl, it really doesn't look like much at all, so most people add another cup. I know for me, when I used to eat cereal, absolutely I was having at least two cups. You want to be full, right?

CAROLYN: Right.

BRITNI: So then all of a sudden it's 60 grams of carbs or 15 teaspoons of sugar. And in reality, two cups of cereal might not be enough for some of you, especially those growing teens. So there goes another cup. We’re up to three cups, which is 90 grams of carbs or 22 and a half teaspoons of sugar.

CAROLYN: So Britni, what about this? Then we put something else on it.

BRTINI: Yeah.

CAROLYN: Like my friend in the hospital: she got that sweetened almond milk. Or even if it's regular milk, that's going to add more carbs, probably close to like 14 grams, so another three and a half teaspoons.

BRITNI: That's such a good point. And I think that that's a really great example that on a nutrition label, the serving size is often not what people are actually eating. So you really, really want to look at that. So let's compare it to a real food breakfast: two eggs, three strips of bacon, a cup of spinach, half a cup of sweet potato. In this real food meal, there's less than 18 grams of carbs or four and a half teaspoons of sugar or glucose into your bloodstream.

CAROLYN: So another very popular cereal is that Cinnamon Toast Crunch. So one cup of that Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal contains 33 grams of carb. So two cups would be 66 grams of carbs or 16 and a half teaspoons of sugar or glucose in your bloodstream. Again, not a, not a pretty picture for inflammation, right? So if you want to burn off all of those calories, you're going to have to walk for almost two hours.

BRITNI: I, we don't hear that quite as much anymore, but we used to hear that a lot is, “Well, I'm going to eat that, but then I'm just going to exercise it off.”

CAROLYN: Right; right.

BRITNI: If that were the case, you'd be exercising all day long if you're eating all these processed carbs. But so what are some of the other negative side effects of consuming sugar? If you're a person who has achy, painful joints, sugar, without a doubt is going to increase inflammation and cause pain. And if you are a person that has these aches and pains, I challenge you even just for a week, track your pain and track your food. At the end of that week, analyze it and see if you notice a difference.

CAROLYN: Well, Britni, I have to give my little hip pain story.

BRITNI: Yes.

CAROLYN: So, I think our listeners know I had a hip replacement in January of this year. Before that I was suffering obviously with a lot of pain, and I controlled that pain for the most part by eating real food, keeping all my carbs down, but I'm human. My family get-togethers love pizza. And oh my gosh: two pieces of pizza, and the next day I was in so much pain. You know, I finally said, “Okay, Carolyn, don't do that. Bring your own food to the family gathering until you get your hip replacement, because it was not worth it. So another really negative side effect of sugar is it decreases your immune function.

BRITNI: It is time for our third break. You are listening to Dishing Up Nutrition. To reduce this pain and inflammation, the first step is to remove sugar. We've been talking a lot about that this morning, but also alcohol and gluten from your diet. And to support joint health, I also recommend adding two capsules of Joint Revive daily. This supplement contains three key ingredients. The first ingredient: magnesium glycinate, one of our favorites, which relaxes your muscles. The second ingredient is hops extract. And this has been found to reduce pain and inflammation. It also contains undenatured collagen to actually repair your collagen. So I typically recommend two capsules of Joint Revive daily. But if you have more intense discomfort, try starting with 4 per day. It’s easy to take, and really we’ve found it so effective. We'll be right back.

BREAK

CAROLYN: Well, welcome back to Dishing Up Nutrition. To have less pain and inflammation, most of our clients find it is necessary for them to sleep eight to nine hours most nights. So if you're struggling with sleep problems, I suggest that you take the Getting a Good Night's Sleep class online. It's only $10. That's a real steal. And that's going to go on for the rest of this month of November. And this class will really help you understand why you need magnesium to relax your muscles and why melatonin helps people fall asleep, and how maybe 5-HTP can help support serotonin production. That's that calming neurotransmitter so you can go to sleep through the night. So all you have to do is go to our website, weightandwellness.com (all spelled out) to sign up for this class or many more things. If you have any questions, please call us at (651) 699-3438. And Britni, this morning I had NPR on and they were interviewing Matthew Walker, who wrote the book, Why We Sleep. I didn't hear it all. But, yeah, it was really good. We, we, we all read that book.

BRITNI: Yes.

CAROLYN: And we actually had a show on that book, and I believe we were interviewing Dr. Walker.

BRITNI: Yeah, I think so too.

CAROLYN: That was a while ago. But anyway, sleep's really important.

BRITNI: It is so important. So before the break, we were talking about everything that sugar does to our body. So sugar also accelerates aging. Yeah, nobody wants that.

CAROLYN: Nobody wants that.

BRITNI: Sugar slowly deteriorates the elasticity found in your body tissue, which can not only age your skin, but also can age your arteries and even your heart.

CAROLYN: So sugar can cause tooth decay and gum disease. So I have to have another story.

BRITNI: I love stories.

CAROLYN: One of the communities I worked in: this one was in Northern Manitoba, and it was a hydroelectric dam site. And the native community there was totally displaced by the flooding of the land. And, you know, cause they, they were building these dams. And this was totally devastating to their way of life. They were no longer foraging and hunting. They were able to still fish, but that wasn't enough. So, you know, the, the hydroelectric dam company: they created a store, a grocery store. There were no roads in or roads out to this community. So everything was brought in by train. It was a five day train trip from Winnipeg. So you can imagine the quality of the food wasn't, it wasn't fresh.  You know, it was very difficult to get a lot of things. And what happened to that native community was so devastating: the gum disease, the tooth decay, the rampant diabetes was horrible.

BRITNI: That’s so sad.

CAROLYN: So yeah, it was very, very sad. So anyway, I just had to give that little story.

BRITNI: Yeah. It is such a good example of what happens when we start eating processed foods in our diet.

CAROLYN: Yeah, and what these, these native, this native community became addicted to sugar basically cause they didn't have a lot of it before that.

BRITNI: Yeah. You know, and the food, the sugar in our food, but also the beverages. I think that a lot of people are less aware of the sugar they're getting from beverages because you're just drinking it. It's not necessarily always filling you up. So high sugar coffee drinks, of course pop: those have been found to be one of the top causes of weight gain.

CAROLYN: Yeah. You know, brain health, too. Good mood, no depression, no anxiety; better able to handle this stress of all of this going on in our world today. So there are many reasons that, you know, we could have depression or anxiety and stress, but possibly the simplest way to think about our brain health is how it relates to sugar. So when people, whether they are adolescents or adults eat a lot of sugar and processed carbs, one biochemical response occurs. That, and I’ll try to explain it the best I can. So sugar actually blocks the uptake of serotonin into the brain cells. So when there is a deficiency of serotonin or when it's blocked… (That’s that happy, calm, neurotransmitter). Serotonin really cannot get into the receiving cell, and then we're going to have bad moods, depression, and anxiety. We're not going to be able to handle stress very well. So whether it's table sugar from cookies or high fructose corn syrup from your favorite pop or soda or sugar from cereal or potato chips or pizza, the natural process of sending and receiving those neurotransmitters is decreased. And that's when we're going to have that anxiety and depression. We're not going to be able to handle stress. So we don't want to block those serotonin receptors.

BRITNI: No, we don't. And then, you know, when you eat the carbs and sugar, you get a very, very short burst of serotonin. So your brain gets addicted to that as well because you continually want that little short feel-good serotonin to be produced. But of course that doesn't last long at all.

CAROLYN: No, not at all.

BRITNI: You know, another, another area that I think is important to talk about in regards to aches and pains are, is gluten. So I have several clients that have discovered they have a gluten sensitivity, and when they eliminate gluten from their diets, all of a sudden, their pain goes away. And then they eat it. They have pain the same day, the next day. So gluten is found in, it's the protein in wheat, barley rye, spelt and kamut. And you know, we've had past shows on gluten. We have lots of information on our website about gluten, but I encourage you to look into that if you are suffering from a lot of chronic pain. And no matter what inflammation is affecting you, if you want less inflammation and less pain, I suggest reducing the processed carbs and sugar, eating real food four to five times a day. At every meal and snack getting protein, animal sources of protein (two to six ounces), two to three cups of vegetables, a tablespoon of natural fat like butter, olive oil, peanut butter, coconut oil, just to name a few. You're going to have better body function, better brain function. And it's going to ease that chronic pain. So what, what might that look like?

CAROLYN: Oh well, my goodness. One of my favorite meals is like a chicken sausage, like a fully-cooked chicken sausage, or I love the turkey cranberry sticks.

BRITNI: Oh, yeah.

CAROLYN: Those are so yummy. A half of an avocado: that would be my healthy fat, right? The sausage or cranberry sticks of course my protein, and then salad greens with some tomato and an olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing; so all good healthy fats. The protein… my carb is my salad greens. Sometimes I might, you know, even do, you know, the summer sausage, hummus, vegetables, some olives and…

BRITNI: Great ideas. Our goal at Nutritional Weight and Wellness is to help each and every person experience better health through eating real food. Thank you for listening and have a safe and healthy day.

 

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