Diet Influences So Many Aspects of Health

Tired of arthritis pain? Looking for an alternative to pricey medications? Well, grab a box of raisins, and a bottle of gin. I’m not kidding! Apparently white raisins soaked in gin are a popular home remedy for arthritis. Anahad O’Connor of The New York Times explains:
“You get some gin and get some white raisins — and only white raisins — and soak them in the gin for two weeks,” she said Teresa Heinz Kerry. “Then eat nine of the raisins a day.”
O’Connor points out that no rigorous studies have been conducted to prove the validity of the claim. However grapes do contain compounds that reduce inflammation, but most are lost during the drying process.

I don’t think you’ll see a recipe for gin soaked raisins popping up in one of Dr. Fuhrman’s book anytime soon. According to him alcohol isn’t exactly the health promoting substance it is sometimes reported to be. Here’s a quote from a previous post:
A few years ago the University of California’s Berkeley Wellness Letter reported on new research about the so-called heart-healthy “benefits” of alcohol consumption. Previous studies had led to a recommendation that moderate consumption of red wine—but not other alcoholic beverages—helped reduce the risk of heart attack. What did the new research reveal?

If we were to rely on the Berkeley Wellness Letter for this information, the latest news would be that moderate consumption of any alcoholic beverage—red or white wine, even beer and spirits—can be heart-healthy. Unfortunately, their latest news is still woefully out-of-date. More recent studies show that even moderate alcohol consumption is linked to significantly increased incidence of atrial fibrillation,1 a condition that can lead to stroke, and to higher rates of breast cancer.2,3

Moderate drinking is defined as a maximum of two drinks for men. Consuming more than this is associated with increased fat around the waist4 and other potential problems. For example, alcohol consumption leads to mild withdrawal sensations the next day that are commonly mistaken for hunger, which leads people to eat more than is genuinely necessary, resulting in weight gain.
In Eat to Live, Dr. Fuhrman explains arthritis is one of many diet-sensitive conditions:
Patients are told that food has nothing to do with the disease they develop. Dermatologists insist that food has nothing to do with acne, rheumatologists insist that food has nothing to do with rheumatoid arthritis, and gastroenterologists insist that food has nothing to do with irritable and inflammatory bowel disease. Even cardiologists have been resistant to accept the accumulating evidence that atherosclerosis is entirely avoidable. Most of them still believe that coronary artery disease and angina require the invasive treatment of surgery and are not reversible with nutritional intervention. Most physicians have no experience in treating disease naturally with nutritional excellence, and some physicians who don’t know about it are convinced it is not possible.

Not only are common disorders such as asthma associated with increased body weight and our disease-causing diet, but in my experience these diseases are also curable with superior nutrition in the majority of cases.5 Asthma is an example of a disease considered irreversible that I watch resolve regularly.

My patients routinely make complete and predictable recovery from these illnesses, predominantly through aggressive dietary changes. I am always delighted to meet new patients who are ready to take responsibility for their own health and well-being.
Dietary-Caused Illnesses with High Prevalence
acne allergies angina
appendicitis asthma arthritis
atherosclerosis constipation colonic polyps
diabetes(adult) diverticulosis esophagitis
fibromyalgia gallstones gastritis
gout headaches hemorrhoids
high blood pressure hypoglycemic symptoms indigestion
irritable bowel syndrome kidney stones lumbar spine syndromes
macular degeneration musculoskeletal pain osteoperosis
sexual dysfunction stroke uterine fibroids

1. Jancin B. Just a few drinks raise risk of atrial fibrillation. Family Phsyician News. January 11, 2002;4.

2. Wright RM, McManaman JL, Rapine JE. Alcohol-induced breast cancer: a proposed mechanism. Free Radic Biol Med 1999; 26(3-4): 348-354.

3. Dorgan JF, Baer DJ, Albert PS, et al. Serum hormones and the alcohol-breast cancer association in postmenopausal women. J Natl Cancer Inst 2001; 93(9): 710-716.

4. Dallongeville J, Marecaux N, Ducmetiere P, et al. Influence of alcohol consumption and various beverages on waist girth and waist-to-hip ratio in a sample of French men and women. In J Obes Metab Disord 1998; 22 (12): 1178-1183.

5. Carnargro, C.A., S.T. Weiss, S. Zhang, W.C. Willett, and F.E. Speizer. 1999. Prospective study of body mass index, weigh change, and risk of adult-onset asthma in women. Arch. Intern. Med. 159: 2582-88.
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