Your Primal Body: A User Manual for a Healthier Life

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It’s no secret to my readers that I wrote Don’t Die Early to help others streamline their journey from ill health to better health. What started as a personal mission became a desire to spare others the frustration and effort of wading through a seemingly endless parade of myths, misconceptions, and half-truths.

In a similar vein, Your Primal Body, written by certified fitness trainer and former competitive body builder Mikki Reilly, aims to be a handbook for replacing an unhealthy lifestyle with a healthier one. But unlike some “get fit” books that focus solely on fitness or diet, Your Primal Body effectively captures the essence of both. Better still, it does so without being heavy handed or unrealistic.

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Grain Brain: Another Nail in Grain’s Coffin

Neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter deals another blow to the "grains are good" lie

Neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter deals another blow to the “grains are good” lie.

First there was Wheat Belly, a scathing indictment by cardiologist Dr. William Davis on the harm caused by today’s modern wheat, even exulted whole grains. In Wheat Belly, Dr. Davis warned of us heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and neurological problems, all caused by wheat. Dr. Davis cites NIH studies showing wheat proteins binding to the brain’s opioid receptors, altering behavior and increasing appetite.

Now, acclaimed neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter continues the highly justified grain bashing with Grain Brain, a book that promises to reveal the truth about “wheat, carbs, and sugar—your brain’s silent killers.”

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The Return of Bread?!?!?

After giving up wheat more than three years ago, I had pretty much decided that bread was a bygone food in this household. Flaxseed crackers took the place of wheat-based crackers and cinnamon pancakes made from almond meal took the place of “real” pancakes. The pancakes even served as a bread substitute for the occasional sandwich.

The loss of “real” bread wasn’t a great loss, though. After three years, my bread cravings have subsided to nearly zero. I’ve so thoroughly reduced the role of bread in my diet that when a friend sent me a link to a recipe for “great wheat-free bread,” I left the link in my ToDo list for over a year before trying it.

And boy am I sorry I waited so long!

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Summer Camp: Eating for Dementia

By now, the entire blogosphere has picked up on the NEJM study showing that increased levels of blood glucose are linked to an increased risk for dementia.

This study isn’t surprising to those who know how damaging glucose can be to virtually every system in the body. Reading this study, I think back to my post on the absurdity of hosting pancake breakfasts to combat Alzheimer’s disease.

With our nation’s elevated glucose levels in mind, I asked my eight year old daughter to randomly pick one of her peers from summer camp last week and mentally note what this friend ate during the day.

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Promoting Alzheimer’s Awareness by Promoting Alzhemer’s

I recently noticed a flyer posted at a local restaurant:

“Pancake Breakfast to Aid Alzheimer’s Association”

A quick search online reveals that this is not an isolated event.

Carpentersville Local Firefighters Local 4790 “Eat for Alzheimer’s Pancake Breakfast”

Raleigh County Commission on Aging “Pancake Breakfast to Aid Alzheimer’s”

Pancake breakfasts, it seems, have become de rigueur for benefitting Alzheimer’s. Whether to increase awareness or to fund research, pancake breakfasts are suddenly being promoted by a slew of well-meaning people, from local firefighters to community organizations to Alzheimer’s associations.

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Don’t Die Early Now Available for the iPad

Attention iPad fans! Don’t Die Early is now available in the iBookstore!

Creating a version of Don’t Die Early for the iPad enabled me to include many features that just aren’t possible in a printed book or a traditional ebook: more interesting typography, color graphics, hyperlinks, and quizzes, just to name a few things.

While reading Don’t Die Early on the iPad, not only will you enjoy a more visually pleasing experience thanks to the color divider pages and more attractive typography, but you’ll also be able to quickly access cited journal articles and other references with a single touch. You can quickly jump from one place to another using hyperlinks and test yourself on the book’s content using the quizzes featured in many chapters.

If you or someone you know enjoys reading on their iPad, grab a copy of Don’t Die Early! At $9.99, it’s priced the same as the Kindle and Nook versions.

This attractive button will launch iTunes on your computer or iDevice and take you to the iBookstore listing for Don’t Die Early where you can buy the book or download a free sample of its content.
Don't Die Early - Rocky Angelucci


Hats Off to Sedgwick, Maine’s “Food Sovereignty” Law

Unnoticed by many, the tiny town of Sedgwick, Maine in 2011 passed a “Food Sovereignty Law” that is simultaneously cause for sadness and celebration.

First, the celebration: This law, passed unanimously, states “Sedgwick citizens possess the right to produce, process, sell, purchase, and consume local foods of their choosing.

Furthermore, the ordinance states “It shall be unlawful for any law or regulation adopted by the state or federal government to interfere with the rights recognized by this Ordinance.

In other words, consenting adults may purchase whatever food items they want from any local provider, free from government restriction or bureaucracy.

What a concept. Grownups buying food from other grownups without government control. That’s heresy!

But what about risk? After all, only the government can ensure that the foods we eat are perfectly safe, right? (Like they’ve done such a good job so far, after all, with stories of food contamination from major producers making headlines on a near daily basis.)

Here’s what the Sedgwick, Maine ordinance says about risk:

Patrons purchasing food for home consumption may enter into private agreements with those producers or processors of local foods to waive any liability for the consumption of that food. Producers or processors of local foods shall be exempt from licensure and inspection requirements for that food as long as those agreements are in effect.

In a country where armed SWAT teams routinely descend upon independent farms and private buying clubs, it’s joyous to see to see the citizens of Sedgwick formally recognize that consenting adults have the right to consume whatever foods they want to consume, freely accepting the risk and consequences of doing so.

Oh, and the sadness part? What could possibly make me sad about such an ordinance?

Simple: It truly saddens me that in the “land of the free,” it takes an ordinance like Sedgwick’s to remind us that the citizens of this country have the right to consume the foods of our choosing.

Promoting Honesty Through Subterfuge

If the dairy industry has its way, we’re about to see even more options for feeding our children ultra-sweet tasting, low-fat dairy products, under the guise of providing “more healthful eating practices” so we can “reduce childhood obesity by providing for lower-calorie flavored milk products.”

According to an announcement in the Federal Register, the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) and the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) have filed a petition requesting that the FDA amend the standard of identity for milk (and 17 other dairy products) to provide for the “use of any safe and suitable sweetener as an optional ingredient.”

“Safe and suitable” according to the petition, includes “non-nutritive sweeteners such as aspartame.”

Aspartame? Ick.

And the best part is, this petition would allow the dairy industry to add such non-nutritive sweeteners to milk without indicating this in any way on the label, arguing that “…the proposed amendments to the milk standard of identity would promote honesty and fair dealing in the marketplace…”

Only in today’s insane world of food politics does hiding food ingredients promote honesty.

If you’re confused about how secretly adding artificial sweeteners to our milk could possibly promote “honesty and fair dealing,” the petitioners kindly explain:

“…IDFA and NMPF argue that nutrient content claims such as “reduced calorie” are not attractive to children, and maintain that consumers can more easily identify the overall nutritional value of milk products that are flavored with non-nutritive sweeteners if the labels do not include such claims.”

 Currently, you see, non-nutritive sweeteners may only be included in an unlabeled product if a the product packaging bears a nutrient content claim (e.g., “low-calorie). So, by removing the “low-calorie” label that drive the kids away, we can ensure that they drink more aspartame-enriched, low-fat milk.

And remember, it’s all about the consumer.

As the dairy industry states:

“Accordingly, the petitioners state that milk flavored with non-nutritive sweeteners should be labeled as milk without further claims so that consumers can more easily identify its overall nutritional value.”

 I don’t know about you, but I can more easily identify a food’s nutritional value when the &*#$@*! label reveals everything that’s in the product!

Thanks to the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF), and the FDA (who will undoubtedly bend over for the milk industry), our kids will suffer even further damage from a lack of healthy fat and will be further bombarded with aspartame (a substance the neurologist Russel Blaylock refers to as an “excitotoxin”), all while cultivating a further desire for heavily sweetened foods.