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Healthy Food Lover's Newsletter, Issue #10 -- Cooking - What is it Good for?
December 15, 2012
Hello Healthy Food Lovers,

Cooking - What is it Good for?

As far as the prevention of aging goes, absolutely nothing!

Cooking does make food taste great and even makes some foods edible or more digestible, but it also creates toxins that will age you.

This newsletter is not about getting you to stop all of your cooking, but to educate you on consuming much less of these toxins.

I will be covering two of the "Big" toxins that are formed from cooking - Acrylamides and AGEs. I will also be giving you tips on how to lower the amounts of these toxins.

You will also learn about the most important antioxidant or the "Master" of all antioxidants.

The importance of consuming enough of this powerful nutrient and lowering the amount of toxins you consume everyday is essential to staying young.

What are Acrylamides?

These toxins are more likely to be found in foods that have been baked, fried, grilled or roasted - the longer the cooking time and temperature - the more acrylamides.

Acrylamides are mainly found in starchy plant based types of food that have been cooked at temperatures higher than 248 degrees F. However, acrylamides have also been found in dried fruits which are subjected to much less heat.

When sugars like glucose or fructose and free asparagine (an amino acid) are present in foods and then subjected to high temperatures a "browning reaction" is created and so are these toxins.

Some researchers are now pointing to the oxidization of fat as yet another way acrylamides are being formed.

Therefore, potatoes that have been deep fried probably contain the highest amount of acrylamides as potatoes have a good amount of the amino acid asparagine and starch.

These Contain High Levels of Acrylamides:

  • French Fries
  • Potato Chips or Crisps
  • Burnt Toast
  • Tobacco Smoke
  • Roasted Coffee
  • Dehydrated Onion Soup
  • Grain Based Coffee Alternatives
  • Breakfast Cereals
  • Taco Shells
  • Dried Plums or Prunes
  • Dried Pears
  • Crackers
  • Pretzels
  • Baked Desserts
  • Cooked Chocolate
  • Grilled Vegetables
  • Grilled Meats
  • Fried Foods
  • Barbeque
  • Roasted Nuts
Acrylamides increases your risk of:
  • Cancer
  • Heart Disease
  • Nerve Damage
  • DNA Mutation
  • Damage to Male Reproductive Glands
  • Depletion of Cellular Glutathione Levels
These toxins are also a potent Neurotoxin and increase your risk of getting Alzheimer's Disease. And by the way, you'll be less able to detoxify your body with lower levels of Glutathione.

How to Lower Your Levels of Acrylamides

Lower your consumption of cooked starchy or sugary foods

Boiling, steaming, or poaching your food produces very little amounts of acrylamides

Buy light roasted coffee instead of dark roasted

Frequently turn your food during grilling in order to avoid charring your food - adding antioxidants such as lemon juice to foods or drinking tea have proven to reduce levels

Cook food to a golden brown color instead of dark brown

Cooking with honey and similar syrups will probably produce higher levels than using brown or white sugar, so don't cook with honey

Baking breads with prolonged yeast fermentation reduces the formation of these toxins - also remove the crust from your breads to reduce acrylamides

Toast bread to a light brown color rather than dark brown

Eat more raw foods, there really are no detectable levels found in raw foods

What are AGEs?

Foods high in protein and fat (like animal foods) and foods high in sugar (like fructose) that are cooked, heated, or processed at high temperatures will be high in AGEs.

These are Loaded with AGEs:

  • Highly Processed Foods
  • Browned Foods
  • Broiled Foods
  • Barbequed Foods
  • Fried Foods
  • Grilled Foods
  • Roasted Foods
  • Microwaved Foods
  • Cigarette or Tobacco Smoke
Advanced Glycation End products are called AGEs for short and that's exactly what the do - Age You!

AGEs are the end-products of the glycation process. Glycation can be described as the binding of a glucose molecule to a protein or fatty acid molecule resulting in the formation of a damaged structure.

Cooking foods using heat and without water or other liquids, causes sugars to bind non-enzymatically with proteins or fats to form AGEs.

Here's a Visual Aid - The glycation process is what turns your Thanksgiving Turkey brown and its exactly what can happen to the proteins inside of your body.

Video on Advanced Glycation End Products

The Other Way AGEs are Created

A significant amount of AGEs come from the foods we ingest everyday, but they can also be made inside of your body.

AGEs create damage to your body by a process referred to as "Cross Linking".

Once you've eaten, your body can undergo glycation with the sugars left in your blood and produce AGEs internally.

The glycation process creates proteins in your body that are cross-linked and barely functional. These types of proteins will then accumulate in your body, along with free radicals and inflammation.

And sugars like fructose and galactose undergo glycation at about 10 times the rate as glucose!

Foods high in fructose are most notably high fructose corn syrup which can be found in the yogurt you buy to the ketchup that some of you use as gravy.

High amounts of fructose can also be found in fruits (especially dried), Agave Syrup, and honey.

The best way to deal with this problem is to limit your consumption of sugar especially fructose. By the way, it is in most national brands these days.

How Does Your Body Deal with AGEs?

Your body deals with Advanced Glycation End Products or AGEs very slowly.

The half life of AGEs is about double that of your average cell life.

This means that damage can last for quite some time, especially in your nerve cells, brain cells, eyes, collagen proteins, and your DNA.

Unfortunately, AGEs are highly resistant to the protein renewal that is needed to maintain the healthy tone of body tissues and organs.

And your body's ability to remove AGEs through excretion is pretty limited.

About 10% to 30% of the AGEs you eat are absorbed, about 2/3's are retained in your body, and 1/3 will be eliminated in your urine.

AGEs also have a cumulative effect in your body and are strongly implicated in the formation of plague in your arteries.

These AGEs also like to accumulate in your vital organs.

These are AGE Related Diseases:

  • Type II Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Alzheimer's Disease
  • Cancer
  • Deafness
  • Blindness
  • Obesity
  • Cataracts
  • Wrinkling
  • Impotence

AGEs have also been shown to decrease your body's antioxidant capabilities which includes the reduction of the "Master Antioxidant" Glutathione.

How to Lower Your Levels of AGEs

Cut down or eliminate highly processed foods or junk foods.

Limit the amount of broiled, baked, roasted, grilled, microwaved, toasted, and fried foods that you consume.

Marinating foods in cider vinegar, lemon juice, and dry wines can also help to reduce AGEs.

Eating rare or medium-rare meats will contain fewer AGEs than well-done.

You should consider steaming, boiling, poaching, stewing, braising, or even using a crock pot to cook your foods (especially your fruits & vegetables).

Water prevents these sugars from binding to the protein and fat molecules - preparing food at temperatures less than 250 Degrees F minimizes the formation of AGEs.

Include more fresh raw foods in your diet like low glycemic fruits, green vegetables, and other unprocessed raw foods.

Watch your consumption of sugary foods - avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup and Agave Syrup like the Plague.

A lower intake of sugar in combination with a careful diet in terms of reducing AGEs is optimal for the management of AGE formation.

Shoot for 5,000 - 8,000 AGE kilo units per day at the most instead of the average - 15,000 kilo units. By the way, a broiled 3 oz. steak will put you to about 6,600 kilo units!

Glutathione - The Philosopher's Stone

If there is one molecule that has the ability to transform someone's health or turn it around - it is Glutathione.

Glutathione is very involved with controlling inflammation in your body and with the fighting off of infections.

You will find the highest levels of glutathione in healthy young people and the lowest amount of glutathione will be found in elderly people that are sick.

Glutathione is the "Master" antioxidant and is one of the most important molecules involved with the detoxification process.

Without the cleaning and chelating abilities of glutathione, your cells will begin to decay as toxins accumulate in your body.

Also without this antioxidant, your body will not be able to deal with the increasing amounts of free radicals that attack your cells on a daily basis.

Glutathione is the only antioxidant that can recycle itself. Antioxidants like vitamin C, E, and A help to fight free radicals that age you, but they will turn into a weak free radical themselves - not glutathione!

If we lived in a healthy world, our bodies would be able to replenish its supply of glutathione without a problem - however, that is no longer the case.

We are being bombarded with too many environmental toxins, processed foods, radiation, medications, vaccines, stress, and bad habits like drinking too much coffee or alcohol.

Video Explaining the Importance of Glutathione

The Guardian of Your Cells

Glutathione is one of the most important molecules that your body needs and on a daily basis is involved with:
  • Eliminating Free Radicals
  • Recycling of Other Antioxidants
  • Boosting your Immune System
  • Reducing Inflammation
  • Detoxification of Toxins
  • Better Athletic Performance
  • Slowing the Age Process
  • Improving your Sleep
  • Improving your Heart & Lung Functions
  • Improving your Liver & Kidney Functions
  • Improving your Mental Capabilities
  • Blood Sugar Regulation
  • Increasing your Energy or ATP

The average American gets very little glutathione per day from their food - this plus the inability to make enough glutathione to keep up with the toxins we ingest everyday is what leads to sickness and aging.

However, you can start to turn this around by consuming enough glutathione boosting foods and cutting back on toxins.

Foods that Boost Glutathione

  • Raw or Rare Meats
  • Raw Seafood
  • Raw Goat's Milk
  • Raw Cow's Milk
  • Un-denatured Whey Protein
  • Raw Eggs
  • Asparagus
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Garlic
  • Cabbage
  • Kale
  • Tomatoes
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Watermelon
  • Walnuts

Foods richest in sulfur-containing amino acids are the best sources of glutathione.

If you are Vegan or Vegetarian, you may be at risk for a glutathione deficiency - as animal proteins provide adequate amounts of the sulfur amino acids like cysteine.

Glutathione will be highest in fresh uncooked meats as well as raw milk, but almost no glutathione will be found in cooked meats or pasteurized dairy.

Cooking destroys glutathione as well as storing foods for too long - so eat fresh foods whenever possible.

Lightly cooking foods will also help to retain some of its glutathione content - such as in a rare steak.

Will also Boost Glutathione Production:

  • Moderate Exercise
  • 5 to 10 Minute Cold Shower
  • A Good Night's Sleep

The Alchemy of Glutathione

The power behind glutathione is in its sulfur components. Sulfur is a sticky molecule and has the ability to attach itself to toxins such as mercury.

This makes glutathione the most critical part of the detoxification process - as deadly toxins will stick to glutathione and will be carried out of your body.

Glutathione can be found in every cell of your body and can also be produced by your body. However, the production of this molecule will depend on the availability of glutathione precursors.

Glutathione is made from 3 amino acids - glutamate, cysteine, and glycine - which you can get from consuming foods rich in sulfur.

Glutathione is also Magnesium Dependent and a low magnesium level is associated with dramatic increases in free radical generation as well as glutathione depletion.

Gluatathione requires magnesium for its synthesis along with the 3 amino acids plus ATP - ATP is the molecule that provides cellular energy.

Certain B vitamins will be necessary such as B12, B6 and Folate as well as minerals such as selenium to regulate the production of glutathione.

I suspect that glutathione has an affinity to the precious metal gold - and all that - that implies.

For centuries it has been known that gold, one of the most inert of metals, will react with sulfur and that sulfur-containing compounds will bind to gold.

So maybe to launch yourself into the Golden Age, you will need a good supply of glutathione!

Have a Great 2013,

Kathryn

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