DETOX YOUR BODY
Learn how to detox the lymph system. Plus, foods that naturally detox the lymph.
How to support lung health this winter with a detox cleanse.
Colon cleansing is essential to any detox program. Learn how to detox the colon safely.
The liver is the primary organ of detoxification in the body. Learn how to detox the liver safely with this liver detox gude.
Lemon Detox Diet
The lemon detox diet is one of the best and most simple detox diets. Here's a guide and one-gallon recipe.
Fasting with fruit and vegetable juices is a safe and thorough detox method when done properly.
Detox & Weight Loss
Yes, a detox diet will help you lose weight. Before you start any detox diet, read this.
Easy Detox Diet
This weekend detox diet is a safe and gentle detox method, perfect for the detox newbie and the ultra busy.
Essential Fatty Acids
In what can only be termed a quirk of nature, our bodies, though they synthesize fats as a means of storing the energy from sugars and carbohydrates, are unable to use these stored fats for the production of prostanoid hormones. Prostanoid hormones, which were only discovered in the 1960s, are the short-distance message carriers that enable cells to communicate and therefore harmonize with each other. The body needs to have a supply of two kinds of essential fatty acids to manufacture these hormones used by every cell of the body for regulating the activity of the cells. The key word here is ESSENTIAL, and the fats that are required for this purpose are alpha-linolenic acids, more commonly referred to as omega-3 fatty acids, and linolenic acids, or omega-6 fatty acids.
Omega-3 and omega-6 oils are part of a group of fats called unsaturated fatty acids, because their chemical structure is not "saturated" with hydrogen atoms. Food sources for these oils include corn oil, soybean oil, peanut oil, cottonseed oil, linseed or flax oil, fish oil and marine plant oils. The unsaturated quality of these fatty acids makes them more flexible. Consequently, they are liquid at room temperature, unlike butter, for example. Butter and all other animal fats are saturated fats, as are coconut oil and palm kernel oil.
The second major role of essential fatty acids is for use in building cell membranes. Flexible, unsaturated fatty acids are the body's preferred source for building cell membranes. The body uses whatever oil source it has for this purpose, but it does not change the basic composition of the oil it uses. Therefore, the oils that you ingest become the actual cell membranes of your body.
According to Dr. Baker, "Thick and stiff oils are toxic in that they cause an unwelcome rigidity in cell membranes and do not provide suitable raw materials for making hormones."
This rigidity in cell membranes can be seen in physical symptoms such as
cracking finger tips;
patchy dullness of the skin, especially on the face;
mixed oily and dry skin, which in cosmetic advertisements is cometimes called combination skin;
chicken skin which constitutes small, rough bumps on the back of the arms;
alligator skin, usually on the lower legs which develop an irregular quilted appearance with dry patches;
stiff, dry, unmanageable, brittle hair; seborrhea; cradle cap; dandruff; hair loss; and soft fingernails, or brittle fingernails which fray with horizontal splitting.
Other crucial health benefits are derived from the prostanoid hormones derived from essential fatty acids. They keep blood platelets from sticking together, reduce the possibility of blood clots, help remove fluid from the body and open up blood vessels, improving circulation. If there is a deficiency of essential fatty acids in the diet, as there is in the diets of most Americans, a whole range of circulatory problems including high blood pressure can result. This is directly related to the fact that heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States.
There is, fortunately, an easy way to improve many of these problems -- simply taking in a tablespoon a day of flax seed oil or other high quality sources of omega-3 and omega-6 oils. (It's important to note here that the unsaturated nature of these oils makes them very susceptible to oxidation, i.e., rancidity, which can often be caused by conventional seed oil processing methods. Choose only oils that have been "cold-pressed.") In addition, flax seed oil must be refrigerated unless it is purchased in flax seed capsules. It's best used to make salad dressings or to add to cooked foods and should never be used for frying, sauteing, or to coat pans used for baking. Heat makes flax seed oil go rancid.
Meanwhile, a great deal of research continues. Several studies support the premise that alpha-linolenic acid and other omega 3 fatty acids can inhibit cancer formation, can possibly be used for tumor reduction and can even normalize mutated cells. (Johnson, P.V. "Flaxseed Oil and cancer: alpha-linolenic acid and carcinogenesis" in Flaxseed in Human Nutrition, et. S.C. Cunnane and L.U. Thompson. AOCS press, Champaign, IL  pp. 207-218.) Still other research is attempting to discover the role of essential fatty acids in immune system disorders.
Our suggestion is not to wait for the research to come in. Increase your supply of omega-3 oil now. In addition to flax seed oil, high quality, extra virgin, cold-pressed olive oil has been shown to be beneficial by the epidemiological studies that created the phrase "the Mediterranean diet." Another way of increasing flax seed oil in your diet is to grind organic flax seeds (surprisingly inexpensive at your health food store) in a coffee grinder and add them to breakfast cereal and when baking. We use two tablespoons of the seeds and grind them for about ten seconds. If you don't eat cereal for breakfast or bake much, you can stir the ground seeds into a little soy milk, goat's milk, or organic cow's milk to make a mild-tasting paste which is very easy to swallow. The fiber in the ground seeds also makes them very good for keeping your colon clean and healthy. Some people have also found the ground flax seeds to be an extremely effective remedy for constipation.