Rebecca’s Books

New Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Soups and Stews, by Rebecca Wood and Leda Scheintaub

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The food reference includes the healing properties of foods; in continuous print since 1983.


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A do it yourself Face Reading book.
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An allergen-free, healthy eating program.
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Identify and remedy problems caused by bacteria, fungi, intestinal parasites and viruses.
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Robust recipes for grains with vegetables, fish, poultry, meat & fruit.
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If You Can’t Eat Grain—You Can Eat Starch Resistant Rice

May 11

Yes, grains are contraindicated for an increasing number of people, as they exacerbate autoimmune disease and leaky gut, or intestinal permeability. If grains challenge your digestive system, here’s a way you can eat rice and be free of uncomfortable side effects like bloating, memory fog, or weight gain.

As strange as it may sound, when rice is cooked and cooled, the starch resists digestion and becomes an amazing health boon. Below you’ll find four excellent reasons to try it, and I’ll conclude with practical tips for using starch resistant (SR) rice, beans and other foods.measure spoons

But first, what is starch resistance? It is a type of starch that resists digestion in the stomach and small intestine, and so it functions rather like a soluble fiber. Because you can’t digest or absorb it, it cannot be stored as fat. But in your large intestine, it becomes dinner for your intestinal flora; they slowly metabolize resistant starch into short-chain fatty acids that have impressive health benefits.

SR rice is not a new-fangled, bioengineered crop; it is cooked rice that’s cooled and then not reheated above 130°F.  As the rice cools, its starch crystalizes into a form that resists digestion in the small intestine.

Here’s how SR rice benefits:

In addition to rice, other foods including beans, potatoes, underripe bananas and various grain products such as breakfast cereals and bread contain resistant starch. There’s even a fabricated starch resistant corn product, Hi-maize (I do not recommend it). So to gain the SR properties of beans or potatoes, for example, cook first and then serve them barely warmed or cold, as in a salad.

If you’re wondering what type of rice works best—brown or white; short, medium or long grain—I asked Paleo nutritionist, Amy Kubal, RD, this very question. She said, “For SR properties, white jasmine rice seems to be the variety best tolerated by folks.”

So let’s get underway. Rinse one cup of white rice very well. Place in a pot with 2 cups of water, salt to taste and a teaspoon of oil. The oil helps keep the grains separate; otherwise, when reheated, the rice tends to gum together. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until done. Let it steam, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Remove the rice to a storage container and cool, either in the refrigerator or on the countertop.

Alternatively, for even more separate grains, add one cup of rice to four cups of boiling salted water and cook, as you would pasta, until tender. Strain, drain and then place the rice in a storage container; cool, either in the refrigerator or on the countertop.

Now use the cold rice in a salad, sushi, soup or pudding, but don’t serve it hot. Or lightly warm the rice, but not above 130°F, because higher temperatures will melt down those desirable SR crystals. So, for example, if you want to have rice in a stir-fry, cook all the other ingredients, then at the very end, over low heat, stir in the rice and mix continuously until the rice is just as hot as is typically the hot water from your kitchen faucet. For a soup, cook the other ingredients and add the rice at the very end, watching carefully to not overheat it. You’ll soon get the hang of it.

As always, when reintroducing a food, try a test spoonful and make sure you’re not reacting to it. If there are no symptoms, enjoy it in moderate portions for one day. Now wait several days before trying it again; then continue to pulse it back into your diet with intervals of several days between. If you’ve been rice free for a while, you have a treat in store!

May all beings be well nourished,

Rebecca

How to Prevent or Resolve Autoimmune Disease

Apr 11

If you suffer from progressively worsening symptoms that baffle your doctor, or if you’re diagnosed with a chronic or strange-sounding disease, then odds are it’s autoimmune related. In autoimmunity, your immune system mistakenly attacks your healthy cells. Autoimmune disease (AD) refers to a varied group of illnesses that involve every system; they are chronic, debilitating and even life threatening.PICKING RADISHES

There are more than 140 types of AD that affect more than 50 million Americans, and 75 percent of them are women.[1] According to a survey by the Autoimmune Diseases Association, more than 45 percent of patients with autoimmune diseases have been labeled chronic complainers in the earliest stages of their illness. In addition, another AARDA survey found that it takes most autoimmune patients up to 4.6 years and nearly 5 doctors before receiving a proper autoimmune disease diagnosis.

Here’s the empowering news. As leaky gut, or increased intestinal permeability, described below, is a necessary precursor to AD, you can prevent or resolve an autoimmune condition by mending your gut. Sarah Ballantyne, PhD, in her must-read book The Paleo Approach: Reverse Autoimmune Disease and Heal Your Body, details how you can accomplish just this.PaleoApproach

But first, even if you say your digestion is good, please read on, because it’s possible to have leaky gut and not have gut symptoms. Yes, while your digestion and bowels may appear normal, leaky gut manifests in more than—I’m going to repeat the number—140 illnesses, including heart failure, colitis, Hashimoto’s disease, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, depression, skin problems, adrenal deficiency, mental illness, and chronic headaches.

On the Wikipedia list of ADs, note that while many conditions are majorly devastating (such as lupus, type 2 diabetes and Graves’ disease), some are quite commonplace (such as arthritis, dermatitis and gastritis).

Leaky gut happens when the normally tight junctions between the cells in the small intestinal wall loosen and allow undigested food particles and toxins to leak into the bloodstream. This breach triggers the immune system into an attack mode. Your best health prevention is to maintain tight (rather than loose) junctions.

So what causes the intestinal junctions to lose their tone? Genetics and environmental pollutants are contributing causes, as are the following factors that you can mitigate:

  • Eating gluten, dairy and other food allergens
  • Taking antibiotics, birth control pills, NSAIDs and some other meds
  • Eating a diet high in carbohydrates and processed foods, including industrial seed oils (such as canola, corn and safflower oil)
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Being under stress
  • Suffering from chronic infections

Plan C in my book Clean and Free details an elimination diet that removes the dietary causes of leaky gut. Or send your photo and diet log to receive a Facial and Dietary Report. In your report, I’ll provide you with an illustrated evaluation of your face revealing the condition of your digestive system, dietary recommendations specific to your condition and changes to look for in your face to discern how your new diet is reversing your autoimmune condition.

May you be well nourished,

Rebecca