Category Archives: diet

Are Phytoestrogens in Soy Actually Bad for You?

Ocean Robbins 
April 27, 2022

For decades, some health influencers have waged what’s practically amounted to a PR campaign against soy products. Because soy contains phytoestrogens, which are structurally very similar to the estrogen produced by the human body, these influencers argue that soy is a dangerous food that can cause cancer and other diseases by upsetting our natural hormonal balance. Recent research, however, increasingly shows that phytoestrogens may actually be good for you. So what’s the truth about phytoestrogens? What foods, in addition to soy, contain them? And should you include or avoid them in a balanced, healthy diet?

The 1986 film Little Shop of Horrors starred Audrey II, a Venus flytrap that feasted on human flesh and incited a flower shop clerk to murder two people to satisfy its ravenous appetite.

And the roots of the idea (pun semi-intended) go back much further. Science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke penned “The Reluctant Orchid” in 1956, a story about a houseplant that tries to murder and consume its owner. H.G. Wells’ 1894 short story “The Flowering of the Strange Orchid” imagines a jungle plant that grows spider-like tentacles and emits an intoxicating fragrance that almost lures an adventuring orchid collector to his death.

In short, literature has sometimes convinced us that plants are out to get us.

Phytoestrogens as Antinutrients

And there has been no shortage of contemporary nutrition writers who have, in their own way, also advanced that narrative. They point to what they consider harmful compounds in the plants we eat, which they ominously term “antinutrients.” Phytateslectins, and oxalates often get such negative press.

But the reigning plant-derived nutritional villain, going back decades now, is phytoestrogens. While these compounds are in many plants, the main concern has always been about soy. From cancer to male feminization, nutrient deficiencies to female infertility, some would have us believe that the soybean and its phytoestrogens pose a grave threat to any population that embraces soy products as plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy.

But is it true that the phytoestrogens in soy are harmful? Is soy a real-life analog of Audrey II and the human-destroying orchids imagined by Clarke and Wells? Should you avoid phytoestrogens at all costs? Or is the hype overblown, and might phytoestrogens actually benefit your health as part of a balanced, whole-food-based diet?

What are Phytoestrogens?

estrogen and phytoestrogen
iStock.com/ttsz

Phytoestrogens — literally “estrogens from plants” — are a type of polyphenol found in plant-based foods. There are two main types: flavonoid and non-flavonoid. The difference, as I just discovered when I looked it up, is that non-flavonoids have one phenol ring while flavonoids have two. (I’ll see you on Jeopardy! — “I’ll take ‘mesomeric effect of hydroxyl groups’ for 200, Mayim!”)

Some of the more prevalent flavonoids include isoflavones, coumestans, and prenylflavonoids, among others. The non-flavonoids we tend to hear the most about include lignans and resveratrol. These and other phytoestrogens occur in over 300 different plant species.

Here’s the thing about all phytoestrogens — their structure is close to that of estrogens, a class of human hormones with myriad effects on male and female reproduction, and estradiol, in particular. Because of this similarity, the plant compounds can mimic or otherwise affect the action of estrogens in the body. Sometimes phytoestrogens act just like estrogen and at other times they can actually block estrogenic effects.

If that were the whole story, it’s easy to see why you might be wary of consuming foods high in phytoestrogens. But it turns out that plant estrogens are weaker than estrogens from other sources.

Xenoestrogens

In the interest of comprehensiveness, I’ll mention in passing that there’s another form of estrogens, in addition to the ones produced by the human body (by both women and men) and the ones you get from plants: xenoestrogens. They’re what you get when you add the Greek prefix for “foreign” — xeno.

Xenoestrogens are entirely synthetic chemicals that you can ingest from industrial chemicals such as solvents and lubricants, as well as their byproducts, including plastics, plasticizers, and flame retardants. You can also get exposed to xenoestrogens from pesticides and pharmaceutical agents.

The thing about xenoestrogens is, well, avoid them if you can. They don’t do a body good, and there’s a huge body of evidence that they can disrupt healthy functioning on many levels.

And now back to our regularly scheduled article about phytoestrogens.

Foods That Contain Phytoestrogens

Estrogen-Rich Foods, Menopause Diet
iStock.com/tbralnina

Here’s a not-so-fun article with tables showing the amount of phytoestrogens, in micrograms (abbreviated μg which means one-millionth of a gram), in various plant foods. When you study these tables, perhaps in preparation for your Jeopardy! appearance (“I’ll take ‘fascinating things you didn’t know about cabbage’ for 400, Ken”), you’ll quickly discover that while soy may be the poster child for phytoestrogens in food, it’s far from the only source.

Soy

Among plant foods, fermented and whole soybeans contain the highest concentrations of phytoestrogens, and those appear to be the healthiest ways to consume soy. Fermented soy products include miso and tempeh (the latter boasts whole soybeans). Edamame and tofu are also generally healthy ways for most people to enjoy soy. To avoid GMOs, choose organic soy products. (For more on why, read our article on GMOs.).

Legumes

In addition to soy, other legumes also tend to be high in phytoestrogens — especially garbanzos and green beans.

Sprouted Foods

You’ll also find phytoestrogens in many commonly sprouted plants, including alfalfa, clover, soybean (there it is again!), and mung bean sprouts.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are also foods with phytoestrogens. Pound for pound (or kilogram for kilogram, if you want to get all metric about it), flaxseeds are actually higher in phytoestrogens than soybeans. Also scoring high on the list of foods with phytoestrogens are pistachios, chestnuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, and cashews.

Whole Grains

You can get phytoestrogens from some popular whole grains, including oats, wheat, barley, and rice.

Alliums

Representing the allium family, garlic and onion are no phytoestrogen slouches either.

Vegetables

That’s also true for winter squash, as well as the cruciferous family, including broccolicabbage, and many leafy greens.

Fruit

You can also find phytoestrogens in fresh fruit, including blueberries, peaches, strawberries, raspberries, and dried fruit such as dates and apricots.

Why Do People Think Phytoestrogens are Bad?

Estrogen word written on the book and hormones list.
iStock.com/designer491

So what’s going on here? I mean, that list of foods containing significant amounts of phytoestrogens is also a list of some of the healthiest foods on the planet. Are they good for us in spite of their phytoestrogen content? Or is it possible that the phytoestrogens in food may offer benefits? Let’s first explore the widespread idea that phytoestrogens are bad for us and we should avoid them whenever possible.

Estrogen vs Phytoestrogens

Phytoestrogens are structurally similar to estradiol, the main form estrogen takes in the human body. As such, they can bind to estrogen receptors in our cells and thus have the potential to increase or block estrogenic activity.

Because of this, critics tell us that phytoestrogens disrupt endogenous hormones and keep them from working properly in the body. In particular, critics argue that people with hormonal cancers, and specifically estrogen-sensitive ones, should avoid the estrogen-boosting effects of phytoestrogens.

That’s one of the reasons soy has been singled out for demonization. Eating large quantities of soy-based veggie burgers or downing gallons of soy milk, the theory goes, can trigger breast cancer in women, and can cause men to grow breasts.

That would all be pretty alarming if it was true. But there’s almost no evidence to support it. 

In fact, the opposite appears to be true.

How can that be? Estrogen vs phytoestrogen studies show that while phytoestrogens do bind to estrogen receptors in the body, their estrogenic activity is much weaker than true estrogen, and they may actually block or even oppose the effects of estrogen in some tissues.

Think of a piece of gum fitting into a keyhole; as you cram it in, it takes on something of the shape of the key, but it doesn’t open the door. And it makes it harder for a real key to open the door, too. Phytoestrogens, which are about 1,000 times less potent than the estrogen your body produces, can bind with estrogen receptors and thereby prevent actual estrogen from exerting its effects.

Are There Any Health Benefits of Phytoestrogens?

Walnut is good for your heart and brain
iStock.com/CalypsoArt

In study after study, we find that the foods that are highest in phytoestrogens tend to also be good for heart health and brain health, help to fight obesity and cancer, and promote longevity.

Heart Disease and Phytoestrogens

It’s known that low estrogen levels are a risk factor for the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in women. Phytoestrogen consumption — particularly that of isoflavones — has been associated with lower CVD incidence in both Dutch and Japanese women.

Isoflavones appear to reduce CVD risk by, among other things, helping to dilate blood vessels and thereby lower blood pressure in hypertensive women. And soy and alfalfa extracts, combined with acerola cherry extract, can reduce the harmful effects of “bad” LDL cholesterol.

Phytoestrogens and Cancer

While trials conducted in the 1990s focused on the question of whether phytoestrogens increased breast cancer risk, later studies reversed the hypothesis and began asking whether diets rich in soy could actually prevent the disease. A 2014 meta-analysis found that soy isoflavones lowered the risk of breast cancer in both pre- and postmenopausal women. The twist was that the researchers found this effect only in Asian populations — women in Western countries did not appear to benefit. Whether this is due to the fact that Asian women eat a lot more soy than Western women is still an open question.

Breast cancer surgeon Kristi Funk, MD, is the author of Breasts: The Owner’s Manual. She examined the extensive research about soy consumption in humans and concluded: “Not only is soy safe, it literally drops breast cancer rates by 60% for soy consumers. And if you have breast cancer, it drops recurrence by 60%.”

Soy consumption has also been shown to suppress the development of prostate cancer. Two soy phytoestrogens, in particular, genistein and daidzein, are being studied for their effects on cancer development.

Other studies have found that consuming soy may also reduce your risk of developing lung, thyroid, ovarian, endometrial, and colorectal cancer.

Alleviating Menopause Symptoms with Phytoestrogens

Some of the most uncomfortable symptoms of menopause occur as a woman’s body decreases the production of estrogen. In addition to hot flashes and sweating, menopause is also linked to an increased risk of obesity and osteoporosis.

Because phytoestrogens can increase estrogenic activity, they have been shown to reduce symptoms of menopause, including decreases in bone density that can lead to osteoporosis. And they have the added benefit, unlike synthetic hormone replacement therapy, of not contributing to blood clots.

Weight Management and Phytoestrogens

There’s a robust body of evidence that phytoestrogens can help people achieve and maintain a healthy weight. This is at least in part because phytoestrogens inhibit the life cycle of fat-storing adipocyte cells and can lower concentrations of adipose (fatty) tissue in the body. They can also help you lose weight by reducing the levels of the “starvation” hormone leptin in your body, so you can lose fat without triggering that “OMG I need a giant donut this very minute or something terrible is going to happen!” feeling. This conclusion was supported by a 2013 study that confirmed soy’s appetite-suppressing ability in estrogen-deficient female mice. (Our view on the use of animals in medical research is here.)

Phytoestrogen Impact on Skin Health

Phytoestrogens also appear to confer anti-aging benefits on the skin. They have been shown to increase the body’s production of collagen production and other compounds that are crucial to skin health. They also block some of the damaging effects of UVB radiation and increase blood flow to skin tissue. Clinical trials have shown that oral phytoestrogen supplementation increased both dermal (skin) thickness and collagen production in postmenopausal women.

Immune System Support

Science is just beginning to explore the role phytoestrogens might play in supporting immune function. Genistein, from soy, appears to keep hypersensitive immune systems from overreacting in unhelpful and potentially dangerous ways.

Phytoestrogen Impact on Cognitive Function and Alzheimer’s

The phytoestrogen resveratrol, found in abundance in red grapes, appears to protect against Alzheimer’s by triggering the destruction of certain proteins in the brain that can form plaques. It has also been shown, in mouse models, to inhibit the development of Parkinson’s Disease. And several observational studies of humans have found that consumption of lignans is associated with higher cognitive functioning.

Who Should Avoid or Limit Phytoestrogens?

Doctor making ultrasound of thyroid gland to woman patient in clinic
iStock.com/Ivan-Balvan

As I hope the above section makes clear, the bulk of evidence suggests that phytoestrogens in whole plant foods are beneficial for most people when eaten as part of a balanced diet. But there are still some situations where some people may want to limit their intake.

In the past, it was thought that people with estrogen-positive breast cancer should avoid phytoestrogen, but a growing body of research indicates that the opposite may be true. In fact, many studies show that soy isoflavones are protective against breast cancers because the phytoestrogens attach to the estrogen B cells, blocking the A cells that cause cancer.

Some researchers urge caution, however — especially about the consumption of processed soy protein products, as these have not been studied as extensively as the whole soy foods traditionally eaten in Asian cuisines. Additional unknowns include the cumulative effect of all the phytoestrogens a person has eaten over their lifetime, and how early these foods were introduced.

People with the rare lung disease LAM may also want to limit phytoestrogens, since the LAM cells have estrogen receptors on them, and may proliferate in the presence of high levels of the hormone and potentially of estrogen mimickers, as well.

Another group that may potentially be harmed by excess phytoestrogens is people who have iodine deficiency with hypothyroidism. While the impact of phytoestrogens may vary based on the person’s age, soy isoflavones, in particular, may negatively affect thyroid function in people with hypothyroidism in the absence of sufficient iodine. This is still largely theoretical, however. Small clinical trials haven’t produced a clear association.

Increasing and Decreasing Phytoestrogens in Food

In addition to eating more or fewer of the plant foods that contain phytoestrogens, you can ramp your consumption up or down depending on how those foods are processed.

Fermentation alters the chemical makeup of soy, which can significantly reduce the level of isoflavones. Prolonged cooking, simmering, or soaking can also reduce phytoestrogen content. Steaming causes less phytoestrogen loss than boiling or frying.

And on a different but related note, your gut microbiota play a key role in the bioactivity and bioavailability of phytoestrogens, as they are the entities that decide what to turn phytoestrogens into.

Recipes with Phytoestrogen Foods

Not only will you get plenty of phytonutrients from each of the dishes below, but you’ll also get lots of nutrition overall, like fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals.

Ocean’s Savory Oatmeal is super tasty and brimming with nutrition, including phytonutrients from the flax and pumpkin seeds. Crunchy Kale Slaw makes a fun, fresh, and crispy snack, condiment, or side and contains a huge amount of nutrition, including phytonutrients from the kale, cabbage, and tahini. And Tofu and Broccoli Stir-Fry is an absolutely delicious, phytonutrient-rich meal with its tofu, broccoli, and garlic. It may seem like lots of ingredients and steps, but each of the three sections is pretty simple to create!

1. Ocean’s Savory Oatmeal

A favorite of mine, and perhaps an about-to-be new favorite of yours, this savory oatmeal will leave you feeling satisfied, energized, and nourished. It’s filled with fiber, protein, and phytonutrients, including phytoestrogens in the flax and pumpkin seeds. It’s also a great way to use that Instant Pot! Don’t own an Instant Pot? No problem! Be sure to check out the stovetop directions in the Chef’s Notes.

2. Crunchy Kale Slaw

This crunchy and tasty slaw offers lots of nutrition in exchange for very little time since it requires only a little shredding and zero cooking. Kale, cabbage, and tahini are three plant-based foods that are rich in many nutrients including phytoestrogens. Enjoy this slaw solo as a crunchy snack, as a side dish to your main meal, or as a condiment on top of tacos and wraps.

3. Tofu and Broccoli Stir-Fry

This phytonutrient-rich recipe may look like lots of steps, but if you break up each component (tofu, sauce, and veggies) into individual sections, it will come together easy-peasy. First, prepare your tofu and place it in the oven. Next, prepare your sauce while the tofu is cooking (it only takes a few minutes!). Finally, make your veggies, also while the tofu is cooking. Once the tofu is ready, your meal will be ready for simple assembling! If you’re wondering, tofu, broccoli, and garlic are the phytonutrient superstars in this dish.

Say Yes to Plant-Based Phytoestrogenic Foods

Phytoestrogens are found in a number of plant foods. Sometimes they mimic estrogen activity in the body, and sometimes they suppress it, which makes for a lot of curious (and confused) scientists. Although there’s long been a question over whether phytoestrogens are bad for you — especially in regards to cancer — the research shows they are, in fact, beneficial in many ways. For most people, whole plant-based foods that may contain phytoestrogens are healthy when consumed as part of a healthy and balanced diet.

Tell us in the comments:

  • Do you eat soy-based foods? If so, which ones are your favorites?
  • Has this article cleared up any confusion in your mind about soy and other phytoestrogen-containing plant foods? What’s your new understanding?
  • What foods will you add more of to your diet to get the benefit of phytoestrogens?

FDA Launches Investigation Into Popular Breakfast Cereal After Numerous Reports of People Falling Ill

Julian Conradson
April 19, 2022 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has reportedly opened an investigation into Lucky Charms Cereal after hundreds of people have filed reports claiming to have gotten sick after eating it.

Some of the most common side effects that have been reported by consumers include nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting after eating the extremely popular snack, according to hundreds of incident reports submitted online to the food safety website ‘iwaspoisoned.com.’

Following the large wave of reports, the FDA officially opened an investigation of its own this month after the agency had received over 100 reports in addition to the ones submitted online to ‘iwaspoisoned.com.’

While the investigation is still in its early stages, the agency did release a statement earlier this week, stating that it “takes seriously any reports of possible adulteration of a food that may also cause illnesses or injury” and would provide updates when they become available.

Additionally, the number of people who have been affected by the mild conditions after eating Lucky Charms might be even higher than originally thought. According to The Wall Street Journal, “thousands of people” have already reported symptoms like nausea after eating the cereal.

As of right now, even the producers of Lucky Charms have no answers on what could be causing the reports of illnesses, or even if the reports are linked to their cereal at all. The parent company, General Mills, announced it had conducted its own internal review and has not been able to find anything tying the cereal to those who have reported falling sick after eating it.

For the time being, the cause of Leprechaun tummy will just have to be chalked up to being ‘magically suspicious.’

5 Medicinal Mushrooms You Can Grow in Your Home Garden or Forage in Your Backyard

EDITORS NOTE: Our friends at Ascent Nutrition have an amazing mushroom blend in capsule form, check them out HERE

Having a home garden is a must for preppers, especially if your goal is to be more self-sufficient. If you want to grow medicinal mushrooms in your garden, read on to learn more. (h/t to TheOrganicPrepper.com)

Before you decide which mushrooms to grow, take note that they require more hard work to grow compared to regular fruits and vegetables. If you can’t grow them in your garden, you have the option to forage for mushrooms.

Garden giant mushrooms

According to a study, garden giant mushrooms contain antioxidants. Rat subjects that consumed the mushrooms also had lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

Grow garden giant mushrooms broken shade with well-drained, moist soil. Mix mushroom mycelium with fresh hardwood chips or sawdust. Avoid chips or sawdust from fragrant woods such as cedar, eucalyptus, juniper, pine or redwood. If you don’t have wood chips, use fresh straw instead of hay.

Garden giants can produce from spring through fall. Cut them loose, snap them off or twist them off. Leave a few fruits in the patch for more mycelium production so you can keep harvesting.

Giant puffball

Research suggests that giant puffball mushrooms have cholesterol-lowering abilities. The mushrooms are also used to treat traumatic hemorrhage and oral bleeding.

Giant puffballs contain calvacin, a compound that is believed to be an anti-cancer agent.

Compared to garden giants, giant puffballs are more difficult to cultivate on purpose. Fortunately, you can forage for them if you know where to look.

You can find giant puffballs in timber areas and meadows, fields or even your own yard. Giant puffballs are widespread and fairly common in many areas throughout America.

Pick puffballs during their immature stage, which is when their flesh is perfect for eating. After that, puffballs begin to rot out and become inedible.There are different varieties of true puffballs, but the giant ones are the most popular. Once you take a puffball from the ground, it has an edible span of about two weeks.

Lion’s mane mushrooms

Lion’s mane mushrooms are well-known for what they can do for your nervous system. Studies show that lion’s mane mushrooms can stimulate the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) in those with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s or dementia. In turn, this helps protect neurons and cognitive ability.

Data from a study on mice also revealed that lion’s mane mushrooms can help partially recover locomotor frailty and protect the cerebellum. This implies that any age-related decline in movement ability originating from the brain could potentially be slowed with lion’s mane mushrooms.

The mushrooms also contain erinacine and hericenones that can raise dopamine levels, increase dopamine receptors and help prevent depression.

The immune system also benefits from lion’s mane mushrooms because they can stimulate the production of anti-inflammatory substances from macrophages and cytokines. The mushrooms also help to protect the liver from injury caused by specific enzymes. (Related: Organic functional mushrooms: best immune-boosting medicine from Mother Nature.)

Lion’s mane mushrooms also offer benefits for gut health since they can help the beneficial bacteria Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus to colonize the intestines even better than they normally would.

There are different species of lion’s mane and they’re generally white in color. Sometimes, lion’s mane is tinged with yellow or pink.

When foraging for lion’s mane mushrooms, look for the tell-tale icicle-like “teeth” hanging from the central stalk. While they start off relatively short, these teeth can grow longer than one centimeter long or even longer.

If you split open a mature lion’s mane mushroom, you’ll see that there’s little body to speak of and a large cluster of icicle-like mushroom teeth. Lion’s mane mushrooms grow on beech trees and hardwood species like oak and maple.

Oyster mushrooms

Oyster mushrooms are often considered the easiest to grow. They are full of lovastatin, which can help lower one’s cholesterol levels. There are a wide variety of oyster mushrooms.

In one study that tested grey, pink and white oyster mushrooms, scientists reported that the grey-colored oyster mushrooms had the highest levels of lovastatin.

Shiitake mushrooms

Like oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms can help lower cholesterol.

Shiitake mushrooms are full of eritadenine, another chemical compound that also helps lower one’s cholesterol levels. The mushrooms are also rich in beta-glucans, which limits the gut’s ability to absorb cholesterol.

The compounds also help reduce inflammation within the body.

Beta-glucans are good for your body’s ability to produce white blood cells. The compounds also offer benefits for the immune system.

Shiitake mushrooms are also a good source of selenium.

However, some people have a sensitivity to eating too many shiitake mushrooms because of the chemical lentinan. The compound may cause a skin rash that can last for one to two weeks if you eat too many shiitake mushrooms.

Mushrooms are an amazing superfood, and you should grow them in your home garden if you can. Alternatively, you can learn how to identify them and forage for mushrooms in the wilderness or even in your backyard.

Watch the video below to know how mushrooms can boost your brain health.

Trump Suggests Health a Barrier to Possible 2024 Run

 Ben Whedon
 April 8, 2022 

[Editors note: While Nancy Pelosi’s claim that the former commander-in-chief was “morbidly obese” may have been a slight overstatement, I think we can all agree that the man’s apparent penchant for fast food is probably shaving years off of his life.

Fast food contains what could be considered a weaponized amount of polyunsaturated fatty acids, you can learn more about the dangers of PUFA’s HERE]


Former President Donald Trump in a Thursday interview with the Washington Post conceded that poor health could prevent him from seeking the presidency in a 2024 run.

“You always have to talk about health,” he said. “You look like you’re in good health, but tomorrow, you get a letter from a doctor saying come see me again. That’s not good when they use the word ‘again.'”

Trump has not formally announced a 2024 bid, but has teased it in the past. He further told the Post, “I don’t want to comment on running, but I think a lot of people are going to be very happy by my decision.”

The former commander-in-chief insisted his health remained strong.

He has, however, drawn criticism for his physique in the past. In May 2020, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dubbed Trump “morbidly obese,” prompting a slew of speculative articles on the technical veracity of the claim.

Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas), Trump’s former White House physician, spoke of Trump’s health in 2018, saying, “I told the president that if he had a healthier diet over the last 20 years, he might live to be 200 years old,” the Epoch Times reported.

The former president is known for his love of fast food. In February 2019, he hosted the Clemson football team to celebrate their victory in the national championship, amid a government shutdown. As the kitchen staff were largely furloughed, Trump instead opted to purchase a plethora of hamburgers and sides from various fast food chains, per The Guardian.

Cancer Linked Glyphosate Discovered In All Tested Children’s Foods Made From Oats


ARJUN WALIA

APRIL 5, 2022

Significant levels of the weed killing chemical glyphosate have been found in all oat derived samples that were sampled by the Environmental Working Group (EGW), a public health organization.

The report, released in 2018, was published by Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., senior science advisor and Alexis Temkin, Ph.D, Toxicologist. They explain,

Help Support Our FOIA Efforts: Our team is in a back and forth with our government to get access to specific COVID documents that may show government tried to hide treatment options in favor of vaccination campaigns. Help us with clerical and legal fees to obtain these documents by donating today. Click here to Donate.

“Major food companies like General Mills continue to sell popular children’s breakfast cereals and other foods contaminated with troubling levels of glyphosate, the cancer-causing ingredient in the herbicide Roundup. The weedkiller, produced by Bayer-Monsanto, was detected in all 21 oat-based cereal and snack products sampled in a new round of testing commissioned by the Environmental Working Group.”

The tests detected glyphosate in all 28 samples of products made with conventionally grown oats. All but two of the 28 samples had levels of glyphosate above EWG’s health benchmark of 160 parts per billion, or ppb.

According to EWG,

“Products tested by Anresco Laboratories in San Francisco include 10 samples of different types of General Mills’ Cheerios and 18 samples of different Quaker brand products from PepsiCo, including instant oatmeal, breakfast cereal and snack bars. The highest level of glyphosate found by the lab was 2,837 ppb in Quaker Oatmeal Squares breakfast cereal, nearly 18 times higher than EWG’s children’s health benchmark.”

You can view the complete results of the tests and each product tested, here.

In April of 2018, internal emails obtained from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) showed that scientists found glyphosate on a wide range of commonly consumed food, to the point that they were finding it difficult to identify a food without the chemical on it.

Although Quaker and General Mills have said there is no cause for concern given their products meet the legal standards, there is a plethora of literature suggesting no amount of ingested glyphosate is safe.

“It is commonly believed that Roundup is among the safest pesticides…Despite its reputation, Roundup was by far the most toxic among the herbicides and insecticides tested. This inconsistency between scientific fact and industrial claim may be attributed to huge economic interests, which have been found to falsify health risk assessments and delay health policy decisions.”

R Mesnage (et al., Biomedical Research International, 2014, article ID: 179691

These particular findings by EWG came after a landmark decision in a San Francisco court that ordered Monsanto (now Bayer) to pay $289 million in damages to Dewayne Johnson, who at the time was a 46 year old former school groundskeeper. The jury found that the Roundup weedkiller caused Johnson’s cancer and that it had failed to warn him about the health risks of exposure.

In 2020, the New York Times reported the that the company dished out $10 billion to cover approximately 95,000 cases.

This is why the EWG and other health conscious groups advocate for organic foods. Tests have consistently shown a significant reduction in harmful substances, like glyphosate, in organic food. In many cases, no traces of these substances can be found in organic food, but in some cases they are.

In 2019, a study published in the journal Environmental Research found that an organic diet significantly reduced the pesticide levels in children and adults. Their urine was used to measure pesticide levels and in just one week pesticide levels dropped 60 percent. Other studies have found a 90 percent reduction.

The most significant drops occurred in a class of nerve agent pesticides called organophosphates. This class includes chlorpyrifos, a highly toxic pesticide linked to increased rates of autism, learning disabilities and reduced IQ in children. Organophosphates are so harmful to children’s developing brains that scientists have called for a full ban.

study published in the British Journal of Nutrition outlines a significant difference in nutritional content when it comes to organic food compared to non-organic food.

Many substances we now spray on our food were  initially developed as nerve gases for chemical warfare. They are linked to a wide variety of diseases, from cancer, to alzheimer’s, parkinson’s, liver diseases and several others.

This is why it’s not surprising that a eating organic foods free from pesticides is strongly correlated with a dramatic reduction in the risk of cancer, according to a study published in 2018 in an American Medical Association journal. The observational study led by a team of French government scientists tracked the diets of nearly 69,000 people. Four years later, those who consumed the most organic foods were 25 percent less likely to develop cancer. Of course, there are many limitations to the study and other factors that could play a role as to why the organic group experienced less instances of cancer.

There are so many examples of products approved for mass use that should not have been approved. There are countless examples of corruption and collusion between governments, federal health regulatory agencies and the companies that manufacture these products. Science that has called into question their safety has long been ignored, while industry science that claims these products are completely safe and harmless to human health as well as the environment as been used for their approval.

Over the years employees from health agencies, like the Centres For Disease Control (CDC), have been emphasizing this as well. For example, in 2016 group of more than a dozen senior scientists lodged an ethics complaint alleging the federal agency is being influenced by corporate and political interestsThey called themselves SPIDER. Scientists Preserving Integrity, Diligence and Ethics in Research.

They stated,

“We are a group of scientists at CDC that are very concerned about the current state of ethics at our agency. It appears that our mission is being influenced and shaped by outside parties and rogue interests. It seems that our mission and Congressional intent for our agency is being circumvented by some of our leaders. What concerns us most, is that it is becoming the norm and not the rare exception. Some senior management officials at CDC are clearly aware and even condone these behaviours. Others see it and turn the other way. Some staff are intimated and presse to do things they now are not right.

We have representatives from across the agency that witness this unacceptable behaviour. It occurs at all levels and in all of our respective units. These questionable and unethical practices threaten to undermine our credibility and reputation as a trusted leader in public health.”

It’s good to see that glyphosate is now being banned in multiple countries and cities. For example, as of Jan. 1, 2022, the sale and domestic use of 39 pesticides, for a total of more than 100 separate products, have been illegal in the city of Montreal. This includes products that contain glyphosate.

In 2021, Bayer announced that they will stop selling Roundup for residential use in 2023 in the U.S. Home and Garden Market.

It’s unfortunate that we had to wait decades for these initiatives for something that has been seemingly obvious for a long time. How many other products out there can you think of that are clearly harmful for human and environmental health that have been approved by governments? Billions of pounds of glyphosate have been sprayed across our planet. What type of intelligent species would do such a thing?

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What Is Sesame? Explore the Benefits & Uses of Sesame Seeds and Tahini

Ocean Robbins 
March 30, 2022 

Medically reviewed by Laurie Marbas, MD

Comedian Mitch Hedberg wondered about sesame seeds a lot. Primarily, he was concerned about how they stick to hamburger buns. Do they have adhesive backing on just one side? And who has the time to peel and stick all those tiny seeds to the buns?

Hedberg’s musings about sesame seeds were limited to their relationship to buns because he’d probably never seen them in any other context. Had he grown up in the Middle East or East Asia, though, his sesame set would have featured jokes about foods like tahini, halvah, sushi, and sukiyaki. In recent decades, the tiny and tasty seeds have grown in global popularity and versatility as their cuisines of origin have jumped borders and gone international.

While an individual sesame seed may be small, don’t underestimate the nutritional value of a bunch of them. And if you haven’t experienced the wonders of sesame beyond a bun or an everything bagel, you may enjoy getting to know the much bigger and more delicious world of sesame seeds and sesame products.

In this article, we’ll say “open sesame” to the mystery of the “Queen of Oilseeds.” We’ll explore their health benefits, find out about potential downsides, and brainstorm delicious and creative ways to include sesame seeds and sesame products in your diet.

Ready? With all due respect to Big Bird and Grover (insert Sesame Street theme song music here), let me tell you how to get, how to get to sesame seed.

What Is Sesame?

sesame field
iStock.com/jxfzsy

Archeological evidence suggests that sesame is one of the oldest cultivated crops in the world. The oldest sesame seeds found in an archeological context come from the Indus Valley site at Harappa, now in Pakistan, which dates back 4,000–4,600 years. (I can only imagine how hard it would be to find a seed that old in a giant mound of earth. Hopefully one of the diggers didn’t just drop one from between their teeth after lunch.)

Sesame seeds come from the Sesame or Sesamum indicum L. plant, an oilseed crop of the family Pedaliaceae, which to my surprise did not include unicycle ferns or penny-farthing thistles. A prolific producer, one sesame seedpod can produce hundreds of seeds. Botanists think the plant originated in what is now India or Africa; and considering that it still grows wild in Africa, that’s probably a solid guess.

Sesame was likely domesticated somewhere on the Indian subcontinent and probably spread from there to Mesopotamia around 2000 BCE (that’s a lot of sesame spread!) The Babylonians used the seeds to make the only kind of oil they cooked with, and news of the innovation got to Egypt around 500 years later. By 200 BCE, the Chinese had been growing sesame long enough to make it a common staple crop.

To this day, in some cultures, sesame is regarded as the “Queen of Oilseeds” due to its ability to stay fresh and tasty for a long time, resisting oxidation and rancidity.

Hulled vs Unhulled Sesame Seeds

sesame on wood spoon
iStock.com/Charboon_photo

When you buy sesame seeds, you can get them either hulled or unhulled. The hulls are the shells, or outer coverings, of the seed. Hulled sesame seeds have had this covering removed, and unhulled sesame seeds have an intact outer shell.

When shopping for sesame seeds, you might see them characterized as black, brown, or white. Black and brown sesame seeds are the unhulled version (the outer coating is actually kind of golden brown) of seeds, while white sesame seeds are the hulled ones.

Black and brown sesame seeds boast a nutty taste and slightly sweet flavor and aroma that you can enhance by toasting. White seeds — the ones you’ll typically find in a Western grocery store — have a milder flavor.

Black sesame seeds show up often in Asian cuisine. These have a stronger, earthier, and sometimes bitter flavor, along with a crunchier texture.

Other Sesame Seed Products

Cultures around the world have turned raw or roasted sesame seeds into flavorful and versatile ingredients, as well as cherished items of various cuisines.

Tahini

Homemade tahini paste from ground sesame seeds
iStock.com/NelliSyr

The Middle East gave us tahini, a condiment or sauce used in Middle Eastern cooking. Tahini is made from ground sesame seeds, either raw or roasted. Tahini is also considered a type of seed butter and is vegan.

There are many uses for tahini, but if you’re a traditionalist, you can drizzle tahini over falafel. You can also include it as a whole-foods fat source in dressings, sauces, and dips. Classic hummus consists of two main ingredients — chickpeas and tahini — along with flavorings like garlic and an acid like lemon juice.

You can buy a bottle of tahini at your leisure, as it’s shelf-stable until opened, for at least a year or two. Once opened, keep your tahini refrigerated so the oil doesn’t separate, and use it within 3–6 months (our recipes below will ensure that it doesn’t last that long). If you’re not sure if your tahini is still viable, check for a rancid odor, or mold forming on the inside of the jar or lid. Homemade tahini may go bad faster; you can slow this down by storing it in an airtight container. And make it in small batches so you can use it up before it turns towards sesame seed heaven, or wherever it is that sesame seeds go when their edible life is drawing to a close.

Sesame Paste

An Asian take on tahini (or is tahini a Middle Eastern take on sesame paste?), sesame paste comes from toasted, unhulled sesame seeds. Sesame paste uses abound in Chinese and other Asian cuisines — use it in soups, as well as noodle and rice dishes.

Sesame paste is typically darker in color than tahini and has roughly the same consistency. But you can also store it like tahini: you can keep sesame paste in its original airtight jar for up to two years, and once opened, refrigerate it and use it within six months.

Sesame Oil

Sesame oil is a staple cooking oil and condiment ingredient in many Asian cuisines. If you use oil, you can use light sesame oil as a neutral cooking oil, and reserve toasted sesame oil as a flavoring for sauces, soups, and other dishes. With sesame oil, the darker the color, the stronger the flavor.

Both types of sesame oil are highly stable and resist oxidation. You can store light sesame oil for up to a year at room temperature. Toasted sesame oil has a slightly shorter shelf life, but will still last for many months if you keep it refrigerated.

If you choose to use sesame oil, do so in moderation, as it’s very high in omega-6 fatty acids. While both omega-6s and omega-3s are essential nutrients, most people consume way more omega-6s than omega-3s, and it’s important to even out the ratio.

Halvah

half
iStock.com/LayLaynr

Halvah is a Middle Eastern dessert that traditionally consists of ground sesame seeds, sugar, and other sweeteners and flavorings, such as honey, pistachios, and chocolate. The texture is solid, almost like a block of fudge, but when you break or bite into it, you’ll find it somewhat crumbly and chalky.

You don’t have to refrigerate halvah, but many people do because the cold keeps it firmer. Unrefrigerated, it will last up to six months, but realistically, if you like it you’ll find it hard not to gobble it up well before then.

Note that some halvah brands use refined sweeteners and natural flavorings, so make sure to read the ingredients before purchasing.

Sesame Flour

Sesame flour is a gluten-free baking flour made from raw, unhulled, and ground sesame seeds. You can use it just like almond flour in gluten-free crackers, breads, batters, and various baked goods.

Some varieties are labeled “defatted,” which just means the seeds are cold-pressed to remove the oil before they’re ground. Sesame flour, defatted or whole, lasts about 6–12 months at room temperature.

Sesame Seed Nutrition

All sesame seeds are good sources of protein, healthy carbohydrates, fiber, fatty acids, B vitamins, and minerals like copper, calcium, iron, magnesium, and manganese. Unhulled seeds contain more calcium, iron, potassium, and other minerals, while hulled seeds are slightly higher in folate and have a higher fat concentration and higher levels of fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins A and E.

All types of sesame seeds are high in phytochemicals, including the lignans sesamin and sesamolin (“S is for sesamolin, that’s good enough for me”) that act like antioxidants, scavenging free radicals and reducing inflammation. If you really want to get your antioxidants on, go for the black sesame seeds, which are often studied for their potent health benefits thanks to their stronger antioxidant activity.

Sesame Nutrition Facts

You can see a comparison of the different kinds of sesame products’ nutrition below:

  • 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds, whole, dried: 51.6 calories, 1.59g protein, 4.5g fat, 2.1g total carbohydrates, 1.06 fiber (Source: USDA)
  • 2 tablespoons of tahini: 190 calories, 5g protein, 16g fat, 6g carbohydrates, 3g fiber (Source: USDA)
  • 1 ounce of halvah: 159 calories, 6g protein, 8g fat, 13g carbohydrates, 2g fiber (Source: USDA)
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame oil: 120 calories, 0g protein, 13.6g fat, 0g carbohydrates, 0g fiber (Source: USDA)
  • 1 ounce of sesame flour: 94 calories, 14.2g protein, .5g fat, 10g carbohydrates, 0g fiber (Source: USDA)

Benefits of Sesame Seeds

Tahini avocado making of - sesame seed, close-up
iStock.com/Drbouz

Science is catching up on centuries of folk wisdom regarding the health benefits of sesame seeds.

Anti-Arthritic Benefits

2019 study out of Iran found that supplementation with sesamin reduced inflammatory biomarkers in women with rheumatoid arthritis. Those in the sesamin group also reported less pain than those given a placebo.

Anti-inflammatory Benefits

A 2021 meta-analysis of seven studies on the anti-inflammatory effects of sesame consumption showed that eating sesame seeds reduced some inflammatory biomarkers. It’s not clear whether these effects will be more pronounced and widespread through the consumption of seeds, oil, or supplements; like almost every nutrition study ever written, the paper ends with a call for further research.

Sesame seeds also seem to be protective of the heart. The lignan sesamin apparently does a lot of the heavy lifting here. As one study put it, there’s evidence that the compound is “anti-hypertensive, anti-atherogenic, anti-thrombotic, anti-diabetic, and anti-obesity,” which I’d pay good money to hear Big Bird and Elmo sing as a duet, with Zoe translating for the rest of us: “against high blood pressure, against injuries to blood vessel walls, against dangerous blood clots, against diabetes, and against gaining too much weight.”

Lowering LDL Cholesterol

A small 2014 study of men suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee found that 40 grams per day of sesame seeds lowered their total cholesterol, and more significantly, their LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. Sesame oil also passed that test, decreasing LDL levels while maintaining the “good” HDL cholesterol levels in humans and laboratory rats, mice, and rabbits. (Our view on the use of animals in medical research is here.)

Anticancer Benefits

Sesame seeds may also fight cancer, thanks partly to the potent antioxidant lignans sesamin and sesamol. And sesamol’s big brother sesamolin has been shown to induce apoptosis (a process whereby damaged cells essentially self-destruct for the good of the organism; something that stops working in cancerous cells) in leukemia, lymphoma, and colon cancer cells.

Good for Athletic Performance

Sesame seeds can improve athletic performance, according to a 2017 study conducted with 20 ​teenage Brazilian football players (you may know the game as soccer). Half the players consumed two tablespoons of sesame seeds a day during 28 days of hard training, and the other half received a placebo.

How do you create a placebo that will fool people into thinking they’re eating sesame seeds when they’re not? I’m glad you asked — I had the same question. The trick, according to the study, was to grind the actual sesame seeds into a paste and sweeten them with honey. The placebo then consisted of honey, maltodextrin, cow’s milk, and artificial caramel food coloring. There — now you can open a restaurant called Placebo Sesame Cafe.

The young athletes who consumed the actual sesame seeds experienced less muscle damage, less oxidative stress, less systemic inflammation, and improved aerobic performance.

Brain Benefits

Sesame seeds may be good for your brain and nervous system. Black sesame seeds appear to contain a compound that interferes with amyloid plaque formation in the brain, the very process associated with the ravages of Alzheimer’s. In 2020, a team of Japanese researchers showed that sesaminol prevented cellular changes associated with Parkinson’s disease in test tube studies.

Another team out of Japan found that 12 weeks of supplementation with sesamin and another compound, astaxanthin, improved cognitive function in people aged 50–79 who exhibited symptoms of mild cognitive impairment. Specifically, those taking the active supplements gained in psychomotor and processing speeds compared to placebo controls.

Antidiabetic Benefits

To round out the research on sesame, it also appears to help prevent and manage diabetes due to its hypoglycemic effects. A 2021 meta-analysis of the eight randomized controlled trials of sesame compounds on blood glucose found that they significantly decreased fasting blood sugar. And a 2019 clinical trial out of Pakistan used white sesame oil not only to lower fasting blood sugar and A1C levels in type 2 diabetics but to improve their liver and kidney functions as well.

Sesame Risks

With sesame seeds, it’s not always a sunny day where the air is sweet.

Sesame Allergy

Sesame has become a major allergen over the past two decades, likely due to the increased use of sesame seed and oil-containing products in Europe and North America.

Sesame’s status as the ninth major food allergen was codified by the US government’s Food Allergy Safety, Treatment, Education, and Research (FASTER) Act on April 23, 2021. (I hope the position of US Acronymer Laureate pays well, it’s an important job —  “Food Allergy Research and Treatment — no, that won’t work…”) The required labeling of products that contain sesame or have been manufactured or packaged anywhere near sesame goes into effect on January 1, 2023.

In Israel, a country that takes its sesame seriously, only cow’s milk was found to be a more common cause of anaphylaxis (that’s an extreme allergic reaction that involves all sorts of unpleasant and potentially life-threatening symptoms, including facial swelling, heart palpitations, and inability to breath). Sesame’s place near the top of this list is probably due to near-universal early exposure and heavy consumption of sesame-containing foods in Israel.

Not every allergic reaction to sesame is so severe; sometimes all a sufferer might experience is a mild case of hives. But if you have a sesame allergy, it is recommended to keep an epinephrine injection device like an Epi-pen with you at all times, as epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis regardless of the trigger. And of course, avoid eating sesame seeds in any form.

Oxalates

Oxalates are compounds in certain foods that, consumed in very high amounts, could predispose you to calcium-oxalate kidney stones, which are what you should see pictured when you look up “No fun” in the dictionary. And sesame seeds contain a heck of a lot of oxalates: according to food science, almost 2,800 milligrams of oxalic acid per 100 grams of sesame seeds.

Arguably, this level of oxalate exposure becomes a problem if you’re consuming sesame seeds by the bucketful. But 100 grams is actually a lot of sesame seeds — around half a cup — and as most servings of sesame seeds tend to be a single tablespoon (15 grams) or less, using the seeds as a topping or condiment doesn’t really raise oxalate alarms.

And other sesame products contain much lower amounts of oxalate due to heating and processing, which destroys them. The good news is that because sesame seeds are also high in potassium, calcium, and phytochemicals, all of which moderate the effects of oxalates, they’re generally not a problem for most people.

See our article here for more on oxalates.

Phytoestrogens

Sesame seeds contain lignans, which are types of phytoestrogens. Estrogen is a hormone found in animal-derived foods, and phytoestrogens are plant compounds that look and act enough like true estrogen to be able to bind to estrogen receptors in your body.

The similarities have caused some food writers and bloggers to worry about the effects of these lignans and other phytoestrogens on our sex hormones.

The best-known phytoestrogen controversy is over soy and the development of “man boobs” — which turns out to have no real basis in fact. (For more on the truth about soy, see this article.)

There doesn’t appear to be an evidentiary basis for phytoestrogen concerns in sesame seeds, either. Studies show that while phytoestrogens do bind to estrogen receptors in the body, their estrogenic activity is much weaker than true estrogen, and they may actually block or even oppose the effects of estrogen in some tissues. Think of a piece of gum fitting into a keyhole; as you cram it in, it takes on something of the shape of the key, but it doesn’t open the door. And it makes it harder for a real key to open the door, too.

In addition to their potentially beneficial antiestrogenic effects on some tissues, phytoestrogens offer a number of health benefits, including lowering blood pressure, reducing the frequency of hot flashes in menopausal women, and reducing the risk of hormone associated cancers.

Acrylamide

Roasted sesame seeds and related products may contain acrylamide, a potential carcinogen that is formed in certain foods during cooking or processing at high temperatures.

Acrylamide formation may be a result of the Maillard reaction, which is browning from cooking or processing due to a chemical reaction between an amino acid and a reducing sugar, and not the nasty look you get when you surprise a duck.

Roasted or toasted sesame products — which can include seeds, tahini, sesame paste, halvah, and sesame oil — have been found to contain varying amounts of acrylamide. A few are high enough that the state of California puts a Prop 65 warning on them, signifying that prolonged exposure may increase the risk of cancer.

The testing of sesame products in Turkey, however, found that traditional sesame foods like halvah and tahini have low levels of acrylamide, and that you’re more likely to be exposed to high levels from foods like french fries and baked goods.

You can take steps to limit your exposure to acrylamide. If you stir-fry with sesame oil, heat the pan at most to 170°C (338°F), and don’t use toasted sesame oil for frying. Even better, replace the oil in your stir-fries with water or broth. And add a small amount of cold sesame oil after the dish has been prepared if you want that rich and nutty sesame flavor with minimal acrylamide exposure.

The best way to avoid acrylamides from sesame seeds is to eat them raw, and use sesame products like raw tahini — either store-bought or homemade.

How to Store & Use Sesame Seeds

Sesame in small glass on white background
iStock.com/lantapix

Even though they resist rancidity better than most other seeds and nuts, sesame seeds aren’t fully immune to spoilage. Because of their high oil content, hulled sesame seeds are kept best refrigerated or frozen in an airtight container after opening. You can keep them for up to three months without refrigeration, up to six months in the fridge, and up to a year in the freezer.

Sesame seeds enhance both savory and sweet dishes. You can sprinkle them on just about anything — oatmeal, power bowls, stir-fries, noodle dishes, salads, appetizers, side dishes, and soups.

Would you like to get your mouth watering with all the great ways you can add sesame seeds to your menu? If so, let’s not waste any time — here are some sesame and tahini recipes that will nourish your body and delight your palate.

Sesame Recipes

Tahini is an essential ingredient in any plant-based kitchen because of its versatility — it can add creamy texture, nutty flavor, and essential nutrients to just about any dish. Sesame Sunflower Chia Bites incorporate nutrient-packed seeds with tahini, making them a good source of protein, fiber, and healthy fats to keep you energized and satisfied. Sesame seeds not only give the Asian Black Rice Salad a finishing touch of color, but add calcium and phytonutrients to boot, plus some fun crunch! Finally, the Turmeric Tahini Sauce gets its scrumptious flavor and creamy texture from dreamy tahini.

1. Sesame Sunflower Chia Bites

Sesame Sunflower Chia Bites boast nutrient-packed seeds, including pumpkin and sesame, making them a good source of protein, fiber, and healthy fats to keep you energized and satisfied. What’s more, sesame seeds are jam-packed with calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. The bites are sweetened with whole pitted dates that complement the nutty flavor of sesame and sunflower seeds perfectly.

2. Asian Black Rice Salad

Get ready to wow your guests at that summer picnic with the Asian Black Rice Salad. It’s bursting with color, flavor, and fun textures from the carrots, cabbage, and cashews. The addition of sesame seeds not only gives the Asian Black Rice Salad a finishing touch of color, but also adds calcium and phytonutrients, plus more fun crunch!

3. Turmeric Tahini Sauce

Turmeric Tahini Sauce is slightly nutty, very creamy, and packed with nutrition thanks to the tahini. The turmeric adds just a bit of earthiness along with anti-inflammatory compounds, and lemon adds some zest as well as vitamin C. This tahini recipe just might become your new favorite addition to drizzle on top of salads, grain bowls, and steamed veggies!

Sesame and Tahini Are Good for You!

Sesame seeds are a versatile food that offers considerable health benefits. While there are a few considerations when eating sesame seeds or sesame products, they’re safe and ultimately beneficial for most people. You can enjoy many types of sesame products as part of a wide variety of dishes and cuisines, in whole, paste, oil, or flour form. Sesame seeds can be a delicious and nutritious addition to a well-balanced diet.

New Study Shows Chemical Found in Green Leafy Vegetables Can Slow the Spread and Treat Illnesses Caused by COVID-19 and Other Common Cold Viruses

Jim Hoft
March 29, 2022

According to a study led by Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, a chemical that can be found in green leafy vegetables such as broccoli could slow the spread and treat illnesses caused by Covid-19 and other common cold viruses.

Researchers at John Hopkins Children’s Center discovered from their lab experiments on mice that “sulforaphane, a plant-derived chemical, known as a phytochemical, already found to have anti-cancer effects, can inhibit the replication of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and another human coronavirus in cells and mice.”

“While the results are promising, the researchers caution the public against rushing to buy sulforaphane supplements available online and in stores, noting that studies of sulforaphane in humans are necessary before the chemical is proven effective, and emphasizing the lack of regulation covering such supplements,” Hopkins Medicine stated.

Sulforaphane can be found in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, both red and white varieties, bok choy, watercress, arugula, also known as rocket.

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“When the COVID-19 pandemic started, our multidisciplinary research teams switched our investigations of other viruses and bacteria to focus on a potential treatment for what was then a challenging new virus for us,” according to Children’s Center microbiologist and senior author of the paper Lori Jones-Brando, Ph.D.

“I was screening multiple compounds for anti-coronavirus activity and decided to try sulforaphane since it has shown modest activity against other microbial agents that we study,” she added.

According to Alvaro Ordonez, M.D., the first author of the paper and an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, sulforaphane and remdesivir work better combined than alone is very encouraging.

“What we found is that sulforaphane is antiviral against HCoV-OC43 and SARS-CoV-2 coronaviruses while also helping control the immune response,” Ordonez said.

“This multifunctional activity makes it an interesting compound to use against these viral infections, as well as those caused by other human coronaviruses,” he added.

Read the summary of their finding below:

The ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has created the immediate need for effective therapeutics that can be rapidly translated to clinical use. Despite the introduction of vaccines, effective antiviral agents are still necessary, particularly considering the potential effects of viral variants. New oral antivirals targeting viral enzymes (e.g., molnupiravir and Paxlovid) have recently been approved or are in the process of review for emergency use approval by regulatory agencies, with many more currently under development.

However, this approach can be affected by the emergence of viral variants that change the affinity of the drug to the viral protein. An alternative approach is to target host mechanisms required by the virus to infect cells and replicate. Host-directed therapy is advantageous as it allows preexisting drugs to be repurposed, may provide broad-spectrum inhibition against multiple viruses, and is generally thought to be more refractory to viral escape mutations.

Following exploratory experiments using the in vitro CPE inhibition assay, SFN was identified as a promising candidate to target the host cellular response, given that it is orally bioavailable, commercially available at low cost, and has limited side effects. We observed that SFN has dual antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties against coronaviruses. We determined that SFN has potent antiviral activity against HCoV-OC43 and multiple strains of SARS-CoV-2, including Delta and Omicron, with limited toxicity in cell culture. The similar results observed between the coronaviruses evaluated suggest that SFN could have broad activity against coronaviruses, a feature that may prove invaluable as new strains of pathogenic coronaviruses enter the human population. Moreover, synergistic antiviral activity was observed in vitro between SFN and remdesivir against both types of coronaviruses tested; comparable synergism in vivo would be advantageous in clinical scenarios where remdesivir is currently being used. We demonstrated in vivo efficacy of prophylactic SFN treatment using the K18-hACE2 mouse model of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Prophylactic SFN-treatment in animals reduced viral replication in the lungs by 1.5 orders of magnitude, similar to that reported for remdesivir in the same mouse model. By comparison, BALB/c mice infected with mouse-adapted SARS-CoV-2 had a 1.4 log10 reduction in viral titers when treated with 300 mg/kg of nirmatrelvir 4 h after infection. As expected, SFN treatment also modulated the inflammatory response in SARS-CoV-2-infected mice, leading to decreased lung injury.

In summary, we documented that SFN can inhibit in vitro and in vivo replication of SARS-CoV-2 at pharmacologically and potentially therapeutically achievable concentrations. Further, it can modulate the inflammatory response, thereby decreasing the consequences of infection in mice when administered prior to infection. Given that SFN is orally bioavailable, commercially available, and has limited side effects, our results suggest it could be a promising approach for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 as well as other coronavirus infections. Further studies are needed to address these possibilities.

Read more here and below.

DHA, Light, Algae Oil & The Quantum Brain

What would be your reaction if you heard someone state that DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) is more important than DNA itself? 

This is exactly what Michael Crawford, the Director of the Institute of Brain Chemistry and Human Nutrition at Imperial College in London, states. 

Michael has won numerous awards and is a great example of a multi-disciplinarian with extensive knowledge in health, wellness, genetics, quantum biology, and more. 

He won the International Award for Modern Nutrition for work on unsaturated fatty acids in early human brain development and health, and in 2012 published a shockwave paper titled“A quantum theory for the irreplaceable role of docosahexaenoic acid in neural cell signaling throughout evolution.”

Most molecules in nature have changed over the course of a very long “time”, perhaps millions or billions of years to adapt its ability to function in the most energy-efficient and optimal way. 

Is DHA just as or more important than DNA itself? It is a question worth exploring.

The omega-3 fatty acid known as DHA is actually one of only a few that have been maintained because of its efficiency. 

Stated otherwise, DHA has remained unchanged because it has played its role so well and so efficiently within the brain, nervous system and eyes. 

Pulling directly from the Abstract in Crawford’s landmark paper, we find fascinating statements made: 

“While amino acids could be synthesized over 4 billion years ago, only oxidative metabolism allows for the synthesis of highly unsaturated fatty acids, thus producing novel lipid molecular species for specialized cell membranes. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) provided the core for the development of the photoreceptor, and conversion of photons into electricity stimulated the evolution of the nervous system and brain. 

Since then, DHA has been conserved as the principal acyl component of photoreceptor synaptic and neuronal signaling membranes in the cephalopods, fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals and humans. This extreme conservation in electrical signaling membranes despite great genomic change suggests it was DHA dictating to DNA rather than the generally accepted other way around. 

We offer a theoretical explanation based on the quantum mechanical properties of DHA for such extreme conservation. The unique molecular structure of DHA allows for quantum transfer and communication of ?-electrons, which explains the precise depolarisation of retinal membranes and the cohesive, organized neural signaling which characterizes higher intelligence.”

We will get to the juicy part of this compelling information a bit further down, but first, we need to understand the basics of what DHA is and what it does

DHA, Fish Oil and Algae Oil 

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid that is essential for brain health, heart health, eye health, a healthy inflammatory response and brain development during pregnancy and early childhood, and much more.

This long-chain omega-3 fatty acid needs to be consumed and it functions in cell membranes throughout the body to help transmit messages between the nervous system. 

DHA is also readily oxidized, so the body uses it and then needs a continual fresh supply to function optimally. 

DHA has been found to support many different facets of health.

Most people automatically equate Omega-3’s to fish oil, but did you know that it is the Algae that contains the DHA? The fish eat the algae, and are thus, an intermediary source. 

But the “fish in the middle” isn’t absolutely necessary.

We can go straight to the source and get nature’s true, pure and original DHA source

In nature, fish don’t make omega-3s. The organism that captures sunlight to create DHA is this golden algae. It is nature’s solar panel. More information on this quantum mechanical effect will be discussed below. 

However, this isn’t to say one should or shouldn’t stop consuming fish. As always, dietary decisions is each person’s right to choice

Consuming a couple servings of salmon per week will give some amounts of DHA and will be nutritionally-relevant, but won’t reach therapeutic intake levels, especially if a person is looking to support brain health and neurogenesis. 

1,000 mg to 2,000 mg of DHA per day over a period of 3 months has been shown to increase DHA levels and help people reach peak Omega-3 levels, which will be elaborated upon in more detail a bit further down.

As an example, an average serving of salmon (3 ounces) provides around 1,240 mg of DHA.

If someone wants to reach these therapeutic levels of DHA intake to support brain health and neurogenesis, this would mean a person would need at least 5.6 to 11.2 servings per week.

While there are certainly salmon and other seafood enthusiasts who will reach these levels, this isn’t a level of DHA most people in the general population reach .

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA), the USDA Dietary Guidelines (which by the way is often woefully misaligned in their suggestions for human nutrient consumption and health optimization), suggest adults should consume about 8 ounces per week, which would only give a little over 3,300 mg of DHA per week. 

As of 2019, which was NOAA’s latest update on these numbers, the average American is only reaching a little over 2,400 mg of DHA per week.

Additionally, there are various factors that determine how much DHA is actually in salmon or any other dietary source.

To get the real number for each particular serving, we’d ideally like to know where the fish was raised or caught, what their food source was to acquire the DHA (remember, the fish eat the algae to obtain the DHA), how much algae that fish consumed and how much DHA was present in the algae. There are also other possible environmental concerns to consider.

Thus, determining an accurate and reliable number of DHA quantity can prove to be challenging.

Stated again, we can view the average person’s consumption of DHA per week doesn’t reach therapeutic levels that ensure peak omega-3 levels in the brain and body are reached.

For most people, supplementing can be a more realistic way to reach these therapeutic levels and any additional dietary sources of DHA is an added bonus.

An analogy could be described as that of a bank account. To fill up the account, for most people it is easier to supplement and get known, exact quantities of DHA, whereas the additional dietary sources act as the interest gained by holding money in a bank account and these other sources are a bonus.

Brain Health, Voltage & Nervous System Development

DHA is used as a major building block in the growth of new neurons and has been shown to increase brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).

This is the protein that is part of a group of growth factors known as neurotrophins, which encourages survival and strengthening of existing neurons and also encourages the “growth and differentiation of new neurons and synapses.”

It is also sometimes called the “Master Omega” for maximizing mental and cognitive speed and efficiency. 

Going a bit further, we know that the human brain contains an astonishing 86 billion neurons and has an estimated 150 trillion synapses. These synapses are actually not connected, but are the spaces between neurons.

It is here where neurons send and receive electrical signals that convey information to each other and throughout the entire nervous system. 

In order for this lightning fast communication to take place, efficiency in energy transmission is paramount. 

The human brain contains an astonishing 86 billion neurons and has an estimated 150 trillion synapses.

But because energy can be in low supply due to the amount that neurons need to function, these same neurons must perform a delicate balancing act: they are tasked to produce as much energy as they can, but also at the same time build synaptic connections that branch out and conserve as much energy as they can. 

It has been estimated that the speed of neural signals in the human brain travel about 2 million times slower compared to electronic computers and that these computers are believed to be some 10 million times faster in terms of signals per second. 

However, the human brain overcomes this enormous difference by way of the number of neurons and the number of synaptic connections (recall that it is about 86 billion neurons and 150 trillion synaptics). 

Thus, we can view the human brain as a battery that has voltage–and it is DHA that is responsible for generating this voltage across cell membranes. 

As a brief explainer, voltage is “defined as an electropotential difference between two points” and in this case, it is the difference between the inside and outside of the lipid bilayer of a neuron.

The voltage across a neuron’s membrane is reported to be around .07 volts and if we divide that by the average thickness of a neuronal membrane (5 nanometers), it results in 14 million volts/meter. 

The equation looks like this: 

-(0.07 volts) / (5×10-9 meters) = 14,000,000 volts/meter

As shocking comparison, the voltage required to product lightning in a thunderstorm is only 3,000,000 volts/meter. 

This means that per meter, the voltage in the brain is nearly 5 times stronger than what is needed to create lightning! 

The voltage in the brain is something truly remarkable.

Stepping back into the bigger picture, it is DHA that takes photons from the Sun and transforms that energy into voltage that helps our brain, eyes and nervous system operate.

As stated earlier, it is believed that DHA has remained selected by Nature to help maximize the speed of communication between neurons. 

If we didn’t have DHA in our brain and nervous system, it would be much more difficult for us to compute the sensory inputs we receive through the entire nervous system. 

In their book Neurons and the DHA Principle, authors Raymond and David Valentine describe a very interesting property of DHA as well.

“Because DHA tails are in perpetual motion, these chains do not stand still long enough to bind with their neighbors to form hardened oils typical of butter or lard. Thus, the contortions of DHA chains keep the membrane surface in constant motion even in the extreme cold. 

DHA is responsible for this extreme motion because it keeps itself, neighboring chains, and other membrane components in a perpetual state of movement (e.g., spinning and lateral movement)… 

Neurons and sensory cells harness the motion in DHA tails to boost the speed of their signals.  Hence, DHA becomes a pacemaker of brain speed and without it our sensory system would likely be much slower.”

Similar to that of a gyroscope, DHA acts in a way to maintain continual movement of energy and electricity throughout the brain and nervous system. 

Thus, DHA is needed for brain development and is responsible for 97% of the omega-3 fatty acids found in the brain and is 25% of the brain’s total poly-unsaturated fat content.

In the first 6 months of human life, DHA is necessary and particularly important for the development of the nervous system and brain for a child

The USA has one of the lowest levels in the world in relation to DHA found in breast milk, suggesting mother’s need DHA supplementation before, during and after pregnancy.  A minimum of 600 mg DHA daily has been re-recommended and even more than that has been found to be better. 

In fact, DHA is included in Australia’s public health policy for pregnant mothers.

Synaptamide and Neurogenesis 

Another riveting aspect of DHA is how it relates to something called Synaptamide

This compound is rapidly growing in interest within the biohacking and neurohacking fields and is the topic of exciting scientific research. 

Synaptamide (N-Docosahexaenoylethanolamine) is an endocannabinoid and anandamide-like metabolite that is created from DHA. In the brain, there exists a tightly linked relationship between the levels of synaptamide and its precursor, DHA.

At nanomolar concentration, synaptamide promotes neurogenesis, neurite outgrowth and synaptogenesis in developing neurons.

Synaptamide promotes neurite outgrowth, synaptogenesis and neurogenesis.The graphic above shows different stages of neurogenesis and how stress, running, learning and enrichment play various roles in the proliferation, differentiation and survival stages of neuronal growth and development. 


Because Synaptamide is produced from DHA, the intake of DHA becomes the rate-determining factor of Synaptamide production. 

If adequate levels of DHA is consumed, adequate amounts of synaptamide can be produced.

Look for this specific compound to continue growing in interest and research.

Genes, Telomeres and Fertility

In the nervous system DHA supports gene expression, which means that genes are influenced by DHA.

One very interesting aspect of this is that DHA binds to the nuclear peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR-?) ligand, which targets genes related to healthy insulin secretion, healthy blood sugar levels and fatty acid metabolism.

The topic of the various PPARs goes deep and is something I’ve spent a lot of time researching. Because it is such a lengthy topic, I won’t spend more time on it here, but researchers may wish to look into these special receptors further. 

Furthermore, as DHA relates to genes and healthy gene expression, telomeres are also a topic that has gained enormous popularity within the biohacking and wellness fields because DHA supports the size of telomeres. Telomeres are sections of DNA that are located at the ends of chromosomes.

Telomeres are the tips of chromosomes and are made of DNA.

In general, the job of telomeres is to protect the longevity of the genetic information in the chromosome, but it is well known that a variety of dietary and lifestyle factors causes the shortening of these telomeres.

Not surprisingly though, DHA has been shown to support the length and longevity of these telomeres.

This field of study is called nutritional genomics, which encompasses nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics and “studies the interaction-mechanisms of nutrients with DNA in human health. In this regard, nutrigenetics studies the effects of genetic variations on the nutritional response, while nutrigenomics investigates how nutrients and bioactive food compounds affect gene functions via epigenetic modifications.”

DHA, Eye Health, Light and the Pineal Gland

While reading a book for an hour, the eyes make an average of over 10,000 coordination movements while the average person blinks up to 15,000 times per day.

In order to do this, there are certain structural components in the eyes that are needed to make this happen. 

DHA happens to be among the most important. 

Keep in mind though that the eyes can only perceive 0.0035 % of the entire electromagnetic spectrum. We perceive this 0.0035% as the colors of the rainbow and the varying shades in between. This portion of the spectrum is what we see as we go about our day.

The retina of the eye contains an astonishing 91 million rods and about 4.5 million cones, all of which have DHA-loaded membranes that act as photoreceptors and capture the visible spectrum of light.

These photoreceptors in the eye convert the energy from photons (waves of light) from the Sun into electricity, which then is relayed throughout the nervous system. 

Rods and cones line the inside of the retina and are photoreceptive to light.

Photons from the sun hit the retina and are converted to an electrical signal that the brain can then translate. DHA is vital to this process and as discussed above, is the reason we are even able to read and interpret these words right now.

Relating to our two outward-facing eyes is that of the pineal gland, sometimes referred to as the “3rd eye” or “Seat of the Soul.” 

Neurons within the pineal gland are also loaded with DHA and it has been shown that changes in DHA levels correlate nicely with the healthy function of the pineal gland and proper melatonin production.

Supports Cardiovascular Health

The liver controls and recycles triglycerides and cholesterol. The liver is manufacturing and distributing triglycerides and cholesterol for a reason, which is to support your natural, overall health. 

High-density lipoproteins (HDL) are a class of lipoproteins that carry fatty acids and cholesterol from the body’s tissues to the liver. Typically, about 30% of blood cholesterol is carried by HDL.  

It’s well known that HDL shuttles cholesterol away from tissues and arteries, back to the liver. That is why HDL is called the “good cholesterol,” because it is taking cholesterol away from your arteries.

For cardiovascular and cholesterol health support, omega-3 DHA and EPA act in three critical ways.

As fundamental natural components dictating LDL cholesterol size, omega-3 DHA and EPA side chains are integrated at the molecular level, acting directly where triglyceride particles are made. 

Second, as signaling molecules, they support a healthy inflammatory response in the cardiovascular system. 

Third, as a main component of heart and liver tissues, DHA supports optimal tissue function. 

In addition to supporting healthy cholesterol levels, DHA and EPA have been shown to support the function of endothelial cells and arteries, which helps support healthy blood pressure. 

Mitochondria, ATP and Cardiolipin

DHA accretion is the process of building up stores or reserves of higher DHA levels over time, yet accretion is naturally limited to an average ideal level of about 8% total omega-3 membrane composition, which means that it poses no risk of overdose or side effects

Most people persist at about 4% total omega-3 membrane levels and have very little DHA in their mitochondrial cardiolipin. Mitochondria are most abundant in heart muscle and neurons. This 4% means most people are operating at about half of their capacity for DHA reserves.

This means most people can benefit from DHA accretion (building up to the proper levels of DHA in the body). 

The summary of 16 human clinical studies using algae DHA proves tissue accretion therapy is effective and supports longevity. By using an average 1000mg to 2000mg DHA per day, a person will double total omega-3s in their red blood cells in 90 days and in all cells within 12 months.

Additional studies with similar intake levels support DHA accretion in mitochondrial cardiolipin within the same time periods. Several of these studies will be listed in the Reference section. 

This is where mitochondrial cardiolipin comes into play. Cardiolipin is a lipid complex that can  be created only from certain fatty acids. Cardiolipin is unique in that it is a novel phospholipid made only in the mitochondria. 

As we know, the mitochondria are the quantum power factories for our body and cells and is where energy generation occurs. 

Cardiolipin functions as a proton trap, which gives ATP synthase the voltage needed to enhance electron transfer and reduce electron leakage. 

DHA omega-3 literally helps maintain mitochondrial structure and function

Cellular uptake of DHA and EPA  leads to deposition into the cell plasma membranes, but only DHA is further deposited into the mitochondrial structure as cardiolipin incorporated with DHA. 

This only happens with sufficient DHA intake levels over time, though. The cardiolipin DHA then functions in energy production and organelle integrity.

This again means regular consumption of DHA is important for supporting mitochondrial health. 

Cardiolipin also plays a role that is essential for the particular shape of mitochondrial cristae

As ScienceDirect notes, “Mitochondrial cristae are dynamic bioenergetic compartments whose shape changes under different physiological conditions and has emerged as potential modulators of mitochondrial bioenergetics…’

DHA is the only omega-3 that can be used to make this novel lipid known as cardiolipin, but only when DHA is consistently available in the diet at high enough levels. DHA also has electroconductive properties, which has many uses in the brain, nervous system, eyes and cardiovascular system. 

Because the heart is an organ that gives off a strong electromagnetic field, ensuring the heart is well nourished in this electroconductive DHA is of utmost importance. DHA accretion using Algae Oil DHA will certainly be of great interest to many people reading this.

DHA, DNA and Quantum Tunneling

It is well established today that higher levels of DHA circulating in blood plasma supports healthy DNA and RNA function. 

What is more interesting though is the exact relationship between DHA and DNA

This brings us back to the work of neuroscientist and world-renowned expert on DHA, Michael Crawford.

Crawford’s paper, “A quantum theory for the irreplaceable role of docosahexaenoic acid in neural cell signaling throughout evolution” puts forth the statement that it is DHA that has actually been giving the orders for DNA’s functions over the past 600 million plus years

Given that DNA makes the proteins that make the many specialized cells that make up reptiles, birds, all mammals and humans, it is a massive statement to make. 

In Crawford’s paper, he explains, “…over 600 million years animal genomes underwent countless mutations with enormous variation in protein composition and structures. We suggest that DHA…[is] the master of DNA since the beginning of animal evolution. Proteins are selected to function with the constancy of DHA: it was the ‘‘selfish DHA’’ not DNA that ruled the evolution of vision and the brain.” 

Stated otherwise, once DHA arrived at the scene hundreds of millions years ago or more, the molecule proved so incredibly efficient and beneficial that it has run the show from that point forward and remained unchanged for millions of years as all proteins around it also evolved efficiently to better fit its needs.

This leads to the elephant in the room: What makes DHA so unique and special?

The work of Crawford states that DHA is “nothing less than a natural semiconductor, with a unique ability to accurately and coherently transmit signals via quantum mechanical processes. That’s why it is concentrated in the eyes and brain. Each is essentially a signal processor. For the eyes, the signal is more or less direct. For the brain, it is modulated, as a semiconductor modulates an electrical signal to compute and store memory.” Source

What this directly means is that as you process this information you’re reading or listening to right now, DHA is literally the primary framework that supports the processing, understanding and remembering of the information, i.e. neurogenesis.

Crawford points out specifically something that should be noted closely, “the unique molecular structure of DHA allows for quantum transfer and communication of p-electrons, which explains the precise depolarisation of retinal membranes and the cohesive, organized neural signaling which characterizes higher intelligence.”

This also involves a process that should be very specially stated, which is that of quantum tunneling. 

Quantum tunneling “is the process through which a particle passes through an energy barrier despite lacking the energy required to overcome the barrier, as would be defined by classical physics.

Quantum tunneling breaks the conventional laws of physics.

In other words, quantum tunneling breaks the “conventional” laws of physics. 

This is where quantum biology comes into focus, as all biological systems at their fundamental levels are made of atoms

Stated otherwise, DHA is facilitating quantum processes that are vital for the existence of life itself. 

In the upcoming book version of The Neurogenesis Protocol, I’ll be discussing this information even more in-depth and sharing things of interest as it relates to light, biophotons, quantum tunneling, DHA, electrons and more. Stay tuned.

Unique Algae Oil DHA

In my quest to stimulate neurogenesis, optimize quantum processes happening in my brain and eyes and boost mitochondrial function, finding the best version of a DHA supplement became the most important task to me.  

After extensive personal experimentation, countless hours of medical paper reading and inquisitive conversations with lipid biochemists, my company Ascent Nutrition now proudly offers a truly rare, unique DHA product whose quality speaks for itself

Ascent Nutrition’s Algae Oil DHA uses a wild-type strain of algae that is uniquely water extracted to produce the cleanest, purest DHA in the world.

Unlike fish oil, this specific golden algae oil is balanced to match human biology for the DHA to EPA ratio, because again, DHA is 10 times more abundant than any other omega-3 in the human body. 

The brain’s Omega-3 needs are 97% DHA and only 3% EPA, which closely matches our superior strain. Many fish oil products have an upside down ratio because it has way more EPA than DHA, which is not how the body is made. 

Once again, DHA can easily retroconvert to EPA in just the right amounts as the body needs it and when the body needs it. DHA really is what we need.

Our Algae Oil DHA can be considered safer than fish and fish oil for both pregnant and nursing mothers, as well as for purity and direct delivery of the right DHA levels for pregnant women. After all, accretion of DHA at an early stage is critical for neurodevelopment.

Be reassured that natural omega-3 DHA-rich oil like Ascent Nutrition’s Algae Oil DHA gives all the DHA needed for the body to harness these secrets-to-life lipids for health benefits in the body and brain. 

Additionally and most importantly, algae oil is backed by at least 16 different human clinical studies and is shown to build up DHA levels in the human body. (See references below my bio at the end of this article.)

In order to build up one’s levels of DHA in the body, the science shows that 1,000-2,000 mg of algae DHA per day over a period of 3-6 months can do just this and will also help support the brain, nervous system and the process of neurogenesis.

I am publicly announcing The Neurogenesis Regimen and only Ascent Nutrition’s Algae Oil DHA supports the science behind The Neurogenesis Regimen.

The Neurogenesis Regimen supports peak Omega-3 levels, synaptamide production and neurogenesis at 1,000-2,000mg of algae DHA per day over a period of 3 months. 

In other words, if you want to build up your DHA quantity to peak levels, support synaptamide production and neurogenesis, consuming 1,000-2,000 mg of Algae Oil DHA over a period of 3 months can help.

3 months of 1,000-2,000 mg of DHA per day equates to 3-6 bottles.

It is better to have a long-term goal of 3 months to 12 months to double the total body and brain DHA levels

Got Food Oil Poisoning? Physician, Author and Researcher Dr. Chris A. Knobbe Verifies Processed Oils Are at the Core of Nearly All Disease

Have you heard of food oil poisoning? It can wreck entire body systems and exacerbate any and all health issues you already have. It’s not like food poisoning where you get violently sick within 24 hours and vomit repeatedly. It’s a long-term health catastrophe, and it’s embedded in the food supply, and that’s why about 200 million Americans are suffering from chronic disease right now. Which oils and what are the signs? Let the food oil scholar explain it in great detail, then you can remedy your own situation, or pass this valuable knowledge along to your family, friends, relatives, neighbors, and coworkers. Dr. Chris Knobbe presented these shocking revelations at the 2021 Ancestral Health Symposium, entitled the “Omega-6 Apocalypse.”

Nearly all “Westernized” diseases come down to vegetable oils

You may have thought gluten, animal fat, and sugar were the human body’s worst enemies when it comes to food that causes long-term health decimation, but vegetable seed oils take the cake. Food oils may be the main culprit, in other words, for obesity, cancers, metabolic syndrome, malnutrition, diabetes, heart disease, strokes and dementia.

Dr. Knobbe walks us through 200 years of medical history with his in-depth research, and what we see is that the USA leads the way in weight gain, more than 25 percent above the global average. We continue to replace animal fats with vegetable oils, so it’s not really about the whole “cut your carbs” (carbohydrates) movement that was so popular for so long.

The entire diabetes epidemic (it should be termed) has been created in this country, mainly, over the past 85 years. Obesity was only a one percent factor a century ago; now every third American is overweight, and half of them are obese (about 30 or more pounds overweight).

In 1960 obesity affected only 13 percent of the American populace, now it’s 40 percent, and that’s four out of every ten people you see in the stores and restaurants are obese, buying and consuming processed food oils nearly every meal, every day. They’re toxic food addicts, and their health problems only get worse for them every year.

Shocker: Processed vegetable oils account for a sickening third of all food consumed by Americans

“Plant oils” have been a marketing scam, the doctor says, to make the oils sound healthy for you, but the health trade off for any nutrition is a whole rack of chronic problems, as he points out. Canola isn’t even a plant, but comes from a toxic, non-edible insecticide known as rapeseed oil. Over 90 percent of processed oils contain GMOs, furthering the health detriment of consumers who now also have pesticides destroying their good gut flora.

The worst of the vast array of toxic oils are the PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid oils), including canola (rapeseed diluted), corn, cottonseed, rice bran, sunflower, safflower, grapeseed, and of course, soybean. As of late, there has been a massive increase of seed oil consumption in the USA.

Bottom line: Eliminate the seed oils from your diet and you eliminate multiple health issues you have now, are developing, or would otherwise develop in the not-so-distant future. Currently, 86 percent of added fats in foods are vegetable oils. Let that sink in for a minute (pardon the pun).