Effects of Coffee

Categories // Nutrition

Many people have heard of the antioxidant benefits of coffee, but there are drawbacks to coffee as well including:

1) Coffee's acidic nature can reduce a person's Vitamin C and mineral reserves.

2) Coffee's stimulating nature can:
-encourage cortisol dysregulation
-develop a function debt where your body becomes addicted
-prevent your body from properly relaxing

What is not widely shared is the negative effect of the caffeine in all coffee (decaf, too still has some caffeine in it) as a stimulant that leads to blood sugar imbalances.When a cup of caffeinated beverage is ingested, the adrenal glands are stimulated to release stress hormones, like cortisol. This has the effect of throwing off the blood sugar leading to both a hypoglycemic state before a meal and a slight insulin-resistance after a meal. This means you may be cranky with others or light-headed when you're hungry and rather than burning the glucose, you are more likely to store it as fat after a meal.

Even small amounts of regular caffeine can establish a "function debt" in the body meaning that your body becomes reliant on the stimulant rather than functioning on its own to help you feel enlivened.

Furthermore, caffeinated beverages give your body the signal that it should be "up" rather than relaxed. Overtime, your body produces fewer relaxing hormones as a result.

For healthy alternatives to coffee, consider the following suggestions:
1) Have a different hot drink such as star's lemonade and other hot beverages listed in our recipe section. Try Herbal coffees such as the one we carry by Mountain Rose.

2) Eat a healthy diet dense in fish, meat, fresh produce and healthy fats so that you do not need to rely on stimulants.

3) Try herbal blends for the glandular systems such as Adaptocrine that we carry in the office.



Boosting Your Immune System Through Food

Categories // Nutrition



The winter season can be a time of rest and reflection. But with this cold season comes holidays, poor diet, friends and family and stress, which can often lead to illness. Food and nutrition are the foundation for health and a good immune system. It is important to boost your system with foods high in bioflavonoids, Vitamin C, zinc and probiotics. Eating a wide variety of color in your diet is a simple way to make sure you are getting a broad range of nutrients. Also, eating simply with plenty of liquids will support you this season.

Make sure you are getting probiotics daily either through a supplement or cultured vegetables, such as raw kimchi and sauerkraut. A strong immune system relies on a well balanced gut. Your gut houses 90% of your immune system!

Your momma didn’t lie: Chicken soup is very healing when you are sick, especially when you make your broth from the bones. Chicken is also a great source of selenium and zinc. A deficiency of zinc can leave your body more susceptible to infections. Mushrooms and green vegetables are good additions to your soup. Mushrooms are rich in selenium, required for immune function. Shiitake mushrooms have been used for centuries by the Chinese and Japanese to treat colds and flu. They appear to stimulate the immune system, help fight infection and increase anti-tumor activity. Eat a variety of non-starchy vegetables, especially greens! Greens are full of phytonutients, protective elements that fight harmful toxins, bacteria and viruses. Dark leafy greens are a great source of chlorophyll, calcium and iron. If you are feeling unwell, make sure you are getting high amounts of Vitamin C from broccoli, cabbage, bell peppers, sprouts, parsley and citrus fruits.

Spices and herbs not only make food delicious, but also give your immune system a big boost. Just sprinkling a little cayenne or eating a half clove of garlic a day can make a big difference in the severity and duration of a cold or flu. Garlic and onions are versatile and a great remedy for the common cold. The compounds allicin and allium in garlic help to ward off germs. Oregano is also very effective in killing harmful pathogens. Cayenne and other hot peppers not only help clear out a stuffy nose but are also high in vitamin C.

Sipping on hot tea is a great way to clear out any congestion. It is also very soothing and comforting for a sore throat. Ginger, chamomile, peppermint, nettle or fresh lemon juice are all great choices. Sage, slippery elm and marshmallow root are especially helpful in relieving a painful throat.

Rest and movement are equally important in keeping you well this winter. Allow yourself more sleep and take naps if necessary. Sleep is an excellent healer.  Move your body through yoga or go for a brisk walk outside in the crisp air. Avoid all inflammatory and mucous producing foods if you find your self starting to get sick; this includes processed carbohydrates, dairy, red meat, soy, gluten and all forms of sugar. Overeating sugar weakens your immune system by decreasing your white blood cell activity. Try to aim for a diet that is rich in non-starchy vegetables, fruit, whole grains, legumes and moderate amounts of animal protein to keep you feeling healthy throughout the year.



Flu Prevention

Categories // Nutrition

The food and drink you consume, regular exercise, and awareness practices are the most important activities you can do for building your immunity and preventing viral infections and colds, including H1N1.  It is important to be mindful of your choices everyday to prevent the chronic conditions that place you at a higher risk for complications from a virus like H1N1. Here are some holistic, food-based tips to help you stay healthy:

-Vitamin D. Eat foods high in Vitamin D and get plenty of sun. As a hormone in your body, Vitamin D attacks the proteins of the virus.  Foods such as wild salmon, mackerel, and herring are the highest in Vit D. Soy (I only suggest it in the form of tempeh) and eggs (have with hot sauce or chilies to prevent congesting the liver/gall-bladder) are also high in Vitamin D.

- Oregano. Cook with oregano or use essential oregano oil in your cooking. No pathogen ever tested against oregano oil has survived.

-Garlic. Cut up raw garlic and include in your food daily. High in zinc and enzymes, garlic will kill pathogens.

-No sugar, not any. Do not eat sugar.  Even in the form of dried fruits, raw honey, and maple syrup. Sugar will feed an infection. The safest sugar we know of today is green stevia. The amount sugar equivalent to a soda will reduce your immunity 40% within 30 minutes of ingesting. Breads and pastas, especially in the refined form, easily break down to sugars in your system and feed infections.

-Sleep! Get plenty of sleep; 8 hours or more. Studies tell us that when you get less than 7 hours per night you are 40% more likely to develop a cold.

-Zinc. Eat foods high in Zinc: all raw foods have zinc. Roasted pumpkin seeds are especially high. Eat a little everyday.

-Vitamin C. Eat foods high in Vitamin C: such as raw sauerkraut, berries, and sprouts.

-Probiotics. Eat foods high in probiotics and enzymes such as fermented foods like raw sauerkraut, kimchee, and kombucha.

-Polysaccharides. Polysaccharides help repair and keep the gut wall healthy so that you fight pathogens and assimilation your food. Seaweeds (try strips in your soup!), aloe (drink int he form of gel), and mushrooms (shitaki, reishi, many others) are some of the foods with highest levels of polysaccharides.

-Antioxidants. Eat antioxidant-rich foods. You don't have to eat expensive foods like acai and blueberries all the time to get the antioxidants you need. Whole foods like brown rice and black beans are 99% higher than all other foods in antioxidants.  Eat legumes and whole grains (about 20% of your daily foods) daily for good nutrition.

-Follow simple proper food combining to prevent digestive issues that lead to poor immunity. Eat your fruits separately and do not combine animal proteins with starchy foods.



Categories // Nutrition

Dehydration is the one of the oldest and simplest methods for preserving the bounty of fresh and local foods this summer. Food dehydrators use heat and circulating air to remove moisture from the food to stop bacteria, yeast and mold from growing. Dehydrating slows, but does not stop, enzymatic action thereby making it one of the healthiest forms of food preservation because the food product is still raw.

Fruit leathers are an easy and healthy treat. First puree the fruit and spread it about ¼” thick on plastic wrap or teflex sheets that come with a dehydrator. Dehydrate for about 6-8 hours depending on the fruit. You may roll it in wax paper for storage, or tear in serving size pieces. Don’t be afraid to mix and match; creating different recipes is half the fun.


Ways Your Body Tells You What It Needs

Categories // Nutrition



In a recent training offered through the Loomis Enzyme Institute in Madison, WI, I learned to evaluate enzyme deficiencies. The first step in an evaluation is to ascertain if there is a deficiency in protein, carbohydrate, or fat.  A deficiency could develop if someone is not eating enough of the food, or if they have an inability to digest it. In some cases, a deficiency could arise if you are eating too much of a food and not digesting it well. Sometimes the diet is not the original stress that brought about a deficiency, a structural problem or a traumatic or stressful event could be the driver behind the dietary deficiency.


Some general signs that indicate a need for a dietary change or enzyme supplementation include:

stiff, achey joints

bloating and gas pain

restlessness or irritability

digestive distress, and many others...


Signs of protein issues include:

muscle or mentrual cramps

cold hands and feet

irritated or bleeding gums

loss of appetite for meat

sour taste in mouth

issues with Calcium

and many others


Signs of carbohydrate issues include:

fatigue (most commonly from too much sugar)

potassium deficiency (generally from too much sugar)

easily startled

inability to focus

and many others


Signs of fat issues include:

problems with fertility, pregnancy or labor

tightness in the shoulders

slow to start in the morning

circulatory and heart issues

lightheadedness when changing positions


In many cases, we at Human Nature, can identify and/or quantify a deficiency in an office visit, and then help guide you towards food choice and preparation techniques that will bring greater balance to your life.

[12 3 4 5  >>  

Office Hours

Office hours are by appointment only. We generally respond to requests Monday through Friday and take appointments on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Please call ahead to pre-order supplements.

Make an Appointment