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Sanjay Gupta ‘doubling down’ on medical marijuana

Worlds most popular neurosurgeon doubles down on the positive effects of medicinal marijuana.

Erin Burnett OutFront -

Editor’s note: Don’t miss “Weed 2: Cannabis Madness: Dr. Sanjay Gupta Reports,” at 10 p.m. ET on Tuesday.

(CNN) — It’s been eight months since I last wrote about medical marijuana, apologizing for having not dug deeply into the beneficial effects of this plant and for writing articles dismissing its potential. I apologized for my own role in previously misleading people, and I feel very badly that people have suffered for too long, unable to obtain the legitimate medicine that may have helped them.

I have been reminded that a true and productive scientific journey involves a willingness to let go of established notions and get at the truth, even if it is uncomfortable and even it means having to say “sorry.”

It is not easy to apologize and take your lumps, but this was never about me.

This scientific journey is about a growing number of patients who…

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Broccoli Sprouts


Broccoli Sprouts

Broccoli is the member of cruciferous plant that also includes cabbages and cauliflower. Broccoli seeds have to be moistened and left in the dark for few days to allow them to grow. They can be stored in cool and dry place up to five years for sprouting later. Broccoli sprouts are actually three- to four day- old tiny broccoli plants that contain potent nutrients. The nutritional content in broccoli sprouts can vary, depending on the nutrient content in the growing environment.

Though broccoli sprouts have currently found their popularity in the United States, they actually have a thousand-year-old history. Health conscious people have embraced raw broccoli sprouts as a dietary staple for many years. In 1992, scientists at Johns Hopkins University found glucoraphanin in broccoli, which is the glucosinolate precursor of sulforaphane that is a cancer-fighting phytochemical. In 1997, another researcher discovered that three- to four-day-old broccoli sprouts have at least twenty times more glucoraphanin concentration than full-grown broccoli.

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Bloomberg School of Public Health observed that broccoli sprouts can help the body detoxify carcinogens and that broccoli sprouts can help to eliminate cancer-causing toxins. The sulforaphane component in broccoli sprouts also inhibits the growth of cancer cells and helps the liver to detoxify the carcinogens from the body. Research held at Ulster University also showed that regular consumption of broccoli sprouts protects DNA from damage and lowers the risk of cancer.

The following lists different ways that broccoli sprouts have demonstrated promising results in treating different cancers and other ailments:

• Breast cancer: Studies at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center have shown that broccoli sprouts may inhibit cancerous stem cells and may shrink the existing tumor.1

• Bladder cancer: An extract from broccoli sprouts contains high dose of isothiocyanate, in particular sulforaphane, and has shown to prevent bladder cancer. Being a rich source of several isothiocyanate, broccoli sprouts lower the risk of developing bladder cancer.2

• Prostate cancer: Regular consumption of broccoli sprouts may help to reduce the risk of prostate cancer because it contains sulforaphane, which may prevent prostate cancer by activating some genes that can fight against this cancer.3

• Cardiovascular benefits: By normalizing blood pressure levels, broccoli sprouts help to reduce cardiovascular disease risk. A study has shown that regular eating of broccoli sprouts decreases triglyceride levels and significantly elevates levels of HDL, especially in type 2 diabetes patients.4

• Arthritis: Some active compounds in broccoli sprouts may help to prevent the most common form of arthritis. A study reports that sulforaphane inhibits certain enzymes responsible for the destruction of cartilage both in vitro and in vivo.5

1. Li, Yanyan, Zhang, Tao. “Sulforaphane, a Dietary Component of Broccoli/Broccoli Sprouts, Inhibits Breast Cancer Stem Cells.” Clinical Cancer Research, Vol.16, No9; May1, 2010

2. Abbaoui Besma, Riedi, Kenneth et al. “Inhibition of Bladder Cancer by Broccoli Isothiocyanates Sulforaphane and Erucin: Characterization, Metabolism, and Interconversion”. Molecular Nutrition Food Research. 2012 Nov; 56(11):1675-1687.)

3. Zhang Chengyue, Su, Zheng-Yuan et al. “Sulforaphane Enhances Nrf2 Expression in Prostate Cancer TRAMP C1 Cells Through Epigenetic Regulation.” Biochemical Pharmacology Pharmacology. 2013 May 1;85(9):1398-1404.

4. Bahadoran Zahra, Mirmiran Parvin. “Broccoli Sprouts Powder Could Improve Serum Triglyceride and Oxidized LDL/LDLcholesterol Ratio in Type 2 Diabetic Patients: a Randomized Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial.” Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. 2012 Jun;96(3):348-354

5. Davidson Rose, Jupp Orla et al. “Sulforaphane Represses Matrix-Degrading Proteases and Protects Cartilage from Destruction in Vitro and in Vivo”. Arthritis Rheumatism. 2013 Aug 27.

Excerpt from “Dr Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier” by Dr. Matt Ferenc

Signed copy soft cover available at www.drmattsplan.com

The information from Dr Matt’s Plan is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge.

Industrialized Nutrition Calls for Probiotics Part I


             In the last one hundred years, there have been vast changes to our food supply. Small farms have grown into large industries, plants have been genetically modified into Frankenfood, chemicals have been introduced into food to offset its lack of nutrients and grains have been stripped of their nutrients and goodness to form overly processed snacks ingested daily by our children.  This industrialization is causing drastic consequences on our health and wellness.

Small farms that housed a few different animals and lived off large pastures became concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). These CAFOs now enclosed animals into small quarters that require the use of tremendous amounts of antibiotics for the prevention of disease. It has been shown that almost 30 million pounds of antibiotics were sold for meat and poultry production while only 7.7 million pounds were sold to treat people in 2011 alone. These antibiotics not only end up in the meat of the animals but also end up in the water supply and the rest of the environment.

Antibiotics are very powerful medications that not only destroy the bad bacteria known to cause disease, but they also destroy the good bacteria which is necessary for proper health. Even small amounts ingested from the foods we eat or milk we drink, can cause severe damage to normal intestinal flora and harbor the growth of dangerous and drug resistant bacteria such as C-difficile.

Our intestinal flora (beneficial bacteria) is very important in stabilizing and protecting the mucous lining of the intestines. A compromised mucous layer can lead to a host of serious problems. Potentially dangerous bacteria can invade the intestinal surface causing serious infections and bleeding; toxins in food can cause damage to the surface intestinal cells and lead to mutations responsible for cancers; gas forming bacteria flourish uncontrollably leading to symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome; allergens in food come into contact the intestinal cells and cause atopic dermatitis, a form of eczema. Maintaining healthy intestinal flora may prevent many of these disorders and disease processes.

As long as we keep eating food supplied by large industries, we will always be bombarded by large amounts of antibiotics. Our intestines will always have the lower hand in the battle of maintaining a proper barrier. It is here that a well studied probiotic such as the Lactobacillus plantarum299v can help. By ingesting a daily serving of this beneficial bacteria, the intestinal lining is protected by a healthy mucous layer. Food allergens have less time to cause allergic responses, toxins tend to be excreted without coming into contact with fragile intestinal cells, and dangerous bacteria are ultimately destroyed secondary to potent byproducts created by the lactobacillus.

The integrity of the mucosal layer should be kept at 100% all the time by supplying it with fresh beneficial bacteria daily. Choosing a potent, dairy free, vegan probiotic should be of the upmost importance when deciding which to ingest. It should also be maintained on a daily basis in order to get the best results and protection.


By Dr. Matt Ferenc


The information from Dr Matt Ferenc is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge.

Back to Basics



Back to Basics


            It’s been 2 days since my ½ marathon. I broke my personal record (PR) and felt proud of all my hard work and endless days of running. When I look in the mirror and at the scale, I do not feel so proud. My weight has drifted up from a low of 196 to a weight of 219, and the mirror definitely reflects the same. I too can sometimes stray from the fundamentals of Dr. Matt’s Plan. I was letting a couple of the C words (these C words are explained in my book) into my body, especially at work. Over the holidays I was drinking way too much alcohol causing chronic inflammation and mental fogginess, and not doing enough hot yoga and resistance training. My interval training paid off with a better ½ marathon time but sure didn’t help with fat loss.

            I woke up on Tuesday after a late shift in the ER and decided to get back to basics. I had my coffee, ate a raw vegan gluten free granola bar, drank 10 ounces of water and swallowed my mix of vitamins and nutrients. I made a sign with the date, my weight and body fat percentage and asked my wife to take a few pictures of me in my underwear. It was time I took Dr. Matt’s Plan seriously again and show everyone what it is capable of doing for your health and to your body.

            My wife and I decided hot yoga with Paige Held at The Yoga Joint would probably be most beneficial after our race since we are still sore. We needed to get rid of the lactic acid stuck in our muscle fibers, stretch our tendons and ligaments, detoxify our lymphatic system, liver and spleen. We filled our hydro-flasks with ice-cold water and talked Dr. Matt’s Plan on the way to The Yoga Joint.

            First rule, we decided to cut alcohol intake drastically, maybe to 1-2 days a week. Alcohol, even though in moderation is beneficial to ones health, also has many calories that do add up to thousands of calories per week. In fat-loss or weight-loss mode, these calories act as a roadblock. Second rule, stay away from the six “C” foods. These foods are empty calories and nutrient poor. We need nutrient dense foods that are organic and full of natural vitamins and minerals.  Rule three, plan for a plant based diet daily. No meat, poultry, or pork. On occasion, we still integrate local caught tropical Atlantic fish for the kids. I do think the highly processed vegan or vegetarian food is still junk food and probably no better than land animal meat. Local caught, sustainable fish tend to provide dense nutrients and oils that processed vegan dishes do not. Final rule, our ½ marathon training has ended for the season and we will focus on intense interval training, resistance training and plenty of hot yoga and rest.

            I will publish here weekly results and at the publish date of Dr. Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier I will publish before and after pictures. I will share great recipes and pictures of our special meals we create that are usually vegan, nutrient dense and gluten free. Have a wonderful day.

“Dr Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier” by Dr. Matt Ferenc

Soft cover available at www.drmattsplan.com

The information from Dr Matt’s Plan is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge.


Sugar Substitutes Part II



Sugar Substitutes Part II

Corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), and high maltose corn syrup (HMCS) are sweeteners made from maize or corn. These sweeteners have an interesting history in the United States and are the biggest culprit of obesity. In the 1970s, the US government instituted large tariffs that prevented sugar from being imported cheaply. Corn syrup and its sweeter cousin HFCS were in abundant supply from corn. The US government did and still subsidizes corn. As a result, because HFCS was sweeter than corn syrup, food companies started incorporating it into many different foods and drinks with its production and consumption peaking in 1999.

HFCS posed two health concerns. The first, which seems to have been rectified in 2009, was the finding of mercury in samples from a wide variety of chemical plants that produced it. These plants have been shut down since then. Mercury is a neurotoxin, and even small amounts can cause severe damage to a developing brain and nervous system. Two decades of mercury poisoning can explain the spike in autism, ADD, ADHD, depression, and other psychiatric issues.

The second health concern is that the most popular foods with HFCS also tend to be foods that kids and young adults enjoy eating with soft drinks being the most common and widely available. You can find them in most restaurants, cafes, convenient stores, food stores, and many public places where a dispensing machine can be plugged in. Salad dressing and sauces, including your favorite barbecue sauce, ketchup, and waffle syrups, have been poisoned by it. Breads that are mass produced may carry it as an ingredient, especially if the breads are marketed as some sort of sweeter bread. Breakfast cereal bars and even kids’ cereals carry large amounts of HFCS for sweetness and bulking. Many processed snacks, such as cookies, cakes, crackers, candy, and ice cream, also contain HFCS. You can also find it in packaged fruit and veggies, such as jellies, jams, baked beans, and canned fruits.

A Princeton University research team showed that all sweeteners aren’t equal, even though caloric value is the same. “Rats with access to HFCS gained significantly more weight than those with access to table sugar, even when their overall caloric intake was the same. In addition to causing significant weight gain, long-term consumption of HFCS also led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially in the abdomen, and a rise in blood triglycerides. Clearly this study shows HFCS contributes to obesity in the United States.”1 Many people are becoming cognizant of HFCS and are looking for products without it. Corn syrup, HFCS, and HMCS aren’t natural nor do they have any healthy benefits. In fact, they’re actually detrimental to a healthy lifestyle. Stay away from corn syrup in any food.


1. Parker, Hilary “A sweet problem: Princeton researchers find that high-fructose corn syrup prompts considerably more weight gain”. Princeton University: News at Princeton,

(March 22, 2010).


Excerpt from “Dr Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier” by Dr. Matt Ferenc

Soft cover available at www.drmattsplan.com

The information from Dr Matt’s Plan is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge.

Sugar Substitutes Part I


Sugar Substitutes Part I

Sugar substitutes are food additives that try to replicate the taste of sweetness without the caloric density of sugar. Natural sweeteners include sucrose (also referred to as table sugar) found in beets and sugar canes and fructose which is found in fruits. These sugars seem to have evolved into the baseline sweetness that most people’s taste buds can sense.

One natural sugar substitute created by and found in nature is called stevia, which comes from the sunflowers species in the Americas and is known as sweetleaf, sugarleaf, or stevia. The main compound is called steviol glycoside and has three hundred times the sweetness of sugar. Because of its negligible caloric value and effect of blood glucose levels, many food companies have added stevia to foods and soft drinks. Recent studies of whole leaf stevia have shown that it improves insulin sensitivity in lab animals and has a renal and hepatic protective mechanism.1,2 Although stevia is a natural sweetener, because it is three hundred times sweeter, it may affect your taste buds, making you look for more sugar-laden foods.

Most of sugar substitutes are actually artificial. Saccharin, which is a sulfa-based chemical with the primary ingredient being sulfimide, was the first artificial sweetener discovered in

1879. Because it is three hundred to five hundred times sweeter than sugar, many food companies use it in low-calorie foods. It even appears in obscure areas, such as toothpaste. Many companies often use it with other sweeteners because it has a bitter aftertaste. In 1960, studies showed that high levels of saccharin might cause bladder cancer in lab animals. People with sulfa allergies may experience gastrointestinal issues, skin problems, or other allergy-related symptoms when consuming saccharin.

Aspartame was discovered in 1965 by a company that was later purchased by a major GMO manufacturer. Aspartame, which is derived from two amino acids, aspartic acid, and phenylalanine, is two hundred times as sweet as sugar, but it is not stable in high temperatures and cooking. According to SourceWatch, aspartame is metabolized into three toxic molecules: methanol, aspartic acid, and phenylalanine. Methanol metabolites cause central nervous system (CNS) depression, vision disturbances, and other disorders that lead to metabolic acidosis and coma. Aspartic acid, which is a precursor to another amino acid, glutamic acid that affects the nervous system, at high concentrations is a toxin that causes excitation of neurons. This excitation affects every nerve in the body causing numerous side effects including dizziness, nausea and palpitations. Phenylalanine at high levels can block the transport of important amino acids to the brain, lowering the levels of dopamine and serotonin. Aspartame may also be carcinogenic because its metabolite diketopiperazine can cause cancers in the CNS, such as gliomas, medulloblastomas, and meningiomas.3,4,5

Another artificial sweetener, sucralose is sugar with an added chlorine molecule that is six hundred times as sweet as sugar.

Sucralose is ubiquitous and used in a large variety of foods, including gum, baked goods, drinks, and ice cream. Three chlorine atoms substitute three hydroxy-oxygen groups, which convert table sugar into chlorinated sugar. After the conversion, the table sugar becomes a chlorocarbon, and chlorocarbons have a history of producing organ damage, gene mutations, and reproductive disturbances. According to NewSweet, other chemicals classified as chlorocarbons are DDT, chlordane, and the highly carcinogenic chloroethylene. All chlorocarbons have been banned in the United States except sucralose.6

Sugar alcohols are yet another type of artificial sweetener. They occur naturally, although most are produced artificially. The most famous ones are sorbitol and xylitol, which are found in nature, but it’s not commercially feasible to extract them, so they’re chemically produced. They aren’t as sweet as sugar and have a caloric value, so they’re not considered a diet food. Because the intestines don’t completely digest them, they contribute to severe bloating and gas. One exception is erythritol, which the body does completely absorb and then excrete in urine.


1. Anton, Stephen D.; Martin, Corby K.; “Effects of Stevia, Aspartame, and Sucrose on Food Intake, Satiety, and Postprandial Glucose and Insulin Levels.” Appetite 55 (1) (2010): 37–43.

2. Shivanna, Naveen; Naika, Mahadev; Khanum, Farhath; Kaul, Vijay. “Antioxidant, Anti-diabetic, and Renal Protective Properties of Stevia Rebaudiana.” Journal of Diabetes and Its Complications 27 (March 2013): 103–113.

3. Rycerz, Karol; Jaworska-Adamu, Jadwiga E. “Effects of Aspartame Metabolites on Astrocytes and Neurons.” Folia Neuropathol 51 (2013): 10–17.

4. “Is Aspartame Toxic?”, Jimmy Downs, Food Consumer.org, written May 11, 2013, accessed December 12, 2013).. http:// http://www.FoodConsumer.org.

4. “Aspartame” SourceWatch, last modified October 2013, last

accessed December 2013, http://www.sourcewatch.org/index. php/Aspartame

5. “What is Sucralose, And is it Dangerous?”, NewSweet, Last

Accessed December 12, 2013, http://www.newsweet.com/ sucralose.htm


Excerpt from “Dr Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier” by Dr. Matt Ferenc

Soft cover available at www.drmattsplan.com

The information from Dr Matt’s Plan is not intended as a substitute for medical professional help or advice but is to be used only as an aid in understanding current medical knowledge.





Flaxseed has been used for thousands of years for medicinal

purposes. Ancient Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians took

flaxseed as an anti-inflammatory agent, and they believed

that it could treat gastro-intestinal problems as well. Today

the health benefits from flaxseeds are well recognized and

cultivated around the world.

Golden and brown flaxseeds are two main types of flaxseeds.

Flaxseed along with the flaxseed oil contains an omega-3 fatty

acid called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). This fatty acid helps to

lower LDL and elevate HDL, which may prevent fatal heart

attacks. Research has also shown that flaxseed has the highest

known concentrations of lignans, which are a major class of

phyto-estrogens. These phyto-estrogens have cardiac- protective

properties and anti-oxidant properties that fight cancer. The

soluble fibers in flaxseeds dissolve with water and help lower

glucose and cholesterol level in blood as well as maintain intestinal

health. The soluble fibers get a gel-like substance with water that

promotes normal bowel movements. Flaxseeds are the great source

of gamma-tocopherol, which is a special compound of vitamin

E. Vitamin E helps to maintain the integrity of cell membranes.

These seeds are also packed with B-complex vitamins.

Regular consumption of flaxseeds during pregnancy can supply

the important ingredient folate, which can prevent neural tube

defects in a fetus.

ALA has been shown to inhibit tumor growth and fight

against cancer. Studies have exhibited that lignans may also

decrease the development of breast cancer. According to Elaine

Magee, MPH, RD “Lignans may help protect against cancer by

blocking enzymes that are involved in hormone metabolism

and interfering with the growth and spread of tumor cells”.17

A study in the American Society of Clinical Oncology explained

that flaxseeds can inhibit prostate tumor growth and may have

protective effects against prostate cancer.1,2,3


1. “The Benefits of Flaxseed”, Elaine Magee, WebMD Weight

Loss & Diet Plans, last accessed December 13, 2013, http://


2. “Flaxseed”, University of Maryland Medical Center, last

updated July 1, 2013, last accessed December 13, 2013, http://


3. “What is Flaxseed? What are the Benefits of Flaxseed?” Joseph

Nordqvist , Medical News Today, last accessed December 13,

2013. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/263405.php


Excerpt from “Dr Matt’s Plan Living Longer and Healthier” by Dr. Matt Ferenc

Soft cover available at www.drmattsplan.com


Dolphins, whales and 10.2 billion land animals

One more thing I need to put out there… I don’t think its Ok, and downright horrible how some countries are slaughtering dolphins and whales, but what about the 10.2 Billion land animals that are held in Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations, being pumped with 30 million pounds of antibiotics then slaughtered in our country YEARLY! They don’t have a voice either. Japan probably looks at us and wonders “how dare we voice an opinion on animal welfare and protection” We need to set an example in our country so others would see what is right. Just sayin…


Gold Coast Magazine Feature


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