Do we need to supplement our diet with calcium?

Do we need to supplement our diet with calcium?

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In my last newsletter, I briefly talked about bone disease and I got several emails asking if it is good to supplement our diet with calcium. This week, I am going to cover this topic. 

Over the last few years, calcium supplementation has been quite the controversy. There are reports that calcium supplementation has been connected to heart issues, such as calcification of the arteries of the heart. In addition, for years postmenopausal women have criticized the little evidence that calcium supplementation actually prevented fractures in healthy women.

The issue is that the great majority of the calcium supplements are not bio-available, meaning that the body can’t assimilate it well and can’t utilize it correctly. When calcium supplements are poorly formulated they leave calcium deposits in the body outside the bone, leading to problems such as cataracts, kidney/gall bladder stones, calcification of the arteries, joint issues, arthritis, and so on. Which lead to the theory of calcium being connected to the conditions mentioned above.

Like I mentioned previously osteoporosis is a disease of sugar metabolism and protein deficiency. There may be no need to supplement once you address these 2 factors.

The best source of calcium is bone/chicken broth.  Other good sources of calcium are kale, spinach, collard greens, almonds, Brazil nuts, sesame seeds, okra, among others.

If you have any comments, please feel free to contact me.

yours in health,
Dr Serge

Whole wheat: friend or foe?

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Virtually on a daily basis, I am asked by patients if whole wheat is better than wheat.

Here’s my thoughts on this question:

First, wheat and grains in general are in fact a large supply of starch. This starch decomposes into sugar in the intestines in a 2-phase process. Thus, they are very hard to digest properly. The problem is that the human body is not fit for this job and a part of the starch is not absorbed and descends into the large intestines, feeding critters, causing inflammation, gasses, damage to the wall of the intestines, among other problems. Over time, one will develop insulin resistance, hypoglycemia, diabetes type 2, obesity, heart problems, and osteoporosis.

Second, whole grains, like whole wheat, contain anti-nutrients. These molecules bind to essential vitamins and minerals, making them worthless or impossible to absorb for the digestive tract. Therefore, people develop nutritional deficiencies, like a lack of iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, among others.

By the way, carbohydrates are not essential. The body can make some from fats and proteins. Therefore, you can survive and feel perfectly well on a very low or no carb diet. In addition, there is no nutrients in wheat that you can’t find in other food.

Hope this answer the question. If you have any comments, please feel free to contact me.

yours in health,
Dr Serge

Your thyroid is fine, but you are still suffering from thyroid symptoms?

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Almost on a daily basis, I have patients asking me why my blood work shows that my thyroid is fine but I still have thyroid symptoms.

There are a few key points to this question:

1. When you go see your doctor, he will order a blood work to measure TSH, the primary hormone that regulates the thyroid. And then you obtain your number for the thyroid. Doctors use we call a “functional” range as a reference number for TSH. Usually, when the number falls between 1.0-5.0, the doctor would consider that the thyroid is fine. However, this reference number is an average of all patients who have done this blood work in the past. You can see that this is a problem. You have people who are healthy, people who have some issues and people who are very sick. This average is very broad. Clinically the reference number should be tighter, around 1.5-3.0. Using this new definition, many people will be considered as either hypo or hyper.

2. The second problem with this measurement is that the doctor does not consider all the other hormones that are known to interact with the thyroid. They only measure TSH and missing a lot of information. They should order the full thyroid panel in order to have a good idea of the situation.

Because of this broad definition, many people who suffered from thyroid symptoms like fatigue, hair loss, brittle nails, weight gain, extremities cold, bowel issues, muscle pain, etc. are considered to have normal thyroid by their doctors.

Nutrition Response Testing analysis is a great tool that we use to determine the actual cause of thyroid symptoms. We only use natural products. We don’t use drugs, medications or any types of cream. We believe that by give the body the right nutrition, it will heal itself.

yours in health,
Dr Serge

Sugar: the good, the bad, and the ugly

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We have been hearing more about sugar lately. In the 80s, scientists and doctors recommended to cut down our fat intake in order to avoid heart disease. Consequently, this led to an increase in the consumption of sugar and carbs. Nowadays, scientists are starting to realize that they may have made a mistake and that sugar is the actual culprit behind the epidemic of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, osteoporosis and several other chronic issues.

Refined sugar is empty calorie. There is no nutrients in it, it is just 100% sugar. As a consequence, the body recognizes and processes sugar as it is a toxin. It depletes the tissues from calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and a variety of other minerals. This leads to the issues mentioned in the first paragraph.

Sugar may or may not include refined table sugar, grains like wheat, corn, rice, etc. and fruits in some cases. How strict you have to be about sugar depends on the severity of your conditions and how long what you have been struggling with them.

After saying this, there is some options out there to sweeten our foods. Stevia is the best sweetener. Then we have coconut sugar, dates, and honey. These are highly rich in vitamins and minerals which help the body in processing and assimilating these sweeteners. The negative impact on the body is greatly reduced.

If you have any comments, please feel free to contact me.

yours in health,
Dr Serge

Are you having a hard time losing weight? Here’s why.

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This time of the year, several people have a motivation to get back in shape and specifically to lose weight. Today,  I wanted to relate my experience with people who are having a very hard time to lose weight.

I always see at least 2 components in these cases:

1. The diet has to be looked at very carefully. Any type of food can slow down weight loss and stop it completely. I have seen people having issues with crackers, apples, bananas, cucumbers, nuts, etc. In other words, the body was sensitive to these foods and the body couldn’t lose weight. Therefore, the diet is the primary component I will look very carefully.

2. The second factor that underlies stubborn weight issue is what we call “obesogenic” molecules. These are another word for toxins. These toxins are hormonal disruptors meaning they lead to a hormonal imbalance that makes it hard to lose weight. Different glands like the thyroid and the adrenal are being affected and it will take time to rebalance everything out to normal function. But the good news is that there is hope and Nutrition Response Testing can definitively help with this situation.

yours in health,

Dr Serge

Cruciferous and thyroid health: what you should know.

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This week I wanted to touch upon a topic that we do not hear a lot about: the cruciferous vegetables and the thyroid health.

The cruciferous family of vegetables include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, cress, bok choy, kale, collard greens, among others.

These vegetables are “goitrogens” meaning they can act as antithyroid molecules, slowing down the thyroid function, and ultimately causing thyroid dysfunction. Thus, if you have thyroid issues, you may want to look at your cruciferous intake and figuring out which ones may be part of your situation.

Clinically, these are the foods that I regularly see to be a problem for some patients:

African cassava
Babassu (a palm-tree coconut fruit found in Brazil and Africa)
Bod Choy
Brussels sprouts
Chinese Broccoli
Pine nuts
Red Radish

Cruciferous vegetables are great for healthy people. They provides anti-cancer molecules for examples. But when we are handling the underlying causes of your problems, abstaining eating them may be very beneficial. Each cause is different and that is why an individualized approach is recommended.

Yous in health,
Dr Serge

What you know about bone health may be wrong!

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This week I want to cover a topic that the great majority of people is confused about: bone health.

American are the ones who consume the most dairy products in the world (along with the Finnish), but have the highest rate of osteoporosis. This is paradoxical as we are told to drink milk to prevent bone issues.

99% of the population drink pasteurized milk. Pasteurization is the process by which milk is heated to kill dangerous pathogens. In this process, most of the nutrients are rendered inactive. In addition, to determine whether the pasteurization process was effective, scientists use the “phosphatase test”. Phophatase is an enzyme present in the milk that is heat sensitive. Scientists demonstrated a long time ago that if this enzyme is inactive (dead), the milk is pasteurized and there is no longer pathogens in it. Therefore, pasteurized milk is literally a dead food.

Phosphatase is required by the body to absorbed calcium present in the milk. Consequently, most of the calcium present in the milk is not being absorbed by the body due to the lack of the enzyme phosphatase in the pasteurized milk.

So far we have learned that the body needs phosphatase to assimilate calcium present in the milk. On the other side, milk is also high in phosphorus. However, it is readily absorbed by the body, i-e the body does not need anything to absorb this element. As a consequence, the phosphorus level increases in the body after drinking a glass of milk. It is well established that the body keeps a ratio of 10:4 of calcium:phosphorus respectively. In other words, at any time, there is 10 times more calcium in the blood than phosphorus. However, in our situation, milk increases only the level of phosphorus in the blood. In order to counteract this phosphorus increase, the body will actually pull calcium out of the bones, leading to brittle bones!

In conclusion, milk or dairy products do not prevent osteoporosis and may actually contribute to it. That explains why Japanese women, who do not consume dairy products, have the lowest rate of osteoporosis in the world.

Osteoporosis is a disease of sugar metabolism and protein deficiency. In order to prevent bone disease, consume enough good quality proteins, greens, and chicken/bone broth on a daily basis.

If you have any comments, please feel free to contact me.

yours in health,
Dr Serge

Is Salt bad for you?

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For more than 40 years, doctors and cardiologists have promoted a low salt diet in order to prevent and cure high blood pressure. But the truth of the matter is that this diet does not work.

In fact, long term studies on a low salt diet suggested that people following a low salt diet are sicker and die at a younger age than people who do no refrain their slat intake.

Therefore, there is no reason to abstain from using salt.

I recommend to use real sea salt like Celtic Sea Salt, Real Salt or the Himalayan Salt.

Yours in health.
Dr. Serge


Cholesterol Fear

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It’s everywhere… “cholesterol-free, low cholesterol, get your cholesterol down, get your cholesterol level screened, don’t eat saturated fat because it raises your cholesterol, cholesterol causes heart attacks, cholesterol causes clogged arteries, cholesterol will kill you, statin drugs are lifesavers, get your cholesterol below 150, etc.”

Fortunately, this is all nothing but a scam!

The truth is that cholesterol is a type of fat essential to life.

Therefore, be afraid to plenty of cholesterol containing foods like yogurt, meat, cheese, eggs, etc.

Yours in Health,
Dr Serge

Coconut oil: friend or foe?

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Is coconut oil good or bad?

In one study, when coconut oil was fed as 7% of energy to patients recovering from heart attacks, the patients had greater improvement compared to untreated controls, and no difference compared to patients treated with corn or safflower oils.

Populations that consume coconut oil have low rates of heart disease. Coconut oil may also be one of the most useful oils to prevent heart disease because of its antiviral and antimicrobial characteristics (Journal of the American Medical Association 1967 202:1119-1123; American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 1981 34:1552).

Therefore you should not afraid to use this wonderful oil on a regular basis.

Yours in Health,
Dr Serge

Should we take statins?

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This week, I’ll briefly talk about statins. To me, statins are one of the worst medication out there. Here’s why:

Not only are statin medications failing to impact on our most prevalent disease, but they are causing more harm than good.
Cholesterol is crucial for energy, immunity, fat metabolism, leptin, thyroid hormone activity, liver related synthesis, protection from stress, adrenal function, sex hormone syntheses and brain function.

Only middle aged men with coronary heart disease benefit from taking statins, but even in these cases statins may only work in the short term and should be stopped before adverse effects can take hold.

High cholesterol levels have been found to be protective in elderly and heart failure patients.

The statin industry is the utmost medical tragedy of all times.
A government report in Canada found an overestimation of benefit and underestimation of harm where statins are concerned.

Statins are associated with triple the risk of coronary artery and aortic calcification.

Yours in Health,
Dr Serge