Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Electromagnetic Radiation Protection from the Kitchen
Very few of us can elude the daily impact of manmade electromagnetic radiation (EMR). One must escape to the wide-open spaces of Montana or Western Australia to avoid perpetual Wi-Fi signals and radio frequencies (RFs) generated from cell towers and phones that are now so pervasive in our modern culture.
With Wi-Fi almost everywhere, what’s a body to do? There is much to be done three times a day as we choose the foods with which to nourish and thereby protect ourselves. Before we step into the kitchen, let’s take a look at the potential damage that is incurred by chronic exposure to EMR.
A wide range of symptoms are associated with EMF exposure. Headaches, ear ringing, loss of hearing, and non-malignant auditory ear canal tumors—known as acoustic neuromas or vestibular schwannomas—are just a small sampling of symptoms that are linked to regular, sustained usage of cell phones.1,2 Additionally it has been determined that fifty-minute cell phone exposure per day is associated with increased brain glucose metabolism in regions of the brain nearest a cell phone antenna.3 The consequences of increased brain glucose are yet to be fully understood but some researchers link the condition with memory loss as seen in Alzheimer’s disease.4
Abnormalities of the brain appear to be on the rise, as evidenced by the expansion in hospitals of entirely new wings dedicated to treating brain disorders. Is it possible that the increase in brain dysfunction and malignancies could be at least in part due to the increased presence of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) from wireless sources? Many independent scientists believe so.5
David Carpenter, M.D., professor of Environmental Health Sciences at the University of Albany, best summarizes the concern: “Electromagnetic fields are packets of energy that do not have any mass, and visible light is what we know best. X-rays are also electromagnetic fields, but they are more energetic than visible light. Our concern is for those electromagnetic fields that are less energetic than visible light, including those that are associated with electricity and those used for communications and in microwave ovens. The fields associated with electricity are commonly called ‘extremely low frequency’ fields (ELF), while those used in communication and microwave ovens are called ‘radio frequency’ (RF) fields. Studies of people have shown that both ELF and RF exposures result in an increased risk of cancer, and that this occurs at intensities that are too low to cause tissue heating. Unfortunately, all of our exposure standards are based on the false assumption that there are no hazardous effects at intensities that do not cause tissue heating. Based on the existing science, many public health experts believe it is possible we will face an epidemic of cancers in the future resulting from uncontrolled use of cell phones and increased population exposure to Wi-Fi and other wireless devices. Thus it is important that all of us, and especially children, restrict our use of cell phones and limit exposure to background levels of Wi-Fi. Meanwhile, it is imperative that government and industry discover ways in which wireless devices can be used without such elevated risk of serious disease. We need to educate decision-makers that ‘business as usual’ is unacceptable. The importance of this public health issue cannot be underestimated.”6
Now for the good news! There is much that can be done through the choices made three times a day, week after week, year after year, in the foods we eat. In addition to minimizing one’s personal exposure to devices that emit radio frequencies, the foods we choose to consume have the ability to shore up the integrity of our cells, which are most vulnerable to damage by constant exposure to EMR. It is my experience as a health practitioner that the right diet can help reduce symptoms in those with electrical sensitivity.
A HEALTHY NERVOUS SYSTEM
Let’s have a quick review of our nervous system, the part of the body that seems to be most affected by EMR. The central core of the nerve fiber is the axon. The membrane of the axon is what actually conducts the action potential. The center of the axon, the axoplasm, contains a viscid intracellular fluid. Surrounding the axon is a myelin sheath, which is deposited by Schwann cells in the peripheral nervous system and oligodendrocyte cells in the central nervous system. These cells surround every sensory nerve, with or without a myelin sheath.7
Schwann cells and oligodendrocyte cells lay down layers of cellular membrane that contain a lipid substance called sphingomyelin. Sphingomyelin acts as an electrical insulator. It has an important structural and functional purpose in all cells, especially in many signaling pathways. Sphingomyelin measures from 2 to 15 percent in most mammalian tissues and is found in higher concentrations in nerve tissues, red blood cells, and ocular lenses. It is an important phospholipid, dependent upon phosphocholine, serine, and carnitine.
Phosphocholine is an intermediate in the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine. It is needed for cellular metabolism in all cells, as well as for immune support. When injury to a cell occurs, C-reactive protein binds with phosphocholine. This process begins the immunological response by phagocytes. Phosphocholine is abundant in hens’ eggs. Choline must be consumed in the diet to maintain good health.8 The best source of choline is egg yolks.
Serine is an amino acid synthesized by the body and therefore not considered an essential amino acid, but it is biosynthesized conditionally from the essential amino acid glycine. Conditionally essential amino acids are those that have limited synthesis by the body when under special pathophysiological conditions, like stress. These amino acids should be present in the diet on a regular basis. One of the most abundant sources of glycine is long-cooked bone broth,9 a favorite of those who follow a nourishing WAPF diet.
Carnitine is biosynthesized from the essential amino acids lysine and methionine. Carnitine helps the body convert fat into energy. It is produced in the liver and kidneys and stored in skeletal muscles, the heart, the brain and sperm. Some individuals have genetic or environmental impairments in making this important amino acid and therefore regular inclusion of dietary sources is extremely important. Red meat, especially lamb, and dairy products are the best sources of carnitine.10
In summary, the key foods that protect our cells from the potentially damaging effects of EMR are egg yolks, red meats such as lamb, beef, bison, and venison, raw dairy products, and homemade long-cooked bone broths. In addition to prudent avoidance or at least minimizing the use of cell phones, cordless phones, and most monitoring devices, as well as avoiding living near cell towers, get in the kitchen and make these nourishing foods a part of your daily regime. The diet that has been consistently promoted by the Weston A. Price Foundation meets the key criteria for offering the most support for the integrity of the cells vulnerable to injury through bombardment by modern energetic frequency fields. Traditional ways indeed prevail in safeguarding our health.
CELL-NOURISHING MEAL IN A BOWL 2 pounds of beef stew meat or lamb shoulder chops, cut into 2-inch chunks 3 tablespoons tallow, lard, bacon fat, or butter 2 large onions, chopped 6 carrots, sliced 1 red bell pepper, chopped 3 cloves garlic, minced 3 cups beef or lamb bone broth (recipe below) ¾ cup red wine 2 sprigs fresh rosemary 2 sprigs fresh thyme 1-2 bay leaves 1-2 teaspoons green or pink peppercorns, crushed 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes Celtic sea salt, to taste 1 egg yolk per bowl 1 generous dollop crème fraîche per bowl
Prepare bone broth two to three days ahead. (See recipe on page 54.) Preheat oven to 300°F. Melt one tablespoon of fat in large skillet or a large Dutch oven. Brown the meat quickly. Remove from skillet or Dutch oven. Add remaining fat and sauté onions, carrots, and red bell peppers for ten minutes. If using Dutch oven, add meat, broth, wine, garlic, sweet potatoes, pepper, and herbs. Bring to a boil and then transfer the Dutch oven to the oven. If using an ovenproof casserole, place all ingredients in the skillet and bring to a boil. Transfer ingredients to the casserole and place in the oven. Bake for 2 to 3 hours, until meat and sweet potatoes are very tender.
Ladle stew into bowls. Add one raw pastured egg yolk into each bowl and stir. Top with a dollop of crème fraîche and enjoy! Serves six.
BEEF OR LAMB BONE BROTH 4-5 pounds of bone marrow and knucklebones 3 pounds of meaty ribs or neck bones 1 calf’s foot, if available, cut into pieces (optional) 4 or more quarts of purified water 2 teaspoons Celtic sea salt 4 ounces raw apple cider vinegar Assortment of vegetables, as desired • 1-2 medium yellow onions • 2-4 carrots • 3-4 celery stalks 1 teaspoon dried peppercorns, crushed Bouquet garni (tie together using cooking twine) • fresh bay leaf • fresh thyme • fresh rosemary • fresh sage Parsley, to be added in the last 10 minutes of cooking
Place the bones, meat and joints into a large pot. You may roast the meaty bones in a pan in an oven at 350°F for extra flavor. Place these in the pot. Add remaining ingredients, except for parsley. Fill pot with purified water. Allow the pot and its contents to stand for 60 minutes, giving the raw apple cider vinegar time to draw minerals out of the bones. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer; remove scum that has risen to the surface and cook for 3 to 4 hours. Remove the meat and reserve for soup. Continue to simmer for a total of 48 to 72 hours. Add parsley during the last 10 minutes of cooking. Once broth has cooled, pour into containers for refrigerating or freezing. Glass is ideal for storing food. If freezing in glass, be sure to leave two inches of air space between the top of the liquid and the lid. When defrosting frozen stock do not run hot water over frozen glass.
1. Benson, Victoria S. et al. March 28, 2013. “Mobile phone use and risk of brain neoplasms and other cancers: prospective study.” International Journal of Epidemiology; http://ije.oxfordjournals.org/content/42/3/792
2. Sinha, Kounteya. July 23, 2009. “Azad warns against excessive use of cell phones.” The Times of India. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/NEWS/India/Azad-warns-against-excessive-use-of-cell-phones/articleshow/4808807.cms.
3. Volkow ND, Tomasi D, Wang GJ, et al. “Effects of cell phone radiofrequency signal exposure on brain glucose metabolism.” JAMA 2011; 305(8): 808–813; http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21343580
4. Hoyer, S. “Memory Function and Brain Glucose Metabolism.” Pharmacopsychiatry 2003; 36Suppl1:S62±S67. http://www.utdallas.edu/~tres/memory/hoyer.pdf.
5. Biointiative Report. International EMF Alliance. http://www.iemfa.org/publications/
6. Expressions of Concern from Scientists, Physicians, Health Policy Experts & Others. Error! Hyperlink reference not valid..
7. Robert O. Becker, M.D. and Gary Selden. The Body Electric. New York: Quill, William Morrow, 1985. 241-242.
8. Choline. Linus Pauling Institute. Oregon State University. http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/othernuts/choline/
9. Fallon Morell, Sally and Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD, CCN. Nourishing Broth. New York: Grand Central Life & Style, 2014. 9,38.
10. Carnitine (L-carnitine). University of Maryland Medical Center. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/carnitine-lcarnitine
This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Winter 2014
Kim Schuette, CN, a Certified GAPS Practitioner, has been in private practice in the field of nutrition for over twelve years. In 2002 Kim established Biodynamic Wellness, located in Solana Beach, California, which now staffs four additional nutritionists whom she has mentored. Kim offers private consultations specializing in nutritional and biotherapeutic drainage therapy to address gut/bowel and digestive disorders, male and female hormonal imbalances, ADD/ADHD challenges and a myriad of other health concerns. Visit her websites Biodynamicwellness.com and Gapsinfo.com.