Naturopathic Medicine in Florida 

In This Issue
Pasta Fagioli
8 Easy Ways to Detox Your Home
Beans
Butterbur
Bromelain
Air Therapy
Quick Links
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Recipe of the Month:

 

Pasta Fagioli

 

 Kick allergies to the curb in style with this tasty, vitamin packed dish. Pasta fagioli is a traditional Italian dish that hails from Italy's countryside. Recipes for this tasty dish come in many variations, often based on region and family tradition. For a truly well-rounded meal, pair pasta fagioli with garlic bread and a tossed salad, and enjoy!


Ingredients:
4 cups water
1 cup dry beans (any combination of white, pinto, black or other similar bean)
5 cups of organic broth (veggie, chicken or beef)
1 large peeled, chopped carrot
1 med, chopped onion
1 large peeled, chopped potato
1 large, chopped stalk of celery
4 cloves chopped garlic
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
4-6 ounces ham, in 1 large piece (optional)
2-3 cups dry spaghetti broken into 1 inch pieces (For a great gluten-free option, try Tinkyada rice pasta.)
1 tsp dill
Olive oil
Grated parmesan cheese (optional)
 
Directions:
Step 1: Prepare the Beans.
Soak the beans overnight and rinse them before using, or try the quick soak method - bring 4 cups of water and 1 cup of beans to a boil, then cover the pot and remove it from the heat. Let the beans and water stand for two hours, then rinse.

Step 2: Cooking and Serving the Soup
In a large pot, combine the prepared beans, broth, carrot, onion, potato, celery, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper and optional ham. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for about two hours until beans are very tender and mash easily with a fork.

In the last half hour before the soup is done, cook the pasta to al dente consistency, then rinse and add a little olive oil to the pasta to keep if from sticking together. Serve in a bowl alongside soup.

Remove the soup from the heat and take out the ham; set it to the side.

Allow the soup to stand for about five minutes. While the soup is standing, shred the ham and place it in a bowl to serve with soup.

Puree the soup with a stick blender or food processor.

Serve the soup in bowls, garnish with dill, a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of parmesean cheese. Add spaghetti and meat as desired.
The Six Principles of Naturopathic 
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Legislative Updates

It means a lot to a legislator if anyone from his or her district makes an appointment to see him or her. It speaks to their personal goals of serving the public to meet you. If you are interested in speaking with your local representative or senator and want to have an appointment with your local ND please let us know. We are happy to help. 
 
We appreciate your support in making Naturopathic Medicine available to all of FL.

In Health,
Dr. Judith Thompson, ND
VP & Legislative Chair

 

Medical Disclaimer
The information offered by the Florida Naturopathic Physicians Association is presented for educational purposes. Nothing contained in this Newsletter, on the Web site, or in workshops and teleseminars should be construed as nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. This information should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Always consult with your physician or other qualified health care provider before embarking on a new treatment, diet or fitness program. You should never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of any information delivered by the Florida Naturopathic Physicians Association.
 
 April 2014

Greetings!     

 

Hoping you enjoy this month's newsletter!

 

The Doctors and Members of FNPA

8 Easy Ways to Detox Your Home

It has been reported that on average, poison centers in America handle one poison exposure case every 14 seconds - that's more than two million people each year. Most often, in-home poisonings involve everyday household items including cleaning supplies, drugs (both legal and illegal), and even cosmetics and personal care products. But other poisons can creep into your home as well, including gases, industrial chemicals and agricultural products. This spring, don't just clean your home - detox it! Here are eight easy things you can change in your home environment that will make a big, positive impact on your health.

1. Filter indoor air. After months of being cooped up indoors, you probably can't wait to open up the windows and let a warm spring breeze "clean" the stuffy out of the house. Unfortunately, that means letting a barrage of allergens and environmental toxins blow through your home as well. Replacing your air filter frequently is one easy way to combat toxins and allergens in indoor air. Another is to add extra filtration with a portable air filter.

2. Use natural air fresheners. Instead of masking odors by using candles and air fresheners, which actually introduce more toxins into the air, try eliminating them using baking soda. To get that pretty smell you love, try naturally derived alternatives such as potpourri or essential oils.

3. Drink clean, use a filter. Chlorine is a common "cleaning" agent used in the treatment of tap water. Studies have shown that chlorinated drinking water can negatively impact the thyroid, immune system and even pregnancy, possibly increasing the risk of birth defects and miscarriage. Referred to as "the chlorine dilemma," a better large-scale cleaning solution for water has yet to be found. As it stands, the best way to reduce your intake of toxins from your drinking water is to purchase a filter. The Environmental Working Group's national drinking water database & filter buying guide can help you better understand the contaminants present in your tap water and choose the best water filter for you.

4. Give your cleaning supplies cabinet a makeover. While conventional products may disinfect, they also leave behind additional toxins that have been linked to asthma, cancer, reproductive and hormonal problems. EWG's Guide to Healthy Cleaning lists hidden toxins in cleaning supplies and provides information on how to read cleaning product labels. Try some non-toxic methods, such as using diluted vinegar for windows, and baking soda paste for scrubbing. EWG's DIY Cleaning Guide is packed with DIY recipes for non-toxic cleaners and can be yours for a small donation to the cause. Also, check out green-living expert Sara Snow's advice.

5. Ditch the plastic. Storing, cooking and freezing food in plastic containing petrochemicals such as #3PVC (commonly used in food packaging and plastic wrap) and Bisphenol A (BPA) (commonly used in hard plastics like tupperware, water bottles and baby bottles) can cause these chemicals to leak into your food. Studies have linked #3PVC and BPA to a number of health problems, most notably cancer, reproductive system damage, impaired brain development, liver dysfunction and impaired immune function. Not all plastics are created equal. When purchasing plastics, look for the resin identification number located in a triangle on the product. Opt for containers made of #1, 2, 4 or 5 plastics. Better yet, ditch plastics in favor of lightweight stainless steel or Pyrex glass containers.

6. Truly clean your laundry. Laundry soaps, fabric softeners and dryer sheets, particularly those of the scented variety, are allergen and asthma inducing culprits. In fact, fragrances are among the world's top five allergens. Additionally, many softening chemicals, referred to as "quats," have antibacterial qualities, and overuse of such chemicals may cause the development of antibiotic-resistant superbugs. To reduce your family's exposure, choose free and clear laundry soaps. Skip fabric softeners and dryer sheets all together and substitute with a 1/2 cup of white vinegar per load during the rinse cycle.

7. Bathe in nature. Soaps, shampoos, conditioners and other body products often contain harmful chemicals that have been linked to cancer and other health problems. The EWG's Skin Deep Cosmetics Database is an easy way to learn more about your personal care items and help you make less toxic choices in the future.

8. Protect your grin. Most toothpaste sold in the U.S. contains fluoride. Proper usage instructions are often confused with advertising tactics, making the use of fluoride potentially very dangerous. In fact, the health risks associated with fluoride are so serious that the FDA requires a poison warning on every tube of fluoride toothpaste now sold in the US. Risks from ingestion include stomach problems, permanent tooth discoloration, skin rash, metabolism impairment and acute toxicity. The best solution to eliminating the risk of fluoride poisoning is to switch to a fluoride-free brand of toothpaste. If switching isn't an option, be sure to abide by the real rules of use and stick to a pea-size amount of toothpaste, and don't swallow.

Quick Tips for Making Your Home Healthier and Greener:
  • Decorate with air-cleaning plants. They will help cut down on seasonal allergies. - Dilute cleaning supplies and use gloves when cleaning.
  • Avoid "antibacterial" cleaners. Use soap and water instead.
  • Remember, just because the word natural, or some other variation, appears on the container does not mean that the product is truly natural, much less toxin free.

References

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Beans

Beans, peas and lentils -- otherwise known as legumes -- are incredibly nutritious. Beans, in particular, are a clean, low-inflammatory food that are typically allergen free. They are generally cholesterol-free, contain beneficial fats and fiber, and are rich in protein, folate, potassium, iron, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and B vitamins. Studies have shown that beans act as carb-blockers by slowing their absorption. Traditionally, beans have been used for treating a variety of ailments and diseases including cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, urinary tract infections, ulcers, arthritis, and kidney stones. Today, beans remain a common staple of Central and South American diets. No matter where you are, it's always best to opt for fresh beans instead of the canned variety, which tend to have a higher glycemic index than their fresh counterparts. Want some interesting ways to include more beans in your diet? For dinner, try your hand at a cultural tradition of rice and beans. Consuming these two foods together creates a nutritious tag-team. The rice provides all the essential amino acids your body needs to synthesize the protein from the beans. Or, for an anytime treat, try using white bean flour to extend wheat flour and make protein-packed cookies and other baked treats.

 

References

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Butterbur (Petasites hybridus)

A perennial shrub found throughout Europe and in parts of Asia and North America, the butterbur plant has broad leaves and lilac-pink flowers. The name comes from the traditional use of its large leaves to wrap butter during warm months. Traditionally, butterbur has been used to treat pain, headache, anxiety, cough, fever, and gastrointestinal and urinary tract conditions. It has been used topically to help wounds heal, and modern studies suggest it may also be beneficial in treating the symptoms of seasonal allergies and asthma. It is recommended to avoid raw, unprocessed butterbur due to its potential for causing liver problems with long-term use. As with any herb, butterbur may interact with other herbs, supplements or medications, and it may also cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds and daisies. Be sure to discuss butterbur with your Naturopathic doctor prior to use, to decide if Butterbur may be right for you. 

 
References
  • Butterbur (Petasites hybridus). Natural Standard Professional Monograph. 2013.
  • Herbs at a Glance. Butterbur. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

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Bromelain

Bromelain is a mixture of enzymes extracted from pineapple. When taken on an empty stomach, these enzymes can help reduce inflammation, swelling and improve breathing. Although bromelain is commonly thought of as a digestive enzyme for proteins, studies show that it can help treat symptoms of sinusitis -- or sinus inflammation -- which can be brought on by seasonal allergies. It has been suggested that bromelain also helps reduce other symptoms of sinusitis such as cough and nasal mucus. Traditionally, pineapple has been used for centuries in Central and South America to reduce inflammation as well as indigestion. To work as a digestive aid, bromelain is taken before or after meals. In Europe, bromelain is used to treat sinus and nasal swelling following ear, nose and throat surgery or trauma. Bromelain is taken orally and is available as a tablet or capsule, but be sure to check with your Naturopathic doctor before taking bromelain as it may interact with other supplements, herbs or medications
 
References
  • Photo Credit - FreeDigitalPhotos.net. 
  • Bromelain (Ananas comosus, Ananas sativus). Natural Standard Professional Monograph. 2013. 
  • Bromelain. University of Maryland Medical Center.  

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Air Therapy

Thinking outside of the box and applying therapy in the larger sense of the word, this month we discuss cleaning the air in your home as a way to relieve and heal disorders such as seasonal allergies. 

 

While some plants cause seasonal allergies, it is also true that other plants will help filter the air of various allergens as well as harmful chemicals that invade the home.

 

Aloe vera and spider plant naturally filter the air of formaldehyde and benzene which are prevalent in materials, paints and cleaners used today. Spider plant also filters carbon monoxide and xylene, a solvent used in the leather, rubber and printing industries. If you dry clean your clothing, gerber daisies are a good option as they have a knack for removing trichloroethylene in addition to benzene.  Golden pothos, a fast-growing vine that doesn't mind the dark, has been suggested for use in the garage as it will help filter formaldehyde from car exhaust before it creeps into your home. 

 

Of course, these are only a few of the many air-cleaning plants to consider. When shopping for air cleaning plants for your home, be sure to note the lighting and standard temperature for where you will keep each plant, as these conditions can affect the growth and productivity of the plants. You'll want to match plants with both their location and conditions as well as the pollutants they filter. 

 

If you're looking for a more modern option and prefer the convenience of a mechanical air purifier, remember that not all air purifiers are created equal. Many air filtration systems only clean the air of larger air particles but miss the ultrafine particles that account for about 90 percent of all airborne particles. These ultrafine particles come from motor vehicles, refineries, industrial plants and even cooking. They are easily inhaled and have been linked to asthma, heart attacks, strokes and cancer. 

 

We recommend the IQAir Cleaner Health Pro Plus, a HyperHEPA filtration system that has been proven and certified to filter up to 99.5 percent of all particles in the air, including ultrafine particles that most other filtration systems miss. As an added bonus, this air filtration system cleans the air in a four step process that produces no residual risky side effects such as dangerous ions, ozone or UV. 

 

Whichever way you prefer to clean your air, all of these options will help, promoting better breathing and body functioning, leading to a healthier home and a healthier you.

 

References

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