My favorite articles from this week . . .
Is White Bread GOOD For You???
Katie over at Kitchen Stewardship has been hosting a fascinating debate on the value of soaking whole grains. Her tenacity in pursuing this subject rather than just accepting the Nourishing Traditions stance on this makes me wonder if she will be the Sally Fallon of our generation.
For the record, I do soak my grains and Sally Fallon authored the most incredible nutrition/cookbook I have ever found. I just think it’s amazing that someone is building on her work and pushing the research further.
I’ve always hated white bread. It’s too sticky and feels like it’s reverting to dough in my mouth.
Imagine my shock when not one, but THREE of the five “expert” panelists on my Soaking Grains Debate weighed in with an opinion in favor of white flour, in one way or another.
It made me want to go buy a loaf of Wonderbread. And then throw it at my computer screen. Or maybe feed it to the ducks.
To read more, visit Kitchen Stewardship
Can Dirt Do a Little Good?
As you can see in the above pic of Katie eating dirt from our organic garden, I clearly think it does. Our immune systems were made to fight. If we don’t give them something real to go to battle with they will create an imaginary enemy and conquer that. That’s what autoimmune diseases are mostly about. Our bodies attacking themselves because we eliminated all other threats.
For the record, I don’t agree with the solution this article hints at, which is that we should create pharmaceuticals that mimic the beneficial bugs found in nature. I think we should just lock our inner germaphobe up and let our kids (and ourselves) get dirty once in awhile.
Note: In a country such as ours, where access to good nutrition is optimal (if you know where to look), our bodies will do quite well. In some of the countries studied I believe the outcomes have more to do with immune weakness due to malnutrition vs. immune failure due to overload.
According to the “hygiene hypothesis,” first proposed in 1989, exposure to a variety of bacteria, viruses and parasitic worms early in life helps prime a child’s immune system, much like sensory experiences program his brain. Without such early instruction, the immune system may go haywire and overreact with allergies to foods, pollen and pet dander or turn on the body’s own tissue, setting off autoimmune disorders.
Read more at The Wall Street Journal
Dazzling and Amazing Lesser-Known Facts about Breastfeeding
Think you’ve heard everything? I thought I knew everything there was to know about the awesome physiology behind breastfeeding. Not even close. Here are just a few of my favorites:
- What Hooters? They’re Heaters! Your Breasts Are Able to Detect Even a One Degree Drop in Your Baby’s Temperature and Warm Up. Really!!!! You are the best incubator/warmer there is. Wrapping that baby up like a Christmas present is necessary if he/she will be away from you. But the best way to keep her warm in the early days is to cuddle with her skin-to-skin with a blanket over the two of you. Your skin contact means that baby will have to expend fewer calories regulating her own temperature. And, it’s a delicious experience not to be missed! Bergström A, Okong P, Ransjö-Arvidson AB. Immediate maternal thermal response to skin-to-skin care of newborn. Acta Paediatr. 2007 May;96(5):655-8.
- Breastfeeding Can Reduce the Need for Braces. The human mouth was not intended to accommodate artificial (rubber or latex) nipples. The action of suckling on the breast helps the proper formation of the jaw, palate, teeth and gums. The longer you breastfeed, the more likely this benefit will occur. Leite ICG, et al. Associação entre aleitamento materno e hábitos de sucção não-nutritivos. Revista da Associação Paulista dos Cirurgiões Dentistas 1999;53:151-5; Paunio P, Rautava P, Sillanpaa M. The Finnish Family Competence Study: the effects of living conditions on sucking habits in 3-year-old Finnish children and the association between these habits and dental occlusion. Acta Odontol Scand 1993;51:23-9; Degano MP, Degano RA. Breastfeeding and oral health. A primer for the dental practitioner. NY State Dent J 1993;59:30-2; Labbok, M.H. “Does Breastfeeding Protect against Malocclusion? An Analysis of the 1981 Child Health Supplement to the National Health Interview Survey” American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 1987
- Breastfeeding Reduces Bed-Wetting. Children breast-fed as infants are less likely to wet the bed later—possibly because they have a developmental edge. Barone JG, Ramasamy R, Farkas A, Lerner E, Creenan E, Salmon D, Tranchell J, Schneider D. Breastfeeding during infancy may protect against bed-wetting during childhood. Pediatrics. 2006 Jul;118(1):254-9.
To read the complete list, check out Best for Babes