High Vitality Health Care

(Previously Barefoot Acupuncture Clinic)


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Functional Nutrition

Functional nutrition therapy has been central to Chinese medical practice since at least the 21st century B.C.. Nutrition therapy consists of providing your body with the nutrients it needs to heal itself, using high quality, nutrient-dense whole foods and whole-foods based supplements when/if necessary.

Chinese medicine has always highly recommended animal foods, including organs and gelatin, for prevention and treatment of disease and maintenance of health. In the textbook Chinese Dietary Therapy, on page 103, Dr. Jilin writes:

"The main edible parts of larger animals are their muscles (meat). The meat of these animals is mostly mild in nature and nutritious and can enrich Qi and Blood, or reinforce the Liver and Kidney.

"Some internal organs such as the liver, heart, stomach, lung, kidney, brain and spinal cord are also used for food and this organs have different effects.  Broadly speaking, they can nourish corresponding organs in the human body. This is the general principle of TCM in the treatment of human organ illnesses. In addition, birds' eggs are also effective in nourishing the Blood, Qi and the Kidney. "

Animal foods and fruits together provide all the nutrients needed for human health in the most bioavailable forms, with little or no toxins.  Grains, beans and vegetables are inferior foods with lower nutrient density or bioavailability and higher levels of naturally occurring toxins put there by Nature to deter animals from eating the vital parts of the plants. In his article "Vegetables, etc. – Who Defines Food?" biologist Ray Peat, Ph.D. explains:

"The toxins of plants include phenols, tannins, lectins/agglutinins, and trypsin-inhibitors, besides innumerable more specific metabolic inhibitors, including “anti-vitamins.” Unsaturated fats themselves are important defenses, since they inhibit trypsin and other proteolytic enzymes, preventing the assimilation of the proteins that are present in seeds and leaves, and disrupting all biological processes that depend on protein breakdown, such as the formation of thyroid hormone and the removal of blood clots....  

"Animal proteins, and fruits, because they contain the lowest levels of toxins, should form the basis of the diet. Not all fruits, of course, are perfectly safe--avocados, for example, contain so much unsaturated fat that they can be carcinogenic and hepatotoxic."
                                               Ray Peat, Ph.D. 

The body is designed/adapted to obtaining nutrients from complex whole foods.  Animal products and fruits have the highest nutrient density and most bioavailable nutrients, with the lowest levels of potential toxins. These are the basis of functional nutrition therapy.  

We outline the basics of nutrient-dense eating in our book Meats & Sweets: A High Vitality Diet.  "Meats" is short for all animal products, including dairy products and eggs, and "sweets" refers to Nature's sweet foods: fruits, honey and tree syrups (such as maple syrup). 

Why Functional Nutrition Supplements

However, if you have a structural or functional disorder, it generally means your body has lacked sufficient nutrition for healing for a long time. You can heal with a nutrient-dense diet alone, but the process will go faster if you provide additional supplements of whole food origin. 

Many if not most people need to use some form of nutritional supplement these days.  Studies show that the nutritional content of common foods has declined since the 1940s. Conventional farming has used synthetic fertilizers and mono-cropping, which can strip the soil of nutrients, resulting in less nutrient-dense foods. Urban life, stress, pollution and toxins also increase our nutritional requirements. On top of this, few people eat traditional nutrient-dense foods like organ meats, egg yolks and dairy products in sufficient amounts on a daily or regular basis.  

Whole Food Supplementation

As mentioned, the body is designed/adapted to obtain nutrients from whole foods, not isolated chemicals found in most supplements. The latter can add to the toxic load and create imbalances.

Concentrated whole foods supplements supply the body with vitamins, minerals, and accessory compounds in forms created by Nature.

Standard Process Supplements

We use supplements from a variety of quality providers, but many of our favorites are made by Standard Process.  They often work better than other products. This video explains why: 

Standard Process supplements consist of complex formulas of mineral, plant and animal extracts or desiccates, designed to create products that provide functional nutrition support for specific body structures and functions. 

Functional Nutrition Evaluations

We provide our patients with individualized food and supplement recommendations based on clinical evaluation of your signs and symptoms with physical examination and the systems survey

We can also evaluate blood test results when additional clarification is needed.  We are trained to evaluate such tests, but don't order blood tests ourselves. You can bring us tests that you have had ordered by other providers, or (with our guidance) order the necessary tests yourself using HealthWaves (in Phoenix area, best value for many basic tests!) or Private M.D. Labs (provides more advanced testing).

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Upgrade your health with Meats & Sweets: A High Vitality Diet