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Blackstrap molasses, which is a thick, dark syrup is made when sugar cane plants are processed to make sugar. Even though the refined sugar is largely considered unhealthy, the thick, syrup of molasses holds minerals and nutrients that are absorbed by the plant. These minerals and nutrients include: Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Manganese, Vitamin B6, Copper and Selenium. Molasses also has no fat, cholesterol and barely any sodium. Therefore, it can be consumed by a diabetic person. It is important to consume this product in moderation, so therefore no more than one tablespoon per day.
 Here are the top health benefits:
  1. Prevents Anemia: Blackstrap molasses is a great source of iron and therefore can be essential to someone who has iron-deficiency anemia. Since it is a good source of iron, it helps the body to create more red blood cells, which carry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.
  1. Reduces Menstrual Problems: Blackstrap molasses contains certain minerals, such as Magnesium and Calcium, that can help relieve menstrual cramps. It can also help the body to maintain healthy muscles in your uterus.
  1. Cures Constipation and Improves Other Digestive Problems: Blackstrap molasses is a natural laxative which can soften the stool. It can help to relieve constipation and make the bowels more regular. This is due to the high Magnesium content in the molasses that helps to relax muscles and bring water into the stool, which makes it naturally easier to pass.
  1. Improves Heart Health: Blackstrap molasses can help to control heart related issues, such as palpitations, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and more. This is because the molasses is high in Potassium, Iron, Calcium and Magnesium. All of these nutrients help to prevent the body from experiencing deficiencies that can cause heart palpitations.
  1. Combats Stress: A common vitamin that is recommended by health experts to improve your mood and ease the effects of stress is Vitamin B.  This vitamin is found in blackstrap molasses and therefore can help the brain and nervous system to function properly. It can also help you to feel relaxed, fight stress and fight fatigue.
  1. Prevents Cancer: It is also believed that blackstrap molasses can also be used to prevent and treat certain types of cancer. This is because the molasses contains Selenium, which helps the cells to defend themselves against cancerous cells.
  1. Increases Stamina and Energy: Blackstrap molasses can also help to give you more stamina and energy. Since it is made from sugar, it offers a temporary energy boost when it provides your body with carbohydrates that are converted into energy in your body.
  1. Maintains Strong Muscles and Bones Blackstrap molasses also is high in Calcium, which helps the body to strengthen bones. One tablespoon of the molasses can provide your body with over ten percent of your daily value of Calcium.
  1. Improves Sleep Blackstrap molasses can even help to cure insomnia, since it is high in Calcium. Calcium can help the body to produce melatonin, which helps your body to feel tired. The Magnesium in the molasses is also a natural nutrient that helps your body to feel tired.
  1. Maintains Hair Health: Consuming blackstrap molasses on a daily basis can even improve your hair health, growth and color.


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Addressing Oral Contraceptives, the Liver and Ways to Detox

By Jena Covello and Alexa Ouaknine


 The liver is our primary organ of detoxification and works to remove toxins and waste from the blood, while filtering and sorting nutrients that our bodies need for daily functioning. It is almost as if the liver receives a small package, determines what is inside the package, and reacts accordingly. Our health and wellbeing is a reflection of our body’s ability or inability to remove and purge toxins, and the liver is a great place to begin when addressing any health concerns. We need to understand the liver, support it, and repair it so that it can perform optimally. Both the benefits of a healthy liver, and the consequences of an overburdened one are plenty.

 The liver uses a two-step detoxification process to filter hormones and toxins into the bloodstream. In phase one, the liver repackages harmful chemicals into less harmful ones, and gets them ready for elimination. These chemicals are converted to water-soluble substances that are secreted through bile, urine, or feces in phase two. Both detox pathways must be properly nourished and act in conjunction with one another for the elimination of waste to occur. If one is failing to operate sufficiently, toxic free radicals build up, causing a number of problems.

 Any digestive issues can tax the estrogen-detoxification process that takes place in the liver. Because the liver is the main organ involved in detoxification in our bodies, any impedance of the detoxification process in our liver resulting from poor diet, alcohol, drugs or toxins can lead to estrogen dominance. Harmful estrogens are difficult to detoxify and are stored in fat. Estrogen dominance in women can lead to an increase in PMS symptoms, uterine fibroids, and endometriosis, as well as symptoms including sluggish metabolism, bloating, thyroid dysfunction decreased libido, foggy thinking/memory loss, fibrocystic breasts, irritability, and weight gain around abdomen and hips. Even further, birth control pills and synthetic hormones stress the liver and cause benign cysts. The biochemical effects of the sex hormones on the liver are prolific. When women take birth control pills, a woman’s natural rhythmic cycles of rising and falling levels of estrogen and progesterone turn into constant high levels of estrogen. This creates an imbalanced hormonal environment, which leads to nutrient deficiencies, benign liver tumors, liver diseases, and countless other negative side effects.

 It is known by doctors that long term use of the Oral Contraceptive Pill can increase the incidence of liver tumors such as adenomas and hemangiomas. Hemangiomas are tumors made from blood vessels and adenomas are round shaped tumors. These are usually benign.

 Let’s be honest, sometimes women need synthetic hormones to manage PCOS and pain caused from fibroids, endometriosis and painful cycles. You can detox the liver and shrink liver tumors and keep your liver in check by taking selenium in the form of Selenomune which contains three forms of selenium that have been shown to exert anti-cancer effects. It also contains Vitamin C, Folic Acid, Vitamin B-12, Iodine, Zinc, Manganese, Chromium, Molybdenum, Boron and Brewer’s Yeast. This is a powerful formula to boost the strength of the immune system and increase energy levels.

 So many women take the oral contraceptive pill for years without having checks on their liver such as a blood test for liver function or an ultrasound scan of their liver. This is because no one warns them that prolonged use of the oral contraceptive pill can cause liver problems.

 Estrogens and oral contraceptives are associated with several liver problems including sluggish bile flow, dilatation of spaces in the liver, liver adenomas, liver cancer, clotting of the veins in the liver and an increased risk of gallstones.  These side effects are more common with higher doses of estrogens, as were used in the early high dose estrogen formulation of oral contraceptives, but they have also been described with use of more modern birth control pills and with low dose, estrogen hormonal replacement therapy.

 Signs you could be suffering from an impaired liver:

  • Bloating and gas
  • Endometriosis/Adenomyosis
  • Rashes
  • PCOS
  • Uterine Fibroids
  • Painful Periods
  • Acid reflux and heartburn
  • Constipation
  • Jaundice
  • Inability to lose weight
  • High blood pressure
  • Moodiness, anxiety or depression
  • Dark urine
  • Rosacea
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Bruise easily
  • Poor appetite

 Liver-boosting supplements and herbs:

 Organic Sulfur/MSM

  • Your liver requires high levels of sulfur in order to carry out phase 2 detoxification.  Sulfur is found in foods like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, onion and garlic.  Many people do not consume adequate sulfur.  This mineral also has an anti-inflammatory effect in the body and is excellent for painful, inflamed joints. MSM is a natural form of sulfur; it stands for methyl sulfonyl methane.  MSM works most efficiently when combined with vitamin C.


  • Neutralizes free radicals, enhances the immune system and detoxifies the liver

 Holy Basil

  • Contains essential oils that help combat bacteria and heavy metals.

Milk thistle

  • This “king” of detoxifying herbs helps eliminate the buildup of heavy metals, endocrine disruptors, prescription drugs and alcohol from the liver.

Dandelion Root

  • Natural detox flush.

Castor Oil Packs

  • Relieves constipation, improves immune function, and aids in detoxification.

Vitamin E

  • Powerful antioxidant that helps to reduce free radical damage and balance hormones.

Vitamin B12

  • helps keep the nervous system and red blood cells healthy and is important for protein metabolism.

Vitamin C

  • High in antioxidants and has protects the liver from oxidative damage, particularly when used in combination with vitamin E.


  • Protects the liver from free radical damage and preserve its elasticity and detoxifying capabilities.

 Alpha lipoic acid.

  • Removes toxins and byproducts of fat metabolism and fends off the toxic effects of alcohol. Alpha lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant that also protects other antioxidants, including glutathione and CoQ10. No other nutrient does this. Lipoic acid may be even more effective when taken in combination with milk thistle and selenium

 Liver Detox:

 A great guide to liver detox here

 Liver detox - detoxing is such a good way to invest in your health. It is the way the body heals and repairs itself, but be careful to never detoxify without addressing foundational issues. In order to detox, all elimination pathways must be open.

 Therapeutic foods for the liver:

 Warm water with lemon first thing in the morning

  • This is extremely important. Warm water with lemon first thing in the morning helps to flush the digestive system and rehydrate the body.

Leafy Greens

  • The abundant fiber found in leafy greens, and their inflammatory and antioxidant properties help nourish the liver.


  • One of nature’s most powerful foods; the liver contains high amount of vitamin B and helps with detoxification and supporting liver function.

Aloe Vera

  • Digestive tonic and pain reliever.

Green Tea, especially matcha green tea

  • High in catechins that act as antioxidants in the body, combatting free radicals within the blood, and supporting liver function.


  • Stimulates bile flow and relaxes bile ducts, helping break down fats. It calms the stomach for optimal digestion.


  • Promotes elimination of intestinal gas and stimulates digestion.

Bone broth

  • Sooths the digestive tract and supports the integrity of the gut lining.


  • Increases bile production and flow, which helps to carry toxins from the liver out of your body.

Beet Juice

  • Natural blood cleaner that helps the body detox and cleanse the blood of heavy metals, toxins and waste.


More tips:

  • Drink half your weight in ounces of clean, filtered water (i.e. 150 lbs. = 75 oz. of water) this keeps the body flushing appropriately. Water keeps the blood fluid so that toxic material may be delivered to the lymph and liver.
  • Eat organic whenever possible to avoid pesticides, herbicides, and heavy metals.
  • Eliminate refined carbohydrates and sugar from the diet.
  • Avoid endocrine disruptors – phthalates in plastics like BPAs, herbicides, heavy metals, etc.
  • Be aware of chemicals in our foods, unfiltered drinking water, cosmetics, and household cleaning products.
  • Avoid alcohol, drugs and cigarettes.
  • Minimize stress – it raises cortisol and reduces progesterone.
  • Sweat therapies – infrared sauna.
  • Enemas/Colonics
  • Probiotics to ensure you are having regular bowel movements
  • Frequent amount of movement and/or exercise is important.

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By Jena Covello and Alexa Ouaknine







Highly stable

Relatively stable

Relatively unstable

Do not go rancid easily

Do not go rancid easily

Go rancid easily

Solid or semi-solid at room temperature

Liquid at room temperature

Always liquid

Non-essential because the body can make these on its own

Non-essential because the body can make these on its own

Two are essential

·       Linoleic Acid

·       Alpha-linolenic Acid

Found in animal fats and tropical oils – coconut oil, palm oil, grass-fed meat and dairy

Found in olive oil, avocados, and various nuts

Found in wild caught fish, flax, nuts, and seeds

Safe at higher heat

Safe at low heat

Never heat or use in cooking




(Frying, baking, broiling, grilling and roasting)


(Quick stir-frying, light sautéing, and slow/low simmering)



Organic virgin coconut oil, ghee, grass-fed butter, animal fats- lard, beef and lamb tallow, organic virgin red palm oil.

Olive oil, avocado oil.

Fish oil, flax oil, hemp oil, pumpkin oil, macadamia nut oil, sesame seed, and peanut oils.

Soybean oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, sesame oil, grape seed oil, safflower oil, rice bran oil.


***Make sure to buy oil that is stored in dark glass bottles. Light and oxygen putrefies oils, making them damaged fats that are not fit to consume.  Living fats and oils are extremely sensitive to light, heat, and oxygen and therefore become rancid easily. The more unsaturated the fat, the more unstable it is.


 Coconut oil:  Coconut oil should be organic and unrefined in nature. Coconut oil is almost fully saturated, making it the best option for cooking and frying at higher temperatures. Coconut oil contains medium chain triglycerides, or MCTs, which don’t require pancreatic enzymes to be digested, making them available in our body for immediate energy use.

 Ghee (Indian Clarified Butter): Ghee is a stable, saturated butterfat with the milk solids (casein proteins) removed, which is why many people who are intolerant to dairy and/or butter can often tolerate ghee. It is safe for cooking and light frying. Ghee should be made from organic, grass-fed butter.

 Animal fats: Animal fats in this category should be from organically raised, grass-fed pastured animals. Cooking with these fats give us access to nutrients such as fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K.

 Red palm oil: Red palm oil should be organic and unrefined in nature. Its paprika-like flavor makes it a great option for roasting vegetables with.


 Olive oil: Olive oil should always be extracted via expeller pressing. It contains 75 percent monounsaturated fatty acids, making it relatively stable for cooking. Lightly cooking with olive oil over a medium heat (less than 400 degrees) is safe.

 Avocado oil: Avocado oil is extracted from the fatty pulp, which is high in monounsaturated fatty acids, making it similar to olive oil and its rules for cooking.


 The polyunsaturated fatty acids in this category should never be used for cooking. If at all, these oils should be consumed in moderation and should never be refined or processed. Use these oils sparingly in salad dressings, added in small amounts to condiments or smoothies, or consumed in limited quantities from a spoon as a dietary supplement. These oils are highly unstable and highly reactive, and cannot be heated or exposed to light.


 Because of their genetically modified status and heavy pesticide levels, corn and soybean oil should be avoided. These oils are highly processed they have many chances to be exposed to heat and light often, they become damaged fats, which are not fit for us to consume.

 Canola oil: Canola oil is extracted from the genetically modified crop, rapeseed, and is highly processed. Before reaching its final product, canola oil must move through damaging extraction processes to be harvested and deodorized. This oil does not even belong in the human body, yet it is the current oil of choice for prepared foods at Whole Foods Market.

 Video of how canola is made here

Did you know cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death globally and in the United States? The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends canola and soybean oils as heart healthy oils in the place of “bad fats” like coconut oil. It is also recommended to replace butter with reduced fat, whipped, or liquid spread butters, which are almost always made with soybeans and canola oil, and oftentimes have trans fats, called partially hydrogenated oils. Trans fats are manmade fats, do not occur anywhere in nature, and are heavily linked to cardiovascular disease. Trans fats, hydrogenated fats, and highly processed vegetable oils are toxic to consume and interfere with the critical role healthy fatty acids play within the body. While saturated fat is very stable, polyunsaturated fats are unstable and oxidize when exposed to heat, light, and air. These fats go rancid and produce free radicals in the body, putting us in a pro-inflammatory state. Inflammation is the driver of all disease, especially cardiovascular. For these reasons, polyunsaturated fats should never be used for cooking due to their reactivity and instability

Stability and reactivity are important when considering good and bad cooking oils. When we hear good fat versus bad fat, the average American consumer, including plenty of trained experts and educators, think that bad fat means saturated fat. Despite what this popular misconception states, saturated fats are the best for cooking, as they are highly stable and hold up well to heat. Coconut oil, palm oil, ghee, and reserved animal fats are all excellent and stable options for cooking at high temperatures. Monounsaturated fats like olive oil and avocado oil are relatively stable and require very little processing, making them also safe to use in cooking, but at lower temperatures. The difference between good fat and bad fat is determined by the way they are processed, not in the inherent nature of their source, with the exception of canola, soy, and cottonseed oils, which should be avoided completely.

So why does the AHA publish this misinformation? There are a couple of things to keep in mind here. First is where they get their money, and second, where they get their information data from. The AHA is a nonprofit, so they need to make money on their research. These things come from the USDA, whose two key missions’ completely contradict one another. The first is to serve the health of the public, and the second is to maximize the economic growth and profit for the agricultural sector for the U.S. economy. The words “profit” and “growth” should not be listed next to the concern for the general health of the public. The support and research is in favor of big foods, instead of smaller companies who are doing the right thing. Because of these money driven guidelines, factory created fats and oils have become superior to the healthy fats we have been using forever.






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