I didn’t know Kris Carr at all until my mom recommended her book to me. Her advice to read it didn’t come from anywhere. Indeed, one of her friends was suffering from cancer at a really bad stage, and knowing I was highly into my food and health, not to say my health coaching dreams, she suggested I gave her my nutrition tips to help her live at least a little bit better, and hopefully a tiny bit longer. I won’t go into details on how my coaching went because it’s not the subject of this post, but I’ll let you know how this book was a real eye-opener to me.
Long story short, Kris Carr, who was living the life (well-paid but highly stressing job, having very late nights, eating whatever she fancied and partying hard), one day was diagnosed with incurable cancer. However, Kris wouldn’t let herself die without doing anything, and she did in depth research on the matter. Until she eventually didn’t die! Today, she lives with cancer, but she actually lives! She has become so passionate about health and how to treat her body so that it would be super healthy and prevent it from getting any disease, that she now lives off of her knowledge via her blog, books and events on the subjects.
This intro sounded interesting to me, and I read the book in one shot (despite her writing style which can be a bit unusual, but don’t let yourself frightened by it!).
So here are a few key learnings of the book:
- The paramount importance of balancing pH in your body:
An acid pH (lower than 7), is caused by what we eat, but also by stress, which releases 2 acidifying hormones (cortisol and adrenalin). And the list goes on: anger, drugs, smoking, all of these cause acidity, which can be very dangerous. One reason for it is that, when your body is acid, it is going to get hold of the minerals it has stocked to fight against acidity and to take back its pH to normal (which is around 7,365, i.e. lightly alkaline). Minerals, which are what our metabolism relies on at 95 % to function, are stocked in our bones, teeth and organs. When your body fights acidity, it’ll therefore weaken all of these, all the more knowing we need 20 times as much alkalinity to fight one acid. Another reason for it is that alkalinity comes with a lot of oxygen, whereas acidity means no oxygen. Well, healthy cells in our bodies eat oxygen, whereas unhealthy cells (like cancer) can only live if there is absolutely no oxygen around them. Do I need to conclude here?
- What dairy really does to you:
I just told you about how your body gets hold of minerals in your bones to fight acidity. Well, you’ll be surprised to hear that animal protein (found in meat but also in dairy products) are rich in acid! Therefore, instead of reinforcing your bones, eating dairy will give you osteoporosis for example. Some might ask: what about calcium? You’ll be surprised – again – to learn that you’ll find loads in brocoli, all sorts of greens, nuts and seeds… even water! One fun fact: one cup of sesame seeds contain 5 about times as much calcium as a cup of whole milk. Not to mention the majority of cattle are fed with sexual hormones to prolong breast feeding, and with growth hormones to double their milk production. You’ll find all of these hormones in the milk you’ll eventually drink…
- ‘Eat your veggies’ is not just a popular hashtag:
A consequence of acidity is that you will produce free radicals (i.e. molecules which lost one electron, and which are therefore instable) to fight against it. This process is going to make your cells become older faster than they should. To destroy theses free radicals, you’ll need antioxydants (molecules which have plenty of electrons and willing to give one to free radicals, so that they can find balance again), which can be found in phytonutrients i.e. in plants, especially green veggies.
- the wreckage caused by sugar:
And by sugar I mean simple glucids, i.e. refined sugar (white rice, white pasta, white bread, white sugar… anything white basically). Not only they are causing a temporary but addictive feeling of well-being – as dopamine is produced in your brain while your glycemic index (aka the amount of sugar in your blood) rises all of a sudden – but they can help unhealthy phenomena develop in your body, like cancer. Yes, cancer! In fact, cancer cells have got 19 times more glucose receptors than healthy cells. Indeed, if they do not need oxygen to function, they need sugar. So by eating sugar, you’re giving food to potential cancers developing within your body without you knowing about them. Of course we need sugar to live, but what we really need is complex sugar, which is slowly released in your blood (that’s why we speak about low-glycemic index), and which also contains loads of goodness you can’t find in ‘whites’, such as minerals, enzymes, fibers, proteins…
As a conclusion to this maybe not so digest post, I’ll say what Kris Carr proves to us, and what I strongly believe in: genes don’t determine everything, and we have the power to make things better for our bodies by paying attention to what we eat and our lifestyle.