HEALTH ture (no conflict of interest there, right?), include your whole grains, beans, and brown rice, sweet potatoes and things like that. They would basically be the equivalent of putting twigs on your metabolic fire. They’ll burn a little bit, get things hot, but they’re not going to last very long. (And you have to ask yourself whether it’s really that good for your metabolic engine to burn “hotter” all the time….You instead want it to burn efficiently and reliably if you want it—and you—to last!) Refined carbohydrates like white bread, white potatoes, pasta, white rice, refined grains and things of that nature, probably make up the bulk of the American or western diet. They are really the metabolic equivalent of crumpled up paper on that metabolic fire. Things like certain types of alcoholic beverages, and sweetened beverages, juices, sodas and things like that, are ultimately the metabolic equivalent of gasoline or lighter fluid on that metabolic fire. So if, metaphorically, all you had was kindling to heat your house with using a wood stove for instance, then you would basically be living your life preoccupied with where that next handful of fuel was going to come from to keep your metabolic fire going. What’s the alternative? We’re told, or sort of taught by medical authorities and by mainstream dietitians and nutritionists, that glucose is “of necessity” our primary source of fuel. It’s really a very misleading statement, and it’s only true if a person has metabolically adapted him/herself to it, and rather unnaturally I might add, as their primary source of fuel. Miriam: What is the downside for the body in relying on glucose? Nora: There are many downside to that, not the least of which is a total enslavement to being constantly preoccupied with where that next handful kindling is going to be coming from. The other part to that of course is the fact that sugar is inherently damaging to the body, and there is no minimum safe amount of glucose or any other type of sugar that the human body can have without it creating some damage. And that damage becomes quite cumulative over time! We now know, for instance, that even high normal levels of glucose – in other words, non pre-diabetic, with a perfectly normal fasting glucose range but just toward the higher end – have been associ- 28 | New Consciousness Review ated with pathophysiological (neurodegenerative) changes in the brains of people according to several different studies in the last couple of years. --Most affected are areas of the brain typically associated with the development of Alzheimer’s disease (now being referred to as “type 3 diabetes”). Most of us should probably shoot for a fasting blood sugar of somewhere between 70 and 85, hopefully without any associated low blood sugar symptoms, and that’s of course the rub. One study published in the journal, Neurology in 2013 concluded: “Our results indicate that even in the absence of manifest type 2 diabetes mellitus or impaired glucose tolerance, chronically higher blood glucose levels exert a negative influence on cognition, possibly mediated by structural changes in learning-relevant brain areas. Therefore, strategies aimed at lowering glucose levels even in the normal range may beneficially influence cognition in the older population…” Sugar basically has a couple of different effects. It glycates tissues. Glycation is a process by which sugar will combine with proteins and fats, and cause them to become sticky and misshapen and start to malfunction. The combination generates something called advanced glycation or glycosylation (depending on who you’re talking to) end products. They create the acronym AGE is which is sort of appropriate because this is one of the primary means by which human beings age (in ways we don’t like). The more sugar there is, the more glycation occurs.