Food with a Pedigree

"Cauliflower," Mark Twain once wrote, "is nothing more than cabbage with a college education."

Despite this somewhat disparaging remark, the great American humorist was known to enjoy nibbling on this "intellectual vegetable" while writing his novels.

And while we may only see cauliflower as a minor addition to a tasty salad, as part of a  hors d'oeuvres plate, or hidden under a cheese sauce, this unassuming vegetable has medicinal properties. It has historically been used to treat headaches, which is one of the uses Twain found for it after the stress of losing his publishing company started giving him severe headaches.

As a cruciferous vegetable, cauliflower is known to have anti-cancer properties, and it is also rich in folate, vitamin C, vitamin E and beta-carotene. It also has an historical antecedent in treating heart disease. (If you are concerned about heart disease, please attend my lecture next week. We still have a few seats available.)  The indole-3-carbinol in cauliflower aids DNA repair in cells and acts as a mild anti-estrogen, thus reducing the growth of estrogen-sensitive tumors; intrestingly, cauliflower has been shown to slow the growth of aggressive prostate cancer.

But enough about cauliflower. Today's quiz is actually about another food with a surprisingly versatile medical pedigree. Commonly found in a couple of different subspecies, this food has been demonstrated to not only prevent cancer, but has been used in hospitals to treat cancer. In fact, patients have had this food therapy break down their cancers so rapidly that their livers were unable to keep up with processing the resulting toxins.

Not satisfied with just being useful to treat cancer, this food is also used to relieve coughing, glandular swelling and sore throat. Not a bad little trifecta there; but to make it even sweeter during this month of Cupid, this food has been used as an aphrodisiac since at at least Roman times.

Of course, your question this week is: What is this food?

The first person to email me with the correct answer will receive a 10% discount on their next purchase from our Dispensary. Your order can be of any size.

Good luck!

Dr. Avery Jenkins is a chiropractic physician specializing in the treatment of people with chronic disorders. He can be reached at or by calling 860-567-5727.

Monday Fun Facts

Here's a grab-bag full of interesting nutritional tidbits. As always, chew thoroughly before swallowing.

Sun and Supplements

Synergy is a terribly overused word, one of those very appropriate terms nearly trampled into nonsense by marketing. But synergy is exactly the right term for how one fights the risk of cancers, as shown by a recent study. According to the study, a combination of some sun exposure and vitamin D supplementation may be the most effective means of reducing the risk of breast cancer, as opposed to either one alone. If you are in the mood for some light reading, here is the report:

Source Surf and turf

It appears that there is a functional relationship between flavonoids, beneficial plant chemicals found in fruits and vegetables and omega-3 fatty acids, the type found in fish oil. A recent study demonstrates that flavonoids can actually help increase blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids thereby making these important polyunsaturated fatty acids more available for the body to use.

Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for brain and heart health and are anti-inflammatory.

Examples of flavonoids, which possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties, include EGCg from green tea, quercetin from apples, citrus and onions and curcumin from the spice turmeric.

Source The Cardiac Surgeon's Savior

A recent medical study discovered that vitamin C can reduce the risk of experiencing a serious heart arrhythmia after heart surgery.

Atrial fibrillation is a common complication of heart surgery and increases the risk for longer hospitalizations and death. Vitamin C use, post-surgery, may significantly reduce the incidence of atrial fibrillation, according to the study.


Bad Breath, Strong Bones

Diets high in garlic and other related vegetables such as onions and leeks have been shown to reduce the risk of developing the bone weakening disease osteoporosis.

Diallyl disulphide, a compound found in garlic and other related vegetables, was shown to repress the expression of certain destructive enzymes that are linked with osteoarthritis, providing a potential mechanism of action for garlic’s effect.


Don't forget: Alternative medicine = scientific medicine.

Dr. Avery Jenkins is a chiropractic physician specializing in the treatment of people with chronic disorders. He can be reached at or by calling 860-567-5727.

25 Things You Didn't Know A Chiropractor Could Do #4: Osteoporosis

It appears that the medical community is about to foist yet another quack "cure" for osteoporosis on the women of this country. Prolia, the latest alleged treatment for osteoporosis, is an injectible that was approved by the FDA primarily on the basis of a single study paid for and conducted by the company that developed the drug. Ok, let me repeat that one more time. The FDA has approved a dangerous (we'll get to that in a minute) drug on the basis of research that the developer bought. Not to put too fine a point on it, but government oversight of BP's woebegotten Deepsea Horizon was more stringent than this.

And I haven't even gotten to the good parts yet. Prolia, it turns out, suffers from the same problem as all of the other osteoporosis drugs -- it actually kills bone, rather than create healthy bone. This rather unfortunate tendency is already the subject of multiple lawsuits from women who have been permanently disfigured and disabled by the drugs that were supposed to cure them. Despite the fact that Prolia destroys bone, the FDA has allowed it's release as a treatment for osteoporosis.

Lest I forget, some of the other effects of Prolia include back pain (!), severe calcium deficiency, increased urinary tract infections, increased respiratory infections, increased risk of cancer, eczema, cataracts and joint pain.

I respectfully suggest that if your medical doctor recommends that you receive Prolia injections for your osteoporosis, you should run, not walk, to your nearest chiropractic doctor for osteoporosis treatment that is safe, effective, and inexpensive.

Which brings me to the point of this column. Yes, Virginia, chiropractic doctors do treat osteoporosis, and quite successfully.

Osteoporosis is yet another one of those lifestyle diseases that is most appropriately treated at the source, with changes to habits and diet, using both supplementation and in some cases acupuncture to correct the initial imbalance.

Using these tools, I have been able to reverse bone loss, a reversal which was significant and measurable by laboratory testing.

And it's with the laboratory tests that I begin. Because the cancer-causing radiation tests that medical doctors like to use (they *did* tell you that the bone scan increased your risk of cancer, didn't they?) provide only a snapshot of limited value. They tell you nothing about the health of the bone nor of the rate of calcium loss from the bone, both of which I would consider absolutely fundamental data to have before beginning any treatment.

With labs and physical examination results in hand, I can then put together a treatment plan goes a bit further than "take 1,500 mg of calcium daily" that the medical community substitutes for informed nutritional advice.

With my patient we work on diet, we work on exercise, we work on all of the factors that have led to the bone loss from which they suffer -- and which can lead them out of it.

Drugs? -- Who needs 'em? When it comes to osteoporosis, chiropractic physicians have a far better answer than any other health care provider.