Q & A with Dr. Hull

To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: What sweeteners can a diabetic safely use?

Q: Dr. Hull,
I was shocked to read the info on poisoning from NutraSweet! I drink diet coke like it is water. I am a diabetic and have been for 27+ years. My question: what can diabetics use other than products with NutraSweet or Splenda in them? I can't use Splenda because it makes my blood sugar rise. Any suggestions??
Thank you!

A: Thank you for your email. It is criminal what has happened to the real truth about these chemical sweeteners, isn't it?

I suggest returning to natural sugars found in the foods, and not adding any sugars or sugar-substitutes at all. The body will uptake the natural complex sugars with less of a blood sugar spike. (Heck, diabetes existed BEFORE diet sweeteners!!) Then, make sure to eat very low fat foods - not manufactured low-fat foods that are pre-packaged - but those that are non-processed, and eat lots of raw veggies, good grains, quality meats for protein, etc. These foods will not spike your blood sugar like the fake foods do.

Then, drink plenty of water all day long, enjoy some tea or morning coffee with some half & half or organic milk in place of sugar substitutes, and use the pink packet of saccharin when needed. Saccharin never caused cancer and was the subject of an unfortunate political game. I have written about this in my books.

Have you tried Stevia? Stevia is used in other countries to TREAT diabetes. Don't use too much of either saccharin or Stevia, though, or they will taste bitter.

If you absolutely crave a carbonated cola, sip on a regular one but merely occasionally. Remember to exercise regularly, get plenty of rest, and take your vitamin supplements, including a digestive enzyme to aid your pancreas. I feel these tips will help you return to a healthy lifestyle without too much sacrifice. It appears the processed, fake foods with promises of "endless pleasure with no responsibility" may be causing your blood sugar to swing all over the map!
Good luck!

To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: Are there food additives in organic foods?

Q: I have been trying to eat as many whole foods as possible and pre-prepared organic foods, but I am finding that even those foods have generic descriptions like natural flavors and vague spices. Do I have to be extra careful here, too??? If these broad descriptions can stand for anything, can I request from the companies the actual ingredients, and do they have to tell me????? It is so frustrating, and I know you understand. Thanks again - you and your staff are always a help!!! Best to you all!!


A: Oh...I so understand your frustration. The term "natural flavors" is an umbrella term for many things, including animal products. And, there is the term "organic." While it's a label that points us in the right direction, organic does not always mean what we'd hope it means. In some cases, animals fed organic feed are only "fed organic""a limited number of months prior to slaughter. Currently, the best organic laws are in California, and hopefully other states will model them. If the food package states it complies with the "California Organic Act" (1984, I believe but don't quote me), then you're getting the better organic product.

To the best of anyone's understanding of this issue, food manufacturers are supposed to provide this information. Unfortunately, the people answering their phones don't always have that information. Then, there is the issue of patented ingredients... a whole other headache, and one too detailed for this reply.

I suggest you do the very best you can, and continue what you are doing. From my experience with the artificial sweetener industry, American food manufacturers employ excellent lobbyists and crafty advertisers, shrewd legal representation, and possess familiarity with all the loopholes. We all struggle with finding the perfect foods with the perfect ingredients, and then process the shock of how expensive whole foods can be. You are doing fine. Go with your gut. If you feel like a food isn't working for you, become a detective and see what ingredient is causing the problem.

If you'd like to take this further, I believe the FDA has a site with such definitions available. You may also look at consumer advocacy and food safety sites.

Good luck!


To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: Confusion about body pH.

Q: Dr. Hull,
You indicate in your writing that a body ph of 6.5 is the goal. Many research and reference materials seem to indicate 7.5 as the goal. Please respond as to your benchmark of 6.4 pH level and why?

Best regards

A: Thank you for your question. I receive many inquiries about my philosophy on the body's pH of 6.4. I have written about this in detail in the pH section of my 10-Step Detoxification book (go to www.detoxprogram.net for more information), and I also include an explanation in the pH kit. I have written articles on this that you can find in the newsletter archives, as well. I appreciate your inquiry as to why I believe the body pH (water stores NOT blood} should be lower than the old-school assumption that the human body should have the same pH as a fresh water body found in nature (7.0 pH).

Note: the blood pH is different from the water pH in the human body, and is slightly more alkaline. The blood stream is a closed system and should not be subject to the elements circulating through the many different body systems, such as lactic acid, stomach acid, fats, waste from food enzymes, by-products, body wastes, carbon dioxide, etc. The body's water stores are constantly subject to all these acids, and will, therefore, be slightly more acidic.

If people try to maintain a body pH (saliva and urine) of 7.0 or higher, then dehydration and sedimentation of minerals and particulates take place, especially in the excretory organs such as the gall bladder, bladder, and kidneys. This is one reason for "stones" and sediments found in these organs. Also, human beings are both fresh and salt-water beings (even though we drink fresh water) opposed to the natural fresh water bodies in a lake or stream. Because we have sodium in our cells (just taste a tear or perspiration), we must protect our water stores from becoming too alkaline from saline, as well.

Many people have expressed frustration trying to maintain a body pH of 7.0, and fear that a lower body pH will create disease. But most everyone will admit that trying to maintain a 7.0 pH opposed to 6.4 is very frustrating and hard to accomplish. A body pH below 6.4 is too acidic, but being totally realistic, maintaining a pH between 6.4 and 6.6 is realistic and easy to maintain. And remember, we are referring to the body's water stores, and not the blood pH.

I hope my theory makes sense to you, and let me know if I can address any more of your concerns.

To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: Inulin in natural sweeteners.

Q: What is inulin found in natural sweeteners, and is it safe?

A: Inulin is a chemical believed to improve blood lipid levels and is currently being studied as a pre-cancer nutrient. Recent animal research shows that inulin prevents adverse precancerous changes in the colon. Inulin is recommended for diabetics, and because it is not absorbed into the bloodstream, it does not affect blood sugar levels. Inulin has a mildly sweet taste, and is filling like starchy foods. It is a preferred food for the lactobacilli in the intestine and can improve the balance of friendly bacteria in the bowel.

Inulin is found in two sweeteners new to the American market - Tastes Like Sugar® from Empirical Labs (Contact Asa at orders@empirical-labs.com or call 970-461-3780 to inquire), and Yacon, another South American sweetener from Peru. Yacon can be eaten raw, just like a fruit, and once the roots have been dried in the sun, they become sweeter. Expect to see more of these new sweeteners in the near future.

To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: Concerned about aspartame.

Q: After reading the information on your website, I am quite concerned because I do use aspartame. I am generally in pretty good shape; I work out, drink all my water, and am in good health. I am overweight, however (about 15 lbs.), and have been up and down with my weight for years. (I do love food!!!!)

My question: if aspartame makes everything low calorie, how do you go back to eating or drinking something that is 150 calories when you're used to having the same foods at 0 or 2 calories? That makes a big difference when you are watching your weight and trying to monitor your daily calorie intake. What do you suggest? I would really appreciate an answer.

A: Wow - great question! First of all, I don't believe you'll have to worry about gaining weight when you stop using diet food products. It's becoming more and more apparent in the nutrition and "diet" communities that these products don't help people lose weight. If anything, they stimulate hunger, unhealthy eating habits, and weight gain. Without going into all the details, aspartame blocks the production of serotonin, which increases cravings for carbs, leading to craving more food, and an increased appetite.

Additionally, many of these chemical food products are nutrient poor. So your body isn't necessarily getting the nutrition it needs to operate at its optimum level. Food cravings can also be the result of your body needing particular nutrients.

With that said, I've also seen a number of people experience bloating from aspartame...bloating that goes away when they stop consuming it. It's not at all uncommon for people to notice weight loss when they stop consuming aspartame.

There are many sources of this information available. I recommend you look at the more credible, up-to-date resources to decide for yourself.

To: Dr Janet Starr Hull
Subject: Contraindications of cleanses.

Q: Are there any contraindications doing a colon/liver cleanse using an all-natural, mild product? I heard that you are not supposed to do one if you've had your gall bladder removed. What would be the significance of that?

A: Good question, especially concerning the gall bladder. Cleanses are always a good thing to do, but make sure the product you choose is pure with no hidden additives. Even some health food products contain sucralose and other artificial chemicals, unnatural preservatives, and metals like titanium.

Because you have no gall bladder, you will want to use any cleanse conservatively. I suggest halving the recommended dose. Your body doesn't know your gall bladder is gone, so it's operating as if it's still in place. And, if you haven't significantly changed your diet, bile, fat, cholesterol, etc. can begin to build in the scar tissue where your gall bladder used to be. So, the liver cleanse is a good thing to do once or twice a year.

I recommend a product called ADA specifically created for this purpose. The inventor originally was looking for a good thyroid cleanse, and then discovered he had stumbled upon an excellent liver cleanse. It works so well, it removes fatty tissue, lowers BP and cholesterol, and results in weight loss for most people. I recommend using the product throughout the year. Their contact is www.verifound.com

Also, Empirical Labs has a good colon cleanse and liver cleanse. You can email Empical Labs Orders Dept for more information.

Hope this helps. All the best in health.

Posted October 2005 | Permanent Link

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