Good News About Chickpeas

More Good News About Chickpeas

Last month’s investigation into the metabolic effects of chickpea fiber showed that the nutritional powerhouse offers even greater benefits to the intestinal flora that we all want more of: Bifidobacterium. One of the key attributes to chickpeas is a unique type of fermentable fiber known as alpha-galactooligosccharide or alpha GOS. This fermentable fiber demonstrated consistent increases in butyrate production and had a number of favorable effects on a variety of biomarkers such as triglyceride, serum glucose, insulin, and glycated proteins that reflect processes such as insulin sensitivity and inflammation. While most fermentable fibers offer at least some benefit, more research is supporting the importance of fiber synergy as to offer food sources to multiple families of critical bacteria. This has led to a greater level of appreciation for the fiber found in whole plants as opposed to the types that are often added to fortified foods. None of the fiber found in Functional Formularies formulas is added; it is all naturally occurring in our organic, whole food ingredients. Continue reading

Canola or Rapeseed Oil

Canola or Rapeseed Oil: A wolf in sheep’s clothing

If canola oil is so safe, why do food scientists spend so much time trying to make it more stable?

Much of the world’s perception around fats and oils is based upon how the particular oil influences a population’s cholesterol level. While that model in itself is highly flawed, there are, of course, even more important parameters when it comes to choosing daily cooking oils or ingredients in recipes.  Canola, formerly rapeseed, oil is cheap, industrially-produced oil that is very high in its polyunsaturated fat content.  This characteristic makes it less stable –  not solely in cooking or food processing applications, but more importantly, in the human body, where it is incorporated into our mitochondrial and cell membranes. Continue reading

Spirituality and Health

Spirituality and Health: Getting to the Soul of the Matter

“With all that science, can you tell me how light enters the soul?”
~Henry David Thoreau

Not long ago I was walking through the aisles in the automotive department at our local Wal Mart when a soft-spoken voice caught my attention.  “Dr. Pettus, do you remember me?”  I guessed this gentleman to be in his mid-forties.  He was thin, walked with a slight limp, and had a warm glimmer in his eyes. I noticed he was wearing hearing aids and as he reached out to shake my hand I noticed a scar on his forearm.  This was the familiar scar of a dialysis shunt used to treat individuals whose kidneys have failed.  In a moment, it all came back.  “Mr. B”, I replied, “It is great to see you. It has been some time since our paths last crossed.” Continue reading

I Should Be Dead


I should have died in 2009! And I probably would have if I’d listened to the neurologist at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Boston. If we had taken his words to heart, taken them as fact rather than an educated guess, I’d be dead! If I had let his words, “I’d say you have 18 – 24 months to live,” soak into my brain like a toxic chemical spill on pristine marshland, I’d be dead! But, in the parking lot outside the hospital on that cold December day, my wife, Linda, and I made a pact that we wouldn’t let the words of any man, regardless of his scholarly pedigree, dictate the rest of our lives. Continue reading