This week on the blog we're diving into a really awesomely inspiring topic: Epigenetics. What on earth does this have to do with pancakes? Well- the pancakes you choose to eat might just have an affect on how your genes choose to express themselves. Stay with me.
We are hanging in a society, at a time, when scientists can test our genetic make-up, our DNA, for just about every disease under the sun. One component that always seems to be missing for me in these studies is the So what? factor . So what? You found the genetic marker for breast cancer (or fill in the blank here for the condition of the hour___). Does this mean I need to come and get screened more often so that when the disease finally shows up we can all celebrate that we caught it early?
Seems like a very scary way to go through life- waiting and wishing... The answer to the So what? factor should be followed by So what can I do now to prevent this?
We know, without any tests, that if there is a condition that runs in the family, it's likely something we need to watch out for. Whenever I hear this I often have to refrain from asking whether it is the disease that runs in the family or the lifestyle.
What few of us realize is that we can change, or alter the genetic cards we've been dealt. We may have a certain set of cards in our hand, but we have the ability to re-regulate the DNA sequence to alter its expression. That is what epigenetic is about.
Epigenetics is the ability to alter the expression of our genes by epi or outer influencing factors.
See- when the medical science community- and often organizations that raise funds for these communities site "genetics" as non-modifiable risk factors- they are only telling half the story. It is true that genetics can indicate higher risk of a specific condition, but right and wrong living can influence the expression of those genes. In short, this means that if we know we carry a cancer gene, or autoimmune runs in the family, we don't have to watch and wait for it to show up for us, we just have to work towards preventing it. Remember- early detection is not the same as prevention.
Dr. West0n A. Price was one of the first to study this. A dentist, he looked at identical twins- one who ate the traditional diet where there other moved to a big city and adopted a modernized, processed diet. Their genetics are identical but through diet and lifestyle, the genetics began to express themselves in different ways. These genetic markers are then passed along through generations. This would be a very logical explanation for why my generation, is generally more pre-disposed to a whole lot more auto-immune diseases, cancer and diabetes than, say my grandmother's generation. IPre-disposition to disease is carrying an increasingly heavy burden in every subsequent generation that strays further from a natural, real foods based diet to rely on processed food, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and less exposure to clean air and water.
This brings me back to today's epigenetic lesson. There are three things you need to remember:
1. The type of pancakes you eat could very well determine whether you get that hereditary disease as well as the health of your unborn children.
2. You can totally blame your parents for the gene card you've been dealt and the work you have to do to work against it, but you absolutely CAN NOT EVER shrug your shoulders as you eat your Big Mac and say "kidney stones, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, glaucoma, and heart attacks run in my family- it's inevitable so I might as well enjoy this cow cocktail of a burger".
3. We have absolutely every reason to do all we can to redefine our own genetic expression to help ensure the genetic switches responsible for diseases of degeneration and decay don't get turned on and hopefully, don't get passed on.
Let's then just begin with health promoting, disease preventing, anti-aging awesome epigenetic pancakes. Why? Because as Ann Wigmore, a pioneer in cancer therapy, says "The food you eat can either be the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison". (Tweet it!)
Yield: 10 Pancakes
- 1 cup brown rice flour
- ⅓ cup raw cocoa powder
- ¼ cup arrowrrot starch
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- ¾ cup warm water
- 2 bananas
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 cup blueberries
- 2 tbsp goji berries, ground
- 2 tbsp flax seeds, ground
- 2 tbsp, grated coconut
- equals parts each of:
- coconut oil
- maple syrup or
- coconut nectar
- flax oil
- In a large mixing bowl, blend all dry ingredients together including brown rice flour, raw cocoa powder, arrowroot starch, baking powder, and baking soda.
- In a blender, blend together ground chia seeds, warm water, bananas, honey and coconut oil.
- Pour the wet into the dry and stir in blueberries.
- Heat your skillet to high heat- until water sizzles on the pan then reduce to medium. Add coconut oil or butter to prevent sticking and scoop out about ¼ cup of batter.
- Cook until you see bubbles coming through, than flip.
- Serve hot with sprinkled topping and syrup blend.
Question Of The Day: What is one thing you do everyday for your health? (Reading me doesn't count!)