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Food Is Function

Food is Information

Food imprints our cells with information

  • Health food:  cells work properly

  • Unhealthy food:  poor cellular function that can damage the body, such as inflammation

  • Chemicals, additives and toxins change cell function

Functional Nutrition

  • Food is much more than calories.  "All calories are not created equal". 

  • Look at food an nutrients in terms of function. 

  • Immune cells are especially sensitive to dietary compounds.


  • Phyto = Plant

  • Example:  Resveratrol activates longevity gene

  • Example:  Berry components such as anthocyanins protect your genes from damage

Immune System Basics

Immune cells, inflammation, and Food Sensitivities

  • An army of cells that defend your body from invaders of any kind

  • Microbes:  bacteria, yeast, parasites, spirochetes like lyme

  • Toxins

  • Anything that looks foreign, including food

The immune system is divided into 2 parts:

  1.  The innate immune system:  First line of defense, ready to go

    • Physical barriers:  tight junctions in the skin and mucus membranes​

    • The intestinal lining:  most important barrier for preventing food sensitivities

  2. The adaptive immune system:  Is primed by the innate immune system, needs time to respond (hours to days), and has memory

    • B lymphocytes:  antibody producing cells​

      • Antibodies are like "bullets" to kill invader​

      • 4 kinds of antibodies:  IgG, IgE, IgA, IgM

    • T lymphocytes: cytotoxic killer cells

      • "hand to hand combat"​

      • Creates lots of inflammation

What is inflammation?

  • Release of chemicals and proteins from immune and other cells

  • Role:  Defend the body and attack the foreigner

  • But also irritates and can cause damage to your tissue

  • Brief:  supposed to turn on and then off again when "danger" is over

Chronic Inflammation

  • Effects every cell in your body

  • Local:  Pain in muscles (Fibromyalgia) and joints (Arthritis)

  • Systemic inflammation:

    • Symptoms:  brain fog, fatigue, feeling puffy​

    • Examples:  Fat cells

    • Find the source:  rule of tacks

Can Food Cause Inflammation?

  • You bet!

  • Food triggers release of:

    • Inflammatory molecules​

    • Antibodies IgE, IgG, IgA ("bullets")

  • Food allergy vs Food sensitivity:  different kinds of immune reactions

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