Most of us assume that the food we buy in supermarkets is safe. But Dr. Mehmet Oz warned on his talk show Tuesday that the food industry is attempting to cover up their use of pesticides. Plus: Find out how Dr. Joel Fuhrman's new weight loss plan can help you shed pounds by satisfying your cravings with nutrient-dense food and why he believes antibiotics can cause weight gain.
Dr. Oz is concerned that long-term exposure to pesticides has not been studied sufficiently. Moreover, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate how many pesticides farmers can use simultaneously.
Exacerbating the use of pesticides on our food: Antibiotics prescribed for our illnesses. Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of "Eat to Live Cookbook: 200 Delicious Nutrient-Rich Recipes for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss, Reversing Disease, and Lifelong Health," believes that antibiotics can cause weight gain.
Rather than take drugs, Dr. Fuhrman advocates using food as medicine. His weight loss program, detailed in "Eat to Live: The Amazing Nutrient-Rich Program for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss," is designed to protect you from disease while helping you easily lose weight without hunger because of its emphasis on nutrient-dense foods.
How can antibiotics cause weight gain? Dr. Fuhrman says that they are designed to wipe out bacteria, including the "good" bacteria that specifically help with weight loss.
And the newest research supports his theory. People who are overweight or have type 2 diabetes have less "good" bacteria than those who are healthy, reported ABC News on Monday.
"Further studies should be carried out to elucidate if the gut microbial changes are a cause or effect of metabolic diseases," said study lead investigator Dr. Yalcin Basaran, an endocrinologist. He believes that experimenting with intestinal bacteria can help control obesity as well as type 2 diabetes.
As part of the study, researchers made sure that participants had not taken antibiotics within the past three months because of the awareness that antibiotics can change intestinal bacteria. This aspect of the study illustrates that many experts believe weight gain can be caused, in part, to overuse of these drugs.
So how can you boost your good bacteria if you've been taking antibiotics? Dr. Oz and Dr. Fuhrman are proponents of probiotics.
You can eat yogurt or try fermented foods such as sauerkraut. Alternatively, consider a probiotic supplement.
Dr. Fuhrman also suggests that dieters don't deprive themselves of treats - and that includes dessert. Try using fruit to make sorbet, for example.
To make Dr. Fuhrman's Strawberry Pineapple Sorbet, combine four slices unsweetened and unsulfured dried pineapple, 1/2 cup orange juice and one 10-ounce bag of frozen strawberries. Soak pineapple in orange juice, chop, add to a blender with frozen strawberries and blend until smooth.