May 2016

Olive Branch Wellness Center
Wellness Newsletter

  Hey, Is there anybody out there!!!

If you know me you know that there are three things I truly enjoy. The first is Albert Einstein. I think Albert Einstein is amazing. I love how he thinks and how he dreams and I've read everything I can get my hands on about him. The second is……yes I have a love of old beetle bug cars which is what I drive every single day year round. Yellow with a black convertible top that is down every chance I get. If you see a yellow blur that's me speeding by you just wave. Thirdly I just crack up at "The Far Side" Comics. I have a bunch of them framed and in my kitchen (they pertain to food). There is one in particular that I quote quite frequently and it goes like this……… There is an "ice cream" type truck in the fore ground and it has music coming out of it. The song is I cuss you cuss we all cuss for asparagus!!!  The title of that little diddy is "Failed Marketing Ploys". Now don't you just love it, I know I do and it made me think that asparagus doesn't get its day in the lime light!










Ray Ilg, ND

Raynette Ilg, N.D., is the owner of Olive Branch Wellness Center in South Elgin, IL. A Naturopath who earned a Bachelors of Science in Biological Medicine and then a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine from National University of Health Sciences, she employs Nutritional Guidance, Herbal Medicine, Hydrotherapy, and Homeopathy in her clinic. Dr. Ray can be contacted via her website,
Olive Branch Wellness Center

Since it's spring time (or something close to it) I wanted to talk about a great spring time vegetable. You guessed it, Asparagus. Whether you are baking, frying, grilling or steaming asparagus it is amazing, but you ask "What are the benefits of asparagus?"   Let me tell you the benefits are plentiful.  Asparagus is loaded with lots and lots of vitamin K (helps with your immune system) and B vitamins and that includes folate. For those of you who don't know what folate does it helps your body to make some pretty important neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine which is why it makes you feel pretty stinkin good!  Other benefits include the fact that its high in glutathione (anti-carcinogen) and it also contains rutin which helps to protect the smaller blood vessels from bursting. Asparagus also is a plentiful source of vitamin s A ,C and E, potassium and zinc. Then there is the fiber component to asparagus which is great for digestive health. BUT, all of that said I am thrilled with the ability of asparagus to fight blood pressure which in turn creates heart health.

ACE inhibitors are prescribed thousands of times per day to treat high blood pressure and they do their job, but, the way they work actually is by blocking an enzyme that you need to produce a substance that narrows the blood vessels. What does that actually mean? It means that the ACE inhibitor drugs help your blood vessels relax and widen which in turn allows your blood to flow more freely and ends up lowering your blood pressure.
Here's where it gets good. Asparagus contains a natural ACE inhibitor and its useful for lowering blood pressure! The sulfur containing metabolite is asparaptine and it acts as an ACE inhibitor!  There may even be a second compound in asparagus called 2'-hydroxynicotianamine that can act as an ACE inhibitor as well. Who would have thought we could eat our way out of this with asparagus! If you want to check out the article on PubMed here's the link And you thought the only cool thing about asparagus what that it made your urine smell funny!! (BTW that's  Mercaptan that does that!)

So there you have it health in a food, who would have thought!

Olive Branch Wellness Center 630-370-7290

The Monthly "Vita - Mini"

Vitamin B1  AKA  Thiamine

I told you in my last newsletter that I was going to be talking about B1 this month, so in honour of keeping my word I'm going to give you the quick schtick on B1.
I really like B1 (AKA Thiamine) for a couple of reasons. Did you know that Thiamine is great for: enhancing circulation, carbohydrate metabolism and it even can help your digestion via the production of hydrochloric acid? Then there is the way it helps your cognitive activity and brain function. Personally I love the energy it provides. It also helps you with a normal appetite, and gives proper tone to muscles and the musculature of the intestines, stomach and heart. Thiamine is a great antioxidant which protects the body from alcohol consumption, aging and smoking. The water soluble form called benfotiamine and it is naturally found in garlic, onions, and leeks. This benfotiamine tends to last longer in the body so it provides more benefit than a pill. Benfotiamine has been showing some promising results for diabetics in controlling nerve damage and providing healthy vascular system!

Jeana's Cucina






Sweet Potato Hash Browns


    1 onion, chopped

    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and grated
    Salt and black pepper to taste
    Egg wash (1 egg beaten)
    2 tbsp coconut oil 
    tsp nutmeg


In a large skillet over medium high heat, cook the onions. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add the garlic and sweet potatoes.
Saute for 10-15 minutes until sweet potatoes are tender and onions are translucent.

Transfer the sweet potato mixture to a baking pan and brush with the egg wash. Broil for 5 minutes or until potatoes have reached your desired crispiness. They should be just a little browned on top.



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