Holistic Health Blog
Dr. Cathy Rosenbaum

Aduhelm Receives FDA Approval for Alzheimer’s Disease – Controversy Exists

This week’s FDA approval of Aduhelm, a new monthly IV infusion to treat amyloid plaques in patients with Alzheimer’s disease, has generated lots of controversy in the medical community.  The FDA Advisory Committee voted not to approve this product, and three of its members resigned in protest over the FDA approval.  Governmental, professional, and advocacy entities need to tell patients, caregivers, and clinicians about Aduhelm risks and limitations in effectiveness based on the outcome if its two clinical trials.  This product is promising, but not the magic bullet because reduction in amyloid plaques alone may not translate into less clinical progression of Alzheimer’s disease.  Tell us how you feel about the FDA approval.

Read in STAT: https://apple.news/AJLNUjslOSB-dXNNMtwOcvg

One-Pot Tomato Lentil Pasta

One-Pot Tomato Lentil Pasta ( Well + Good May 2021)

Yields 4 servings


1 Tbsp vegetable oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 onion, chopped

1 vegetable bouillon cube

1 tsp Italian spice mix

1/2 tsp chili flakes

10.5 oz dry spaghetti noodles

3 cups tomato sauce

2 cups water

2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

1&1/2 cups cooked brown lentils

1/2 cup green olives, sliced or chopped

1/3 cup sun-dried tomato in oil, drained from a jar, chopped

1 Tbsp capers

2 cups fresh spinach

  1.  Add the oil to a large pot on medium high heat.  When hot, add the garlic, onion, bouillon cube, Italian seasoning and red chili pepper flakes, sauteeing for two to three minutes.  Add splashes of water as needed to deglaze the pot.  Then, add the pasta, pasta sauce, water, cherry tomatoes, lentils, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and capers.
  2. Bring to a gentle simmer and partially cover with a lid.  Cook for 10 to 15 minutes on medium heat until pasta is al dente.  Check on it every few minutes to stir and ensure the bottom of the pot does not burn.
  3. When the pasta is al dente, add the spinach and stir, cooking for an additional minute before removing the pot from the heat.
  4. Serve it generously into bowls, top with some freshly sliced basil leaves, and enjoy!

Orzo With Vegetables

1 x 16 oz package broccoli florets

4.5 Tbsp EVOO, divided

2 tsp salt, divided

1 pint snacking tomatoes

1 small white onion, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tsp pepper

3.5 Cups cooked orzo

3/4 cup lemon and olive oil vinaigrette

  1.  Preheat over to 425 degrees F.
  2. On large baking sheet, toss broccoli with 3 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp salt. Roast 15 minutes. Remove from oven, add tomatoes and drizzle with 1/2 Tbsp oil. Return to oven and roast 8 minutes.
  3. Heat large saute pan over medium heat. Add remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil and onion, cook 2 minutes. Add garlic; cook 1 minute.  Add chickpeas; cook 5 minutes. Season with 1 tsp pepper and remaining 1 tsp salt.  Chickpeas should be browned and crisp on edges.
  4. In large mixing bowl, combine cooked orzo, broccoli, tomatoes, chickpea mixture and vinaigrette. Season with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Serve immediately, refrigerating any leftovers.

(Kroger www.PrivateSelection.com March 2021)

Bunny Deviled Eggs – Happy Easter!

24 deviled eggs

3-4 medium radishes, sliced

3-5 black olives, pitted

1 bunch chives, sliced into 1/2 inch strips

  1. Prepare your favorite deviled egg recipe
  2. Cut radish slices in half to create ears. Snip one of the corners off for the nose – placing the snipped side into deviled filling
  3. Use bits of black olives to form eyes and chive segments to make whiskers
  4. Deviled eggs may be made, wrapped and refrigerated up to 4 hours in advance

(Kroger mymagazine.us March 2021)

Roasted Avocado Hummus

From Magnolia Journal Issue 18, 2021

Roasted Avocado Hummus

Prep: 10 minutes Roast: 15 minutes

1 medium just-ripe avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, cubed

3 cloves garlic, lightly smashed

3 Tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)

15 oz can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves

2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp tahini (sesame seed paste)

1/2 tsp salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Crostini or pita chips

  1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place avocado and garlic on a small foil-lined baking pan.  Drizzle with 1&1/2 tsp of EVOO, toss to coat. Roast 15 minutes or until avocado is softened and garlic is roasted.
  2. Combine roasted avocado and garlic, beans, basil, the remaining EVOO, the lemon juice, tahini, and salt in a food processor.  Process until smooth.
  3. Transfer hummus to a bowl. Sprinkle with pepper and, if desired, additional basil leaves.  Serve with  crostini or pita chips.

Makes 1&1/2 cups


Honey – Nature’s Sweetheart

Honey – Nature’s Sweetheart
·      Raw honey straight from the hive (filtered or unfiltered forms)
·      Regular honey pasteurized, with added sugars
·      Pure honey pasteurized, no added sugar/ingredients
·      Manuka honey from the manuka bush
·      Forest honey (bees feed on tree honeydew instead of flower nectar)
·      Acacia honey (bees feed on flowers of black locust tree)
·      Organic honey (raw or regular)
·      Medical grade honey (topical therapeutic)
Raw honey contains water, bee pollen (26 amino acids), bee propolis (resin, oil and wax, pollen, amino acids, minerals, sugars, vitamin B, vitamin C and vitamin E, aromatic compounds), antioxidants (flavonoids), enzymes (diastase, invertase, glucose oxidase), minerals (calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium zinc), and vitamins (pantothenic acid, niacin, riboflavin).
Raw honey may contain a few more antioxidants and enzymes than pasteurized honey. Pasteurization is necessary to kill any yeast, but may reduce raw honey’s antibacterial action, wound healing benefits, antioxidant value, and anti-inflammatory effects. Don’t microwave raw honey or put it directly in boiling water to dissolve crystals that form over time as this may destroy some of its nutrient value. Organic honey is available as raw or regular, as some manufacturers pasteurize their organic honey.
Honey is a carbohydrate that contains 30% glucose and 40% fructose, both of which when broken down by the body may cause spikes in our blood sugar levels. Pure honey has a glycemic index of 58. The type of flowers that bees pollinate to make the honey determine its taste, color, antioxidant and vitamin content. One tablespoonful honey contains 64 calories.
Honey may be a good natural alternative for treating upper respiratory tract infections (Abuelgasim.  BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine August 18, 2020). In this review of 14 studies mostly in children and a few adults with URIs, authors concluded raw honey used to coat the throat was superior to usual care (e.g., dextromethorphan) for improving cough severity, cough frequency, or both.
Honey has a low pH level (acidic) that may kill harmful bacteria in wounds.  As seen in vitro studies, topical therapeutic (medical grade) honey may inhibit bacterial growth due to its high sugar content, acid pH, hydrogen peroxide production within the wound to aid in debridement, and moisture.  Subrahmanyam described a prospective randomized clinical and histological study of burn wound healing in two groups of 25 patients assigned to either topical therapeutic honey or topical silver sulfadiazine.  In the honey treated group, 84% of patients demonstrated epithelialization by day seven, and all of them demonstrated satisfactory wound healing by day twenty one. In the silver sulfadiazine treated group, epithelialization was present by day seven for 72% of patients and by day 21 for 84% of patients.  Regarding histological evidence of wound healing, 80% of patients treated with honey showed wound improvement by day seven compared to 52% of silver sulfadiazine treated patients by day seven. These outcomes continued to improve for both groups up to 21 days of treatment.
Medical grade honey should only be applied with the advice and consent of a physician.  Bacterial susceptibility varies based on length of topical exposure to therapeutic honey.  It is prudent to closely monitor the use of therapeutic honey in patients with all wounds, especially diabetic ulcers due to risk of infection.  Before therapeutic honey is used on an open wound, the wound should be swabbed for bacteria culture and sensitivity to honey determined before treatment if necessary. 
Not all food grade honey is sterile, and Clostridium botulinum can survive in honey, thereby causing a risk of wound botulism when applied to the wound.  Food-grade honey should not be used for wound healing.  Clinicians should consult the honey manufacturer to find out more about the product before applying honey to an open wound.
Using/taking honey by any route of administration is contraindicated in individuals allergic to honey or pollens contained therein, and in children less than one year of age (Abell. Honey for upper respiratory tract infections. Pharmacy Today November 2020). Individuals with diabetes mellitus should monitor oral honey consumption and its effect on their blood sugar levels.
Honey is one alternative to table sugar or agave for sweetening effects, nutritional value, and potential medicinal use. Please consult with your physician for an accurate diagnosis and direction on how best to use honey for any medicinal purposes.
Lusby PE. Honey: a potent agent for wound healing? J WOCN 2002;29:295-300.
Subrahmanyam M. A prospective randomized clinical and histological study of superficial burn wound healing with honey and silver sulfadiazine. Urns 1998;24:157-161.
Cooper R, Wigley P, Burton NF. Susceptibility of multi-resistant strains of Burkholderia cepacia to honey. Lett Appl Microbiol 2000;31:20-24.
Olaitan PB. Honey: a reservoir for microorganisms and an inhibitory agent for microbes. African Health Sci 2007;7:159-165.
Boukraa L. Honey use in burn management: potentials and limitations. Forsch Komplementmed 2010;17:74-80.

Low Carbohydrate Diets

Low carbohydrate diets (~130 grams carbs/day) are popular when attempting to burn off excess fat and lose weight.  Carbohydrates include pasta, bread, cous-cous, potatoes, rice, cakes, cookies, and sugary foods.  Eliminating all carbohydrates from our diets is not safe, especially is one works out on a regular basis.

Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose (sugar).  Excess glucose is stored in the muscle and liver as glycogen or, with the help of insulin, converted into fatty acids, and stored as fat in adipose tissue.

If we don’t eat enough complex carbohydrates we may not take in enough fiber and can become constipated.  Our brains need glucose!  Carbohydrates supply energy.

Check with your primary care physician about an appropriate weight loss strategy for your health needs. If you are trying to lose weight,  exercise portion control and keep eating whole-grain carbs along with more veggies, beans, nuts, and seeds.    As always, be sure to drink at least 2 liters of water daily to stay well hydrated.