Chapter 3-1 of Healing Foods by Walter Last


This chapter provides information about special foods and vital nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes, as well as basic remedies including herbs and homeopathics.

The more we use special health Foods, and adopt a high-quality diet, the less we need to know about individual nutrients, and vice versa. Unfortunately, most individuals presently have a less than ideal diet, and some knowledge about nutrients can help to avoid or correct imbalances and deficiencies. Furthermore, many nutrients are now used in very high doses, essentially as remedies, to treat various diseases. When used in this way, detailed knowledge is important to achieve the desired effect without exposing yourself to unnecessary danger.

While there are dangers with what I call “self-healing”, and health authorities call “self-medication”, these are infinitely smaller than those posed by prescription drugs. I believe there is less long-term harm in using a nutrient incorrectly than a prescription drug correctly. It is rare to encounter serious health damage from using nutrients, even in very high doses, while medical drugs are stated to be the third-highest cause of death in the US.

Nevertheless, I do not endorse the use of high-potency nutrients without a proper understanding of any benefits and dangers, and I do not endorse high-potency supplements as a substitute for a healthy lifestyle, which is the way that they are commonly used. My main emphasis is on a healthy lifestyle, which in most cases will remove the need for high-potency supplements, but if you feel that you do need some, then you will find suitable information in this chapter.  


Learn about the health-giving properties of pollen, purple foods, sprouted seeds and others


Various foods have general healing qualities, or help to overcome specific health problems. Foods high in enzymes and growth hormones improve our overall health. Sprouted seeds, bee pollen, grass juice and unheated lactic-acid fermented food fall in this category, as do fresh edible flowers, such as nasturtium, impatiens and (male) pumpkin flowers. While the stamen of pumpkin flowers that bears the pollen is somewhat bitter, flower petals are especially high in bioflavonoids, which help fight and prevent allergies and inflammations.

Pollen is one of the best foods or supplements available, a raw food rich in enzymes and hormones in addition to vitamins and minerals. You may take one to three teaspoonfuls several times daily or use the lot to flavor your freshly pressed vegetable or grass juice. To make it easier to digest, soak the pollen in liquid for some time before ingestion. Alternatively, you may use a coffee grinder to make it into a powder. It is also a good addition to yogurt or other food to be fermented.

Foods high in sulfur may be increased to improve detoxification. Such foods include raw egg yolk, onion, horseradish, watercress, turnip or other raw food of the cabbage family. Most of these are also helpful in treating digestive ulcers; horseradish can be used to help treat mucus complaints. A supplement high in organic sulfur is MSM.

Bananas are good energy providers for those with a weak digestion. However, overripe Cavendish bananas (this is the most common variety) often cause digestive discomfort or allergies in sensitive individuals. This problem is commonly caused by over-gassing the bananas shortly before sale with ethylene gas to make them ripen very quickly. Ladyfinger bananas or other small varieties do not normally cause problems. Sensitive individuals generally should avoid overripe fruit. Acid citrus fruits are excellent for improving liver functions, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, cholesterol and fat levels in insensitive individuals.

Jerusalem artichokes in frequent small quantities are beneficial for kidney functions and for those with diabetes. Eat about one the size of an egg every other day. Store Jerusalem artichokes in soil, not in the refrigerator. Also eating (organic) liver often helps those with diabetes and so does eating avocados and green beans. Fruit and vegetables grown in your own area are generally more health-giving than those grown far away.

Sprouted Seeds

Sprouted seeds and young shoots such as wheat grass provide a higher degree of vitality and rejuvenation than other foods. I recommend sprouted seeds as a mainstay of a good diet. Most commonly used for sprouting are legumes such as lentils, peas, mung beans, fenugreek and chickpeas but also almonds, peanuts and sunflower kernels may be spouted. Sunflower and buckwheat seeds make a tasty salad when grown in seed boxes and cut close to the soil when 5-10 cm/2-4 inches high.

Alfalfa sprouts are high in a detergent-like saponin that may damage the intestinal wall in sensitive individuals. They have been shown to aggravate autoimmune diseases and possibly cancer. For others they may be a good food after allergy testing. Alfalfa sprouts should be exposed to light after leaves have emerged while other sprouts usually taste better before leaves develop. Alfalfa seeds easily rot in wet conditions. They are best sprouted in an upturned jar covered with muslin held in place with a strong rubber.

It is important to use seeds with a high germination power. Buy a small quantity for testing and if they sprout well buy a larger quantity from the same source and keep them in an airtight container. Lentils and mung beans are easy to start with. Just soak the seeds overnight and then rinse several times a day, drain well, spread out lightly and keep covered. Wash well again just before eating to remove any bacteria and fungi. If seeds are of poor quality and start rotting easily, use them when the germs just start to appear, otherwise wait until they are up to one inch long, which is usually within three days. Different compatible seeds may be germinated together.

Mung beans may retain hard pieces after soaking that can damage the teeth. This can be avoided by pouring some boiling water over the seeds initially and letting them soak in the cooling water. Peas and lentils, on the other hand, like it cool and sprouts easily deteriorate in hot conditions. Sprouted seeds may be refrigerated in a closed container after they have reached the desired length. Individuals who are rather sensitive to fungi and microbes may wash sprouted seeds in diluted hydrogen peroxide shortly before use. If you have difficulty chewing or if sprouted seeds cause much wind, try using them as part of your fresh juice.

If seeds do not sprout well, the cause may be as follows:

·        Seeds may not be not viable - too old or poor storage

·        Temperature during sprouting is too high or too low

·        Seeds are kept too dry or too wet during sprouting

     Experiment and adjust conditions.


Fermented Food

The use of fermented food was widespread in former centuries. Well-known are yogurt, cheese, cottage cheese, beer, cider and cider vinegar, pickles, miso, sauerkraut and sourdough bread.

The advantages of fermenting are several:

·        Minerals can be more easily absorbed

·        Enzyme inhibitors and other anti-nutrients are eliminated

·        The amount of vitamins and enzyme is greatly increased

·        It preserves the food and can introduce delicious flavors

·        The food becomes much more easily digestible, being essentially a predigested food, suitable for anyone with a weak digestive system

However, there can be one drawback: some individuals are very sensitive to fermented products and should avoid fermented foods.


Today most traditionally fermented foods are commercially made by purely chemical means, for example, vinegar, pickles, cheese and cottage cheese, baking products, and some beer and wine substitutes. This disuse of the fermentation process in preparing our staple foods is a contributing factor in the cause of chronic diseases.

In all fermentation it is important that a desirable strain of bacteria develops. This depends on the bacteria already present or introduced, as well as on the temperature during fermentation. Basically we want lactic-acid bacteria that convert glucose into lactic acid. In order to ensure the development of pure bacterial cultures, the food is often heat-treated and then inoculated with the desired strain. However, I believe the product is nutritionally superior if it has not been heat-treated.

Grains such as rye, oats, millet, wheat, brown rice, and vegetables such as cabbage are best fermented at a warm room temperature, while cultures containing yogurt or acidophilus bacteria do better between 300C and 400C (850 and 1050 F).

There is a distinction between the fermentation of yeast and that of lactic acid bacteria. Yeast fermentation is used in traditionally made beer, wine and bread. Due to the overuse of antibiotics in recent decades, many individuals are now allergic or sensitive to yeast. Therefore it is advisable for sensitive individuals to restrict yeast products and for others to abstain periodically or after antibiotic treatment and test for incompatibility.

When fermentation is uncontrolled, as it is for instance when making sauerkraut or rejuvelac (water in which grains have been soaked for several days), a mixture of lactic-acid bacteria and yeast usually develops. These products are not a problem for many, but sensitive individuals need to watch out and may have to avoid them.

In making yogurt, sour milk, sour cream and cheeses the natural way, lactic-acid fermentation is the preferred method and still widely used. However, due to the mucus-forming potential of lactose, these products should be used with caution, especially if made from cow's milk. The curd causes less of a problem than the whey and goat's milk less than cow's milk. The whey contains most of the lactose. Most commercial, fermented milk products are heat-treated and often very high in lactose, best avoided them.

On the other hand, as a health food seed cheese or seed yogurt may be used. This is commonly made from oily seeds such as nuts, almonds or sunflower kernels by adding acidophilus culture to the soaked and blended seeds. Washing the seeds in diluted hydrogen peroxide before blending can minimize contamination of the seed cheese with yeast, also adding a large amount of starter helps and letting it ferment for only a short period. The same applies to sourdough baking, which is also recommended.

Do not use strongly fermenting products that have become very sour. You may discard the whey and wash the curd to make it acceptable. Nevertheless, do not use any fermented food that has a foul smell or taste. The water used for fermentation should be free of chlorine and fluoride, as these will poison the enzymes.

Fermenting or fermented products should not be kept in metal containers nor should a metal spoon be left immersed in the food as this increases our exposure to toxic metals. Plastic containers are not recommended for fermenting either. Fermented foods may be refrigerated for a week or two. Part of the former batch may be used as a starter for a new lot but beware of contamination with yeast. It is especially important to eat fermented foods during and after a course of antibiotics but also when one has cancer or another degenerative disease.

Purple Food

The color pigment in purple foods belongs to the large group of bio-active natural chemicals called bioflavonoids. We find them as red, blue and purple pigments in a wide range of flowers, fruits and vegetables but also in the pulp of citrus fruit. Two well-known bioflavonoids are rutin and quercetin.

Another important nutrient group is the carotenoids that form the yellow, orange and red colors in flowers and fruits. Best known is beta-carotene. Even more important for healthy eyes and especially to protect the retina to prevent blindness from macular degeneration are lutein and zeaxanthin. They are especially found in spinach, lettuce, broccoli, peas and corn. Lycopene appears to protect the health of the prostate gland. Studies also found it protective against exercise-induced asthma. You can find it in red-hued fruit and vegetables, such as tomatoes, pink grapefruit, guavas, papaya and watermelon.

If you have the opportunity, frequently snack some flower petals or put them through the juicer. Suitable are especially the petals of big (male) pumpkin flowers or the whole flowers of impatiens or nasturtium, basically all flowers of edible vegetables may be used.

The pigments of purple foods are especially highly unsaturated and therefore are strong antioxidants. One important group of purple pigments is the anthocyanins and proanthocyanins or PAC's. When many individual anthocyanin molecules are linked together they are also called oligo-proanthocyanins or OPC's. One such compound that is commercially extracted from pine bark is sold as pygnogenol. A cheaper product with similar qualities is sold as grape seed extract.

The OPC's have lost their purple color but this may be restored when they are broken down into their individual components in the body. In nature these anthocyanins are bound to different sugars and they are then called anthocyanidins. During digestion the sugars are split off to release the anthocyanins for absorption. The term 'purple foods' as used here includes all foods that yield purple juice when cooked or pressed with skin but that does not include eggplant.

The color of black/purple/red grapes, blackberries, blueberries, red wine and red cabbage consists of anthocyanins, the individual molecules and active form of PACs. The pigment of red beet belongs to a subgroup of anthocyanins, the betacyanins. Both groups have strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and improve the elasticity of blood vessels and skin. PACs, anthocyanins and betacyanins also help to restore normal oxidative metabolism or cell respiration.

With this, they are important not only for normalizing cancer cells but also with chronic fatigue and general lack of energy by taking the role of oxygen as electron acceptors. Furthermore, purple foods in sufficient amounts can improve the elasticity of skin and blood vessels. With this and in combination with other bioflavonoids they are beneficial with various diseases such as allergies, inflammation, infections, parasites, cancer, liver disease, vascular diseases, thrombosis (blood clotting), chemical toxicity and coronary artery disease.

Purple foods should generally be eaten with the skin as this is usually most strongly colored. However, with purple onions the outer skins are not directly edible and you may utilize these as a tea. Grapes should be well rinsed before eating to remove fungi or molds. Sensitive individuals and especially those with Candida may find it preferable in addition to soak the grapes for a while with some added hydrogen peroxide. When grapes are not in season, the juice of black grapes has reportedly been used with good success in the treatment of cancer. For this a 750 ml/24 oz. bottle of dark grape juice should be sipped spaced out during the morning with no other food before lunch, for the original report see www.quantumbalancing/grape.htm.

Red Beet or beetroot is the best purple vegetable. The purple pigment has been shown to increase and normalize cell respiration - the oxygen-based energy production within cells. Thus beetroot is one of the key foods in preventing as well as curing cancer. It is equally important in the treatment of other degenerative diseases such as chronic fatigue syndrome that are all characterized by reduced cell respiration.

The active ingredient in red beet is called betacyanin with two carbonyl groups (C=0-). When cellular energy is produced through the oxidation of nutrients, electrons and hydrogen ions are transferred onto the inhaled oxygen to produce water and energy. In cancer cells and with chronic fatigue the respiratory enzymes that accomplish this transfer have been diminished or destroyed. The color pigment in beetroot (and other purple food) strongly binds electrons and hydrogen and with this can reactivate the production of cellular oxidative energy. Seeger and others have shown that the respiration of cancer cells can be completely normalized by a combination of red beet, raw fermented food and vitamin C. The multiplication of cancer cells will thus stop, and tumors become non-virulent. Clinical tests using red beet with cancer patients revealed that often tumors regressed and disappeared.

In the original cancer therapy with red beet 1 Kg have been used daily. However, if used together with other purple food less may be needed, as for instance when combining red beet with dark grapes or dark grape juice.

Use plenty of red beets grated in salads, as juice and cooked; also the residue from juicing may be cooked. Occasionally a small beet may leave an acrid aftertaste. Taste suspect beets before making salads or juice; cooking them is fine, and beet tops may be cooked also. Tinned beet has lost most of its pigments and is of little value.

Red beet may be available only seasonally. You may store a larger quantity in moist sand. Keep the tops exposed in a cool, shaded place with just enough moisture to prevent drying out. After a good root system has developed you may also let them continue to grow in a sandy and well-drained soil, neither too wet nor too dry to avoid rotting or mold development; check frequently. Alternatively, you may stock up on beetroot juice by freezing it.

Raw Egg

Fresh raw eggs, genuinely free-range from hens fed on greens and grains, have health-giving and healing properties. However, egg allergy is widespread and with habitual consumption eggs should be tested. Raw egg yolk does not raise the cholesterol level; it is high in sulfur compounds that strengthen connective tissue and detoxify the liver.

Fresh raw egg yolk has long been known to enhance or rejuvenate sexual energies that are required not only for having sex, but more importantly for creative activity in general and for physical fitness. Very fresh, raw, beaten egg white, on the other hand, has germicidal properties.

The cell walls of lymphocytes (white blood cells) become more rigid with aging, AIDS and viral infections, mainly due to increased cholesterol levels in cell walls. Lipids extracted from raw egg yolk have been reported to normalize rigid cell walls and fully restore immune functions. This has led to great improvements in AIDS patients treated with egg-yolk lipids.

Linseed and Sulfur-rich Food

Together with fish oils, linseed or flaxseed oil is our best source of the essential omega-3 fatty acids. These polyunsaturated fatty acids are important for brain and nerve functions, for the fluidity of cell membranes and for the oxidative cellular energy production. Of great importance for this energy production are lipoproteins formed from essential fatty acids and sulfur-proteins (taurine, cysteine, methionine). These are concentrated in active tissue such as glands, liver, brain, muscles and skin and are needed for oxidative energy production or cellular respiration.

Key enzymes formed from cysteine and essential fatty acids are deficient in individuals with degenerative diseases such as cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes and many skin diseases as well as heart, liver and kidney degeneration. These and other diseases have reportedly been cured with high intakes of high-quality linseed oil and sulfur-rich foods.

Linseed oil is very sensitive to oxidation and special precautions are needed to obtain and retain a non-rancid product. The linseed or flaxseed oil must be fresh when purchased, not more than a few months old and produced at low temperatures without light and oxygen, stored in a cool and dark place, and refrigerated before and after opening. It should never be heated.

High quality linseed oil is rather expensive and normally it will be sufficient and much cheaper to use freshly ground whole linseed instead of or in addition to the oil. Linseed contains 35% linseed oil. You may use several tablespoonfuls a day. This also has a mildly laxative effect. Best grind it fresh in a coffee grinder. Alternatively use a blender, screen it through a strainer and add the coarse residue to the blender again with the next lot.

Ground linseed may be refrigerated for a few days but is better stored in the freezer. For individuals with malabsorption problems and for those wanting to improve their skin, linseed oil may also be rubbed into parts of the skin that are protected from the sun. In addition, I recommend unheated extra virgin olive oil internally as well as on the skin. This is a good source of squalene, a strong antioxidant that is also important for our energy production and a key ingredient for the healing properties of shark liver oil.

The main sulfur amino acids are L-cysteine and L-methionine; eggs are a good source of these but they can easily be produced from other sulfur-rich food such as onions. The best supplement form of organic sulfur is MSM. In addition to linseed oil, in her famous cancer therapy Dr Budwig recommends quark made from raw fermented skim milk as the main source of these sulfur amino acids. However, according to the blood group diet this may only be suitable for individuals with the blood groups B or AB.

As supplements do not use the D,L(or d,l)-forms of cysteine or methionine, only the natural L-forms. While cysteine is very important for detoxification and energy production, new research shows that it may also act as a neurotransmitter in the brain and high doses can create an imbalance in the brain of susceptible individuals. Therefore, it is generally best to obtain it or synthesize it from sulfur-rich food. High doses of methionine, on the other hand, can cause a problem in individuals who are deficient in vitamin B6. Problems can be avoided by supplementing it together with vitamin B6.


For the improvement or maintenance of good health it is desirable to have two or three bowel movements daily. A better lifestyle and raw food will do much to achieve this goal, but initially it may be necessary to include some laxative foods as well.

BRAN A mild laxative; however, it accentuates mineral deficiencies. Wheat bran is not suitable for anyone who is sensitive to wheat. I do not recommend wheat bran but you may experiment with rice bran, provided that you take trace mineral supplements with bran-free meals.

FRESHLY FERMENTED FOODS - These often have a strong laxative action.

ISOTONIC FLUSH - Add 9 g of salt (approximately 1 heaped teaspoonful) to 1 liter of water or use 1 cup of seawater diluted with 3 cups of fresh water. Drink this within a few minutes on an empty stomach, and take no food or other drink for the following 30 minutes. This is excellent for cleaning the whole of the gastro-intestinal tract, but it should not be used if a severely restricted intake of sodium is indicated for other conditions.

LINSEED - Mildly laxative and soothing for irritated bowels. Preferably use ground linseed, otherwise one tablespoon of dry seeds with water some time before meals and at bedtime; swallow whole. If the intestines are irritated (white inner irises), use fenugreek or pure slippery-elm powder with linseed.

MAGNESIUM SALTS - Take 1 tablespoon of Epsom salts with water. Milk of magnesia may be neutralized with ascorbic acid, alternatively try increasing amounts of magnesium chloride.

MOLASSES- Use on its own or with yeast in warm water.

MUSTARD SEEDS - Take ˝ teaspoon of whole dry seeds with water twice daily, some time before a meal; do not chew. This helps to strengthen bowel functions and overcome gas formation. Continue for two months or as required. Do not use mustard seeds if the intestines are irritated.

PRUNES - May be taken raw, soaked or cooked.

PSYLLIUM HULLS – are preferable to bran. Stir a teaspoonful in a large glass of water and drink immediately about 30 minutes before meals as often as required for either laxative action or weight reduction.

SENNA - Pods, powder or leaves may be added to herb teas.

URINE - Drinking a cupful of your diluted morning urine has a good laxative effect.

WATER - Drinking a large quantity of water within a short period will cause part of it to rinse the bowels. Take 2 large glassfuls or more of (warm) water before breakfast.


·        Special Health Foods

·        Vitamins

·        Minerals

·        Amino Acids

·        Digestive Enzymes

·        Supplements

·        Herbs