Is Stewed Apple the Perfect Functional Food for a Dysfunctional Gut?

Perfect Functional Food?!

This latest report suggest that Stewed Apple is the Perfect Functional Food for helping heal the gut. I received this information from Dr Mark Donohoe in NSW, Australia, and now pass it on to you too. It’s the only treatment I’m trying at the moment because I’ve stopped taking everything including all supplements and probiotics because they make me ill. I am waiting for a new probiotic (from the same family Probiotic 45 that I took in 2012 to heal my malfunctioning gut. Apart from eggs, I don’t have food allergies, but there’s a heap of foods that I can’t tolerate. These make sensitivities to chemicals worse, especially mould exposure via food.


So this is what I’m doing: Eating one and half stewed apples in cinnamon and water; I do this once a day. I, or Dan mostly, cooks this outside on the hot plate for ages. The aromatic compound of cinnamon would inflame my head and sinus area if we did it in the house. Usually, if I eat cinnamon, my nose and face area hurt, sometimes throbbing if I’ve had mould exposure. But when it’s cooked for so long outside the cinnamon fades right into apples; it’s actually really yummy; ergo eating only a small amount seems stupid when I just want eat until I’m satisfied. But it’s just this one treatment that I’m trying at the moment so I’m trying to follow it to the letter. i.e., not eat the whole weeks worth as one meal! LOL.

Yes, I know, cooking fruit seems sacrilegious, right?

More from a proposal by Michael Ash BSc(Hons) DO, ND, F.DipION:

“Functional and pathological digestive tract conditions reflect a change in the relationship between the host microbiota and the mucosal immune and nervous system. These result in a wide range of distressing symptoms for which there are a variety of strategies, but no single intervention of consistent benefit. A component of patient care we sometimes overlook is that of the application of therapeutically relevant foods. For over 20 years I have been using a tried and tested formula that contemporary scientific research is now explaining why it has proven so effective for many patients. What do I mean by effective? – Changes in inflammatory markers, reduced need for anti-inflammatory medication, better gastrointestinal function, weight loss, mood uplift and change in colonic and small intestinal flora ratios with improved digestive and eliminative function fit the bill for me. In part these changes in symptoms are due to changes in dendritic cell (DC) regulatory function and increased oral tolerance which I hypothesise is due to increased regulatory T cell (Treg) promotion in the periphery especially in the GI Tract. This immune modulating food combination may be eaten for breakfast and dinner or as a meal substitute (no more than 1 substitution per day for many days) and as a quick and soothing snack.

Reactivity to Apples

I accept that there are patients that display reactivity to apples – the principle ingredient of this meal- and in part this is due to cross reactivity with birch pollen or latex allergy, and for others it relates to lipid transfer protein reactivity. For them, exchanging the apples for pears with all the other ingredients may offer a satisfactory alternative.”

Here is the full document:

Download (PDF, 510KB)



Functional Medicine @ Vitality Hub, Victoria, Australia: Gut Health

Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

My Triple Cook Chook Recipe!

(UPDATE, March 2017: As of 2013, my body began to reject animal products and by-products (hence falling for the ‘paleo’ bone broth/gut health myth), and by February 2015, I consciously chose to reject the idea of eating anyone who was murdered. I no longer believe that there is any such thing as ethically murdered animals–organic or not. And, I take back the idea that eating the whole animal without wasting any body parts is the right thing to do. I know many chronically ill people who have gone the Paleo way, just as I did, with the belief that recipes such as follows have gut healing properties. I reject the idea that our health is more important than any animals’ life; for we are animals ourselves. I would not eat my dog, nor would I eat a steak sliced out from your left buttock: it’s the same thing. I’ve already lost and alienated friends purely by my dietary choices and speaking up about animal liberation, so I really don’t care if I lose readers also.

I would love to delete this post because reading it fills me with shame. However, I do understand that we are all in different places along the journey to health and freedom. So I’m hoping that by leaving this recipe here, it can stand as a signpost showing my personal moral failings along the road towards veganism; as well as the successful health recovery that being vegan has bought my way. Please consider going vegan: the chicken below didn’t want to die. She had a family. And if any of her children were male, they would have been ground up in a meat grinder while still alive. It’s just wrong.)

To celebrate the fact that chicken is something I don’t have a food intolerance to, here is my ‘My Triple Cook Chook Recipe’ for cooked chicken pieces, chicken soup, and chicken stock. It’s very basic, consisting of two whole organic chickens, half a pot of filtered water, two table spoons of organic apple cider vinager (I use Mocks!), four large tablespoons of organic coconut oil, and some Macrobiotic sea salt. It makes three separate meals–four if you count the marrow-drained bones, I feed to my boxer dog, Bella.

In the vein of liberating animals, know this: The chickens in this pot died for me. For us. Perhaps they were intelligent chickens; or maybe, they ruled the roost because they were feminists fighting for equal rights against misogynist rooster counterparts? Or maybe, they were just lovely soft feathered creatures who loved to bathe in the dirt, and peck their way through life? As chickens should…

Two Organic Chickens

Two Organic Chickens

Speculative fictional aspects aside, mythology suggests past tribes ate the whole animal out of respect for the animal’s life. Today, how many people (I’m looking at you, KFC eaters!) eat meat without a whisper of a thought for how the animal lived or died? Or even if it lived: Eating it as if it’s just another commodity coming out of a wrapper, and made in a factory (farm)? Nowadays, there are many who think on a more ethical and healthy level about eating animals. And I am one. Here’s how I make the most of my expensive $30.00 organic (well loved) chickens:

  • First, I put the chooks in the pot, and cover with filtered water:
  • Then I add in two shots of Biodynamic vinager (during my elimination diet, the one I’m on right now, I skipped this step because I’ve not tested it yet!). (Apparently though, vinager helps draw out the nourishing marrow from the chook’s bones.)
Mocks Organic Apple Cider Vinager

Mocks Organic Apple Cider Vinager

  • It’s then cooked for 90 mins; any longer, and the chicken is too drained of flavour. I don’t scrape the fat of the top because I eat it! Mixed in with the soup, and in with the stock. (I know, how Palaeolithic of me!)
  • The chickens (which literally fall apart when grabbed with tongs to take them out), are then stripped bare, fatty skin pulled away, the flesh picked from their bones. Using kitchen scissors, I cut it all up, and mix it all together. (My daughter has always detested chicken veins; she’s got a real complex about them, so I make sure they are cut up too, and not visible 😉 )
Chicken Pieces. Yum!

Chicken Pieces. Yum!

  • Once this is done, I scoop four large tablespoons of organic Loving Earth Coconut Oil (to amp up the natural fat content!) over the top. Then, liberally, sprinkle over sea salt, and mix it well. (By now, I can’t help myself: I’m eating it, with oil running down my chin!)
Delectable Coconut Oil Melting into the Chicken Flesh

Delectable Coconut Oil Melting into the Chicken

Mmm… Chicken Pieces

Mmm… Chicken

  • I try to leave it to cool. Once it’s cold the chicken pieces go into glass containers with plastic snap lock lids. (I used to put the chicken into plastic snap lock bags (like in this photo) but have improved my system with glass instead—it’s much safer too!)
  • And then I put most of the containers (or bags (like in the photo)) into the freezer.
Yes, I've changed to glass, Mum!

Yes, Mum, I’ve changed to glass!

  • This makes about 16-18 serves of cooked chook, giving me, and my daughter, instant serves of protein to go with our meals! One serve makes an ultra fast, nourishing snack. I then throw all the bones, gizzards, and mushy skin back into the pot, and cook for another 90 mins. (Some people recommend that it’s better to cook them for longer, as the whole point of this process is to release the bone marrow into the water, which when eaten (or slurped, rather) supposedly, facilitates healing of the gut! For me, it soothes my stomach; and, additionally, it doesn’t cause me any symptoms. (It’s a winner, all over.)) If I cook it for longer, I have problems with any burning or overcooked food: my sinuses ache.
  • Once it’s finished, I leave it to cool, scrape the fat off, put it aside, and strain the nutritious liquid so I can remove all the bones and bits.
  • Then I put the bones asides for my dog, but not before removing the the gristly bits from them (these are attached to the joints) and chuck them back into the liquid: note these are important for women to eat.
  • I chuck the fat back in, reheat it so that it mixes in evenly—Did I mention that I cook this outside? No? Well, my sinuses and airways can’t handle breathing in the steam that’s vaporising the chicken and oil molecules out into the air; and if I’ve had any severe chemical exposures, I have to be careful not to breathe it in, as it just aggregates any sinus inflammation (hence wearing a mask sometimes when cooking). (Note to other sufferers who experience this type of pain from natural aromas; it goes away as the body heals! I know this as a fact. But it takes clean air, and avoidance of chemicals to heal this… (There could be more to this story of ‘Cooking, Sinuses and Pain’, hence testing for food sensitivities, so I’ll come back to this topic another day.)


  • Then, once cooled, it’s poured into rinsed out recycled Bonsoy containers; this is stock used for soups, but sometimes, especially when I’m sick, you know laying-on-the-couch-in-agony-too-sick-to-cook type of sick. It makes the perfect, tummy soothing, nourishing meal. (I just microwave it and slurp it up!)
Recycled Bonsoy Containers Filled with Chicken Stock ~ ready for freezing

Recycled Bonsoy Containers Filled with Chicken Stock ~ ready for freezing

  • The leftover liquid, I use to make pumpkin soup using one whole organic pumpkin, whatever veggies I have handy (usually zucchini and carrots) a can of full-fat coconut cream, a couple of handfuls of the delicious chicken and some more sea-salt!
My Homemade Pumpkin Soup

My Homemade Pumpkin Soup

This recipe is adapted from Sarah Wilson’s recipe, which you can find here. The first time I made it, even though I cooked it outside, it was a disaster. Perhaps, it was the onions, or the multitude of other ingredients that once upon a time I would have been fine with; or, perhaps, I cooked it too long, and it had that burnt, overcooked quality that it seems, only I can notice in foods (and take-away coffee): my sinuses start pulsating after eating/drinking it, then go on to ache, giving me, and any family members who introduce any odours into the house, grief. Anyway, it was not a total failure: my dog adored this batch of soup!

Below, is a part of the Sixty Minutes show about chickens that I watched last weekend (if this doesn’t make you switch to organic chickens (or at least (true) free range), then nothing will):

UPDATE: the truth about chickens and the industry who profit from their demise.

Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

Torture and Freedom

No, it’s not another post about human slavery, or street sex workers who are stuck in a cycle of society supported destruction, no, it’s a continuation of my post, which I did last week on the Torture of a Food Elimination Diet (I detest that word ‘diet’, ugh!). The torture was the deprivation of joy from my deep passion for drinking coffee and the instant feel-good gratification I get from eating chocolate. Slabs of it. Both brands seemed safe: Nature’s Cuppa Organic Instant Coffee, and Green and Black’s chocolate (the white, the  (40% cocoa) milk, and the (75% cocoa) dark delectable chocolate bars! And now, a couple of days into introducing new foods, after living on peaches, rice, and salmon (and nearly scratching my skin off after eating three pears and drinking a few glasses of pear juice mixed half/half with Perrier Mineral Water (another safe brand–and in a glass bottle), I feel good because, at the time of writing, my body is finally behaving itself. And I’m back on the coffee! :)

You know, I think that’s totally the key to this food testing: to eat a lot of the newly introduced, and suspected to be benign food, all at once during the testing process. That way, a clear reaction shows up. (Like the pears; don’t forget I live on fruit until lunchtime or longer.) The premise of my theory: if you think you are okay with a food because it’s a food you eat all the time, and during everyday chemical exposures, followed by symptoms, then eating it en masse, while on an Elimination Diet will definitely show clear symptoms, and it will be even clearer that these came from the food just tested, not a chemical exposure! I mean if you are exposed to chemicals every couple of days or so, like I am, and you get knocked flat from inhaling solvents and petrochemicals (which are everywhere–unless you live in practical isolation!). How do you tell? Like this: (Note: my doctor advised me of this.) Eat at least three servings. (I would’t even try this with foods I know are a problem, like peanuts or eggs–that would be silly. Except, I will try tomatoes again later; I love them, and miss them.)

Today’s introduced food is chicken, which is like Unicorn’s gift to me, as I love to eating it, and it has to be okay! And to share in this celebration, I’m going share my favourite recipe for cooking chicken, here!

Here’s my plan from my doctor, Dr Colin Little, Immunologist and Allergist (click to enlarge), here in Melbourne, Australia:

Food Elimination Diet

Food Elimination Diet Sheet

(Note: I’ve messed this diet up a tad, as budget constraints have not allowed me to shop for items on time (Gratefully, I don’t do my own shopping, but this also means I can’t have whatever I want when I want it, too. So, I’ve had to do the foods on a different schedule, but it’s the same thing still, really.)

I’m no longer feeling deprived, and the torture has turned out to be a positive thing (as bad things often do), because, you know what? My indigestion and tummy problems have faded off somewhere far, far away from here. It’s such a good thing; no, it’s an awesome thing. Now, or soon, there will be evidence of exactly what foods are causing my gut issues; and then, I will be closer to getting out of The Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities. It’s no fun not being able to poo. If I can’t poo my stomach hurts and I get bloated and I burp and I get indigestion and I vomit in my mouth I get grumpy and I can’t do up my jeans. I’m a fairly slim person, so being bloated is not an image thing. But putting on 3-4 kilos in a day (or overnight) if I eat the wrong foods is… but back to the ‘diet’ part: apples, chicken, salmon, sweet potato, all green vegetables, carrots, pumpkin, coffee and chocolate, with the occasional piece of cheese, these were all a part of my sustainable, non-stomach-irritating diet. Eating anything else, and I was stuck in the part of this labyrinth where there are no toilets because people don’t need them!

When I started this blog, I did it with the firm intention of starting the journey back out–and sharing it. I had done the impossible once before, so much so, I end up living a normal life, practically (painted my toenails and all!). Two years of constant sickness and chronic sinus pain later; I thought it couldn’t get any worse. And, then, to my deep, dark, gloomiest fearful stupefaction, I found myself deeper within this ‘Labyrinth’ and I really questioned not only what this blog was about, but my life also, as they both seemed like dead-ends. Developing intolerances to most foods, especially processed foods but many natural and healthy foods too, was just too much you see; what, along with the constant chemical onslaughts of relentless exposures: at home (except for one room), school, in my car, even outdoors around plants (my own beautiful bonsais and Hoya collections), walks out bush made me ill (damp soil, and terpenes released from grasses and foliage); I could not escape. Even in my own home, I had constant mould to battle, one of my neighbour’s onslaughts of fabric softeners, woodsmoke, my council mowing, I was lost, and for the first time, I had serious issues with my thinking; I literally was unable to even connect my thoughts. And that, as most of you can imagine, is a scary place for any writer, let alone an emerging one to be! And on top of all that, I was experiencing exclusion from many parts of my life because fragrance chemicals were blocking my access to them–even with family and friends (*that was a battle that I won!).


So (amongst a few other things in my life right now) the diet has given me this glimpse of freedom; therefore, it’s not really torture at all. It’s a process of gaining an awareness into what else needs to be done to heal myself, and create a better life!

Oh, and it’s my firm intention that after my next Diet Review… (Dr Little, after the initial seven days of eating safe (un-Palaeolithic like) foods, does a diet review, with another every 3-4 weeks after that, until food symptoms are under control. (The hard part of this: there are symptoms from chemical exposures; my solution has been to keep a food/symptom chemical exposure diary!)) … oh, and after my next diet review, I’m going to be eating chocolate again! It will be on the food to test list!

Page (1) of the original very basic diet

Page (1) of the original very basic diet

*Coming up: My post on ‘My University Challenge’, and, How to ‘Have a Fragrance Free Birthday Party (the results)’

More Bloggers Blog about Food Intolerances 

allergictolifemybattle: Rotation Diet

Celiac and Allergy Adventures: Alternative Medicine vs. Conventional Medicine: IgG Food Intolerance

More from Celiac and Allergy Adventures: What is Oral Allergy Syndrome

Sondamcschatter: The 10 worst toxins hidden in vitamins, supplements and health foods

Surviving the Food Allergy Apocalypse: Fabulous Friday Finds (And Great Recipes!)





Michellina Van Loder is a Professional Writer, Journalist and Blogger. This is where she shares her tales about trail blazing her way out of the Labyrinth of Chemical Sensitivities and Mould. This is also where you will find the latest Research on related topics.

Information, products and views presented by guest bloggers @The Labyrinth are not necessarily the same as those held by this blog's author, Michellina van Loder. Reviews are my own personal opinions (unless stated otherwise); and satire is used throughout personal posts. Any health topics discussed are not to be taken as medical advice. Seek out medical attention if needed and do your own research; however, you're welcome to use mine as a start.
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