Probiotics…Wanted Dead or Alive

The “Wanted dead or alive?” debate rages on in the world of probiotics and microbiome research. Functional medicine MD’s like myself already apply microbiome principles in the care of our patients. On the other hand, many detractors in conventional medicine claim that the probiotics we swallow in capsules either cross the threshold of our mouths already dead or die in our stomachs.

New Flu Treatment: Ketogenic Diet

I have said a million times that there is no perfect diet for everyone. Each person begins life wired differently, and individual persons need individualized nutrition. For that reason, I have not jumped on the ketogenic bandwagon like many who sound like it fixes everything. However, I have to admit this research is pretty intriguing.

Pass the Tea for Your Brain Health


          Honestly, this is not shocking.  Multiple studies have already revealed a list of benefits from tea drinking.  In this case, researchers from the National University of Singapore reported what appear to be beneficial structural changes in the brain of human subjects who drink tea on a near daily basis.  Prior studies had focused on neuropsychological testing but not actual structural or functional imaging techniques. 

Vitamin D and Teenage Woes

As with many areas of functional nutrition, vitamin D stirs up a lot of controversy.  Despite numerous studies showing its benefits, many still try to malign its character and urge patients to avoid it.  The current study adds further support for the maintenance of adequate vitamin D throughout life as it looked at vitamin D levels in childhood having effects in the later adolescent years. 

Juice for a Baby’s Brain

Pediatricians rightfully urge parents to limit the intake of sugary drinks to small children (even if the doctor’s themselves indulge in their own soft drinks).  On the other hand, this research may encourage doctors to recommend some pomegranate juice daily for expecting mothers whose babies are not growing fast enough.  Researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital carried a small study suggesting benefits for pregnancies diagnosed with Intrauterine Growth Retardation (IUGR).

Stem Cells Nourished by Fat and Ketones

The pros and cons of ketogenic diets alternate turns in the lime-light of scientific headlines.  One study purports the wonders of ketogenesis (fat burning metabolism) while the next smears it as faddish and harmful.  At Sanctuary we always answer “yes” and “no” when asked about paleo and keto diets for the simple reason that such a diet is not a perfect fit for everyone. 

Chicken Tikki Masala

Serves 3



2 large boneless and skinless chicken breasts diced, about 1.5 pounds

1 cup plain full-fat yogurt or compliant plant-based yogurt if dairy-free

1 teaspoons turmeric

2 teaspoons garam masala

1 tablespoon lemon juice (about half a lemon)

2 teaspoons black pepper

1/4 teaspoon dried ginger



4 tablespoons ghee or butter (1/4 cup)

1 medium white onion diced

1-2 serrano chiles minced

5 garlic cloves minced

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ginger grated

3 1/2 teaspoons garam masala

1 teaspoon paprika

1 15-ounce can tomato sauce

1 green bell pepper deseeded and sliced into strips

1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves

lots of salt to taste

2 cups coconut cream or full-fat coconut milk,