How to avoid a toxic summer

There are a lot of toxic ingredients in each of our lives but there is one ingredient that is very prevalent during summer time. With the event of summer, we begin to approach life a little bit easier.  Snacks, picnics, sport activities, extra convenience food, chilled beverages, etc. find their way into our homes.  Summer heat, lethargy all help us to rationalize our actions.  (After all it’s too hot to cook in the kitchen, take out  or delivery is easier.)

I can understand the emotions behind the choices but there is one ingredient that is pretty much deadly that I would encourage you to get completely out of your diet, regardless of the season.

I am talking about hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils.  They cause problems like heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and can add to an extra pounds for a weight burden that can lead to diabetes, arthritis  and low energy.

Many food companies put these cheap oils in their food.  Most individuals do not realize how very dangerous they are to their health and so don’t bother to read labels. Salad dressings, margarine, French Fries, corn dogs, fried chicken, doughnuts, chips, and fast foods can be LOADED with toxic hydrogenated oils. WARNING: stay away from them!

You can make French Fries at home by slicing potatoes, add some seasoning and bake them in the oven.

There are wonderful salad dressing recipes that are healthy and tasty.  Here is one of my favorites.

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar

1 clove garlic, pressed

1 pinch of dried basil

1 pinch of dried oregano

Mix all ingredients together, use 1 Tablespoon per salad


Another summer snack my family likes is baked asparagus.


On a cookie sheet spread out fresh asparagus spears.  Put enough water in the cookie sheet to wet the bottom of the pan and the asparagus.  Don’t submerge the asparagus in the water.  Place pan under your broiler for 3-5 minutes on high setting.  Remember to lower the pan a little bit under the broiler so that the asparagus doesn’t burn.  You want your asparagus to still be crunchy, not mushy.  Take out of the oven and drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the asparagus with a little natural sea salt.  I like Redmond brand  Real Salt®

Top off with freshly ground parmesan cheese.  You have a wonderful snack, vegetable for a meal, or additional ingredient for a salad, or an entrée for entertainment.


Have a healthy, happy, summer,

Dr. Janeel Henderson