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Iron Deficiency Anemia

This is the number one nutritional deficiency in the world and is easily explained. However, lets look at it from a very simple diagnostic perspective. If a patient is low in iron, then there are three basic reasons why that would occur. That person is either not consuming enough iron OR they are losing iron somewhere in their system (e.g. blood loss to the outside) OR they are not absorbing the iron that they are consuming. Pretty simple so far, right?

Looking at the first scenario, the reader can easily see that the lack of iron-containing foods in our diet could be a problem. Iron comes primarily from the consumption of meats, vegetables, and (we are told) grains. In fact, according to most nutritional charts, the majority (49% plus) of our iron comes from grains. Another fact is these grains are usually iron-fortified, as one will find on the labels of breads and cereals. I just have to ask a question right here: If this is so and we know that we eat so much bread and so many grain-based foods with iron-fortification, then why are we iron deficient. (Note: There is an exact parallel in the issue of osteoporosis, which is covered below.) Well return to this momentarily.

What about the second situation…blood loss? Yes, this does occur of course but not in the majority of cases of iron deficiency. It is, however, always a rule-out when working up a case of iron deficiency. Chronic bleeding in the gastrointestinal and urinary tracts should always be checked for in these cases.

The scenario I want to concentrate on is the third one: malabsorption of the iron that is consumed. Once again, most of you can skip right over this part because you have heard it all before. But briefly, the same duodenal damage previously discussed will lead to iron deficiency. Yes, the duodenum is responsible for iron absorption, just like it is for the uptake of calcium, iodine, and other nutrients. In fact, iron deficiency anemia is the big red flag for celiac disease. It was the ONLY laboratory/diagnostic work-up abnormality in my brothers case and he was deathly ill with celiac disease.

Iron deficiency should immediately make us take a long, hard look at what is going on in that duodenum. Once we understand that iron deficiency is only one of the potential problems in that individual, we can often build a case for duodenal damage as the source of the iron problem by looking for more and related clinical signs and symptoms. Do they have heart burn, intestinal problems, allergies, osteoporosis, thyroid problems (iodine) or other conditions covered on this site and in this section? There is a great chance that the iron deficient person does have other problems. I do this trick in the exam room all of the time…they tell me that they’re iron deficient and I tell them what else is wrong with them…and the client thinks I’m psychic. No, I say. I’m just describing my symptoms to you. I’ve had them all with my celiac disease.

So once again, we took the long way home but we now come to the point where I say that I believe that the most common cause of iron deficiency is the malabsorption of the iron that we DO consume. Surprise, surprise. But, it is so obvious, isn’t it? Ask yourself these questions: Why do they iron fortify the grains if we eat so many of them and they are a good source of iron? Why do many pediatric websites recommend that no cow milk be given until an iron-rich diet is begun? ( Hmmm…How did that one get in there?) Why would we be iron deficient if iron-fortified grains are such a good source of iron (making up 49% of our dietary source of iron) and wheat alone makes up 20-25% of the American diet? Hmmm….

The answer to all of these questions is because the gluten (the glue-ten) in the grains blocks the absorption of the iron in those grains. End of story. Well, it could be anyway. I like to pour it on thick… so I will. The bad news is that the gluten potentially blocks the absorption of the iron in anything that is consumed along with that grain, like the meat sitting on that bun. Oh oh. Now were getting somewhere. No wonder they fortify the grains with iron.

Wait ’til you read about osteoporosis. (Oh yeah. Why do they recommend avoiding cow milk until an iron-rich diet is begun? Because glutens evil twin, casein from cow milk, does the exact same thing. Now we also know why the countries that drink the most milk have the highest rate of osteoporosis, the second most common nutritional problem. That is an epidemiological fact.)

Dogtor J

Just Desserts

These are little tidbits of knowledge I’ve discovered or insights I’ve gained over the years while doing my in-depth studies.For example, did you know researchers have found that nearly 40% of the genetic information in our DNA is viral information? This explains what we call “genetic diseases” including familial and breed tendencies toward food intolerance (e.g. celiac disease), neurological disorders (e.g. epilepsy), and numerous cancers.

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Blogtor J

Welcome to the blog of the new New research into the origin of our medical woes has revealed something startling: As it turns out, we are our own worst enemy. Yes, the Pogo quote of yesteryear found in the title of this article is quite accurate when applied to our medical lives. We love to discuss those things that we call “causes” of diseases even though we often have little clue as to how these things really cause illness. Even medical professionals can have difficulty grasping the true cause-and-effect. But that is understandable once some insight is gained into the true nature of medical training.

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News Flash!

In this section, I will be placing links to the latest breaking news in the food world, including updates on the use of elimination diets to control disease, articles on pet food, the truth about GMO foods and more. I will do my best to balance the bad with the good, but try to remember: Much of this will seem like bad news but at least we know about it now…and can change it!


With some of these stories, I will include a link to a blog entry so that you can comment on the article. This idea came to me after reading the first entry, which is a news flash that made my blood boil.

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Shoot me an Email by clicking on the icon at the top of each page. Video testimonials are also welcome.

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Today’s Specials
The Simple Truth about Dog Food and Heart Disease The Epilepsy Diet Made Simple The Origin of Disease Lectins – The Missing Links Viruses – Friend or Foe? Pain, Pain Go Away
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Something to Chew On

What is the “Leaky Gut”?
The “leaky gut syndrome” is the root of many medical evils once the “big 4” induce it. Read how Italians have survived being a pasta-based society.

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Hip Dysplasia – “Genetics” vs. Diet

As misconceptions go, this is a high-priority item. Hip dysplasia is not what we were taught.

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Epilepsy and Diet

I have been studying “idiopathic epilepsy” extensively since April of 2000. Guess what? It’s not idiopathic anymore. A diet change can cure it!

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The Truth About Pet Food

Dogs and cats are carnivores yet most pet foods are grain-based. Knowing how to read a label is also very important. Does your pet food really have vegetables in it? Really???

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How to Control Epilepsy Naturally

I have been successfully treating pets with epilepsy using diet changes alone for nearly 10 years. The results have been astounding. This paper helps to summarize my findings and recommendations.

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We Have Met the Enemy and He is Us

This is the first blog placed on (6-24-07) and pretty much covers the gamut of topics – from heartburn to cancer – that are discussed on this Website. The bottom line? Viruses and bacteria are not the enemy. We are! The good news: We do have our health destinies in our own hands.

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Gluten Intolerance and Your Pet

This paper is an article I wrote for the newsletter of when asked about the prevalence of celiac disease (gluten intolerance) in the dog and cat. This condition has been definitively diagnosed in the Irish Setter but not many other breeds of dogs. I will not be at all surprised when we find that it does exist in numerous other breeds… and even the lovable mutt…but as this article explains, that may very well be a moot point. Gluten is only the beginning.

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The Answer

This 40-plus page paper is my first major paper, written in 2001 and hurriedly placed on this site on that fateful and tragic day of 9-11. It represents the culmination of nearly two years of research on the subject of food-related disorders and contains an amazing amount of facts that have been hidden from public view concerning this subject. It covers how the “big 4” trouble foods- gluten, dairy, soy and corn- came into being, catapulted into common usage, and became directly involved in most of our serious medical conditions, including epilepsy, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia, ADHD, pain syndromes, depression, and allergies. Severe immune-mediated diseases such as diabetes, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis are also covered.


Yes, it is quite long, but it appeared on my computer screen and was placed onto the Web just as it came out of my head. And it is wordy in places. But, as I tell my clients, “There is no law that you have to read it all in one sitting. Think of it as a free, short book rather than a long research paper. It’s all how you look at it, right?”


The one thing I can say is that this information WILL change your life…guaranteed!!!

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