Dry foot gangrene, as a part of diabetes and/or atherosclerosis management, has become a major medical problem. This website is intended to allow you to manage your own care, ask the right questions, insist on adequate management and information, and seek an optimal outcome for yourself as an informed patient. Perhaps it will even help the health professionals who are giving care to better understand and, hopefully, incorporate into their practice the nutritional approach to gangrene - its prevention and treatment.
Please note that this website is not intended for “most people”. It is written for those who want to stand out in self-health care. If you are such a person, we strongly advise that you give serious thought to all of the suggestions about how to stop the progression of gangrene, dry foot gangrene in particular. If you are tempted to think the suggestions are simplistic or biased, we assure you they are not.
- Sugar (in ALL forms) - limiting sugar is CRITICAL!!!
- Aspartame * (NutraSweet or Equal)
- Sucralose ** (Splenda)
- Trans fatty acids (all fried foods and margarine)
- MSG - artificial chemical (may not be listed in ingredients)
- All artificial preservatives and chemicals, if possible
* Aspartame - the technical name for the brand names, NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, and Equal-Measure - is the common food additive found in thousands of products such as diet soda, yogurt, and over-the-counter medicines. However, this sugar substitute – in fact, a chemical poison (neurotoxin) - should never been approved for consumption as it poses a public health threat. Aspartame accounts for over 75 percent of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the US FDA. A few of the 90 (!) different documented symptoms caused by the components of aspartame include: headaches/migraines, dizziness, seizures, nausea, numbness, muscle spasms, weight gain (it actually increases appetite!), rashes, depression, fatigue, irritability, tachycardia, insomnia, vision problems, hearing loss, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, loss of taste, tinnitus, vertigo, memory loss, and joint pain.
** Sucralose - a relatively new artificial sweetener (high-intensity sugar substitute; 50% sweeter than aspartame - but less toxic), sold under the name Splenda™. It is non-caloric and about 600 times sweeter than sucrose (white table sugar), already used in a variety of products (in the United States, approved for the use in 15 food and beverage categories). However, sucralose is NOT proven safe; it does NOT provide any benefit to the public (only for the corporations making and using sucralose); it does NOT help with weight loss (on the contrary: it my stimulate appetite); it has NOT been shown to be safe for the environment, and, finally, there are NO long-term (12-24 months) human studies on sucralose (similar to several years ago for aspartame). Its regular use may contribute to serious chronic immunological or neurological disorders.
Despite these concerns, Splenda is now used in over 4,000 products worldwide, from carbonated drinks and nutrition bars to desserts, confectionery and dairy products, according to its U.K. manufacturer Tate & Lyle. And this year (2005), the number one global soft drinks player launches a new version of Diet Coke, complete with Splenda sucralose logo on the packaging.
Eat Less Fruit:
- Sweet fruit (fresh and dried), such as grape (red and green), raisin, plum, fig, date, pineapple, apricot - high in sugar
- Melons, such as cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon - high in sugar
- Banana, orange, grapefruit (red and white) to be avoided (high in sugar, contaminated with mold!)
- Strawberry, raspberry, blueberry, cranberry, lemon, lime - OK, in moderation
ALL fruit juices - fresh and bottled
Eat More Vegetables:
- Kale, kohlrabi, Swiss chard, spinach
- Dandelion greens, mustard greens, collard greens, green and red cabbage, broccoli
- Red and green leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, endive
- Chinese cabbage, bok choy, fennel, celery, cucumbers
- Cauliflower, escarole, zucchini, brussel sprouts
- Onions, tomatoes, peppers, parsley
Summary: The greener, the better.
- Iceberg and head lettuce: low nutritional value
- Carrots and underground vegetables, especially beet roots - high in sugar
- White or red potatoes, beets - high in sugar
- Corn: popcorn, chips (it is a grain, not a vegetable; any food that has corn in top five ingredients)
- Most grains - especially wheat (including durham flour and semolina), rye, barley
- Lower other grains intake: rice (brown, short grain, and white), millet, spelt, kamut, oats, quinoa, teff, amaranth
- Chewing gum (wastes digestive enzymes; source of sugar or artificial sweetener)
Have More Omega-3 Fatty Acids, DHA and EPA:
- Cod liver oil - especially during the winter, early spring and late fall months
- High quality fish oil - preferably in capsules (standard size 180 mg of EPA and 120 mg of DHA)
- Organic flax seeds (not flax oil) - preferably freshly ground up, mixed with salads or vegetables
- ALL vegetable seed oils - have LESS omega-6 fatty acids, with the exception of cold pressed extra virgin olive oil for salads only (for cooking or stir-frying use grape seed oil)
- Spring water or filtered
- Well water is generally OK
- Drink water at room temperature, not chilled or iced (shuts down the digestive system!)
- Lemon and lime juice can be added intermittently for flavor change
- Amount needed: ideally, one quart for every 50 pounds of body weight
Drink Vegetable Juices
- Freshly processed vegetable juice (ALL fruit juices should be avoided!)
- Green tea (very limited amounts as high fluoride content may cause problems)
- Tap water
- Softened or distilled water
- Coffee, tea, colas, diet drinks, store bought fruit juices
- Milk, especially skim (get vitamin D from supplements or sun exposure; get calcium from green vegetables or supplements)
- Meats, grass fed (not grain fed) REAL beef, poultry (chicken, turkey, ostrich, game meats (venison, buffalo, lamb)
- Fish - with caution due to possible mercury contamination, preferably summer flounder, wild Pacific salmon, croaker, sardines, haddock, tilapia
- Eggs - organic only, not scrambled (2-3 times per week)
- Seeds - raw only: sunflower, pumpkin, sesame, flax
- Nuts - raw only: cashews, Brazil nuts, almonds, pecans (but in limited quantities)
- Pork: ham, most bacon, pork roast and chops
- Shellfish: shrimp, lobster, crabs, clams
- Peanuts - and any food that has peanuts
- In limited quantities - not complete protein source, high in carbohydrates
- Soak beans (not lentils) for 48-72 hours
- Rinsing every 12 hours
- Cook them for 8-12 hours in a crock-pot
- If canned - on occasion only (less nutritional value), from a health food store
- All soy, unless fermented or sprouted
- Tofu, isolated soy protein (ISP) - soy milk, soy protein powder, soy flour
- Only miso and tempeh (fermented soy), and soy sprouts are acceptable - available in a health food store.
Although the dietary restrictions advised to stop the progression of gangrene may seem hard, it is "heartening" to realize you can achieve significant improvement of your circulation - if you put your mind to it.