Nutritional Interventions in Autoimmune Diseases from Christoph Lenz on Vimeo.
The talk focused on “Nutritional Interventions in Autoimmune Diseases (AD)”, the subject being hotly debated and fast progressions taking place. Established guidelines incorporate these findings increasingly as the topic gains prominence in disease prevention/ modification and are of interest to any healthcare professional.

The presentation includes:
– A brief overview of the prevalence and cost of AD,
– Problems with current treatment approaches,
– A short overview of the genesis of AD
– The role our environment (incl. our food) plays
– Finally a solution suggesting an oligoantigenic elimination diet
– A “Paleo Autoimmune Protocol” is proposed and some clinical practice insights are given.

Thanks very much to everybody who attended the talk. I am looking forward to receive your questions, concerns and feedback!

Please let me know should you be interested in any of the topics mentioned in this presentation or anywhere else on this blog. I am happy to speak and engage with any group and regularly speak to healthcare professionals, corporates, special interest groups and the lay public.

ThinkFood Paradigmen-Wechsel bei Ernährungsempfehlungen from Christoph Lenz on Vimeo.
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Gesunder Menschenverstand im Dschungel der fettarmen Pyramiden und vollwertigen Ernährungskreise. Was hat es auf sich mit Low Carb, Glykämischer Last und BMI? Wieviele Mahlzeiten und Snacks sollen es denn sein? Wo sind wir gelandet mit fettarm und Vollkorn? Warum macht der Fortschritt unser Gesundheitssystem nicht günstiger? Woher kommen die neuerlichen Erfolge bei der Behandlung von Autoimmunerkrankungen? Wie eine langfristige Änderung des Lebensstils gar nicht so schwer und unüberwindbar ist.



We all know how frustrating it is to be on the millions’t diet and still not fit into the new bikini or the old speedo. For every kilo lost, 3 are gained after diet cessation and the constant self-restriction interferes with every mealtime: food has become your enemy and just looking at a piece of cake piles onto your hips. You might not have noticed up until now, but your nightly after work beer doesn’t only make your pants tighter, it might also cause a lot of those daily aches and pains we get so accustomed to. Apparently being part of getting old, we just accept the increasing padding and decreasing flexibility along with sore joints, a tight neck and the customary, occasional headache. Be it weight issues, skin issues, digestive ailments, seasonal allergies or fertility issues, your symptoms might be directly related to the foods you eat. In oder to find out what could be affecting you,

Exclude the usual suspects involved in allergic or gut-disrupting reactions.

These inflammatory food-groups unbalance your hormones and disrupt your bodily homeostasis – in other words – you are way off balance and your body will show you that it’s not doing all that well by getting bigger, being sore and clouding up your head. If you’ve ever had one of those days when getting out of bed already needs convincing, getting your limbs into gear without pain takes about half an hour, your eyes won’t open up widely enough to spot the most recent pimple and it’s hard to remember where you’ve put your cup of coffee, it’s time to try ThinkFood30. Eliminating certain food-groups will allow your body to heal, recovering from the otherwise constant fire you were feeding: systemic inflammation.

Combatting systemic inflammation will change your life.

Your metabolism isn’t slower than somebody else’s or you weren’t genetically blessed with a faster one, everyone can optimise their metabolism according to their own needs. This will change your relationship to food, your own body, your habits, your sleeping patterns and your mood-states – not just because you look all ripped and pimple-free, but because your brain chemistry is set on positive, high volume capacity again.

Sounds great, where’s the hitch?

We’ll be honest here. First of all, eliminating certain food-groups doesn’t sound all that difficult, particularly to someone who has been through the cabbage soup only regimen, but most of the food-groups to be cut are those most of you are extremely fond of such as your beer, bread or the double thick greek yoghurt. Ironically, most of the potentially inflammatory food-groups are also the most addictive ones, on account of a high hidden sugar content or based on an adrenaline ‘craving’ caused by the allergic reaction to it. So here’s the deal. If you do decide to give this a try, you must either be frustrated and sore or sick enough to do this or really want a change for the better. There is no trying it halfway or having a little sip of beer. THE FOOD-GROUPS EXCLUDED ARE NOT TO BE CONSUMED AT ALL. Not even a tiny little piece, 30 days long. Secondly,

30 days seems all right time wise, but ,in actual fact, you are meant to carry on with this forever. After you have ‘reset’ your body within those 30 days, you can reintroduce singular items into your eating plan to see if and how your body reacts.

It will all sound a little weird right now, but after 30 days you will actually find that you can hear your body again. It will all of a sudden tell you what it really feels like eating, food will taste and smell different and overall you will be far more in tune with your ‘inner’ self than you ever were. A lot of patients of ours have admitted to not liking pizza anymore or finding the taste of coke disgusting, after having had at least three per day for the past 15 years. So what we’re actually saying is: expect to change. After this, you might not like pizza anymore.

ThinkFood30 Protocol

Although the low fat, ready-made meat lasagne might sound like real food – NO – it’s not. We’re talking about fresh meat, seafood, tons of vegetables, and fat (yes, the right fat is incredibly good, actually assisting in losing weight and combatting inflammation) from fruits, oils, nuts and seeds. The more unpronounceable the food ingredients list gets, the less you should eat it. Unprocessed and natural means no ingredients at all, you are the only one processing here. In order to reduce systemic inflammation, regain your metabolism and be able to figure out what does you harm there is a host of foods you shouldn’t even look at:

What NOT (none, nada, not even a crumb) to eat:

NO added sugar of any kind, especially NOT artificial sweeteners.
No maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, Splenda, Canderel, Nutrasweet, xylitol, stevia, etc.
Reading labels is a must, sugar is hidden in forms that are unrecognisable at first.
NO Alcohol
Yes, you’ve read right. No little sip of champaign cause its your friends birthday and no quick beer watching rugby with your buddies. It will make it easier for you not to smoke either (yes…NO tobacco either). You will be surprised to see how many ‘choices’ control you and not the other way around.
NO Grains
Such as wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, amaranth, buckwheat, sprouted grains and all of those gluten-free pseudo-grains like quinoa. For ThinkFood30 purposes, corn has been added to grains. Please, read your labels. Wheat, corn and rice are added into most foods in one way or another called starch, germ or bran etc….
NO Legumes
Sorry, no peanut butter. No beans of any kind: black, red, pinto, navy, white, kidney, lima, fava, etc. No peas, chickpeas, lentils or peanuts. This also includes all forms of soy – soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, and all the ways soy is sneaked into foods, e.g. lecithin.
No Dairy
Be it from a cow, a goat or from sheep – completely off limits. No cheese, no cream, no milk, no kefir, no yoghurt, no sour cream, no butter. This also goes for products containing milk solids such as milk chocolate.
No MSG, Sulfites or carrageen
Avoiding processed foods will help you avoid these. Read your labels carefully.
No potatoes
In order to improve the hormonal impact of your food choices, leave white, red, purple, Yukon gold and fingerling potatoes off your plate.
No paleo-ifying desserts
As ‘paleo-approved’ as some recipes might seem, stick to your NO-Gos from this list, as tempting as the coconut, almond flour muffins might be. Basic, natural and unprocessed: no nut-flour, no coconut milk anythings.

ThinkFood30 aims to optimise your systems functioning and is not to be measured by a daily kilogram loss. We suggest weighing yourself once at the onset of the program and once after the 30 days.

Body Fat analysis, especially verbally from your bathroom scale, will only confuse and comparative measurements cause nothing but stress. This is meant to change you and not just your hips. Do not over-focus on one element only.

Exceptions to the rules

Clarified Butter or Ghee. Clarified butter or ghee is the only source of dairy allowed. Plain old butter is NOT allowed, as the milk proteins found in non-clarified butter could impact the results of your program.
Fruit juice as a sweetener. Added orange or apple juice as a sweetener.
Certain legumes. Green beans, sugar snap peas and snow peas. Technically being a legume, these are far more “pod” than “bean,”
Vinegar. White, balsamic, apple cider, red wine, and rice. No vinegars with added sugar, or malt vinegar, which generally contains gluten.
Processed foods. Minimally processed foods: canned coconut milk, applesauce, tomato sauce, chicken broth or canned olives, etc– but avoid guar gum, carrageen, MSG or sulfites.

The best time to start is

Now. Mark 30 days on your calender. Read our post ThinkFood Beginners Guide to clean out your kitchen, bedroom and your life. Print out your No-Gos and put them on the fridge and in your wallet. Go to your local supermarket, farmers market or grocery store and stock up so that you can organise a couple of days in advance. Don’t worry about weighing portions, count calories or looking at the fat content, start with making the right food choices and prepare yourself for situations that might be difficult. If possible, do the organic, grass-fed thing but if not, focus on the right food choice for now.
ThinkFood30 will only work on 100% compliance. No licking the mixing batter spoon, no quick chips on the go or a handful of peanuts because there was nothing else around: prepare yourself. It’s good for you. A splash of milk in your coffee is enough to set your 30 days back onto zero. No special occasions, no cheats. We’re not trying to be mean, we just want to keep you from unnecessary disappointments. A tiny amount of inflammatory food is enough to break your healing cycle forcing you to start over. Don’t sell yourself short. Thirty days is all it is.

What will happen?

Decades of poor eating habits won’t disappear overnight. Your body will revolt against the deprivation of sugar-driven energy spikes, processed carbohydrates and flavour enhancing chemicals, much the same as when ridding yourself of an addiction. Slight headaches, irritability and difficulty concentrating are not unusual, but normally subside after the first two weeks.
Contrary to expectation, you will not starve, and the protein&veg combo will sustain you much longer than any refined carbohydrate ever has. Try and distinguish between hunger and plain craving, it will make your choices easier.
You will start to see significant benefits and changes within one month. Whether your energy levels stabilise and increase or your body composition changes, you’ve slept properly for the first time in months… more will continue to happen: feeling less bloated, conditions, aches and ailments improve, recovery after exercise or a hard days work is quicker and easier, mood stabilises, weight balances, skin clarifies, sinuses clear,etc. You will actually be able to fall asleep when you want to and get up ready to sing in the shower.

Useful advice

Learn to say NO. Take it seriously enough not to cave into social/ peer pressure. Instead of seeing yourself as deprived try turning it around and think of how much better you will feel the next morning. The worst will probably be your own head, screaming at you for want of a beer or a a quick delicious smelling cheese coated bacon and egg roll from vida. NO. NO. NO. NO. and NO.
Feel free to contact us for more advice or if anything is unclear. Food is our business. ThinkGoodFood.


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ThinkFood is about well-being, nutrition and human function. How do you perform at optimal levels whilst being drowned in your dose of daily stress and anxiety? Have cornflakes with added iron and folic acid always been part of the human diet? How do you recreate an image of yourself that smiles back at you when looking into the mirror?
We’ve found a lot of answers for you

Sorry, no universal quick fix here, but individuality counts for something, right?

We deal with people as uniquely functional organisms, not Type A or B, not Apple or Pear shaped, not depressed or bipolar, but how much what and when? Why the sleepless nights and the always ripe pimples on the back? By now we have a fair idea of why certain bodily functions provisionally shut down and others are completely overworked – all owing to individual particularity. As complicated as this sounds – it’s not. You stand a good chance of improving AND fitting into your favourite pants. But who said looking good is everything? Laugh again. Mess around. Tinker and play. Without feeling self-conscious.

Blogs and philosophy

Since Dr Google is the most consulted Doctor on Earth, we would never discount the value thereof.  Being a trained and certified pharmacist myself however, i’ve had my share of selling and researching drugs – utilising my knowledge to dissipate Dr Googles overload of info, myths, suppositions, speculations, facts, studies, and countless wandering souls reports. This Blog is the result of never-ending research, updates, open source collections, comparisons and news, worthy spreading, critically compiled by scientists. All contributions, corrections and suggestions are very welcome. Since most sufferers know more about their ailments than their doctors do, we never discount patients reports, instincts, or questions. Without detailed case research, no client can be individually assessed, much less helped or treated.

This blog in no way attempts to substitute the advice of a medical professional or discounts any opinions voiced by such. It aims to offer alternatives following the principles of Think Food: individual assessment starting with understanding the person and her situation, nutritional correction, the individual optimisation of metabolic state. Pharma-Reps would impoverish dealing with us and the new bestseller-book on diets doesn’t fit onto our shelf.

Functional Nutrition Standards

Functional medicine emphasises a definable and teachable process of integrating multiple knowledge bases within a pragmatic intellectual matrix that focuses on functionality at many levels, rather than a single treatment for a single diagnosis. Functional medicine uses the patient’s story as a key tool for integrating diagnosis, signs and symptoms, and evidence of clinical imbalances into a comprehensive approach to improve both the patient’s environmental inputs and his or her physiological function.
The Institute for Functional Medicine teaches health care professional’s how to apply these principles in practice through an intensive 5 day training course called Applying Functional Medicine in Clinical Practice™.
I attended and completed the inaugural AFMCP™-SA training in Cape Town in 2012.

A Whole Person Approach

SUN Integrative MedicineAlthough his main focus, nutrition is not the only variable in achieving an optimal health and maximum well-being with a client. Chris studied Integrative Medicine at the University of Stellenbosch.

Integrative Medicine is a healing-oriented medicine that takes account of the whole person (body, mind and spirit), including all aspects of lifestyle. It emphasises the therapeutic relationship and makes use of all appropriate therapies, healthcare professionals and disciplines, in an evidence-based approach. In essence, Integrative Medicine seeks to combine the very best of conventional, complementary, alternative and traditional medicine in a new paradigm of healthcare. This new paradigm not only incorporates existing practices, but transcends each of them to define an entirely new system of healing.

The Who of Think Food

Christoph LenzChristoph Lenz (that’s me) is a pharmacist as well as nutritional coach, specialised in nutrition and drug information. After having studied in Düsseldorf as well as Cape Town, Chris graduated in Germany and entered the big world of pharmaceuticals: Doc Morris and Grey Healthcare Advertising in Cologne. In 2004 his diagnosis was clear: multiple sclerosis. Life had to change. Not just a bit. A lot. The research started.

Since his relocation to Cape Town Chris has predominantly focused on ‘problem cases’ (auto-immune diseases, diabetes, rheuma, MS, Hashimotos, cancer, etc) and families up in arms about if the lunchbar goes into the lunchbox.


How to get in touch with us

Think Food is situated in the middle of Cape Town. The Gardens Centre and Cape Town Mediclinic are close by. The premises are shared with Dr Tamsyn Dixon (Endless Health) a very gentle chiropractic doctor.

219 Upper Buitenkant St
Cape Town 8001
South Africa
+27 21 813 9559

info at

skype: lenzchristoph

You can reach us with the MyCiti bus or by car or bicycle (plenty of on-street parking is available). As you are coming up from the MyCiti station (Gardens/ Mill Street) you go past 2 intersections and will find us just before the 4-way stop opposite Marika’s.



How to get in touch with us

Think Food is situated in the middle of Cape Town. The Gardens Centre and Cape Town Mediclinic are close by. The premises are shared with Dr Tamsyn Dixon (Endless Health) a very gentle chiropractic doctor.

219 Upper Buitenkant St
Cape Town 8001
South Africa
+27 21 813 9559

info at

skype: lenzchristoph

To connect using the interwebs and social media channels you may share with:

Twitter squareShare your tweets with @ThinkFoodSA. Common hashtags I use are: #Paleo, #PaleoAIP (Paleo AutoimmuneProtocol), #LCHF (Low Carb High Fat), #ThinkFood, #Microbiome, #keto or #ketogenic, #BadPharma, #noGMO, and of course #LoveYourHood and #CapeTown, #OZCF (Oranjezigt City Farm), #bulletproof, #choccy, #chocolate, #CleanAir, #CannaMed, #MedicinalCannabis

Facebook Squarefor the latest Facebook gossip

Google plus squareSee what’s happening in my google universe

Pinterest squareon Pinterest I mainly share and compile recipes

Linkedin squareand of course the LinkedIn profile in case you want to hire a responsible pharmacist that although he studied Drug Design in Düsseldorf – doesn’t happen to like drugs very much.

But an @Altbier once a year to bemoan another loss of Fortuna Düsseldorf 150px-Fortuna_Düsseldorf.svgwill put my gut health to a test!










Functional Medicine Doctors

Dr James Laporta is a functional and integrative doctor and very knowledgeable in Chinese medicine, traditional and herbal treatments in psychotherapy and integrative oncology – making use of the Best of both worlds: East and West, always tailored to the patients needs.

Dr Frieda Badenhorst, is a very thorough and forward thinking integrative medicine practitioner which I got to know when she tutored our Integrative Medicine Course at University of Stellenbosch. Challenged by the desire to meet the needs of her patients she continues studying and challenges believes. In her practice she uses Functional Medicine, Homotoxicology/ Bio-regulatory medicine, Bio puncture, Biofeedback and Energy Medicine.

Dr Nichola Buchan, is my trusted integrative and functional medicine practitioner who knows about hormonal health, the thyroid, adrenal insufficincy, sex hormones, chronic fatigue, and bioidentical hormone therapy.

Dr David Nye is a down-to-earth kind of general practitioner, homeopath and acupuncturist. David is truly one of the leading integrative practitioners, who has co-written and lectured the fine curriculum of Integrative Medicine at Universities of Stellenbosch and the Western Cape.

Dr Louise Lindenberg is a general and integrative medical practitioner. Louise is my go-to-source in the field of developmental difficulties in children including autism, AD(H)D and others. Louise knows about the importance of diet and how positively the avoidance of certain allergens and intoxicants is for these children. Lousie shares her rooms and her approach to whole persons (although sometimes still little) health with:

Dr Helen Muir, one of our finest Integrative Oncology practitioners in the country.

Dr Raoul Goldberg runs an integrative GP family practice since 1983  where he participates actively with his patients in a way best described as Participatory Medicine. Dr Goldberg involves psycho therapy work to explore the deeper causes of chronic illness.