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130 articles in food

How To Make Sprout Magic

How To Make Sprout Magic

Make them the base for salads, add them at the last minute to homemade soups, even carry them around with you in a bag and eat them instead of chocolate bars and biscuits. They are sweet and delicious and won’t leave you with an energy slump. An excellent way to cram your meals with goodness is to sprout your own seeds (sometimes called bean sprouts). Seeds and grains are latent powerhouses of nutritional goodness and life energy: Add water to germinate them, let them grow for a few days in your kitchen and you will harvest delicious, inexpensive fresh foods of quite phenomenal health-enhancing value. The vitamin content of seeds increases dramatically when they germinate. The vitamin C content in soya beans multiplies five times within three days of germination - a mere tablespoon of soybean sprouts contains half the recommended daily adult requirements of this vitamin. The vitamin B2 in an oat grain rises by 1300 percent almost as soon as the seed sprouts, and by the time tiny leaves have formed it has risen by 2000 percent. Some sprouted seeds and grains are believed to have anticancer properties, which is why they form an important part of the natural methods of treating the disease. Another attractive thing about sprouts is their price. The basic seeds and grains are cheap and readily available in supermarkets and health food stores - chickpeas, brown lentils, mung beans, wheat grains and so forth. And since you sprout them yourself with nothing but clean water, they become an easily accessible source of organically grown fresh vegetables, even for city dwellers. DIY Sprouting When you discover how economical and easy it is to grow sprouts you will want to have some on the go all the time. Once germinated, you can keep sprouts in polythene bags in the fridge for up to a week - just long enough to get a new batch ready for eating. Most people grow sprouts in glass jars covered with nylon mesh held in place with an elastic band around the neck, but I have discovered an even simpler method which allows you to grow many more, and avoids the jar method problem of seeds rotting due to insufficient drainage. You will need the following: seeds (e.g. mung beans) seed trays with drainage holes, available from gardening shops and nurseries a jar or bowl to soak seeds in overnight a plant atomizer - from gardening or hardware shops a sieve nylon mesh - available from gardening shops. Place two handfuls of seed or beans in the bottom of a jar or bowl and cover with plenty of water. Leave to soak overnight. Pour the seeds into a sieve and rinse well with water. Be sure to remove any dead or broken seeds or pieces of debris. Line a seedling tray with nylon mesh (this helps the seeds drain better) and pour in the soaked seeds. Place in a warm dark spot for fast growth. Spray the seeds twice a day with fresh water in an atomizer and stir them gently with your hand in order to aerate them. After about three days place the seeds in sunlight for several hours to develop the chlorophyll (green) in them. Rinse in a sieve, drain well and put in a polythene bag in the fridge to use in salads, wok-fries etc. There are many different seeds you can sprout - each with its own particular flavor and texture. Have fun discovering which ones you like best.

Cut Grains And Thrive

Cut Grains And Thrive

There is a well-known saying about computers: “garbage in, garbage out.” The same can be said of your body. It’s no use thinking of the food you choose to eat as if it were a dead fuel. Yet most people do. It is an assumption which results in all our dreadful degenerative diseases, from high blood pressure and atherosclerosis to cancer, chronic fatigue, mental confusion, weight gain and the other conditions for which we are urged to swallow dangerous pharmaceuticals, believing that we are doing the right thing. Here’s what you need to know about starches such as grains and cereals. We’ve been taught that these foods are wholesome, salt of the earth fare. The smell of freshly baked bread celebrates home and comfort. It brings us a superb form of fiber to protect from constipation—or does it? Here is my advice: If you value your health and strength, cut down on or even eliminate grains and cereals from your diet. Your body was never designed to handle them. Sounds revolutionary? It is. But following this advice can not only help make you well and get rid of excess fat. It can restore lost vitality to your life. BACK TO THE FUTURE Here’s why. The genes you have inherited from your ancestors matter. It can take 100,000 years or more for the human body to make a single, natural alteration in its genetic structure. It is not true that your distant ancestors wandered through forests munching on wild fruits like gorillas. For thousands upon thousands of years, they were dwellers in grasslands. They walked bipedally and lived mostly by digging up starchy tubers, roots and corms, which have something in common with today’s potato and taro. Neanderthal man relied on these starchy plants for more than 250,000 years, also hunting and eating herbivores and fish. What scientists now call the Paleolithic diet consisted of 15 to 20% of these carbohydrate foods such as tubers, rhizomes, roots and corms, along with between 50 and 70% fatty animal foods, as well as insects, eggs, birds, reptiles, and creatures from lakes and the sea. Depending upon where these early humans lived in the world, some also gathered foods such as coconuts. Sweet fruits such as those we eat today were non-existent. So were grains. GO WILD, GO FREE At the top of the human food chain, our Paleolithic ancestors were characteristically tall and strong, with incredibly healthy teeth. Their high-meat-high-fat foods together with a relatively small percentage of these vegetable carbohydrates created an amazingly health-giving human diet that has hardly been seen since. They hunted mammoths and fought for their right to them with wild animals who also hunted and ate them. Whether our political and religious leanings like it or not, it still is their protein-oriented, flesh-based diet that remains the healthiest for us today. On such a diet that the forces of natural selection have refined and moulded us to function best. To put it another way, we have been genetically programmed to eat this way for hundreds of thousands of years. HERE COME GRAINS The agricultural revolution began some 10,000 years ago. With the coming of agriculture, man shifted away from his high-protein, low-carb diet. Gradually cereals, fruits, and starchy vegetables began to play a big part in human nutrition. Their bodies suffered for it, as ours still do today. By 4000 years ago, when the agricultural revolution was in full swing, a lot of physical degeneration had taken place. Men and women had shrunk in height. Dental decay and malformation of the jaw had become widespread. Disease epidemics began to shorten the human lifespan. This moment in history marks the very beginning of what nowadays are known as the diseases of civilization, including obesity. It’s hard to imagine a more different scenario from the healthy, nomadic ways of our ancient hunter-gatherer forefathers. Anthropologist Kathleen Gordon at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC describes this well when she says, ‘Not only was the agricultural “revolution” not really so revolutionary at its inception, it has also come to represent something of a nutritional “devolution” for much of mankind.’ WHAT’S THE PROBLEM? What’s wrong with grains and cereals? Plenty, and we are not told about it. For generations, we’ve believed that grains and cereals are good for us. Sadly, the truth is that there are plenty of reasons not to eat them often—and, for many people, not to eat them at all. Most grains can cause humans toxic effects. For instance, corn—the domesticated form of the teosinte grass—can create pellagra. Many of us are starch-sensitive as a result of toxins created by our gut bacteria as they try to digest starches. Our 21st century bodies have never been genetically adapted to thrive on them. Research affirms this fact. Grains and cereals contain anti-nutrients to protect them from predators such as birds and insects. They can exert negative effects on human metabolism. These toxins can include lectins and alpha-amylase inhibitors, which behave like allergens. Lectins are especially important anti-nutrients found in many places, especially in grains, legumes, seeds and nuts. They can trigger digestive problems such as nausea, diarrhea, bloating. Your body creates antibodies in response to lectins which can, in turn, launch an attack on your own body, causing autoimmune issues like celiac disease, lupus and multiple sclerosis. Lectins damage the walls of your intestines, creating “leaky gut” so that large particles of food cross the intestinal barrier to enter the bloodstream directly, creating food sensitivities and overwhelming the immune system so it starts attacking your body causing eczema, weight gain, depression and migraine. The best way to reduce lectin’s negative health effects is to cut down on your consumption of grains and cereals or even eliminatee these foods altogether. All grains and cereals are full of phytic acid—a mineral blocker. It prevents your body from absorbing vital minerals such as magnesium, calcium, zinc, copper, and iron. Finally, there is the fiber issue. We’ve been told we need to eat cereal grains to make sure we get enough whole grain fiber. Yet grain fiber contains toxic proteins, including gluten, and roughage that can actually damage the intestinal wall. Cut down on grains, cereals and legumes to create a low toxicity way of eating to keep you slim and fit, and protect you from rapid aging and degenerative diseases. This is your first step towards freedom. SAFE STARCHES What are the safe starches? They include white rice, potatoes, sago, tapioca, and sweet potatoes, provided they are organically grown. Akin to what our ancestors lived on for hundreds of years, these starches can improve your gut health. They also provide useful minerals such as potassium. These foods must be cooked gently so that any natural toxins which they contain are neutralized. Brown rice is not great because the phyten it contains can provoke an immune response. But there are no known auto immune antibodies generated by white rice protein. When it comes to potatoes, you should know that the solanine and chaconine toxins they can contain are generated when potatoes are exposed to light and heat. This is why it’s important to keep them in cool, dark conditions. Any potatoes that have become discolored or not fresh you should throw away. There are other sources of what appear to be safe starches, including buckwheat, amaranth and quinoa, but these have not yet been thoroughly researched. I refer to them as the faux grains. They can be great for baking and to replace the usual grains and cereals. People who choose to use them usually do very well on them. They do not appear to cause weight gain or digestive problems, provided you eat them in moderation. You can make wonderful baked goods from them, such as white rice noodles, pasta dishes, rice crackers to replace wheat crackers, sugar-free muffins, pancakes, and biscuits. To learn more about these delicious safe starches, click here. DECEPTIVE PROGRAMMING Grains and cereals are cheap to manufacture. And they are also highly addictive. For more than half a century, food manufacturers intent on making a profit have been producing a great variety of hyped foods by fragmenting and reducing raw material foodstuffs—including grains and seeds, cereals and legumes—to simple “nuts and bolts”. These are then whipped up into the manufactured convenience foods that most people pick up from supermarket shelves. You know the kind of thing: Ready-to-eat in a minute meals, to cakes, breads and packaged, denatured stuff that makes up three quarters of what most people eat these days. Flour and sugar-based convenience foods full of junk fats have an ultra-long shelf life. Most, in truth, are nothing more than junk foods, devoid of any nutritional value other than calories. The processed fats they contain, together with masses of artificial chemicals used as flavorings, colorings and preservatives, are far removed from the foods you need for health. It is little wonder many human beings today— even those in economically privileged countries—stuff themselves with dangerous pharmaceutical drugs, yet do little more than survive. STOP EARLY AGING Our high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet is a disaster for long-term health. Here are just a few of the negative effects of living on it: Raised serum insulin levels, causing insulin resistance and resulting in metabolic distortions which undermine health and vitality. Lowered basal metabolic rate, leading to weight gain and low energy. Increased adipose tissue growth accompanied by a gross reduction in lean muscle tissue. Acceleration of biological aging. Development of food allergies or sensitivity, especially to grains, legumes, cereals and dairy food. Development of over-active immune system and eventual immune failure. Soaring incidence of degenerative diseases, including heart disease, obesity and cancer. Such a way of eating brings about serious problems with blood sugar levels and causes endless suffering to people with diabetes. And it never reduces high blood pressure. People who lose weight on such a diet never keep it off. Yet the myths we are fed by the media and multi-national corporations persist. We find ourselves stuck in a frustrating circle of misinformation, temptation and self-blame. I believe it’s time to strip away the false “truths” and get back to basics. SET YOURSELF FREE I’ve worked with huge numbers of people who have changed their way of eating—by cutting out convenience foods based on refined flours, grains and legumes, and starchy vegetables—lose their cravings sometimes as quickly as in a few weeks. This feels like they have been set free from a life in prison. Their appetite diminishes, their blood sugar levels stabilize and their life transforms. Before long these people feel uncomfortable when they eat more than their body actually needs. For them, the transition to nutrient-rich-calorie-poor way of eating becomes a graceful, natural experience. They report that they have never felt better, while friends and family tell them they look wonderful. I would never have believed this had it not also happened to me. You will only know what it can do for you when you get yourself into a low-grain-and-cereal way of eating, or even eliminate these foods altogether. I challenge you to find out for yourself.

Apple Detox - Sacred Truths Podcast Episode 1

Apple Detox - Sacred Truths Podcast Episode 1

In the next five minutes, I’ll tell you how—with little effort—you can banish feeling low in energy and replace it with looking and feeling great, in only two days. Meet my amazing Apple Detox. It can work miracles if you’ve been through a spate of too much work and too little sleep. It’s great in Spring before you hit the beach, after Christmas indulgences, or any time you need a lift. Detoxification Detoxification is a long word for just clearing out your system. It’s a process that stimulates your body’s natural ability to get rid of the toxic wastes that build up in your cells, tissues and organs from eating convenience foods and breathing polluted air. What’s the secret power? Organic apples. The second most cultivated and widely-eaten fruit in the world is the apple. We were well into the 21st century before science finally discovered its incredible nutritional value. Medical News Today featured an article about the top 10 healthiest foods. Apples were number one. Apples are extraordinarily rich in antioxidants, flavonoids, and marvelous dietary fiber. The phytonutrients and antioxidants they contain help reduce our risk of developing cancer, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. And there’s lots more. Scientific Studies Recent studies show that apples have the ability to improve your neurological health since they’re rich in quercetin, which reduces cellular damage caused by the oxidation and inflammation of neurons. Research at University of Quebec discovered that apples also reduce our risk of stroke. A big study involving 9,208 people showed that those who ate the most apples over a 28-year period had the lowest risk of stroke. Apples can also help reduce the risk of diabetes. A huge study involving 187,382 people showed that those who ate 3 servings of apples a week had a 7% lower risk of developing type-2 diabetes compared to those who did not. Now, let’s talk Apple Detox. How do you do it? Set aside two, or no more than three days for your Apple Detox. Buy a box of organic apples—or three or four different kinds for variety. They must be organic You can eat as many as you like each day, but you should eat the whole apple, including the peel, the seeds and the core You must chew it all very well, until you’ve got the last drop of flavor out of the fruit The only part you throw away is the woody stem You eat nothing but apples They must be fresh and eaten raw. You can munch your crisp organic apple au naturel or you can grate them and sprinkle a little cinnamon on top You can even put them in a blender with a little pure water to make a whole apple drink But you must not put them through a juicer. You need the whole apple to make things work Detox Reaction If you happen to get a headache within the first day or two, or feel moody, get an upset stomach or loose bowels, this is only a sign that your body is throwing off wastes at such a pace that you are experiencing what’s known in natural medicine as a cleansing crisis. In truth, this happens to very few people—except a few heavy coffee drinkers. If it happens to you, be glad. Even though it may be a bit of a nuisance for a few hours, this is actually a good sign. Your body is taking the opportunity to get rid of a lot of debris that it wants to eliminate. Make time to rest and relax—in a darkened room if possible. Be patient and kind to yourself while it passes. It’s quite a feat to be ridding your body of so much old debris at once. When this cleansing passes, it can leave you better than ever. Check with your health practitioner Eat apples whenever you’re hungry throughout the day. How long you carry out your Apple Detox depends on you. Always check with your health practitioner. Two days are plenty to give you a good start on spring cleaning your body. Three days is as much as any healthy body should do on his or her own, without being under the supervision of a practitioner well-versed in the use of living foods. Cautions No pregnant or lactating woman should ever do an apple detox, nor should anyone with a kidney, liver or heart complaint. For in such cases a sudden change of diet can carry with it potential dangers to health. But, if you are generally well, then a short apple detox is a great way to clear the decks for a new way of healthier living. Keeps The Doctor Away No wonder apples are special. The Welsh adage that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” is not just an old wives’ tale. The organic apple has more than earned it title as the queen of fruits. Try it and see for yourself.

Eat For Youth

Eat For Youth

Many of the most beautiful meals will be found on the ageless aging table. The variety of colors, textures, tastes and culinary experiences which delicious natural foods offer to anyone with an interest in food preparation and a love of fine cuisine at the very least equals the best traditional cooking. Eating fresh foods rich in `life force' in a high-raw way of eating means that your taste-buds, sense of smell and aesthetic awareness of food become dramatically heightened so that the appreciation of all that you eat can be greater than ever before. From being someone who used to love fresh cream and rich sauces I've become infinitely more appreciative of the fine flavors implicit in ageless aging cuisine. And I love it. Not only because I look younger, feel better all round and have infinitely more energy than before, but because the experience of eating itself has become so much more delightful. Most of us eat far too much and we dull our senses and our appreciation of food in the process. Even the most subtle of Beethoven's late quartets begins to dull the senses when you have too much of it. So can too much food even if it is the very best. Ageless aging cuisine revives them. Put your kitchen scales away and forget the complex routine for preparing a béchamel sauce.  It’s not conventional directions that matter when preparing foods, it is a passion for the foods themselves – a feeling reflected in our passion for the earth and life itself.  It’s good because it tastes good.  Such passion, which is visual, visceral and luscious, becomes the inspiration that, in food preparation, leads you automatically to make certain choices.  Open wide your kitchen window.  Welcome in the breezes of experiment, wit and spontaneity.  Inside, you find the traditional meal of roast meal and boiled Brussels sprouts topped off with a piece of sticky toffee pudding replaced by something far more hedonistic: slivers of raw Pacific salmon, luscious garden-fresh salad, followed by a winter sorbet of cranberry and mint.  The real joy in eating fresh, light foods lies in their taste, their texture and the remarkable ability they have to bring excitement to a palate jaded by too many highly processed, unimaginatively seasoned or over-cooked dishes. sheer energy I look on food as a source of both delight and life-energy which is passed on to us from the earth.  I believe this energy needs to be preserved by not cooking food too much, by eating it fresh and by respecting its essential nature.  Food eaten this way becomes a medium through which we build our own vitality – energy to protect the body from premature aging and illness, to enhance good looks and to keep the mind clear.  It is the life-energy present in abundance in fresh foods and the clean, simple protein from fish, game, organic meat and poultry that makes these foods irresistible and helps us look and feel great. The most significant change to human diets in two million years began with the agricultural revolution, when man went from a carbohydrate-poor to a carbohydrate-rich diet.  The more that these carbohydrates have become refined in the past 300 years, the more problems they have caused us, not only in terms of burgeoning obesity worldwide but also in the development of the chronic degenerative diseases of civilization.   The thing to remember is that when you eat low-starch vegetables such as broccoli, spinach, asparagus and cauliflower, or proteins such as fish, meat and eggs, the levels of glucose in the blood (blood sugar) rise very slowly and modestly.  On the other hand, when you eat what are known as high-glycemic foods - starchy foods, simple carbohydrates, sugars - like a muffin, pasta, breakfast cereal or ice cream, blood sugar soars, then crashes as insulin is released in order to lower your blood sugar.  You can end up feeling hungry even though you've just eaten a meal, crave sweets and biscuits, and reach for a cup of coffee and a cake mid-morning just to keep going.  High insulin levels, by the way, suppress human growth hormone essential for healthy muscle tissue, making you look flabby and older. The most important foods are fresh non-starchy vegetables, fresh fruits, and proteins like meat, seafood, eggs and game.  A little unprocessed cheese is fine too and a few nuts and seeds.  Go for nothing but the best.  Here are a few guidelines: Choose natural whole foods – organically grown/raised if possible Your foods need to be as fresh as possible and eaten as close to a living state as you can.  This allows little time for the deterioration that occurs as a result of oxidation. All the foods you eat should be non-toxic and non-polluting to your body.  They should contain no synthetic flavours, colors, preservatives or other additives used to ‘enhance’ them cosmetically.  Stay away from convenience foods. Try to vary the foods you choose from day to day and week to week.  All through our evolution the human body has adapted to a wide range of foods offering a broad spectrum of nutrients. Use fresh garlic and herbs often.  They bring high-level support for cellular regeneration and immune support. Eat what you enjoy and enjoy what you eat.  Eating is one of life’s great pleasures – make it one of yours. make way for a new lifestyle Eating for ageless aging leads most people to a totally new way of living. You become more alert and more active. You will probably sleep less yet far better than before. This is because your whole system will be far clearer of toxicity than before and you will need less time for tissue repair and restoration than you do on a normal diet. You will also probably find that you are better able to deal with stress than ever. This way of eating provides you with high levels of potassium and rapidly restores the sodium-potassium balance in most people. This leads to increased resistance to fatigue and a greater feeling of calm stability day in day out. It may also set you slightly apart from your gravy-eating, hard-drinking friends and may even have them feeling slightly suspicious of you in the beginning. But it has been my experience that as soon as they find you are not trying to sell them anything - that you have a live-and-let-live attitude to whatever they do - they show a similar respect for your new lifestyle. In fact, the people who have been the most resistant to what you are doing and the most opinionated are very often the ones who are first to become intrigued about what an ageless aging lifestyle might offer them. And they are usually the ones with the energy and interest to carry it out. Day 1 RAW DISHES: melon; cauliflower and tomatoes mixed with red peppers and lettuce salad topped with Avocado Delight Dressing (see blow). COOKED DISHES: Steamed fish; wok-fried beans and peas; brown rice. Day 2 RAW DISHES: lamb's lettuce, celeriac and wild-herb salad topped with chopped egg dressing; fresh pears and plumped raisins. COOKED DISHES: Garlic Chicken Soup; steamed baby carrots and basil; young peas with mint. Day 3 RAW DISHES: mushrooms, watercress and chicory salad topped with Basil and More Basil Dressing; Mulled Stuffed Apples (see below). COOKED DISHES:  Fabulous Fish Soup. Day 4 RAW DISHES: `Sunburst' platter of avocado, beetroot, cos lettuce, mushrooms, tomatoes, celery and peppers served with raw humus (see below). COOKED DISHES: carrot and coriander soup; or venison burgers; Scottish oatcakes; Pineapple Blackberry Frappe. Day 5 RAW DISHES: `Jungle Slaw' salad made from cabbage, tender green beans, carrots, spring onions, red or yellow pepper and almonds served with a citrus dressing. COOKED DISHES:  Lightly grilled salmon and steamed green beans. Day 6 RAW DISHES: gazpacho; pineapple salad stuffed with orange, mango, papaya and strawberries and topped with coconut. COOKED DISHES: Hand Made Sausages (see below). Day 7 RAW DISHES: `Sandstone Loaf' made from carrots, lemon juice, almonds, pumpkin seeds, tahini and herbs; apple and ginger salad; home made blackberry sorbet. COOKED DISHES: Flax Crackers (see below) with humus. small meals For breakfast - or for that matter instead of lunch or supper when you want a small meal - you can't do better than a bowl of fruit muesli. If you have never tasted real muesli (and it bears no resemblance to the flaky sweet stuff you can buy on the shelves of supermarkets) you have a real treat ahead of you. Fruit muesli was the invention of Swiss physician Max Bircher-Benner who devised it as the perfect light meal. It is a delicious and easy-to-digest completely uncooked dish which can contain all of the essential vitamins and minerals, and which is an excellent source of high-quality complete proteins and essential fatty acids. It can provide you with sustaining energy but will never lie heavily in your stomach. And it can be made low in calories. Real muesli (often called Birchermuesli after its inventor) is not a grain-based but a fruit-based dish with only a very small quantity of top-quality fresh wholegrain flakes in it. It is usually made with apples and oats but there are so many varieties which you can make, calling on whatever fresh or dried fruits and whatever kinds of grains, nuts and seeds you have available, that you could quite literally eat it twice a day all the year round and never get tired of it. Children absolutely adore Birchermuesli both as a complete breakfast and as a sweet after a main meal. A small bowl of muesli in the morning will keep you going all the way to lunch with none of the `elevenses slump' that has many people reaching for a cup of coffee and a pastry or a chocolate bar. It is also an excellent food to eat in the evening since it is so easy to digest that it never interferes with sleep. I do a lot of traveling and for many years I dreaded having to stay in hotels because the food available in so many hotel dining-rooms is so poor. I have got into the habit of carrying with me a small `muesli bag' with a hand grater in it plus some grain flakes and minced nuts and a small bowl so I can make my own breakfast or supper whenever I want and not be forced to eat what I don't want just because there is nothing else. Here is the basic recipe: bircher muesli For each person you'll need: I level tablespoon rolled oats soaked in 4 tablespoons water I heaped tablespoon raisins or sultanas I tablespoon lemon juice 3 tablespoons natural unsweetened yogurt I large apple ½ banana I teaspoon raw honey (if desired) or pure stevia to taste I tablespoon minced hazelnuts and almonds or other mixed seeds and nuts I pinch cinnamon (if desired) Soak the rolled oats and raisins in water, preferably overnight. This begins to break down the starch present in the grains and turn it into natural sugar so it is easily assimilated. If you have no time to soak the grains then simply mix with the water (you will need slightly less water in this case) and carry on immediately. Wash the apple(s) and remove core and stem but don't peel. Then, using a stainless-steel hand grater or a food processor, grate the apple into the mixture and, stirring, add lemon juice to protect it from discoloring. Cut the banana into small cubes, add to the mixture with the honey (if desired) and mix with yogurt. Sprinkle the top with the minced nuts and a little cinnamon if you like. Instead of rolled oats you can use other cereal flakes such as barley, millet or buckwheat. These are available from wholefood shops. I find I don't usually add honey to my muesli because it is so beautifully sweet already, thanks to the soaked grains and fruit. You can also make muesli with soft fruit such as strawberries or raspberries, loganberries, red and black currants, blackberries or blueberries as well as with apricots, cherries, peaches, plums or greengages. Or you can mix your fruits together. Also you can make the muesli from dried fruit which has been soaked for twelve hours or overnight in spring water. But make sure you get sun-dried not sulfur dried fruits to which no glucose has been added (it is commonly added to figs for instance) or you can end up with a gastrointestinal upset. seasoning and spices Make use of all of the wonderful culinary herbs that are available: And the list of seductive possibilities seems almost endless: caraway, fennel, dill, chervil, parsley, lovage - the Umberiferae; summer savory, marjoram, the mints, rosemary, and thyme-the labiates, which have a strong aroma and are particularly useful for seasoning; the Liliaceae such as garlic, onions, chives and leeks; and three of my favorites, basil and tarragon and horseradish. Herbs have a special role to play in any ageless aging regime. They contain pharmacologically active substances such as volatile oils, tannins, bitter factors, secretins, balsams, resins, mucilages, glycosides and organic vegetable acids each of which can contribute to overall health in a different way. The tannins, for instance, which occur in many common kitchen herbs, are astringent and have an anti-inflammatory action on the digestive system. They help inhibit fermentation and decomposition. The secretins stimulate the secretion of pancreatic enzymes - particularly important for the complete breakdown of proteins in foods to make them available for bodily use. Organic acids have an antibiotic action and are helpful in the digestion of fats and the bitter factors, which are found in good quantity in rosemary, marjoram and fennel. They also act as a tonic to the smooth muscles of the gut and boost secretion of digestive enzymes. Use herbs lavishly in your meals and you will find you can create the most remarkable combinations of subtle flavors and aromas. drink yourself younger Coffee, although not completely forbidden on any serious program of ageless aging, is not something to drink daily. The occasional cup after dinner is not likely to do much harm. More than that and you are really undermining your potential for age-retardation not only because it contains mutagenic and carcinogenic compounds which cause oxy-stress and free radical damage but also because regular coffee tends to make cadmium (one of the heavy metals) build up in your system and can interfere with proper pancreatic functioning. It also leeches calcium from the bones. Tea is OK in moderation - no more than a cup or two a day - but there are other drinks which are not only good for you, they can be highly enjoyable as well. Alcohol is another substance you want to go easy on. Not only is it very high in calories yet practically worthless in terms of the nutrients it supplies, it also causes your liver to produce one of the most potent cross-linkers known - acetaldehyde. A glass or two of wine can be easily accommodated. More than that as a daily intake is likely to seriously undermine your effort. And make sure it is good wine. The run of the mill vin de table is full of toxic substances which your cells can do without. You'll find some delicious mixtures of herbs in ready-made tea bags if you comb through a few delicatessens and healthfood stores. Some of my favorites have names like Cinnamon, Rose, Almond Sunset, Creamy French Vanilla, and Red Zinger. They are great to drink for pleasure and refreshment the way most people drink coffee and ordinary tea. But there are others which are quite wonderful simply because they affect the body in specific ways. Lemon verbena, for instance, is a refreshing sedative, chamomile soothes the digestive tract, and both horsetail and solidago (goldenrod) are excellent natural diuretics. The teas I like best just before bed are orange blossom, which you make by boiling a few blossoms for 2-3 minutes in two cups of water, red bergamot and lemon peel, all of which are natural sedatives. This last tea comes from an Italian tradition. You make it by peeling the outer yellow skin off a lemon (which has been washed well) with a potato peeler. Pour boiling water over this and let steep for 5 minutes. Then strain and drink. a few recipes to play with Avocado Delight Dressing 1 avocado, peeled and stoned Juice of 1 lemon Juice of ½ orange 1 small onion, chopped finely 1 garlic clove, chopped finely Handful of fresh herbs – mint, parsley or basil Freshly ground black pepper to taste Blend all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and serve. Italian Herb Dressing 100ml extra-virgin oliv oil 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice 1-2oz fresh basil, chopped 1 tsp Marigold Swiss Vegetable Buillon or Rapunzel Organic Vegetable Bouillon Powder Freshly ground black pepper to taste Mix all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth, adjusting the flavour as necessary. Garlic Chicken Soup (serves 1) 150g lean, skinless chicken breast, but into small cubes 1 tsp fresh chopped garlic 1 level teaspoon Marigold Swiss Vegetable Bouillon or Rapunzel Organic Vegetable Bouillon Powder 2 teaspoons chopped parsley and/or ½ teaspoon lemongrass or ½ teaspoon mild curry powder 180 ml water Place all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil.  Simmer for 3-5 minutes and serve. Fabulous Fish Soup (serves 1) 360ml water 1 teaspoon Marigold Swiss Vegetable Buillon or Rapunzel Organic Vegetable Bouillon Powder ½ tsp fresh chopped garlic ½ tsp chopped onion 1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil or ½ tsp dried basil 1 cup broccoli 150g white fish ¼ tsp paprika Himalayan or Malvern salt to taste Pepper, to taste Put the bouillon powder, water, garlic, onion and basil in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.  Add the broccoli and cook for 5 minutes with the lid on.  Place the rish on top of the broccoli and sprinkel with paprika, salt and pepper.  Put the lid on and cook for another 5 minutes. Raw Humus 2 cups sprouted chick peas Juice of 3 lemons 1 tsp Marigold Swiss Vegetable Buillon or Rapunzel Organic Vegetable Bouillon Powder 1 clove garlic, finely chopped 3 tbsp tahini 3 tbsp chopped spring onions or chives Water to thin if too thick Put the ingredients, except the onions or chives, in a food processor or blender and blend thoroughly.  Top with the chives or onions. Hand-made Sausages 350g lean minced pork, chicken, lamb, beef, venison or wild boar 1 tsp Himalayan or Malvern salt, to taste 2 tbsp gram flour (chickpea flour) 4 cloves garlic (optional) 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, coriander or sage ½ large onion, finely chopped Combine all the ingredients in a big mixing bowl and ix thoroughly with your hands.  Refrigerate until well chilled then separate into patties and cook in an oiled skilled until crunchy on the surface and cooked through. Flax Crackers 240g faxseed meal (or buy whole flaxseeds and grind them) 240ml water 30ml tamari or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or Soy Sauce Himalayan or Malvern salt, to taste Fresh minced herbs A little chopped garlic Ginger, chilli powder, or cayenne pepper (optional) Combine the flaxseed meal with the water and let it soak for 1 ½ hours.  The water will change to a sort of gelatinous state.  Add a little more water if necessary, you want it to be gooey but not too runny or too thick.  Add the tamari, salt, herbs and garlic (or other flavourings).  Blend together.  Spread the mixture out, about 1/8 inch thick, and cut into squares.  Carefully lift the squares onto a wire mesh and bake in a slow oven until crunchy.  You can also make them in a dehydrator - dehydrate them for 4-6 hours, turn the mixture and dehydrate for a further 3-4 hours. Mulled Stuffed Apples (serves 2) Most of the nutritional value of an apple lies in its skin, or just below it, so wash apples well but don’t peel them. Softish apples are best for this recipe as their insides have to be scooped out. 100ml grape juice or red wine ½ tsp cinnamon 2 cloves ¼  tsp nutmeg 1 crushed white cardamom pod ¼ tsp allspice 75g blanched almonds 2 large apples Squeeze of lemon juice handful dates or raisins ‘Mull’ the grape juice or wine by putting it in a bowl with the spices and leaving for at least an hour.  Discard the cloves and cardamom and blend the remaining mixture with the almonds in a food processor or blender.  Slice the tops off the apples and keep them.  Remove the cores, saving small pieces to plug the bottoms.  Scoop out the apple pulp, leaving a shell about 1cm thick. Lightly blend the pulp with the juice and the almond mixture until smooth, adding a squeeze of lemon juice.  If the mixture is not thick enough, add a few more ground almonds.  Chop the dates or raisins and fill the apple shells with the dried fruit and almond mixture.  Replace the ‘lids’. Or, make stuffed apples with apple sauce and blackberries.  Blend the apple pulp with a little lemon juice, stevia and spices then combine it with the blackberries and spoon into the apple shells. Pineapple Blackberry Frappe This makes a wonderfully refreshing dessert as it stands, or it can be chiled to serve as a cool sorbet on hot summer days. 2 cups fresh pineapple chunks ½ cup blackberries Juice of ½ lime Place all the ingredients in a blender and liquidise.  Serve immediately.

My Love Affair With Plants

My Love Affair With Plants

For more than a million years, our ancestors lived with herbs. They cooked with them, healed with them, used them to scent their bodies and sanctify their prayers. On a molecular level, the human body recognizes herbs when we take them. Get to know the nature of a few specific plants and they will enhance your life immeasurably. In a very real sense, we can come to know an herb the way a woman knows her lover. The spirit of a plant meets the spirit of a human. Expect magic. You won’t be disappointed. A FINE ROMANCE My own passion for herbs began when I discovered the help they could bring me and my family. Simple plants such as nettle or golden rod (Solidago virgauria) have a natural cleansing and diuretic effect on my body. Traveling on airplanes, my ankles used to swell up. I discovered when I got home and made a cup of golden rod or nettle tea, the swelling would vanish. Fascinated, I began to read about what herbs can do for the immune system. I began to experiment with other plants—goldenseal and echinacea, burdock and shiitake mushrooms. I began to give herbs to my whole family whenever any of us threatened to come down with flu or a cold. I discovered that, provided we took them in time, one or a combination of plants would clear the problem before the full force of any illness hit. A doctor friend, Gordon Latto, taught me that gargling with red sage and sticking a clove of garlic in its paper shell in between the teeth and the inside of the mouth for a few hours a day would clear a sore throat and nip throat infections in the bud. I began to wonder just how many other remarkable things plants could do for us. THE SUPERB ADAPTOGENS I was lucky enough to meet with the famous Russian scientist I.I. Brekhman, expert in adaptogenic herbs, who won the Lenin Prize for Science. From him I learned that the adaptogens such as ginseng, eluthrococcus or Siberian Ginseng, and Suma from South America strengthen a person’s ability to resist illness as well as making it possible for us to work and play longer and harder without experiencing the negative effects of prolonged stress. That was thirty years ago. Since then I have come to use herbs and flowers, fresh raw juices and vegetables, water and tender loving care to help the body protect itself from illness, heal a sickness when it struck, calm an agitated mind, induce slumber when unable to sleep, clear depression, and care for my skin. I have also learned to use herbs to decorate my house and sanctify my working space. I also fell in love with photographing them. Meanwhile, I raised four children without antibiotics or over-the-counter drugs thanks to the blessings of herbs. DAZZLING POWER The classic definition of an herb is ‘a non-woody plant which dies down to its roots each winter’. This definition is far too limiting. It was probably made up by 19th century European botanists who had never seen the rainforest in which, of course, there is no winter to die back in. Neither had they ever heard of woody trees and shrubs such as hawthorn, ginkgo and elder, which provide us with some of the best-selling herbs on the market these days. My own definition of an herb is simply a medicinal plant. It can come from any climate and be a leaf, a bark, a flower or a root. It can be home-grown or wild—a weed, a spice, a plant which is used for its healing, culinary or beautifying properties. So powerful are the health-enhancing capacities of herbs that a vast number of common prescription drugs have been derived from a mere 90 species of plants. According to Professor Norman Farnsworth—leading American expert in pharmacognosy at University of Illinois —74% of common drugs have been developed directly out of traditional native herb folklore. In the United States alone, the annual sales of prescription drugs developed from plant products used by tribal cultures is already in excess of $6 billion. Unlike prescription drugs, whose side-effects can be devastating, most herbs are both safe and simple to use. Most carry no side-effects at all. MEDICAL FAILURE The way we have thought about health and healing for the past century—what the experts call our biomedical model—has come to the limits of its usefulness. Conventional medical practices view the body as a collections of structures—bones and blood, cells and tissues. Common medical treatment consists of acting on these structures in a symptomatic way. Doctors give one drug to lower blood pressure or cholesterol, another to get rid of headaches or put you to sleep. Whether these drugs are medically prescribed or over-the-counter products, virtually all carry negative side effects. Most have no concern with genuine healing. They instead focus on ‘managing’ illness by suppressing symptoms. Herbal treatment, like all of the great natural approaches to health through history, looks at things differently. It insists that at every level of biological organisation—from chromosomes in our DNA all the way up to our eyes and toes, stomach and liver—the body has a stunning capacity for self-treatment. It is capable of removing damaged structures and renewing them on its own. The natural capacity of living organisms as complex as ours to regenerate themselves is something that symptomatic drug-based medicine ignores altogether. Yet self-regeneration lies at the very core of using natural foods, water, air and movement therapies, and of course herbs, to strengthen, balance or heal. Chinese medicine is functional medicine; it did not develop along structural lines as Western 20th century medicine did. So is Ayurvedic and Unani medicine from India, and nature-cure in the West. The Chinese pharmacopoeia is the richest in the world. Chinese doctors value plants for their ability to strengthen the body’s functioning, heighten its own defences and improve immunity. They use herbs, as we are only now beginning to in the West, to extend longevity, to increase resistance to illness, to heighten energy, and to calm disturbed emotions. BRING MAGIC INTO YOUR LIFE There is an endless parade of different ways you can use herbs. In the health food store and mail order catalogue you can find a confusing array of capsules, pills, tablets, extracts, tinctures and ‘whole herbs’ or ‘bulk herbs’, none of which seem to relate to the ‘infusion’ you have decided you would like to take. And what about the herbs you have growing in your garden? Here is a rough guide to finding your way through the confusion. First, find yourself a reputable supplier. I have a passion for iHerb.com, since the variety of herbal products they offer are the best and cheapest anywhere, and they ship worldwide. Personally, I’m wary of buying herbs in health food stores or pharmacies unless they come from a manufacturer or supplier I know. With a supplier you trust and with whom you can discuss your needs, you can be sure you are getting a good potency and that the herbs have not been sitting in a cupboard somewhere for months. BULK/DRIED/WHOLE HERBS What you are buying is a bag or box of a specific weight of dried herb, either in its whole form, crushed or powdered. This is the best way to purchase herbs if you want to make teas (infusions), decoctions, or your own capsules, or if you want to use them in potpourris and sachets. It is also about the cheapest way to buy dried herbs. TINCTURES A tincture uses alcohol diluted in water to draw out the plant’s chemical constituents and preserve them. You can buy tinctures by the bottle and they are pretty potent. You take from several drops to 1 teaspoon or more of a tincture in a little water several times a day if needed. Tinctures are best bought from a reputable supplier. You can make them yourself, but the process is less accurate than when they are professionally produced. I buy many herbs in tincture form as I find them so convenient. You will sometimes find a figure such as 1:4 on a bottle of tincture. This gives you the ratio of the weight of the herb—in this instance 1 part of herb—to alcohol/water mix. An herbalist may suggest you take a specific ratio in which case your supplier can advise, but for general usage you don’t need to know the ratio. EXTRACTS Extracts are easy to confuse with tinctures. They are far more concentrated. They aim to contain all the active chemicals of the plant, not only those that will dissolve in alcohol. Extraction processes vary from pressure rolling to heat treatment to vacuum extraction. These are best left to the experts. Extracts have a limited shelf life. They should be kept in the fridge. Herbalists often prescribe extracts during an illness, rather than using them for prevention. Extracts can also be useful to add to a cream or salve for external use: ¼ extract to ¾ base. They are pretty strong in their action. TABLETS, PILLS & CAPSULES Tablets, pills and capsules are often more readily than the loose dried herbs themselves. Tablets, pills and capsules usually contain the whole herb, not just the constituents extracted in a tincture or infusion. Therefore, in taking them, you are making use of the synergy in action between all the constituents of each plant. Choose those from a reputable manufacturer/supplier. Tablets are made from dried plant material—leaves, roots, bark and/or flowers—mixed with a base, sometimes lactose, both to help you hold them in your hand to take them and to aid absorption in the stomach. Pills are, basically, tablets with a coating. If the plant is sticky, smelly, or tastes dreadful—or all three—it is more likely to come in pill form than tablet form as the protein or sugar coating disguises less pleasant aspects of the plant. Usually I avoid these, since sugar in any form is far from beneficial. Capsules, made of gelatine or a vegetarian equivalent, are filled with dried herbs—even the stickier, smellier ones. They need to be stored in a cool, dry place, but they preserve herbs well. You can buy gelatine capsules from a chemist and fill them yourself, either with herbs you have dried yourself or with dried herbs you have bought in bulk. The standard 00 size capsule holds about ½ gram (500mg) of herb. Make sure the herb is ground into as fine a powder as possible before filling, so that it can be easily absorbed by the body. A WONDROUS WORLD Plants speak volumes when you know how to listen. One of the great joys of our herbal tradition has been the love affair that takes place when the spirit of an herb meets the spirit of the person using it. It is an old art by which, using your intuition and trusting your instinct, you can move towards an awareness of the central nature of a plant and how best it can be used. For example—the herb Leonurus cardiaca is a powerful strengthener of the heart, reducing tachycardia and hypertension and promoting normal heart action. The essence of its personality, however, is better expressed in its common name—motherwort. This herb has the ability to bring a sense of absolute security—the way a baby feels lying in the arms of its mother—during periods of deep and unsettling change. Every plant has secret wisdom and power. It will tell you its tales and offer its richness to you as you open your heart to it.

Anti Aging Skin Care  Lean Machine Or Sugar Baby

Anti Aging Skin Care Lean Machine Or Sugar Baby

Your skin will not age by accident, or just because time goes by. Skin loses its tone and texture whenever the energy order—the psychological and biological integrity of the living matrix, that whole interconnectedness that is your body—is undermined. All sorts of stuff can cause this to happen. But nothing is more sinister and insidious than chronic high levels of blood sugar and insulin, which threaten most people over the age of 25 or 30. Stop them in your body, and you will not only slow skin aging. You can actually reverse its signs. THE GREAT DESTROYER Sugar actually destroys your skin. And I’m not just talking about the white stuff that sits in bowls. Most of the foods that people eat these days—from pasta and bread to packaged cereals and bagels—flood the bloodstream with glucose, within a very few minutes of entering the body. This carries serious consequences for the skin. CHECK OUT YOUR ANCESTORS The reasons for all of this are genetic, and very simple. Despite this fact, for the last 70 years, they have eluded most so-called scientists, nutritionists and medical doctors. Here’s the truth: Grain-based and sugary foods are recent interventions. For over a million years, humans never ate them. Because genetic adaptation is a slow process—it can take one hundred thousand years, believe it or not, for a significant alteration in a gene to take place—our bodies lack the ability to deal with these foods in large quantities. Yet grains and sugar-rich foods—many riddled with junk fats and chemicals to boot—make up the largest portion of most people’s diets these days. When our bodies are forced to handle them (and most governments, doctors and food-manufacturers are still trying to sell us the idea that low-fat, high-carb diets are good for our health), our skin—in fact our whole body—rebels. CUT THE CARBS What form this insurrection takes depends on just how vulnerable we are genetically. It can show up as adult-onset or type 2 diabetes; obesity; energy swings; raised HDL cholesterol; or chronic fatigue. Eating lots of these kinds of carbs and sugars can also cause—and few people or even doctors are as yet aware of this—all sorts of common degenerative diseases, from cancer to arthritis and coronary heart disease. When it comes to skin, the sugar monster gets busy fabricating wrinkles, sags, puffy faces, lackluster complexions. This creates a situation where, having learned all this, you wonder whether you have the energy to do anything about it. THE WRINKLE MONSTER Sugar—the wrinkle monster—has two faces. To escape his insidious attacks, you need to address both. First, there’s the all-encompassing glucose/insulin battle you need to win. After years of living the way most of us do—on convenience foods, fabricated from grains, cereals, and an infinite number of sugars and syrups—this undermines good genetic health. The other face of the sugar monster focuses on the damage that excess glucose does to the body’s proteins. It attacks skin cells and collagen fibers, producing what is known as advanced glycosylation end products. These nasties, conveniently known as AGEs, are like terrorists that wreak havoc within the living matrix, causing collagen fibers to lose their ability to maintain order. AGEs do this by making collagen fibers to cross link. This results in the formation of wrinkles, sags and bags on your face and elsewhere. WIN THE AGING WAR It’s not just one or two anti-aging battles you need to win to make a significant difference to your skin, regardless of your age. Cutting out the high-carb stuff from your diet needs to reduce your blood sugar and insulin levels. By doing so this counters the formation of AGEs—as well as detoxifying your skin and your body as a whole. Radical though it may sound doing this will set you on the right track both to skin rejuvenation and to whole body health and vitality. Of course, knowing this stuff is not enough. You have to take action. Every skin improvement and de-aging process is inexorably woven together with all of the other within your entire living matrix. If you want powerful anti aging skin care, you need to address the whole shebang. By altering the way you eat, live, and look after your body internally and externally, your skin not only looks younger and more beautiful. It will bring your whole being access to levels of energy, emotional balance and well-being that turn the dream of living a full and creative life into reality. This is how to create a revolution in the look and health of skin. And here’s the great news: This can also bring you beauty at the deepest level, transforming your whole experience of yourself in the process.

Secret Powers Of Plants

Secret Powers Of Plants

Herbs are hardy beasts. Like street kids who grow up in tough surroundings, these plants are survivors. Most have had to withstand harsh weather and little nourishment from the soil. This helps clear out the weaklings, making their genetic strains stronger. Their strength has also led them to develop an array of potent plant powers—phytochemicals: flavonoids and saponins, tannins and phytosterols. HEALING FOR YOU These plant chemicals, which play a beneficial role in the developing herb, also bring us health when we use them. Take bitters, for instance. You find them in herbs like dandelion, mugwort, gentian, horehound, burdock, and yellow dock. Botanists believe bitter elements probably help protect the plant from being eaten in the wild. Bitter herbs are wonderful for improving digestion in our bodies. They help heal the lining of the gut, improve the way digestive enzymes, juices and hormones flow, and stimulate the flow of bile. Bitter herbs seem to validate that old saying that the worse something tastes, the better it is for you. MIND BENDERS Alkaloids—plant chemicals which botanists tell us help regulate plant growth, while discouraging damage from predators—can exert powerful effects on our minds when we use them. Coffee is full of alkaloids. So are opium, black tea, cocoa, and tobacco. All of these plants are considered sacred by our ancestors, going back thousands of years. Many immune-enhancing plants, so useful in protecting from illness and clearing infection, are also rich in alkaloid compounds. Take echinacea and goldenseal, which I have used for half a century to heal my family when they were threatened with infection of any kind. Meanwhile, gums and resins such as myrrh, pine, and the Ayurvedic remedy guggul, taken from branches and woods, carry the life blood of a tree or shrub. They transport nutrients to wherever the plant needs them. Many of these plants, including the wonderful guggul, can be used to enhance our own circulation and even to rebalance good and bad cholesterol. EAT YOUR COLOR The brilliant colors of flowers, stems, leaves and fruits are not just beautiful to look at. They are rich in flavonoids—phytochemicals responsible for vivid yellows and oranges and reds, that attract bees and other insects for pollination. Such glorious living hues also attract animals. Then the beasts who eat these plants unwittingly act as carriers for their seeds. Colorful flavonoids bring to us humans great anti-aging benefits. They are powerful antioxidants against free-radical damage—even more powerful than the well-recognised Vitamins A, C, E and the minerals selenium and zinc. Plants rich in flavonoids help protect us from degeneration, they strengthen our blood vessels and the collagen in our skin, they guard our cells from oxidation destruction, they calm inflammation, and help keep the body free of water retention. Some flavonoids can even help clear muscle spasm. SUPERB SAPONINS The saponins which you find in roots and leaves lather like soap. Some are useful expectorants for coughs. Others help us regulate our hormones or counteract stress. Meanwhile, the essential oils of herbs, found in leaves and flowers, fruits and barks, help plants like mint, bergamot, lavender and ginger attract pollination thanks to their signature fragrances. And they protect these plants from disease thanks to their anti-microbial actions. In our lives, some essential oils make it possible for us to create beautiful perfumes and incense. Others have antiseptic actions, others improve digestion, stimulate circulation, improve the look and texture of skin and do a hundred other good deeds. The anthraquinones, found in the roots and leaves of herbs like yellow dock, protect plants from fungal and bacterial destruction. For us, plants rich in these yellow phyto-chemicals can help stimulate bile production, boost a sluggish liver, and improve digestion. It is fascinating to become familiar with the actions of phytochemicals. The more you learn about them, the more you realize just how all-encompassing herbal healing can be.

Fruit Glorious Fruit

Fruit Glorious Fruit

Somehow fruits seem to have have earned themselves a bad name. Why? Because fruits contain fructose—fruit sugar. Nonetheless, it’s fructose that gives glorious organic navel oranges, blueberries, apples, and golden kiwis their marvelous sweetness. And the right amount of organically grown, whole fruits do a lot to keep us well. Fruit plays an important part in any high-raw way of eating. These colorful gifts of nature cleanse the body of the toxicity we absorb from our environment, the water we drink, and the dreadful packaged convenience foods people eat. That’s why fruits are so valuable to any serious detox program. THEN AND NOW So what’s the problem with fructose? First of all, there is evidence which indicates that people who eat too much fruit can make themselves vulnerable to chronic problems like insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity. And this is important. For most fruits we eat today contain between 30 and 50 times the amount of fructose compared to the fruit our hunter-gatherer forefathers munched on. This has come about because, during the 20th century, enormous hybridization projects continue to make fruits sweeter and sweeter. As a result, not only has the incidence of chronic illnesses—from heart disease and diabetes to cancer and mental disorders—exploded in developed countries: So has our consumption of sugar in its many forms—of which fructose is one. If you are someone with high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, insulin or leptin resistance or hypertension, then it is best to limit your fruit intake so you only get, say, 15 grams of fructose a day. How do you do this? Choose your fruits carefully so that most of them are low-fructose. If you do not fall into these categories, you should be able to eat a lot more fruit and have it do you nothing but good. That is, of course, provided the fruits you choose are organic and therefore not sprayed with chemicals. Make sure they have not been GMO grown. Under no circumstances do you want to put genetically modified foods of any kind into your body. All GMO crops are dangerous, despite all the corporate hype designed to make us think otherwise. RESEARCH, RESEARCH But findings about the effects of fruit eating are contradictory, to say the least. The British Medical Journal is soon to publish three observational studies that examined the effects of fruit-eating on human health. These studies analyzed the diets of almost 200,000 people between 1984 and 2008—none of whom had indications of heart disease, diabetes or cancer when the studies began. On completion, the studies indicated that, far from fruits predisposing us to degenerative diseases, some fruits including grapes, blueberries and apples may actually reduce the risk of diabetes. This is great news and somewhat unexpected, since apples and grapes contain a lot of fructose. But beware. Drinking juices made from these fruits that are bought, rather than being homemade from fresh produce, do contribute to the development of the same diseases that eating whole fruit can help prevent. Steer clear of all packaged and tinned fruit juices and fruit drinks. One aspect of fructose is as dangerous as hell—high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). If you value your health and the health of your children you’ll want to avoid it at all costs. But avoiding it is not easy. HFCS is added to just about every packaged food and drink you buy. So read every label on every packaged food or drink you buy, and reject every food or drink containing it. HFCS is deadly stuff. A highly processed form of liquid sugar extracted by a nasty chemical solvent called glutaraldehyde, not only is HFCS frequently contaminated with mercury. Putting it into the body is a major cause of obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, mood disorders, and hyperactivity in children. A DEVIL IN THE DETAILS High-fructose corn syrup is similar in composition to sucrose, with levels of around 45% glucose to 55% fructose. And, as with sucrose, its harmful effects are concealed from view. It does not raise blood sugar, as it is processed by the liver. There it promptly turns into fat. In 1978, HFCS was brought in as a substitute for sugar in soft drinks. This quickly became a real game-changer, but not in a good way. By the year 2000, sugar consumption in America increased by 25 pounds per person per year, nearly ALL of it in the form of HFCS. These days the average American consumes a massive 35 pounds of HFCS each year, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It’s no coincidence that the obesity rate in the US has reached epidemic proportions worldwide. You’ll find HFCS in thousands of grocery items, even in places you might never suspect—such as pizza sauce, salad dressings, foods from sodas, drinks and sweets to sauces, breads, and delicatessen foods like smoked salmon, luncheon meats and salami. Farcically, HFCS is often labeled "all natural" because fructose is found in fruit—even though it is mass-factory-produced, using a process which dramatically increases the fructose content of corn syrup. Fructose in these protucts bears little resemblance to fructose found in fresh fruit. It also lacks the fiber, antioxidants and nutrients found in fresh fruit. As pediatric specialist and childhood obesity expert Robert Lustig puts it, high-fructose corn syrup is “a poison all by itself”. Lustig doesn’t distinguish between plain sugar and HFCS when it comes to health perils—they are “equally dangerous”, he insists, like two sides of the same coin. And what’s so insidious about HFCS is that it is sold to the public as a “healthy alternative” to regular sugar. You should avoid it at all costs. MY OWN FRUIT EXPERIMENT Most of you know that I am a passionate fan of organic raw food and have been for almost half a century. A high-raw way of eating in my mid-twenties healed me from so many illnesses contracted as a result of being raised on junk food throughout most of my unpredictable childhood. A few weeks ago, Aaron and I decided to experiment by returning to being on an all-raw fruits and vegetables diet for a period of six weeks. We wanted to check out what, if any, ill effects eating an all raw diet containing lots of fresh, organic fruits would have on us. The results of our little experiment have turned out to be excellent. We ate a lot of fruit. We put it in our salads, we made juice from a mixture of fruits and included in it much of the pulp produced from the juicing. We loved the way this made us look and feel. I’m happy to report that the results of our little experiment have been nothing but good. Like vegetables and herbs, fruits are not only a storehouse for vitamins and minerals; they boast high levels of phytochemicals. These powerhouses for health and vitality are not nutrients like vitamins and minerals. Yet they carry colored plant factors which play an important role in our health. A good supply of these phyto-nutrients helps minimize the incidence of cancer and heart disease and protect from degenerative conditions associated with aging, such as inflammation of the joints, loss of memory and concentration. They even help slow the aging process itself. Large quantities of these plant factors with many different names are found in common fruits, from berries, oranges, lemons and grapes to cantaloupe, kiwis, cranberries and cherries. However, in any diet based on manufactured convenience foods, they are scarce as hen’s teeth. FRUITS CAN BE FABULOUS Berries, grapes and cherries as well as citrus fruits are excellent sources of water-soluble phyto-chemicals known as flavonoids. Flavonoids guard the integrity of collagen within the body. They work together with vitamin C and—as do many of the other phyto-nutrients—enhance the positive effects of antioxidant vitamins, improving the function and the integrity of tiny blood vessels known as capillaries, which deliver nutrients and oxygen to our cells. This helps raise overall energy. It also helps keep skin smooth and elastic, and protects against bruising while improving memory and eyesight. Phyto-nutrients often carry weird names like catechin, quercetin and hesperidin. Among the more than 20,000 known, hesperidin, rutin, quercetin, catechin and pycnogenol are especially important. Catechin reduces allergic reactions by calming histamine release in the body. Rutin helps guard the integrity and health of capillaries, veins and arteries, as well as the skin itself. Many phytochemicals protect our health by interfering with or blocking specific disease processes. They do this either by acting as antioxidants and preventing free radical damage, or by inhibiting enzymes which promote the development of diseases like cancer. Some plant factors found in fruits and vegetables clear our cells of toxins and other damaging substances, such as herbicides and pesticides we take in from our environment. HEALTH HELPERS At Tufts University in the United States, scientists developed a method of quantifying the anti-oxidant power of specific fruits and vegetables by measuring their ability to quench free radicals in a laboratory test tube. To test a food’s oxygen radical absorbance capacity, called the ORAC test, scientists have been able to categorize a fruit or vegetable according to its overall anti-oxidant power. Fruits like blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and raspberries are at the top of the list. These can be highly protective of our health. While we’re talking of lists, here is a list of some of the most common fruits, indicating how much fructose is in each. Become familiar with it and, given the state of your own body, you can easily make your own decision about what kind and how much of each fruit suits you best, as well as how much you want to eat of it. FRUIT SERVING GRAMS OF FRUCTOSE Lemon 1 medium 0.6 Passionfruit 1 medium 0.9 Apricot 1 medium 1.3 Raspberries 1 cup 3.0 Kiwi 1 medium 3.4 Cherries 1 cup 3.8 Strawberries 1 cup 3.8 Pink grapefruit ½ medium 4.3 Nectarine 1 medium 5.4 Peach 1 medium 5.9 Orange 1 medium 6.1 Banana 1 medium 7.1 Apple 1 medium 9.5 Persimmon 1 medium 10.6 Pear 1 medium 11.8 Grapes 1 cup 12.4 Mango 1 medium 16.2 Here are my suggestions on how to get the very best from fruits, now and always: If you know you have insulin or leptin resistance, suffer from food cravings and are overweight, pick your fruits from those with the lowest levels of fructose and limit your fruit intake to around 15 grams of fructose a day. If you are not troubled by any of these conditions, you can experiment by eating fruits which give you from 20 to 40 grams of fructose a day and work out by trial and error what levels of fructose best work for you. Always eat your fruits whole, if possible. If you choose to juice them yourself, make sure you keep the valuable pulp from the juicing process and add a good quantity of it back to the juice. Go for organic fruits. You might even try growing a lot of your fruit in your garden if you have the space. Never eat GMO fruits—something difficult to ascertain in most countries these days, since corporate interests have lobbied hard to prevent GMO labeling. This is another reason to choose organic. Never eat or drink anything with high-fructose corn syrup in it. It’s deadly stuff—so read labels carefully. Fruits are one of nature’s most glorious gifts to us. Enjoy them.

A Passion For Herbs

A Passion For Herbs

For more than a million years we humans have lived with herbs. We’ve cooked with them, healed with them, scented our homesand sanctified our prayers with them. On a molecular level, our body recognizes a herb when we take it. Unlike taking a chemical or drug, our body responds to herbs as though they are old friends. When you get to know the nature of a specific plant it enhances your life immeasurably. You can come to know a herb the way a woman knows her lover. When the spirit of a plant meets the spirit of a human you can expect magic. Thanks both to traditional practices and recent scientific discoveries, we now know that certain plants can work wonders for the human body. The classic definition of a herb is a non-woody plant which dies down to its roots each winter. This definition is far too limiting. It was probably made up by 19th Century European botanists who had never seen the rainforest in which, of course, there is no winter to die back in. Neither had they ever heard of woody trees and shrubs such as hawthorn, ginko and elder which are some of the best selling herbs on the market these days. I define a herb as a medicinal plant. It can come from any climate and be a leaf, a bark, a flower or a root. It can be home-grown or wild, a weed, a spice, a plant, which is used for its healing or culinary or beautifying properties. Here are a few simple herbs that can be fun and fruitful to explore: ALOE HEALS The cool, slippery gel oozed out of a leaf of the aloe cactus has been used for almost 3000 years to treat burns and cuts and to undo the devastating effects of too much exposure to the sun. Recent studies show that phyto substances from the aloe actually penetrate damaged tissue encouraging healing and increasing blood flow while easing inflammation and pain. GINSENG STRENGTHENS The Ancient Chinese said so. They spent a fortune on this strange looking man-root. They still do. Thousands of years ago ginseng was taken in order to extend life, to sharpen sexual functioning, to bring clarity to the brain and energy to the body. Russian and German scientists have carried out lengthy studies into the effects of ginseng on humans and animals and concluded that it does indeed sharpen the brain and shorten reaction time. It also improves concentration and helps protect you from damage caused by exposure to long-term stress. GARLIC PROTECTS The ancient Greeks—including Pliny as far back as the first century AD—insisted that this smelly plant banishes worms and coughs. By now there have been more than 2,500 studies confirming its anti-microbial properties and its usefulness in warding off flu and colds not to mention its ability to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol levels which are too high, and to help clear yeast infections. COMFREY KNITS Its very name comes from the Latin conferta which means ‘grow together’. In 400BC the Greek physician Dioscorides praised comfrey for its ability to stop heavy bleeding and clear bronchial infections. Science confirms that comfrey is rich in the healing compound allantoin which enhances tissue growth and cell multiplication. That is why you so often find it added to ointments and face creams. GINGER SOOTHES A core remedy in the Chinese pharmacopoeia for nausea and gentle cleansing, the deliciously hot ginger plant has been used for more than 1500 years by wise women healers in Europe for tummy upsets. Many scientific studies confirm that it helps travel sickness. Some even show it helps morning sickness in pregnancy—in part because it has the ability to calm excess acid in the stomach and improve digestion. FEVERFEW BANISHES Eccentric English herbalist Nicholas Culpeper was always singing the praises of this cheerful daisy-like plant with its lacy leaves. It was, he claimed, ‘effectual for all pains in the head.’ Recent studies carried out in Britain and elsewhere confirm that he knew what he was talking about. Feverfew can reduce both the frequency and the intensity of migraine. Once you discover the power of herbs it is easy to become so enthusiastic about them you go overboard trying to use them for everything. It is not wise to take lots of different plants all at the same time. Or you might start to think that since a small amount of something is good for you, taking twice or three times that amount will be even better. It isn’t. If you want safe and sane herbal help here are a few guidelines to follow: Herbs occasionally interact with conventional drugs. Be sure to tell your doctor that you intend to try a herbal remedy. If you want to use herbs to treat a serious medical condition, find yourself a good medical herbalist to work with. Don’t do it yourself. Take no more than recommended dosages of a herb or combination. If you notice any adverse reaction, stop right away. Use only the very best herbs whether they be fresh, dried, teas, tinctures, extracts, or capsules. Give plants enough time to work. Many herbs, such as St John’s Wort and Wild Yam, are slow to build beneficial effects on the body. Look to six weeks for results.

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana®

Fast, Healthy Weight Loss

Leslie Kenton’s Cura Romana® has proudly supported 19,000+ weight loss journeys over the past 14 years. With an overall average daily weight loss of 0.5 - 0.6 lb for women and 0.8 - 1.0 lb for men.

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 25th of January 2023 (updated every 12 hours)

-0.74 lb
for women
-0.78 lb
for men
-0.74 lb
for women
-0.78 lb
for men

Yesterday’s Average Daily Weight Loss:

on the 25th of January 2023 (updated every 12 hours)

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