February 27th, 2009 cate
There’s a wonderful post over at The Traveler’s Notebook about looking at the world where ever you happen to be, as if you’re traveling. It’s inspiring and encourages you to see things with a sense of hopeful awe.
“You know the feeling. You’re walking to the market, to the store, to meet a friend, all caught up in the plodding forward of your day…and then suddenly, you take notice of where you are. The light on a wall, the expressions on people’s faces, the feeling of the weather. A distinct sense of place creeps over you, and for a moment you feel like a traveler.
I love this feeling. It is a relief to me; ah, I haven’t forgotten what I learned on the road. How to be fully present in a place.
But it’s rare at home. We tend to get used to our surroundings pretty quickly, especially if they’re surroundings we’ve grown up in or lived in for years. And this familiarity isn’t all bad—our brains, freed up from paying acute attention to the unknown, can focus on other things—writing, school, relationships, work, projects.
And yet sometimes, the desire (Overwhelming! Insatiable! Get me on a freaking bus to Belize!) for that novelty and spark of travel is overwhelming. Sometimes a sense of …” Continue reading
February 27th, 2009 cate
“1. If you hate crowds and lines, shop at dinnertime (5 to 9 p.m.) or even later. Only 4 percent of shoppers hit the aisles between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m. Least-crowded day of the week? Wednesday.
2. Go ahead and reach way back for the fresh milk. Everybody does.
3. Coupons with a bar code are easy to scan. The other ones take an eternity. But if you’re willing to wait …
4. That star fruit has been here a lot longer than the broccoli. Familiar produce turns over more quickly than exotic things.
5. “The more products you see, the more you are likely to buy,” says Marion Nestle, author of What to Eat. “That’s why the aisles are so long and the milk is usually in the far corner.”
6. Like employees with a good attitude? Shop at chains that are employee-owned, suggest customer-satisfaction surveys. When employees have a stake in the profits, it shows in their attitude.
7. The “grazers” order food at the deli, eat it as they’re shopping, and get rid of the wrappers before they check out. We also call that stealing.
8. I’m not just selling groceries, I’m selling real estate. Look high and low-literally-for good values from smaller manufacturers who can’t afford to stock their products in the eye-level sweet spot.
9. We’re marketing to your kids too. That’s why we put the rainbow-colored cereals and other kiddie catnip at their eye level.
10. Be wary of “specials.” When people see signs with numbers-”8 for $10!” “Limit: 5 per customer”—they buy 30 to 100 percent more than they otherwise might have.
11. The baby formula is locked up because thieves resell it on the black market. Ditto for the cough and cold medications, smoking-cessation products, razor blades, and batteries.
12. Driving your Ferrari to the Piggly Wiggly and want to avoid shopping-cart dents? Park far, far away.
13. You’ll end up tossing 12 percent of what you buy.”
Read 16 more things your grocer hides from you
February 18th, 2009 cate
“1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.
2. Sugar upsets the mineral relationships in the body.
3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children.
4. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.
5. Sugar contributes to the reduction in defense against bacterial infection (infectious diseases).
6. Sugar causes a loss of tissue elasticity and function, the more sugar you eat the more elasticity and function you loose.
7. Sugar reduces high density lipoproteins.
8. Sugar leads to chromium deficiency.
9 Sugar leads to cancer of the ovaries.
10. Sugar can increase fasting levels of glucose.
11. Sugar causes copper deficiency.
12. Sugar interferes with absorption of calcium and magnesium.
13. Sugar can weaken eyesight.
14. Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitters: dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.
15. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.
16. Sugar can produce an acidic digestive tract.
17. Sugar can cause a rapid rise of adrenaline levels in children.
18. Sugar malabsorption is frequent in patients with functional bowel disease.
19. Sugar can cause premature aging.
20. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.
21. Sugar can cause tooth decay.
22. Sugar contributes to obesity
23. High intake of sugar increases the risk of Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis.
24. Sugar can cause changes frequently found in person with gastric or duodenal ulcers.
25. Sugar can cause arthritis.
26. Sugar can cause asthma.
27. Sugar greatly assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans (yeast infections).
28. Sugar can cause gallstones.
29. Sugar can cause heart disease.
30. Sugar can cause appendicitis.
31. Sugar can cause multiple sclerosis.
32. Sugar can cause hemorrhoids.
33. Sugar can cause varicose veins.
34. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraceptive users.
35. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.
36. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.
37. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.
38. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.
39. Sugar can lower the amount of Vitamin E (alpha-Tocopherol in the blood.
40. Sugar can decrease growth hormone.
41. Sugar can increase cholesterol.
42. Sugar can increase the systolic blood pressure.
43. Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.
44. High sugar intake increases advanced glycation end products (AGEs)(Sugar bound non-enzymatically to protein)
45. Sugar can interfere with the absorption of protein.
46. Sugar causes food allergies….”
Continued reading the 100 MORE reasons!
February 16th, 2009 cate
Just in case you missed this important finding that mercury is found in corn syrup, here’s a little article from the washington post. However, even if corn syrup had NO mercury, it’s still remains to be an unhealthful choice. Sadly, it’s in practically everything processed. That should indicate that one should avoid it as much as possible.
Here’s an excerpt:
“Almost half of tested samples of commercial high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) contained mercury, which was also found in nearly a third of 55 popular brand-name food and beverage products where HFCS is the first- or second-highest labeled ingredient, according to two new U.S. studies.
HFCS has replaced sugar as the sweetener in many beverages and foods such as breads, cereals, breakfast bars, lunch meats, yogurts, soups and condiments. On average, Americans consume about 12 teaspoons per day of HFCS, but teens and other high consumers can take in 80 percent more HFCS than average.
“Mercury is toxic in all its forms. Given how much high-fructose corn syrup is consumed by children, it could be a significant additional source of mercury never before considered. We are calling for immediate changes by industry and the [U.S. Food and Drug Administration] to help stop this avoidable mercury contamination of the food supply,” the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy’s Dr. David Wallinga, a co-author of both studies, said in a prepared statement.
In the first study, published in current issue of Environmental Health, researchers found detectable levels of mercury in nine of 20 samples of commercial HFCS.
And in the second study, the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), a non-profit watchdog group, found that nearly one in three of 55 brand-name foods contained mercury. The chemical was found most commonly in HFCS-containing dairy products, dressings and condiments.
But an organization representing the refiners is disputing the results published in Environmental Health….” continue reading
February 1st, 2009 cate
More and more people are finding themselves with heart disease, and it’s no longer just about older adults. Increasingly, and alarmingly, many kids and teens are reported to be having problems related to heart disease. Here are a few heart healthy foods that everyone should add to their diets, not just for heart healthiness, but for overall health. In all cases, stick with ORGANIC ingredients. Non-organic fruit and other items tend to have chemicals such as pesticides, flavor enhancers and dangerous heavy metals. Note: Always consult your health care provider first about a different diet if you are taking medicines or undergoing any treatments for health issues, particularly heart disease.
Avocados are loaded with monounsaturated fat, healthy fats. They help lower LDL cholesterol levels while raising the amount of HDL cholesterol in your body. They allow for the absorption of other carotenoids, particularly beta carotene and lycopene, which are absolutely essential for heart health.
Berries – Raspberries, blueberries and strawberries are full of anti-inflammatory ingredients, which reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer. Berries in general are important for vascular health. Be sure to only choose organic berries, as non-organic fruit tend to contain dangerous amounts of pesticides, chemicals and other toxic ingredients.
Beans Fill up on fiber with chickpeas (garbanzo beans) lentils, kidney beans and blac, beans. They have lots of omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and soluble fiber.
Nuts Walnuts, almonds and macadamia nuts are all chock full of omega-3 fatty acids and mono- and polyunsaturated fats. Almonds are super rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts contain fiber, very important and a good source of healthy fat.”
Garlic contains allicin, which reacts with red blood cells and produces hydrogen sulphide. This relaxes the blood vessels, and keeps blood flowing easily.
Salmon is extremely rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Salmon is known to reduce blood pressure and keep clotting to a minimum. Salmon contains an ingredient called, carotenoid astaxanthin, which is a very powerful antioxidant. Important note: Choose wild salmon over farm raised salmon (or farm raised fish in general), which is proven to be packed with pesticides, insecticides and heavy metals.
Olive Oil is packed with monounsaturated fats. It has a tendency to lower bad LDL cholesterol and reduce your risk of developing heart disease. It’s best when used in salad dressings.
Oranges – Rich in Vitamin C, oranges protect arteries from free radicals, highly damaging molecules that cause our cells to oxidize. Oranges also contain folate, which processes the amino acid homocysteine in our bodies. Without folate, your risk of a heart attack is greater. Potassium in oranges play a key role in heart functions and muscle contractions. The calcium in oranges help maintain normal blood pressure, and magnesium helps your heart maintain a steady rhythm and normal blood pressure.
Spinach – helps keep your heart in top shape thanks to its stores of lutein, folate, potassium, and fiber.
Flaxseeds – Full of fiber and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, a little sprinkling of flaxseeds can be incredibly beneficial for your heart. Add it to yogurt or cereal for a healthy start in the morning.
Oatmeal is full of omega-3 fatty acids, folate, and potassium. This fiber-rich superfood is able to lower levels of LDL (or bad) cholesterol and help keep arteries clear. Choose coarse or steel-cut oats over instant varieties—which contain more fiber. Remember to add some flaxseeds and blueberries.