Tuesday, January 31, 2012

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Five Reasons to Get a Massage Today

Massage offers real health benefits, so much so that some conventional hospitals are making them a standard therapy for surgery patients and others.
This interesting CNN article details many of these benefits (including some that may surprise you). Along with promoting relaxation and improving your sense of well-being, getting a massage has been shown to:
  • Relieve pain (from migraines, labor, fibromyalgia and even cancer)
  • Boost your level of alertness and attention
  • Increase your body's natural killer cells, which help your immune system to defend against illness
  • Reduce stress, anxiety and depression, and ease insomnia
  • Decrease symptoms of PMS

If you've never had a professional massage before, it will likely only take you one visit to understand why they're becoming so popular: they feel great! This is because massage affects the nervous system through nerve endings in the skin, stimulating the release of endorphins, the body's natural 'feel good' chemicals.
Massage is one of the oldest and simplest forms of medical care used to ease pain and anxiety, and massages have profound health benefits. Massages, even between you and your significant other, can be an excellent addition to your healthy lifestyle.
Endorphins help induce relaxation and a sense of well-being, relieve pain and reduce levels of stress chemicals such as cortisol and noradrenaline -- reversing the damaging effects of stress by slowing heart rate, respiration and metabolism and lowering raised blood pressure.
Stronger massage stimulates blood circulation to improve the supply of oxygen and nutrients to body tissues and helps the lymphatic system to flush away waste products. It eases tense and knotted muscles and stiff joints, improving mobility and flexibility.
Massage is said to increase activity of the vagus nerve, one of 10 cranial nerves, that affects the secretion of food absorption hormones, heart rate and respiration. It has proven to be an effective therapy for a variety of health conditions -- particularly stress-related tension, which experts believe accounts for as much as 80 percent to 90 percent of disease.
In addition to the benefits listed above, massage can:
  • Stimulate the lymph system, the body's natural defense, against toxic invaders.
  • Relax and soften injured and overused muscles, reducing spasms and cramping.
  • Provide arthritis relief by increasing joint flexibility.
  • Reduce recovery time for strenuous workouts and eliminate subsequent pains of the athlete at any level.
  • Reduce post-surgery adhesions and edema and reduce and realign scar tissue after healing has occurred.
  • Contribute to shorter labor and reduce tearing for expectant mothers.
On Vital Votes, reader Debrah from Fort WayneIndiana adds:
"It is always good to see positive publicity on massage -- I am a massage therapist and a Jin Shin Do Acupressurist. I would like to add that though I love massage, acupressure is especially effective for many health issues because one gets the benefits of both massage and acupuncture at the same time (I noticed one of the studies compared massage to acupuncture).
"I teach classes for CEU's for massage and bodywork professionals and I teach for lay people who would like to learn simple techniques to use for self and family/friends.  Nothing beats a professional treatment but I also feel it is important to empower my clients -- it is so reassuring to know that a simple acupressure treatment could help headaches, all types of pain and digestive problems -- no need to go for drugs!
"Bodywork (massage, acupressure, chiropractic adjustments, cranial work) of all kinds can be just the thing to get people out of the downward health spiral in to an upward spiral -- if you feel good it is easier to be motivated to exercise and prepare healthy food!"
For more information check out Dr. Mercola site

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Surprising Health Benefits of an Organic Diet

If people believe that eating organic food makes them feel better, they are probably right, explained scientists.
According to an experiment, rats that ate organic food were healthier than rats that ate conventional diets. The experiment included 36 rats that were fed on three diets. While each diet included the same ingredients (potatoes, carrots, peas, green kale, apples and rapeseed oil) three different cultivation strategies were used:
·                  Organically--with low input of fertilizer, without pesticides
·                  Minimally fertilized--with low input of fertilizer, with pesticides
·                  Conventionally--with high input of fertilizer, with pesticides
The same diets were fed to the rats throughout their lives and health measurements began at 19 weeks of age after weaning of their first litter.

Health Benefits of Organically Grown Foods
Scientists found that, compared to rats that ate conventional diets, organically fed rats experienced various health benefits. Researchers found the rats that ate organic or minimally fertilized diets had:
·                  Improved immune system status compared to rats that ate conventional diets.
·                  Better sleeping habits.
·                  Less weight and were slimmer than rats that fed on other diets.
·                  Higher vitamin E content in their blood (for organically fed rats).
Even though the experiment clearly demonstrates the positive effects of organically grown foods compared to conventionally grown foods on the health of rats, the results cannot be directly correlated to humans. Thus, further research needs to be done in order to discover the relationship between human health and organically grown foods.
You probably know already that organic foods are good for you. The major problem most people have with organic food is the expense. However, if you plan wisely, eating organically is actually quite affordable. A diet based on whole organic foods does not have to be cost-prohibitive for the average family or single consumer.
Eating organic food is a powerful way to ensure that your food has not been genetically modified and will optimize your health. By definition, food that is "certified organic" must be free from all genetically modified organisms, produced without artificial pesticides and fertilizers and derived from an animal reared without the routine use of antibiotics, growth promoters or other drugs.
While weighing organic food against conventionally grown food, a question many people frequently ask is whether or not organic food is really better. Let's break it down ...
Organic vs. Conventional
For starters, organic farming differs from conventional farming in the methods used to grow crops:
·                  Where conventional farmers apply chemical fertilizers to the soil to grow their crops, organic farmers feed and build soil with natural fertilizer, which is far more environmentally friendly and less likely to cause any long-term complications.
·                  Conventional farmers use insecticides to get rid of insects and disease, while organic farmers use natural methods such as insect predators and barriers for this purpose.
·                  Conventional farmers control weed growth by applying synthetic herbicides, but organic farmers use crop rotation, tillage, hand weeding, cover crops and mulches to control weeds. While herbicides are not nearly as dangerous as insecticides, they still are synthetic chemicals introduced into the environment and clearly are not something that will improve your health.
The result? Conventionally grown food is often tainted with chemical residues, which can be harmful to humans. There is debate over whether dietary exposure to pesticides at levels typically found on food is dangerous, but experts say that consumers should use caution.
Pesticides can have many negative influences on your health, including neurotoxicity, disruption of your endocrine system, carcinogenicity and immune system suppression. Pesticide exposure may also affect male reproductive function and has been linked to miscarriages in women. (To learn more about the kind of toxins that can hurt your health, please review an article I wrote about how to avoid them.)
Additionally, conventional produce tends to have fewer nutrients than organic produce. On average, conventional produce has only 83 percent of the nutrients of organic produce. Studies have found significantly higher levels of nutrients such as vitamin C, iron, magnesium and phosphorus, and significantly less nitrates (a toxin) in organic crops.
Finally, be smart when buying organic foods. Just because something is organic doesn't necessarily make it better for you. You can educate yourself when shopping for true organic foods by reading labels and looking at produce stickers. I detailed what information to look for in a past newsletter article.
So buy and eat, as much as possible, organic produce and free-range, organic foods. If you can only purchase one organic product it probably should be free-range organic eggs. Fortunately, most grocery stores now have these available. If they don't, contact the store manager and encourage them to carry them.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Failure to Include this Will Sabotage Your Exercise Program

How important is stretching?

By Al Meo
Whether you are an elite athlete, a patient in rehab for an injury, a weekend warrior, or a stay at home mom, Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) will enhance all aspects of movement no matter what activity you choose to participate in.
For an impressive list of pro athlete testimonials, please see the web site
I was introduced to the AIS technique about 20 years ago. When I was in school, it was a cursory two-day course in stretching that I felt would be of benefit to me in my daily work and activities. Little did I know the change it would bring to my life and career.
Within ten days of performing the stretches, I had eliminated a rotator cuff injury that had persisted for years, as well as many other injuries since. I was amazed at how quickly these movements changed the structure and function of my shoulder and as a result, I decided to learn this technique from the man that created the work, Aaron Mattes RKT, LMT, from Sarasota, Florida
Aaron, a registered kinesiotherapist and rehabilitation specialist, has been teaching AIS for decades, and has his own clinic in Florida. I have spent many years working closely with Aaron at his clinic and at countless seminars, assisting him in teaching the next generation of therapists that will carry on this work.
With over 20 years experience, many of which were in the physical therapy setting, I've applied AIS to thousands of my patients, athletes, and clients.
I can honestly say I have never had anything but positive experiences using AIS. Simply put, it just works.

How Does Active Isolated Stretching (AIS) Work

So how does AIS differ from the myriad of modalities available for aches, pains and greater athletic performance?
There are three main principles of AIS that will help you understand this method of flexibility.
First, active isolated stretching uses your body's own laws to facilitate the results I am speaking of. The stretches are held for only 1.5-2 seconds, and are completed in repetitions.
The reason for this is that when a stretch is held for longer than two seconds, a protective mechanism called "myotatic stretch reflex" is triggered. This reflex happens in your body under many normal circumstances. However in elite performance, injury rehabilitation or the desire to instill lasting changes in the body, this reflex is undesirable.
The aforementioned is true because when the myotatic stretch reflex is initiated (by holding stretches for more than approx. 2.5-3 seconds), the muscle being stretched will begin to contract, creating what is known as an eccentric contraction - something we do not want to happen.
Allowing the myotatic stretch reflex to occur while stretching causes oxygen to be depleted from the tissue being stretched. Reduction of oxygen is the opposite of what you want to happen in a rehabilitation or performance situation.
Secondly, the stretches performed in this technique are "active"-- meaning the person being stretched actually helps move their own body part with their own muscles, before any assistance with a rope (if done alone) or a therapist (if treated by therapist) is initiated.
This active movement causes "reciprocal inhibition" (Sherrington's law). Simply put, when a muscle contracts, another muscle called the "antagonist" (the opposite) muscle is shut off.
The perfect environment to stretch a muscle is when it is relaxed. Active Isolated Stretching achieves this concept with every stretch.

Winning the War on Cancer

In the book Winning the War on Cancer, author Dr. Mark Sircus discusses sodium bicarbonate, which helps to save countless lives every day. Sodium bicarbonate is the time-honored method to “speed up” the return of the body’s bicarbonate levels to normal.

It is also the least expensive, safest, and perhaps most effective cancer medicine there is.

Sodium bicarbonate delivers a natural form of chemotherapy in a way that effectively kills cancer cells -- without the side effects and costs of standard chemotherapy treatments. The only problem with the treatment, according to Sircus, is that it’s too cheap. Since no one is going to make money from it, no one will promote it.

Those that do will be persecuted for it. The trouble with doing new studies on bicarbonate is that they are expensive and no drug company is going to fund a study when they can't profit from the treatment.

In 2008, over 1.4 million new cases of cancer will be diagnosed, and over 1,500 people will die every day from the disease, according to American Cancer Society data. Despite its prevalence as one of the biggest killers in the modern world, conventional medicine remains completely mystified as to how to address this disease.

Their “solution” to cancer lies with three risky and highly invasive procedures: surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. The alarming rates of cancer deaths across the world -- cancer has a mortality rate of 90 percent, according to Italian oncologist Dr. Tullio Simoncini -- speak volumes about the effectiveness, or lack thereof, of these treatments, yet they are still regarded as the gold standard of cancer care.

Undoubtedly, many people turn to conventional treatments like chemotherapy because they think they are the ONLY option. But perhaps people would feel differently if they knew that a full 75 percent of doctors say they’d refuse chemotherapy if they were struck with cancer due to its ineffectiveness and its devastating side effects.

“If I were to contract cancer, I would never turn to a certain standard for the therapy of this disease. Cancer patients who stay away from these centers have some chance to make it,” said Professor Gorge Mathe.

You may be surprised to learn that, despite its reputation as the go-to cancer treatment, chemotherapy has an average 5-year survival success rate of just over 2 percent for all cancers, according to a study published in the journal Clinical Oncology in December 2004.

“It is clear that cytotoxic chemotherapy only makes a minor contribution to cancer survival,” the researchers wrote. “To justify the continued funding and availability of drugs used in cytotoxic chemotherapy, a rigorous evaluation of the cost-effectiveness and impact on quality of life is urgently required.”

Chemotherapy is a classic example of a cure that is worse than the disease. In fact, many experts now say that cancer patients are more likely to die from cancer treatments than the cancer itself.

“The majority of the cancer patients in this country die because of chemotherapy, which does not cure breast, colon or lung cancer. This has been documented for over a decade and nevertheless doctors still utilize chemotherapy to fight these tumors,” said Dr. Allen Levin, MD, author of The Healing of Cancer.

There Are Safe, Effective Options Available for Treating Cancer
Yet, you probably haven’t heard of them because they’re simple and inexpensive, and therefore lack the backing to get thoroughly researched and publicized. Dr. Simoncini explains:

“In the future -- I hope soon -- I am convinced that it will be possible to treat and cure any tumor within 15-30 days with either a pill or an injection in the morning and in the evening when there is targeted pharmacological research. But, again, we now have to work with what we have.”

Is he talking about the latest chemo drug? A radical new surgery? A high-dose radiation treatment? Nope, not even close. Dr. Simoncini is referring to sodium bicarbonate, better known as baking soda.

Dr. Simoncini was ousted from the medical community because as an oncologist -- a cancer specialist -- he refused to use conventional cancer treatment methods, choosing instead to administer sodium bicarbonate..

Dr. Simoncini’s quite amazing experience has shown that 99 percent of breast- and bladder cancer can heal in just six days, entirely without the use of surgery, chemo or radiation, using just a local infiltration device (such as a catheter) to deliver the sodium bicarbonate directly to the infected site in your breast tissue or bladder. You can watch actual before and after footage of the treatment working in this video

“Sodium bicarbonate is the time honored method to 'speed up' the return of the body’s bicarbonate levels to normal. Bicarbonate is inorganic, very alkaline and like other mineral type substances supports an extensive list of biological functions. Sodium bicarbonate happens to be one of our most useful medicines because bicarbonate physiology is fundamental to life and health,” Dr. Sircus writes in Winning the War on Cancer.

Many chemotherapy treatments actually include sodium bicarbonate to help protect patients’ kidneys, heart and nervous system. It’s been said that administering chemotherapy without bicarbonate could possibly kill a patient on the spot. Could it be that while mixing chemo poisons with baking soda, any improvements seen are the result of the baking soda, and not the toxic poisons? 

Dr. Sircus certainly thinks so.

“There are no studies separating the effects of bicarbonate from the toxic chemotherapy agents nor will there ever be,” he says.

If you keep an open mind, you will quickly learn that there are numerous ways to support your body in healing that have nothing to do with toxic drugs and surgery, even when it comes to a serious condition like cancer.

Another such approach is Dr. Hamer’s German New Medicine (GNM), which operates under the premise that every disease, including cancer, originates from an unexpected shock experience, and that all disease can be cured by resolving these underlying emotional traumas.

Despite a 95 percent success rate, Dr. Hamer has spent time in prison for refusing to disavow his medical findings and stop treating his patients with his unorthodox techniques, and is currently living in exile, seeking asylum from persecution.

What’s Even Better Than a Safe Treatment? 


Relatively simple risk reduction strategies can help you to VIRTUALLY ELIMINATE your cancer risk, and radically improve your chances of recovering from cancer if you currently have it.

You won’t read or hear much about these techniques elsewhere either, because they have not been formally "proven" by conservative researchers. However, were you aware that 85 percent of therapies currently recommended by conventional medicine have never been formally proven either? That’s something to think about. Here are the top tips I recommend:

1.  Reduce or eliminate your processed food, sugar and grain carbohydrate intake. Yes, this is even true for whole unprocessed organic grains, as they tend to rapidly break down and drive your insulin and leptin levels up, which is the last thing you need to have happening if you are seeking to resolve a cancer.

2.  Control your fasting insulin and leptin levels. This is the end result, and can be easily monitored with the use of simple and relatively inexpensive blood tests.

3.  Normalize your ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fats by taking a high-quality krill oil and reducing your intake of most processed vegetable oils.

4.  Get regular exercise. One of the primary reasons exercise works is that it drives your insulin levels down. Controlling insulin levels is one of the most powerful ways to reduce your cancer risks.

5. Normalize your vitamin D levels by getting plenty of sunlight exposure and consider careful supplementation when this is not possible. If you take oral vitamin D and have a cancer, it would be very prudent to monitor your vitamin D blood levels regularly.

6. Get regular, good sleep.

7. Eat according to your nutritional type. The potent anti-cancer effects of this principle are very much underappreciated. When we treat cancer patients in our clinic this is one of the most powerful anti-cancer strategies we have.

8. Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins like pesticides, household chemical cleaners, synthetic air fresheners and air pollution.

9. Limit your exposure and provide protection for yourself from radiation produced by cell phones, cell phone towers, base stations and WiFi stations.

10.  Avoid frying or charbroiling your food. Boil, poach or steam your foods instead.

11. Have a tool to permanently reprogram the neurological short-circuiting that can activate cancer genes. Even the CDC states that 85 percent of disease is caused by emotions. It is likely that this factor may be more important than all the other physical ones listed here, so make sure this is addressed. One of the best approaches and my particular favorite tool, as you may know, is the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT).

12. Eat at least one-third of your food raw. Personally my goal is 85% raw and I am usually able to achieve that. 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Toxin to Detoxification

Toxin can enter the body in three ways, ingestion, absorption and inhalation resulting in hormonal imbalance, illnesses and even death. Toxins will find its way in the body through polluted air, the water we bathe with, chemicals in body lotions and face wash, but most talked about today is the growing amounts of chemicals in the food we eat and water we drink. We many not be able to eliminate all toxins which enters the body, but there are many ways to reduce them.

  1. Using natural household cleanses, air purifiers, shower filters, faucet distillers and natural body lotions and wash
  2. Organic fruits and vegetables
  3. Wild fish and meats
  4. Regular body detoxification
Detoxifying the human body can be extremely expensive if considering GNC, Nutrilite and other brand name products. Before these products entered the market, our grand parents were detoxifying with natural foods. Most animals when they are sick, eat plants resulting in vomiting. Studies have showed that these plants naturally detoxify the body while providing nourishment. Detoxifying foods are.

Most fruits and vegetable within your country, lettuce, watercress, wheatgrass, broccoli, cabbage, kale, spinach, carrots, artichoke, asparagus, avocados, cauliflower, beets, tomatoes, lemons, oranges, limes, apples, berries, grapes, prunes, dates, onions, peepers, garlic, chives, ginger, turmeric and other spices, coconut oil, flaxseed oil and olive oil, and many others long side lots of water.

It is best to eliminate all meats, commercial beverages, processed foods, sugar and alcohol while lightly steaming, blending or juicing the above food when cleaning. If this is your first cleanse feel free to consult with your medical doctor. Some eat this way daily and have been for many years, but for beginners, 1-7 days are an excellent first step. See below for a one day detox meal plan.

Natural Cleanse
6am – Big glass of water with 2 tsp of lemon juice and apple cider vinegar
8am – Juice of a carrot, 2 apples, 4 cups spinach, small ginger and 1 orange
12non – Steamed beets, carrots and broccoli with avocado, olive oil and spices dressing 
4pm – An apple and or orange
7pm – Cucumber, onion, tomatoes salad with lemon and flaxseed oil or fruits smoothie

Please note: For athletes needing addition protein, a plant based protein like hemp or spirulina can work. The amount, mixing and matching of fruits and vegetables will be of choice.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Leftover Lentils with fresh Broccoli

Simple Healthy Lunch

Lentils Ingredients (cooked the day before):
2 cups lentils with about 4 cups water
Half medium carrot chopped
Half medium onion chopped
1 ½ cups pumpkin
2 tsp garlic
2 tsp turmeric
2 tsp parsley
To taste: cayenne pepper, white pepper, salt

2 pot spoons lentils
1 hand full broccoli

  • Wash and place fresh broccoli in a microwaveable bowl
  • Place 2 pot spoons of leftover lentils over the fresh broccoli
  • Microwave for about 2 mins
  • Stir in cayenne pepper for spicy taste

You can use fresh cooked lentils

Nutritional Facts: High in Protein, Vitamins and Minerals 

Promotes Fat Loss

Try it today 

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Is Fructose good for us?

By Dr. Mercola
Before I start my commentary let me mention that you can view the slides to Dr. Lustig's excellent presentation here
Fructose consumption rates continue to rise worldwide, despite the fact that a growing collection of studies clearly demonstrate that consuming excessive amounts of fructose (primarily in the form of high-fructose corn syrup) is the fastest way to destroy your health.
Half of the U.S. population over the age of two now consumes sugary drinks on a daily basis, and that's just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.  Unnecessary calories from fructose-laden drinks and processed foods of all kinds can quickly add several pounds a year to your weight and rob you of your health.
Over the last several years, fructose has been revealed as a major culprit or exacerbating factor in:
Elevated blood pressure, andnocturnal hypertensionInsulin resistance / Type 2 DiabetesNon-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
Elevated uric acid levels, which can result in gout and/ormetabolic syndromeAccelerated progression of chronic kidney diseaseIntracranial atherosclerosis(narrowing and hardening of the arteries in your skull)
Exacerbated cardiac abnormalities if you're deficient in copperGenotoxic effect on the colonMetastasis in breast cancer patients and pancreatic cancer growth
Tubulointerstitial injury (injury to the tubules and interstitial tissue of your kidney)Obesity and related health problems and diseasesArthritis

A Calorie is Not a Calorie...

Dr. Lustig, a Professor of Clinical Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology at UC San Francisco, has been on the forefront of the movement to educate people about the health hazards of sugar, and I highly recommend viewing his presentation, The Trouble with Fructose, above. He's a compelling speaker and does an excellent job of laying down the facts in an easy to understand manner.
One of the primary problems with fructose is that it is isocaloric but not isometabolic, meaning that while you can have the same amount of calories from fructose or any other nutrient, including glucose, the metabolic effect will be entirely different despite the identical calorie count. This explains why calorie counting doesn't work. You simply have to take the quality or source of the calories into account in order to successfully lose weight.
Fructose metabolism is quite different from glucose (dextrose) metabolism in that it places the entire burden on your liver, and this accounts for many of its devastating health effects. Furthermore, people consume fructose in enormous quantities these days, which has made the negative effects that much more profound. Without getting into the very complex biochemistry of carbohydrate metabolism, it is important to have a general understanding of how your body handles these sugars.
Below is a summary of the main differences between glucose and fructose metabolism, which explains why I keep repeating that fructose is by far the worst type of sugar there is:
  • After eating fructose, 100 percent of the metabolic burden rests on your liver. But with glucose, your liver has to break down only 20 percent.
  • Every cell in your body, including your brain, utilizes glucose. Therefore, much of it is "burned up" immediately after you consume it. By contrast, fructose is turned into free fatty acids (FFAs), VLDL (the damaging form of cholesterol), and triglycerides, which get stored as fat.
  • The fatty acids created during fructose metabolism accumulate as fat droplets in your liver and skeletal muscle tissues, causing insulin resistance and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Insulin resistance progresses to metabolic syndrome and type II diabetes.
  • Fructose is the most lipophilic carbohydrate. In other words, fructose converts to activated glycerol (g-3-p), which is directly used to turn FFAs into triglycerides. The more g-3-p you have, the more fat you store. Glucose does not do this.
  • When you eat 120 calories of glucose, less than one calorie is stored as fat. 120 calories of fructose results in 40 calories being stored as fat. Consuming fructose is essentially consuming fat!
  • The metabolism of fructose by your liver creates a long list of waste products and toxins, including a large amount of uric acid, which drives up blood pressure and causes gout.
  • Glucose suppresses the hunger hormone ghrelin and stimulates leptin, which suppresses your appetite. Fructose has no effect on ghrelin and interferes with your brain's communication with leptin, resulting in overeating.
Interestingly enough, glucose has been found to further accelerate fructose absorption, so when you MIX glucose and fructose together, you absorb more fructose than if you consumed fructose alone! This is yet another important piece of information for those who want to make a better effort at controlling their weight.
Anyone who still tries to tell you that "sugar is sugar" in an effort to defend high fructose corn syrup is seriously unaware of the current research, which clearly demonstrates that there are major differences in how your body processes these sugars. The bottom line is: fructose leads to increased belly fat, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and diabetes, along with a long list of associated chronic diseases.

Should Fructose be Government Controlled?

The second video above is another presentation by Dr. Lustig called "How to Have a Sweet Ending," given at the UCSF Center for Obesity, Assessment, Study and Treatment. In it, he lays out his ideas for how to curb the consumption of sugar. ccording to Dr. Lustig, efforts at educating the public have failed, and he believes the government must intervene, and essentially force the people to change their ways. In response, De Coster, writing on LewRockwell states:
"He believes that a massive policy of taxation, regulation, and interdiction, at both a societal and an individual level, is necessary to force the reduction of sugar consumption. He has, in fact, called for a global policy to eradicate sugar addiction. Lustig is not calling for a few misplaced laws, here and there, to protect you from yourself. Rather, he is trying to justify a global crusade against freedom of food choice on the basis that "our toxic environment cannot be changed without government/societal intervention."
Among Lustig's suggested interventions are controls on advertising and marketing, government counter-campaigns (taxpayer-funded, government propaganda), and raising prices via actual price fixing and/or taxation. Moreover, he advocates a policy that mimics the iron law of alcohol policy – reducing the availability of sugar-based products by way of age limits for purchase ("carding kids for Coke"), licensing and zoning controls on sales outlets, and regulating the hours of operation and density of fast food outlets through a series of government-issued permits."
Is government intervention the solution to this problem? What do you think?  I'd love to hear what you think on this issue, so please do share your thoughts and ideas in the Vital Votes forum below.
Personally, I have to agree with De Coster that Dr. Lustig's ideas sound a lot like the invocation of the new Food Safety Modernization Act, which stands poised to do far more harm than good. I think there's a real danger in trying to regulate or tax ANY kind of food out of existence. After all, it's not the sugar in and of itself that is toxic—it's the MASSIVE doses that people consume, and honestly... personal responsibility and educated choice needs to enter the picture sooner or later. Your diet, after all, is front and center when it comes to taking control of your health, which is something everyone needs to do if they truly want to live a long and healthy life.
I believe the current situation can change, but enough people need to understand the simple truths of healthy eating and refuse to buy sugar-laden processed foods and pass on the daily sodas. Earlier this year, Dr. David Ludwig, a Harvard-affiliated pediatrician wrote a commentary in JAMA, offering his suggestions on how to turn this disease-producing diet trend around. These are reasonable ideas, but I don't think we can sit around and wait for government to fix this mess. Instead, do what you can to help educate others
His suggestions include:
  • Restructuring agricultural subsidies
  • Regulating the marketing of food to children
  • Adequately funding school lunch programs
  • Using existing and future technologies to allow the food industry to retain profits while producing more healthful products

How to Reverse the Obesity- and Related Chronic Disease Trends

I believe there are two primary dietary recommendations that could make all the difference in the world for most people, leading to a swift reversal in the horrific disease trends we're currently facing:
  1. Severely restricting carbohydrates (sugars, fructose, and grains) in your diet, and
  2. Increasing healthy fat consumption
I recently wrote about this recommendation in-depth, so for more details, please see This Substance Fools Your Metabolism - and Tricks Your Body into Gaining Pounds. If you want to shed excess pounds and maintain a healthy weight long-term, and RADICALLY reduce (and in many cases virtually eliminate) your risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer, then get serious about restricting your consumption of fructose to no more than 25 grams per day, with a maximum of 15 grams a day from fresh fruit. If you're already overweight, or have any of these diseases or are at high risk of any of them, then you're probably better off cutting that down to 10-15 grams per day; fruit included.
That's the first step. My nutrition plan lays out the rest in a simple to follow, step-by-step manner. If you haven't taken the time to review it yet, I highly recommend doing so. You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. And the information is free.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Extending the life of your Bananas

Extending the life of your Bananas

Storing bananas in the freezer for extended life
1. Purchase some Ziploc bags
2. Peel the skins off the Bananas
3. Place into the Ziploc bags
4. Store in the freezer

Note: When the bananas are at its sweetest is normally the best time to freeze them. This is when they you can see dark spots appearing on the skin.

You can also add some lime juice over the bananas before placing them into the ziploc bags which will make them last even longer.    

Frozen bananas can be used in smoothies, other blended drinks, ice cream and many other dishes. Do have fun with this tip.