News that can make you healthier

Fasting 2-4 days can regenerate your immune system.

A scientific study showed that short fasts can be very beneficial in restoring a person’s ability to overcome health threats even before and after chemotherapy:

See: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/277860.phphttp://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/10878625/Fasting-for-three-days-can-regenerate-entire-immune-system-study-finds.html

High blood pressure?  Check your medicine cabinet!

 Studies have shown that a number of drugs can contribute to high blood pressure, but most people don’t know that some of the common OTC pain remedies can have a negative effect on the results when the nurse pumps up that cuff.  Ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, and ketoprofen are listed as the main villains.  These can be found on the pharmacy shelf under a variety of brand names, including Advil and Aleve.

For more information on this topic, just search “blood pressure, pain tablets” and you’ll get lots of hits.  Webmd.com is one good source: http://www.webmd.com/pain-management/features/everyday-pain-relief-high-blood-pressure

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Eat more sardines to live longer?

A number of natural health gurus recommend eating sardines several times each week.  We’re talking about real sardines, Sardinia pilchardus, like the ones caught in Mediterranean waters and off the coasts of Morocco and Portugal.  U.S. law now allows any small fish to be marketed as “sardines,” and while these non-sardine fish might have a great deal of nutritional value, they can’t compete with “the real thing.”  Real sardines are chock full of essential nutrients, including CoQ10, omega-3s, vitamin D, calcium, and the nucleotides which contribute to the production of our RNA and DNA.  A lot of people who have managed to live to a very old age and remain healthy swear by sardines.  You can find a good article on the subject at:

http://www.calibex.com/Bela-Olhao-Sardines/zzcalibex2zB1z0–search-html?nxtg=22d00a280512-BC5E7F730D8B41FC

In this article, the author recommends BELA-Olhão sardines that are distributed by Blue Galleon from Portugal.

Sardines on top of your salad or slaw make a delicious, nutritious, and filling lunch.  Most brands come in a variety of “flavors,” ranging from plain water to hot sauce.

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Sprouts — safe or not?

Problems with sprouts have been much in the news lately.  See:

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/food-poisoning/news/20110628/sprouts-linked-to-salmonella-outbreak-in-us

Sprouts, if properly handled, can be a safe and nutritious addition to your diet.  Unfortunately, even though millions of pounds of sprouts are sold throughout the world each year, it’s the few “rotten apples” that make the news.

Many dependable commercial sources are available.  However, if you’d like to grow your own sprouts, the Internet is full of instructions on how to do it.  This is a representative primer:

http://www.primalseeds.org/sprouting.htm

Whether I buy my sprouts or grow them myself, before I eat them raw I spray them with apple cider vinegar, then add water to let the diluted vinegar do a little more work on any potential pathogens and, finally, rinse them several times in my very pure deep-well water.  I’ve never had a problem with any sprouts processed in that manner.

Apple cider vinegar is a good choice for sanitizing any fruits or vegetables you plan to eat raw.  Spray, soak, and rinse as suggested above.  See: http://www.apple-cider-vinegar-benefits.com/vinegar-as-a-disinfectant.html

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Does “city water” kill the very important friendly flora in your gut?

A healthy gut with its 3-5 pounds of “good bacteria” is absolutely essential to your overall good health.  These friendly flora not only are required for good digestion of your food and absorption of the nutrients, but they also serve as frontline soldiers in your immune system’s defense against a host of potentially deadly invaders.  For a detailed explanation of what those friendly little guys lining your gut do for you, see: http://www.nourishingdays.com/2010/04/digestion-and-elimination-understanding-the-importance-of-gut-flora/  It would be well worth your while to use your search engine to find other articles about the “importance of friendly flora in your gut.”

Armed with this information about how important your friendly flora are, how do you keep those little guys happy in there?  In earlier days, most Americans consumed a variety of unpasteurized foods, such as fresh-churned buttermilk, homemade kraut, clabber, yogurt, and hard cheeses, and also drank their water from a well or spring and never heard of antibiotics.  In other countries, miso, kimchi, and kefir were, and still are, added to the list.  With those natural foods, guts usually stayed pretty much balanced and healthy.  Nowadays, we have to work at it.  For a starter on how to do that, see: http://www.optimalhealthsystems.com/shownews.asp?id=131

While many modern innovations visit deadly plagues upon the little guys in our guts that are struggling to keep us healthy, the most obvious one is antibiotics in their many forms.  That’s why when you take a course of antibiotics for whatever ails you, you typically will suffer digestive upset and/or constipation.  A more sinister invader comes from the faucet in your home if your water supply comes from a municipal treatment plant.  The chlorine that is meant to kill pathogens in the relatively filthy water that they start out with also is very hostile to the innocent bystanders in your gut.  You also get this same bug bomb from a variety of commercial products that are made with chlorinated city water.

Just as chlorine will turn into a gas and evaporate from your swimming pool, it also will evaporate from an open container of water on your counter within 24 hours or so.  It also can be filtered out with a variety of devices.  Whatever you do, it’s well worth your time and effort to avoid consuming anything containing chlorine.  The fluoride that is added to the water in many city systems also is very controversial, but that’s a subject for another article at another time.  For more information on how to deal with chlorine, see: http://www.optimalhealthsystems.com/shownews.asp?id=131

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Does your body think you’re still a stone-age hunter-gatherer?

There are some serious advocates of adopting the lifestyle of our Paleolithic hunter-gatherer ancestors of some 40,000 years ago.  That would include a radical diet change, along with some serious walking, sometimes carrying a heavy load, along with short bursts of intense exercise that would duplicate running after or from another animal.

The publication that inspired this article was forwarded to me by a friend.  See: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,2044343-1,00.html

Many “modern scientists” ridicule the idea that our “modern diet” is bad for us as long as we eat “in moderation,” but our steadily increasing rates of obesity, even among children, and the subsequent early disability it generates provides incontrovertible evidence that many of us are doing something very wrong.

Both dairy products and grains are foods that humans have adopted either out of necessity or for convenience.  Now, few products that you find in your local super market when you drive your SUV out on your modern “hunter-gatherer” trip fail to include one or the other or both of these ingredients.  Breads and cereals each take up a whole section to themselves.  Even the animals that provide our meat usually are fed with cereals that are equally unnatural for them.  (Even wild chickens enjoy a widely varied diet.)  This produces proteins and fats that our bodies are not very skillful at assimilating, as demonstrated by the still-growing multi-billion-dollar cardio-vascular treatment industry that saps a huge portion of our so-called healthcare budget.

With the advent of a more hospitable climate and our discovery some 10,000 years ago of the advantages of growing our own food instead of tracking it down in the wilds, human populations have continued to increase almost exponentially.  Now there are simply not enough wild plants and animals to feed us all.  Even today millions of humans go hungry for most of their life.  In a sense, then, we have a tiger by the tail.  If we continue to eat and fail to exercise the way we now do, many of us will continue to be crippled or killed.  If we shut down the artificial food factories and we’re all forced to go out looking for squirrels and wild greens, even more of us will die.

Those of us who are fortunate enough to have the intelligence and financial wherewithal, however, can make some substantial changes to our diet and exercise regimen so our lifestyle does not produce such debilitating challenges to our body, mind, and spirit.  Eating more raw fruits, vegetables, and nuts is a good start.  Green smoothies serve to duplicate, to an extent, the several hours each day that our ancestors spent chewing on wild greens.  It also would help to start substituting moderate amounts of wild or free-range meat for the huge amounts of commercial meat that are produced by confining animals in torturously small pens and feeding them unnatural diets that include a host of toxic chemicals that are passed on to us.  Wild-caught fish, especially real sardines, are an even better choice.  Finally, daily walk/runs, coupled with regular bouncing on a mini-trampoline and some strength exercise, would help round out our caveman regimen.

You can find lots of websites that suggest steps you can take to make your lifestyle “more natural.”  By plugging “paleo lifestyle” or some such into your search engine, you’ll get tons of hits.  One good one that gives the basics is provided by Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_lifestyle

Getting out of the unhealthy rut that most of us have been brainwashed to think of as “normal and acceptable” is not easy.  Rich food and easy living are just as addictive as cocaine.  It takes discipline to give up bad habits.  It takes sacrifice.  But, in the end, giving up these addictions is a whole lot easier than shooting yourself up every day with insulin, having your chest sliced open, spending most of your income on drugs, or finding yourself sitting in a wheelchair and drooling on your bathrobe as you wonder what went wrong with your life.

The sooner you commit to making a positive, substantial, and permanent change in your lifestyle, the easier and more effective it will be.

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Are melon seeds edible?

They are!  They’re not only edible, they’re very nutritious, so quit throwing them into the garbage can.  You get most of the nutrition, of course, by eating them raw, which could be a problem if you just put them in your mouth and chew.  A better idea is to include them in your smoothies.

Since the seeds in cantaloupes and other fruits in the muskmelon family are stored in a clump in a center cavity, they’re very easy to harvest.  Just scoop them out, along with the fiber that holds them together, put them in a plastic bag or other airtight container, and store them inside your fridge with your other super green smoothie ingredients.

Cantaloupe seeds are rich in antioxidants and a variety of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, magnesium, phosphorous and iron as well as protein and fiber.  For more information, see:

http://www.ehow.com/about_6646839_benefits-cantaloupe-seeds_.html

As shown in the linked article below, half of the watermelon seed kernel is nutritious oil and over a third is protein.  It also contains iron, calcium and other trace minerals.  When you leave the hull on, as you naturally would do with a smoothie, you also get a big bonus of fiber.  All in all they’re well worth saving.

If you’re spitting them out, deposit them in a container and give them a quick vinegar rinse before you store them just to remove any bacteria from your mouth that might cause them to spoil before you use them.  For more information on watermelon seeds, see:

http://www.ehow.com/facts_5715296_watermelon-seeds-effects.html

Both of these melon seeds are eaten in other countries in the same way that we eat pumpkin and sunflower seeds.  Roasted, hulled, and salted, they make a delicious snack, although much of the nutritious is lost with the cooking.  Consuming them in your smoothies is better.

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A recent study shows that eating “white fruits” might reduce stroke risk

The news article says, “Consuming fruit with white edible portions, such as pears and apples, can reduce the risk of stroke by 52%, researchers from Wageningen Uninversity in the Netherlands wrote in the journal Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association. This is the first study to look at the link between fruit and vegetable color groups and stroke risk, the authors explained.”

See the whole article at:

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/234574.php

Keep in mind that fruits and vegetables of other colors have been shown to help protect against a variety of other illnesses, including cancer and heart disease.  The bottom line is, if you want to be healthy, make raw fruits and vegetables a major part of your diet.  In most cases, an “illness” is simply your body’s attempt to cope with an abusive diet and lifestyle.

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Chronically fatigued?  Scientists recommend that you eat a healthy diet and reduce stress.

For many years, medical scientists have tried to link chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) to a virus.  While any number of conditions that produce massive inflammation in the body will result in loss of energy and endurance, food and beverage intake often is found to be the main culprit.  Invariably, people who switch from the standard American diet to a more natural, mostly raw diet report a surge in their energy and their overall enjoyment of life.

It’s encouraging that this article, linked below, recommends a healthy diet and stress reduction.  Unfortunately, the methods given for “stress relief” are the same old formulas that are geared to slightly reduce the symptoms of stress but totally ignore the cause.  All stress is caused by harboring one or more impossible goals in one’s own mind.  No matter how much you meditate, take deep breaths, or indulge in warm baths, unless you cancel the impossible goal that’s causing your stress, the stress will continue to be there destroying your health and sapping your energy.

See the full article at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health/Chronic-fatigue-syndrome-Dos-and-donts/articleshow/10113325.cms

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How doctors die

This is an article by a medical doctor about the wisdom of avoiding “futile care” when there is really no hope for a patient to recover.

http://zocalopublicsquare.org/thepublicsquare/2011/11/30/how-doctors-die/read/nexus/

I would think this also provides a good argument for “alternative care” such as that recommended by this website.  That would include stress management, a mostly raw diet, exercise, sunshine, lots of pure water, meditation, etc.  In the absence of invasive medical procedures, even if this lifestyle change does not “cure” the patient, in nearly all cases it at least will improve the quality of a person’s remaining life and even give him/her more time to be with loved ones.  In many cases, a radically improved lifestyle has been shown to totally eliminate even such generally untreatable maladies as medically diagnosed “terminal cancer” and give the patient decades more to live.  I’m personally acquainted with some living examples of this phenomenon.

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Does being fat have to be forever?

The following article seems to argue that once you get fat, even if you lose weight on a diet your body’s hormones will encourage you to eat more and regain the weight.  Starving yourself on a “diet,” which the subjects of this study did, doesn’t work, of course.  Once you get on a natural diet of mostly raw fruits and vegetables and green smoothies, however, your body does not feel starved as you become detoxed and lose excess fat.  With a little encouragement and self-discipline, you can develop a healthy lifestyle that stays with you for the rest of your life.  It’s easier to avoid getting fat than it is to dump fat once you get it, but it can be done.  Read the following while sipping on your green smoothie:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/magazine/tara-parker-pope-fat-trap.html

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Don’t let ‘em cut out that appendix!

Recent research reveals that the appendix might actually play an important role in protecting your health by providing a “safe house” for good bacteria when “bad bacteria” overwhelm the gut. For the full story, see: http://news.sciencemag.org/sciencenow/2013/02/appendix-evolved-more-than-30-ti.html

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Study in Spain finds Mediterranean diet significantly reduces cardiovascular disease

A scientific study showed that a Mediterranean-style diet that lowered intake of red meat, sugar, processed meats, and other processed foods and raised intake of extra virgin olive oil, nuts, fish, fruits and vegetables significantly lowered the risk of death by heart attack or stroke. See a report on the study here: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/25/us-diet-heart-disease-idUSBRE91O0XC20130225

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Study shows that “toxic sugar” causes obesity and diabetes

A study urges control of sugar intake to reduce its hazards to health. See: http://www.newser.com/story/163641/sugar-not-obesity-is-our-smoking-gun.html

In the full article, the author concludes with this: “The take-away: it isn’t simply overeating that can make you sick; it’s overeating sugar. We finally have the proof we need for a verdict: sugar is toxic.” See: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/27/its-the-sugar-folks/?smid=tw-share

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Iodine deficiency now is a “silent epidemic” in the U.S.

The following gives you what you need to know about iodine deficiency. It is well worth half an hour of your time to read the articles and see how iodine deficiency might be causing some of your own health problems:

Iodized salt is the chief source of iodine in the industrialized world.
Rates of iodine deficiency have reached epidemic levels, increasing fourfold over the past 40 years.
Recent scientific analysis reveals that many commercial table salt brands now contain inadequate amounts of iodine.
Iodine is critical to healthy thyroid function.
Inadequate iodine intake causes weight gain, low energy, depression, cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline, and a variety of cancers.
Iodine is vital to breast health in older women, with low intake correlated to increased risks for breast cancer and fibrocystic breast disease.

See the full article here: http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2011/oct2011_The-Silent-Epidemic-of-Iodine-Deficiency_01.htm

Some medical doctors are saying that the main cause of cancer in the U.S. is iodine deficiency. See: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/complementary-medicine/201108/iodine-deficiency-old-epidemic-is-back

It very easy to supplement it naturally with various sea vegetable products. Kelp tablets are convenient and inexpensive. I get mine from Pilgrims Pride: http://www.puritan.com/kelp-571

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Beetroot juice and other veggies found to lower blood pressure

See article: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2309667/Beetroot-juice-helps-lower-blood-pressure-A-glass-day-reduce-7–say-researchers.html

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Take care of the friendly flora in your gut garden!

This article references research that found it is very important to keep your billions of healthy microbial guests happy. Modern processed foods, beverages, medications and lifestyles tend to deplete the little guys who were put in our guts and other body parts to help keep us healthy. The article suggests it’s time we stopped ignorantly wiping out the good guys with the bad guys. A better solution might be to let them fight it out among themselves? See: http://www.newser.com/story/167985/want-health-feed-the-bacteria-living-inside-you.html

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Is a meat-based diet killing off the human race?

“Forks Over Knives” makes a convincing case that most western diseases can be prevented and/or reversed by adherence to a plant-based diet.  Watch the documentary before you reject the idea: http://www.forksoverknives.com/articles/

 

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