Friday, December 29, 2006

Year end report on plastic bags

In June I found, and I was horrified by the nasty counter that tells the number of plastic bags we've used this year. I just did a year end check.

495,996,000,000 passed at 1:48 AM

and there are three days to go in 2006! Start 2007 with this thought (from their site):

100,000 people can save 14,000 barrels of oil per year by using reusable bags.

Where has health gone?

I'm not usually a fan of conspiracy theories, but I can be highly tempted with respect to health. I think of the 'military-industrial complex' that threatened to dominate the 50's (my formative years); now we're looking at the medical-industrial complex. Where's the rhetoric of a Dwight D. Eisenhower when you need it?

We're dealing with a highly technological medicine, full of acronyms like CAT and MRI... medications that leave your liver in shock (the body's primary filter, and according to the Greeks, the seat of the emotions)... corporate health providers that treat by the minute. Why does the US lead the world in cost of medical care yet show up far down on the list of health status?

My view may be skewed because I talk to many people who have exhausted the medical care offered to them. I can hope to open some doors to understanding what we can learn about taking care of our health. Look at traditional herbal medicine, look at other traditions like Chinese or Ayurvedic medicine, or the genius of Samuel Hahneman for the development of homeopathics into the highly complex discipline we have from 200 years of study. Support practitioners who have studied disciplines that work with the body's healing force. And support the winds of change in the allopathic medical community that embrace many sources of healing.

Why do we want to be healthy? To enjoy life as an active participant; to bring joy to others, and help to those in need; to see our children grow up and our grandchildren become the people we hoped for... In 2007 --- share the health! (I'll start by baking more whole grain/xylitol sweetened hermits.)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Veggies down under

TV never captured my attention like the computer has, and now I am most captivated by blogs. I get caught up in the food/veg/nutrition blogseach one linking to more, and there are many, many good many blogs, so many recipes, so little time! My latest discovery is written by a naturopath in Australia, Limes & Lycopene. Once you adjust to the inversion of the seasons, you'll find someone you wish could by your own doctor. What caught my attention was the Aussie version of the "eat your veggies, 2006" advice -- pinning it down to 2 fruits and 5 vegetables a day seems to make it more realistic. Remember that a "serving" is often smaller than you think, eat vegetable soups for 2 or 3 servings, snack on fruit...keep watermelon cool, not cold for the highest lycopene content (and holding it after picking increases nutrients!)... Check it out.

Food and herbs are by far the best sources of nutrition, with new information on the benefits announced faster than I can keep track. You can use supplements to boost your "servings" -- just keep in mind that they are supplemental. FrequenSea has the primal sea plankton (source of Omega 3's and sunlight nutrients), Goji is a fabulous berry that nurtures, energizes, heals; greens in powders or capsules have been joined by reds, purples, blues, yellows, whites have every fruit and vegetable we'd hope to eat. A mix of these with fiber, flax-borage oil and cal-mag powder is my breakfast on work days and keeps me satisfied all morning.

What about potassium? We need a lot of it, and certain medications deplete it, sometimes dangerously. Should you take potassium in capsules? Since the amount of potassium is limited to 99 mg/capsule, I prefer to get mine, bountiful and safe, from food. Outstanding sources are acorn squash, leafy greens and dried beans. Bananas and oranges? Good, but lower amounts. Just another reason to remember, 2 fruits and 5 veg.