Kitchen and Pantry Makeover

Fresh vegetables are important components of a...

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For those of you out there that want to start a healthy new life in 2012, the quickest way is through a kitchen and pantry makeover. You will need to throw out (or donate) all processed foods. Processed foods almost always use chemical preservatives, artificial flavorings, chemical additives and increased sugar and salt contents, for improved taste and shelf stability. Start by getting rid of anything that is “white” in color. White flour, white rice, white bread, pasta and baked goods made from white flour have not only had all the nutrients removed, but also pose a serious threat to your health.  The baked goods, chips and snack foods also contain hydrogenated fats- the kind of fat that guarantees to clog your arteries. These fats are called trans fatty acids, and should be eliminated from your diet completely. Switch out your cooking oils (Crisco, vegetable, corn, canola) for olive oil and coconut oil, which are both very healthy. Canned fruits and vegetables need to go. They have had virtually all nutrients cooked out of them during the canning process, since heat destroys most vitamins and they have diminished fiber content. (one of the reasons the “raw diet” is gaining so much in popularity) One exception to that would be, canned beans – you can keep those. Canned kidney, pinto, black, navy and garbanzo beans are huge time savers and retain their nutrient and fiber content during the cooking process.

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Milk and cooky

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Today I am going to do some ranting about the dairy (milk) that is being sold to us, the consumer. And then I am going to do some positive raving about the dairy from Beyond Organic with just a few examples from personal experiences shared by our friends, who are highly lactose intolerant.  The dairy cattle are being fed high protein, soy-based feed, instead of fresh pasture fed. This produces cows with abnormally large pituitary glands. They in turn produce 3 times more milk than pasture fed. They also require antibiotics to keep them well. Years ago, the FDA approved the use of  rBGH (bovine growth hormone) which further increases milk production. This rBGH  was manufactured by Monsanto under the trademark “Posilac”, which had been proven to be a cancer causing growth hormone. It has since been sold to the giant drug company, Eli Lily, which still uses it in some of the cattle. That’s just a part of why we don’t drink that milk. Interestingly, many people are terribly lactose intolerant. A couple weeks back, we were fortunate enough to be on a phone call with Jordan Rubin, and he spoke on this very issue.  There is such a thing as A1 and A2 beta casein, which are proteins found in milk. Almost 100% of the cattle in the USA produce milk containing A1, which happens to be highly allergenic and causes adverse health issues. It is not found in goat’s milk, sheep’s milk or human mother’s milk. A2, on the other hand, is found in cattle of selective breeding, primarily from Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Beyond Organic dairy products are from these cattle, which contain A2. We have a friend with Crohn’s, that has been lactose intolerant his entire life. He recently had a relapse with Crohn’s after eating a few pieces of Kentucky Fried Chicken, which he NEVER eats, but was hungry at work and it was there. The bottom line is he started drinking  Amasai, a cultured whole milk dairy product, by Beyond Organic. He started with a small amount and tolerated it. He increased his consumption daily and within a month his digestive issues disappeared.  He is now drinking cases of the Amasai. Another friend, whose 9 year old daughter is also highly lactose intolerant, was introduced to the Amasai , loves it and tolerates it beautifully. And finally, last Saturday, we were presenting Beyond Organic at a Health Fair. Someone we knew there, spoke about his 16 month old son being allergic to everything- including all dairy. We gave him a bottle of raspberry Amasai to try, since it is A2, NOT A1. He reported back, thrilled and amazed that his son loved it and had NO  allergic response.  We believe that Amasai is one of the most healthful and healing cultured dairy products that can be consumed. For further info on Beyond Organic foods and beverages  go to They are presently sold in the USA only, as this company is less than 3 months old, but has plans in the making for Europe next and then global.

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English: These children, playing in a public s...

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Nutritionally speaking, soda is one of the main reasons why many people suffer health problems. There is a strong link between soda consumption and childhood obesity. And of course, the direct link between tooth decay and soft drinks. Not only does the sugar contribute to this, but also the acids in soda, which are notorious for etching tooth enamel, thereby increasing susceptibility to decay. Acid begins to dissolve enamel in as little as 20 minutes.Soda can also cause caffeine dependence in children. In an 8 ounce cup of coffee, there is about 120mg of caffeine. In a 12 ounce can of soda, there is 35-38mg of caffeine. A little known fact is that most diet colas have not only unhealthy sugar substitutes, but also added caffeine. A 12 ounce can of diet coke contains 42mg of caffeine, while diet pepsi contains 56mg of caffeine.  Childhood and adolescence are the peak years in which  bone building in the body occurs. Phosphoric acid is a common ingredient in sodas and depletes bones of calcium. Also the phosphates added to many foods contributes to this calcium depletion and ultimate increase in osteoporosis in later years. Instead of soda, we need to learn to drink pure water. An ideal amount is 1 quart daily per 50 lbs. of weight. (that comes to four, 8 ounce glasses per 50 lbs of weight)

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This is one supplement that I encourage everyone to take daily. This is the single most potent carotenoid known.  Astaxanthin has the ability to cross over the blood-brain barrier to protect the brain and central nervous system. It is highly recommended to improve memory in vascular dementia, Alzheimer’s and recovery after stroke, as well as a preventative measure. It also blood-retinal barrier to bring protection to the eyes. This powerful nutrient has been shown to be protective against cataracts, glaucoma and particularly ( ARMD) age related macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in people over 50 years of age. Astaxanthin is a powerful anti-inflammatory super nutrient. It has been shown to benefit the pain in both osteo and rheumatoid arthritis, as well as tennis elbow and carpal tunnel syndrome. And lastly, helps your skin by functioning as an internal sunscreen and helping with wrinkles.It is highly recommended that you take a natural form from marine algae, rather than synthetic. 8-10mg daily is ideal.

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Interval cardio training

Interval Training

Now that I have just finished my workout, I am replenishing with Suero Viv, an awesome cultured whey beverage by Beyond Organic. And I am also trying to breathe, as I sit here getting ready to talk about interval training. This is the single best way to exercise for optimal results in the shortest time. For your cardio workout, it can be accomplished in 20 minutes with the same results as 60 minutes of running would give you. First choose your favorite piece of cardio equipment- treadmill, elliptical, stationary bike or whatever. Then begin with 3 1/2 minutes of your warm up at a comfortable pace. Followed by 30 seconds of high

intensity, that takes you as fast as you can possibly g0.  Now you get to catch your breath for the next 90 seconds, as you continue at whatever pace is required by you, to breathe. When that 90 seconds is up, the 30 seconds of maximum intensity begins again, followed by the 90 second slow down. This needs to be done for a total of 8 intervals (16 minutes). Finally, your 3 1/2 minute cool down and you are done. There are other versions, but I would like to see you work up to this one.

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Step it up

English: East Bay Run Club: Strength Training ...

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Now that you have gotten moving more, it is time to step it up.  What you need to figure out for yourself is, what you enjoy doing-what motivates you to exercise. For instance, there are those people who love cardio.  Some put on headphones with their favorite music and off they go into “their zone”. (By the way, studies show that you work out harder and better with music.) And then there are others, like me, who love to take classes. If I can’t take a class, I have lots of videos and for me that’s like a class. Now, Dave  on the other hand, loves to lift (and it shows). We have a variety of commercial gym equipment and it all gets used. But you certainly don’t need that to get in great shape. Jillian Michaels and Bob Harper have excellent videos that require only 3-5lb hand weights. The rest is using your own body weight for strength training. The secret of course, is doing it consistently. Ideally, strength training should be done 3xs/week, and any type of cardio 2-3xs/week on alternate days. Studies show that it takes 4-7 weeks of constant repetition in order to become a habit. That of course, is our goal-to develop life changing habits. I believe 2012 is going to be a life changing year for many!

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Making physical changes in your lifestyle

Using the machines

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Every day, they are coming out with new exercise machines, videos and gimmicks all promising to help you lose weight and you will look like the people advertising the product. Unfortunately, to look that way, you have to do it for a living, like they do. They live in a gym and their looks are their livlihood, which they work on 24 hours a day. But we need to concentrate on living a healthy lifestyle and lots of physical changes will automatically come. One of the most important things we can do in terms of getting more physically fit, is to keep moving. I work in an operating room and there are nurses there who cannot start their room unless they have a chair to sit in. I, on the other hand,  almost never have one. That is just one example. Our culture is one of convenience and it has made us lazy –  after all, we are creatures of habit and comfort. So, time to start moving. My parents used to take a walk around the neighborhood after dinner, every evening. It was part of their routine. We need to make changes, by incorporating more movement, rather than less. We live on 1/2 acre as are most of the other houses in our neighborhood. Everyone owns a riding mower, except us. I get out in my shorts and sleeveless shirt and do the backyard. I get both a great leg and cardio workout, while soaking up sunshine for my Vit. D. The front yard is Dave’s territory.  Remember to do this only before 10:00 am or in the late afternoon. Also, try to watch TV  less and replace that with a constructive activity. Anything that keeps you in motion, rather than being a couch potato. If you can add just 10 minutes a day, 3 times a day with exercise, you are well on your way to living a healthier lifestyle and increasing your fitness level. Next time we will get into specific exercise and training.

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