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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Save the lowly potato!

Senate Saves the Potato on School Lunch Menus” trumpets the headline in the October 18, 2011 edition of the New York Times. Senators from the potato-growing states affirmed that decreasing the number of servings of starchy vegetables has no basis in nutritional science. Voices from non potato growing states were conspicuously absent, Apparently the concept of “low glycemic” has not yet hit our congressional representatives.

How can we promote diet and exercise to reduce the incidence of diabetes in our school children, and then shoot down a regulation aimed at reducing the incidence of diabetes in our school children. How can we let our desire to be re-elected triumph over our desire to provide healthy nutrition for our children. What is wrong with this picture?

I love potatoes as well as the next guy. But I am also well aware that when I eat a potato, my body’s requirement for insulin skyrockets – almost as much as if I eat a piece of cake. I don’t eat cake every day. Why would I allow my children to eat potatoes every day? I guess our senators forgot to consider that piece of the picture.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Flu shot – to get one or not?

An article in the medical literature (and in the Arizona Republic) just this past week expressed dismay that only 60 % of health care workers (including doctors) have received a flu shot. The article urged all of us to set a good example by getting our annual vaccine against influenza. 

Is it possible that health care workers know something that the Federal Government and the American Medical Association appear to be unwilling to admit? 
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I have not personally received a flu shot for at least 30 years. Let me tell you some of the reasons. 
  • First, the flu shot is made up of our best guess at what are going to be the most prevalent strains of the influenza virus next year. We can be (and often are) wrong in our prediction. The virus mutates all the time, and what protects against one strain will not protect against another.
  • Second, the flu shot is given directly into what the Chinese call the “blood level” of the body – bypassing the normal immune system barriers of mucus membranes and intestinal tract, going directly to the level of the capillary system within the skin and muscles.
  • Third, the flu shot has many substances in it which are very unhealthy for the body. A few of these substances are formaldehyde (known to be carcinogenic), thimerosal (a mercury derivative, one of the most neurotoxic substances known to humankind), polysorbate 80 (a man-made chemical), egg albumin, chick kidney, monkey kidney, gelatin, MSG. 

Check out the ingredients of a multitude of vaccines on the CDC website.

So, if we don’t get a flu shot, what can we do to prevent illness? 

  • First, make sure that our nutrition is healthy – good clean food, preferably organic, preferably largely plant based and not genetically modified, with whole grains and without chemicals, pesticides, fungicides or hormones. If a vegetable or fruit can’t grow mold, it probably can’t grow me either.
  • Second, make sure that we get enough sleep, and that we exercise at least some every day. Our entire system heals during our sleep time, and exercise moves our blood around, cleaning out all the nooks and crannies that may have accumulated toxins.
  • Third, make sure that the sun never sets on our anger or resentment. It always takes two people to have a bad relationship, but it only takes one to transform the bad part into fertilizer for the ground.
  • And fourth, if we do become ill, try “oscillococcinum” – a homeopathic flu remedy available in the health food stores – or use Vitamin C, or hydrogen peroxide in an intravenous form, to make the body’s physical climate sufficiently unhealthy for the flu virus that the virus simply gives up.  
Remember - it takes two to have a relationship - whether we are talking human beings or viruses.

May you spend the winter in good health!