Healthy Never Tasted So Good Chew on This… Cuz That Ain't Right

June 14, 2012

How Can Sourdough Bread Be Healthier than Wheat?

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August 1st is Lamas Day

Aug. 1 is Lamas Day

Like everything else in the commercial world of making money, the push for some time now has been to eat more wheat bread because it is healthier for you. Well, just like the rest of the sheep out there, I was following the Pied Piper right over the proverbial cliff. However, just before getting to the edge and falling into the whole wheat abyss, I stumbled, hit my head and woke up with amnesia. Wondering where I was and how I got there, I began my quest to discover why I was listening to the tune “whole wheat.”

Every where I looked, the information pointed to whole wheat; flakes, cracked, bread, pasta and anything else that the industry thought the consumers would buy. One day I decided to deconstruct the process of making bread which lead me to how to make bread the way it used to be made. Kinda like going back to organic, homestead style.

pumpernickel bread

Pumpernickel Bread

To my surprise, I discovered; “SOURDOUGH AND PUMPERNICKEL IS HEALTHIER THAN WHEAT BREADS.” Would you like to know HOW sourdough bread is healthier than wheat bread?

It comes down to the very beginning process of how it is made and then how it is digested in your body.

First, How it’s made:

Sourdough bread making is centuries old. The process was created for preserving ans storing yeast for long periods. this sourdough starter was kept “alive” as the basis for making loaves of bread for travel or just at home. Believe it or not, some of today’s starters are centuries old  and have been handed down from generation to generation and friend to friend.  Hence, the word used to describe this bread at times as “friendship bread”.  Back to the bread.

You need flour and water  to create an environment for yeast to grow.  yeast is floating in the air all around us and just needs the proper environment to land and grow. Yeast is leavening agent, a single-cell fungus that breaks down the starches in the flour, forming sugar. This is fermentation. When the yeast works on the starch and sugar molecules, it gives off carbon dioxide gas and alcohol that makes the bread rise.

Difference between fresh sourdough bread and average store bought bread:

The big difference between sourdough bread and store bought is the source of the yeast. Most bakers today use pre-packaged yeast.  The yeast has been dried, preserved and formed into a powder. You add flour, water, sugar and salt to the yeast to make a loaf of bread. The water re-activates the yeast fungi, which feeds on the sugar and starch to make the bread rise.

Old fashioned sourdough bread works with yeast in a completely different way. Fresh sourdough yeast fungi are  kept alive continuously a starter medium. You can either capture wild yeast that floats in the air as described above to create starter from scratch or get a cup of active starter from a friend.

It is this  starter that gives sourdough bread its distinctive taste…

Sourdough Starter with Cheese Cloth

Sourdough Starter with Cheese Cloth

The yeast causes a lactic acid fermentation process that not only helps to preserve the sourdough bread, but increases its nutritional value by:

  • pre-digesting starches, making the bread more easily digestible
  • lowering insulin response/improving glucose tolerance
  • protecting Vitamin B1 from the damage of the heat of baking
  • breaking down gluten, which may result in a bread that gluten-sensitive people can eat
  • activating phytase to hydrolyze (dissolve) the phytates, thus freeing up minerals such as:
    • zinc
    • iron
    • magnesium
    • copper
    • phosphorus

Sourdough rye is the most nutritious of them all, because it has more phytase activity and thus even fewer phytates in the finished product to bind to your minerals. I just love that the traditional phrase “sourdough rye” turns out to be scientifically proven as the healthiest bread. Somehow our ancestors figured out all the good stuff without the benefit of labs!

Prof. Terry Graham and his team of researchers at the Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences found that eating sourdough bread for breakfast had a profound positive effect on digesting your breakfast as well as on digesting your lunch even though the bread was consumed hours prior.  The enzymes in the bread created during fermentation changes the nature of the starches in the bread, creating a more beneficial bread.  This is is also promising to assist overweight people in losing weight.

According to and article in Keeper of the Home, sourdough bread is rated 68 on the Glycemic Index (GI) whereas other breads are rated 100.

According to Mark Sircus Ac., OMD, International Medical Veritas Association, sourdough bread as “the staff of life,” for it enhances the entire immune system. He further suggests that sourdough bread can stop the growth of cancer without killing it.

REFERENCES:

Health Benefits of  Sourdough Bread

Sourdough Bread Has Most health Benefits

Sourdough Bread and Health

Honest Pumpernickel Bread

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

How to Eat Healthy on a Budget

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Count Every Penny… They Add Up

To Eat healthy is a life-style, not a choice. Eating healthy is a conscious decision made with every meal prepared and everything we consume. Education is the key; knowledge is power. It is more important to learn how to fish than it is for someone to give you a fish. Once you learn how to fish, you can get as many fish as you can catch. Learn how to grow your own food, shop for best quality and prices and cook nutritious meals.

To eat healthy foods, especially without preservatives and additives tastes better, provides you with more nutrition and promotes better brain functioning and overall health. Better brain functioning allows you to think more clearly and better health gives you more stamina and energy. Maintaining a healthier life-style can reduce your overall medical bills saving you additional money as well. Money saved is money earned that can be used to eat healthy foods.

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Suggestions for parents to eat healthy:

  1. put pre-cut fruits and vegetables in containers with cold water in the refrigerator so kids have easy access for snacks,
  2. have children use child safety scissors to cut coupons for fruits, vegetables, whole-grains, whole-grain cereal (both you and the child benefit; save money and better health),
  3. for younger children, you pre-cut the coupons and the child has to match the picture with the product in the store,
  4. shop Wednesday and Thursday when most stores run additional specials,
  5. buy what is in season, Seasonal Fruits and Vegetables, Seasonal Fish
  6. buy frozen if not fresh not canned it has preservatives and water which you are also paying for unnecessarily,
  7. shop at ethnic stores (Asian, Indian, Hispanic, etc) prices are generally cheaper and fresher for items used in their daily cooking, also often sold in bulk so you can decide how much to buy rather than buyer prepackaged,
  8. shop Farmer’s Markets
  9. prepare and cook using the stove not the microwave, nutrition is retained and overall texture and flavor is better,
  10. take a cooking class that also teaches nutrition, food combining and budgeting
  11. search YouTube for visual answers, we learn better wen we see it but even better when we do it ourselves,
  12. Mindful Eats has additional suggestions,
  13. Repurpose  and Upcycle leftovers (food recipes),
  14. check out Eating Healthy Because of Food Stamps,
  15. check out How to Eat When You’re Really Broke ,
  16. If you need more assistance contact Food Assistance, USA Family.

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

June 12, 2012

Diet Soda… Drink Liquid Poison

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Aspartame_Kid

Aspartame Kid

Recently, one of the students from CSUB asked to shadow me as part of her university course requirements for nutrition. I agreed. Last week, the student shared with me her personal experiences after drinking a diet soda. I asked her to provide me with a writeup as part of her work. She shared with me the article written below and I am submitting the article under guest writer.

Guest Writer: Amanda Anderson, CSUB

Diet soda sounds like heaven on Earth for those who are trying to cut calories. What price would you be willing to pay though to cut a few calories out of your daily caloric intake, especially if you have been told that would help you lose weight when you are overweight?

 A few years ago, I was an avid diet soda drinker thinking that I was making a healthier intelligent choice.  However, when my doctor said that I was dehydrated, I started to drink water and cranberry juice on occasion. For a few years, I mostly drank water and cranberry juice.  I was very surprised to get a better feeling. I felt like I had more energy than I did when I drank all of the caffeine I had consumed with the diet soda.  I continued to drink more water with the occasional cranberry juice because I knew I had to stay hydrated and the water was doing just that. 

Recently, while I was at a friend’s house, this past weekend, she had offered me a diet soda.  Not giving much thought to it at the time,  I figured that one diet soda (12 ounce can) wouldn’t hurt and so I drank it.  As I already said, I had been drinking just water and cranberry juice so a soda might be a welcome change just to have something different.  Within a couple hours I had the worst headache imaginable and for the entire weekend I was nauseous and hungry to the point I could not get satisfied.  For some reason, despite my upset stomach, I felt like I needed to eat and I craved fatty foods.  I would imagine to a lesser degree, this is probably what an addict must go through. It seems as though in that short period of time with just one 12 ounce can, I was addicted. During the weekend, I didn’t think that it was the diet soda, but then after I analyzed what I ate, how I felt and the cravings I had never had before in addition to  all of the food and drinks I had consumed, the soda  was the only variable that had changed from my normal typical diet.  

What are millions of people putting into their bodies? If you have a diet coke bottle around you, read the ingredients. Other than carbonated water, do any of the ingredients sound natural or safe?  Do you know what the ingredients/chemicals are doing to your body? I didn’t think so.  The primary culprit for these reactions in the ingredient list is aspartame, which is linked to many detrimental health effects on the human body especially the brain.  According to certified nutritionist Dr. Janet Hull, aspartame is correlated with 100 side effects, including: confusion, slurring of speech, headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, depression, aggression, difficulty concentrating, insomnia, irritability, nausea, abdominal pain, and peptic ulcers (Livestrong). Hopefully you have lost your craving for diet soda by now. Diet soda is not safe for your body and the only fluid, in my opinion, one should be drinking is water. Water is completely natural and with a splash of lemon juice can also be quite delicious. Enjoy your summer with some ice water and leave the coca cola at the store!

REFERENCES:

Aspartame and Neurological Side Efffects

The Effects of Aspartame on Health

Aspartame – Anxiety, Depression and Suicide Among Children

Aspartame consumption Is Never Safe

Aspartame Causes Birth Defects and Mental Retardation

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

June 5, 2012

How Healthy is the Egg; Free Range ?

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Real Free Range Chickens:

 There has been and will undoubtedly continue to be much discussion about the egg.  No, I do not mean “which came first, the chicken or the egg!” I just want to talk about the egg not the chicken.

You ask, “how healthy is a free range, cage free egg? First, you must understand what the terms mean and how you can be hoodwinked by the grocery stores and end up paying more for what you thought you understood free range and cage free to mean.

The Egg cartons in the grocery stores that have the word “cagefree or cage free” means the chickens were not in a cage. However, they ARE in a building shielded from the sun and obtaining necessary vitamin-D for health. When you have a lot of chickens in a confined space, a lot of dropping become accumulated and the chickens are not human, so they walk, run, fall and even lay their eggs wherever.

Cagefree, You decide!

 

Free range chickens are free to roam the fields and live in a more natural state. Generally, the accumulation of droppings is more spread out therefore, the potential to lay the egg in the droppings is greatly reduced. That is not to say it may not happen, but it is less likely.

When chickens are either in cages or in restricted buildings, the potential for disease transmission is also increased because of the close quarters and increased concentration of droppings (litter treatment options are available).  Also, remember the egg shells are porous and will absorb liquids and lots of other things making them unhealthy.

Chickens that are free range and cage free are in the sun and just like humans, they adsorb vitamin-D. The overall health benefit of vitamin-D is another blog (see short video below), but I am sure you have some idea of the benefits; bones, immune system, mood, weight etc.  Well, if the chicken is in better health, the egg produced by the chicken is a healthier egg.

Compare a store bought, 30+ days old egg before it gets to the store to a free range egg.

I am fortunate enough to be able to get my free range eggs from a friend who breeds all kinds of fowl and treats them like her children.  She has even named them all and can tell you their personalities.  Currently, she has over twenty-five (25) different types of eggs I can get; chicken, quail, duck, geese, turkey and pheasant is what I can remember right now. They come is all shapes, colors, sizes and textures.

If you want to breed your own free range chickens, here are some tips she told me about to get your fowl to produce the healthiest eggs:

  1. keep them happy,
  2. do not debeak them,
  3. let them be free range in a natural field,
  4. make them nesting boxes,
  5. feed them scrap + oyster shell + the egg laying pellets and no growth hormones,
  6. give them minerals and vitamins to replace minerals and vitamins lost during the laying season, yes, when they are left to nature taking its course, they have a season and it is not always year round although some may choose to do so,
  7. feed them rice sauteed with grape seed oil + fresh vegetables,
  8. in the winter – add cayenne to their feed to keep them warm and bug free,
  9. in the summer – add garlic powder to their feed to keep them bug free,
  10. talk to them,
  11. thank them for the egg they let you take.

In the end,  the egg you get will the following nutritional values and health benefits:

  1. a deep vibrant yellow-orange firmer creamier yolk that looks like the sun and is high in beta carotene (vitamin-A),
  2. 6 times the vitamin-D as factory store bought eggs,
  3. 4 times the vitamin-E as factory store bought eggs,
  4. 33% less cholesterol as factory store bought eggs,
  5. 25% less saturated fat as factory store bought eggs,
  6. 2 times the omega-3 as factory store bought eggs,
  7. 2 eggs virtually satisfy the RDV of vitamin-D,
  8. does not have any more calories, but 3 times the nutritional value as factory store bought eggs,

Just like humans, fowls “are what they eat”. Food, sun (vitamin-D) and exercise plays a major  role here also. The varied diet  and open air and sun promotes better nutrition for the chicken as well as the egg produced.  As explained in the video above vitamin-D is critical to being healthy.  Apply what is said in the video to fowl.

Additional health promoting benefits of eating free range and cage free eggs are:

  1. better hair,
  2. better nails,
  3. better brain function – omega-3,
  4. better for your heart – omega-3,
  5. better immune system because you are getting local, within your environment,
  6. reduces inflammation,
  7. promotes weight loss,
  8. prevents blood clots,
  9. protects eyes from degeneration,
  10. may prevent breast cancer,
  11. less chances of salmonella.

Open Range Eggs:

 

There is probably more that could be added, but this is all I know. That being said, may I suggest you seek to find a local hatchery that is free range and start getting your eggs. Yes, they are more expensive than the store bought eggs to purchase, but it’s like using “food as preventative medicine”.  Take into consideration what went into taking care of the particular fowl to make sure you are getting a quality product. Therefore, in the long run, it’s cheaper, you are healthier and you will be supporting a local sustainable farmer and his/her family.

Nutrition Consultations Available: Choices N* Nutrition

RECIPES:

Healthy Egg Recipes

101 Cookbooks

Preserving Eggs for the Long Term

REFERENCES:

Nutrition In Eggs WHFoods.com

Nutritional Foods for the Body Mind and Soul

Egg Handling 101

Organic Eggs vs Free Range or Cage Free and Alternatives

WebMD Are Some Eggs Safer Than Others?

Medicine.net: Nutritionists Take a Look at Eggs

Eat Wild.com: Health Benefits of Grass-Fed Products

LiveStrong.com: Health Benefits of Eggs

Shape.com: Ask the Diet Doctor

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.MamaVega.com and http://www.HealthyNeverTastedSoGood.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

June 1, 2012

What’s Causing Our Overweight Nation?

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What is really causing our nation to be overweight? We are the root cause of the problem in our nation. We need to take responsibility and stop pointing a finger at someone else, genes, depression, and the host of other reason we can give whether they are legitimate or not; accept responsibility. It does not matter if it is the government allowing preservatives or chemicals to be added to our food and water supply, we can take action individually. Look at what an individual ant can move and how much more powerful we are in comparison. The ant has the will-power to get the job done and so should we. Focus on making the change for the better.

http://www.nih.gov/health/NIHandweightofthenation/images/screencap.jpg
The Weight of the Nation (short clips)

In general:

  1. we over indulge (in most cases a serving of any given food item is 4 ounces ie meat, fruit, vegetable,
  2. we eat too fast a minimum of 20 minutes,
  3. we do not chew our food long enough,
  4. we lack exercise a mere 20 minutes minimum daily,
  5. we eat too many chemicals in our food
  6. we do not drink enough water (1/2 our weight in ounces)
  7. we do not have enough knowledge in food combining for optimal health

This we can change, we have to get in the right frame of mind to accomplish what we say we want. Talk is cheap, action is needed.  What we should do is:

  1. focus on ourselves first,
  2. focus on getting our job done,
  3. focus on doing the absolute best we can,
  4. set goals like millionaires: 5 yrs from now, 3 yrs from now, 12 months from now, and go backwards in 3 month intervals until we get to one month, 3 weeks and backwards to 1 week then today and every day we should be doing something that pertains to attaining the 5 year goal, every goal of every day, week, month and year is linked to the overall goal
  5. get knowledgeable about food: what is does for the body and in your particular body, pay attention to how your body reacts when you eat certain foods, understand food combinations
  6. eat healthy:
  • 9-12 servings of fruits and vegetables (yes 9-12 and it can be done)
  • in moderation eat: figs and dates unsulphured
  • eliminate processed meats (hot dogs, cold cuts, bacon, etc)
  • eliminate refined sugars
  • reduce carbohydrates from processed white flour and white rice
  • increase whole-grains – brown rice, wild rice, red rice, quinoa,
  • increase consumption of nuts – walnuts, almonds, pistachios, pecans,
  • increase consumption of seeds – sunflower seeds (unsalted), pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds,
  • use coconut oil and coconut butter, olive oil and grape seed oils
  • stick to a water and fiber chart Weight Loss Schedule

We watch the experts like Dr. Oz, Dr. Kline, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution and Deborah Clegg to name a few, but we are still having trouble. A right mind set is necessary. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) 2/3 of our nation is obese. This generation’s life expectancy is shorter than their parents. the top 5 out of the top 10 causes of death is related to being overweight with diabetes, cancer and stroke among them.

According to the experts, as little as 5% weight loss reduces your chances of diabetes. For every 1 pound you are overweight, you have 4 lbs per square inch of pressure on your knees. This joint pressure causes tremendous pain and can be drastically reduced.

Research has shown that having a buddy to exercise and eat with or talk to helps keep you on track. Knowledge is power so keep a log of EVERYTHING you eat and the quantity. Snacking contributes a great deal to the overall problem because we generally do this without thinking. Make conscious decisions about what you are eating. Plan out your meals and snacks.

Exercise is crucial.  No time for the gym!  No problem. Here are some suggestions on getting it done throughout the day:

  1. jumping jacks or jogging in place while waiting for the popcorn to pop (3min),
  2. exercise on commercial breaks (3 min, there are approximately 6 within an hour so you can get an easy 20 here),
  3. side bends while sitting at your desk (1-2 min),
  4. leg lifts while sitting at your desk (3 min) this also helps circulation and reduces swelling of the ankles,
  5. using a resistance band under your chair do arm raises, no bands, keep a 24 ounce can of something in your desk
  6. check out exercises for individuals in wheel chairs and follow them while at your desk.

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

May 30, 2012

School Lunch Food New Guidelines

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2 gluten free school lunch ideas

Found on this Lunchbox.com

New guidelines for school lunches have been created by the U.S. Department of Agriculture under the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act .  Now, both fruits and vegetables must be served every day of the week with specific weekly colors of vegetables.  In the past, schools had the option to offer food that was either fruits or vegetables.

Also, in the past, schools were encouraged to offer food with whole-grains, that is no longer the case. Schools are now required to serve whole-grain rich foods. In other words, children will now be served REAL food with less processed foods with chemicals; back to basic food the body is able to process and absorb.

School lunches will no longer have french fries. This is definitely a boost to their brain power.  For more information on the importance of reducing starchy vegetables and the adverse effect on the brain, read “How to Destarch High Carb Vegetables” on the Live Strong Web site.

The new menu will have reduced saturated fat, trans fat and sodium.  The portions will be more age appropriate as well.  Keeping in line with the reduction of fat is milk. White milk served will be nutrition-rich, low-fat and fat-free.  All chocolate milk will be fat-free.

According to Dr. Keith-Thomas  Ayoob, RD, child nutrition expert who has written books and appears regularly on Good Morning America, many kids are over fed and under nourished. This is very evident, just look around you on a daily basis. Yes, they are being over fed, the wrong high carb foods and not enough vegetables and fruits. Also, parents themselves are indulging in the same bad food habits.

Something I found while shopping at several stores to determine food comparisons was:

  1. the cereals were predominately those with high sugar(s) content,
  2. whole grain cereal were minimal and at a few stores, non were on the shelf as an option,
  3. breads were loaded with preservatives and not whole-grain,
  4. brown rice was hard to locate, not prominently displayed with the white rice.

Suggestion to the food stores:

  1. put the whole-grain cereal boxes at kids eye level,
  2. sample the whole-grain cereals,
  3. encourage vendors to sample the whole-grain cereals,
  4. sample seasonal fruits and vegetables

Suggestion to the food manufacturers:

  1. make the whole-grain cereal boxes kid appealing,
  2. make the high sugar cereal boxes dull and drab,
  3. eliminate the sugar cereal commercials,
  4. create fun kid commercials for the whole-grain cereals,

Visual for parents:

An Excellent Food Plate image from Santa Clarita, CA

School Lunches: All Wrapped Up _ SignalsSVC.com

 

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

May 28, 2012

How to Reduce Produce Food Prices

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First thing to note is the farmers are NOT the ones making all the money. The stores selling the produce are the ones actually reaping most of the profit. Why are the stores selling the produce making so much more? You the consumer have created this produce price monster! How, you ask? Let me explain the process of how the produce or any product gets to market then, it will be evident how you created this “produce price monster” as well as you have the ability to destroy the “produce price monster” as well.

Recipe for Reducing Produce Food Prices

Step one: the farmer prepares the soil, plants the seeds, tends the crop, protects it from the havoc of Mother Nature and finally takes it to a distributor. Now, the farmer knows he must put it at a price the distributor will buy it from him/her. Depending on the weather’s effect on the crop that year, the farmer may only break even. He has to get something for all his work so often he/she has to settle for less than what he/she would like.

Step two: the distributor marks the product up to sell it to the stores. The distributors usually have multiple relationships to move the produce quicker than the farmer could so alone. This is why the farmer went to the distributor in the first place.

Step three: the store buys the produce and marks it up before you purchase it from them. The store’s markup on produce is generally the highest in the store. In many instances this could be 60% above the already marked up distributor price. Why is the markup so high? Spoilage! When YOU, the consumer, do not buy the produce and it spoils, it is thrown away or given to shelters and food banks just before it goes bad.

How can you the consumer have an impact on reducing the price of produce?

  1. buy seasonal (highest nutritional value and boosts immune system),
  2. buy more fresh seasonal produce so the stores have less waste,
  3. shop the reduced for quick sale produce section,
  4. freeze seasonal produce (retains nutrients for later consumption),
  5. can seasonal produce,
  6. eat more seasonal produce (helps immune system and weight maintenance or loss),
  7. buy in a group with others and share for variety
  8. keep pre-cut fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator available for kids to snack on as they want
  9. know what is in season, Peak-Season Interactive Map by State at Epicurious
  10. Agritourism, California Wine Coast Farm and Wine Tours
  11. Farmers’ Market Listing Across the United States, Interactive Map

The average age of California farmers is 58 with 20% age 70.  This mean California needs to grow a new crop of farmers to produce enough food for future generations.

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com and http://www.mamavega.com/blog

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

 

May 22, 2012

What’s In Your Milk?

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Monsanto, Vaccines, rBGH

 

Coconut milk or goats milk is much better for human consumption than cows milk. The proteins in cows milk is difficult on the human digestive system. An indicator of the harshness on the system is evidenced by the increased number of people that are lactose intolerant to the point an entire new industry was created ie Lactade. The proteins in goats milk is very close to human milk and those having difficulty digesting human milk can digest goats milk without any difficulty. coconut milk is even more desirable because it is not from any animal source and contains additional electrolytes and minerals and amino acids vital to human body function.

We have been conditioned to believe cows milk is good for us however, with the Monsanto issue of rBGH (growth hormone) in meats and milk and the detrimental effects on humans who consume them, alternatives are imperative.

Some issues with Monsanto (Samuel S. Epstein, M.D):

  • rBGH makes cows sick.  Monsanto has been forced to admit to about 20 toxic effects,

including mastitis, on its POSILAC label.

  • rBGH milk is contaminated by pus, due to the mastitis commonly induced by rBGH,

and antibiotics used to treat the mastitis.

  • rBGH milk is chemically and nutritionally different than natural milk.
  • rBGH milk is contaminated with rBGH, traces of which are absorbed through the gut.
  • rBGH milk is supercharged with high levels of a natural growth factor (IGF-1), which

is readily absorbed through the gut.

  • Excess levels of IGF-1 have been incriminated as a cause of breast, colon, and

prostate cancers.

  • IGF-1 blocks natural defense mechanisms against early submicroscopic cancers.
  • rBGH factory farms pose a major threat to the viability of small dairy farms.
  • rBGH enriches Monsanto, while posing dangers, without any benefits, to consumers,

especially in view of the current national surplus of milk.

KCAL 9 10 pm Thursday 5/17/2012

Mad Cow Lifted at 2 California Dairies 18 May 2012

http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/05/18/mad-cow-quarantines-lifted-at-2-central-calif-dairies/

First U.S. Case of Mad Cow Disease in 6 years Confirmed in Central California

http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/04/24/first-u-s-case-of-mad-cow-disease-in-6-years-confirmed-in-central-california/%

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

Fries… How to Cook Homemade

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There are several foods that autistic individuals are drawn to and even crave with French fries at the top of the list. However, this “can’t live without” vegetable when fried, roasted, grilled or fried at high temperatures creates acrylamides a toxic human carcinogen that is detrimental to the brain. Given autism is a neurological disorder, these fried vegetables inhibit normal brain function resulting in adversely impacting the forward growth and development of the autistic individual.

Here is what you can do to minimize the toxic affects and hopefully transition the individual to more healthy food choices. Try substituting foods that will have similar tastes and textures. In the meantime, follow the destarching and baking instructions below. This is not a quick process, but isn’t the health of you and your loved one worth the time?

This method should be used with high starch vegetables (beans, peas, corn etc) which are usually root vegetables (yams, potatoes, beets, jicama, etc )

Destarching reduces the toxic human carcinogen acrylamides    by 23% by washing, 35% by soaking 30 minutes and 48% by soaking 2 hours.

Below is how to destarch before beginning the cooking process:

  1. Using a vegetable brush and clean water with a few drops of Clorox or vegetable cleaner, scrub the outside of the vegetables,
  2. cut in strips so they resemble French fries,
  3. as you are cutting the strips, place them in a bowl of ice water,
  4. soak in the ice water for twenty (30) minutes,
  5. scoop the vegetables out of this water making sure to leave all this water behind,
  6. put the vegetables in another bowl of clean ice water,
  7. refrigerate for 2 hours making sure the vegetables are covered with cold water,
  8. remove from refrigerator and pat dry,
  9. vegetables are now ready to bake or fry; baking is my recommendation as it is healthier and any acrylamides produced will be half those created by frying provided the baking temperature is less than what you would use in frying.

Cooking:

  1. Put cut vegetables in boiling water (approximately 170 degrees),
  2. blanch for 3-4 minutes,
  3. remove from water, towel dry and cool for 30 minutes,
  4. spray a baking sheet with a nonstick spray,
  5. at this point some people will put in a bag with corn starch and coat to get extra crispy, but this coating will add to the level of acrylamides which has been  reduced in the destarching process,
  6. place cut vegetables on the sheet in a single layer,
  7. drizzle lightly with olive oil, grape seed oil or coconut oil,
  8. toss with your hands to make sure well coated,
  9. bake at 300 degrees for approximately 2 minutes (very lightly brown, pale),
  10. remove from oven, cool 30 minutes,
  11. put in the freezer for one (1) hour
  12. if you are not going to finish cooking at this point, put in freezer bags to finish cooking later,
  13. if you are going to finish cooking, bake at 375 degrees until the desired browning is attained, approximately 4-5 minutes,
  14. to assist your body with breaking down the remaining carbs, starches and sugars, toss with pureed garlic and onion, fresh ground rosemary and finely chopped Italian parsley
  15. Enjoy without ketchup as it has added sugar and would undermine all your efforts to produce this healthy snack.

For more details on why it is important to destarch, read our post: “How to Destarch High Carb Vegetables”

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

May 20, 2012

How to Destarch High Carb Vegetables

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What are high carb (carbohydrate) starchy vegetables and why do we want to destarch them?

High starch vegetables are vegetables that are high in carb (carbohydrates) and sugars and low in protein.  Some high starch vegetables are: corn, potatoes, beans, peas, yams, and many other root vegetables (vegetables that grow under the ground). High starch vegetables generally contain 80% – 90% carbohydrates  of their nutritional value with 20% indigestible starch.

There are several health and nutritional reasons we should destarch these vegetables before consuming. First, reducing the starch content reduces sugars that lead to increased potential for diabetes, obesity, and other diseases.  the body uses carbohydrates and sugars for energy, but the unused carbohydrates that have been consumed  gets stored and converts to fat.  Reduction in carbohydrate (sugar) intake can prevent rapid rises and falls in blood sugar, which can cause irritability and difficulty concentrating.

“These high carb (carbohydrate) vegetable  cells are held together by pectin, a form of sugar that acts as a type of glue. These cells also contain starch granules—tiny sacs that resemble water balloons, as well as simple sugars. When these starch granules are exposed to water and heat, they begin to swell, eventually bursting, and releasing a shower of swollen starch molecules. ” (www.seriouseats.com)

Why do we want to destarch high carbohydrate vegetables before consuming? Vegetables rich in starch and sugar and low in protein that are cooked at high temperatures crate a toxic substance, acrylamide, that inhibits brain functioning.

Soaking these high carbohydrate vegetables  has benefits beyond removing approximately half the starch. Soaking also  reduces the levels of acrylamide, the chemical formed when foods high in starch are fried or cooked at high heat, such as baking, toasted or roasting. Acrylamides may contribute to cancers and reduction in brain function . Soaking these vegetables for two hours before cooking reduced the level of acrylamide by 48 percent, researchers from Leatherhead Food International reported in the March 2008 issue of the “Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.”

The soaking process may also remove some pesticides that were used in the growing of these vegetables. The soil in which they were grown often contain toxic metals, and are suspected as a possible cause of some cases of autism. The vegetables will feel noticeably smoother as the rough starch granules have been pulled out of the vegetables and are now in the water. The water will appear cloudy.

If possible, eat organic foods as they do not contain pesticides, and have more nutrients (vitamins and minerals). If eating non-organic food, wash fruit and vegetables well if eating the outside.

Below is a healthier way to prepare  root vegetables for coking as you would French fries:

  1. Using a vegetable brush and clean water with a few drops of Clorox or vegetable cleaner, wash and scrub the outside of the vegetables (reduces acrylamides 23%),
  2. cut in strips so they resemble French fries,
  3. as you are cutting the strips, place them in a bowl of ice water,
  4. soak in the ice water for twenty (30) minutes (reduces acrylamides 35%) ,
  5. scoop the vegetables out of this water making sure to leave all this water behind,
  6. put the vegetables in another bowl of clean ice water,
  7. refrigerate for 2 hours making sure the vegetables are covered with cold water (reduces acrylamides 48%),
  8. remove from refrigerator and pat dry,
  9. vegetables are now ready to bake or fry; baking is my recommendation as it is healthier and any acrylamides produced will be half those created by frying provided the baking temperature is less than what you would use in frying.

There are a few more steps to getting that perfect baked vegetable French fry; crispy out side and soft inside.  Check out our blog post: How to Cook Homemade Fries

Health Disclaimer http://www.mamavega.com

All information in this article is provided for your information only and may not be construed as medical advice or instruction. No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents of this information; instead, readers should consult appropriate health professionals and conduct their own independent research on any matter relating to their health and well-being.

The information and opinions expressed here are believed to be accurate, based on the best judgment and research available to the authors at this time, and readers who fail to consult with appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

 

 

 

 

 

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