Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Just read this article from one of my favorite websites, and in addition found that the subject matter gave me more insight into a food that happens to be great for me, simply because I'm a 'O' blood type. Read on.

Abuja, Sep 18, 2009 (Daily Trust/All Africa Global Media via COMTEX) -- Nuts generally have become popular as all round source of nutrition and are favoured by those who exercise regularly as a good source of protein and energy. Walnuts which are popularly known as awusa or asala in Yoruba, arinsa in Igbira add extra nutrition, flavor and crunch to one's meal.

These nuts, which are harvested in December and are available all year round come from an ornamental tree that is highly priced for its beauty. The walnut kernel consists of two bumpy lobes that look like abstract butterflies. The lobes are off white in colour and covered by a thin, light brown skin. They are particularly attached to each other while the kernel is enclosed in round or oblong shells that are brown or black in colour and they are hard.

Although the nuts are said to have a high fat content, it plays a role in the provision of a balance diet; with beneficiary nutritional contents covering all the important food groups.

When it comes to their health benefits, walnuts definitely are regarded as a "brain food" not only because of the wrinkled brain like appearance of their shells but because of their high concentration of omega 3 fats.

A nutritionist, Dr Kabir az-Zubair, Director, Molecular Biology & Bioinformatics of National Biotechnology Development Agency, Federal Ministry of Science & Technology, said the human brain is made up of more than 60% structural fats and for the brain cells to function properly, these structural fats need to be primarily the omega 3 fats which are mostly found in walnuts.

"Walnut is an excellent source of omega 3 essential fatty acids, a special type of protective fat the body cannot manufacture. It has many health benefits ranging from cardiovascular protection, to the promotion of better cognitive function and the anti-inflammatory benefit that is useful for Asthma patients, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory skin diseases such as Eczema and psoriasis; walnuts also contain an anti-oxidant compound called ellagic acid that supports the immune system and appears to have several anti-cancer properties," he said.

These nutritious nuts are also important source of monounsaturated fats amounted to 15% of the fats found in walnuts so adding it to ones diet is an important step in improving cardiovascular health. Studies on the dietary value of walnut show that increasing the dietary intake of walnuts as favourable effects on high cholesterol levels and other cardiovascular risk factors.

In addition to their heart protective monounsaturated fats, walnuts concentration of omega-3 essential fatty acids is also responsible for the favourable effects walnut consumption produces on cardiovascular risk factors.

Omega-3s benefit the cardiovascular system by assisting in preventing erratic heart rhythms, making blood less likely to clot inside arteries (which is the proximate cause of most heart attacks) and improve the ratio of good (HDL) cholesterol to potentially harmful (LDL) cholesterol. Omega-3s also reduce inflammation, which is a key component in the processes that turn cholesterol into artery clogging plaques.

Walnuts also contain relatively high levels of L-arginine, an essential amino acid which becomes a special import in hypertensive persons. Human body according to experts converts l-arginine into nitric oxide, a chemical that helps keep the inner walls of blood vessels smooth and allows blood vessels to relax. Since individuals with hypertension find it difficult to maintain normal nitric oxide levels which may also lead to other significant health issues such as diabetes and heart problems, walnuts can serve as a great addition to their diets.

In a research published by the British Journal of Nutrition which identified several nuts among plant foods with highest total antioxidant content, suggests that walnuts and chestnuts have the highest antioxidant content of tree nuts with walnuts delivering more than 20mmol antioxidant per 3ounces (100gm).

The research concluded that, consumption of nuts at least 4 times in a week showed a 37% reduced risk of coronary heart disease while each additional serving of nuts per week shows 8.3% reduced risk of cardiovascular and coronary heart disease, intake of a handful of walnuts at least 4times in a week is recommended for persons suffering from these diseases.

Prevention and control of high blood pressure is also one of the benefits derived from eating walnuts because it is gathered that individuals whose diets provide greater amount of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid have lower blood pressure than those who consume less and walnuts has been identified as an excellent source of this essential fats.

It also improves the cholesterol profile in persons with type 2 diabetes. In patients with type 2 diabetes, a daily ounce of walnuts in a diet in which 30% of calories came from fat related into a significant improvement in subject's cholesterol profile. The nuts are found to reduce levels of several molecules that promote atherosclerosis.

Preventing gallbladder disease may be as easy as having a handful of walnuts as part of ones diet or tossing some walnuts on salad because it helps in prevention of gallstones in women. For a better night sleep, sprinkling ones dinner with a handful of walnuts is good because it is a source of bio-available melatonin - a hormone produced by the pineal gland, which is involved in inducing and regulating sleep and it's also a powerful antioxidant in bio - available form, making the perfect evening meal for a natural good night sleep.

Apart from the dietary benefit of walnuts, straw-coloured clear oil can also be extracted from fresh walnuts which must be protected from the light and oxidant agents because it becomes rancid easily. This oil is used as a tonic for children and aged people as well as a dry agent for painting for the rapidity by which colours dry in it.

The nutritional value of walnuts can be likened to that of cheese because of its high content of proteins and fats. Walnuts have a high source of essential unsaturated fatty acids such as alfa-linoleic acid and their contents in proteins and vitamins are good, especially in vitamins B and E groups.

Maintenance of healthy levels of melatonin is important for everyone over the age of 40 since the amount of the hormones produced by the human body decreases significantly as humans age. This reduction in antioxidant protection may be related to the development of free radical related diseases later in life; thus walnuts are highly recommended for everybody for healthy living.

by Romoke W. Ahmad ( contributing writer)

Stephanie Arit offers other healthfilled possibilities for you:

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Young Living Essential Oils distributor Mary Lou Jacobsen submitted the following tip to the Young Living Newsletter PS I recently did the same thing:
“I left a batch of towels in the washer on a hot day and when I returned home they had gone sour. Even after rewashing them, I was not happy with the way they smelled. So I added a few drops of Purification® essential oil blend to the batch and rewashed them. I loved they way they smelled. Now, I keep a bottle of Purification above my washer and add a few drops every time I wash my towels.”

Item No. 3399 15 ml

(This tip comes directly from a distributor and is passed on to you. )

Please order your Young Living Pure Essential Oils:

Also find more green and healthy options from

Learn how to individualize your personal healthy journey at:


Consumers are wasting billions of dollars a year on billions of gallons of bottled water in large part because advertising spin has led them to believe that water in a bottle is safer or better than tap water.

Truth is, tap water generally is just as safe, clean, and healthy as bottled water, and in many cases more so. In fact, the federal government requires far more rigorous and frequent safety testing and monitoring of municipal drinking water. The Environmental Protection Agency requires that utility companies test municipal water hundreds of times per month, while the Food and Drug Administration requires only one water test per week by bottling companies.

Bottled water causes many equity, public health, and environmental problems. Beverage companies often take water from municipal or underground sources that local people need. As much as 40 percent of bottled water comes from the tap. Producing plastic bottles uses energy and emits toxic chemicals. Transporting the bottled water spews pollution into the air, adding to global climate change.

Taking Back the Tap Helps Your Health, Your Pocketbook, and Our Environment
By turning to your home tap, you’ll avoid the arsenic, microbes, toxins, and other pollutants that tests have found in various bottled water brands. What’s more, you’ll face less risk of exposure to chemicals that could leach from the plastic bottle into the water.

Turning to tap water could help you save money, as well. Tap water costs about $0.002 per gallon compared to the $0.89 to $8.26 per gallon charge for bottled water.

Giving up bottled water also helps our environment. Annual production of the plastic (PET or polyethylene) bottles to meet U.S. consumer demand for bottled water takes the equivalent of about 17.6 million barrels of oil, not including the cost of transporting the bottled water to consumers. That more or less equals the amount of oil required to fuel more than one million vehicles on U.S. roads each year. Worldwide bottling of water uses about 2.7 million tons of plastic each year. And in the end, about 86 percent of the empty plastic water bottles in the United States land in the garbage instead of being recycled.

Read about water filters here.

Food & Water Watch is an organization dedicated to the belief that the public should be able to count on our government to oversee and protect the quality and safety of food and water. For more information, go to




Women: Be mindful of your Soda Drinking

At a picnic this weekend, I listened as an extended family member nagged at kids to stay away from the cola and other types of soda pop being served. “They rot your teeth,” one grandmother admonished her grandkids. But she herself was drinking a big glass of Diet Pepsi, and didn’t seem aware of the irony of her pronouncement: It’s actually older women who are most at risk of health problems from drinking cola and other fizzy soft drinks.

Every six months or so, it seems, a new warning comes out about the dangers of drinking too much soda. And you may feel you’ve heard it all. But a couple of new studies have led experts to begin calling for a public health campaign to warn women about cola consumption.

Women are at greater risk of osteoporosis, or bone thinning, as they get older. Most of us already know that. But many people don’t realize that drinking a lot of cola and other soft drinks increases osteoporosis risk — or causes the disease to progress faster. The phosphoric acid that makes fizzy drinks fizz actually eats away at bone, making it more porous.

This news, while worrying, has been known for a while. But now scientists are sounding the alarm that soft drinks weaken muscles as well as bones. According to a new study, drinking large amounts of cola (the study focused on people who drank two quarts or more a day) causes potassium levels in the blood to fall, which can lead to a severe deficiency. And potassium deficiency, as athletes know, makes you feel weak and dizzy, and causes muscles to atrophy.

Researchers aren’t sure yet exactly how soft drinks are causing the potassium deficiency; they theorize that flooding the kidneys with caffeine and sugar causes them to filter out too much potassium from cells. This is a dangerous double whammy for older women, who have a higher risk of falling and hip fracture than men do.

Of course, the real message health and nutrition experts are trying to convey is that we need more calcium and other bone- and muscle-building nutrients in our bodies, and fewer empty calories.

So what to do when soda’s out but you’re thirsty and milk just won’t cut it? Try water, lemonade, or iced tea.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Dr Oz says: The Nose Knows

The Nose Knows
By the end of the 2-week study, the people who had sniffed peppermint every couple of hours during the day had also consumed fewer calories and eaten less fat, less saturated fat, and less sugar than the nonsniffers did. Bonus: Peppermint also reduces feelings of hunger. Here's another scent that may help curb your appetite.

Get yours

Protect yourself and the earth, choose to use a water filter, they're safer and surer

Get Off the Bottle and on the Filter
posted by Megan, selected from Positively Green Sep 17, 2009

Last year Americans spent 15 billion dollars on bottled water and the sales estimate for 2007 is 16 billion dollars. One can argue that it’s money down the drain because the truth has been watered down by some of the largest bottlers. About 24% of bottled water is just filtered tap water; like Aquafina and Dasani.

You can achieve exactly the same quality of water by installing a filter on your faucet at home. If the cost ($100 or less) of purchasing a filter for your home causes you to hesitate, consider this; you can buy a half-liter of bottled water for $1.35. If you filled this same bottle with filtered tap water once a day, it would take roughly 10 years before you spent that $1.35. However, if you purchased one bottle of water every day, after 10 years you will have spent $4,927.50.


Besides the incredible savings that you get with filtered tap water, there are environmental and socially responsible reasons that just strengthen the case for the tap.

Environmental Reasons - Plastic is a petroleum based product. The pollutants associated with the manufacture and transportation of these plastic bottles is unnecessarily damaging to the environment. Of the 50 billion plastic water bottles used last year, about 38 billion went straight to landfills. The plastic in those landfilled bottles is worth around $1 billion. 12 billion bottles were recycled, but remember that plastic doesn’t recycle into the same quality plastic. It can only be recycled a finite number of times before it can no longer be recycled.

Socially Responsible Reasons - Like other water from pristine ecosystems, Fiji bottled water is collected from natural sources and shipped halfway across the earth to the US where we already have clean drinking water in every home. Unfortunately, Figi doesn’t have a great public water system and last year Figians fell ill with typhoid casued by contaminated drinking water. When over 1 billion people in the world don’t have access to safe drinking water, buying bottled water with all its associated financial, environmental and social costs seems irresponsible – especially when a home filter gives you the same or better quality water than bottled water.

Water Filters by Aquasana are great.

Check them out at:

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Showerheads a Breeding Ground for Dangerous Bacteria

From one of my favorite health informing websites:

Study: Showerheads a Breeding Ground for Dangerous Bacteria
Chicago Tribune


CHICAGO - If your morning shower doesn't wake you up, this sure might: Dangerous bacteria may be spraying out of your showerhead, right into your face, according to a new study.

Healthy people probably don't need to worry. But the opportunistic microbes, which thrive in the most, dark and wet environment of a showerhead, might cause problems if you're pregnant, a substance abuser or otherwise immune compromised with cystic fibrosis, cancer, AIDS or a recent organ transplant, the researchers said in the findings published in this month's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The main culprit is an organism called Mycobacterium avium, a relative of the bacteria that causes tuberculosis. M. avium infections are increasingly common, perhaps because we take more showers than baths. Unlike baths, showerheads deliver the microorganisms as aerosolized particles that are small enough to be inhaled into the lungs.

The research team from the University of Colorado, which previously warned us that M. avium was lurking in the soap scum on vinyl shower curtains, sampled 45 showerheads in homes, apartments and public places around the country. They found that the showerheads don't just harbor the potentially infectious microbes; they enrich their growth.

Unfortunately, showerheads have nooks and crannies that make them hard to clean. Products with bleach can temporarily remove many microbes, but they just grow back. An all-metal showerhead, which microbes have a hard time grabbing, might be a good option if you're immune compromised, the researchers said.

Filtered showerheads could be replaced weekly. Or try bathing, which won't splash microbes into the air as much as showers.

Look for earth friendly and health friendly products such as water filters for showers and drinking water at:


Wednesday, September 2, 2009


Finding a good mix to the foods you eat together can help the body break down foods and digest nutrients properly. Too many carbohydrates taken with protein, like meat and potatoes, can be hard for the body to break down leaving you feeling as if food is just sitting on the gut. Proteins should be mixed with vegetables, meat and a salad. The body will be able to break it down easily and the proper amount of nutrients will be absorbed.
Eat to your health and to better eyesight, these food sources of the antioxidants (carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc):
• Vitamin E: whole grains, vegetable oil, eggs, nuts
• Zinc: Meat, poultry, fish, whole grains, dairy products
• Beta carotene: Carrots, kale, spinach
• Vitamin C: Citrus fruits and juices, green peppers, broccoli, and potatoes
Because Vitamins C and E may also help to inhibit the development or progression of cataracts.
And other elements potentially important nutrients include two related carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin; vitamins C and E; and docosahexanoic acid, or DHA, found primarily in fish oil.



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