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Archive for September, 2012

ImageAll kids are inspiring, but I have to give the students at Stuart Hall a “WOW”. I had the great pleasure of speaking to them about nutrition on Tuesday and it was a wonderful time! They listened intently, asked amazing questions and, best of all, laughed at my jokes. 🙂

I also admire and thank the teachers and administration for creating an environment that trains and encourages such impressive critical thinking skills.

The theme of the talk was inspired by a Stuart Hall philosophy that suggests every person has 4 facets: a body, mind, heart and spirit. I completely agree. Just as people have multiple facets, food is not just “food”. We talked about how each of our 4 bodies benefit from Real Food, and what exactly Real Food is!

We discussed topics that are important and relevant for people of all ages who are striving to find or maintain health.

…For a moment, before the bell rang, I felt like I was in middle school again because my Mom and Dad came to watch*! They also videotaped the assembly so anyone who wants to learn about Real Food BuzzNutrition Style can do so through the magic of technology (see links below).

Since the first 5 minutes were lost due to technical difficulty, the first few slides are dictated in a very cheezy manner by me in my living room. But after 3 minutes, the video launches triumphantly into the Stuart Hall auditorium!

*…Luckily my “performance” at Stuart Hall was slightly better than the one my parents witnessed in 3rd grade where I was a mime who sewed her fingers together… during the talent show… in front of my entire school.

If you have a moment to watch, let me know what you think!

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Source: www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/5-amazing-healing-honey-facts?utm_source=www.GreenMedInfo.com&utm_campaign=69240d9e58-Greenmedinfo&utm_medium=email

A few months ago, my parents decided to get a pet… then they decided to get 1,000 of them. Their bees are a’buzz in their hives, diligently making my parents a bucket full of honey.

Beyond adding a delicious touch of sweetness to a frothy mug of hot cocoa or bowl of oatmeal, honey has incredible medicinal properties. Check them out!

1) Raw honey feeds your good gut bacteria: increases the number of Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus plantarum counts 10-100 fold compared with sucrose.

2) Honey fights “bad” bacteria: dissolves the biofilm (barrier that bacteria hide behind) made by MRSA (a really aggressive bacteria that’s resistant to antibiotics).

3) Honey Kills Dental Plaque-Causing Bacteria: Manuka honey, a special honey produced by the flowers of the manuka plant that grows in New Zealand and Australia, was shown at least as effective as the chemical chlorhexidine gluconate, often used in mouthwash, in reducing plaque formation as a mouthwash.

4) Honey Kills Herpes better than drugs:  A 2004 study published in the Medical Science Monitor, showed that topical  honey was far superior to the drug acyclovir (trade name Zovirax) in treating both labial (lip) and genital herpes lesion.

5) Honey Protects Against Gastric Damage: Honey has been shown to prevent alcohol-, indomethacin- (a NSAID pain-killer) and aspirin-induced lesions.

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Environmental Working Group’s take on safe cleaning products!

If each cell in your body could send you a thank you note for making efforts to eliminate toxins from your environment, you’d have 50 billion thank you cards.

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Hide and Seek with Liver

No, no! Um, no, there’s no liver in there…

And let’s say you’re done with Hide and Seek and feeling bold: these look like a scrumptious recipes!

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It’s Liver Time!

No doubt only those who like liver proceeded to read this post… so I’ll consider myself in friendly company and that no faces are twisted in disgusted grimaces. 🙂

Liver from pastured animals is enormously nutritious. They contain more antioxidants than many fruits or vegetables and are replete with fat-soluble vitamins and minerals that we need to reach our full potential for vibrant health. Most should eat liver at least once a week*- pregnant/trying-to-be-pregnant folks should eat it more often (*This all depends on your Metabolic Type). (This blog compares 5 pounds of fruit to 1/4 pound of liver… guess who wins!)

Too bad liver is in such an unattractively-named category: offal. Who would ever want to eat offal? I think part of the decision to name offal something so awful was to reserve it as a prize for those brave enough to eat it despite its name or reputation. Frodo eats offal. Luke Skywalker eats offal. Ghandi would have eaten offal had he eaten meat… Heroes eat offal… or are they heroes because they eat offal? Only history will tell.

Many people ask me “aren’t livers filters for toxins? and so if i eat liver, i’m eating toxins?” No. A liver is not like an air or water filter that accumulates toxins over time. The liver is a metabolically active organ that converts toxins into safe molecules (and sometimes not-safe less-toxic toxins) and gets them on their way out of the body. The more toxins the animal has to clear, the more there will be in the liver- so eat a clean, well-cared for, well-fed, non-medicated animal. (More info on that + some studies and this quote “If you avoid liver because of toxins, you should probably avoid the rest of the animal, too.”)

I currently have 1 pound of liver from Donald’s Meat Processing defrosting in my fridge. I plan on making pĂ„tĂ© with it, which i will freeze in ice cube trays for my weekly hero training.

I’ll either eat the defrosted liver pĂ„tĂ© smeared on celery sticks, or add it to ground meat in a meat sauce over spaghetti squash pasta, meatballs, meatloaf or chili. Of course there’s also stir-fry and creative interpretations of things like Crispy Liver Hash Brown Patties.

Here are some other more elaborate recipes:

::UPDATE::

Okay. I didn’t have time to gather any fancy ingredients so this is what i did with my liver…

Liver slurry!!! I just threw the organ in my food processor, blended till smooth and scooped into ice cube trays.

I know- pretty gross-looking. And slurry sounds as bad as offal. But it was super easy and fast. With Frozen Liver Cubes, the possibilities are endless! I plan to throw 1-2 cubes into anything that I make with ground beef. It makes me sleep deeper at night to know I have such nutrient density in my freezer that’s rife with creative potential just waiting to be unleashed on my tastebuds!

I also did this: I saved a slice of liver to experiment… cubed it in to small 1/2″ cubes, dredged it with coconut flour, salt and cumin and then fried it in beef tallow. I’m not gonna lie. I’m a culinary genius. It was delicious. Fried Liver Cubes!… It was a Cube Party in the BuzzTestKitchen. I turned out the lights proud and satisfied (and replete in my fat-soluble vitamins and heart-healthy cholesterol) but mildly sad that I’d turned the other liver slices into slurry….

::UPDATE #2::

I finally used a liver cube tonight… and I dare say, it was delicious. Here’s what i did:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup collards, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup cauliflower, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cups bone broth
  • 1 liver cube!
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 hamburger patty, cooked
  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 egg yolk

Method

  • Toss collards, cauliflower, broth, liver cube & salt into a pot. Simmer until veggies are at desired tenderness.
  • Crumble patty, sprinkle seeds and plop yolk into a bowl.
  • When veggies are done, pour contents of pot over bowl fixins.
  • Stir & slurp.
  • Optional: add other fixins like strips of toasted nori or miso.

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Source: http://www.crunchybetty.com/activated-charcoal-for-bug-bites-and-other-itchy-situations

I recently mowed my lawn for the first time in my entire life… I was somehow able to dodge that chore as a kid and now that I’ve done it, that makes me sad because… I LOVED mowing my back yard! Check with me again after my 15th mow, but I’m pretty sure I’ll still enjoy it a lot.

The one thing I DON’T enjoy is the subsequent ITCHING! I slathered my skin with natural non-DEET bug spray and no one (human or insect) will convince me to “go chemical”. Also, I haven’t yet learned to identify poison ivy…

So, for the tenacious bugs that do slip through my herbal defenses and the poison ivy that reaches out to tickle my legs and wrists, I plan to use this solution next time.

Beware: this is very messy and the charcoal will likely stain anything it touches…

See the 3 methods on Crunch Betty’s blog (great pictures). They go from really messy to less messy as you move down the page.

*Activated charcoal is also good for whitening teeth!

 

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I spent Friday and most of yesterday in Washington DC. It always takes me a chunk of time to adjust to the greater density of people- Staunton’s streets are never teeming… except maybe when the Findells are playing Staunton Jams!

But once I do adjust to the big city, my first thought is “how impressive!” Such a wide variety of people living in (relative) harmony in a very small, crowded space… It’s only possible when the vast majority implicitly and automatically agrees to behave according to shared social norms.

We’ve all got our idiosyncrasies, but they’re normal to us… if they extend beyond society’s normal but not ours, we may never know it! There is certainly nothing wrong with going against the grain- in fact, I consider myself far from normal and am proud of it. 🙂

But those with mild Autism, Aspergers or ADHD may be desperately misunderstood: A machine part that is not well lubricated will scrape others and cause sparks… So it is for someone who lacks social lubrication like understanding body language & facial expressions or ease of allowing mistakes and inconsistencies or showing empathy and compassionate interest. The behavior of those with mild “afflictions”, can elicit intolerance from others, who may see them as inappropriate or rude, and even go as far as calling them names. Since all people are dear and sweet in their inner cores (at least I think so), this seems quite unfair.

Meanwhile this “different” person experiences stress because they can’t understand social cues and norms that most others take for granted. And especially in today’s society where there’s less connection and interaction, they may have no one bold enough to tell them their behavior is inappropriate. Worst of all, their friends and loved ones experience stress because they just can’t get though to them. Consequently, they miss out on one of life’s best things: relating and connecting with people!

I was motivated to write all of this because of an old episode of This American Life that I listened to on my way home from DC. Act Two featured a wife who’d stumbled upon a questionnaire that helped her diagnose her hubby as having Aspergers. It explained why the last 5 years of their marriage had contained near-intolerable strife. Realization of his condition wiped away her resentment and gave him a new lease on life. He said it was like being present at his own birth.

This man kept a journal to identify what he’d been doing to upset his wife, children, friends and coworkers. He studied it, adapted his behavior and his life improved. (He also studied how to make small talk by watching David Letterman and listening to Howard Stern!)

Unfortunately, there was no mention in this podcast about nutritional interventions for mental health… big miss!

Many psychological issues (Autism, Asperger’s, ADHD, OCD, depression, bipolar and skitzophrenia) can be improved, if not cured, by nutrition. The two main avenues of treatment are 1) special diets to remove foods that have neurotoxic effects, and 2) adjustments in supplements to compensate for nutritional deficiencies.

#2 (nutritional deficiency) may simply result from poor diet, but it could also fall under the fascinating category of nutrigenomics. Some people have genetic flaws that prevent them from being able to utilize nutrients. The resulting nutrient deficiency can have any number of effects, including psychological. For example, a mutation in the MTHFR gene (which makes an enzyme called methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase) will prevent a person from using folate. This can result in psychological issues as well as heart disease and miscarriage. Another common genetic flaw is called Pyroluria.

Come in for a session at BuzzNutrition and I can help you easily and relatively inexpensively test for these genetic flaws!! The good news about these two conditions is that they’re completely manageable by taking a few supplements (every day for life). This supplement regime needs to be individualized (since we’re all biochemically unique) and I can help guide you to the regimen perfect for you.

If you constantly feel “off” or confused by social norms or feel that people just don’t know how to follow life’s rules, there could be something going on! ..If there is “something going on”, it is not a disaster! And it’s so much better to know because then you can DO something about it! There are many ways to cope with mental afflictions and you can find help at BuzzNutrition.

Check out the questionnaire here: http://rdos.net/eng/Aspie-quiz.php

When I took the quiz, I was a little nervous to see the results… But to the surprise of many who know me, I turned out to be “very likely neurotypical”… very likely… I say it depends on the day. 🙂

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