A Balanced Approach to Wellness!

Archive for the ‘Food & drink’ Category

The harm we bring when Fresh finishes last

Fruit and veggies

  • A dinner at Restaurant A delivers a cooked meat portion, rice, and a fried vegetable portion. The parsley sprig is decorative.
  • A dinner at Restaurant B delivers a pizza with meat and canned mushrooms.
  • A breakfast at Restaurant C offers eggs with potatoes or eggs with meat. Bread on the side.
  • An on-the-run food chain provides the meat in a bun with a piece of tomato and lettuce. The tomato and lettuce were cut much earlier.
  • A bakery that serves meals creates dishes that tantalize the eyes and nose, but challenge the small intestine. Only the decorative fresh peach slice lessens the challenge.

Today’s dining specializes in challenges to the small intestine, pancreas, and brain (and other organs and systems in the body). The missing fresh fruits and vegetables harm the body’s ability to heal. Healing requires the qualities that fresh fruits and vegetables possess.

A vitamin and mineral tablet can’t replace the capabilities of the fresh fruit and vegetables. A meal-in-a-bar can’t replicate fruit and vegetable power. Fruit drink isn’t related to fruit in its peel. Ketchup is not tomato at its best.

When fresh finishes last, health becomes compromised. When fresh finishes last, emotions erupt. When fresh finishes last, future health is less secure.

The food pyramids that show fruit and vegetables at the bottom are correct. Fruit and vegetables are the fuel providers that our bodies need to function effectively. A balanced diet provides vegetables in salads, main dishes, and soups and fruit as snacks, desserts, and appetizers.

Tangy Banana Ice Cream (dairy-free, sugar-free, vegan, raw, and gluten-free)

Tangy banana ice cream

Giving up sugar doesn’t mean giving up sweet treats.

A couple days ago, I signed a contract to overcome cravings by giving up sugar (see the post “My Contract for Overcoming Cravings“). I still eat fruit and use sweeteners such as unprocessed honey, agave, and maple syrup.

Here is a recipe for a mock ice cream that doesn’t feed the sugar beast, and satisfies the desire for sweetness. It’s on my Yumtritious Eating! blog.

About one and a half cups, for 3-4 small servings

Ingredients

2 large frozen bananas

juice from 1 or 2 tangerines or clementines to make 1/3 cup juice

1  1/2 Tbsp carob powder

Steps

  1. Juice the tangerines or clementines and measure out 1/3 cup juice. Pour into a food processor with the S blade.
    Clementine oranges
  2. Add the carob powder to the food processor.
  3. Preferably, the bananas were cut into chunks before they were put into the freezer. If not, cut the frozen bananas into medium-size pieces. Add the banana pieces to the food processor.
  4. Process the ingredients until smooth. Process the mixture quickly so that it doesn’t melt. You might need to stir by hand to mix in all the juice and carob powder.
  5. Spoon into dishes and serve immediately!  Yumtritious!

I’m going to make a sweet treat with strawberries this afternoon. If it turns out yummy (because for sure it will be nutritious), I’ll post it on Yumtritious Eating!

Child Abuse with a Spoonful of Sugar

sweets for children

My childhood contained many spoonfuls of sugar. It started off with sweetened formula. There were doughnuts and ice cream, sugar cubes and sodas. Lollipops and candy canes were gifts at doctor appointments and my parents’ business friends’ offices. Halloween provided weeks of sugary treats. The other holidays had their special sweet treats and customary sweet dishes. My family’s snack drawer was full of snack cakes, cookies, and sno balls. At school, lunches included a sweet treat and the food provided was often sweetened. For breakfast, I ate sweetened cereals, sweetened oatmeal, and instant breakfast drinks.  Family trips to the local ice cream parlors and baseball games led to sweet celebrations galore.  Ice tea was always sweetened as were the fresh strawberries. Sunday morning pancakes smothered with imitation maple syrup were the weekly food highlight. Crackers, canned savory foods, spreads, and fast foods were sweetened as well. My diet was sweet foods with occasional breaks for the unsweetened things. My diet was typical of children growing up in the 60s and 70s in the United States. All that sweetness influenced my health, my eating habits, and my thinking.

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This blog post is written to parents and grandparents to make them aware that their choices to sweeten the lives of their children and grandchildren delivers misery instead of the intended happiness. Sweetening a child’s life is love misguided.

Note: This blog post is not my opinion although I do agree with it. The wisdom presented here is straight from Spiritual Presence.

Parents and grandparents,

“Most of our diet is meant to be non-sweet. The sweet part should be about 8%, and of that 8%, all should be from natural sources—that is how our bodies are designed. .” …from the post “Sweeteners: The Facts

More than 8% sweetness leads to:

  • changed appetite (wanting foods for their sweetness rather than for their satisfaction of hunger)
  • emotional turmoil
  • malfunctioning of the processes that handle sweetness
  • reduced resilience of body parts (for example, teeth)
  • illness
  • compromised attention capabilities
  • over-desire for sweetness
  • reduced muscle activity
  • feelings of negativity towards self

from the post “The Facts: Living in a World of Sweetened Sustenance

Through sweets, well-meaning parents feed their children emotional turmoil and compromised attention capabilities. These changes to natural temperament and attentiveness cause problems with peers and in school.

Through sweets, well-intentioned parents offer their children reduced resilience of body parts as rewards for good behavior and grades. Even parents who know the facts about sweetness succumb to societal pressure to provide their children with changed appetite and over-desire for sweetness. Combating the pervasiveness of sweetness in society is not easy.

Rewarding children using sweets that contribute to feelings of negativity towards themselves is building people who are unsure of themselves. Rewarding children with causers of malfunctioning of the processes that handle sweetness is mistaken gifting.

Sweets that are natural, such as fruit and pure maple syrup, are building unless they exceed the 8% limit. Sweets that are destructive, such as sugar and corn syrup, cause disruptions in functioning and in future functioning.

Going against the typical way of pushing sweets onto children is not easy. Defying the advertisers and makers of sweet things is work. Understanding what you are doing each time you give your child a soda or a candy bar or a sweetened cereal, might help you change your outlook on how you stock your house and how you supply nutrition to the children you love with all your heart.

The Facts: Living in a World of Sweetened Sustenance

sweets 2

Life in modern societies entails navigating sweetness at every food-intake turn:

  • Sweeteners are added to foods that don’t seem to be sweet. Sweeteners are added to sweet foods to sweeten them more.
  • Advertisements urge us to desire sweet foods as a way to live the good life. Retail establishments place sweets near checkout counters to up the items we buy from them.
  • Sweets are viewed as appropriate gifts for those who are ill or grieving. Sweets are viewed as expressions of love and caring.
  • Incentives to improve often include sweet rewards. Meals often end with sweets as the highlight of the meal.

Fact #1: Sweetness can be nourishing.

As written in the post “Sweeteners: The Facts”

“Sweets from nature nourish.”

The closer to nature the sweetener, the more it can sweeten without harming. Choosing fruit as a dessert instead of cake is caring for the body. Using raw unprocessed honey or pure maple syrup as a sweetener instead of sugar or artificial sweeteners is protecting the body. Eating whole grains, which contain natural sweetening, instead of processed grains, is supporting the body’s health.

Fact #2: Body-mind balance is unavailable when processed sweeteners are consumed.

Our bodies are designed to desire balance. The foods we eat contribute to the balance or cause imbalance. Natural sweets are processed properly and only upset the balance when they are over-consumed or when the body is challenged by illness or disease.

Processed sweeteners (which include sugar, artificial sweeteners, and corn syrup, among others) always cause imbalance. The body is not designed to handle them. Their effects can be felt if the body has an immediate reaction, which often happens the first time the processed sweetener is consumed. If the reaction is ignored, the body handles the sweetener through improvised processes.

Fact #3: Eating a diet of more than 8% sweet causes crises in the body.

“Most of our diet is meant to be non-sweet. The sweet part should be about 8%, and of that 8%, all should be from natural sources—that is how our bodies are designed. .” …from the post “Sweeteners: The Facts“

Design is design. Our bodies are not designed nor built to handle more than 8% sweetness in a day. More than 8% sweetness leads to:

  • changed appetite (wanting foods for their sweetness rather than for their satisfaction of hunger)
  • emotional turmoil
  • malfunctioning of the processes that handle sweetness
  • reduced resilience of body parts (for example, teeth)
  • illness
  • compromised attention capabilities
  • over-desire for sweetness
  • reduced muscle activity
  • feelings of negativity towards self

When the percentage is higher than 20%, all of the results listed above are equally affected. When the percentage is higher than 30% day after day, the speed at which the body is negatively affected quickens.

Design is design. The body requires nourishment that is nourishing.

Fact #4: The body’s processing of artificial sweeteners is convoluted.

Artificial sweeteners play so much havoc on the body that it is hard to understand the damage they do. Their processing in the body depends on the body’s state of health.

A person in stable health processes artificial sweeteners without involving processes that are not usually used if the person is not tired or hungry. If the person is tired or hungry at the time of artificial sweetener consumption, more processes get involved to neutralize the effects of the disturbing presence.

A person in compromised health processes artificial sweeteners differently than described for a person in stable health who is tired or hungry. Compromised health can be different depending on age, sex, and weather conditions so that the processing of the artificial sweeteners differs.

Artificial sweeteners have been studied and their ill effects have been documented. Artificial sweeteners are for consumption in these cases: when you are eating a plastic bag that needs sweetening or when you are eating tree bark that needs flavor. In other words, never!

 

These last three blog posts ( “Sweeteners: The Facts”  and “The Facts: Sweeteners from natural to laboratory-made, Best & Worst”) have been offered to you so that you can choose your sweet treats wisely. The suffering that comes from overindulgence in sweets is not worth the momentary pleasurable sweet taste in the mouth. Resisting the call of advertisers and the lure of desserts that are too sweetened is not easy, but is kind to your body.

Note: The source of the information provided here is divine inspiration.

The Facts: Sweeteners from natural to laboratory-made, Best & Worst

sweets

“Foods that are sweet blind us. Their charismatic taste overtakes our reasoning, and we crave their company. Our willpower weakens and we are held captive by our desire for repetition of the sweet sensations in our mouths.” …from the post “Sweeteners: The Facts

Knowing that we are held captive by the irresistible pull of sweetness is helpful for us to feel less guilty about wanting sweet additions to our meals. The goal is to eat the sweets that nourish and not the ones that disturb the balance inside our bodies.

Note: Food intake is part of a balanced life. Eating well but ignoring emotional health will not bring balance. Over-focusing on food intake and ignoring community responsibility will not bring balance.

“Most of our diet is meant to be non-sweet. The sweet part should be about 8%, and of that 8%, all should be from natural sources—that is how our bodies are designed. .” …from the post “Sweeteners: The Facts

With this fact in mind, choosing to fill the 8% of sweetness with nourishing sweets is wise.

Best sweets and sweeteners

Here are the best sweets and sweeteners to eat, in the order of nutritional value.

  1. Fruit
  2. Raw unprocessed honey / pure maple syrup
    The least amount of processing provides the most nutritious sweetener.
  3. Date syrup (also known as date honey)
    Dates can also be used as a sweetener (as well as raisins and other dried fruit).
  4. Stevia / blackstrap molasses / fruit juice
    Stevia is sold in packets and larger containers. The packets are ecologically wasteful.
  5. Agave / coconut sugar
    Coconut sugar has societal implications, so use it sparingly.
  6. Pasteurized honey / dark molasses

Worst

Here are the sweeteners that our bodies don’t want. They cause havoc inside our bodies and disrupt balance. Some of these sweeteners are accepted forms of sweetening, but they really shouldn’t be.

  1. Neohesperidine dihydrochalcone (E959) / saccharin / sugar from sugar beets
    Sugar from sugar beets are listed separately from sugar from sugar cane because of processing considerations.
  2. Aspartame / Sucralose / sugar from sugar cane
  3. Cyclamate (E952) / light brown sugar
  4. Asesulfame potassium (E950) / corn syrup
    Light and dark corn syrup are equally disruptive.
  5. Evaporated cane juice
  6. Light molasses

Sweeteners not ranked

There are many more sweeteners than those listed in this blog post. The following sweeteners were not listed above because of production or unresolved issues.

  • Xylotol
    This sweetener is not listed above, although many people extol its usage, because it has unresolved issues. It has not been studied enough to deserve its praise.
  • Erythritol
    This sweetener has unresolved issues. It should be used sparingly.
  • Rice syrup
    This sweetener has unresolved issues. It is better than all the sweeteners listed in the “Worst” section. It is not listed in the “Best” section because of the unresolved issues.
  • Monk fruit
    This sweetener is a “Best” sweetener when traditional processing is used. Non-traditional processing, which is how most of this sweetener is distributed, leads to societal issues.
  • Lucuma powder
    This sweetener has societal issues.

8% is important

Choosing how we fill the 8% can affect our health currently and in the future. Some sweeteners cause immediate effects and some contribute to health issues in the future. Choosing from the “Worst” section is often not a real choice because many of those sweeteners are in processed foods. Sugar is such an accepted sweetener that people don’t realize what they are doing to their bodies when they consume it. Choosing from the “Best” section whenever possible is what the body prefers. Satisfying the sweet tooth with sweeteners that the body can handle adds to health.

Facts to come

The next post will present sweetness from a different view.

Note: The source of the information provided here is divine inspiration.

 

Sweeteners: The Facts

Fruit

The Main Fact

Foods that are sweet blind us. Their charismatic taste overtakes our reasoning, and we crave their company. Our willpower weakens and we are held captive by our desire for repetition of the sweet sensations in our mouths.

The Source Fact

Processed sweeteners weaken our bodies. Sweets from nature nourish. Naturally sweetened foods—fruits and grains—satisfy the desire for sweetness without imprisoning us in the desire for more. They call our names, we eat them, and our bodies are captive, yet balanced.

The Added Sweetener Fact

Most of our diet is meant to be non-sweet. The sweet part should be about 8%, and of that 8%, all should be from natural sources—that is how our bodies are designed.

Added sweeteners upset the balance, and the 8% is overtaken by distancing from the natural appetite. Added sugar in a breakfast drink begins the day’s desire for more. Sweeteners added to breakfast foods continue the desire. The next sweet fix might come at lunch, but the call for more sweetness may encourage a mid-morning swallowing of sweetened food. And so the day goes. By nighttime, the 8% may have risen to 70%, depending on willpower and availability.

Above 8% skews reasoning and upsets balance.

Facts to come

The next post will present the ranking of best and worst sweeteners and the facts about the worst ones.

Note: The source of the information provided here is divine inspiration.

Serve the Booze to the Baby?

empty-wine-glass-md

Moderate drinking during pregnancy? Wine? Beer? When celebrating? When depressed? With food? Instead of food? To celebrate the news? After seeing the first ultrasound? To forget the overwhelming physical changes? To get in the mood? To feel separate from the baby?

Doctors suggest non-consumption of alcoholic beverages during the entire pregnancy. Scientific tests are territorily bound, and what one study says in one country differs from a study in another country. The effects of drinking too much alcohol are well known. This post is about alcohol in relation to the baby and the mother’s responsibility for his or her care.

Reasons for drinking alcoholic beverages abound. To drown one’s sorrows is generally not a good idea, pregnant or not. To release good sense is definitely not a good idea, pregnant or not.

The fetus receives nourishment from the mother, and alcoholic beverages contribute to the contribution. The nourishing aspects of alcoholic beverages are minor, so from that point of view drinking alcoholic beverages is not helpful to the baby. The baby needs ongoing support, and the more the support is given with awareness, the further the mother can protect her baby.

The mood of the mother is important. Her excitement and her fears contribute to the nourishment of the baby. A celebratory drink to acknowledge the baby forming inside her body neither harms nor helps the baby grow. Using alcohol to get through life, whether to forget the pregnancy or to ignore the responsibilities of pregnancy, influences the baby depending on the amount of alcohol consumed and the amount of food eaten while the alcohol was consumed.

A woman chooses her actions based on her knowledge, her support system (partner, family, and friends), and her society. If her society condemns drinking during pregnancy, she is best off sustaining because of guilt feelings. If her society accepts drinking during pregnancy, she imbibes with the backing of her society.

Alcoholic drinks should not be pushed on a pregnant woman, and neither the father of the baby nor any other supporting person should encourage her to drink. Alcoholic drinks and other substances that induce detachment from the fetus growing inside of her should be limited by the mother and those around.

 

Note: Some of the information in this post has been scientifically investigated. Some of the information is divinely inspired.

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