Living the WELL Life

A Right to Know—and the Freedom of Choice

As managing editor of Healthy Living magazine, I stay fairly informed about health and nutrition. As an author, while conducting research for 50 Simple Steps to Save the World’s Rainforests, I read many disturbing reports of negligent practices by governments and agribusiness around the world. Sadly, it has become as clear as day to me that the government, food manufacturers—especially the larger ones—and agribusiness do not place enough value on health, safety and the environment. Profit motives too often prevail. So it is largely up to us consumers to educate ourselves about the origin of our food and how its production affects workers, the planet and our health. And that’s why Proposition 37, the California Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act, is incredibly important.   Read more

Caught Napping - Invasion of the Body Snatchers Redux

I've seen how people have allowed their humanity to drain away. Only it happened
slowly instead of all at once. They didn't seem to mind.  All of us - a little bit – we
harden our hearts, grow callous. Only when we have to fight to stay human do
we realize how precious it is to us, how dear.

                                – Invasion of the Body Snatchers

In last month’s Caught Napping entitled “GMOedipus Rex,” I note how GMO is steadily infiltrating all areas of our lives from our jeans to our genes. Low and behold, not a month later and we are talking about Aspartame, an artificial sweetener, as a GMO product. The very idea that everyday consumables from the cotton in our clothes to artificial sweeteners may contain GMO underscores how pervasive and insidious this phenomenon really is.  We don’t even know where to look.   Read more

Coffee: Choose Organic, Shade-grown and Fair Trade

Opportunities to save rainforests are at our fingertips every day—and sometimes they are as simple as a cup of coffee. 

Modern farming techniques designed to maximize coffee yields have taken a toll on tropical rainforests over the past forty years. As coffee consumers, we can help reverse this trend by supporting the types of coffee cultivation that make a minimal impact on tropical ecosystems and provide a good income for workers. Each person’s coffee choice matters. In the U.S. alone, we drink approximately 400 million cups of coffee per day, or the equivalent to 146 billion cups of coffee per year. Think of the collective impact we could make if we all chose for the rainforest! We make a difference when we choose organic, shade-grown and fair trade brands of coffees.  Read more

Brown Rice and Arsenic…Here We Go Again

Brown Rice and Arsenic…Here We Go Again
Just when I think things are returning to some form of normalcy, there is more panic around food…some for good cause and some, as Jon Stewart says, not so much.

This article is about the latter.

Here we are again discussing arsenic in brown rice and while I am weary of having this same discussion every few years, I am also committed to health and to the health of my readers and viewers and do not take their concerns lightly.

Here is what my latest research has shown me.  Read more

Demo Class-How Sweet It Is!

December 8, 2012 – 10AM to 1PM - $30.00
Ah, sugar. How do we love thee? Let me count the ways. And how do you love us back? With obesity, lack of focus, Type 2 diabetes, elevated triglycerides and more. Are to live a bitter life with no sweet seductions? Of course not. We'll discuss sweet alternatives to sugar, balancing our bodies so sweets are lovely treats, but not craved addictions and how to cook to satisfy our needy sweet tooth.  Read more

Demo Class - Again With the New Year, New You Thing?

January 19, 2013 - 10am to 1pm  $30
Every year it’s the same thing. You’ll get fit and healthy; lose weight, get organized and change your life. And every year, you don’t do it. It’s exhausting. Why can’t you make the changes you need to live a healthy life? Find the answer in this fun and informative class. Hint: it involves growing up…just a little.  Read more

Demo Class - Staying Big and Strong for Life

February 10, 2013 - 10am to 1pm  $30
We struggle with our health more than just about any other country. We know more about health and what it takes to achieve it than just about any country. In this class, we’ll talk about ways to create a strong immune system…which contributes to overall health and well-being.  Read more

Greens and Lettuces to Add to Your Diet

Winter Lettuces
Bibb, delicate leaves and flavor
Black Seeded Simpson, crisp, loose leaves
Deer Tongue, triangular delicate green leaves
Four Seasons, French burgundy butterhead
Freckles, burgundy freckled loose leaves
Read Oakleaf, buttery flavored loose leaves
Rouge D-Hiver, red romaine leaves that turn redder in the cold weather
Salad Bowl, sweet, loose leaf with deep lobed leaves
Tom Thumb, tiny 3-inch heads  Read more

It’s Easy Being Green

Shakespeare coined the phrase ‘salad days’ in ‘Antony and Cleopatra,’ referring to a time of youth and innocence. In modern days, this same phrase indicates the peak of life, regardless of age. I wonder if The Bard really knew what he was saying, if he knew the value of greens in keeping us youthful and vital.

Leafy green vegetables (often known as winter greens because of their viability in cold weather) are the greatest powerhouses of nutrition we can imagine. Loaded with antioxidants to slow down aging, vitamin C and D for strong bones; vitamin K for proper clotting of blood and liver synthesizing of protein; fiber for digestion; chlorophyll for strong red blood cells, protein (yes, protein…), calcium, iron and other essential minerals and buckets of moisture to keep us hydrated. And did I mention that they are rich in compounds that battle cancer? Whew!  Read more

GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)…Playing Roulette with Our Lives

G-M-what’s? GMOs are genetically modified organisms that are engineered in a lab, in petri dishes, without any influence from Mother Nature, and then used to create new breeds of foods (and other living things). DNA and other compounds, like pesticides, are incorporated into organisms for an end purpose. We know little about the long-term effects of these foods on us and the planet.

“Round-Up Ready” is the name given to soy and corn that was developed by Monsanto and involves the pesticide Round Up being integrated right into the seeds before they are planted. The theory they are trying to sell is that this will require less pesticides to be sprayed, but according to experts at Cornell University, this practice has ended up requiring a more intense use of pesticides as the plants around the corn and soy (and the corn and soy themselves) grow resistant to the Round Up. Mistake?  Read more

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