Category Archives: Health

What are Anti Nutrients?

Are anti-nutrients harmful?

broccoli growing in the ground

The takeaway: The pros and cons of anti-nutrients on long-term human health is an area of active research. Though certain foods may contain residual amounts of anti-nutrients after processing and cooking, the health benefits of eating these foods outweigh any potential negative nutritional effects. Eating a variety of nutritious foods daily and avoiding eating large amounts of a single food at one meal can help to offset minor losses in nutrient absorption caused by anti-nutrients.

The term “anti-nutrients” suggests what they are. Whereas nutrients are substances that nourish plants and animals to grow and live, anti-nutrients earn their title because they can block the absorption of nutrients. Anti-nutrients are naturally found in animals and many plant-based foods. In plants, they are compounds designed to protect from bacterial infections and being eaten by insects. [1]

There are several compounds in the foods we eat classified as anti-nutrients. Examples include:

  • Glucosinolates in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage)—can prevent the absorption of iodine, which may then interfere with thyroid function and cause goiter. Those already with an iodine deficiency or a condition called hypothyroidism are most susceptible.
  • Lectins in legumes (beans, peanuts, soybeans), whole grains—can interfere with the absorption of calcium, iron, phosphorus, and zinc.
  • Oxalates in green leafy vegetables, tea—can bind to calcium and prevent it from being absorbed.
  • Phytates (phytic acid) in whole grains, seeds, legumes, some nuts—can decrease the absorption of ironzincmagnesium, and calcium. [2,3]
  • Saponins in legumes, whole grains—can interfere with normal nutrient absorption.
  • Tannins in tea, coffee, legumes—can decrease iron absorption.

It is not known how much nutrient loss occurs in our diets because of anti-nutrients, and the effects vary among individuals based on their metabolism and how the food is cooked and prepared. Many anti-nutrients like phytates, lectins, and glucosinolates can be removed or deactivated by soaking, sprouting, or boiling the food before eating.

Another consideration is that these anti-nutrients affect the absorption of nutrients eaten at the same meal. Therefore to lower this risk, it is recommended to avoid eating large quantities of foods containing anti-nutrients at one meal, and to eat a balanced diet throughout the day with a variety of foods. [3] For example, instead of eating two cups of bran cereal with milk for breakfast, choose one cup of cereal with milk and one cup of fresh berries.

People who are at high risk for diseases related to mineral deficiencies, such as osteoporosis with calcium deficiency or anemia with iron deficiency, may wish to monitor their food choices for anti-nutrient content. Another strategy could be to alter the timing of eating foods with anti-nutrients. Examples are to drink tea between meals instead of with a meal to reduce the chances of iron being poorly absorbed, or taking a calcium supplement a few hours after eating a high-fiber wheat bran cereal that contains phytates.

Studies on vegetarians who eat diets high in plant foods containing anti-nutrients do not generally show deficiencies in iron and zinc, so the body may be adapting to the presence of anti-nutrients by increasing the absorption of these minerals in the gut. [3]

Keep in mind that anti-nutrients may also exert health benefits. Phytates, for example, have been found to lower cholesterol, slow digestion, and prevent sharp rises in blood sugar. [2] Many anti-nutrients have antioxidant and anticancer actions, so avoiding them entirely is not recommended. [3,4]

Keeping an eye on glucosinolates

A few studies have found a small but significant increased risk of disease with higher intakes of glucosinolates, which are obtained mainly through cruciferous vegetables. In two studies following three large prospective cohorts of 42,170 male and 168,404 female health professionals for several years, a higher intake of glucosinolates was associated with a slightly higher risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes in men and women. Individuals with the highest intakes of glucosinolates had a 19% increased risk of type 2 diabetes compared with those with the lowest intakes, even after adjusting for other factors that can affect diabetes, such as BMI, physical activity, and smoking. [5] The strongest associations were observed for Brussels sprouts when comparing the highest (1 or more servings/week) and lowest intakes (never or almost never). In a separate analysis of these same three cohorts looking at intakes of glucosinolates and heart disease, participants who consumed one or more servings a week of Brussels sprouts and cabbage had a higher heart disease risk than those who consumed these vegetables less than once per month. [6] The authors did not recommend avoiding these foods but rather emphasized a need for more studies to replicate and confirm these findings to better understand this possible relation, as several other studies have shown a protective effect on diabetes and heart disease with higher intakes of cruciferous vegetables.

TAOISM | How to Get Drunk on Life

Instead of escaping the experience of life, in all its rawness, with all its emotional highs and lows, its joys and hardships, can’t we just enjoy life as it comes, soberly, as much as we enjoy the state of drunkenness? Or simply put: how can we get drunk on life? Original Taoist tale: https://youtu.be/-o_KD9A2pAQ (great channel) Cuts, voice, footage, script by Einzelgänger. I used creative commons (links below) and some material from Storyblocks and Pixabay (links available upon request).

PURCHASE MY BOOK (affiliate links): Ebook: https://amzn.to/35e23a5 Paperback: https://amzn.to/2RJYfti Merchandise: https://teespring.com/stores/einzelga…

Merchandise design by Punksthetic Art: https://www.youtube.com/user/JRStoneart

Music is licensed and paid for. Creative commons: Samsara: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi… Lao Tzu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laozi#/… Kierkegaard: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi… Marcus Aurelius: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marcus_… #taoism #sobriety #livelifetothefullest

Vitamins, Cofactors and Coenzymes

Nonprotein components of certain enzymes are called cofactors. If the cofactor is organic, then it is called a coenzyme. Coenzymes are relatively small molecules compared to the protein part of the enzyme and many of the coenzymes are derived from vitamins. The coenzymes make up a part of the active site, since without the coenzyme, the enzyme will not function.

  • Flavin Adenine Dinucleotide (FAD)
    The structure shown on the left is for FAD and is similar to NAD+ in that it contains a vitamin-riboflavin, adenine, ribose, and phosphates. As shown it is the diphosphate, but is also used as the monophosphate (FMN).
  • Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD)
    Nicotinamide is from the niacin vitamin. The NAD+ coenzyme is involved with many types of oxidation reactions where alcohols are converted to ketones or aldehydes. It is also involved in the first enzyme complex 1 of the electron transport chain.
  • Vitamin A: β-Carotene
    β-carotene is the molecule that gives carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, and other yellow or orange vegetables their orange color. It is part of a family of chemicals called the carotenoids, which are found in many fruit and vegetables, as well as some animal products such as egg yolks. Carotenoids were first isolated in the early 19th century, and have been synthesized for use as food colorings since the 1950s.
  • Vitamin B₁₂: Cobalamin
    Cobalamin, or Vitamin B12, is the largest and the most complex out of all the types of Vitamins. The discovery of Cobalamin was made as scientists were seeking to find a cure for pernicious anemia, an anemic disease caused by an absence of intrinsic factor in the stomach.

    Go to for Chem.Libretext more information

What are probiotics?

The idea that bacteria are beneficial can be tough to understand. We take antibiotics to kill harmful bacterial infections and use antibacterial soaps and lotions more than ever. The wrong bacteria in the wrong place can cause problems, but the right bacteria in the right place can have benefits. This is where probiotics come in. Probiotics are live microorganisms that may be able to help prevent and treat some illnesses. Promoting a healthy digestive tract and a healthy immune system are their most widely studied benefits at this time. These are also commonly known as friendly, good, or healthy bacteria. Probiotics can be supplied through foods, beverages, and dietary supplements.

The root of the word probiotic comes from the Greek word pro, meaning “promoting,” and biotic, meaning “life.” The discovery of probiotics came about in the early 20th century, when Elie Metchnikoff, known as the “father of probiotics,” had observed that rural dwellers in Bulgaria lived to very old ages despite extreme poverty and harsh climate. He theorized that health could be enhanced and senility delayed by manipulating the intestinal microbiome with host-friendly bacteria found in sour milk. Since then, research has continued to support his findings along with suggesting even more benefits.

Probiotics Side Effects

Probiotics’ side effects, if they occur, tend to be mild and digestive (such as gas or bloating). More serious effects have been seen in

some people. Probiotics might theoretically cause infections that need to be treated with antibiotics, especially in people with underlying health conditions. They could also cause unhealthy metabolic activities, too much stimulation of the immune system, or gene transfer (insertion of genetic material into a cell).

Illustration shows a callout of gut bacteria in the intestines.

Source: iStock

What are probiotics? (Continued)

In October 2013, the International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics (ISAPP) organized a meeting of clinical and scientific experts on probiotics (with specialties in gastroenterology, pediatrics, family medicine, gut microbiota, microbiology of probiotic bacteria, microbial genetics, immunology, and food science) to reexamine the concept of probiotics. They define probiotics as “live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.” They also differentiated between products containing probiotics and those containing live or active cultures and established the following criteria:

  • Live or active cultures criteria:
    • Any food with fermentation microbe(s)
    • Proof of viability at a minimum level reflective of typical levels seen in fermented foods, suggested to be 1 × 109 CFU per serving
    • No specific research or evidence is needed to make this claim.
  • Probiotics criteria for products that do not make a health claim:
    • A member(s) of a safe species, which is supported by sufficient evidence of a general beneficial effect in humans or a safe microbe(s) with a property (for example, a structure, activity, or end product) for which there is sufficient evidence for a general beneficial effect in humans
    • Proof of viability at the appropriate level used in supporting human studies
  • Probiotics criteria for products that make a health claim:
    • Defined probiotic strain(s)
    • Proof of delivery of viable strain(s) at efficacious dose at the end of shelf life
    • Convincing evidence needed for specific strain(s) or strain combination in the specified health indication

Our body normally has what we would call good or helpful bacteria and bad or harmful bacteria. Maintaining the correct balance between these bacteria is necessary for optimal health. Age, genetics, and diet may influence the composition of the bacteria in the body (microbiota). An imbalance is called dysbiosis, and this has possible links to diseases of the intestinal tract, including ulcerative colitisirritable bowel syndromeceliac disease, and Crohn’s disease, as well as more systemic diseases such as obesity and type 1 and type 2 diabetes. How do you know if you need probiotics? This article will help you decide.

Illustration shows the the combination of prebiotics and probiotics forming synbiotics.

Source: MedicineNet

What are prebiotics and synbiotics?

The prebiotic comes before and helps the probiotic, and then the two can combine to have a synergistic effect, known as synbiotics. A prebiotic is actually a nondigestible carbohydrate that acts as food for the probiotics and bacteria in your gut. The definition of the effect of prebiotics is the selective stimulation of growth and/or activity(ies) of one or a limited number of microbial genus(era)/species in the gut microbiota that confer(s) health benefits to the host. The health benefits have been suggested to include acting as a remedy for gastrointestinal (GI) complications such as enteritisconstipation, and irritable bowel disease; prevention and treatment of various cancers; decreasing allergic inflammation; treatment of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and fighting immune deficiency diseases. There has also been research showing that the dietary intake of particular food products with a prebiotic effect has been shown, especially in adolescents, but also tentatively in postmenopausal women, to increase calcium absorption as well as bone calcium accretion and bone mineral density. The benefits for obesity and type 2 diabetes are growing as recent data, both from experimental models and from human studies, have shown particular food products with prebiotics have influences on energy homeostasis, satiety regulation, and body weight gain.

Most of the prebiotics identified are oligosaccharides. They are resistant to the human digestive enzymes that work on all other carbohydrates. This means that they pass through the upper GI system without being digested. They then get fermented in the lower colon and produce short-chain fatty acids that will then nourish the beneficial microbiota that live there. Oligosaccharides can be synthesized or obtained from natural sources. These sources include asparagus, artichoke, bamboo shoots, banana, barley, chicory, leeks, garlic, honey, lentils, milk, mustards, onion, rye, soybean, sugar beet, sugarcane juice, tomato, wheat, and yacón. The health benefits from these oligosaccharides is a topic of ongoing research.

Read the full article at MedicineNet

Rest in Power Dr. Llaila Olela Afrika

 

I have done work with many healers and ALL give thanks and praise to Dr Llaila Afrika. His work will be carried on with each and every student his wisdom has touched. Take the time and watch some of his work and pick up his books to learn more about health and wellness holistically.

African Holistic Health by Afrika, Llaila O.

The Textbook of African Holistic Health by Afrika, Llaila O

Do a search and learn!

16 Fast Growing Vegetables That Will Give You a Harvest Quickly

Would you like to grow a vegetable garden but feel like it just takes way too long? Well, the amazing thing is, it doesn’t have to.

Instead, you can plant some faster-growing veggies and have some great fresh food options to choose from.

So if this sounds great to you, then you’ll want to stay tuned to this post.

16 Fast Growing Vegetables:

Here are the faster vegetable options that you can grow in your garden:

1. Arugula

Arugula

Arugula is a wonderful little green that has a peppery flavor to it. We grew it at our old homestead. It was a delicious addition to our perennial garden.

If you’d like to have a peppery green to toss in your salad, then you should consider growing this flavorful vegetable. All you’ll need to do is plant it, give it about a month to produce mature leaves, and then cut them when you’re ready to enjoy.

Then they’ll continue to grow back each year for your enjoyment.

Arugula can be grown annually in nearly all zones and can be harvested after 30 days.

2. Spinach

Spinach

Spinach was one of the first things I ever tried growing. I did so because of how fast it grew and how simple it was to grow.

Basically, you directly sow the seeds into good quality dirt. Then you’ll need to water and wait. Before you know it, in about 4-6 weeks, you’ll have fresh spinach.

Spinach can be a nice addition to any salad, or you could prepare the spinach fresh like in this recipe.

Spinach can be grown in Zones 3-9, and the leaves can already be harvested 6 weeks after planting.

3. Baby Carrots

baby carrots

Baby carrots taste delicious, are a great snack, are great to cook with, and don’t take as long as full-sized carrots because they don’t have to grow to be as large.

So if you enjoy carrots and want them quickly, then you’ll definitely want to pick the baby carrot variety. Plant them in the ground, or in a container garden for versatility.

Either way, be sure to directly sow the seeds in quality dirt. Then in about 30 days, you’ll have your first harvest.

Baby carrots can be grown in zones 4-10 and can be ready within a month from sowing.

4. Radishes

Radish

Radishes are probably one of the fastest plants you can grow. They are also super simple to grow as well.

If you’d like to try and grow your own vegetables, radishes are excellent fast-growing vegetables to start with. You’ll directly sow these seeds in quality soil.

Radishes can be harvested in about 22-50 days and can be grown in zones 2-10.

5. Cucumbers

Cucumbers

Cucumbers are a very versatile plant to grow. You can make lots of delicious recipes with them. You can start with eating them fresh.

Then they could be a great addition to a salad. When you are “cucumbered out”, you can start making pickles with the fresh cucumbers.

But be advised that cucumbers like to run so you’ll need to either place them on a trellis or give them plenty of space to grow.

Cucumbers can be grown in zones 4-11 and if you want to make pickles the baby cucumbers can be harvested as early as 50 days after planting.

6. Beets

Beets

Beets are one of those vegetables that you either like or you don’t. But even if you don’t like the actual beet itself, you may enjoy the greens that come from the plant.

So either way, it is a great vegetable to grow if you’d like to have a harvest in a hurry. It is good to grow in the spring or when we are heading into fall because they can withstand a little heat, but don’t like the super-hot temperatures we often experience during summer.

Beets can be harvested in around 50 days, however, the greens can be harvested from 30 days. They grow well in zones 2-10.

7. Bush Beans

bush beans

Bush beans are my favorite kind of bean. They grow beautifully in the garden, they are easier to prepare when canning green beans, and they also produce a quicker harvest.

So if you love tender green beans, then consider planting a bush bean variety. All you’ll need to do is directly sow the seeds into quality dirt.

Then over time, with water and sunlight, they will produce a beautiful green bean bush.

Bush beans will be ready in around 40-65 days and grow well in zones 3-10.

8. Bok Choy

Bok Choy

Bok Choy is a fun plant. It looks fun, and it is even fun to say its name.

But it is also a great plant to grow because it can produce a mature harvest in around 30 days. If that isn’t a super-fast plant, I’m not sure what is.

If you are looking for something different to grow that will produce a fast harvest, then you should definitely consider Bok Choy.

Bok Choy grows well in zones 4-7 and individual leaves can be harvested after 21 days, or the whole head 45-60 days after planting.

9. Lettuce

Lettuce

Lettuce is such a versatile plant. There are so many different varieties to choose from that you can have a different flavor and crunch with each one.

But the great thing about lettuce is that it is hearty so it can grow in colder temperatures, and it also doesn’t take very long to produce a mature harvest.

If you want something healthy, green, and fast, then you should definitely consider planting lettuce.

Depending on the Lettuce variety, harvest can be about 30-60 days after planting, ideally in zones 4-9.

10. Summer Squash – Zucchini

zucchini-squash

Summer squash is probably one of my favorite vegetables to enjoy during the warmer months. It tastes delicious, is easy to grow, and produces quickly too.

So if you need to learn how to grow your own squash, here is a great resource to help you along the way.

But a quick overview is basically, you directly sow the seeds in quality soil, water them, and wait for them to grow and produce.

However, you’ll want to be sure to harvest your squash or zucchini when they are young for better flavor.

Zucchini, a Summer Squash variety, grows best in zones 3-10 and can be harvested almost daily from day 35 onwards as they grow so quickly.

Read the full article and get all the veggies at MorningChores 

John C Lilly On Consciousness and Satori

Dr John Cunningham Lilly (January 6, 1915 – September 30, 2001) was an American physician, neuroscientist, psychoanalyst, psychonaut, philosopher, writer and inventor. He was a researcher of the nature of consciousness using mainly isolation tanks, dolphin communication, and psychedelic drugs, sometimes in combination. Lilly was a physician and psychoanalyst. He made contributions in the fields of biophysics, neurophysiology, electronics, computer science, and neuroanatomy. He invented and promoted the use of an isolation tank as a means of sensory deprivation. He also attempted communication between humans and dolphins. His work helped the creation of the United States Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972. Lilly’s eclectic career began as a conventional scientist doing research for universities and government. Gradually, however, he began researching unconventional topics. He published several books and had two Hollywood movies based partly on his work. He also developed theories for flotation. Lilly published 19 books, including The Center of the Cyclone, which describes his own LSD experiences, and Man and Dolphin and The Mind of the Dolphin, which describe his work with dolphins. In the 1980s Lilly directed a project that attempted to teach dolphins a computer-synthesised language. Lilly designed a future “communications laboratory” that would be a floating living room where humans and dolphins could chat as equals and develop a common language. Lilly envisioned a time when all killing of whales and dolphins would cease, “not from a law being passed, but from each human understanding innately that these are ancient, sentient earth residents, with tremendous intelligence and enormous life force. Not someone to kill, but someone to learn from.” In the 1990s Lilly moved to Maui, Hawaii, where he lived most of the remainder of his life. Lilly’s literary rights and scientific discoveries were owned by Human Software, Inc., while his philanthropic endeavors were owned by the Human Dolphin Foundation. The John C. Lilly Research Institute, Inc. continues to research topics of interest to Lilly and carry on his legacy.

Very clean energy source: Thin Air

A microbial organism pulls electricity from water in the air

  •  Hidden in the mud along the banks of Washington D.C.’s Potomac River may be a profound new source of electricity.
  • The microbe makes nanowires that produce a charge from water vapor in ordinary air.
  • Already capable of powering small electronics, it appears that larger-scale power generation is within reach.

The mad rush is on for discovering clean and renewable forms of energy before it’s too late. Turns out, researchers may have unknowingly had it in hand for decades. It’s a sediment organism first found along the muddy shores of the Potomac River and reported in a letter to the journal Nature in 1987. It turns out the microbe produces electricity out of thin air, one resource we’re unlikely to run out of. University of Massachusetts Amherst scientists have just revealed their development of a device for harvesting this electricity in Nature.

The amazing microbe

Image source: Anna Klimes and Ernie Carbone, UMass Amherst/Wikipedia

The rod-shaped microbe, Geobacter sulfurreducens is, as its name implies, a member of the Geobacter genus, a group referred to as “electrigens” for their known ability to generate an electrical charge. It was UMass Amherst microbiologist Derek Lovley who found and wrote about the microbe in the late 80s.

It was also Lovlley’s lab that discovered the microbe has a talent for producing electrically conductive protein nanowires, and his lab recently developed a new Geobacter strain that could produce them more rapidly and inexpensively. “We turned E. coli into a protein nanowire factory,” Lovley says. What this means, he says, is that “With this new scalable process, protein nanowire supply will no longer be a bottleneck to developing these applications.”

Enter electrical engineer Jun Yao, also of UMass Amherst. His specialty had been engineering electronic devices using silicon nanowires. The two decided to work together to see if they could turn Geobacter’s protein nanowires into something useful.

Read the full article at BigThink

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How Cyanobacteria Took Over The World

 

JRE : Michael Osterholm x Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research

Michael Osterholm is an internationally recognized expert in infectious disease epidemiology. He is Regents Professor, McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair in Public Health, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, a professor in the Technological Leadership Institute, College of Science and Engineering, and an adjunct professor in the Medical School, all at the University of Minnesota. Look for his book “Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Deadly Germs” for more info. https://amzn.to/2IAzeLe