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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

The last couple of months of the year are filled with celebrations and it will help world Peace if we try to understand one another better, so here you can learn more about others, what they celebrate and why. I hope that it will encourage you to learn more and integrate with the people of our planet. The diabetes articles will continue in the new year. Make good food choices for your celebrations!

This is a shared month of holy times:

___   Devali, the Hindus Festival of Light and celebration of the Hindu New Year. was celebrated the first week of November in 2010. Diwali is a five day festival which also honors the victory of good over evil, and brightness over darkness. Also, the festival marks the start of winter.

On the third day of the festival, lots of small clay lamps (diyas) and candles are lit and placed in homes giving Diwali hence its name of “Festival of Lights”.

People also clean and decorate their homes with Rangoli – Hindu folk art.  They give each other gifts during the festival, and other rituals vary according to region of India.  However, in most areas, people send special blessings to Laxshmi, the Goddess of wealth and prosperity, and to Ganesha, the remover of obstacles.

The Goddess Laxshmi will visit every home during the Diwali period, bringing prosperity and good fortune. It’s said she visits the cleanest places first, therefore people make sure their homes are spotless, before lighting lamps to invite her in.

___   On December 1 -9 in 2010, the Jews started to celebrate Hanukkah, the Hebrew Festival of Light, a universal holy time for celebration of the triumph for the battle of religious freedom. More about the 8 day celebration can be read at in the Titles Archive above.

The 2,200 year old festival is based on a mixture of historical actions and a religious miracle, during the time when the Jews fought the first battles for religious freedom and tolerance, which have managed to endure, for all of us. It is also known as the Festival of Light and candles are lit on the menorah (hannukiah) for all 8 days.

___   The Muslims started to celebrate on December 7, with Al-Hijira —  Islamic New Year.  This holy day marks the migration of the Prophet Mohammad and his followers from Mecca to Medina, and it is the first day of the month of Muharram. The Journey, the Hijra (or Hegira),  happened in 622 CE, and it was in Medina that Mohammad set up the first Islamic state.

Logically, as the new year, the Muslim calendar counts dates from the Hijra, which is why Muslim dates have the suffix A.H. (After Hijra). It is a low-key event, celebrated less than the two major, recent festivals of Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha.

Muslims regard this as a good time for ‘New Year Resolutions’, reflecting that the Hajira marks the start of Islam as a community in which spiritual and earthly life were completely integrated. A people could be bound together by faith, rather than just by tribal bonds, and as a consequence, tribal and family loyalties became less significant compared to the bonds of Islam.

Because of the lunar calendar, Ramadan sometimes falls in December (the actual date for the start of Ramadan depends upon the sighting of the crescent moon).

This is the holiest period in the Islamic year, for Ramadan honors the lunar month in which the Qura’n was revealed by God to humanity. So Muslims observe the Fast of Ramadan, which lasts for the entire month. Fasting during the daylight hours and eating small meals in the evening, allows for visits with friends and family and using the time for worship and contemplation

___   On December 8 (or on the Sunday immediately preceding), the Buddhists celebrate Bodhi Day (also called Rohatsu). This recalls the day in 596 BCE, in India, when Prince Siddartha, the Buddha, achieved enlightenment.

The Prince had left his family and courtly possessions behind, at the age of 29, and went to seek the meaning of life — particularly the reasons for its hardships.

For many years, he studied and learned from many spiritual teachers without success. Finally, he sat under a bo tree and made a vow, saying that he would stay there until he found the answers he was seeking.

The morning of the 8th day dawned, and he realized that everyone suffers due to ignorance — but ignorance can be overcome through the Eightfold Path which he advocated.

So, celebrate the birthing day of Buddhism. The Buddha achieved enlightenment, and escaped the endless Karmic cycle of birth, death, rebirth through reincarnation — themes that are observed in other religions in December, as you will see below.

___   December 21 — The Solstice — is the first, official day of winter because it is The Winter Solstice (Northern Hemisphere, longest night) and Summer Solstice (Southern Hemisphere, longest day).

This is a very important time for Druids, Wiccans and other nature-based religions, like Shinto, as well as many major religions also reflecting this longer tradition, too —  emphasizing this same time-frame for celebrations of “Light” and the “Light of the World” in the longest time of darkness.

All of this is evidence of an underlying human commonality below what seems to be a diversity of belief.

This year, there was an important lunar eclipse on the Solstice, the first time this has happened since 1638. So it is a very eventful time.

In Celtic culture, which spanned from India to Ireland, Druids and Druidesses formed the professional class in ancient Celtic society. They functioned as: priests, teachers, ambassadors, astronomers, genealogists, philosophers, musicians, theologians, scientists, poets and even judges.

Druids led all their people’s public rituals, which were normally held within fenced groves of sacred trees or at a powerful natural energy source, like the ring of stones at Stonehenge or Avesbury or the Neolithic cave at New Grange in Ireland.

For Druids, the Solstice is the time of the death of the old sun and the birth of the dark-half of the year. Calling it “Alban Arthuan, it is the end of month of the Elder Tree and the start of the month of the Birch tree.

The 3 days before Yule is magical time, when the Serpent Days or transformation occur. In their cosmological view, the Elder and Birch trees stand as guardians at the entrance to Annwn (the Celtic underworld — where all life was formed).  Now, it is time for the Sun God journey’s through the underworld, to learn the secrets of death and of life, and bring out those souls to be reincarnated.

In prehistoric times, and also in times of modern turmoil, winter was a very difficult time for peoples.  The growing season was over;  everyone had to live off of stored food and whatever animals they could catch. See how hard this is to do just by watching “Survivor”!

In earlier times, the people would become troubled as the life-giving sun sank lower in the sky each day.  We can understand their fear that it would eventually disappear and leave them in permanent darkness and extreme cold.

Only after the Winter Solstice, could they have a reason to celebrate. They saw the sun rising and strengthening once more. They were encouraged that the return of the warm season was inevitable.

Even the equitorial based Inca Empire realized the special time, as it moved southward. The ancient Incas celebrated a festival of Inti Raymi at the time of the Winter Solstice. Since the Inca Empire was mainly south of the equator, the festival was held in June, their winter, and it celebrates “the Festival of the Sun;  the god of the Sun, Wiracocha, is honored.  The ceremonies were banned by the Roman Catholic conquistadores in 1572, and the Conquistadors forced conversions of the Inca people to Christianity. But, about 65 years ago, a local group of Quecia Indians in Cusco, Peru revived the festival and now it is celebrated in an ancient amphitheater a few miles away.

In North America, the Pueblo tribe observe both the Summer and Winter Solstices. Specific details of the rituals differ from pueblo to pueblo, but the rites are built around the sun, the coming new year and the rebirth of vegetation in the spring. Winter Solstice rites involve: prayerstick making, retreats, purification and prayers for plenty.

The Hopi tribe dedicates itself to give aid and direction to the sun, which is ready to ‘return’ to give strength to budding life. Their ceremony is called Soyal and it lasts for 20 days. Activities include: prayerstick making, purification rituals and a celebratory rabbit hunt, feast and blessing.

In Iran, Shabe-Yalda (Shab-e Yaldaa) is celebrated by followers of many religions. It originated in Zoroastrianism, the state religion which preceded Islam (and still practiced by the Parsi of India). The holy day’s name refers to the birthday or rebirth of the sun, and Iranians gather at home, all night,  around a korsee (a low square table). There, they tell stories, read poems, eat watermelons, pomegranates and a special dried fruit/nut mix. Bonfires are lit outside which help to illuminate the darkened world.

So, it’s logical that all around the world, the concept of birth and or death/rebirth became associated with the Winter Solstice. Ancient powerhouse civilizations: India, Egypt, Iran (Persia), Brazil, Peru, Greece and Rome, all had these festivals at this time.

And the sophisticated civilizations developed astronomy, to determine accurate time for The Solstice.  So we have Egyptian, Celtic, Irish, American, Mayan, Incan and Brazilian tribal architecture to determine when the Solstice would happen.

There are countless stone structures created by early peoples in the past to detect the Solstices and Equinoxes — e.g. Calendar One, from an unknown American tribe.  This is in a natural amphitheater of about 20 acres in Vermont. From a stone enclosure in the center of the bowl, you see a number of vertical rock structures and natural features on the horizon (which formed the edge of the bowl). At the Solstices and Equinoxes, the sun rises and sets at either a notch or a peak in the ridge, which makes it a  calendar.

But most Prehistoric Aboriginal peoples had no instruments for detecting The Solstice. Astronomically astute, they noticed a slight elevation of the sun’s path within a few days after The Solstice — perhaps by December 25th and this is why celebrations were often timed around the 25th — which is significant to the “chosen” day for Xmas.

___   For Christians, December 25 is an officially agreed-upon time for the Christmas — set aside to celebrate the birth of the Jewish rabbi, Jesus (Yeshua) of Nazareth, known to Christians as “the light of the world”. There is sufficient evidence in the Gospels to indicate Yeshua was actually born in the autumn, but this seems to have been unknown to early Christians.

By the third century CE, many religions and spiritual mysteries were being followed within the “known-world’s” Roman Empire. Most, celebrated the birth of their god-man near the time of The Solstice; it was a common, ancient religious theme.

The Roman Emperor Aurelian (270 to 275 CE) blended a number of The Solstice celebrations of the nativity of such god-men/saviors as: Apollo, Attis, Baal, Dionysus, Helios, Hercules, Horus, Mithra, Osiris, Perseus and Theseus into a single festival. It was called the “Birthday of the Unconquered Sun” and was held on December 25.

At the time, Persian Mithraism and Christianity were fierce competitors for the hearts, minds, souls of the Empire’s peoples. Aurelian declared Mithraism to be the official religion of the Roman Empire in 274 CE. But, Christianity finally won, by becoming the new official religion in the 4th century CE, from a different Emperor’s edict, just before his death, too.

So, with new stature, Christianity at the beginning of the 4th century CE, found intense interest in actually choosing a day to celebrate Yeshua’s birthday.

The western church leaders of the time selected December 25th because this was already the date recognized throughout the Roman Empire as the birthday of various gods; it was a way to be able to celebrate unfettered. That is why many symbols and practices associated with Christmas are really of non-Christian origin: holly, ivy, mistletoe, yule log, the giving of gifts, decorated evergreen tree, magical reindeer and more.

With no central Christian authority at the time, it took centuries before the tradition of December 25th was universally accepted:

___   Eastern Christian churches began to celebrate Christmas on December 25th after 375 CE.

___   The church in Ireland only in the 5th century CE and churches in Jerusalem started in the 7th century CE.

___   Austria, England and Switzerland started celebrating it then the 8th century CE and in Slavic lands in the 9th and 10th centuries CE.

Even now, not all Christians acknowledge December 25 or celebrate it e.g. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not. And, the English Parliament even abolished Christmas in 1647.

___   Kwanzaa – honors universal African-American heritage and culture. It is observed from December 26 – January 1 each year, and features activities such as:  the lighting of a kinara, libations and a feast, and gift giving. It was created by Maulana Karenga and was first celebrated on December 26, 1966.

The entry in Wikipedia says the goal was to “give Blacks an alternative to the existing holiday and give Blacks an opportunity to celebrate themselves and their history”. The name Kwanzaa is a Swahili phrase matunda ya kwanza, meaning first fruits of the harvest.

Kwanzaa celebrates 7 principles of Nguzo Saba, which Karenga said “is a communitarian African philosophy”. These consist of “the best of African thought and practice in constant exchange with the world.”

The 7 principles comprise Kawaida, Swahili for “tradition and reason”, and each of the 7 days of Kwanzaa is dedicated to one individual principle:

* Umoja (Unity):  Strive for and maintain unity in: family, community, nation and race.

* Kujichagulia (Self-Determination):  define oneself, name ourselves, create and speak for ourselves.

* Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility):  Build and maintain community. Make our brothers’ and sisters’ problems our problems and to solve them together.

* Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics):  Build and maintain our own businesses and shops, and to profit from them together.

* Nia (Purpose): Make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community. Restore our people to their traditional greatness.

* Kuumba (Creativity): Always do as much as we can, in any way we can, to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.

* Imani (Faith): Believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers and our Journey.

And, I hope this long article will foster good will and more awareness.

My hope: May all of us be Blessed with Peace and Health and Understanding and Compassion as we follow and work in the light of the Sun, each new day. Make it count!

Read more in the Titles Archive. The tab is on the upper navigation bar.

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(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please respect my copyright. You may quote up to 2 short paragraphs, but to use all or more of my article, then please write for permission at the About Me page, above. Thanks!

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

This is the first day of Hanukkah. We’ll light the 2nd. candle tonight, so the Holiday Season is in full swing. Where does that leave diabetics?  The modern process of self-examination daily, through blood monitoring etc., leaves us with the potential to be too self-absorbed, and not involved enough in the real world outside ourselves. I think that we need to find a Middle Path, being safe but not obsessive, and work with a physician who is like-minded.

The diagnosis of  “being diabetic” causes a stress all its own. We have to learn to be comfortable in our own skin; be disciplined in ways that may be counter to much of current medical advice (i.e. be willing to use a proper, non-American Diabetes Association, diet based on whole, fresh food and few or no grains); think for ourselves, and think beyond ourselves to make a real contribution in the world to others (which in turn raises our self-confidence, self-esteem and view of ours as a worthy life — rather than any chance to be in a victim-mode).

Every year, for the past several years, I have given people information about how to help others at this time when most people are just thinking far too much about “gifts” to give and get, within their circle of family and friends. This year, more than any other since the Great Depression, we need to use our resources well, and not just be a mass-shopping herd.

Dr. Robert Reich just wrote a column which helps to expose the fallacy thinking which is prolonging this global financial crisis, which all of us are caught in, and any of us can become a casualty or even-more-of-a-casualty than we already are.  Diabetics have to become involved. Diabetes is a life-style disease and management and cure require a good, financially-adequate life!

Even if I think mainstream medicine is not treating diabetes appropriately, I laud courageous holistic MDs who are taking the best of alternative medicine and western medicine to find the best Middle Path (even one to cure).  I want to preserve our access to healthcare, and preserve our ability to pay for medications and supplements which we actually need. None of this is a given, any more, as Mr. Obama has said ‘everything is on the table’, even Social Security and Medicare.

So, please, again, get involved and politically active. Also, please help those of us who are struggling more than you are now. There are many ways to do that — from lending or giving money to help save someone’s home — all the way to making sure parents can see Joy on their children’s faces.

Here are a few ideas that are current and some from the past. Please use them to Help. Thanks.

Teddies for Tragedies:
Teddies For Tragedies – History
Teddies For Tragedies – Patterns
Teddies For Tragedies – Knitting

Teddies For Tragedies
c/o Barb Drozdowich
PO Box 2128, Sumas, WA, 98295, USA

GIFT OF GIVING:
Gift of Giving NYT
Haiti Help – Haiti Bracelet
at Patricia Arquette’s Haitian NGO or at Jewelry for Haitian Relief wear it proudly!

Good Works for the New Year

Charity and Last Minute Gift Giving

Learn more about Hanukkah here, and why it is important for ALL people. Hanukkah and Religious Liberty

Please share this article with your favorite web 2.0 site. Click the icons below, too, please. Also, subscribe to my blog on the upper right sidebar.

Also, learn more with nearly 4 years of articles in the Titles Archive on the upper navigation bar.

I sincerely wish all of you a Happy, Peaceful, Secure Holiday Season and I fervently hope all will be much better when I write, again, this time next year.

Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:
CommonDreams.org

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please respect my copyright. You may quote 2 short paragraphs, but to use more or the whole article, please write for permission to the About Me page on the upper navigation bar. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

I get angry when I see people’s choices in the supermarket. Why should I be SO concerned? Well, if you saw people spending their precious food dollar on worthless food, thinking they were nourishing themselves and their children, when they are NOT, then wouldn’t you be upset? Wouldn’t you want to unveil the lies that con people into buying products because of convenience, but at the total detriment of their and their childrens’ Health? I bet you’d want to speak out! So, do Dr. Marchione, MD and myself. Here goes!

Dr. Marchione reports that food manufacturers’ claims and the truth aren’t always the same. As The Food Doctor, he has exposed foods such as:

___   so-called “fresh” deli turkey or chicken or whole turkeys excessively high in sodium – which has been used as a preservative, in the basting solution

___   most commercial granola bars are high in trans fat and calories

___   dairy foods are often rampant with fillers – this is especially true of many commercial yoghurts and processed cheeses

He and I expose these pretenders and he names the brands so you can avoid them. You can learn more at his site: Dr. Marchione’s homepage.

At the crux of the current, wide-spread problems is the issue of hidden toxic food ingredients. This is well illustrated by the excellent case-study by Hannaford Brothers, a New England grocery chain.

Hannaford Brothers devised a star-rating system for identifying the nutritional value of all food and beverages which were in its stores. Based on the ingredients used and the nutrition, each food would get a rating from zero to three stars. What the company found was amazing …

Of 27,000 products reviewed, a whopping 77% received a “Zero” Health Rating. NO stars at all. None!

That means that nearly 8 out of 10 products on the store shelves were judged to be unhealthy due to on e or more:

___   low nutritional content

___   high levels of sugar

___   trans fats or other unhealthy ingredients

That’s why it takes vigilance to overcome the constant barrage of noise from the food manufacturers, and many times, it’s shamelessly still true that the cardboard package has more nutrition than the “food” inside.

(These are probably the same selections of common processed foods as in any mainstream supermarket, which is not a health store.)

Em: I suggest all of the following.

As money is tight, I keep saying, “grow your own“. Even in winter, you can grow highly nutritious sprouts in very small space inside, and even have a more complex indoor garden. Look in the archive on the upper navigation bar to find those articles (many are on page 3).

I also still say, “buy organic“, as the food is at least twice as nutritious for 1 1/2 times the price, so it’s a bargain!

Make more of your own food. If you arrive home tired every night, then use your time to learn quick prep meal techniques OR ones that don’t need tending:

___ stir-fry (in water, broth or extra-virgin olive oil) and grilling on your stove — you must tend those

___    OR less tending for these: steaming, steaming en papillote (little parchment packages),  poaching and crockpot (used all day or all night)

___   never microwave. Science has consistently shown that this alters the food on a molecular level! Dairy is especially effected. Talk about Frankenfood!

Plan meals ahead in a way that makes things simpler. Yes, it means time in the kitchen. Get a TV and put it in there and move around doing these chores instead of sitting on the couch, if that has been your reason to do nothing.

Promise yourself to make a healthy shopping list every week and only buy from that, unless there are exceptional seasonal buys on fresh, healthy food once you get to the store!

Once home prep the food into portion sizes you need, ready to be made later.

Have a plan of at least 14 different meals to make in double or triple batches, over a month. Use the first 2 weekends each month to get yourself started. Cook once or twice a month and then freeze the food for reheating on nights you don’t use a quick-from-scratch technique and recipe.

Make lots of soups along with the cooking, anytime, quick-cook and slow-cook.

And, don’t say this bulk-cooking can’t be done.

My daughter did this for 6 years, while working full-time at an executive, high-tech job, with 2 kids at home (beginning at about age 6 and age 8) and a non-cook parent. Long before the 6 years were over, the non-cook parent could do all this, with the kids.

Everyone was empowered. My daughter wasn’t being treated as a slave; there was quality family-time and a sense of team-work; the other 3 people learned valuable life-skills; they were “invested” in eating the Healthy food they chose to make and on and on.

Just do it! No excuses.

Use snippets of time during the week ahead to make the food processor work at cutting, slicing and dicing so you are ready for your twice-a-month cook day. Do this a max of 2 – 3 days before. Save the onions and garlic until cooking day; otherwise, valuable nutrients dissipate in them.

I do not recommend this pre-prep for shredding cheese. That’s an arduous, frustrating job. Just buy it shredded, if you use it.

Just like Professor Michael Pollan at University of California, Berkeley, I am making these food rules as guidelines for Health:

___   always choose seasonal foods

___   always eat fresh, raw vegetables and a few steamed ones. Use at least 5 different veggies per day between raw and steamed. More is even better. The Okinawan Japanese average 16 per day, and they are the healthiest people on the planet when eating traditionally.

___   have 1 -2 seasonal whole fruits a day, not juice. One must be a Vitamin C source. Kiwis are excellent for diabetics.

___   cut down your use of all grains, but when you use grains, make sure they are whole grains and the only bread is sourdough whole grain as that gets rid of a lot of the problems grains cause people

___   use wild rice. Yes it’s “expensive”, but it is very beneficial for diabetics and it is NOT a grain. It is a grass, botanically, and in a family all its own

___   use plenty of fresh garlic, fresh onion, cinnamon and turmeric (it’s in curry powder, too) — these are excellent for diabetics

___   use quinoa as a grain substitute. It is a high-protein fruit! Yes, fruit, again, botanically, but you don’t need to “count” it as a fruit. Count it as a protein

All right, we’re done for today. Look online for once a month cooking sites and cookbooks. You’ll just use them for ideas, because the writers are not necessarily making healthy recipes.

Adapt your own healthy recipes to this technique by just doubling your normal recipe and not including any potatoes into it (yet); they don’t freeze well. Try to add any cheese later, too, whenever possible for the same reason.

Then package your prepared food into week-night portions, date and label. Organize the freezer to use the oldest food first.  These dishes usually last for about 2 – 3 months of storage in a zero-degree freezer, less time in a refrigerator-freezer combo.

Best to all — Em

Please use the icon links to your favorite Web 2.0 sites, below, to help spread my article!

Use the Titles Archive tab on the upper navigation bar to learn lots more!

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please respect my copyright. You may quote 2 short paragraphs, but for more use, please write for permission, to the About Me page, above. Thanks.

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

I always wish I could start to post “serious” discussions first thing in the morning, when my mind is clearest and when I have a chance to remember ideas and thoughts which settled-in overnight … but something always ‘needs attention right away’ and tends to obliterate or obscure these more intangible thoughts or make them permeable.

So, finally, I’ve tried to keep my promise of the last few weeks, to write about gaining perspective and edging towards a more-Balanced Life, which, in turn, usually leads to better physical and mental Health. I’m finding it a tall-order right now. The words are not flowing like they did in the wee hours, when I was ruminating!

Yesterday, the Universe answered with help, and I gave up 2 hours last night to watch the PBS special “The Buddha”. It was a fascinating program and it brought me back to my understanding that Siddartha’s Journey is the one we must all make to find Peace, the Balance necessary to live a good Life and Completion.

Buddhism is not a religion in the way that “religion” is thought of in the West, and I think it can be combined with other thought-patterns (religions) or “divine” pronouncements (religions).

Buddhism is a way to take the Middle Path — not bow to excess — and it supplies ways to temperately approach Life’s Journey, with a Dharma (set of instructions), to help you guide your Search. And, it is an individual Search. It is work; it is dedication. It is thinking and doing.

As a Jew, I can agree with that. That’s why many Jews also embrace Buddhism. All sincere, peaceful, truthful paths lead to the Divine. I believe that. Even if you do not, I think being open to other people’s ideas is essential and their way can be helpful to you, if you choose.

The 613 commandments in the Old Testament which orthodox Jews follow and actively use daily, is another road-map, but can be taken on many levels. Those 613 acts can be a personal, pro-active Journey, too, not just a rote one.

Whatever “Way” you choose, it is essential to find Balance.

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD was showing some more scientifically based approaches recently for a person who was not clinically-depressed, but who was deeply dis-satisfied and could therefore not find Happiness. That’s what the Buddha “understood” was the source of imbalance — “dis-satisfaction”.

If you are not Happy, there’s a reason “why” and you must ferret it out and try to remedy it — whether it be physical or psychological or spiritual. You just can’t go through Life without tending your whole Garden, all that IS YOU!

Most of us are doing a poor job of this; we are putting the most-important last! We are not put on this Earth to automatically just ‘earn money’, ‘make families’, ‘engender world Peace’.

We have an individual Gift of Life which has a Purpose for the betterment of All of us. We have to find it, or Life will hammer on us until we pay attention to the Greater Reason we are alive. Maybe it is “to make money” but maybe it is to create music and live differently because of that choice.

One of the greatest Gifts the Buddha brought into the minds of ordinary people, who do not spend years as a wanderer and questioner, is that in order to make the most of our Life, we must be “present” in each moment. We need to attend to the present, not the past and not the future. Just be “in the Now”. You can make better choices and handle anything if you are just dealing with “Now”.

Interestingly, the word count just went by 613 as I finished the last paragraph. A sign? OK, I’ll think so. I gave you a road-map.

___ Science? Sure, you can use it for  information. I try to help you here.

___ Religion? Maybe yours will help you, but I think only if YOU! are required to actively be the one on the Journey and have to take responsibility in this Life.

___ Personal Choice? Maybe, if you do take time aside each day to assess where you are and make a road-map day-by-day (with only a vague pass at what “Future” means, otherwise you become too “attached” to that Plan and only that Plan).

Whichever the road-map base you choose, get one started! Take thoughtful, aware Action on your Life moment-by-moment. You can handle that. If you fall down, then get up and start again in the next moment. Put together many moments and that means Success.

Best to all — Em

REFERENCE:
The Buddha – a video at PBS.org

DrOzShow.com

DrOzShow.com 28 Days to a Happier YOU!

Learn more in my Title Archive. See the Tab on the upper navigation bar.

Please share this link and others from my blog, so that I can help more people, far and wide. Thanks!

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

If you want to quote more than 2 short paragraphs from my article, please write to the About Me page for permission. Thanks.

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DDD Blog – 3rd Anniversary Update

“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Two days ago, this blog turned 3 years old. I am grateful for my readers, and it is humbling to know that nearly 200,000 have read my information and perspective about helping diabetics live better lives and how to cure diabetes with alternative methods and especially alkaline foods.

This past year, I have been trying to get a business started, and that has eaten into my time here at DDD, seriously, but I am still committed to trying hard to continue the flow of my unique diabetic information for you, as much as I can.

I am hoping to publish some materials of my own this year and will alert to when and where to get them; I’m trying to learn being a webmistress. I’ve had to learn how best to accomplish publishing, and it’s taken awhile.

I am persisting because Diabetes is a growing problem, in America and globally, and First Lady Michelle Obama has realized the consequences of childhood obesity now. It leads to pre-diabetes and full-blown diabetes with huge numbers of new diabetics (immediately and later); this problem has the capacity to cripple our society.

I believe that whether it’s for a healthy life beginning in youth or for quality longevity as seniors, the daily choices we make are the foundation of our Health. And, all of us need to learn stress reduction techniques, as stress initiates the hormonal cascade which encourages diabetes.

As the world-wide economy fails, people make the mistake of cutting the quality and quantity of their food in order to preserve other items in their budget. This is a recipe for disaster!

I know. Even with 5 university degrees between us, my husband and I have had a tough time since we closed his practice and all our lifetime of investments went “south”. We’ve struggled seriously for about 8 years now.

After listening to many well-regarded experts, on responsible media, I believe that people just joining us in this economic conflagration are not going to see the American economy turn-around any time soon. I truly fear the loss of the middle-class everywhere; it may be the biggest casualty in history.

In teaching my strategy to economically and medically survive in the trenches, I have had to make serious budget choices. (which I am not used to doing — in childhood or in adulthood).

As a diabetic, not on medication, with no health insurance, I have to be really careful and knowledgeable!

Now, after the utilities and gasoline are bought and the roof over our head is paid for, food comes next. Period. And, it’s great, healthy food, as organic as possible. That may mean no new clothes, no gifts (our larger family understands), no concerts or playthings and little travel. We’ve returned to what is usually known as Voluntary Simplicity … but in our case, it’s mandatory.

We are learning to live like most social strata in the world live, without the excess and folly, and by being a close-knit family, we are able to do it. Rather than viewing our new life as a fall-from-grace, it’s been uplifting to get-off the consumer bandwagon and find there’s actually a better life hiding there.

But, it’s a challenge, no hiding that fact. Yet, even so, I’m not patronizing the Whole Foods wannabe called Walmart, for our food and never will.

I prefer to continue to support those businesses which still exemplify the heart of the natural-foods and organic foods movements. I have built them with my dollars for 40 years of family food purchases. Walmart really badgers it’s vendors and is going into local foods and organics only to try to kill these other longtime businesses. I won’t play their game, ever.

To help ourselves, we recently joined the closest food co-op; it had been in a really far neighborhood, but halved the distance when opening a second store. Keeping a low carbon footprint has always been important to my family, so trips to the co-op only happen when we have to be in that part of town, and we buy there accordingly.

Every trip away from home must accomplish at least 3 – 4 important goals and stops, minimum. We wait to travel anywhere until there’s enough reason to go. When we had jobs, public transportation was always first choice for commuting.

The rest of our grocery stores are closer and have been in the organics business a long time. We still support the first store chain (in its newer incarnation) from which we’ve bought our organic food in Portland for the past 30 years.

It’s harder now, being on unemployment stipends. These stores are not cheap at all. The few items I can pare off, which are more commercial, I get my husband to get at the employee-owned grocery chain in town, as they are able to discount more heavily.

I / We make more things from scratch, and I’m lucky that my husband is a great cook, and follows recipes well. But, he’s juggling that while continuing a job search (3 years without income — he’s an “over-qualified”, top tier executive) and he’s mulling over whether and how we can start a business.

It’s a shame for all of his legal and financial know-how to be going to waste OR for him not to continue to follow his passion, wood-working, which he’s been excellent at for 4 decades, too, in a little business of his own.

Those of you who return home tired from your job each night (and who are doubtlessly being overworked, as most modern companies are doing to their employees), need my information about how to organize making healthy food on a budget (of time and money) just as much as we have needed to know it. Albeit for some different reasons, as well as similar ones, we are all in the same boat.

So, I will continue DDD with pertinent scientific information, important alternative medicine strategies and ongoing access to recipes and living with diabetes on a budget information (with more to come in my published for profit material).

I sincerely appreciate you coming to visit, and I encourage you to read regularly. Put this blog into your Google Reader, so you won’t miss a single episode.

Do read the article archive, which you can access at the Titles Archive tab on the top navigation bar.

Also, please help us to get more exposure for my blog by book-marking it and sharing it’s article URLs on your Web 2.0 social sites and pages.

I am thinking about starting a page on Facebook, myself. You can see other choices on the sidebar here, too.

You can always contact me at About Me on the upper bar. Those messages are private; there is no way to publish them. I love to have you make comments, and I read all of them, even though I only publish about 25% of them. The best comments also help others learn, in a non-self-serving way.

I sincerely hope those of you in America will agitate on your behalf about health-care. It’s shameful, and a public option needs to be part of the mix.

Our well-covered politicians are out of touch and Congress needs a TOTAL (and I mean total) scouring-out. We only need people in Congress who will make Campaign Reform the first job, and undoing the Supreme Court’s recent ruling letting corporations have first amendment rights.

These are serious issues that, unless they are actually and quickly accomplished, mean that we are basically on-our-own and that government doesn’t work anymore except for the rich and powerful.

Don’t just sit back. Make sure this generation of children grow up healthy. Get junk food and junk ideas out of your life. Act on behalf of ourselves and future generations to make sure that, as our Founding Fathers intended, the power is in the hands of We The People, not corporations and not any of our out-of-touch, self-serving “representatives”.

Best to all — Em

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

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“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Here’s a basket of info and techniques to jump-start your resolve and increase your chance for success. It takes at least 21 days to get a new habit started well, so if you begin today, you’ll have a successful first month of 2010 and it will help to shape a successful year.

Here’s a first pass at suggestions to start now:

___ Use only fresh, seasonal food. It is less expensive and it helps your body by being in tune with your natural instincts. Your body knows what it needs to endure in each season; the fact that you can get out-of-season “food” only confuses it, and that leads to complications and possible dis-ease.

How do you know what is in season? Go to your market and look for the least expensive fresh foods! But, if you are at home planning menus or looking at recipes, you can use Seasonal Food Availability Charts by month, by hemisphere.

This will help you make a healthy, budget shopping list, which will give you more healthy food for your money.

___ Cooking your food at home need not be difficult or time consuming. It is a fundamental skill that you literally cannot live without. I was shocked to see how even some 50 and 60 year olds had never learned to cook, when I watched the first episode of Food Network’s “Worst Cooks in America” last week.

Yes, I was totally shocked by the ineptitude of all these people and the lack of respect for themselves and their well-being that this ignorance engendered!

And, when several of the people were shown again at the end of the episode, I was also impressed at how their knowledge base expanded exponentially in just one lesson, along with their confidence!

Every city has places where there are food demonstrations, and if you can afford it, go get real cooking lessons, but if you cannot, then buy a good, basic cook book and start at page 1. If you learn technique and understand the principles, you can cook anything in a healthy way.

Make sure you get a recipe book which has the nutritional content along with each recipe or use the recipes at a site which does, too.

I will be putting my own easy-to-make-food information out soon; I’ll let you know when you can buy it online on a print-on-request site for a reasonable fee.

___ Have at least 30 favorite, healthy recipes which you feel comfortable making. Use these staples to make either 2 meals per day for a fortnight OR use them to take one meal’s slot for a month. Variety will help you stick to any regimen. If you just learn 1 or 2 recipes a week, you will change your life quickly for the better.

‘Make sure you stay with a portion size which will give women about 1600 calories a day and men about 2,000 calories a day. Anything less than that, as typical diets are, will NOT give you enough to get proper nutrition’, so says the editor of Prevention Magazine, and I agree, even if you are taking supplements. Food provides factors we don’t even know about, let alone can reproduce in a lab. Supplements are just that; they are not the solution, and most of us need them as a back-up support system to help, as we are stressed all the time.

Obesity and morbid obesity are epidemic among all age groups in America, Britain and Australia, for sure. Some other countries are not far behind. As people become impoverished in this financial tsunami, if you are not putting Healthy Food First (TM), then expect that you will find your budget stretched to the max with medical bills or pills or worse. Eating too few calories makes your body think it is going to be starving and starts a bad biochemical cascade; and eating poor food tells your body that you ARE starving, and it keeps eating. Both result in obesity. But, when you eat healthy, whole, fresh food and treat it lightly and carefully in cooking, your body IS nourished and relearns to be satisfied with just an amazingly reasonable amount of food.

___ If you want to make double-recipes and freeze half, then you have you’ll half a month of main meals already made! If you get into the rhythm of this, then you can make a huge change in your budget, health and time available for other things, daily.

One relative held a full-time, executive job, with 2 children (starting when about 8-9 and 11-12 years old) and a husband she was teaching to cook, gradually over a year, starting by being there as she did this once-a-week or once-a-month cooking and freezing, depending on her schedule. By the end of the year, he could do the whole regimen, and will never be stuck eating commercial ready-made “food” and he can be a real partner. Each child had prep and clean-up chores and it became a great use of quality family time. Now the kids know how to cook, too, and know it’s easy to make real food, so don’t get sucked in to junk food.

This requires an upfront commitment, but the rewards are great and are life-long.

___ Eat about every 4 – 5 hours, and preferably make your meals about the same size and importance, along with a snack about 8 – 9 pm. Having each eating session be about 400 calories of balanced, high mineral, high vitamin, healthy fat and moderate proteins what we want to aim for or make 3 meals and a smaller snack but have the meals fairly equal.

Some people need a slightly bigger meal at breakfast, others at dinner. If you know by instinct, then honor that, but if it is a dinner, make sure you eat early, and are finished by 6:30 pm – 7pm at the latest – the earlier everyone eats dinner, the better. Some body types want more equal meals, and if you don’t have an instinct, then use that schedule format.  Never skip meals.

___ Make your plates look full. Use luncheon size plates for most meals.

___ The protein should be about the size and thickness of a deck of cards (about 3 – 4 ozs. cooked) or half that for a lesser meal. Two eggs, equivalent beans and dried peas or dals, as well as nuts and seeds are other protein options. Four ounces of red meats or 6 ozs of fish are the max your body can process for a protein source at one meal, so that great big juicy 12 oz. steak mostly is not even used and just becomes toxic waste that overtaxes your kidneys!

___ Vegetables are the only carbohydrates that you need to use. They should be preferably fresh or frozen, not canned, and should take up the rest of the plate i.e. about 70% – 80% of the plate’s area.

As carbs, all veggies should be the mainstay of your diet in all seasons, and I include potatoes and sweet potatoes, parsnips and carrots in sometimes, and in appropriate amounts and preparations. Most vegetables are potent alkalizers. You DO NOT NEED any other carbs, and if you use grains, be especially careful, as huge numbers of people have food sensitivities to them or outright allergies. Rice and Quinoa, Buckwheat and Amaranth are the least likely to produce allergy. Quinoa, Buckwheat and Amaranth are actually, botanically, fruits, and are alkaline foods!

Listen to your body; if you truly, deeply don’t “like” a food, don’t eat it. If you want to check if you are likely sensitive to it (or anything else in your environment), follow the instructions at: Kiniesiology Self-Testing.

___ You also need monosaturated or omega-3 healthy fats. Use 1  1/2 t per meal of hemp oil or flax oil (never cook either of these!) or have about 1 1/2t of olive oil or 1   1/2T vinaigrette dressing (with organic olive, flax or hemp oil and organic apple cider vinegar and lemon juice) or organic butter or ghee on them (which ever is appropriate). No margarine; no “vegetable” oils; no deep fried foods or hydrogenated fats like Crisco.

Healthy saturated fat is organic coconut oil. Healthy and saturated fat in the same breath is not an oxymoron. Read my articles in the Archive, above, about the miraculous goodness of coconut. But it is a limited food, when used in its fat form. You need just a tiny bit, daily, to help produce important hormones, and “no”, other saturated fats won’t provide the same benefit.

___ Fruits are dense carbohydrates and are Nature’s dessert. They should be used only once or twice a day, at most, and NO fruit juices — they are blood-sugar imbalancers. Only some fruits are alkaline and all cooked fruits are pH acidic — not where you want to be!

Never use high fructose corn syrup in anything and never use fructose as your sweetener — these are VERY bad for creating high blood sugar readings.

Agave nectar is the best sweetener for diabetics; it is natural and low-glycemic, but it has an acidic pH, so so use it moderately. Buy an organic version.

Use NO artificial sweeteners, including the ones like sucralose which pretend they are not different from Nature, but they still are, as Nature does not chlorinate sugars!

___ Science shows that your brain is calculating visually as to whether it thinks there’s “enough”, and if not, then you will trigger biochemistry which causes you to over-eat by not being satiated. That’s another reason to fill every plate or bowl with lots of nutrient-dense yet low-calorie marvelous veggies!

Eat slowly, as it takes 20 minutes for satiation signals to operate in your brain. Be mindful of your eating; be in a quiet environment or at least a relaxed one. Chew well, preferably chew each bite to liquid.

___ Try to find actual time every day for Quietude or Meditation – formal or informal. And, just walk after one meal, for about 20 – 30 minutes at a moderate – to brisk, but still “conversational” pace. You should never be breathless.

While you can still view it online, spend a little time watching “This Emotional Life” on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). Later, you will still be able to buy the DVD. Last night Episode 3 aired for 2 hours — “Finding Happiness” was fascinating and worthwhile. I encourage you to see it. Finding Happiness – “This Emotional Life”, PBS At the moment, it’s in a video which you can stop and start, if you act now, fitting it in as you can.

OK, I’m going to finish this post and may add another similar one later.

At some point, hopefully soon, Dear Reader, I will return to the Iodine Series to finish up, but I am bogged down about half-way through an 150 page tome and I don’t have the time to finish it right now. Please bear with me.

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com
Please write to the About Me page on the upper navigation bar for permission if you are using more than a couple of sentences to quote. Thanks.

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Here’s your ticket to the most important event – Your Life!

“Everyone Knows Someone Who Needs This Information!” (TM)

Begin the New Year well. Here’s a few pointers. I may continue to add to this post, so check back. Instead of making New Year’s resolutions, make a New Year Checklist. I think you will find you will be able to execute that better.

Here’s a starter:

___   I have made time for myself today.

___   I have put organized steps in place for healthy menus and shopping.

___   I have set aside time to relax and to laugh.

___   I have spent time with loved ones.

___   I have learned to cook simple, healthy meals.

___   I have helped others learn about Health.

___   I have kept the promises I have made to myself.

___   I have begun to advocate for children’s Health.

___   I am thinking only positive, peaceful, life-affirming thoughts.

___   I respect my body, mind and spirit.

Now, use your 2010 Another Chance ticket to initiate the Opening Day of the most important production of your Life. This is the year to learn more and turn around your diabetes.

I’ll continue my life-giving information next week.

(c)2010 Em at https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com

Please write to me at the About Me page above, on the upper Navigation Bar, if you want to use this post and / or image. Thanks.

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