Tuesday, November 30, 2010
" Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them all yourself."
I couldn't pass up a Oscar Wilde quote from "The Picture of Dorian Gray" 1891
"Nowadays most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one's mistakes. "
I do regret mistakes I have made. I have meditated and made amends to those as long as it wouldn't cause he/she any other harm. I have learned from my mistakes. I am not proud of some of my mistakes. However I do not dwell on my mistakes or misgivings. Why dwell on my mistakes, when it is in the past and I cannot do anything about some of them at this time. I can make amends if appropriate. The only problem is that if I have expectations of my amends with individuals I will get disappointed and hurt. I have learned not to have expectations. I even learn from other's mistakes. Are mistakes even mistakes or errors? Or are they part of the learning process. Life is a process.
In being close with plants and using herbs daily I need to discuss the issue of herb-drug interactions. This subject has been given an extraordinary amount of attention over the last fifteen years. There are countless articles in medical journals, the Internet, the press and books on these topics, but I have not seen any drug-herb interaction. I have seen drug-drug interactions. This is due to the fact that patients go from doctor to doctor. The doctor fails to ask about new medications especially if this is a long time patient of the primary physician. With the number of "articles" on herb-drug interaction you would think there would be an overwhelming high mortality. This is not the case. Once again, the media and medical paranoia has overblown this topic. Since I use all herbs I would like to comment on the cardiac herbs I use which could potentially have an interaction with some of the conventional drugs.Many of my cardiac patients are on a 'water pill' as furosemide or lasix. I use one herb and one amino acid as natural diuretics. these are dandelion and L-taurine. I use them with lasix and never have a problem. Sometimes I even decrease the lasix dose. I perform diligent blood test chemistry analysis to watch for lowering of the electrolytes as potassium and sodium. Since herbs are drugs I would use some of these herbs with the guidance of a health care professional. One of my favorite herbs/flowers are Convallaria, also known as Lily of the Valley. I use this herb for control or conversion of an arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation. The individual might also be on digoxin which also is a plant derivative called Foxglove. Since both are cardiac glycosides there can be an interaction and a lowering potentiation of the heart rate to rates less than 60
The one conventional drug I am careful with is warfarin also known as coumadin. Coumadin works on the hepatic (liver metrabolism) using a special pathway. Coumadin thins the blood. Any other drug or even herb that works through the same mechanism can unbalance the thinning of the blood. The special pathway is the CYP450 pathway. It has been written that cranberry juice interferes with this pathway and can interact with coumadin. However studies indicate there is no inhibitory effect when the both are taken together.
When it comes to foods, as green leafy vegetables there is always concern. Not for me. Green leafy vegetables as broccoli, spinach, collard greens contain Vitamin K which can interfere. Instead of stopping all green leafy vegetables which are beneficial to your health, maintain a steady rate of consumption of the greens which taking the coumadin. There are some herbs with Vitamin K that I feel are important to know. These are Nettle's, Spirulina, Shepherd's Purse and Alfalfa all contain Vitamin K. I would not stop these herbs if a patient is on coumadin, but let the individual know of the interaction. I also let patient's know that the herbs, ginkgo and garlic,a s well as the nutrients oils, coenzyme Q10 and Vitamin E can thin the blood. These work through a different mechanism unlike the Vitamin K -coumadin interaction.
Some herbs have an mild to moderate inhibitory effect on this CYP450 pathway. Some of these herbs are ginger, garlic, tumeric, sage and thyme. There are others.
The take away point of knowledge today is this:
There is more of a chance of a drug-drug interaction, than a drug-herb interaction. It has been postulated that if an individual is on 6 of more conventional medications ( which is not uncommon ) the likelihood of an interaction approaches 100%
Find a different way...
Yesterday I saw a patient who has a great soup recipe. The great aspect of making this soup is that large amounts can be made and frozen for when you need it. The title of the soup is “Mulligatawny Soup” I think I should rename it to “ A Week in a Pot” or the “Medicare Soup” It is full of herbs .
1. 3 lbs of organic skinless chicken thighs
2. 3 tablespoons tumeric
3. 2 teaspoons of salt ( optional for the heart patient)
4. 1 teaspoon of ground black pepper
5. 1 teaspoon of ground ginger
6. 2 cups of chopped onion
7. 1 cup of diced celery
8. 1 cup of diced carrots
9. 6 cloves of finely chopped garlic
10. 3 Granny Smith apples ( diced small)
11. 1 pound of sweet potatoes
12. ½ pound of dried lentils
13. 1 ½ cup of diced zucchini
14. 1 ½ cup of diced yellow squash
15. 1 package of frozen spinach ( since I do not use frozen vegetables I cannot recommend a brand)
16. 1 – 14 oz can of unsweetened coconut milk
17. 1 cup of chopped tomatoes
18. Fresh cilantro for garnish
Season the chicken with the tumeric. Toss around in a plastic bag. Place in skillet sauté to golden brown. Set aside. In same pan sauté the onions, carrots and celery until soft. Then add the apples, pepper and ginger. Add the garlic last. Chop the garlic and set aside Transfer to a large pot Add in the sweet potatoes lentils and 1 qt of stock chicken broth ( or your favorite broth) Bring to a boil and then place on simmer. While simmering add the chicken, squash, zucchini tomatoes and coconut milk.
Cook until all tender. I do not want the vegetables a little crisp. I do not like a soup when all the ingredients are soft. Have enough for yourself and your guests. Freeze in plastic containers
Thank you DOLORES D.
Until tomorrow... a new month
Bottom Photograph: How I feel after 2 weeks of Hopsital Rounds
3rd photograph from Top: Rick and I at Thanksgiving Dinner ( Donald/Evan's apt.)
Monday, November 29, 2010
" Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy." - Howard W. Newton
Learning to be tactful is an art. A great British politician, Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881) has two great quotes regarding tactfulness.
" Without tact you can learn nothing. Tact teaches you when to be silent. Inquirers who are always questioning never learn anything. "
"Perseverance and tact are the two great qualities most valuable for all those who would climb, but especially for those who have to step out of the crowd."
You are not born with tact. You learn tact through all of your life experiences. There are times when tactfulness is necessary. I have to be tactful when dealing with an addict patient. I sometimes have to be tactful when dealing with sensitive subjects with patients, friends and family. Hopefully with your own life partner you can speak freely, but sometimes tactfulness is also necessary. I am fortunate to have an open communication line so tactfulness is not always used. I believe that like , common sense, you are either born with it or not. For me, common sense and tactfulness was not inherited but learned. It was a good learning process. Do you have tactfulness ?
One of the most important will discussed anti-aging nutrients is resveratrol. It is found in red wine, the skin of unripe young red grapes, grape seeds and even in peanuts. It is also found in two herbs, one, is Polygonum cuspidatum and the other is Senna quinquangulata. These are Chinese and South American, respectively. Polygonum cuspidatum, is also known as Japanese knot weed The flowers are valued by some beekeepers as an important source of nectar for honeybees, at a time of year when little else is flowering. Japanese knot weed yields a mono floral honey, usually called bamboo honey by northeastern U.S. beekeepers, like a mild-flavored version of buckwheat honey . See everything comes back to the bees.
The young stems of knot weed are edible as a spring vegetable, with a flavor similar to mild rhubarb.If you a history of kidney stones I would caution you since this plant contains oxalates. Oxalates can be a cause of your kidney stones. This plant can also aggravate rheumatism, arthritis, gout, or hyperacidity.
Is your resveratrol from grapes or knotweed. Check the label. Both Japanese knot weed and giant knot weed are important concentrated sources of resveratrol, replacing grape byproducts. Many large supplement sources of resveratrol now use Japanese knot weed and use its scientific name in the supplement labels. The other source, is Senna quinquangulata. Senna is a genus of flowering plants containing at least 260 species, although only about 50 species are commercially important. Most species are native to tropical regions of the world, but a few grow in temperate regions. Herbalists most often prescribe senna leaf tea as a laxative. S. quinquagulata is the another source of resveratrol. The various research studies on resveratrol are impressive. It is a powerful anti oxidant, anti inflammatory and some have used it against some cancers. Resveratrol even has an anti platelet effect. I have seen other doctors use resveratrol for cholesterol lowering effects. I use plant sterols, guggulipids, policosinol, green tea and red rice yeast for their cholesterol lowering effects. New studies indicate that resveratrol reduces the risk of colorectal cancer . Other studies state resveratrol can slow the progression of Alzheimer's Disease. More studies need to be completed. What is the correct dose for resveratrol ? Who knows. I suggest doses greater than 250 mg.
Stop aging. Follow the anti aging tips and take one resveratrol per day.
I do not know if Benjamin Disraeli had tactfulness. Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield,(21 December 1804 – 19 April 1881) was a British Prime Minister, parliamentarian, Conservative statesman and literary figure. He served in government for three decades, twice as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He served under Queen Victoria. I can tell you the actor who portrayed Disraeli in 1929 was none other than the most tactful artist, George Arliss ( 1868 - 1946) Mr. Arliss was one of the oldest actors on the screen during the 1920's and 1930's. He was the first British actor to win an Academy Award. He also defeated himself in the Best Actor category. It was a time when actors were nominated mroe than onc e in different roles. You probably do not know who George Arliss was. If you are a Bette Davis fan you should. If it wasn't for Arliss recommending Ms. David to Warner Brothers for "The Man who Played God" we would never have had Bette, nor the her make up king Perc Westmore. Fromt hat first movie because of Arliss< Ms Davis spent 18 years at Warner Brothers. Thank you Mr. Arliss.
Top Photograph: George Arliss
Bottom Photograph: Prime Minister Disraeli
Sunday, November 28, 2010
"YOU GIVE BUT LITTLE WHEN YOU GIVE OF YOUR POSSESSIONS. IT IS WHEN YOU GIVE OF YOURSELF THAT YOU TRULY GIVE."
"LIFE'S MOST PERSISTENT AND URGENT QUESTION IS, WHAT ARE YOU DOING FOR OTHERS?"
Both quotes ask what are you doing for others. Do you give yourself freely to others. I feel it is important to give to others. I try to do that to the best of my ability 100% of the time. I have found that I must also give to myself, in order to effectively give to others. This is important especially in any profession that gives, like the health care profession. The giving to myself is my various hobbies, my meditation time, my prayer and for me writing this blog. It helps me to ground myself as I write. Writing has been a good therapy for me. Needlework and knitting has been the other.
The second quote by Martin Luther King, Jr asks " What are you doing for others?" What did you do for another individual today? For the past five years I gave selflessly to others as a volunteer physician. It was rewarding, yet sometimes stressful. Moving on is healthy. I know at the Holiday time, I do a Children's Toy Drive and this year will donate to the New York City Coat Drive, but I do need to do a year long volunteer project. Or do I?
Yesterday I was sharing tips to slow the aging process. I want to reset your biological clock. I know I have been trying to reset mine for years. Dietary lifestyle and exercise changes have been two of my stepping stones in my 7 steps to a healthy lifestyle. With those two you must drink more water and have your physician discuss your body composition and weight. If your doctor cannot do it, see a nutritionist or nutrition advisor.
The ideal body weight is based on body mass index. Men should have a body fat composition less than 18% and females less than 22%. Did you know that by increasing your muscle mass you help reduce insulin sensitivity (which leads to diabetes) and other hormonal regulation? Another tip to slow aging is to stop nicotine. This is difficult. I should know.
Alcohol is very controversial. We do know that red wines are effective in certain biological processes since they contain resveratrol. Studies indicate 20 grams or a 6 oz glass of red wine is beneficial, however MORE is not better. MORE has detrimental health consequences. I am not an avid proponent of using alcohol to get your resveratrol content. I advocate using resveratrol in capsule form. I also know it is important to realize for yourself if you drink too much. Only you can accept this concept. Friends and family might have spoken those words. Remember the 3 A's: Awareness, acknowledgement and acceptance is the key.
There is no proof that any specific vita nutrient, mineral or supplement can prolong life. But there is no proof that they cannot either. If a nutrient has no harm to you if taken the correct way-then why wouldn't you take it? We do know that diet alone cannot allow you to obtain every mineral and vitamin. Studies indicate that co enzyme Q10, EGCG ( found in green tea) Vitamin C, D and the B can increase life expectancy in rats. What I do caution is that more sometimes is not better, as is the case with iron, beta-carotene and vitamin E. Be informed and be educated.
New studies have shown that increasing blood levels of glutathione, a powerful intracellular anti-oxidant can reduce the complications of heart attacks, strokes and some cancers. I believe in administering glutathione intravenously. For those who are not fond of needles, you can take glutathione in powdered form. Some know that the precursor to glutathione is N-acetyl cysteine. Unfortunately you would have to take many 300 or 600 mg capsules to achieve the same effect as powdered or intravenous glutathione.
Personally, having a tablespoon of wildflower honey (raw honey) with its bactericidal effects against many organisms will increase life expectancy. Who could argue with a 2000 year old tradition?
I got it! A new volunteer project/hobby: Beekeeping and giving the honey to friends
Saturday, November 27, 2010
"Life is thickly sown with thorns, and I know no other remedy than to pass quickly through them. The longer we dwell on our misfortunes, the greater is their power to harm us."
"Since people are going to be living longer and getting older, they'll just have to learn how to be babies longer." - Andy Warhol
Who doesn't want to live longer? Can anyone ensure that they will live longer? You
are not Oscar Wilde's Dorian Grey! I do not want to dwell on misfortunes as that will cause stress which will eventually lead to a death at a younger age. It has been shown that stress, anger and resentment will cause an individual to develop a disease and more than likely succumb to that disease.
We all can age successfully. I want to lead a active full life and when my time comes I want to exit quickly. I mean quickly. As I see suffering every day, I do not want to suffer. I do not want my patients to suffer. In order to live longer you MUST have a healthy mind, body and spirit. You cannot stop the aging process. There are tips to slow the aging process. Allowing others (people , places and things) to run amok in our minds will only speed up the aging process.
Longevity is always in the news. Two months ago I read about the oldest living man
in Montana. He is age 114.
In general, advances in medical technology and healthy lifestyle information have been helping Americans live longer than ever, although the large majority will still never make it to age 100. I have had the pleasure of seeing more than 8 patients reach 100 years. One patient age 103 lives in Florida and we still keep in contact. Her son recently had a bypass. Mary is doing quite well. Endina turned 100 two months ago.
The data on the U.S. Census Bureau website finds that as of 2008, there were nearly 4.3 million people in the U.S. over the age of 85, amounting to about 1.4 percent of the population. Women were nearly twice as likely as men to make it to this age, consistent with longstanding data which finds women have a longer life expectancy than men in general.
There are some normal aging processes that each of you should know about:
1. the brain shrinks; loss of cognitive function and memory
2. hearing becomes impaired
3. vision worsens with loss of visual acuity
4. the skin loses elasticity
5. smell and taste decrease
6. fat increases as lean muscle mass and bone mass decrease
7. the kidney size decreases
8. the incidence of cardiovascular death increases
9. the lungs lose elasticity
10. the pancreas produces less insulin
11. the hair thins
All of the above can lead to disease. There are simple tips if you want to live longer. Throughout the blog you have read some of these, but we all need a reminder as the new year approaches.
TIPS FOR AGING GRACEFULLY
1. Eat an anti-inflammatory diet.
--Reduce refined carbohydrates
--Reduce saturated fats; eliminate trans fats
--Increase omega 3 essential fatty acids
--Increase consumption of greens
--Increase consumption of all fruits and vegetables; careful on the high glycemic ones
--Use high quality protein such as cold water fish
--Reduce consumption of red meat
2. Consume more water every day
--maximal half your body weight in fluid ounces
--minimal: 30 minutes 3 - 4 times week
--optimal: one hour every day - combination of aerobic and resistance training
More aging tips tomorrow...
Photograph: Josephine Ray at age 114. Died while planning her 115 birthday celebration.
Friday, November 26, 2010
“People spend too much time finding other people to blame, too much energy finding excuses for not being what they are capable of being, and not enough energy putting themselves on the line, growing out of the past, and getting on with their lives.”
- J. Michael Straczynski
Why would you want to put it on yourself, when you can blame others? It seems so logical to find your faults in what others do and say. I used to live in that place. It is a hard place to get out of. It takes time, energy, patience and work. I tell people you cannot be straddled across the brook or stream and have one foot on each side. You have to jump in and go with the flow. You have to put yourself on the line to move ahead. Stop reacting and start acting. I know it is not easy. It sounds so easy. You might be stuck in a situation - a job, or a relationship. You do not know how to proceed. You would rather stay where you are and not to rock the boat or hurt the other person, but deep deep down you are unhappy. You feel the void. We all have been there. I certainly have. Either you want it to work or you do not want it to work. Try to talk to someone - your doctor, a therapist, a clergy person, a sponsor. Holding it in will not ease the pain nor solve the problem. Meditate and pray on the problem. It does get better
I have always read the quotes of OW and WO. Oscar Widle and William Osler. It is strange that the initials are reversed. Oscar Wilde said this:
“The great events of life often leave one unmoved; they pass out of consciousness, and, when one thinks of them, become unreal. Even the scarlet flowers of passion seem to grow in the same meadow as the poppies of oblivion.”
I love this quote especially sicne Oscar mentions both passion flowers and poppies. Both have sedative properties for the nervous system.
After yesterdays Holiday eating how do you feel today ? Do you feel tired, fatigued and just blah. You probably had too many carbohydrates. Did you have your sweet potatoes without marsh mellows and brown sugar ? I did. As you communed with your family and friend yesterday did you give thanks to the farmers, yourselves, your neighbors and your family for the art of growing power and the eternal abundance of healthy food that sat before you on the day.
This del;icious shake is packed with energy building nutrients. Combine the following below with your favorite fruit ( although be careful about the glycemic load )
1. 2 cups of almond or coconut milk
2. 1 heaping tablespoon of Longevity Nutritionals Daily Greens
Daily Greens is a dietary supplement developed to support detoxification. With it's great tasting, apple cinnamon flavored, easy-to-mix powder, you can be certain it is a complete formula of rich vegetables, fruits, herbs, enzymes, prebiotics and probiotics ( check out www.longevitynutritionals.com )
3. 1 teaspoon of Siberian ginseng ( Eleuthrococcus)
4. 1 teaspoon of Astragalus
5. 1 teaspoon of Hawthorne
6. 1/2 cup of Goat Yogurt (Plain)
7. 1/4 - 1/2 cup of blueberries or raspberries ( I use organic berries from www.vitalchoice.com )
8. 1/4 banana ( optional)
Combine in blender and process. Delicious...
Remember herb powders are a simple and effective way to get them in. They are medicines. You can combine with fruits, honey and yogurt. Great way for your children to get nutrition. You can find powdered herbs, commercially available at www.mountainroseherbs.com or www.frontierherbs.com or www.gaiaherbs.com ) You cannot keep powdered herbs for a long time. Store in glass container. Only buy what you think you will need.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
" Real thanksgiving is thanks-living and giving; three little words"
The times have changed, conditions of the world have altered and are changing rapidly, but when such a holiday occurs it takes me back to my childhood in simpler days and ways. The family ideals which were always inspired in holiday seasons are ideals that are ever old. Yet these thankful ideas are always fresh and new. Today is Thanksgiving- a day of giving and living.
Today in New York City it is a busy morning. Since 1924 there has been a Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Today was no exception. The first real balloon was Felix the Cat in 1927 and Mickey Mouse in 1934. Millions of people gather early to get a good look at the floats, the bands, the balloons and of course, Santa Claus. The subway was crowded with strollers. The children getting excited to see the parade--possibly their first. I remember when my Mom and Dad took my brother and I to the parade. We went with their friends from the Knights of Columbus. I recall the feature balloon that year was either Underdog or Smoky the Bear. As a father I experienced what many parents experienced this morning. I remember sipping hot chocolate on the parade route under blankets with my children. It was memorable. As they got older we went to the Inflation of the Balloons on West 81st the night before. This morning, I watched the parade from the 10th floor window facing east at Roosevelt Hospital. I got excited all over again especially when I saw the Uncle Sam
Today appreciate your blessings.
The physician's heart is the most important aspect of a medical practice. States by Sir William Osler---of the three factors in practice- heart, head and pocket, to our credit be it said, the first named is the most important. The heart is the most important. Not because I am a cardiologist, nor because it is the most essential organ of the body, but because without a 'real' heart in a physician neither the patient nor the physician will ever know what true medicine is. The physician without a heart will never appreciate the person behind their disease. All physicians need a clear head and a kind heart. Both must be cultivated. I am not here to get all I can out of my life, but chosen to be here to try to make the lives of others happier.
I do not want to discuss any medical topic today.
I want to give thanks to all individuals that have crossed my path in my lifetime.
I must thank my Higher Power for giving, and allowing me to be here today to even write these words.
The notes of sadness and daily medical tragedies would be insupportable were it not relieved by the spectacle of heroism and devotion displayed by my patients, my life partner, Rick, my children, Gregory and Alyssa, Fred and Nancy and countless others.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
" Life's little duties should never come before love. Make time for those you care about."
The 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln said this:
“Let us have faith that right makes right, and in that faith let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it.”
As we approach the beginning of the Holiday Season you will always find little duties to do in addition to the normal chores - shopping for food, cooking, washing clothes, writing checks and bills etc. None of these duties- daily or Holiday extras should come before L-O-V-E. If you truly care about someone, the love for them should come first. As I perform my daily hospital rounds with my medical students, interns and resident , I am reminded are those patients I see -loved by someone ? These unfortunate in-patients will be in the hospital on a Holiday. A Day of Giving. Am I giving to them by keeping them in the hospital ? I am caring for them, and treating them so the answer should be 'Yes' Yet, I am looking beyond that. I might discharge some of those patients, but only if I know they will have family and friends to spend the Day of Giving with. Some patients are fighting for their lives. Some have undergone major operations while others are receiving chemotherapy and radiation. A friend wrote the following about a patient , " you are demonstrating grace in the face of great stress, a sense of humor, even in the darkest times, and a deep fortitude that is quite frankly inexplicable and damn inspiring." My problems are luxurious and quite tiny compared to what I see and hear on a daily basis. I am grateful. These examples allow me to love more. I have a partner that understands that my life duties are beyond the normal ones. I see patients with courage in abundance.
Ernest Hemingway classic definition of courage is " Grace Under Pressure"
I am grateful for my Higher Power allowing me to witness ' grace under pressure' and allowing me to humbly participate in the care of these loving patients.
This is time where you should be thinking about the planet. As the year ends what has happened to disturb the eco-system of the planet. Plenty has happened. Natural disasters, and man-made disasters ( as oil spills )
I want to run away sometimes. Have you ever felt that way. ? As the world' soil crisis spirals out of control, many consumers are trying to help. If you want to take a break ---a vacation otherwise known as a holiday have you sever thought to go to a green environment. Rick and I tried to make Fire Island green. We did our part. We had to realize we a just one of the few that want change. A community has to change. We want to travel to places that are Green Globe 21. This is a world wide benchmarking and certification program for travel and tourism. These hotels and resorts are not everywhere. But those that are Green Globe 21 certified have met a certain number of environmental requirements. Those that are Green Globe 21 certified must be re-certified every year. This program encourages travelers to be environment conscious. We are trying to participate in such programs. I am not an expert. I am trying to be informed. If I am informed you can be informed. There are such eco-destinations. Google it and find out.
Rick and I will be exploring three (3) such destinations:
1. The Zion Lodge in Utah ( zionlodge.com )
2. 3 Rivers in Dominica (3riversdominica.com)
3. Canada ( canadianmoutainholidays.com)
It depends on the time of the year but option 1 and 2 are enticing. I want to see the diverse plants of Utah, but I want the paradise of the island Dominica.
I count ALL of you reading this in my many many blessings this Thanksgiving
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
" MAKE IT YOUR GOAL TO BE SOMEONE THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SPEND TTHE REST OF YOUR LIFE WITH"
The above if read too fast might read find someone that you would like to spend the rest of your life with. It doesn't say that. It states for YOU to be someone that you would like to spend the rest of your life with. This means YOU. Would you spend the rest of your life with yourself if there could be a double of you ? What character or personality traits do you like or dislike about yourself ? During my work with the twelve steps I read a book called " Finding the Boyfriend Within" It changed my perspective about me. Although it is geared towards gay men I have used a lot of what I learned in that book to help people find the girlfriend within themselves , or the friend within themselves or the spouse within themselves. You cannot be happy with another individual if you are not happy yourself. You have to help you first, if you wish to help others in your life. I do not like the fact that I talk to much when within a group. I listen but I always want to interject. Not nice. I get so excited about a variety of topics that I want to share it, and sometimes interrupt conversations. Not nice. I do not like the fact that I can be impulsive. Not nice. It is great that I am aware and acknowledge these character defects, but it is the acceptance of those defects that can be tricky. I have accepted my flaws. Remember no one is perfect. If you accept the flaws it is easier to work on them. It is all about the three (3) A's - AWARENESS, ACKNOWLEDGMENT AND ACCEPTANCE. Change creates fear, but in the long run you will see the positive results in you. You will even see people change because they have recognized a new you. For today , I must work on listening to my partner, family and friends. What would like to work on today. JUST FOR TODAY --
As Thanksgiving approaches, start to prepare yourself for more food than you normally eat. Eat smart. I consider this Holiday the first deadly sin of the three- The next one is Christmas and /or Hanukkah and third is New Years. It is a food fest from the 25th of November till January 1st 2011. There will be lots of eating and drinking.
I wait for two dishes on Turkey Day. One is sweet potatoes and the other is pumpkin pie. Sweet potatoes are rich in nutrients, velvety smooth in texture and sweet on the tongue. The sweet potato is particularly complemented by spicy or sweet southern-style recipes. I know some people add marsh mellows or extra sugar to the sweet potato. I do not understand why. The sweet potatoes can be pureed, mashed, in a casserole or spice-rubbed. Do you cook sweet potatoes for the holiday ? Try one of these warming, hospitable sweet potato dishes for Thursday. Are there health benefits if you eat a sweet potato ? Of course there are.
Sweet potato is rich in Vitamin A (beta carotene) and Vitamin C. Both Vitamins A and C are powerful antioxidants that work in the body to remove free radicals, this free radicals are chemicals that damage cells.Sweet potato is good for stomach ulcers and inflamed conditions of the colon. There are some small studies on lowering blood pressure. I rather eat artichoke hearts !
Sweet potatoes may be helpful for hemorrhoid because of its high fiber content.
Sweet potato is a good food for people involved in heavy muscular work, since this food is high in vitamins and minerals. Due to the high dose of Vitamin A, it can help reduce the cancer risk. Diabetics sometimes avoid sweet potatoes, because of the word ' sweet' However a sweet potato has a lower glycemic index ( sugar load) than a white potato. I encourage diabetics to eat sweet potatoes. I also tell people to order sweet potato fries instead of french fries. Do you think McDonalds or Burger King will ever sell sweet potato fries ?
This is what is in a sweet potato:
Nutritive Values : Per 100 gm.
Vitamin A : 7,700 I.U.
Vitamin B : Thiamine .09 mg.;
Riboflavin : .05 mg.
Niacin : .6 mg.
Vitamin C : 22 mg.
Calcium : 30 mg.
Iron : .7 mg.
Phosphorus : 49 mg.
Potassium : 300 mg.
Fat : .7 gm.
Carbohydrates : 27.9 gm.
Protein : 1.8 gm.
Calories : 123
Not bad for your dietary lfiestyle change.
Monday, November 22, 2010
" We all have ability. The difference is how we use it. " Stevie Wonder
This statement can be said of John F Kennedy. He had the ability and knew how to use it. However his life was shortened 47 years ago today. Most of us know where we were when we heard the news. For weeks after this saddened day, the news had quotes and photographs of JFK. The photograph of John Jr saluting his father's casket is never forgotten. " And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country " will be forever on the tips of our tongues. The next is my favorite JFK quote: "As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. "
Do you have ability ? You do. First recognize it. Then use it. Put the ability into action. I knew I had ability to help people. I lost that ability or didn't trust my ability when I attended my twelve step program. I felt I didn't have a lot to give. I knew I had the brains, but couldn't put it into action. I didn't have a supporting life partner at that time. So last night, " Bells are Ringing" had lyrics that summed up what happened which seems so long ago. I NOW have the supporting partner in life. I began to use the ability , my Higher Power has given me--Just in Time...
Just in time you’ve found me just in time
Before you came my time was running low
I was lost the losing dice were tossed
My bridges all were crossed nowhere to go
Now you hear now I know just where I’m going
No more doubt of fear I’ve found my way
For love came just in time
you’ve found me just in time
And changed my lonely nights that lucky day
Just in time
Before you came my time was running low oh baby
I was lost the losing dice were tossed
My bridges all crossed nowhere to go
Now you hear now I know just where I’m going
No more doubt of fear I’ve found my way
For love came just in time you’ve found me
just in time
And changed my lonely nights and changed
my lonely nights
And changed my lonely nights and changed
my lonely nights
And changed my lonely nights that lucky day
I am in awe of individuals living on a farm. I am not jealous but envious of those that can do that. I want to do that. I want to get about 15 friends together and all invest in farm. It would a place to for all of us to get back down to the earth. It sounds idealistic but it is a dream. At the American herbal Guild conference I listened to William Siff. He is an acupuncturist and herbalist who founded the Goldthread Herbal Apothecary and Farm. I love their concepts of community supported agriculture.
Goldthread Herb Farm is a Medicinal Herb Farm nestled in the hills of Conway, Massachusetts. The farm is situated on a south facing hilltop, surrounded by hundreds of acres of mixed conifers and hardwoods, teeming with wildlife, and blessed with abundant streams and brooks.I am hoping to make a trip there next summer between beekeeping in Fire Island. The area has a long history and commitment to agriculture and land stewardship and we are proud to be a part of this tradition.
You must read their website:
" At Goldthread, our goal is to provide a source for Organically grown and sustainably Wild Harvested Medicinal plants and plant preparations that are of the highest quality and crafted with the greatest care and attention to detail. Providing these here at our Apothecary reflects our commitment to the understanding that the health of the individual, and the community is inextricably connected to the health of our ecosystems. It is our hope that these medicines enhance your well being, enliven your senses, and provide you with as much fulfillment as we receive from growing them."
Our ancestors had the answer. Think about it --your own grandmothers had remedies made from herbs. Reclaim the ability to take care of yourself, your family and friends by having a garden and growing herbs. Become involved.
This is the new grassroots health revolution--not new to me, but possibly new to all of you reading this. As individuals, we can come together as a community in the spirit of cooperation and learn to plant seeds, love plants and use the herbs.
You can try to start this is your community...
Rick and I had this dream to start with recycling in Cherry Grove Fire Island. It didn't work --too much drama and politics--but we will start on a slower pace . Start with growing herbs and sharing them and collecting honey.
Sunday, November 21, 2010
" IT IS BETTER TO BELIEVE THAN TO DISBELIEVE; IN SO DOING, YOU BRING EVERYTHING TO THE REALM OF POSSIBILITY." - Albert Einstein
You cannot argue with one of greatest geniuses of our time. I find Mr Einstein to have some of my favorite quotes. There are many quotes I like on 'believing' Two of my favorite quotes are the following:
"Dreams are like the paints of a great artist. Your dreams are your paints, the world is your canvas. Believing, is the brush that converts your dreams into a masterpiece of reality.”
“Life ends when you stop dreaming, hope ends when you stop believing, love ends when you stop caring, friendship ends when you stop sharing... so share this with whom ever you consider a friend.”
I always want to believe rather than disbelieve. Believing in something takes trust. Do you have trust ? Have you trusted too many individuals ? I have. I used to wear my feelings on 'my sleeve' as they say. I try not to do this any longer. It sometimes is difficult because I am caring, generous and loving individual. I believe that my Higher Power would never put anything in my life that he/she thought I couldn't handle. I do not like everything that has been in my path, but i am still here to talk about it. This alone must be a good thing.
Today I believe that my father( July 8, 1921- November 21, 2005) is gazing down and telling me everything will be ok. I imagine him smiling and not yelling. I know he always believed in me although he might not have shared that with me. I do not beat myself up anymore about the past. I am in a good space. My morning meditation was so serene.
What did you eat for breakfast? I wanted to have buckwheat pancakes but I didn't. I had goat yogurt, Kashi cereal with unsweetened soy and a cup of tea. The reason I didn't have the pancakes is that I didn't want to have the syrup. I have often thought about obtaining my own sap from a maple tree. It is one of those 'yets'
I have done most of my 'yets' Maple syrup from the winter and spring sap is what some people do. I would love to contact a maple sugar mill, but there is none in New York City. I will have to do that when I go back to Ithaca. Maybe the Catskills?
I am prepared to do it. Here is what I read about it.
1. Using a brace and a 3/8 inch bit, drill hole int he bark until you hit hardwood
2. Clean the hole thoroughly
3. Use a hammer to drive into the tap
4. For trees less than 10 inches wide use one tap
5. For trees greater than 10 inches, you can use more than one tap
6. Collect the sap with a covered pail
There are different techniques to boil the sap over an open fire. I do not think I would be doing this, but you never know. The wood must be dry not to give the taste of the syrup an undesirable flavor. Individuals who have done this use three pans over a long rectangle fire, pouring the sugar water from pan to pan. The last pan will have the thickest richest water.
It sounds so fun.
It has been written that you can also tap sap from a black walnut, white birch, yellow birch and black birch. I just want to try it once.
If you want the buckwheat or gluten free waffles ( Van's) you can puree blueberries or any berry . Pour the puree over the pancakes. I have done this - Tastes great !!
Saturday, November 20, 2010
" Begin each day with the certainty that today is the best day of your life and watch what happens "
I try to live life to the fullest. Make the best of every day as if it were your last. I begin ecah day with meditation. Not what I used to do in the past. I begin each day saying morning to G.O.D. I get an answer that says 'hello' It is Gracie, my Amazon Green Parrot.She answers me. She is full of life. I am grateful to have her. I fed her when she was 3 months old. She is now 7 or 8 years old. I really do not know what that means in parrot years ! Do you life to the fullest ? Do you begin each day with the certainty that today is the best day ? It seems unrealistic to think like that, but from experience it is the best attitude. Even on my worst days, it truly is my best day. I pray for all be certain that today is their best day.
Thje day unfolds. Sometimes it is a very good day and others it is not. I can start my day over at any time I want to if the day doesn't start the way I think it should. This is beautiful. To start a day over. There is no governed rule about if you can start the day over. It works for me. Try is for yourself
Today not only is a new day, but it started with a new hair look !
Everyone wants to stay healthy. I know it is harder for women as they get older due to hormones, irregular periods, depression and menopausal disorders. It is hard for men as they begin to loose their hair, have a decreased sex drive and start to gain weight in the middle section.
It still goes back to the basics. The basics is a dietary lifestyle change. Do you eat well? If you are looking for the cure all diet or the diet from a book, then you have come to the wrong blog. Overlooking that I worked side by side with the famous diet doctor, Robert Atkins, I still do not believe a diet can fit everyone nor could you read and follow a diet from a book.
Eat less refined carbohydrates – that means avoid the ‘white stuff’
Try to eat foods as close to their natural state as possible
Eat all fruits and vegetables within the season
Find the fruits and vegetable that grow within your local area
Pay attention to what foods make you feel good
Eat foods that do not cause abdominal bloating, gas and changes in your bowel habits
Drink plenty of water
Eat organic if possible; wash all fruit/vegetables with a vegetable wash or apple cider vinegar
Eat food that is warming and alkalizing . Alkaline means eating more clean vegetables; more low glycemic fruits as berries and steamed grains
Consume 1 tablespoon of wild flower honey from your local beekeeper.
Friday, November 19, 2010
THE MEASURE OF love IS TO love WITHOUT MEASURE-
I do not know who has the better quote- Saint Augustine or yesterdays Pope John XXIII. Love is a F-O-U-R letter word . Some people may use it too loosely while others use it wisely. There is also unconditional love. This love is unique and cannot even be described in words. A child of 2 hugging his mother, your dog running to the door and licking your face, or possibly your aged father as you help feed him Sunday dinner. I quote about LOVE more often than any other topic.
Perhaps it is because I feel LOVE for life. I couldn't say that twenty years ago. As I have grown older, I have begun to look at love in a different way. What do you love? My affinity for plants as living creatures has changed me. When I look, touch, and feel a flower or a plant, I do it as if I were its father. I do it gently and tenderly. It is a creation of someone greater than myself. The bees see to its pollination and reproduction. The sun, rain and wind keep it alive. Do you ever think like that? Do you appreciate these things in life? Or do you sweat the small things. There are some who seem incapable of love. I know individuals who have fear of intimacy and fear of love. Fear of committing to the love of only one other human being. Some equate love and sex. These are two very different ideals. Think about love today. What do you actually LOVE?
It's medicinal properties were first recorded in the 1st century AD. Pliny and Galen talked about it but never its medicinal use. It is cited in Duke's Medicinal Plants of the Bible. The eclectic physicians of the 1800's discussed it medicinal benefits. I have used it since I first started practicing. It is Hawthorne (Cratageus oxyacantha), the most popularly used herb throughout Europe for the heart. All of its parts are used and the berries are even used to make jam.
Since 1994, there have been human studies on its efficacy and benefit in patients with heart failure. Compared to ACE inhibitors as captopril there is no difference in exercise tolerance. So why not take this plant for heart failure? Just for you to know--these human studies are not with small study groups. One study had greater than 1400 patients while other studies sometimes only have 30-40 patients. I would like to see more studies done with Hawthorn since most of the studies were performed in the 1990's.
The animal and in vitro studies are more numerous, but again many were performed in the 1990's. I have personally used hawthorn in patients for blood pressure control, heart failure, and abnormal rhythms. I have had much success with hawthorn through the last 15 plus years.
So you want to make jam? You need to pick or buy hawthorn berries. The time to collect the berries has already gone this year, so save this recipe and make plans for next year. The time to pick is September to early October.
HAWTHORN BERRY JAM
Pick 1.5lbs of hawthorn berries (This will make 1 jar of hawthorn jelly )
Make sure that you remove the stalks. A good way is to simply roll a clump of berries (stalks and all) in between your hands, and you’ll find they just roll off. It’s certainly easier than individually pulling off each stalk.
Now wash your berries (they look like cranberries) and then drain.
Put the berries into a heavy saucepan, and cover with 1.5 cups of water.
Bring to a boil and simmer for 1 hour. Mash the berries with a potato masher every 20 minutes.
Now strain the mixture over night using some muslin, or as I did, a jelly bag.
To keep the jelly clear do not squeeze the jelly bag, just let the juice drip. If you’re not concerned about your hawthorn jelly being clear, then squeeze away.
For every 1 pint of juice measure out 1lb of sugar. (I would prefer you use stevia or xylitol.) You can even use raw wildflower honey
Now squeeze in the juice of 1 lemon.
Mix the sugar and lemon juice into a heavy saucepan along with the hawthorn juice. Bring the mixture to the boil, stirring continuously until the sugar has dissolved.
Now rapid boil for 10 minutes until the jelly has reached setting point.
Skim off any foam from the top of the jelly liquid, and pour into sterilized, warm jars and screw on the lids.
Eat at will. There is no need to leave the hawthorn jelly for a month or so
Thursday, November 18, 2010
"Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.”
- Pope John XXIII
This is as eloquent as it comes. It clarifies everything. Pope John makes it simple. Do not worry about your fears, be concerned with your hopes and dreams. Do not dwell on failures but focus instead on successes you have yet to achieve. It seems so easy to write, but to achieve this is not as easy. It will all come true, but not in your wished time. It must unfold when it will unfold. You must have patience. I have plenty of patience today. Life should be enjoyed. I focus on my dreams, aspirations and dreams. I still dream. Do you still dream about your hopes and aspirations? We all should still dream. Shoot for the stars. I only have one or two dreams left. What are your dreams? I will tell you one of mine that came true. I wanted an Oscar Statuette. Thanks to Rick, I received one from my children for my 50th birthday.
In honor and remembrance of my dad (he is gone 5 years this month ) I wanted to tell you about his pesto sauce. At age 52 my father became widowed. He had to cook for himself. After WWII, he owned a restaurant in Coney Island so he knew how to cook. He loved to cook. His two favorite things were pounding out chicken cutlets and making Pesto. Pesto is an Italian word that comes from the Latin verb "to pound" or " to crush". Herb pestos can accompany many food dishes. Most of you are familiar with pesto/pasta combinations.
Basil is the typical main ingredient of pesto. It helps lower blood pressure, reduce the symptoms of gastrointestinal diseases such as ulcers and colitis, and even helps asthma. In the Far East, basil is used more for the common flu and associated symptoms. I have seen pestos made with parsley, cilantro, sorrell and even watercress. I have tasted an oregano pesto which I found to be sharply flavored. There are many food books on Pestos. I love the books Very Pesto and the Pesto Manifesto.
Pat's Basil Pesto
1. 1 1/2 cups of fresh basil leaves
2. 2 cloves of garlic
3. 1/4 pine nuts or walnuts
4. 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (can use Goat cheese)
5. 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Chop the basil in the blender. Add the garlic and walnuts and blend into a puree, then slowly add the cheese. Slowly add the olive oil until all is finished . You want the mixture to be that of creamy butter. Pack into a container removing the air pockets. To prevent the pesto from darkening pour the rest of the olive oil over the top. Put in the refrigerator. It will last for weeks. For longer storage (which I recommend so you can use your pesto in the winter) freeze it in small quantities. If you grew a lot of basil and other herbs this summer (as I did) simply blend the herbs in oil and refrigerate them until you have a free Saturday to prepare your pesto.
Top photograph: My Dad, (far right) and his friend, Michael. We were all on one of the Atkins Cruises. This one was to Italy. He might be enjoying his Pesto that night.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
"THE MORE FLEXIBLE OUR LIVES, THE MORE EASILY WE WILL BE ATTRACTED TO AN UNEXPECTED OPPORTUNITY."
Opportunities. How many have we missed? Nothing is so often irretrievably missed as a daily opportunity. ~Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach
Every day we have opportunities. The opportunity to start the day with a smile. We have the opportunity to do a good deed. We have the opportunity to start the day over anytime we want to, especially when it starts on a bad note. We have the opportunity to shake a hand or give a hug. We have the opportunity to be self-less, honest and trustworthy to another individual.
I used to think of opportunity only as growth for me in terms of business. Yes I have those kind of opportunities too. But today I am discussing opportunities of the soul. The opportunities we often take for granted. The opportunities that can help someone less fortunate and in need of assistance. You must be flexible and ready for such opportunities. You have to be open-minded. You have to be less rigid. You have to let go. You might even say a little impulsive and risky.
Did you miss an opportunity today?
Even though it is not summer I want to discuss bites and stings from insects. Yes we do have a bed bug problem in New York City. The dynamic duo (Rick and I!) will be beekeepers by the time summer begins. In order to prepare for our courses we are doing much reading about our bees. I am doing research on stings and bites. Neither of us want to get stung, but we will get stung. That is for sure. I will make sure we each have headgear with netting so we do not get stung in the face. There are herbs to stop the itching and swelling. The minor bites from mosquitoes and other insects respond quickly to herbal oils. If you have fresh or dry lavender flowers available that works well. However it is not what I carry around in my bag. In preparation for the summer I will make an Herbal First Aid Kit. I think everyone should have one at home.
Insect Bite Oil:
1. 1 teaspoon of lavender essential oil
2. 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Directions: Combine the two oils. Dab the mixture directly on the bite. Store in a bottle or glass container. Put a tight lid on it. Label the bottle. Keep this mixture away from small children and away from the eyes.
Bite and Sting Poultice:
This mixture is called a poultice. A poultice is a hot, soft, moist mass, as of flour, herbs, mustard, etc., sometimes spread on cloth, applied to a sore or inflamed part of the body
Let's make one:
1. 1 tablespoon of echinacea root tincture
2. 1 tablespoon of distilled water
3. 1/8 teaspoon of lavender essential oil
4. 1 tablespoon of bentonite clay
Directions: Combine all the liquid ingredients together. Add this mixture to the clay
The paste should be tacky enough to apply to the skin. Apply to the bite and then store remaining in a labeled glass container. Be sure the lid is tight. You do not want the mixture to dry out. Mine did, so I added a little bit more distilled water.
I remember my Poppy putting mud and some oil in a bowl and applying it to a bee sting on my left leg when I was younger. I wonder where he learned to do this. An old Italian custom? Before you apply this poultice to the bite, look at yourself in the mirror. See if the area of the bite is reddened, swollen or puffy. Make sure you do not have shortness of breath. Seek medical attention if there is any possibility of allergy to the bite or sting.
These are just two of many items for your herbal first aid kit.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Dear Friends and Associates,
I WANTED TO SHARE IT WITH YOU. Since our we all share such a love of herbs, gardening, farming, and most importantly cooking, and eating. We all share beautiful healthily locally and self grown food from our own gardens. This Food Bill will seriously effect our access to healthy locally or self grown food as well as access to supplements.
I hope each of you will read the below and use the link to call and email your senators as the vote could be as early as Monday and no later than Friday.
Please pass this on to as many friends as possible Thank you for your support I hope this finds you all well.
Be your own health advocate. Please support
Urgent: Stop the misnamed “food safety bill“
The Food Safety Bill: S.510
Why should you care? Our access to buying organic locally grown food from farmers, farmers markets and growing food in our own backyards is at risk. Also at risk is our access to natural supplements. Yes I said NATURAL SUPPLEMENTS
Why you need to act immediately? Congress is voting this week, on the “The Food Safety Bill S.510” which will impact our ability to grow any food on our property as well as access to food grown by local farmers and access to healthy supplements.
This is urgent: Congress is voting on this bill this week so thje sooner you act , the better the chance to STOP IT> Currently this Bill is uncontested in Congress. Please email and call your Senator at least once if not daily or twice daily.Please click on the link below to register your objection to Bill S.510.
Take action! http://salsa.democracyinaction.org/o/568/p/dia/action/public/?action_KEY=4613
Could you be affected ? Yes
How will we all be effected?
Home Gardens: If this bill is passed, the government can exercise control over what you grow in your backyard, in a container on your patio or on your fire escape. Your right to grow that tomato plant or that bunch of basil could be illegal. It takes agriculture and food, which are the cornerstone of all economies, out of the hands of citizens.
Choice: If S.510 is passed, your food choices for what you purchase and where you buy your food will be limited by government enforced laws. Local farmers and growers, farm stands, farmer’s markets, and grocers will face the possibility of exorbitant certification fees that will limit their ability to exist. This bill will allow the government to regulate our produce and seed variety choices.
Seeds: Farmers, local growers and household gardeners will be forced to use government certified seeds, which will most likely be genetically modified seeds. The harvesting or gathering of non - government certified seeds would be illegal. This means goodbye to the growing, buying and selling of heirloom tomatoes or heritage varieties and most vegetables of any kind.
Food Supplements: The Food Safety Bill will place limitations and have a profound affect on food supplements. In affect, the government is intending to control natural food supplements by stipulating a grand total of 18 nutrients as fit for consumption in dietary supplements. This will seriously limit our access to health related natural supplements.
PLEASE SHARE THIS EMAIL WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY
A truly rich man is one whose children run into his arms when his hands are empty. ~Author Unknown
How many fathers can say the above is true? It is true for me. I wouldn't say it was always this way. As a father whose children's home was not conventional I wanted to compensate. And overcompensate. Any child of a diverse home or rather the terminology " broken home " will be over compensated by one or both of the parents. Where does the term " broken home" come from ? It sounds awful to speak those words. It is almost like whispering the word " Cancer" in the Neil Simon play, 'Lost in Yonkers' Early in the separation I over compensated for everything in my life. I was at a loss. I wanted no one in my life to want for anything. I literally 'bought ' relationships - I couldn't go into a store a buy myself something just for me, without feeling guilty by the other individual involved if I didn't buy them something also. I gently look back at the past and smirk. Why do we as individuals do these things to ourselves ?
As my own children got older they began to see some reality. They allowed me to see what I was allowing others to do to me. Yet, I allowed this to happen. Any individual must look at a situation and ask " What was my role in this situation" I have careful looked at my role. I now understand it and Move On. The children guided the parent. How fortunate I was. Today I am a grateful father. The role is still parent-child but hopefully friends. It does make an enormous difference when your life partner is also a friend to your children. Respect and trust is key. No--communciation is the key. Do you truly communicate with your children? Can your children talk to you about anything ?
Once in a while you might find a child to take herbal medicine. The other night my son ( age 20 ) took a tincture of yarrow and chapparal. If you have ever tasted chapparal--it is nasty, but works wonderful 'magic' for infections. As a child he wouldn't take anything. I would have to create some sort of game or challenge for him to even take cough syrup. As a father who happens to be a doctor I understand the difficulties parents have with medications as well as dietary changes. Do you remember your parents giving you whiskey for your toothache ? I know parents want to give alcohol free tinctures to their children which are called glycerin based. I do not think this is a must. There is not enough alcohol in a tincture to disturb the child.
For your child's toothache give them a tea of catnip. yes , I said catnip. I dockered it up with wild flower honey, lemon balm and spearmint. My son liked the taste I think it was the wildflower honey.
I recommend reading " Herbal Treatment of Children" by Anne McIntyre. I thoroughly enjoyed Ms. McIntyre approach in discussing both the Western and Ayurvedic Perspectives. In you want to make an herbal formula for your kids also consult any of Rosemary Gladstar's books. I used her Herbal Medicinal Preparation(1989) as a guide for treating my children.
Dedicated to my children
From album " Sweet Dreams" Michael Ferreri
Goodnight, my angel
Time to close your eyes
And save these questions for another day
I think I know what you've been asking me
I think you know what I've been trying to say
I promised I would never leave you
And you should always know
Wherever you may go
No matter where you are
I never will be far away
Goodnight, my angel
Now it's time to sleep
And still so many things I want to say
Remember all the songs you sang for me
When we went sailing on an emerald bay
And like a boat out on the ocean
I'm rocking you to sleep
The water's dark
And deep inside this ancient heart
[ From: http://www.metrolyrics.com/lullabye-lyrics-billy-joel.html ]
You'll always be a part of me
Goodnight, my angel
Now it's time to dream
And dream how wonderful your life will be
Someday your child may cry
And if you sing this lullabye
Then in your heart
There will always be a part of me
Someday we'll all be gone
But lullabyes go on and on...
They never die
That's how you
TOP: Recent June 12, 2010 at my 50th
The REST: In my archives for good memories
Monday, November 15, 2010
" FRIENDSHIP IS LIKE A BANK ACCOUNT. YOU CANNOT CONTINUE TO DRAW ON IT WITHOUT MAKING ANY DEPOSITS."
How true is this statement. I have never thought of it this way but it makes sense. I do think I was the individual always drawing and not making any deposits. However, reflecting back I know many individuals in my life who were drawing on my bank account and not making any deposits. I know recognize that those individuals were never really my friends--only acquaintances or passing by at that time of my life. I allowed many to draw without deposits. I enabled this to happen. I played a role. I did not recognize it at that moment, but it did happen. And when I did recognize it I often many times overlooked it. This even happened with a former life partner and family. Did you ever get in a situation that you know is incorrect, but do not know the solution out of the problem ? Did you ever get into a relationship that you knew was over after 2 years but it lasted longer ? Did you ever not even get a thanks or how are you from a friend or family member? We all have had this happen ! If this has not happened to you , then you haven't even recognized it yet or do not wan t to see the truth which is painful. Life is painful. But it is life on life's terms.
Yesterday I did not blog - It is progress not perfection. I wanted to do something self- esteem able for me. I wanted to finish knitting myself a wool hat. And that I did !
Hopefully on the weekend you made your infused oils. Next weekend we will make salves from the infused oils.
Gastrointestinal health is a major concern. The "gut" is the basis of good health. If we have a clean gut we are healthy. I do not mean a clean large intestine or colon. I mean a clean small intestine. There are many ways to ensure good gut health. First is the dietary lifestyle change you must make. There must be less acidic foods ( as tomatoes, eggplants,peppers, high glycemic(sugar) fruits, less no no cow's dairy and less red meat. Your dietary lifestyle needs to be rich in fruit and vegetables of the season and low glycemic. Some low glycemic fruits include all the berries, apples, kiwi and pears. Your diet needs to be high in green leafy vegetables. This is beond the salad every day. There needs to be broccoli, kale, spinach and brussel sprouts. Add some cabbage.
You must fortify your GI ( gastrointestinal tract) which enhances the ability for nutrients from food and supplements to be optimally absorbed. If you do not have a healthy gut you will not have wellness in other areas of the body. This is called Leaky Gut Syndrome. There are many causes of leaky gut the most important being food all;ergies, especially wheat and dairy. the other causes are yeast, chronic infections and heavy metal intoxication in the body. The symptoms range from mild to severe. Severe symptoms include bloating, cramping, loose stools and flatulence ( gas). Other symptoms include abdominal pain, nervousness, depression, insomnia , foggy thinking, recurrent infections and even skin rashes. This is because the gut produces serotonin ( a happy neurotransmitter) which is sent to the brain. A leaky gut will have less erotonoin thus mood swings, anxiety and insomnia. Refer to March 2010 blogs about Anxiety and Your Gut, Insomnia and Your Gut and Focus and Your Gut.
I have found the combination of nutrients and botanical help soothe colonic irritation. I utilize the amino acid, L-glutamine as well as the good bacteria, also known as probiotics. Insufficient glutamine can present with atrophy, ulceration and necrosis of the colon lining. It is so important to take sufficient amounts of glutamine. Since absorption is a problem, the L-glutamine must be taken in powdered form
Other nutrients and botanicals I utilize are:
1. Deglycyrrhizinated licorice ( DGL)
2. Marshmellow leaf and root - in tincture 1/2 dropperful 2 x day
3. Meadowsweet leaf and root - in tincture 1/2 dropperful 2 x day
4. Berberine - many plants contain this yellow beneficial compound
5. Cabbage juice - fresh juicing
6. Phosphatidylcholine ( PC) powder or gel caps ( i prefer the powder mixed with the L-glutamine and probioitcs)
Diet is essential. Do not do all of the above herbs if you have no intention to change your dietary lifestyle. CONSULT YOUR HEALTH CARE PRACTITIONER ABOUT USE OF HERBS
Saturday, November 13, 2010
" TO BE AT PEACE IN ANY ENDEAVOR, WE MUST RELEASE OUR NEED TO CONTROL THE OUTCOME ' - Diane Dreher
Who doesn't want control ? I would rather not control the situation and let things happen as they may or as my highger power would want them to. Some people have a need to conrtol every situation. In my humble opinion, these 'folks' are never at peace. This summer I sat back and watched people take control. I cannot even describe the chaos. I teach so I always hear myself talk. Sometimes I do not like to hear myself. People who like to take control--always and I mean always like to hear themselves TALK> Those get a high from taking control. I yearn for peace. Peace comes from within myself. I have released the need to control any situation long time ago. I did that with volunteering and I am free. I am happy joyous and free. I also pray for those who always want control or need it as it has been studied that their own life span decreases with this control or power. Do you always want to take control?
Do you yearn to be at peace ?
More than 5 million people have Alzheimer's Disaese (AD) in the United States. It is ranked as the 6th leading cause of death. AD destroys brain cells causing major memory loss. Studies show that genetics play role, but i feel dietary lifestyle tugs on the rope which starts the process. From the first diagnosis made in 1906 by German Physician, Alois Alzheimer, the progression of the disease is shattering to the family despite all our technological advancement. Of course we have had advancement with this disease. We have MRI, CT, and PET scans where we can see tangles and/or plaques. We have new medications. Let's go back to the basics: dietary changes, exercise changes, proper sleep, proper hydration and avoiding environmental toxins as mercury, lead, and aluminum.
I utilize vitamins and supplements in patients with AD. I utilize fish oils ( higher DHA versus EPA), phosphatidyl choline, phosphatidyl serine, acetyl L - carnitine,
prevagen, and herbs. The herbs are from the vinca plant . I utilize vinpocetine. I also use high dose Vitamin D ( as I have for many years before it became so popular), niacinamide and EGCG ( frrom camiella- green tea) Studies have now been conducted on high dose tumeric. I have discussed Tumeric ( Curcuma longa ) in the past. It is a very useful antiinflammatory herb. Studies show curcumina has great potential for enhancing brain health. It is difficult for curcumin as well as other herbs to sustain high levels in the blood. Thanks to UCLA researchers and scientists we now have Longvida (R). It can not only enter the blood stream but can cross the blood brain barrier to be useful in patients with AD.
The three other essential nutrients are:
1. Green Tea ( high dose EGCG) - Gforce ( www.longevitynutritionals.com)
2. Vitamin D3 - I prefer liquid to achieve higher levels
3. Nicotinamide ( a form of Vitamin B3)
Other herbs that feed our brains:
4. Gotu kola
As promised I want to teach you all how to make an infused oil. It is not difficult at all. Any quality vegetable oil can be used. I prefer Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Some people use almond or sesame oil.
There are two methods to infuse oils: 1. solar ( sun) infused oil or 2. Double Boiler method
I prefer the sun method. There is still sun today. Place your herb of choice and the oil in a glass container. Place in a warm sunny spot and let sit for two weeks. Strain the oil through a cheesecloth. Squeeze every bit of oil out of the herb. Then add a fresh piece of the herb to the oil bottle. Let that sit for an additional 2 weeks.
If you start next week you can have infused oils ready for Christmas gifts.
So we do not have sun. Buy a double boiler ( a pot within a pot) Place both oil and herb int he top pan . Water int he lower pan Slowly heat for 30 minutes DO NOT BOIL THE WATER. Strain the herb through a cheesecloth as above. You are done. Some herbalists then place in a refrigerator. I do not.
Friday, November 12, 2010
" You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest, that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the PRESENT. " - Jan Glidewell
I always have said look at the past with a glance Do not dwell on the past. Do not project into the future - as your expectation of the future might be busted. Live in the PRESENT. It is a Day at a Time. Sometimes for some of us it is an hour at a time, and for others a minute at a time. Then, if you a Broadway Diva , " It Only Takes a Moment"--and it is a moment at a time. It would be so sad to miss what is happening in the present because you are too tightly clutching the past. I know this happens when a loved one passes on. I know because I have no biological parents alive. I say biological because I have 'parents' whom I love. Yesterday I glanced at the past as it was Veterans' Day. I thought of my Dad and my Uncle Joe. I could close my eyes and remember running in the yard at 75 Morsemere Ave in Yonkers. My aunt Mary , Uncle Joe and Regina lived there. I actually could picture in my mind where all the bushes, trees and flowers were planted. Our mind can recall many things of the past. Just do not dwell on it. What do you dwell on in the past ? Is the past blocking your ability to see what is in front of you-- The Present.
Live for today. I have always heard Live each day to the fullest as if it were your last day on Earth.
Who wants to feel pretty? Certainly I want to feel handsome, debonair and sleek. I do love Malone and Cummings sprayed on my skin. I want Tracie Martyn creams and 'potions' on my face but I have learned through others some natural skin care recipes. A woman, renowned herbalist, Rosemary Gladstar makes what I love so much easier. What do I love ? Plants , flowers and herbs. Go and buy Rosemary Gladstar's Family Herbal. Pick a weekend and Go Herbal. I agree with her, be creative and enjoy the process. Invite someone to create with you. Rick and I are waiting for an off weekend. She has the most unique cleansing grain. You cannot just buy it. YOU have to make it. Some of the facial cleanser are too harsh for me. Believe me I spend ( or rather Rick does) a lot of facial products. We all do.
This is Miracle Grains ( from Rosemary)
1. 2 cups of white clay
2. 1 cup of finely ground oats
3. 1/4 cup of finely ground almonds
4. 1/8 cup of poppy seeds or finely ground blue corn
( I didn't like the above either-- I added ground chamomille flowers)
5. 1/8 cup finely ground roses
Make into a paste and mixing together . Gently apply this to your face and neck. Rinse off in warm water. Feel the smoothness. Look at your glow. If you want it smoother and you are the sleek kind of guy or gal --add honey. No it will not make your face sticky. We are NOT using clove honey in the glass teddy bear jar. I am using Wild Flower Honey or support your local honey from your local beekeeper.
Be inventive - try adding an essential oil of your choice . It must an essential oil not synthetic.
This is your make and create weekend. Get ready
When I am in a field, or examining a flower I Know It is Right---
ONCE IN A LIFETIME
Just once in a lifetime
A man knows a moment
One wonderful moment
When fate takes his hand
And this is my moment
My once in a lifetime
When i can explore
A new and exciting land
For once in my lifetime
I feel like a giant
I soar like an eagle
As tho' i had wings
For this is my moment
My destiny calls me
And tho' it may be
Just once in my lifetime
I'm going to do great things
The photograph above is a Needlepoint created for my Rick. It is the name of our store " Simply Green" which opened in 2008 in Cherry Grove Fire island. It was a success for us. It was an honor once again to be working side by side with Rick. Gregory did plenty of sales. Unfortunately the community is not ready to Be Green yet. There is no reason why YOU cannot be green. GO SIMPLY GREEN. Thank you, Rick
Thursday, November 11, 2010
~ Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul. ~
Michel de Montaigne
Can two women, veterans and a flower be linked ? Of course it can with a single Red Poppy Poppies are used to honor both Veterans' Day and Memorial Day but it more often linked with the latter. It all started with a written poem. The written word is so powerful. Sometimes I feel more than the spoken word. In WWI, a Canadian colonel, John McRae wrote " In Flander Fields" In the poem, Colonel McRae described the fallen soldiers on the Flander Battlefield. The Flander batterfields are located between Belgium and France. He described how poppies grow and bloomed among the rows and rows of graves. We then needed two women to take the initiative. These two women, Anna Guerin and Moina Michael worked to sell artificial poppies for the WWI cause. Today, their initiative still continues.
I often wonder the Poppy was selected. It is a beautiful flower. It is true that in war a soldier will have heightened stress thus epinephrine ( adrenaline) will be higher. Poppy does relieve tension and stress. So does Valerian which according to an Italian study was used as a tincture by the British during the WWII bombing of London.
I must prepare your immune system to get better. Do you ? During this time of the year, each of us get stressed over the upcoming Holidays. These are the 3 deadly sins: Thanksgiving, Christmas ( Hanukkah ) and New Years. What stress do you have during this time of the year? Family stress? Who is cooking? What to buy as gifts?
Here is your immune tincture to help you:
1/2 teaspoon of the following:
2. Siberian ginseng ( Eleuroococcus)
3. Asragalus Root
4. Licorice Root
Mix together and drink this twice a day from now until 4 weeks. This will prepare your immune system right before 2011.
The photographs above are the USS Monterey. Four young men were together
1. Pat Fratellone
2. Joseph Maimoni
3. Michael Hudak
4. Gerald Ford
All four are looking down from their ship in the sky...