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Don't Microwave It!

Broccoli, and many other colorful veggies, is known to be packed with cancer-fighting goodies.  But, in order to really benefit, you should break out your steamer instead of nuking it.

A study in Spain found that microwaving broccoli destroys 97 percent of it’s cancer-protective flavonoids. So steam it, eat it raw as a snack, or add it to soups and salads.

So many times we tricked into thinking we are doing something good when we are not.  The microwave turns beautifully healthy food into a pretty shell of it's former self!  So if you want your veggies to actually be good for you, keep them out of your microwave!

4 Easy Things You Should Plant Right Now

Research has shown that fruit and berries grown organically have much better vitamin and mineral content than store-bought. You and your health can immediately benefit from this fact by planting some fruits and berries in your back plot right now, or at least ordering them.  Here is an article and a study showing how much better organically grown (home-grown) can be for you.

You can order right now from a reputable plant nursery and they will deliver the plants to you at just the right time for planting during the season. Some things can be planted now, the rest can be made comfortable on your estate in the spring.

In no other way can you take control of what you and your family eat than by actually planting and growing your own food. Believe me, I'm pretty busy being a full-time , father, doctor, county commissioner; you do have time to do this!

As food prices continue to increase, it makes more and more sense to grow you own delicious healthy food.  Here are five choices that are easy, inexpensive and will soon help you give your family the food they love and deserve.
Buy one now!
1. Blueberry bushes - Very easy to plant and care for.  10 minutes of reading will make you a local expert on the care and growing of blueberries.  You will sometimes get a few blueberries the same year your plant, and will definitely get to eat some home-grown berries the second year.  With a little care, this bush will give your family tasty little blue packets of anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals for years to come.

Buy Some Now!
Get started now!
2. Raspberries - Very easy to plant and care for.  10 minutes of reading will make you an expert on this tasty berry.  You will be able to eat tasty berries the very first year you plant these beauties, and for years to come.  Each year, new brambles will sprout up around your first plant, giving you more berries each year for free!

3. Strawberries - Very easy to plant and care for.  5 minutes of reading will make you the neighborhood expert. These little garden friends will give you red, delicious berries the first year you plant them.  And, in the summer these plants send out little shoots that will make a new strawberry plant for free!  So your first purchase of strawberry plants could be you last.

Start with a few!
One or two?
4. Apple tree - Easy to plant and care for. Nothing gives such a sense of satisfaction as resting in the shade of a tree you planted.  These small trees are a little more challenging than their berry-cousins, but still quite easy for most folks.  Expect to enjoy your own home-grown apples 2-3 years after planting, and for decades to come.    As long as you only have a few trees there is very little work in caring for these pie-makers.

5. Peach tree - Fairly easy to plant and care for.  Few things in life are as succulent as the first bite if a sun-ripe peach.  A little reading and practice is all it takes to have a couple of productive peach trees in your back yard.  In 2 or 3 years you could be wowing your neighbors with fresh peaches. 

There are hundreds of YouTube videos on planting and caring fore these fruit and berry-making machines; most are enjoyable and some are hilarious!    With a little practice and patience, you will be providing your family tasty top-notch nutrition from your own back yard.  Home-grown fruit and berries are cheaper, and better for you, and the taste can't be beat.  I'll be posting pictures in the future of my own little fruit and berry producers.  You can go to our facebook page and post pictures of yours as well.  Happy planting.

Increase Your Growth (Repair) Hormone Naturally

Just a quick note to say what some may already know...  In my studies on Melatonin and Human Growth Hormone, I keep running across the expert opinion that taking Melatonin at bed-time and turning in between 9-10 pm causes a natural doubling in the amount of Growth Hormone one would have secreted otherwise.

Blood levels of Melatonin naturally decline as you age, this decline probably being at least one cause of insomnia as you get older.  I've just came across several studies that seem to bear out the opinion that bedtime Melatonin increases blood levels of Growth Hormone, and that make me much more confident in recommending to all my patients, that they start around 35-45 years of age, taking 1 to 3 mg of Melatonin at bedtime, and trying really heard to get to bed at a decent hour.  HGH, as you may know, is responsible for hundreds of good things in your body, from healing damage to keeping you as youthful as possible.  Wouldn't it be great if you could double your HGH levels simply by taking a completely safe and natural supplement and going to bed before the late show?

I have been doing both these things for about 6 months, and I'll have to admit I can see a subtle but real difference in my ability to be more fit and to heal, both physically and mentally.  You must understand, this confession comes begrudgingly from a formerly self-avowed night-owl!  For decades I prided myself on staying up really late; it was my prime quiet time to study and contemplate.  Now I will have to eat a little crow and admit to the wisdom of old Ben Franklin's saying that my grand-mother quoted to me often, " Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." 

Yeah, I know, Granny, I know...

Can You Speed Healing After Surgery?

Here is a study that seems to show what many of us suspected.  Ligament tears in the knee are the injury/surgery looked at in this study, and the results look quite promising.

     Click here to read the Study Abstract...

Here is the important part of the Abstract:
During this inflammatory challenge (injury/surgery), the peak isometric force increases after surgery were significantly lower in those with plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations <30 ng/mL compared with those with concentrations ≥30 ng/mL. The authors conclude that low vitamin D appears to hinder strength recovery after anterior cruciate ligament surgery and during inflammatory insult.
This makes perfect sense, considering  the biochemistry of Vitamin D.  It seems a very wise idea to recommend Vitamin D supplementation both before and after any surgical procedure to improve recovery time and repair.  Getting your Vitamin D level checked as part of the pre-op lab work-up also seems a wise decision.

This study does not prove that having a good Vitamin D level promotes healing, but it sure does seem to suggest it.  Supplementing Vitamin D in yourself or a loved one about to undergo any type of surgery, or after an injury, sounds like a very cheap and safe way to protect and heal tissue, with virtually no down-side.

A simple blood test can reveal your current Vitamin D level.  Has anyone had problems getting their Doc to order the test?  Do you know your Vitamin D level?

Oh, and for two weeks before and after surgery, DON'T SMOKE!  Sorry, had to throw that one in there.

Just a thought...

Are These Your Top Foods?

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
A Good Book
The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture keeps up with the foods eaten by Americans.  You would think with all the recent talk of eating healthier that they would be finding us eating much better; sorry, but that is not the case.  They recently listed the top nine food products, here they are:
  • Whole Cow's Milk
  • White Bread
  • Refined Sugar
  • 2 Percent Cow's Milk
  • White Flour
  • Soda, Primarily Colas    (seriously people? come on!)
  • Processed American Cheese
  • White Rolls
  • Ground Beef
So if you took all foods produced from Cows and Wheat off the market, the average American would starve to death; and, some research shows that soda is the Number One source of calories in the U.S.  These facts reveal just how bad our diet really is, and explains why well over half of us are overweight.  Let us start the trend, the revolution, that will begin to correct this unhealthy pattern in our country.  Let's make our top nine foods:
  • Vegetables (organic if possible)
  • Fruits (organic if possible)
  • Chicken (free-range if possible)
  • Tree Nuts and Seeds
  • Fish (not farm-raised)
  • Berries (grow your own!)
  • Almond/Coconut/Hemp Milk
  • Eggs (free-range if possible)
  • Stevia, Agave Nectar, Raw Honey
The Paleo Diet: Lose Weight and Get Healthy by Eating the Foods You Were Designed to Eat
The Way to Eat
You don't have to make all of these changes at once, but you do need to start today.  You are what you eat; computer programmers have a saying, "Garbage in, garbage out."  That saying also applies, I think, to the foods you put inside your body, and the bodies of your family.  The boring, day-to-day choices you make about your diet add up to the body and the health you will enjoy.

Some tidbits to remember, potatoes and ketchup are not vegetables, peanut butter is not a meat, peanuts are not nuts, and for my Southern friends, deep-fried farm-raised catfish is not a fish...

Feel free to forward this post to a friend who might be making wrong choices.