Thankful day

thankful

I brought some beautiful organic vegetables from the market in the weekend, freshly picked and beautiful looking too.

As I was cooking them today I was thinking about the grower and I thanked them out loud as I prepared the wonderful food.

Thanked them for growing the beautiful produce, for choosing to grow organic, for becoming certified, for taking the time and the care to grow amazing nutrient dense food.

Then as I went about my day I thanked others out loud – producers of natural sustainable products I use, the people who choose to sell these products, organic farmers, people who are doing their bit to make the world a better place.

It was such a nice practice and made me realise all the wonderful people and the things they are doing for us and the planet.  It’s sometimes easy to get caught up in the doom & gloom but take the time to think of those creating positive change in the world. Thank them as you think about them, thank them in person or in email, or thank them on social media. Show your appreciation for what they are doing or creating.

Let me know in th comments below Who do you have to thank today?

With gratitude

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Food Matters film free online last day!

This is a fantastic film if you haven’t seen it already be quick

Organic Agriculture energy efficient

‘ The Cardiff researchers found that on average the organic production of raw food required 67% less energy than conventional methods of agriculture.  The argument that organic farming could not produce enough food is often brought up by the manufacturers who, unsurprisingly, want the world to stick to chemical agriculture and to use genetically engineered crops – especially those engineered to have a longer shelf life and to look attractive on the supermarket shelves.  But a paper from the College of Natural Resources at the University of California at Berkeley cites the results of many trials in various countries demonstrating that , in practice, organic farming yields are comparable with those from conventional chemical agriculture, so it seems likely that organic farming could provide enough food.’

An excerpt from Time to eat the dog – The real guide to sustainable living

Seasonal Eating for the end of Summer

 

In the southern hemisphere we are enjoying summer.  All the holiday celebrations can be hard on your liver. Crucerferous veges such as brocoli, sprouts and cabbage benefit the liver.  Watercress, fresh fruits, beetroot, garlic, bitter veges and green tea will also benefit liver detox pathways.

Some fantastic foods which are in season at the moment and I’ve been enjoying are.

 

Asparagus

– A natural diuretic which is great if you suffer from fluid retention

-Rich in folate, vit E, vit C. Folate helps carry carbon around the body, this mechanism constantly repairs DNA.

 

Avocado

– Provides nearly 20 essential nutrients including fibre, potassium, vit E, folate.  The good fats in Avos act as a nutrient booster helping the body absorb fat soluable nutrients such as beta carotene and lutein.

 

Kale

– Rich in sulphur – containing phytonutrients which research indicates have the capacity to help fight cancer. Great source of beta carotene and calcium

 

Watercress

– Contains iron, calcium, folic acid, vit A, vit C and iodine. Best eaten in its natural state fresh and crisp.

 

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Let me know in the comments below what you are enjoying eating this season? If it’s not summer where you are let me know which season you are in.

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Superfoods for arthritis

Apples

Contain anti-inflammatory antioxidants and bone-friendly boron and magnesium.  Eating 100g of apple provides the same antioxidant benefits for inflamed joints as 1500mg vitamin c.  Wash but don’t peel your apples the antioxidants are five times more concentrated in the skin than the flesh.

Avocado

Contains antioxidant monounsaturated oils, essential fatty acids, beta-sitosterol and vitamin E. Avocado can suppress joint inflammation by reducing production of inflammatory substances.  It promotes cartilage repair in osteoarthritis by stimulating the activity of bone-building cells and cartilage cells.

Brazil Nuts

The richest dietary source of selenium – a single Brazil nut contains around 50mcg.  Selenium improves the quality of cartilage proteins. Also good source of magnesium and sulphur.  People with the highest dietary intake of selenium are least likely to develop osteoarthritis.  Each increase of 0.1 parts per million of selenium in your toenail clippings ( a good indicator of selenium status) lowers your risk of knee osteoarthritis by 20 percent.

Chilli peppers

Contains substances called capsaicin and dihydrocapsaicin.  Capsaicin and dihydrocapsaicin block transmission of pain messages.  They also trigger the release of endorphins – the brains own morphine-like painkillers.  Capsaicin is used in clinical trials as a long acting analgesic to treat post-surgical and osteoarthritis pain – a single injection at the site of pain acts for several months.

Curry powder spices

For example, anise, chilli, cloves, cumin, fennel, ginger, mustard and turmeric. Curry spices have an anti-inflammatory, pain killing action that helps to alleviate joint symptoms.  Mustard isothiocyanates reduce inflammation in a similar way to aspirin.  Turmeric and ginger contain curcumin, which may reduce cartilage destruction in osteoarthritis, and prevent the onset of rheumatoid arthritis.

Dark green leafy vegetables

For example broccoli, spinach, spring greens, dark green cabbage and parsley.  These vegetables supply antioxidant carotenoids, vitamin C, calcium and magnesium. A high antioxidant diet is good for arthritis.  Sixty-one percent of the bone-friendly calcium  found in broccoli is absorbed from the gut, compared to 32 percent of calcium in milk. Inliven contains broccoli, spinach and cabbage and Deep green contains kale, collard greens and lots of grass juices.

Dark blue-red pigmented fruits

For example cherries, grapes, blueberries, bilberries, dark raspberries and elderberries.  These contain antioxidant anthocyanins which lower levels of inflammatory chemicals in the body.  Eating 250g of black cherries daily can lower uric acid levels enough to prevent gout.  Drinking a glass of red grape juice has an antioxidant action that lasts for two hours after ingestion. As the name suggests Berry Radical has a variety of berries packed in, including acai berry, raspberry, blueberry, strawberry.

Garlic

Contains beneficial substances such as allicin.  A Russian study has shown that people with rheumatoid arthritis can benefit from increasing the amount of garlic they eat.

Grapefruit

Contains vitamin C and antioxidant bioflavonoids.  Red grapefruit has a higher antioxidant content than yellow grapefruit.  Grapefruit helps to reduce inflammation, strengthen cartilage and block prostaglandins (substances involved in pain).  It increase the anti-inflammatory effect of some painkillers.  Eating grapefruit regularly improves symptoms in some people with rheumatoid and other forms of inflammatory arthritis.

Macadamia nuts

The richest food source of monounsaturated fatty acids and an excellent source of vitamin E and selenium.  The antioxidant action reduces inflammation in arthritis.  The nuts are being used in a trial to reduce the risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Cathedral Cove Macadamias has a great range of macadamia products.

Oily fish

A rich source of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA).  A large analysis of 17 studies assessing the pain-relieving effects of omega-3 fatty acids in rheumatoid and other autoimmune forms of arthritis showed they significantly reduce joint pain and intensity, the duration of morning stiffness, the number of painful joints and the need to take NSAID painkillers – all within three to four months.

Olive oil

A rich source of monounsaturated fats and antioxidant, anti-inflammatory substances.  Increased olive oil consumption is associated with a reduced risk of rheumatoid arthritis and cardiovascular disease.  Olive oil may protect against the development of osteoarthritis.

Onions

A rich source of quercetin – an antioxidant bioflavonoid that suppresses the production of inflammatory substances.  Red onions are particularly high in antioxidants.  Quercetin binds to cartilage and strengthens its structure. As an antioxidant it mops up free radicals within joints and reduces the release of protein-degrading enzymes.

Pomegranate

A rich source of antioxidant polyphenols, anthocyanins, vitamins C and E and carotenoids.  Just one of the fantastic ingredients in Berry Radical. Its antioxidant potential is two or three times higher than that of red wine and green tea.  Ellagic acid in pomegranate juice reduces inflammation by blocking activation of inflammatory substances that play a key role in cartilage degradation in osteoarthritis.

Red wine

A rich source of antioxidant polyphenols such as resveratrol.  Resveratrol blocks the release of inflammatory substances, which helps to reduce joint inflammation.

Teas

White, green, oolong and black tea contain high levels of antioxidant catechins, such as epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). EGCG inhibits the expression of inflammatory mediators in arthritic joints and helps to protect cartilage degradation in osteoarthritis.

Walnuts

A rich source of omega-3 fatty acids.  Omega-3 fatty acids have an anti-inflammatory action. Some research shows that eating walnuts daily can help alleviate the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis.

Yellow or orange fruit and vegetables

For example carrots, sweet potatoes, guava, mango and pumpkin – these are all rich sources of vitamin C and antioxidant carotenoids.  Fruit and vegetables with high antioxidant content can reduce pain and inflammation in all types of arthritis.

Yogurt (live)

Contains probiotic bacteria. Probiotic bacteria help to reduce the severity of joint inflammation.  They also reduce abnormal intestinal bacterial balance (dysbiosis) associated with ‘leakiness’ of the gut wall and food intolerance.  Inliven is packed full of probiotics or try the gluten-free Fast-tract which is even more abundant in the good bacteria.