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Clean eating, raw food, paleo, and, I‘d imagine, quite a lot of other such diets and lifestyles   seem to be everywhere nowadays; whether it is a friend telling you that you just “have to do  this, because…”, or whether it is in twitter, facebook, and tabloid “science updates”. Of  course, the most irritating one of these is the ‘Instagram diet’, which can be best described  as a lifestyle based on taking a photo of your best looking dishes- usually involving an  avocado- and posting it online for your followers to admire; a preferable lifestyle option for  C-list celebrities.   It seems you cannot open a newspaper, tabloid, or magazine, look at your twitter feed, or  open facebook without someone having posted a story on what to eat to not die, what not to  eat because you will die, which superfoods to add to your meal to…well…live longer,  healthier, better, and stronger, and how to prevent getting old and/or getting Alzheimer’s by  adjusting your diet (if you have followed other advice, otherwise you would have died well  before this would have become an issue). Even though some of this is more or less (well no, it is actually) made up, many of this advice  seems to be grounded in ridiculous over-interpretation of epidemiological evidence. Very  often this is also the result of absurd extrapolation of results from studies in cells or animals  to humans. Some of the ingredients in, say, the avocado, may contain a nutrient which was  measured in a cell line to have some anti-cancer properties in situ. Indeed, cancer is usually  the target of this type of “nutritional advice”. It is always best to link this type of advice to a  disease with a complex aetiology and that may occur sometime for away in the future  because, if it was some acute effect (say a poisoning) it would be easy to check, wouldn’t it.  Also, it should be something people really worry about: cancer and Alzheimer’s disease are  good candidates in that respect, for obvious reasons. Before going on, I would like to emphasize here that I don’t have a problem with nutritional  epidemiology, or with dietary or nutritional advice; there are some great studies out there, as  well as some good advice. The following just serves as an illustration about the nonsense this can result in when some of  the worse, clickbait-type, advice is taken literally…  …that, and assuming you make it all the way to the end, you can also make a great meal for  family and friends! So, I have taken one of my favourite recipes, which is also not overly complicated, and went  on an internet hunt for the supposed health benefits and risks for all the ingredients (and yes,  I do most of the cooking at home…). Subsequently, I have re-written the recipe to  demonstrate how great my chosen recipe is.  A meal to (never) die for       List of ingredients (3-4 people): 2 tablespoons of an anti-inflammatory sauce with additional benefits on genes linked  to cancer. This is supplemented with beneficial fatty acids, vitamins E and K, and  loaded with anti-oxidants; the latter are biologically active and help fight serious  diseases, including heart disease and stroke. The sauce also does not cause weight  gain and obesity, and may help to fight Alzheimer’s Disease (I know, told you!),  rheumatoid arthritis, and type 2 Diabetes. Did I mention it has anti-cancer properties?  It has the added benefit of having anti-bacterial properties. [source] Two units of an anti-microbial plant, which regulates your blood sugar, improves your  bone health (effectively preventing the development of osteoporosis), and prevents  cancer. Unfortunately, it can lead to bad breath and unpleasant body odour, and can  cause bloating, cramping and diarrhoea, as well as eye and mouth irritation. More  seriously, one can also develop an intolerance and allergy.  So this is the dare-devil in me…adding this to my food! [source] 1 tablespoon of an anti-cough medicine, which also lowers the blood pressure, and  boosts the immune system. In fact, any leftovers can be used as a disinfectant to rid  the home of dangerous air pollutants. It also improves your mood, but as a downside:  it is also used in pesticides. Oh, this needs to be chopped. [source] One large pinch of a pain killer, which also fights inflammation while simultaneously  reducing blood cholesterol, triglyceride levels, and platelet aggregation and  increasing the body’s ability to dissolve fibrin (so the cardiovascular benefits are off  the scale!). If that is not enough already, it clears congestion, boosts immunity, but  also stops the spread of prostate cancer! It prevents stomach ulcers, helps you to lose  weight, and lowers your risk of Type 2 Diabetes.  [source] 75ml of a, and I quote, “cure-all”. In fact, it has been credited with helping the  Roman army succeed. It helps soldiers to survive battle as well as alien climates  encountered during campaigns. Quite a surprise that this is not a part of every meal  really. This cure-all is also loaded with anti-ageing antioxidants, is cholesterol free,  sodium free, and fat free. Without doubt it helps preventing heart disease, including  lowering of cholesterol, and cancer.   [source]   1 tablespoon of a powder that provides energy, lowers blood pressure, improves brain  functions, treats depression and heals wounds. However, this is a dangerous  substance, and should only be consumed in moderation! It is associated with obesity,  diabetes, dementia, cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s  disease, increase blood glucose level, kidney ailments, gout, heart problems,  hyperactivity, cancer and cavities. So this is bad stuff, and despite its benefits you  may want to see if you can find a replacement for this….or just live dangerously.   [source] 200 ml of special liquid which is mineralizing, alkalizing, and can help repair the gut  lining which eases joint pain, inflammation, eczema, digestive issues, prevents  cellulite, and builds strong bones, hair and nails. [source]  Crumble 100 grams of a medicine that improves heart health, fights arthritis,  prevents osteoporosis, enhances memory, boosts the immune system, has anti-  cellulite and anti-inflammatory properties, and improves your dental health. [source]  Importantly, this is a superfood-based meal, so chop 200 grams of a low-calorie, high-fiber, zero-fat vegetable, which is also high in iron and vitamin K, and filled with  antioxidants. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, lowers cholesterol levels, helps  your visions and supports your immune system. High in calcium, it also prevents  osteoporosis and maintains a healthy metabolism. Oh, and it detoxes the body  (excellent, whatever that is). [source]  And finally, the above is all supplemented by 400 grams of carbohydrates; the primary  fuel source of your body, including a lot of fibers, which help fight chronic diseases,  including obesity and Type 2 Diabetes, and promotes digestive health. The selenium in it protects your cells from molecular damage, while manganese, also included,  regulates your blood sugar. [source] So all in all, this is quite epic. But the benefits do not just stop here! No, further health  benefits result from non-included ingredients!  You may have noticed that this recipe includes no meat. Vegetarianism it turns out wards of  disease, helps keep your weight down, increases the length of life, builds strong bones,  reduces your risk of food-borne illnesses, eases the symptoms of menopause, increases your  energy, reduces the likelihood of constipation, haemorrhoids and diverticulitis, and does not  include toxic chemicals. It is also better for the environment, helps reduce famine, and you  will spare animals. [source]  So, we now have all the ingredients, and feel a lot better and healthier already. If I eat this  regularly, which I actually do, it is highly unlikely I will die in the near future (ignoring the  probability of an accident). I mean, I am protected from cancer, Type 2 Diabetes, obesity,  osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s disease, microbial infection, and many others things. Although not  very likely, I will probably not find myself on the battlefield in the near future; but if I do, I  definitely have an edge on any of my enemies (so be warned if you were to critique this blog  post; just saying….). …that’s pretty re-assuring. I am practically immortal… *
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Serving the community with a smile.......... ................in a Public Healthy kind of way
A meal to (never) die for
Oh right, you were curious about the recipe itself?  Step 1: Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add the onions, thyme  and some seasoning. Sauté for 10 mins until softened, then add the chilli  flakes, vinegar, sugar and stock. Increase the heat and cook for another  10 mins. Step 2: Meanwhile, boil a large pan of water, add some salt and  cook the spaghetti following pack instructions, adding the kale for the  final 4 mins of cooking. Drain and return to the pot with a little of the  cooking water. Tip in the onion mixture and half the cheese, and toss  together. Serve topped with the remaining cheese. Spaghetti with caramelised onion, kale & Gorgonzola. The recipe can be  found here:   https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2865698/spaghetti-with-  caramelised-onion-kale-and-gorgonzo Enjoy your next dinner!