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Can we survive our food?

No matter what kind of resolutions you make, or intentions you have, diets you pursue, or hopes you have for natural health, Agribusiness and the food industry have corrupted our food supply. Your stomach is now in the hands of large corporations. They are in control. You'd have to go back 70 years to find unadulterated food. There is no guarantee that the foods we buy have any minerals or nutrients in them. You actually cannot trust the food you buy.


The Stomach source

We can count calories; eat any diet—raw foods, liquid foods, meat-only, macrobiotic foods, vegan foods, high fat, low fat, high carb, no carb; it makes no difference if your stomach isn’t able to process the food. In order to make your stomach the kind of neighborhood that friendly, hard working bacteria want to live in, you need to provide what they want. All eating must conform to this basic fact: if the stomach can't digest it, it's toxic to you. The way to nurture your stomach so that it can assimilate the food and produce nutrients is the first imperative. Without a working stomach, eating anything is a disaster in the making.

1) The first essential is FERMENTED FOOD. This is in line with the dictum that you should eat for the stomach and not for the mouth. Foods that the mouth wants are often the worst thing we can eat for the rest of the body.

Even though fermented foods are not the main portion of the dishes you eat, they must be included every day, or the stomach can't function. They are extremely important. The stomach asks for, and will demand, a continuous source of fermented food and/or fermented beverages. Most Americans are unaware of the importance of fermented foods since we lost the pickle jar and now eat only marinated pickles. Today Americans, except for beer, have no source of friendly flora, and no hope of escaping digestive problems. Without these vital probiotics to digest our foods, we would all die of diarrhea. There should be 10 times as many bacteria in the gut as cells in the human body. We should have billions of these tireless beneficial bacteria swarming around our bodies at all times for good health.

Miso Soup source


Other cultures have developed fermented foods, including miso, tempeh, kim-chi, cultured fish, salt and sour pickles, natto, and naturally brewed soy sauce. Every culture has one, if they intend to survive. We Americans have recently been experimenting with fermented drinks such as artisan beer, which is rich with brewer's yeast, and the cultured lactose in keffir, and --the centerpiece and queen of the fermented beverages-- Kombucha. This ancient fermented tea can reorganize the stomach to start working optimally, instantly. Best yet, you can easily brew it yourself at home once you have started with a SCOBY.

2) The next thing that the stomach needs to grow bacteria, and to sustain continuous energy for the body is WHOLE GRAINS. Enough whole grains to form a Ph neutral-acid media for bacteria to grow, and to provide B-vitamins. In the macrobiotic world, whole grains should constitute 60% of the plate—at least during the detox or healing process. George Oshawa chewed uncooked brown rice to cleanse his stomach.

3) Also essential for calcium, magnesium and other minerals are the leafy greens and vegetables to provide roughage and anti-oxidants. The greens we are talking about are NOT spinach or lettuce, the former high in acid-producing purines, and the latter, 99% water. The real greens are: collard greens, kale, mustard greens and broccoli (the highest in Vitamin A) and are which are essential to the immune system.

collard greens source

4) Last but not least, the body needs enough protein to repair tissue damage and provide heat. However, the high fat content of dairy and meat protein makes them repellent to the stomach, a nightmare to digest. Soy, in spite of its many benefits, is also impossible to digest, because of oxalic acids, so only cows can do it. It cannot be consumed as Tofu or soy milk or baby formula unless a cultured bacteria is used to digest them.

This is the greatest challenge to the vegetarian. Plant proteins and legumes are short of some necessary B vitamins, and only the addition of a fermented culture can release them from the plant in order to be assimilated into the bloodstream.

Tempeh source

One sure-fire way to increase the protein levels in a vegan or high-carb diet is to eat TEMPEH, a culture that can be added to soy or rice or beans to make them digestible and release proteins, B-12 and other important B-vitamins, as well as Calcium-magnesium into the bloodstream. Tempeh rivals beef and pork for proteins and B-vitamins without the fat or other problems these foods create. Tempeh may be the perfect protein.

Can you trust your supermarket?

No matter what kind of resolutions you make, or intentions you have, our modern agriculture and food-processing plants have removed the control of your food and put it in the hands of large corporations. Take back control!

The cereal isle source

It's a question of availability and quality, not the lack of food. Most communities in the U.S. are health-deserts, where you have to get healthy food as a specialty, if you can find it all all. The foods we eat are tasteless and void of their natural ingredients, and are designed to have a longer shelf-life than actually sustain life. Monsanto, General Foods and Nestlés are gigantic cartels whose aim it is to monopolize the food supply and make profits off of our hunger. Most Americans have lost their ability to even appreciate fresh, healthy foods, since they have so seldom been able to find them. The cities are overflowing with restaurants, true, but they mostly provide only rich, audaciously fatty foods and we microwave frozen foods at home. The heart must eventually succumb to death by rancid fat.

heart attack
The heart source

Yet farmers and rural populations now have the worst diets, not the best, in spite of their proximity to fresh food and whole grains, which they export. Ironically, the local WalMart mega store is probably their go-to source of food, and obesity is rampant in the country.

The dislocation from our food supply is causing us to forget what a healthy body actually feels like. We have grown accustomed to living with our chronic problems and recurring infections as a fact of life, a gloomy secret, or a growing anxiety.

Dieting is a multi-billion dollar industry. The medical establishment is no better. They can only tell us to stop eating, exclude foods, when there is no alternative. No sugar, no meat, no booze, no snacks, no drugs, no coffee, no tobacco, no, no, no. It's an endless stream of bitter pills we have to swallow--knowing full well that we sustain it every day for the rest of our lives. But if we DID have basically sound and healthy bodies, we could indulge (not gorge) on bad habits or foods occasionally, without the desperation we once felt, and without accelerating our demise like a house afire.

Developing Balance in the Foods We Eat

But how does one do this in the modern life? You can’t really wait for a gradual cure, a slow ascent up the ladder of health, a recuperation. Try fasting and you'll get sick from the shock of it. Excluding foods is not enough. You need a leg-up, a respite, a turnaround, a ringer to beat back the impulses. This is where vitamins come in. Not one-a-day vitamins, a farce, but taking specific vitamins in large enough quantities to address our problems and to make the instant corrections, to jolt the body back to health with all the nutrients and bacteria necessary to reach optimum digestion. Only then can one use the tried-and-true methods of slow, build-up of healthy foods to make the final cure, not just a temporary respite.

When you do allow sugar into the stomach, take vitamin C afterwards to keep fat from being stored in the body. When you drink coffee, or wine, you can help cleanse with calcium-magnesium which will transform the tannins and acids into harmless salts. All food substitution addictions can be defeated with multiple, smaller meals of whole grains or sprouted legumes.

Eating Naturally isn't Impossible

Natural Foods can be very easy to add to menu plans. You essentially have to add whole grains to the American diet. Whole grains are the untouched, unrefined, uncooked or unprocessed grain. This includes brown rice, millet, quinoa, barely, buckwheat, oats, amaranth, etc.. Avoid the refined versions of any of these grains. Use “short grain” brown rice, which is richer in the B vitamins. Brown rice is called the Chinese B vitamin pill, because it is such a great source of those vitamins and complex carbohydrates. There is NO BETTER FOOD for your stomach than brown rice. Don’t try to fob it off by eating so-called whole grain breads, or crackers. Its easy to add authentic whole grains to your diet. You cook whole grains by boiling them, 2 parts water to one part grain. Usually it can take 20 to 40 minutes of slow boil to cook grains, and a five-minute "rest" period. Quinoa is faster, brown rice is slower.

brown rice and beans
Brown rice and beans source

It's also easy to add greens to the diet. Kale, broccoli, collard and mustard greens. Forget spinach, forget lettuce, ONLY the dense greens with thick stalks have the vitamins and minerals you need, as well as the scouring abilities to clean out your system. These greens take longer to cook and have a stronger taste so you’ll have to find the best way to season them. Chop up collards into small pieces and sautee them on a med-high flame with garlic and olive oil for about 10 minutes, adding a few drops of water to keep them from wilting or burning. If you don’t want to pan fry or boil your greens, Southern-style, you can lightly steam them or puree them with cream or vegetable stock for a delicious soup or sauce. Brown rice and greens are such a magnificent foundation for your health, that you can just about eat anything else on top, and still maintain good health.

Sausage Cabbage Medley

March is national nutrition month. This is also that time of year when we have finished consuming our last winter crops and beginning to eat our spring brassicas. Eat these brassicas and root veggies mixed to fully benefit their ultimate nutritional quality. These mixed veggies will also protect the bodies' immune system from the transitional shift from winter to spring. We are coming into a time of fertility, fruiting and spiritual awakening. Always use fresh high quality ingredients! RECIPE

Lady Buggs Farm is an Urban Farm, part of the Local Foods movement in Youngstown, Ohio. Visit Lady Buggs on facebook for more information.



An army marches on its stomach

Said Napoleon. It's also true about YOU. The stomach is the source of health—and the portal of disease. Like a food-processing factory, it produces nutrients and waste. The workers are bacteria. YOU are the boss. How do you maintain a healthy stomach? MORE



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The classic self-help manual of the 1960s, when Adele Davis was at the forefront of a national movement for people to seize control of their own options to achieve good health and cure diseases. She used the available science and clinical studies to prove that the body was a chemical factory that required certain vitamins and minerals, without which the body deteriorates. She saved thousands of people personally--people doctors had given up on--and taught millions to understand and use vitamin and nutritional therapies to protect their health and cure disease.

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