I hope you enjoyed reading about mulberries last month and I have whet your appetite to learn more about other berries. Unlike mulberries there is no shortage of studies done on blueberries so there is a wealth of information available. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, blueberries take first prize in the berry category when it comes to antioxidant activity per serving (ORAC values). Blueberries clock in at 2400 with mulberries and blackberries close seconds. This is why blueberries are touted as a super-food when it comes to anti-aging, cancer prevention, heart and vision health.
Other promising health benefits that have emerged in laboratory studies done on blueberries include: • improvement in motor skills and reversal of short term memory • the potential of blueberries to inhibit the growth of Triple Negative Breast Cancer, a particularly aggressive and hard to treat form of breast tumor, • may inhibit both the initiation and promotion stages of cancer • may confer protection to the brain against damage from ischemic stroke • may reduce plasma cholesterol levels especially LDL cholesterol • could help regulate blood pressure and combat atherosclerosis • may improve night vision and prevent tired eyes.
But then strawberries are also highly nutritious with abundant health benefits and, in season, are usually more accessible than other berries. Ideally look for organic, firm, bright, juicy, fragrant berries with fresh green caps. If you remove the caps you tear cells in the berries, activating an enzyme that destroys vitamin C. If the berries are not organic, wash them thoroughly as strawberries are one of the most pesticide-sprayed fruit crops. Do not hull them before washing as this may reduce the nutritional value of the strawberry. And here’s a little trick that will keep organic strawberries from deteriorating too soon: Add ½ cup of white or brown vinegar to the bowl of water you wash them in – caps on of course. Dry them well on a dish cloth and when completely dry store in the fridge. This prevents mould from growing and extends their life although they still won’t last as long as some commercially grown strawberries that last forever in the fridge. We do not want to know why!!
An article published online on April 26, 2012 in the Annals of Neurology reports a protective effect for diets containing high amounts of blueberries and strawberries against cognitive decline in older women. In this study cognitive function was tested every two years in 16,010 participants who were over the age of 70 between 1995 and 2001. Consuming a relatively high amount of blueberries or strawberries was associated with a slower decline in cognitive function test scores compared to women whose intake was lower, resulting in a delay in cognitive aging of up to 2.5 years. Although the study was done on women it surely applies to men too so no excuse for not making the most of berry season – get eating! Raspberries too!
Here are two recipes which kids will enjoy too and since they contain protein, carbs and fat, they’ll be sustaining too:
Berrie Lollies Ingredients: • 1 cup fresh or frozen mixed berries • 1 cup plain low-fat yoghurt • 1/2 cup organic cream (optional) • Xylitol or stevia to sweeten Method: 1. Blend all the ingredients till smooth 2. Pour into lolly moulds and freeze for 3 to 4 hours. 3. Place the frozen moulds under warm water for a few seconds before attempting to remove.
Blueberry smoothie Ingredients: • 1 cup blueberries or mixed berries, fresh or frozen • 2 bananas, preferably frozen • 1½ plain low-fat yoghurt • Xylitol, stevia or raw honey to sweeten Blend till smooth, adding iced water if necessary. Drink immediately.
CoQ10 an Effective Treatment for Male Fertility
Gosh I really have bent your ear these past few months about CoQ10 but here is a benefit I haven’t mentioned yet: A total of 228 men with unexplained infertility were given either placebo or 200mg coenzyme Q10 daily for 26 weeks. At the end of the treatment period, sperm density was 70% higher in the CoQ10 group, sperm motility was 40% higher, and sperm structure was 19% better. They also found that the longer the men were on CoQ10, the better the improvement in their sperm count, function and motility. (Journal of Urology, August 2012)
Remember the launching price of R300 for my newly imported See Yourself Well CoQ10 only holds till the end of November so don't miss out. The price will be R350 from 1 December 2012.
Understanding PMS – which group are you?
No woman deserves to suffer PMS symptoms. Understanding what may be causing it is more than half the battle won. This article explains it so well and what they say about diet is very true. This is why most of the PMS sufferers I see are easily helped within a month with just two supplements: Vit B6+Magnesium and Omega-3 fish oil capsules. Hopefully by that time we have also managed to correct her diet so that she no longer requires supplements for this condition. Junk food plays a huge role in PMS!
Vit D and colorectal cancer
An article published online on January 25, 2012 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention reports an association between higher prediagnostic levels of vitamin D and increased survival among patients with colorectal cancer.
The study evaluated the association between serum vitamin D levels and mortality among 1,202 men and women enrolled in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort, which recruited over 520,000 participants from 1992 to 1998. Subjects in the current study were diagnosed with colorectal cancer between enrollment and June, 2003. Blood samples obtained upon recruitment were analyzed for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D]. Over a mean follow-up period of 73 months, 444 deaths due to colorectal cancer and 97 deaths from other causes occurred.
Men and women whose serum vitamin D levels were among the top 20 percent of participants had a 31 percent lower risk of dying from colorectal cancer and a 33 percent lower risk of mortality from any cause compared to those whose levels were among the lowest 20 percent. Having a high vitamin D level was protective against cancers of both the colon and the rectum.
On the subject of Vitamin D I have some very interesting feedback to share with you. At the end of Summer this year I told you that I had been for a 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood test and was shocked to discover that someone like me who spends a lot of time in the sun could actually have a Vitamin D serum level lower than I felt comfortable with. Although the pathologists guidelines state that anything above 30ng/l is great, the fundis who do the research on the protective effect of vitamin D against cancer etc, claim that levels of 50-75 ng/l are required. Well mine was 51ng/l and I was not happy being so borderline. So I added 2 drops of liquid Vit D, thus delivering 2000IU Vit D, to my daily supplement regime. Last month I decided to see if this had made any difference as I was a little sceptical. You want to know?..... 71 ng/l!!! Up 20ng/l in just 6 months! And I feel a lot happier with a serum level of vit D purported to be more protective against all sorts of degenerative diseases.
The war against cancer
Linus Pauling, a twice recognized Nobel price winner said: ‘Everyone should know that most cancer research is largely a fraud and that the major cancer research organizations are derelict in their duties to the people who support them’. Remember, Linus said it, I didn’t!! Call me chicken, if you like.
Here is another video clip you simply must watch. Once again ... I never said it, she did!!
We’re approaching that time of year when we will be urged to either stay out of the sun or coat ourselves with sunscreen. I wrote in my October 2011 newsletter why sunscreens may do more harm than good. Have another look. For a different perspective read what Elizabeth Plourde, CLS, NCMP, PhD has to say in The False Promises of Sunscreens: The Real Consequences of Their Use: Part 2 where she suggests a link between the excessive use of sunscreens and the increase in autism and ADHD rates. While there have a look at Part 1 too where she suggests sunscreens result in an increase in skin cancers and photoaging of the skin.
We need to remember that sunscreens do not completely abolish the adverse effects of UV light. As far as possible protect yourself and your children with hats and clothing rather than sunscreens. However sunscreen on the face and ears may be necessary while swimming.
1. Please tell non-smoker wannabes about the 10% discount on Vice-Breaker available till end November. Speed post also free till then. See www.quitsmokingnaturally.co.za for more details. They should act now as the weak rand is making a price increase on my December shipment imminent.
2. See Yourself Well CoQ10 is R300 instead of R350 until 30 November.
True or False?
"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon" – Doug Larson