Monday, April 30, 2012

on my mind monday 4.30.12

news | photo: mconnors
It's never the same two weeks in a row.  A collection of what I find interesting in health, nutrition, and holistic living.  Read what's on my mind.

Beef Cattle Become Behemoths - Antibiotics are not the only dangerous thing being fed to our livestock (dangerous because the overuse has negative physical effects for us such as helping to breed disease resistant bacteria).  Many conventional farms also feed animals hormones and other drugs to make them grow faster, grow fatter, and push their development all in the name of profit.  Many countries around the world, such as those in the European Union, do not allow this because of concerns about it's effect on the people that eat the meat from treated animals.  When that animal is slaughtered all the hormones and drugs do not go away, they stay in the meat and the fat.  If you eat it you then are consuming those products as well.  Building " bovine Schwartzeneggers" is not in the best interest of anyone other than the company that sells these drugs.  Now it looks like in addition to co-opting medical schools with research dollars and propaganda, pharmaceutical companies are, and have been, doing the same with agricultural schools.  Don't get me wrong, there are many good pharmaceutical formulations and they can have great benefit.  I just don't believe that this type of drug oversale is an appropriate usage, nor do I believe it is healthy for the animal or for those that consume it.

Watermelon's Wild Cousins - A watermelon that grows in the desert?  And provides reasonable nutrition?  Who knew such a thing existed.  This article highlights the Tsamma melon which grows, amazingly enough, in the Kalahari in South Africa.  The description of use and nutrition in this family of melons highlights why we need agricultural diversity and not genetically modified commercially motivated mono-cropping.  This idea is further highlighted by a recent article I spotted about Vietnamese farmers changing melon crops due to drought conditions.  My take from reading the article is that they were choosing a different type of melon rather than a GMO melon; an agriculturally and environmentally positive choice. - A wonderful guided meditation site with fabulous audio/video presentations.  Two minutes that can lower your blood pressure, re-center you, and help you to feel better.

Feeding a city is something that we don't often think about. But as we move to cities our diet changes, demand for meat and dairy goes up. And there's food waste and food imbalance (larger and larger number of starving people as well as those that are overfed). This video highlights how food moves into a city and looks at ways to help solve some of the problems that cities face when it comes to their food.

Four Foods You Probably Waste - I bring this topic up a lot.  Food is more than just access to good, clean, nourishing products.  It's also about proper utilization of what we have.  That means not wasting it.  Even though rotting food can be thrown into a compost heap to be turned into beneficial compost, isn't it best to eat it?  After all, you paid for it.  Here's a few simple and delicious looking recipes to help you avoid throwing out some of the most commonly wasted foods.

What I'm Reading

Make The Bread, Buy The Butter - I picked up the copy at my local library.  By the top of the second page I was hooked.  I like her writing style, we think the same way, and I have already bookmarked several recipes to try.  I was most impressed with her bread which uses 3 1/2 cups of whey.  That's awesome.  I have lots of whey hanging around from straining yogurt; although I use it, I confess sometimes it gets fed to the dogs because I have too much.  I am occasionally tempted to make ricotta cheese from leftover whey.  The trick is you need 16 quarts of the stuff and if I tried to squeeze 16 quarts into my side-by-side refrigerator I'm pretty sure my family would be upset due to the lack of space for food.  And that 16 quarts of whey?  It yields less than 2 cups of ricotta.  I haven't gotten to that part of the book but I'm guessing she recommends buying it.  This bread however looks to be a great use for leftover whey.  And I'm planning a tea party just so I can make my own clotted cream.  I'm also looking forward to reading the rest of the book which is definitely on my "to buy" list.

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1 comment:

Sam said...

We too took "Make the Bread" out of the library and it is now on our "to buy" list. Her writing style and hints are both useful and hysterical to read. And buy the ricotta.