Friday, December 26, 2014

Food

When I grew up in the 70's it was normal to be of a normal weight. Today, many in US will not know what it's like for the majority to be of a normal BMI. Today, in regards to BMI, it's normal to be abnormal. It's the normal that stick out.

From the later 80's to early 90's there became a massive change in America. Weight gain happened on an unprecedented scale never seen before in human history. The person who first realized this, at first didn't believe her numbers. But looking every which way, she realized she was right. Her name is Katherine Flegal and she was a research scientist for the CDC.

Have you ever seen the BMI charts where the nation's BMI per state is calculated? It's quite dramatic and where the state with the lowest obesity today would have been the state with the highest obesity back in the 90's. The change in the last 20-30 years is unprecedented in the evolution of mankind.

Dr Kessler, former head of the FDA, wrote a book called "The End of Overeating". He talks "off the record" with a food industry leader. The exec tells how food is created to make what is called "Bliss point". Where salt, sugar and fat are mixed together so that food becomes hyperpalatable.

Food becomes hyperpalatable through two ways, loading and layering. An example of loading is tortillas fried in oil. An example of layering are potato skins (first fried (that's loading)) and then adding the bacon, cheese and sour cream.

So foods like spinach dip might sound healthy, but far from it. The spinach is merely coloring to all the added fat. Salads sound so nutritious, but when the fried chicken, cheese and ranch dressing is added (layered), it hardly can qualify as an healthy food.

When eating at restaurants, one is going to battle with one's health against the greatest minds in food science. Drugs, cigarettes we can do without. Food we need. But the food we've learned to eat reaches our bliss point and is so hyperpalatable that we constantly overeat.

I have a friend that everytime she eats she makes a comment about the food. It's sad because while she does the battle constantly in her mind, she realizes she will never win. One can't eat the way America eats and have any chance of being an ideal weight.

The foods we're meant to eat are whole and from the earth. They don't taste nearly as good as the food we're accustomed to. To eat these foods is difficult. But to wean oneself from these hyper foods is the only way to find long term health and happiness.


The Buffer Zone

In life there are three zones. The top zone is the "life is good" (LIG) zone, the middle is called the "buffer" zone and the bottom is called "YOURFUCKED" zone. (YOURFUCKED is an acronym for: you only understand real freedom until clearly kill every dream.)

The LIG zone is the ideal zone. Life is good. No house, car payments and 106 in savings. Whenever something happens, and there are always unexpected happenings, it becomes no problem. Dip into the buffer zone, recover, and back to the LIG zone.

The buffer zone is also a good place to be. One can deal with life's vicissitudes and with patience find themself in the LIG zone. Bumps in ther road are just that, bumps in the road. The buffer zone allows one a certain amount of freedom and peace.

The YOURFUCKED zone is the lease desired zone. Take away the other two zones and this zone is what remains. When one is in the YOURFUCKED zone, forget about the LIG zone. Strive for the buffer zone. I used to say that 103 ($1,000) would be a good place to start for a buffer zone, but lately I realize even that is too optimistic. For many 102  would be a great goal to strive for.

Sure, it's easy to have $100. But to have a $100 always at the ready is something quite different. The $100 should be touched only in the most dire of straights. If any of the last $100 gets used, it gets repleneshed ASAP. Even go without food for a few days if necessary. Dumpster diving is the order of the day until that $100 is refunded.

Imagine what 103 would do for many if learned how to deal with 102. The power and freedom would be incredible. I dare say it would be much more important than growing from 106 to 107. How powerful is that?

So if in the YOURFUCKED zone, work hard to find the buffer zone. And grow that buffer zone. Remember, from simply going from the bottom zone to the middle zone is much more drastic than Warren Buffett making $10B in one day.


Thursday, December 25, 2014

What Everyone and Everything Seeks

I believe it's true what Ayn Rand teaches (or at least what I think she teaches). And that is that man seeks above all else his own self interest.

I was driving around Long Beach, CA the other day and I realized that everyone, and I mean everyone, pursues happiness as their ultimate goal. Whatever is done, it's done for the sole purpose of individual happiness. Every single thing. From the tiniest breath, to even enduring extreme pain, it's ultimately for our own happiness.

I'll take it even further and say altruism is ultimately selfish. I'll let the reader think about this.

Even alcohol, cigarettes and drug abuse. It's all about happiness.

It's the mature person though that can look long term and deny short term pleasure. By denying short term pleasure, even enduring short term pain, in the long run will reap daily dividends.

In fact, if someone was to learn what makes them happy, what truly makes them happy, could save enough and never have to work again the rest of their life by the age of 30. Once "enough" can be well defined, "enough" is not nearly as much as we currently think it is.

What can be more important than the breath we just breathed or the beautiful sunshine?

There's so much to be thankful for. I'm thankful for my material things, but I'm thankful for so much beyond that. Gratitude should be a natural outcropping of this great life we have the pleasure to live.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Food Thoughts

Been thinking about food things and thought I'd create a new post.

Isn't it weird (being a so called vegan) when I eat fruit/veggies I get comments that I'm too skinny and my diet isn't healthy.

But eating fried chicken, french fries, cokes, you get the idea--no one says a fuckin thing. It's only when I don't eat what's the status quo that all of sudden people are concerned for my health. But if I kept chowing down the hamburgers/hot dogs and chips, I wouldn't hear a word.

And we take it for granted that eating fried chicken and french fries, food that is dropped in 100% vegetable oil is healthy. To tell someone that oil, the most concentrated/processed food on the planet that it's not healthy, and they wonder what the hell I'm talking about. Don't I know that oil is healthy for the heart? What's wrong with me?

Potatoes, not allowed now on the WIC (Women, Infant, Child) program, but butter, oil, meat and dairy certainly is. Why is the potato so bad for your health it's banned? Oh, those evil carbs. Yes, the white potato is only 1% fat, has all the protein, vitamins and minerals in that one food alone.

As Gary Taubes says in one of his books, it's better to eat lard than eat broccoli. Oh yes, a meat centered diet is healthy and those evil carbs we must outlaw and stay away from. Just look at indigenous populations around the world that before industrialization suffered no obesity. The reason, they only ate bacon, steaks, soda and milk. Or possibly foods like beans, rice, potatoes.

The science is too in favor for the truth to be muffled too much longer. Instead of being labeded a freak by eating a whole foods plant based diet, in the future it might be looked on as strange eating the carcass of a cow that's been soaked in oil and butter.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

LA Zoo--Zeitgeist Betwixt Animals and Man

Went to the LA Zoo yesterday.

As a kid I mused, "how do they know what to feed these animals". Turns out it's pretty simple--grass, veggies and fruits. The Cambodian elephant eats 300lbs of grass per day. Man, that sure makes for a lot of shit.

Watching four of the biggest animals-elephant, giraffe, hippo and gorilla-they all ate a vegetarian diet. Yet as a vegan I'm always asked, "But where do you get your protein?". A protein deficiency is called Kwashiorkor, and as far as I know, besides parents who severely abuse their children, there hasn't been a case in America, since I don't know how long. But I bet it's been a long time.

It's comforting to see the animals are fed a whole food plant based (WFPB) diet. They had a few monkeys quarantined because they had diabetes. My guess is the kids fed them their ice creams. Just kidding, but monkeys get diabetes just like we do.

Two things disheartened me during my visit. It just felt wrong being a voyeur looking in on them and that these animals are captive for our viewing pleasure.

The other thing that bothered me was noticing that we feed the animals better than we feed our own children. If the animals ate was was offered to the children, there'd be a hell of a lot more cases of diabetes.

But we're setting up our children for diabetes, because there's no doubt, what these kids are eating is incubating and eventually will manifest itself in diseases that western man gets. What we do see though now is manifested in their obesity. See a kid obese? No need to do further  tests. An obese child will have health problems.

The offerings at the park were churros, ice cream, cokes, candy, popcorn--you get the idea. Why not have at least one eatery that offered WFPB food? Fact is, it'd go out of business. Let's be honest.

So when a child does decide to eat a WFPB diet, he's SOL, because the average restaurant defaults to a highly refined/deep fried/meat/dairy menu.

When potatoes are not allowed on the WIC program, but if schools do not offer cow's milk they lose government funding, you know we have a problem with children's nutrition.

The animals might not know they're eating a WFPB diet, but that's their reality. If someone asked me what I ate and I told them a whole foods plant based diet, they'd ask--"What's that?".

Monday, February 3, 2014

Food, What Should Be The Real Name

So it's Superbowl Sunday and we have a small gathering at our house.

Friends know my food sensiblilities and make things I might like. Pea soup for example. Gets me thinking about how we name foods. Pea soup sure sounds healthy. Peas, carrots, onions. Reality is, pea soup nowadays is very, very high in salt, high in saturated fat with ham, sausage etc.

A better name might be salt soup. Or saturated fatty meat soup. Or why not get to the bottom of it and call it high blood pressure soup, or atherosclerotic soup. Or this shit leads to early death soup.

Thinking about it, instead of Apple Pie, with all it's sugar and refined flour, we could rename it Diabetes Pie.

I like how we have these names for foods that conjure up family, togetherness, and wholesomeness, but really is nothing more than an appetizing word to get you to eat shit. That's really the fucken truth. Let's get fucken real and be honest about it.


Friday, January 17, 2014

A Time to keep my mouth shut, A Time to....

Customer's always right, right?

You know and I know it's just not true.

So today I'm at the $.99 store. I'm at the cash register and the cashier is dealing with a customer that is ahead of me. The customer is a lady who is being mean to the cashier. She just keeps giving her grief and won't let up.

After cashier is done with that customer, she's ready to move on to the next. There are 2 bananas lying on the belt in front of customer's other items. Cashier asks if the bananas are hers. No they belong to previous delightful customer. Cashier will give previous customer the 2 bananas, but she will have to pay for them. Customer gives cashier grief saying she's already paid for them. Cashier looks for receipt to see if that is true which both she and customer know it's not. Customer says "I'll pay for them again". She is charged $.25 for 2 bananas and then scowls at cashier for not saying "thank you".

Really, I wanted to stay out of it, but I couldn't. I told the lady that she's a bitch. A few other words were exchanged, but truly, she was the ugliest and rudest person I've come across in a long time.

Then after she left and cashier is dealing with me, we make small talk and she then apoligizes for the other customer. I told her "please, don't apoligize for her". So now it's her fault that the customer treated her like shit and she has to apoligize to me. The wackiness just keeps building.

She finishes with my order, I'm set to leave but what happens? She finds it necessary to apoligize one more time.

She was a nice girl, but I wanted to wack her upside the head too.


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Diabetes Testing

Testing is a great tool to see where we are in regards to health.

The most effective tool is a test we can do ourselves. It is called the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). The OGTT is the gold standard for checking for diabetes or pre-diabetes. Unfortunately, it not a test administered in yearly physical health screenings. When was the last time you went to a doctor and he had you take the OGTT?

By administering the test ourselves, we find our fasting blood sugar level (which in reality can misdiagnose diabetes which is the test given in a yearly physical check-up). But then check again after 2 hours of drinking 75 grams of carbohydrates. Ideally we want to be under 120 at the 1 hour mark. At the 2 hour mark, between 140-199 is pre-diabetes and over 200 is diabetes.

Testing gives us the picture of  how our  health is doing. By catching diabetes early, we can take measures to assure that the trend of diabetes is reversed.

Exercise-How Much?

How many times per day should we engage in exercise?

I figure 5 times per day. For those of you who get exhausted from watching football 10 hours on a Sunday, going from couch to refrig, and repetitively lifting arm to mouth, only four.

The first exercise comes when waking up in the morning and taking an early walk. After each meal, a 15 minute exercise helps the insulin and glucose to enter the cells. And then a longer exercise engaging in a favorite sport or a visit to the gym running a few miles and doing weights.

You might ask, how do I fit my job into all this? That's the point. It's time to quit your job. Don't allow something as trivial as making a living get in the way of a trim healthy body.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Do Restaurants Care?

Do you think restaurants care about your health? You're smiling, right? You know restaurants don't give a shit about your health. Fact is, most people don't give a shit about their health. Or, they might think they do, but their actions speak something different.

All restaurants are unhealthy. There's not a restaurant I could walk in, and say, "I can eat anything I want here, it's all healthy". Even The Soup Plantation: The salad dressings are loaded with fat and salt. The breads are refined, loaded with salt. The soups too, excessive salt.

This is the reality of our toxic surroundings. We all think this is good for us and it's the exact opposite. Sure, we might get a little gastro reflux when we eat at these places, but we think it's generally OK. It takes years for our bodies to break down from this incessant bombardment we subject our systems to.

Diabetes, heart disease, cancer, IBD, MS, GERD, hemorrhoids, diverticulosis, gall stones, appendix problems. All of these are caused by the western diet. What's the western diet? Look at what you eat. That's the western diet. Meat, milk, eggs, cheese, bread--that kind of shit.

All of these diseases can be reversed or avoided by doing only one thing: eating only foods that contain fiber. Eat a high fiber diet, avoid all the problems you see around you. All of them.

Obesity should not even exist. It should be rare to see someone obese. But in US it's actually become abnormal to be of normal weight. What we see around us we think as normal. It's not.

So by doing that one thing, eating a high fiber diet, you're restricting other things that help lead to this crisis we're in. No meat, oil, salt, sugar, dairy.

Yeah, you virtually have to be a monk in today's age to make it happen. But instead of whining, look at the big picture and study people like T L Cleave, Hugh Trowell, Denis Burkitt, Dr McDougall et al. This shit ain't no joke. If you got problems, get your ass in gear and you take control. Learn! And start eating properly.

Follow the herd if you want. Do the Adkin's, South Beach, Paleo diets if you really think that's the way to health. Or do some research, be honest with yourself, and realize where health originates and take the steps to make it happen.

BTW, you might now have relatively good heath. Possibly only one or two symptoms, or even none. But these diseases have an incubation period of many years. Eating the western diet will cause western disease. You can't escape the biological laws of cause and effect.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Paleolithic Man v Western Man

In learning about nutrition oftern the conversation is about early man. I always found it a curiousity, but really I thought, who gives a shit, these guys rarely lasted beyond 20-30 years.

Now I see why it's so important to study early man. If you believe in evolution and that we evolved from millions and millions of years, it then makes sense. Man, through millenia evolved a certain diet for survival. And contrary to what many believe, it was a WFPB whole foods plant based diet.

Just as we can see the effects of smoking or alcohol, we experience daily the effects of the wrong kinds of food. We were not designed to eat the diet we eat. Just about every chronic disease we suffer is due to our diet. A diet of refined grains and restaurant foods. We eat a diet high in salt, oil and refined sugar. Daily we eat enough salt that could supply our bodies for a month. And we do this day in and day out ad nauseam. We actually believe oil is healthy for us. We do realize refined carbohydrates are bad for us, but still eat bread, cookies, cakes etc.

Chronic diseases that could be avoided: auto immune diseases such as lupus, MS. Associated heart dieseases including deep vain thrombosis, vericose veins, high blood pressure, heart attacks. The other piping system including diverticulosis, diverticulitis, crohn's disease, colitis, hemorrhoids, hiatal hernia.

All these diseases are caused by the western diet. If we started to eat a WFPB diet, these problems would likely disappear. But to eat a WFPB diet after being addicted to our Western Diet is herculean. I believe it's one of the most difficult achievments one can do in life.

Video of Dr McDougall interviewing Dr Denis Burkitt


Saturday, September 7, 2013

I'm an Athiest

Well, I haven't posted in a long time, so I thought I'd drop an article.

Though I'm almost 60, I've come to the conclusion I'm an atheist. I've come to this conclusion this week.

I don't want to get into the whole believer, agnostic, athiest argument. Either one believes in a god, or one doesn't. I might be wrong, but I do think with a measure of certainty, that I'm more right than people who believe in god. Especially a personal god.

It's funny, I've made this decision this week and I feel like a "rush to judgment", but I want to be firm in what I believe.

It's actually exciting because I know common sense and science aligns with my belief. And since I'm only 5% of the population, it'll be
fun to fuck with people's belief/culture system.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Reasons I Like ROTH IRA


  • I'm more likely to take an active interest in a retirement account if I know all the money made will not be taxed.
  • Therefore, let's say I have $100K in ROTH account. If account were to grow to $2million (add $1.9M), every cent is tax free.
  • If I made $1.9 million now outside of ROTH, almost 50% would go to taxes. Not only would I be left with only $1 million, I'd forever lose the chance to make money from the money paid in taxes. And of course any future monies made would be taxed.
  • It's a fact that we're living longer. With a ROTH IRA instead of a traditional IRA, I can let my money  keep growing instead of taking forced withdrawals at 70.5 years.
  • If I die, spouse would be in higher tax bracket. With ROTH, it doesn't matter.
  • Social Security can be taxed up to 85%. With a ROTH withdrawal, it's not counted as income.
  • If taxes go higher, both Federal and State, which looks like they will, I'm protected.

These are the reasons I like a ROTH IRA. How exciting if I was 16, starting out, and maximizing my ROTH. And what must be understood for young people is that you are always able to withdraw what you put into a ROTH with no tax liabilities.

Of course who knows what the future portends. It's still one hell of a safety net. Though I can live like a king on $10K/year in today's monies, a $2 million ROTH account would be the same as $2 billion--more than I'd ever need.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Health

In describing my blog, three of the main topics are Western Civilization/Politics, Personal Finance/Economy and Nutrition/Health.

Looking back at my posts, not only is there anything I wish to change, but everything I wrote I stand by today. No regrets.

As I'm getting older, nearing 60, I'm getting the chance to look back over my life and decisions made.

For instance, in the beginning, my seach for great health was to live near a reputable hospital. IOW, my health was not in my hands, or my responsibility, but the doctors'.

Now for some reason, I find I'm in a very extreme small minority when it comes to health/nutrition. I was always concerned with health. I gravitated towards a vegan diet and the writings of doctors such as Dr McDougall.

In the beginning of my journey, I didn't think I would ever be able to gain the health that I wanted. People who I read about, one was a mentor of mine, spent time at Dr McDougall's health retreats to gain back his health. I thought I would never have the chance for the same health because I was too poor to attend Dr McDougall's seminars.

But what I've learned is there is no magic in attending Dr M's classes. What needs to be learned can be gleaned from his books and videos from Youtube. 

To gain health is actually quite simple. And inexpensive. What's difficult is going against everything  learned and culture.

As I've said earlier, I'm older and as time's gone by, I've gained wisdom. And some of that wisdom is regarding nutrition. In general, with our ideas, customs, etc, we all regress to the center of the Bell Curve. If we stray out to the fringes, we realize our mistakes and are brought back in the fold. The center is usually right. 

But on the fringes I will stay. Eating meat, meat byproducts, processed foods is the norm in America. Overweight is the norm. Taking pills is the norm. I choose to eat a diet free of animals, and its by-product, animal suffering. I want to eat foods grown from the earth in as minimally processed fashion as possible.

It doesn't seem to do that would put me on the outer fringes, but it does. Certainly times are changing, and I do believe the Bell Curve will slide over to where I'll eventually be in the center, but that time is still far away.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Google Ripped Me Off

A few months ago, I received a flyer in the mail. It was a special offer, $50 to advertise with Google.

I checked my Visa statement yesterday. A $200 charge from Google!

I called Google and asked what it was about. They said it was for advertising with them. I said I never wanted to advertise with them beyond their $50 offer. They said they make it clear when I sign up that there will be additional charges that will be debtited from my Visa automaticly every month.

So not only do I not get a refund from Google, they are charging a $113 to close the account. Classy Google.

What I've now learned with Google if they offer anything where they want my Visa card number, stay away. Google's offered a lot of free stuff that I use daily, but now I hate Google.

PS. If you're wondering if the advertising did any good, the answer is no. I do appliance repair and I did not get one lead from Google.