Hola! How ya doing? So, if you haven’t read my article about the best supplement in the world, then I believe that is where you need to start. I was so excited about it when I discovered it that I didn’t really feel that I completed the story some days later when I reread it. I said to myself, Skai, folks are not going to know how to use this stuff…so here we go.
First of all, you can get Konjac root in the capsule form, but I do not recommend it all. Im just not into consuming by swallowing. I prefer to eat and chew everything. So, I would never really recommend anything in the pill form. Not to mention that Konjac has this unique way about it that I actually think is rather dangerous, so I don’t think that Konjac is very safe to swallow. You see, Konjac has one of the most superior viscosities on the planet. That means that when you had water to Konjac it just swells up to like 1000x the size that it started from.
On the lite scale, you can use it to create thicker sauces in your cooking…but naturally we are trying to use it for a weight loss supplement. So, that is why I recommend it in the powder form. There have been cases where people have choked from Konjac root because it gets lodged in the throat if it is not completely swallowed, which can cause chocking. So, let us stick with the powder form for now and have found that I actually prefer to eat it then to drink it.
I have been experimenting with Konjac root for a very short while now and I prefer to make it into a “pudding” or “applesauce” and then eat it like a breakfast with a spoon. You can actually just add water and let it gel up and then eat it…but life is meant to be enjoyed. So I started making mine with Apple Juice. Basically what I would do is get a glass jar with a lid on it. And old Salsa jar is perfect because it is short and stout enough to accommodate the amount of liquid you would need. Pour in about 10 oz of juice into the jar and add one heaping tablespoon in to the jar. Cover tightly and quickly shake the contents to death. The colder the juice, the less clumps you will have in your jar. Unlike corn starch that needs to be heated to thicken, Konjac thickens in cold water. However, it actually thickens faster in hot water…so using it cold will give you a minute or two more to gel. I usually let it sit for a few so it can do its thing and then I grab a spoon and eat it.
After a while the apple juice got boring, so I had to switch it up and bought some Simply Lemonade and mixed that in. I actually loved that and started using different juices to change the flavor. So I am assuming that you can use any flavor juice that you want to. Now, I read somewhere online that people are using Crystal Light to sweeten and flavor their Konjac pudding and I said to myself absolutely NO WAY! Crystal Light is like putting plutonium in your body…chemicalized and toxic. Don’t do it! Now, if you are interested in creating a pudding without any calories whatsoever, then I would recommend you get those flavored stevia drops that people use for coffee. They come in a slew of flavors.
Once you have made your “pudding”, you should be eating this first thing in the morning. This should be your breakfast. After you eat it, make sure you drink plenty of water afterwards. Almost immediately after you eat it, you will actually feel stuffed. It is as if it has expanded in your stomach and will definitely prevent you from overeating because you feel completely full. You can go without eating till afternoon where you should consume a nice big salad and smoothie…but you may not even be able to consume everything still. You can adjust your eating according to how you feel with your new Konjac pudding added into your diet. This is really good for folks who eat too much or even too many calories. When you are full, you now have to take heed to your body saying…Im good! Having a feeling of fullness without eating too many calories will give your body the opportunity to release the weight in a natural fashion. And it kinda “sykes” you out, because you don’t feel deprived at all. You wont be hungry.
You do have to eat, and hopefully with your Konjac pudding addition to your diet you can eat the right things now that you are in control. Remember you still have to eat. Konjac is not a food with nutrients enough in it to sustain you. Don’t go on a konjac binge because Skai said it will fill me up…no that is not going to work.
Konjac is an all natural, all vegetarian, plant based filler. I read somewhere that it is comparable to getting lap band surgery. Basically you fill your stomach up so that you can only get a smaller amount of food in it and what happens you eat less. That is the basically gist of it.
So what happens to Konjac in your stomach later? It digests in the system and you poop it out. Pretty simple. Konjac root has some nutrients which I mentioned in the first article about it. But remember is 100% soluble fiber. Your bowels are going to be so happy. You are going to fill a bowl up like never before and everything is going to be floating…as it should. Sorry for being graphic, but I know this is soo important.
Even Dr Oz has said how much he loves Konjac Root (glucomannan) and that he highly recommends it. So, now I recommend it and will continue to play with it to make things that are tasty. I was reading the back of my Sunwarrior Smoothie Powder and noticed that they have listed Konjac Root on the back as well. I think I am going to order some more and start using it as an additive for my puddings…especially since they have chocolate!
These recommendations are no longer scientifically or morally defensible. The discovery a few years ago that inflammation in the artery wall is the real cause of heart disease is slowly leading to a paradigm shift in how heart disease and other chronic ailments will be treated.
The long-established dietary recommendations have created epidemics of obesity and diabetes, the consequences of which dwarf any historical plague in terms of mortality, human suffering and dire economic consequences.
Despite the fact that 25% of the population takes expensive statin medications and despite the fact we have reduced the fat content of our diets, more Americans will die this year of heart disease than ever before.
Statistics from the American Heart Association show that 75 million Americans currently suffer from heart disease, 20 million have diabetes and 57 million have pre-diabetes. These disorders are affecting younger and younger people in greater numbers every year.
Simply stated, without inflammation being present in the body, there is no way that cholesterol would accumulate in the wall of the blood vessel and cause heart disease and strokes. Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely throughout the body as nature intended. It is inflammation that causes cholesterol to become trapped.
Inflammation is not complicated
Inflammation is not complicated — it is quite simply your body’s natural defence to a foreign invader such as a bacteria, toxin or virus. The cycle of inflammation is perfect in how it protects your body from these bacterial and viral invaders. However, if we chronically expose the body to injury by toxins or foods the human body was never designed to process,a condition occurs called chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is just as harmful as acute inflammation is beneficial.
What thoughtful person would willfully expose himself repeatedly to foods or other substances that are known to cause injury to the body? Well,smokers perhaps, but at least they made that choice willfully.
inflammation in our blood vessels is caused by the low fat diet
The rest of us have simply followed the recommended mainstream diet that is low in fat and high in polyunsaturated fats and carbohydrates, not knowing we were causing repeated injury to our blood vessels. This repeated injury creates chronic inflammation leading to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and obesity.
Let me repeat that: The injury and inflammation in our blood vessels is caused by the low fat diet recommended for years by mainstream medicine.
What are the biggest culprits of chronic inflammation? Quite simply, they are the overload of simple, highly processed carbohydrates (sugar, flour and all the products made from them) and the excess consumption of omega-6 vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower that are found in many processed foods.
Take a moment to visualize rubbing a stiff brush repeatedly over soft skin until it becomes quite red and nearly bleeding. you kept this up several times a day, every day for five years. If you could tolerate this painful brushing, you would have a bleeding, swollen infected area that became worse with each repeated injury. This is a good way to visualize the inflammatory process that could be going on in your body right now.
Regardless of where the inflammatory process occurs, externally or internally, it is the same. I have peered inside thousands upon thousands of arteries. A diseased artery looks as if someone took a brush and scrubbed repeatedly against its wall. Several times a day, every day, the foods we eat create small injuries compounding into more injuries, causing the body to respond continuously and appropriately with inflammation.
While we savor the tantalizing taste of a sweet roll, our bodies respond alarmingly as if a foreign invader arrived declaring war. Foods loaded with sugars and simple carbohydrates, or processed withomega-6 oils for long shelf life have been the mainstay of the American diet for six decades. These foods have been slowly poisoning everyone.
How does eating a simple sweet roll create a cascade of inflammation to make you sick?
Imagine spilling syrup on your keyboard and you have a visual of what occurs inside the cell. When we consume simple carbohydrates such as sugar, blood sugar rises rapidly. In response, your pancreas secretes insulin whose primary purpose is to drive sugar into each cell where it is stored for energy. If the cell is full and does not need glucose, it is rejected to avoid extra sugar gumming up the works.
When your full cells reject the extra glucose, blood sugar rises producing more insulin and the glucose converts to stored fat.
When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels
What does all this have to do with inflammation? Blood sugar is controlled in a very narrow range. Extra sugar molecules attach to a variety of proteins that in turn injure the blood vessel wall. This repeated injury to the blood vessel wall sets off inflammation. When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels.
While you may not be able to see it, rest assured it is there. I saw it in over 5,000 surgical patients spanning 25 years who all shared one common denominator — inflammation in their arteries.
Correct omega-3 Balance
Let’s get back to the sweet roll. That innocent looking goody not only contains sugars, it is baked in one of many omega-6 oils such as soybean. Chips and fries are soaked in soybean oil; processed foods are manufactured with omega-6 oils for longer shelf life. While omega-6’s are essential -they are part of every cell membrane controlling what goes in and out of the cell — they must be in the correct balance with omega-3’s.
If the balance shifts by consuming excessive omega-6, the cell membrane produces chemicals called cytokines that directly cause inflammation.
Today’s mainstream American diet has produced an extreme imbalance of these two fats. The ratio of imbalance ranges from 15:1 to as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6. That’s a tremendous amount of cytokines causing inflammation. In today’s food environment, a 3:1 ratio would be optimal and healthy.
The human body cannot process, nor was it designed to consume, foods packed with sugars and soaked in omega-6 oils.
To make matters worse, the excess weight you are carrying from eating these foods creates overloaded fat cells that pour out large quantities of pro-inflammatory chemicals that add to the injury caused by having high blood sugar. The process that began with a sweet roll turns into a vicious cycle over time that creates heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and finally, Alzheimer’s disease, as the inflammatory process continues unabated.
There is no escaping the fact that the more we consume prepared and processed foods, the more we trip the inflammation switch little by little each day. The human body cannot process, nor was it designed to consume, foods packed with sugars and soaked in omega-6 oils.
There is but one answer to quieting inflammation, and that is returning to foods closer to their natural state. To build muscle, eat more protein. Choose carbohydrates that are very complex such as colorful fruits and vegetables. Cut down on or eliminate inflammation- causing omega-6 fats like corn and soybean oil and the processed foods that are made from them.
Healthy vs Un-Healthy Fats
One tablespoon of corn oil contains 7,280 mg of omega-6; soybean contains 6,940 mg. Instead, use olive oil or butter from grass-fed beef.
Forget the “science” that has been drummed into your head for decades
Animal fats contain less than 20% omega-6 and are much less likely to cause inflammation than the supposedly healthy oils labelled polyunsaturated. Forget the “science” that has been drummed into your head for decades. The science that saturated fat alone causes heart disease is non-existent. The science that saturated fat raises blood cholesterol is also very weak. Since we now know that cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, the concern about saturated fat is even more absurd today.
The cholesterol theory led to the no-fat, low-fat recommendations that in turn created the very foods now causing an epidemic of inflammation. Mainstream medicine made a terrible mistake when it advised people to avoid saturated fat in favor of foods high in omega-6 fats. We now have an epidemic of arterial inflammation leading to heart disease and other silent killers.
What you can do is choose whole foods your grandmother served and not those your mom turned to as grocery store aisles filled with manufactured foods. By eliminating inflammatory foods and adding essential nutrients from fresh unprocessed food, you will reverse years of damage in your arteries and throughout your body from consuming the typical American diet
A Healthy Way to Cook Beans
Who doesn’t love beans? If you don’t, then where are you from? Mars…for real! Bean are such the comfort food. Let me be honest here, beans are one of the main reasons I cant fully commit to the Raw Foods diet. That is how much I love them. And being a vegetarian for over 25 years, beans are a true staple in my home. I buy beans all the time. Even when I have stacks of them at home….you never know…a hurricane can come through or something. Beans to me is REAL FOOD! Thing is do folks really know how to prepare them right? Not all the time. It really depends on where you are at the time.
Personally, I prefer bean made latina-style. I like my beans with onions, garlic, tomato sauce and some pumpkin in it. And the cool thing about it is….I can do this with ANY bean. Any Bean! Did I say ANY Bean…yep, and peas too! The way folks make them in the southern parts of the US…is ok. Not my preference. Not really into sweetened beans….but they get a pass. My grandmother used to cook her beans in a pressure cooker which shortened the time that it would take from those suckers to get soft. I promise myself to get one soon…because I think that cooking dried beans is really energy consuming, which is why using can beans is sometimes what I do to cut cook time.
Don’t forget to read to the end…I have included a Bean recipes for you!
Have you heard of a Bean Pot?
A bean pot is a variation on the crock pot or slow cooker, but it is not electric. It is usually a ceramic pot intended for slow cooking, and is particularly suited for bean cookery. Bean pots are really nothing new. In fact, colonial women would bring crockery pots of beans to the local baker’s to be baked slowly in his oven. You can cook beans by this old-fashioned, money-saving method using a modern bean pot.
How Does It Work?
Using a bean pot is very simple. For beans for dinner on Friday night, begin on Thursday evening by putting dried beans into your pot and covering them with water, at least 2 inches above the beans. In the morning, pour off this soaking water, cover the beans with fresh water (again about 2 inches above the beans), and add any flavorings you like (onion, garlic, herbs, ham hock, etc.). Don’t add salt or anything acidic – these ingredients will prevent the beans from becoming tender. Cover the bean pot and place it in a cold oven, turn the oven to 300 degrees, and leave the beans all day. The design of the pot prevents burning, but you may need to add more water. Check on the beans periodically to be sure they are not drying out.
Another option is to bring the soaked, flavored beans to a boil on the stovetop, then pour the hot mixture into the bean pot, cover, and place in a preheated oven.
You can cook canned beans in your bean pot, too – more on that below.
What Are the Advantages of Using a Bean Pot?
-Beans are very healthy, full of fiber and nutrients such as protein, folate, and magnesium. Having a bean pot will encourage and enable you to prepare more of this healthful food.
-Dried beans are much cheaper than canned beans.
-Dried beans are generally healthier than canned beans. Canned beans often contain large amounts of sodium, and consumers are concerned about chemicals in canned foods, particularly BPA. BPA is a synthetic estrogen that can disrupt hormonal balance, and is often used in the lining of food cans. BPA has even been implicated in contributing to obesity. As noted above, you can cook canned beans in your bean pot, and if you prefer to do this, consider BPA-free canned beans such as those made by Eden Foods. There are also low-sodium canned beans available.
-Slow-cooking beans at a low temperature makes them more digestible, breaking down the starches and sugars thoroughly.
Bean pots are an old idea that is quite applicable to today. Beans are inexpensive, readily available, and versatile. A bean pot can help you to take advantage of this little nutritional treasure.
PUERTO RICAN BEANS: Vegan Habichuelas Guisada
1 can Pinto beans or 2 cups of cooked dried Pintos (soaked and softened)
2 C Water (or Vegetable Stock)
5 tbsp of fresh sofrito (Onions, garlic, green pepper, cilantro)
1 potato of handful of Calabaza (pumpkin) peeled and cubed
2 bay leaves
Bohio brand Sazon (MSG free)
½ tsp Smoked Paprika
5 spanish olives
1 tbsp Annato Oil
4 oz Tomato Sauce
Heat annatto oil and sauté the sofrito for about 3 min. Add the tomato sauce, sazon, olives, smoked paprika, and bay leaves. Sauté for another 2 min and then add the beans, potato/calabaza, and water/veggie stock. Bring to a boil then simmer on Med/low heat until potatoes soften and suace thickens. If it is too watery try mashing some of the potatoes in the sauce, it will thicken it right up.
And this recipe is from my next book coming soon:
Black Beans Stew
- Black Beans
- Cumin Seeds
- Sea Salt
- Soak beans overnight and then rinse thoroughly
- In a nice big heavy pot, I put about 2 pounds of beans with about a gallon and a half of water, turn the heat on High and get the beans rapidly boiling
- Cover the pot about half way, so that some of the steam can escape
- Let the bean cook til soft and then start adding all the seasonings and veggies. Add as much as you need, but normally I would add about one whole chopped onion, several chopped tomatoes, a few cloves of garlic, a teaspoon or two of the cumin seeds.
- Monitor the water, because at some point Black beans will stick something terrible to the bottom of the pot….and you never want that to happen.
- I let the beans cook until they almost disintegrate into a bean dip like soups. Where most of the beans are not even noticeable…Hmmm, so good, chile!
No, this isn’t a typo. Nollywood is the Nigerian version of Hollywood and Bollywood. It’s their movie industry. They have their own stars, themes, languages, and styles. It is the second largest movie industry in the world after India, and before the US, in terms of movies produced annually…some 1200 – 2000 yearly. However, Nollywood comes in third place after the US and India in terms of how much money is made from this industry…approximately from 200 – 500 million annually depending on where you source your information. And top Nollywood actors have a net worth of close to $500,000 (US) which translates into millionaire status back in Nairaland.
I remember the first time I actually saw one of these movies. It was rather interesting to me because I didn’t even know what I was watching. I thought it was one of those Jamaican movies because it was so funny. It starred these two young guys…they were playing brothers, Im not sure if they were small people or children, but they were fantastic. I mean, how often do you see an all Black movie where the quality of the filming is a bit “low budget”, but the story is great. Must be island, I thought to myself. I was used to Jamaican films because naturally living in the Caribbean, we tended to support one another in that way. Not to mention the issues shared in the films and the comedy were comparable. Famous comedians from Jamaica, like Oliver Samuels, were hits in the islands and his production even came to the Virgin Islands years ago where I went to see a play of his. And just like the Nigerian film industry, Jamaican plays became movies and became a big hit.
So I thought I was watching a Jamaican comedy film the first time I saw a Nollywood movie until a friend of mine said it was Afrikan. I was intrigued because as bad as the quality was the storyline was rather entertaining. And so began my love for the industry. At first, when I was living in Baltimore, I had to find and borrow movies from folks who were able to get films from NY on DVD. Or when I would go to NY, I would go to the Afrikan open air market and I would buy like 5 movies at one time. They would sell them so cheap, like $3 a pop. I usually assumed they were bootleg and always wondered how this industry was able to make any money.
Of course I investigated that issue…and Im still not sure about all the facts…but from what I have found, Nollywood movies hit the streets rather quickly after production. And is a straight to DVD industry. They don’t do movie theatres because there was a lot of crime happening in the theatre’s and so people felt more comfortable in their own homes. The DVDs sell for about $2 (US) each which is affordable for the average Nigerian. And in a country with limited resources and lots of people, one movie can easily sell 50,000 – 200,000 copies…before it hits the black markets…and with a production budget from $15,000 – $25,000. That is a pretty good turnover….not to mention that these movies are being released EVERY SINGLE DAY…more than one at a time too! So, Im sure it’s highly competitive and people start to develop their taste for their favorite stars.
Now what makes a Nollywood movie so good? Well, let me assure you in order to really be impressed by one of their movies you need to throwaway all your American ideas of what a good movie is, because it doesn’t apply here. In fact, if you view a Nollywood movie with American ideals, you would be sadly disappointed. From an American standard, Nollywood movies may just insult your intelligence a bit. First of all, the quality of the entire movie is subpar! I mean, the music is always so bad, the editing is horrid, and sometimes the storyline is long in parts that should have been cut off, and not enough information in parts that should have been developed. From an American perspective, their movies are Amateur at best. Thing is, Im really not trying to discredit how amazing Nollywood is…Im just trying to be real. Get a bunch of Americans to sit down and watch a Nollywood movie and they will most likely say the same thing….or worst. I think that I understand the idiosyncrasies a lot more because I grew up in the Caribbean, which is second generation Afrikan (people act the same way there)…and I was around Afrikans a lot in college. I was the Vice President of the International Student Association at an All Black school…and the only international students we had were Afrikans, and Caribbean students.
Nollywood movies seem to not really be movies at all, to tell you the truth. First of all, unlike in Bollywood movies, where the movies run about 3-4 hours, one Nollywood movie tends to always end right around the 1 hour mark without fail. Not that the story is over either. Which make me feel like Nollywood movies are more like a Soap Opera or short TV series, because at the one hour mark, in most cases, the story is incomplete. So you have to look for part 2 of the movie to see what happens next. And sometimes a part 3 and a part 4 too. Hilarious! Because once again, by American standards, a movie is one complete story, right? Well, we are not using American standards here. Stay with me now!
I think that the main thing that is entertaining about Nollywood movies is really getting a glimpse into Nigerian culture…which to me is taking a glimpse into Afrikan culture in general. Im sure most Afrikans won’t agree at all with this. Ghanaians have their own movie industry…but from where I sit…it all looks the same. Im sure a Ghanaian and a Nigerian could tell the difference but things are not that distinct to me with my American eyes. Watching the customs of how people bow down to elders, and the way they dress, and some of things that they say over and over again…like when they say “HEY!” when they find out something shocking is quite the edutainment that I would assume foreigners come to enjoy when they watch these movies. And just in the way things are pronounced it is pretty interesting too. Now, even though they are speaking English, in most cases, their dialect is slightly British and slightly Afrikan…I guess. So you really have to key in to what they are saying because you might miss something. Im sure I miss things all the time because there are things that are said that only their culture would know. It’s like I was talking to a friend from England and she didn’t know who Urkel was. So she loses out on the entire joke because culturally she wasn’t privy to what most Americans have heard before. Same thing applies to watching Nollywood movies…they say things all the time that would make me think that I would have had to grow up there to know that.
Another thing I like about Nollywood movies is that I am supporting a Black film industry. Now if you are Black, you would understand this. And this doesn’t mean anything more that what I am saying. People love to see their own and it is as simple as that. I feel a sense of pride seeing Afrikan people on the screen doing their thing. Even though there are strong cultural differences that are obvious, it doesn’t matter because there is a kinship that is very strong here and I know that we are connected. Not to mention the fact that when I see those fine Afrikan men on the screen, I feel like Im looking at something here. (wink wink) Do you get what Im saying? I mean people forget to realize that Idris Elba, one of the world’s hottest men, is in fact a pure 100% Afrikan man. I mean I can get into some of America’s hottest actors (Denzel, The Rock, Brad Pitt, etc), but folks don’t realize that there is whole ‘nother set of eye candy coming out of Nigeria now. Check out Richard Mofe Damijo, better known as RMD. He is fine like a bottle of wine! HA!
Let’s not forget the women of Nollywood. They tickle me so much. These women go from traditional Afrikan styles with their gele’s (head wraps) and traditional garbs to hot, modern women with their super straight hair wigs, color contacts, and stilettos…and all in the same movie. Nollywood films don’t really have a theme all the time; once again, this is coming from an American standard.
The women actors must have their own following. Their beauty is diverse and I can see it ringing through the screen. One of them that I find most intriguing is Mercy Johnson. What got me is I find her not only intriguingly beautiful, but also extremely convincing too. I mean, this girl has made me cry on several occasions. She is awesome! I have seen her in several movies and I always love the parts she plays and how she plays them.
Speaking of the actors, don’t let the beauty fool you. The acting is really bad. But I don’t really think it’s the acting that is bad; I think it’s the writing that is bad. I think the actors do as much justice to their scripts as they can, but I feel many times that the script is what it is. So the actors work with it and keep it moving. I think if Nollywood movies were to be made better it may actually take away from the authenticity of the film…but I would hope that just because a movie is “low-budget” doesn’t mean that it is authentically Afrikan. That wouldn’t be fair. I would have to say that I do believe that their film industry could do much better in their editing departments. The way movies are cut up and repetitious soundtracks that don’t even apply to what is going on could really be improved. There are times when we are sitting watching the actors eat their entire dinner, not talking to one another, and realize…ok…is this just one of these filler sections? Cut it out!
Im sure that most people on the outside are really unaware of what life in Afrika is like. These movies tend to give an outsider a glimpse of the real Afrika. I love how they showcase life in the village vs life in the city. There are still many people that don’t think that Afrikans live in real homes, have cars, TVs etc. Nollywood movies shut all that down right away. Some movies are based in the villages and others in the cities, but you can see that life is diverse. And for those folks who think Afrika is stuck in time they will find that there are highly mistaken.
So why would an intelligent person want to watch a Nollywood movie? It’s the same reason why people watch Chinese Karate movies, where people are flying through the air over the houses and trees, where their English editing is way off, and where the Karate moves are choreographed in a way that is far from realistic. You know, there is something delightful about watching people from another culture in a sort of satirical way…Looking in from the outside, observing, learning, and being entertained. Embracing other people! It’s connecting to what you recognize from your own culture and lifestyle, and understanding things that you never experienced. It’s why people travel and explore the Earth….to have new and amazing adventures.
So there! I hope in some way I have inspired you to check out this amazing industry. You can actually catch thousands of movies on YouTube…just put in the search: NOLLYWOOD! I think you will quickly become addicted. Thanks for watching!
OH BOY! Don’t get too rowdy now! The answer is NO! But before you get all up and out of your seat, hear (read) me out. First of all let me give you my basis from where this comes from. Although, I’m not anti-Indian food, it is one of my favorite of all ethnic foods in the world. That and Ethiopian…but Ethiopian wins over because it is much healthier. The flavors of Indian food win, as well. But when it comes to everyday living and what matters most is how healthy the food and the people are.
Now before you start pulling out your arguments as to why Indian food is healthy let me address what you may be thinking and why I think differently.
So, most people know that most Indians are Vegetarians…and tend to have lots of vegetarian choices in their restaurants. Yes, very true! However, the problem I see with most of these Vegetarian dishes is that mostly all of them are extremely high in fat. Remember Vegetarian doesn’t mean Healthy. These high fats that they use are not only from the ghee, butter, coconut cream and oil that they use in their cooking but also from the tons of cheese that they cook in their dishes as well. And a High Fat diet in any language in an unhealthy one.
Another argument that you may try to make is that the foods that are made in the homes of the traditional Indian family are very healthy and not like those that are found in the local Indian restaurants that are found in all major cities. Ok, let’s be real. How many people are either Indian or have Indian friends whom you frequent their homes where the mothers and grandmothers are cooking for hours from scratch. Not even here in the US are they cooking like that on a regular basis, most likely due to the fact that modern Indian families (especially the women) are busy with corporate careers…and have assimilated very well into the American Fast Food Culture. I have firsthand knowledge of this from the many Indian families that I met on vacation in Puerto Rico. Most of them told me that they do not cook traditional Indian foods every single day. And if and when they do, it is probably on the weekend just like most families who get to cook large meals and dine with the entire family. So, for arguments sake the food we are talking about here in the kind you typically find in a modern restaurant style here in America.
These restaurants tend to make foods that swim in oil. If the food item is not roasted in a Tandoor oven which seems to create a drier food (less greasy), then the sauces and stews seem to be swimming in some type of grease. That is most likely why it tastes so good. Seriously, what doesn’t taste better with fat in it? Nothing! There is nothing you can say to the way fat flavors food. And Im not saying that I don’t like..in fact love…the flavors of Indian cuisine. Like I said before, it is among my favorite of all foods in the world. I love Indian food (and culture) so much, I am ready to take a flight over there to see what it is like. Food, people, culture…everything. It’s just that fat is fat and too much is not good for you.
Another argument that you may or may not have even thought of are the health statistics of most Indian peoples. Now even in India, where there food should be healthier and more authentic the death rates are rather low: 52.8 years for men and 53.5 years for women. But these numbers are also indicative of an under-developed society that is also plagued with a high rate of communicable (environmental) diseases. Even those Indians who have migrated to America, their adjusted life expectancy is 67.5 years for men and 72.6 years for women.
Health problems prevalent among Indians include hypertension and cardiovascular disease, rheumatic heart disease, nutritional deficits, and high risk behavior such as alcoholism and cigarette smoking…pretty similar to the same health issues (and lifestyle behaviors) as Americans in general. So traditional (restaurant style) Indian food is not necessarily adding on years to one’s life, let’s just put it like this. Another thing folks need to be mindful of is…Indians don’t eat a lot of green leafy veggies…especially raw. Occasionally you will find a good Indian restaurant that serves a salad, but that is not very often. And in my humble opinion, if you are not eating as much raw leafy veggies as you can get inside of your system there is going to be an imbalance there. One of my favorite Indian dishes is Palak Paneer…which is in fact a spinach dish. But let’s face it. As good as it is, there is not much to be left in the way of nutrition. Indians cook their food to death. Im sure this is to bring out, what would be in most cases, what is most important in their cooking: Flavor! Yes, and this does work. But something about food that comes out of countries that have a high incidence of environmental diseases and plagues…like China, and countries on the Afrikan continent: Folks don’t eat food in the raw. I think all this cooking as something to do with a mixture of those environmental factors and maybe their Ayurvedic philosophies as well. And when you travel there they tell you to make sure you eat everything that comes out of high temperature cooking…so to make sure that any problematic food borne issues are irradicated. But Im sure you know by now, that here in the US, we have a different criterion of environmental health and eating fresh and raw foods should be eaten in abundance. Lots of leafy green veggies and of course low fat is the better choice.
Now on the other side of that coin, Ayuvedic eating is super healthy…and you should investigate it. Their ways of treating sickness, preventing sickness, is very holistic to me. But once again, we are not talking about Ayurvedic cooking here.
So now that I have come off as completely Anti-Indian cuisine as I possibly can, let me explore what I think is eating Indian cuisine (from a restaurant) in a healthy way. Veena Prasad from Chowhound recommends these ideas for healthy Indian consumption:
DO ask if you can get pappadums that are baked rather than fried. DON’T choose pakoras or samosas as they are deep fried, or see if they can bake them, as well. DO order tandoori roti instead of naan as its made with unleavened whole wheat. If they smear on butter, ask them to leave it off. DO enquire if brown rice is an option. Brown basmati rice is becoming widely available nowadays.
DO order at least one healthier dish if ordering more than one. Daal or saag (minus paneer and when cream not added) are yummy and healthy too. If the restaurant has vegan options, select one dish that is vegan to avoid excessive cream and butter.
DO order tandoori chicken or chicken tikka. They are marinated with yogurt and spices and cooked in a clay oven – relatively healthy. DONT order rich Mughlai curries. This cuisine developed in the kitchens of the Mughal emperors are made to befit a royal table. Though deservedly alluring whether you’re of royal blood or a commoner, curries made mughlai style are laced with cream. Avoid if possible. DON’T order anything with korma in the name or dishes like butter chicken, tikka masala, and malai kofta. I know, they’re yummy but they’re also laden with cream and thus lots of calories.
DO order spicy food if you can take it. The heat will kick your metabolism into gear. A vindaloo is a great option. It’s spicy and there is no cream in the gravy. But please don’t set your throat on fire.
DON’T order desserts or if you do, share. Indian desserts are rich and sweet. All that sugar will convert to fat in your body if you don’t burn the calories right away. DO end your meal with finishing up a side of yogurt. It will cool your stomach down and with its probiotic powers will help digest that yummy meal you’ve just had.
(Hope that helps!)
I think it does! Thanks.
Also, another thing I can mention about indulging in some amazing Indian food where you are not adding glut to the fire is that many many many Indian restaurants tend to be set up as a buffet. So going to the Indian all you eat buffet can be a delicious affordable option. But that doesn’t mean you have to go up to the buffet 5 times. By then you would have eaten all the calories you need to consume in the whole day…and maybe the next day. And with that being said, going to the Indian buffet occasionally won’t suffer you. In other words, its okay to indulge and have fun once in a blue moon. Its okay to every now and then break the calories bank and go overboard…just know that for several days after that you are going not only very low cal but very low fat also.
So there, that’s my share. I just felt the need to express myself. What I find funny is that people never want to put down something we love. They think it is sacrilege or something like that. But I feel like as intelligent beings we should be able to scrutinize everything and take it for what it is. Indian food is one of the world’s most flavorful cuisines in the world. It is just not one of the world’s most healthiest! Ashe!
Did you get a chance to peep my new book? Im so proud of me….check it out! THANKS!
ORDER IT HERE: http://amzn.to/13BDrQe
Its an eBook on Kindle but you can download it on to your laptop and read it through Cloud Reader. I will soon enough print it…and Im gonna get it translated into Spanish for all my Puerto Rican compadres!
First of all, I don’t believe in the concept of Anti-anything…yes, I know that sounds a bit hippy and all but its just not my way to heal. I can say this…Im not 100% against them though. I do have young children and sometimes their ailments can get a little scary. So I cant say that I have never used them. I just don’t use them for every and anything. Check out here what these suckers are and when you really should be using them:
The Pros and Cons of Antibiotics
Antibiotics were touted as a miracle shortly after their discovery in the 1940s. It seemed that a medical utopia had been achieved – infections were almost magically wiped out by these “miracle drugs.” Then antibiotics began to be prescribed for everything, even viral infections that are not subject to antibiotics.
Today, antibiotics are commonly prescribed as a precaution, even when no infection is present. They are added to soaps, cleaners, and hygienic wipes. So what’s the problem? Are there both pros and cons to synthetic antibiotics?
* Bacterial Resistance – Bacteria have amazing abilities to learn resistance to a simple antibiotic substance. Synthetic antibiotics consist of one “magic bullet” component that is supposed to target the particular germ or germs in question.
Bacteria that are exposed on a constant basis to the single antibiotic component begin to develop resistance, and they then pass this information on to subsequent generations of bacteria. This produces bacteria that are resistant to a particular antibiotic without ever having been exposed to that antibiotic – the “superbugs” that can cause incurable infections. The potential for a medical or biological disaster is very real in the face of such superbugs.
* Intestinal Flora – Antibiotics, particularly “broad spectrum” ones, can and do kill off healthy intestinal bacteria. This can have a profound effect on digestive health and the immune system (much of the human immune response is in the gut). With an out-of-balance immune system, an individual is more prone to further infections, allergies, and chronic problems such as intestinal disorders and chronic fatigue syndrome.
* Emergencies – If there is an emergency, antibiotics can be a life-saver. For most of human history, people suffered terribly from chronic infections, and something simple like a toothache could prove fatal. In an emergency, when a life is at stake, antibiotics can be very effective…as long as there is no resistance that has developed.
* Natural Antibiotics – Antibiotics in their natural state are less likely to encourage bacterial resistance. Herbal sources of antibiotic substances have multiple – sometimes dozens or hundreds – of active compounds in comparison to the one or two in synthetic antibiotics.
These are definitely the bright side of antibiotics. They are affordable, especially compared to the extraordinary expense of prescription antibiotics. Some natural antibiotic substances, such as garlic, are very widely available and affordable.
All in all, synthetic antibiotics do indeed have the potential to divert biological disasters and to be life-savers. The key is to reserve them until they are really needed.
Some Natural Antibiotics that I use regularly are: Garlic, mostly…and occasionally, Echinacea with Golden Seal, Colloidal Silver, and Pau D’Arco tea. You can order them all here:
Garlic: EAT FRESH!
Echinacea with Goldenseal: http://amzn.to/14oagq0
Colloidal Silver: http://amzn.to/13qMWG4
Pau D’Arco Tea: http://amzn.to/1bx2InX
Yes, Im shocked too! Im not big into taking extra stuff. I believe we should just eat good old fresh, whole, organic food…pretty simple right? Well, that is until I found out about THIS!! Im so excited about it that I cant even breathe!! Well, not true! Its just that sometimes in life you just stumble upon something that is so magical.
Anywho, the product is simple Konjac Root. You may have seen it before as an ingredient in your Protein Smoothie powders and other Vegetarian things. Konjac glucomannan (KGM) is a water-soluble dietary fiber derived from the root of the Konjac plant. Konjac is highly nutritious, with over 45% of Glucomannan,9.7% of crude protein,16 different kinds of amino acids up to 7.8%, 7 essential amino acids up to 2.5%.It contains minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, iron ,zinc, manganese, chromium and copper and is low calorie, low fat and high in fiber.
Its dietary fiber is easily absorbed; it is the best and the most secure form of soluble dietary fiber provided by nature to humans. The glucomannan in konjac cannot get hydrolyzed by the digestive enzymes in the digestive organs, therefore one cannot produce calories by consuming this food. Dietary fiber has irreplaceable physiological function in the human body, which prevents the body from harm of many diseases. Americans call it the, “life saving food for the westerners to diseases of civilization.” The Japanese call it “blood purification,” as well as “an intestinal scavenger.”
Konjac can stimulate absorption and digestion of protein and other nutritious substances, keeps the intestine clean, and assists in bowel movement. It can balance the diet, relieve fatigue, and it has the function of keeping one fit and preventing cancer. So, in recent years it has become quite popular around the world, and is labeled “magic food,” “amazing food,” “healthy food”etc.
Dietary fiber is composed of edible plant ingredients, carbohydrates and other similar substances, which can be absorbed and digested by the intestine. Dietary fiber is absorbed with the assistance of polysaccharides, oligosaccharides, lignin and other plant substances through a process that occurs during fermentation through the intestine. Dietary fiber is a necessary ingredient for one’s health.
Soluble dietary fiber (SDF) includes mainly pectin and hydrocolloid substances, as ell as hemicelluloses, gum, pectin, algin, bean gum, agar and CMC. Soluble dietary fiber is incredibly adhesive, thus it can form a protective screen in the surface of the intestine. As a result, it can bind together the molecules of cholesterol, which in turn allows konjac fiber to be the best soluble dietary fiber; due to its Glucomannan content. It cannot be digested in the stomach and it is quite healthy. It has comprehensive effects to the human body and can prevent many chronic diseases by regulating the metabolism. Lycerides prevent the absorption through the intestine, so konjac can aid in losing weight, lowering blood pressure, lipids, glucose and cholesterol.
You can order it here: Konjac Powder
Cholesterol is an important fat-like substance found in the human body, (it is a fat-like substance in the blood as well, bile also has cholesterol,) that can add more risks of getting coronary heart disease and stone disease. Dietary fiber in the human body can effectively adsorb cholesterol and bile acid, and can inhibit the absorption of cholesterol and bile acid through the intestine, stimulate bile excretion, reduce the amount of cholesterol and prevent coronary heart disease and stroke.
Konjac is an alkaline food.
Konjac is a beneficial alkaline food. It is particularly beneficial to those who eat many acidic foods of animals, if konjac is regularly consumed in their diets, acid-base balance can be achieved. Consequently, Konjac is beneficial to one’s health. Konjac food is not only delicious, tasteful, but also has the function of keeping one fit and preventing cancer.
1. Prevent cancer- Konjac can suspend the metabolism of cancer cells prevention. Susceptibility testing indicates it is sensitive to cardiovascular and the colon cancer cell. It can clean sputum, soften hard cells, break up bumps and detoxicate.It can cure mass, sputum nuclear, M.scrofulaceum and prevent cancer.
2. Lubricate intestine and reduce fat absorption. The fiber in konjac can stimulate the intestine and stomach, lubricate the intestine, prevent constipation, and reduce fat absorption. In addition, it is good for the treatment of bowel disease; it can reduce the accumulation of cholesterol, and is quite substantial in prevention of high blood pressure and coronary arteriosclerosis.
3. Weight loss. Konjac is a low-calorie food. The glucomannan in konjac can absorb water and enlarge up to 30-100xs than the original size. After eating, one may feel quite full. It can be used in curing diabetes, and is the ideal diet food.
4. Everyone can eat konjac, especially diabetic patients and those who face challenges with obesity.
Chronic functional (habitual) constipation is very common. A British investigation indicated that 10% of the population was plagued by this disease, the incidence increases with age, 3% in the young to 20% in the old; other developed countries had comparable figures as well. Patients with constipation get worse with age and consuming refined foods. Ambulatory patients that suffer from acute diseases (cerebral vascular accident, heart failure, pulmonary failure, and renal failure) have constipation. Maintaining good circulation in the intestine is the essential treatment to help those with acute diseases.
To prevent constipation, dietary fiber should be added in one’s diet. Coarse grains, vegetables, fruits and konjac flour product are rich sources of dietary fiber. The dietary fiber absorbs water, enlarges stool volume, improves intestinal flora (the bacteria in intestine ferment the dietary fiber to yield lower fatty acids), and stimulates peristalsis. These are all good for defecation.
For patients with constipation, there are currently five kinds of laxatives clinically available: lubrication, ease, salts, force and volume. These four types of laxatives need to be carefully used. However, fiber assists in enlarging the stool volume. This creates fiber that is of 0 caloric value, so one can control their weight without dieting, and have the ability to lose weight naturally.
You can order it here: Konjac Powder
Other forms of dietary fiber can slow down the absorption of nutrients. Unlike other forms of dietary fiber, Konjac dietary fiber, as a soluble form can outline a protective layer around the food to prevent digestive enzymes from interacting with food. Therefore, this stops the absorption of glucose and prevents nutrients from turning into calories. Konjac dietary fiber sweeps the waste of the intestine, reduces the amount and caloric food intake, and it can also take away the excess fat and energy. This concept can be verified by testing the fat content in the stool.
If an overweight patient chooses dietary fiber food, they can not only lose weight easily, but also blood sugar and lipids can be reduced, and the chance of getting atherosclerosis is decreased.
Coronary heart disease has already become one of the biggest killers of human beings. Lipid metabolism will undoubtedly speed up the process of atherosclerosis. A large number of epidemiological investigations and experimental researches confirmed that plasma cholesterol levels are highly related to atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. An U.S survey shows that, over 50% of the elderly populations have higher blood cholesterol, which is a risk factor for coronary heart disease. In the study, if cholesterol levels were reduced by 1%, coronary heart disease risk was reduced by 2 %. The soluble dietary fiber in konjac can increase bile acid excretion and bile acid synthesis by interacting with bile acid. Accordingly, the study’s results indicated that cholesterol levels can be reduced, can decrease the cancer possibilities brought by acid metabolites, and can reduce the gallstone possibilities brought by accumulations of biliary excretion.
Glucomannan can effectively inhibit the absorption of cholesterol and bile acid through lipolysis through the intestine, promote fat excretion, reduce the amount of fat and cholesterol in the blood, and reduce the amount of cholesterol and triglyceride in serum. It can also prevent high blood pressure, high lipids, and other cardiovascular diseases.
The soluble dietary fiber in konjac can increase bile acid excretion and bile acid synthesis by interacting with bile acid, so that cholesterol levels can be reduced. The SDF in Konjac can reduce cancer possibilities by acid metabolites and reduce the gallstone formation due to the accumulations of biliary excretion. According to experiments studied, insoluble crude fiber has no effect of reducing lipids, only soluble fiber has the effect of reducing lipids. Konjac can notably reduce blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Once lipid reaches to the normal level it will not get lower. Thus, konjac can regulate lipid metabolism and prevent hyperlimpidemia.
Regulate immune system
Non-starch polysaccharides have the function of regulating the immune system and can strengthen one part or several parts in non-specific immune; cellular immune and humeral immune. Preliminary studies indicate that konjac flour has immunoregulatory activity.
Konjac has a rare kind of natural antibiotic. It can form antibacterial film at the surface of the food which is made from konjac flour, (the main material and other materials) so that it can prevent bacterial invasion, extend the storage time and play the role of antibiotics and preservation.
Preferred Calcium Supplement
As natural plant, 100 grams of konjac product contains 43 mg of calcium. The calcium in konjac food can be easily washed out; it washes especially when the wash out rate is much higher in acid solution. When konjac is consumed, the chewed konjac then interacts with the acid gastric juice, and calcium begins to dissolve, which in turn becomes absorbed by stomach and intestine, so that calcium can be supplemented.
Chinese konjac was exported to Japan 1000 years ago. In the beginning, it was a precious gift between monks in the form of medicine and cakes. When the Japanese administration of Kamakura came into office, it became the popular food. Konjac is quite popular in Japan; almost every family eats Konjac in every meal. Even today it is still the most favored food in Japan. The Ministry of Health in Japan implemented that konjac food should be used in the cafeteria for all schools. Right now, Japan is the biggest country in consuming konjac food. Konjac was listed as one of the top ten healthiest foods by World Health Organization. Source: konjacfoods.com
So what does that mean for you?
It means that everyone should be on this stuff.
You can order it here: Konjac Powder
You can make it two ways. One is you can mix it in cold water or cold juice, stir it or blend it up quickly and drink it fast. OR you can mix it with juice and let it sit and thicken and you can eat it like a pudding. I prefer to mix mine with cold apple juice and make it into an “Apple Sauce” like quality. Then during the day, plan on drinking lots of water. It actually fills you up and is a great way to lessen what you eat. Not to mention all of its other benefits too. Consuming one or two glasses as directed per day will make you eat about half of what you were eating before. And you know the game…the less calories you eat…the more weight you lose!! I heard about a lady who lost 90 pounds taking Konjac every day. That sounds like a healthy plan.
Most people prefer to take weight loss pills…but why take a chemical when you can just consume a 100% plant product with no added fillers and junk. I LOVE IT! So, get on this! I have some and I am soooo impressed! This is an amazing product for Diabetics and people who need to lose weight healthfully!
By the way, did you get a chance to pull up my latest eBook? Im so excited about this! Revolution in the Kitchen: Changing the way you eat…Now! This book took me two years to get together. I actually only needed about 10 days to write it…but it took me this long to organize it and get the right vibes to put it out here. BRAVO to me! YAHOO!
READ the next article on how to make Konjac work for you
If you have any questions about it, let me know!
Peace and Love
Source: Various articles on Konjac on the internet