EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT: Arabinogalactans
WHAT IT IS: Arabinogalactans are found in many foods and plant fibers, including garlic, leeks, carrots, radishes, pears, tomatoes, wheat, red wine, coconut, curcumin (found in curry seasoning), echinacea, and some tree barks. The best source for arabinogalactans is the larch tree. Of course, the Master Formula contains plenty of this beneficial extract, so you won’t have to visit your local forest for a larch bark snack.
WHAT IT DOES: We’ve all heard how echinacea, certain vegetables, garlic and onions can help fight infections and improve the strength of the immune system. Here’s why: arabinogalactans. All of these foods and herbs contain this potent little group of polysaccharides, and researchers think this is why such foods and herbs as garlic and echinacea are famous for boosting the immune system.
STUDIES SHOW: Arabinogalactans, scientifically speaking, are polysaccharides. They are gum sugars found in plant cell walls. But there’s nothing sweet about them: these powerful compounds can stimulate killer cells, interleukins, and tumer necrosis factor. These factors are involved in maintaining the health of the immune system. Scientists have found that arabinogalactans can help reduce length and severity of colds and infections. Arabinogalactans may also be helpful in fighting parasites.
WHY WE LIKE IT: In addition to offering immune system support, arabinogalactins appear to promote healthy gut bacteria. This is critical for maintaining a strong immune system and reducing those fattening gut bugs we like to talk about here on the MDA.
Worker Bees’ Daily Bites
1) Calm Cows
It’s all over the news: Scientists have invented a cow that may be immune to mad cow disease. Yes, that’s right – a whole cow. Not a drug, or a food, or a shot, but an actual breed of cow that is immune to getting a disease caused by…oh yeah: irresponsible, filthy factory food production. Of course, since our government still insists there is absolutely no cause to worry about killer burgers, we suppose this techie fix is just for kicks – you know, just in case. Hey, it’s always good to have an extra species of bovine on the shelf for those rainy day public health disasters. Why mop the slimy slaughterhouse floor when you can just make a new cow that won’t be affected by said slime? Hooray, technology!
If you’re interested in the dark underbelly of the mad cow conspiracy (we’re staying neutral for now…but boy, are they persuasive), visit our favorite little conspiracy site maintained by a gaggle of rogue journalists who probably eat tofu and have really messy hair. If you’re interested in the government’s take, visit the FDA. If you haven’t seen the news piece, here’s the clickativity. And we promise, no more cow pictures for a while.
Beneath the calm exterior…
2) Yeah, yeah, have a drink…
Yet another study reveals that one or two drinks a day may not be so bad for the heart – and now, it appears, for the old blood pressure. This is a debate that will probably never go away, and the fact that this large-scale (11,000: pretty good) survey (kind of lame by scientific standards) found a glass or two of Grandpa’s cough syrup is good for middle-aged men isn’t the worst news on earth, now is it? Of course, women should stick to one drink (in general).
However, keep in mind that:
a) A little sip is good, a little more is bad. Anything more than one or two drinks and you’re in the boiling-point blood pressure range, and,
b) while beer may – may – help raise good cholesterol a bump or two, so will a good multivitamin, a few weekly servings of lean fish, and daily use of olive oil or Smart Butter. We’re just sayin’.
Although, this does look good…
Avocados are at the tail end of their season right now, so you can scoop up these deliciously fatty treats for a great price. The best part about this rich fruit? The fat is good for you! Especially in winter, when skin is prone to dryness, an extra daily dose of beneficial fatty acids can be all it takes to stay comfortable in your skin.
Slice, score, or mash your avo, drizzle with a little lemon or lime juice, add a dash of kosher salt, and you’ve got yourself a really nutritious snack. Keep in mind that, like nuts, avocados are very high in calories, so enjoy in moderation.
Fuel up with this smart pick before the weekend hits!
WORKER BEES DAILY BITES
Where to start!
Health 2.0 – it’s a term now – is taking off in a big way.
You can be part of it here at MDA! Collaboration, hand-built information, and alternative health news and views – now that’s personalized health care. Check out a health care industry blogger’s take on it by hitting this clickativity.
We’re anti-peanut and not afraid to say it!
Our fellow blogger Dr. Joe Mercola blogs about the latest shenanigans of the food industry. Not even peanuts are safe. Peanuts! But we still like almonds. (Psst…peanuts are full of molds and toxins. Not exactly your best bet for lunch. The government actually allows what’s considered a permissible amount of contamination. Thanks, Uncle Sam. We feel the love.)
You have to wonder when peanut butter companies save you the trouble of using a knife and talk about that like it’s a good thing.
How Healthy Are You, America?
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has released its annual health report. We’ll be getting into some of the 2006 numbers tomorrow. Take a gander now if you’re curious…
Grandma’s Favorite Dish Made Your DNA?
Not only is a mother’s diet during pregnancy important for the health of the child…but so was Grandma’s. A new study reported in Science Daily has discovered that eating habits can have an effect on DNA through several generations. Now, this was a “murine” study – in other words, some squeakers (mice).
So don’t feel too guilty about that year you had a little too much love for chai soy lattes. However, the important message is that genetics and health are more complicated than we’ve previously thought. Makes dinner take on a whole new meaning, doesn’t it?
I don’t know whether to laugh or cringe at the bizarre-but-true existence of the Heart Attack Grill. Call it vulgar, call it wasteful, call it offensive – but someone’s eating there. A lot of someones. And I guarantee you they’re not healthy.
The Heart Attack Grill: the restaurant that so prides itself on inducing heart problems, the burgers have names such as “Double Bypass”. Of course, as John Stossel points out, no idiotic unhealthy venture would be complete without scantily-clad “nurse” waitresses. (Because if you’re going to infuriate the health experts, you might as well offend the better-smelling half of the population, too. The bizarre American intersection of fast food meat and female objectification – didn’t these guys learn anything in college? Did they go to college?). Everyone knows I’m no big fan of the food police. Also, I fully admit to a love affair with salad rivaled only by Popeye. But, considering the fact that millions of people every year are tragically affected by easily-prevented heart attacks (and the fact that a half-million die), this kind of gloating stupidity concerns me, if only because these men may be reproducing.
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