Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.

Mark's Daily Apple

3 May

The Vegetable Conspiracy: Why You Should Avoid Greens at All Costs

How to Get Sick and Die, Part 2

The Definitive Guide

Every convenience restaurant, processed food manufacturer and prime time commercial wants to help you get sick and die! Isn’t that nice of them? And so far – despite a major media vegetable conspiracy – we’re doing pretty well, too. Although, there’s still a lot of progress to be made! More of us could be getting sick and dying! But you’ll at least be encouraged to learn that Americans:

Don’t exercise.

Are pretty sick anyway.

Are really stressed out.

Are the fattest people around (basically).

– Have not just one, but two epidemics going on. Yeah!

Clearly, getting sick and dying is the American way. If you haven’t gotten busy with getting sick and dying, for the love of lard, what’s wrong with you? Do your patriotic duty! (If this is stressing you out, good! That’s one more great way to get sick and die, and it’s about time you joined the ranks of the most stressed-out people around.)

Fortunately, as I’ve said, it’s actually not that difficult to get sick and die. Millions of Americans are doing it, and you can, too. It may seem like the information and tools are being kept from you, but that’s just due to our silly, negligent media (those guys). Owned by greedy old men and aggressive lobbyists, the media help push the great vegetable conspiracy. But the information is there. In truth, you have all the food, retail options and lifestyle choices readily available at your fingertips! This is the silent majority, and it’s time to seize our stake. Don’t be left out! Come on, join the bandwagon that everyone else is already on anyway – wouldn’t it feel great to know you’re feeling as bad as you possibly can feel?

I’m going to tell you how – for free! There is nothing to purchase, ever! (Except more of the food that is available everywhere.) Why am I doing this, you ask? What’s in it for you, Mark?, you wonder. Well, it’s because this continent has almost caught up to us in the obesity department. And we’re losing our lead in heart disease. This is unacceptable! I won’t stop until our number oneyness is totally beyond what any other nation could ever hope to approach!

As promised, this week I’m going to highlight the best, most convenient foods to help us all get sick and die! I would say recipes, but cooking is part of the great vegetable conspiracy as well. Forget cooking – give me convenience! Here are the top three foods to get sick and die. You’ll be surprised to see that they are very common, popular items. They’re very easy to find! But does our biased media ever discuss the wonderful disease-inducing benefits of these fabulous foods? Of course not. Salad pushers.

Cheeseburgers. With bacon and extra mayonnaise, please. Try to get at least three packets squeezed in there. And here’s an industry secret: don’t bother with a Big Mac. Go to a real restaurant and order a gourmet burger – you’ll get at least twice the calories and fat. See what the media is keeping from you? (I commend the brave journalist who presented the burger findings.) McDonald’s is relentlessly attacked (Supersize Me, anyone?) yet the best way to get sick and die is right under your nose at every major restaurant chain! Media distortion as usual.

bacon 1

Pizza. But no thin crust wimpy pie with veggies! Pile on that spinal-dessicated meat and get a thick cheese-stuffed crust! Now you’re talking!

pizza


Burritos. Make sure to stuff that hefalump with lots of “steak” and “cheese” and “sauce”. The cheaper, the better! It’s my right to eat a meal the size of my foot, and it better be of questionable origin! Fortunately, if you order a burrito at most convenience joints, this is all taken care of.

burrito

This is La Salsa’s Burrito


How to Get Sick and Die, Part 1

Disclaimer: Satire.

2 May

Everything but the Kitchen Sink

Worker Bees’ Daily Bites:

Have we got a great round-up for you today, Apples! There’s so much good stuff we can’t stand it.

Let’s get to it:

Diabetes: Better Off with Lifestyle Changes

Despite a spate of new drug therapies for type 2, evidence still conclusively shows that lifestyle changes are the most effective method for preventing and treating diabetes. What’s really alarming is the fact that diabetes has doubled in the last decade! Drugs can treat the condition, but the underlying problems aren’t going away until we make serious lifestyle changes. Exercise, elimination of sugars and processed foods from the diet, and reducing stress are all vital factors in staving this epidemic.

“Best Oxymoron Award” Goes to…

The FDA wants to put suicide warnings on antidepressants. These drugs are risky, but especially for children and teens. Let’s put this in perspective. Can you imagine if the FDA needed to put obesity warnings on weight loss medications? Or cancer warnings on nicotine patches? Or heart attack warnings on statins? Doesn’t anyone think it’s odd that we even need a suicide warning, of all things, on drugs that make you…anti-depressed?

We Stand Corrected

Sara here. We’ve been recommending regular tuna over albacore based on the misunderstanding that regular tuna was higher in Omega-3’s. We were totally wrong on that, and we appreciate Slashfood for letting us know. Whew.

Restaurant Secrets

Get ‘em while they’re hot.

Smart Shoppers: Check Out the Organic Report Card

Hey, this is a great site that rates all the organic farms (marks are given in cows, not A’s, B’s and C’s). We stumbled onto it after finding out that Horizon may not be as cud-chewer friendly as we believed (either that, or a small news outfit is trying to get some press). Fitsugar holds the keys to the castle on this debate, so mosey on over to check it out.

Was this a useful post, or what? (Please don’t say “or what”. But do share your thoughts in the forum.) Until tomorrow, Apples!

kitchensink

This is D00D’s Flickr Photo

2 May

I’m Not Lovin’ It

It’s time for another Rotten Apple Award, kids. The Impulsive Buy blog – which puts the “ew” in product review – covers everything from the new mint flavored Tylenol to McDonald’s new cinnamon bites, or bits, or buns, or something. The Rotten Apple is not being bestowed upon Impulsive Buy, however – it’s Mickey D that deserves all the glory on this one.

cin

We try not to pick on McDonald’s too much. After all, there’s the Cheesecake Factory, where you can gain a pound by eating a single slice of cake. And to its credit, McDonald’s does make nutrition and calorie information available, something which the Cheesecake Factory evidently has a lot of trouble doing. But I feel McDonald’s is being blatantly disingenuous when there’s all this talk about premium chicken, premium coffee, and premium salads going on yet surreptitiously the G.A. (that’s Golden Arches) still pushes new sugary, fattening products with more speed and consistency than their employee turnover rate.

Isn’t it rather hypocritical to advertise those happy mommy-n-me commercials featuring salads, apple slices and sweet smiles, or to make a big public announcements about eliminating trans fat from french fries, while simultaneously introducing this 460-calorie dessert of glorified sugar biscuits? I know McDonald’s isn’t trying to position itself as Mecca for health nuts, but they’ve also done heavy (elephantine, really) marketing in the last few years to play up their healthier options and apparent concern for people’s hearts and waistlines.

Now that’s just rotten.

rotten apple 03
1 May

Today’s News Brought to You by the Fuming Fuji. Uh-oh.

FUJ

Fuming Fuji reports:

Now here is a fumer after Fuji’s own core. The Fuji grows very tired of this argument, so it is pleasing to see an ally in the fight. Sugar does not make a diet exciting, unless you count going to the dentist to find out how many cavities your tiny tot has as excitement.

Fuming Fuji also reports:

Fuji is shocked. Stunned. Actually fumeless. This doctor writes a rousing call to doctors everywhere: support your patients’ interest in alternative therapies, and educate thyself before judging.

Dr. Joseph P. says:

“Practitioners recognizing that they are not the source of healing, but the means by which patients discover, or actually rediscover, their own innate capacity to regain health.”

This is not quite as good as rabble-rousing, but rousing is still rousing. This warrants a good roll in the barrel. Excuse me for a moment…

Okay, I am back. Do not miss this news, apples:

Pomegranate juice helps stop cancer. Okay, I am a little miffed that apples do not stop cancer. But then again I am handsome and well-liked. Raise healthy seedlings: let them have fun staining the tablecloth with a real pomegranate, because pomegranate juice does not have fiber.

I must say it has been very fun providing the bites today. But if you think I am done fuming, Apples…

1 May

Sergeant Pepper

This week’s Tuesday 10 is in response to junior apple Tricia, who emailed me yesterday with the following question:

“Mark, I have heard that spicy foods can prevent cancer. Is this true? Does this mean things like salsa, or curries? And what about heartburn?”

Great questions, Trish! “Spicy foods” do indeed help prevent cancer. I’m not making that up. (For the research-hungry, check out these must-reads: this study, this site, this article and this blogger’s take).

“Spices” – specifically, we’re talking about capsicum plants like chili peppers – also have important cardiovascular benefits. Junior Apple Steve saw his heart rate and blood pressure drop after he switched from using black pepper to cayenne pepper. (I have it on good authority he now liberally doses all his meals with some heat.) Peppers are loaded to the gills with a variety of powerful antioxidants that go beyond cancer prevention. If they had gills.

Peppery foods carry the reputation of being irritating to the digestive tract, although in truth peppers have healing properties. Many of the spicy foods that are infamous for causing heartburn are actually irritating because of the huge amounts of processed (fried or trans) fat. Trans fat, remember, is a real irritant to the system because it is full of oxidizing free radicals. Throw spice into the mix and no wonder it’s a recipe for heartburn and stomach discomfort. Spice just adds insult to injury if you’re chowing on those fried, high-calorie foods.

Some healthy heat, when coupled with vegetables and sparing amounts of good fats from things like olive oil or nuts, is surprisingly enjoyable for even the most sensitive bellies. And there are plenty of healthy peppers that aren’t spicy at all.

There are dozens of varieties of peppers, and many are not only mild, but sweet. Here are ten great “hots” that will do your body good:

10. Curry

Red, yellow, green, hot, medium, mild – just eat it. Curried vegetables and lean meats are really, really good, and curcumin-containing curry helps prevent cancer. You can buy ready-made curry sauces, but make sure you’re getting a healthy one that isn’t full of mostly sugar and oil. I suggest buying fresh, loose yellow curry powder (which contains turmeric, the important ingredient) and making your own sauce at home. A popular Western alternative: paprika.

curry

This is Barron’s Flickr Photo

9. Chili pepper

However you buy it (dried, fresh), this regular old hot pepper is excellent for the heart. These are Thai chilis. I’ve been addicted to them ever since my recent trip to Thailand.

thai

This is Nicodeemus1’s Flickr Photo

8. Cayenne pepper

Try substituting powdered cayenne for black pepper and watch your heart rate improve. It’s also less irritating to the stomach than black pepper.

cayenne

This is Princes Milady’s Flickr Photo

7. Habanero pepper

Is this thing the spiciest substance on earth, or is it just me? I’m not a fan, but if you love intense heat and/or torture, this guy is full of eye-healthy antioxidants. Good luck.

hab

This is Code Poet’s Flickr Photo

6. Jalapeno pepper

The ubiquitous pepper comes in a range of heat, but almost everyone can handle the mild selection. Lots of flavor, really powerful antioxidant benefit. Salsa is one of the healthiest foods you can eat because it’s essentially an antioxidant explosion – tomatoes, jalapenos, onions and often garlic.

jala

This is ilmungo’s Flickr Photo

5. Poblano (ancho) pepper

Gentler on the mouth, but still really nutritious.

ancho

This is Progoddess’ Flickr Photo

4. Anaheim pepper

Milder still (some come spicy). Both poblanos and anaheims are great peeled, then baked or stewed.

anaheim

This is Confident_Cook’s Flickr Photo

3. Bell pepper

I eat these crisp babies daily – red, orange, yellow, green.

bells

This is JStar’s Flickr Photo

2. Baby bell pepper

Have you tried these out? They’re popping up in grocery stores everywhere. I lop off the tops and toss them into just about everything from salads to stir fries. Appropriately lopped, they also make a great natural scoop for hummus.

minibells

This is Vandys’ Flickr Photo

1. Serrano pepper

A little more kick than jalapenos, and great in salsa, salad, stews, you name it.

serrano

This is Icka’s Flickr Photo

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